Scene: Wearing masks and practicing social distancing, Mom and Sidekick reflect on Mom’s parting comment from the previous week: “…Finally, after years of struggle, I feel I have a bright future to achieve my dreams. Anything is possible,” Mom had said to Sidekick. They pondered that as they sat, satisfied.
Sidekick: Interested in having Mom elaborate, is encouraging her with her right hand motioning toward herself, asks Mom, “What stands out as making the difference for you?”
Mom: Thinking about that, she looks to the right, begins to smile and says, “When I Visualized the New You shift, I heard my self-talk say “yes,” describing it as “great!” “That made the shift feel, congruent for me. All of my parts were in agreement about the change. It was like the New You was an acceptable, ecological, improvement.”
Sidekick: Makes a palms-up gesture with her hands, “Parts?” she asked with questioning eyes.
Mom: “Yes. The different parts of me, in my head. They confer like a board of directors. They argue, fight, laugh and cajole about this and that. Sometimes they drive me crazy. But it seems like they are my friends – on my team.”
Sidekick: Eyebrows lifted, hand gesturing again, says, “Say more about that.”
Mom: “Well, the parts – they form as a group, get to be like norming folks and then there’s all this storming going on until they finally make a decision and perform the task. Then they go off until they will meet again to solve another problem. There are: the denial part, the addict part, the criminal part, the don’t change part, the pro-social part, the inquiring part, the change part and it goes on and on. You know, parts!”
Sidekick: Nodding quickly and looking excited, she says, “You give me an idea. What if I could show you a way your parts could mediate conflicts for your benefit? Would you be interested in seeing how that would work?” Eager now Mom nods “yes.”
Mom: “Tell me how. It would be great if there were a way to make changes without conflict. Can you use the drug court part as an example? I feel like such a loser being in drug court.”
Sidekick: “Sure! We can use the drug court part. First, though, let’s look at the ‘loser’ statement. You looked like you really meant that. Like it was a 10 for your doubting part, or, oppositional part. Are you ready to get rid of that feeling?”
Mom: Looking a little lost, says hesitatingly but willingly, “Show me how. There’s another part of me that says, “get it fixed”.”
Sidekick: “You know, I heard about a judge who told drug court graduates, “Society is not going to change for you. It’s you that must be willing to change and implement the changes you’ve made in the program.” So, if that makes sense, are you ready now to make this change?”
Greek Chorus: Chanting: “Sooner or later Everywoman must face what’s on the other side. Whether it’s society or your maker, we are all called to task for our works. Life is lived on Life’s terms.”
Mom: Wondering again where the voices came from, says, “Yes! If I’m not successful in drug court I could go to jail for 20 years. I feel like such a loser!”
Sidekick: “Fair enough. So, before we go on to “the parts change” piece, let me ask you a question. Let’s say there were two drug court clients. One of the clients was ready and willing, did all that was asked in drug court. You know the kind – was always on time and present, did all the home work, followed all the rules and participated in class and role plays.
The other one was always looking for excuses not to attend – didn’t do the work and was using while in the program. Which one do you see as ‘the loser’?”
Mom: “Well, that’s too easy. The loser is ‘the loser’. The one that wasn’t ready, willing and able to do the work.”
Sidekick: “Okay. Pick one. Which one are you going to be?”
Mom: Chin up and shoulders strait says, “I’m going to be the one who wins by being in drug court.”
Sidekick: “Okay. Now I want you to repeat the statement, “I’m such a loser.”
Mom: Hesitating, with a blank expression and looking doubtful says, “I’m such a loser.”
Sidekick: “Now on a 1-10 scale, 10 being really powerful, what is that number now?”
Mom: “Wow! I don’t even feel it now. It’s a zero.”
Sidekick: “Wonderful! Now, repeat the other statement, “I’m going to be the one who wins by being in drug court.” Tell me what that number is.”
Mom: Grinning, repeated the statement while her face lit up. “It’s a 10. I’m a winner!”
Scene: They decided that was enough for one day and agreed to talk about anchoring the winner for future use and doing the Parts Change next time.