In April 2011 I was working as a therapist with children in a primary school in North London. A graduate psychologist, counselor and dramatherapist, I had specialized in working with children and young people.
One day after finishing work the SENCO called me at her office. She looked at me seriously through her thick glasses and said that I needed to stop doing what I was doing. My clients were getting too free and asking too many questions which disrupted the routine of the school. A few weeks later I was fired.
That was when I realized how political my work as a therapist was and how the organizations I was working with were organizing me as much as I was organizing them. I experienced this as a big failure and simultaneously a relief. It was the first time in my life that I was seen as dysfunctional for a system and quickly taken out of it. I did not have the tools and perhaps the environment to create with them another language that goes beyond the binaries of success and failure.
At the same time the hours from my other jobs were reduced simultaneously. I broke up with my boyfriend and said goodbye to a few close friends that were leaving from London and going back to their countries. Living in very different parts of the world we did not know when we would meet again. The financial crisis started hitting Europe and my country. The world as we knew it was changing.
I had enough money to stay for a couple of months in London without work. It was an intense time emotionally. I wanted to harm myself and the stories I used to say to get me back ‘in order’ were not working. Until one day, I don’t know how, I decided to perform someone different. I crawled out of my bed to my desk and wrote a letter as if I was 50 years old talking to my younger self asking her to create the life she wanted to live. Who would I be if I was not me? Zooming out of that moment in my life I became part of a historical continuum that existed before I was born and would develop after I died. What would I do if I did not need to know?
I remembered the women groups my grandmother used to host in her house twice per day. How much I wish I could go back in time and be with them! Not knowing what I was doing, I called my friend Maja from Serbia and asked her if we could organize together groups for women, inviting them to move and have conversations together – listening to each other and their bodies. We agreed to do together what we did not know how.
In collaboration with her and other friends and colleagues, we organized international workshops for women in Serbia, Hungary and Greece and two presentations in conferences in UK and Sydney, Australia. I also travelled to the States and started a PhD on Somatic Psychology even though I could not afford to do more than the first residential.
That summer with the support of my community I performed the life I wanted to have. Building with failure and the pain of alienation we discovered that parallel and within this world of paradigms and institutions we could organize our own worlds of small revolutions. Created by the world, we were also creating it.