Five Layers Alive - Somewhere Between Layers

By Ani Rainauli

“The highs and lows of what has been,

I would do it all again.”

Artist: Marcus Alexander

Song: All again


I am in the bizarre place of nothingness and searching for some clearance in order to assist me. Truth be told, what am I holding onto? Waiting for someone to give me a hand and help me balance? It’s clear that I am wasting my energy for nothing. I am in nothingness and am wasting for nothing. Here and now is the story of my impasse, a huge blurry matter like a thick white smog. Maybe I am in a sterile void with an enormous wish to be in a fertile one.

Lots of memories are triggered with the word ‘impasse’ and there is one dream I had in the beginning of my gestalt training: I was in the room with my therapist with the white smog hanging in the air. I knew that there was a fire somewhere around, maybe a bit farther away, in another house, but the smog from that fire was in our room. It was a paradoxical smog, not the toxic one from a real fire, but a white one like a pure snow, totally safe for both of us. We could co-exist and breathe with it. I could see my therapist in front of me but I was not really around bodily. I remember only one image of myself: the backside of my head and the only thing I saw was my long black hair.

I am stuck somewhere holding nothing about myself.

This looks like the same type of smog but with more holes of daylight. I am still searching for support and clearance as new things are happening around me, trying to catch up and not get


Tired of running towards the support. Why can they not just go side by side?  

Is this the impasse? If there are holes of daylight in this smog I am in a fertile void. Otherwise it’s so hard to find the way to be in implosion. If there is no potential in this void, waiting for something to emerge, how can I become awareness of possibilities? For me implosion feels heavy. I keep putting lots of things inside, pressing hard to make them fit. I sense the tension growing as I already have lots of choices around. Also the smog is still there, making everything harder to see.

Now there is some energy waiting to be released. Wait, what if I want to stay with my implosion and embrace it? This is also a type of explosion but in the layer of implosion. It’s like embracing my state of implosion. I will do the same with impasse, with my phobic and phony states. For me explosion is the small embraces that I do during every layer I go through. Explosion is not particularly the destination of those layers. It’s the process within. Every layer is me and I accept it.

The smog? I accept it.

The cute and playful side of me as my phony layer? I accept it.

The fears I have with my fixed role of being cute and playful? Yeah, I do accept it.

The cycle of life, cycle of contact, cycle of experience, everything is happening. It is not tragic and it not arriving at the end of something. I love the way all of this happens again, bringing new experiences, new awareness. Yes, there is no doubt, “I would do it all again.”

Adventures in Being

Gestalt Therapy and Counselling for Growth in Edinburgh with Karen Nimmo