Hala said on the very first day: "I am an art therapist and an integrator. Remember, anything you draw, anything you express, will be the process of healing. And I hope in this class, any growth of anyone will influence each other and will harmonize." Yes, we became very friendly, influencing each other by the fourth day. We became somewhat high and wanted to express more. Hala permitted us to use the room one or two hours in the evening, and we stayed in the room.
In an old magazine, I found a picture; an old man holding a newborn baby, which reminded me of my grandfather. He came to celebrate my son's birth but he died a year later. Next picture I found was of a tall man walking with a slender boy, which reminded me of my son and his father, my ex-husband. I clipped out these pictures for collage.
Then I tried a Scribble method which Hala showed us that morning. I took a blue crayon in the left hand, shut my eyes and scribbled on a big white sheet of paper. When I opened my eyes and saw the trace of my scribble, I intuitively felt it was a picture of an expecting woman. I colored the woman's womb vivid red and her arms orange. While coloring it red, I felt my subtle emotion in the deep place was dissolving as if the body of a larva melted and changed inside the cocoon. I pasted the photos of the men on the expecting woman. As I had a surgery of myoma of the uterus three years before ... Hala's art therapy healed me very softly.
In the last class, Hala asked us to draw pictures of "Bridge." First, I drew a wide blue river which separated people. Then I drew many yellow arch bridges connecting this side and the other. I drew people crossing the bridge. The shadow of the bridges reflected in the surface of the blue water, and I was really enjoying drawing.
When I explained this picture in the class, I was suddenly seized with a strong emotion. I heard my voice was trembling with tears, but I wanted to share my feeling with my classmates. So I spoke: I thought I did not belong to my original family. I had not even told my parents I was studying Adlerian Psychology. Recently a book I translated (Alfred Adler: As We remember Him) was published, so I sent a copy of the book to my parents. To my surprise, my mother sent me an email in which she said she liked this book very much and had finished reading it in a night. She praised my translation. My father said he was deeply impressed by Adler's way of treating children.
My friends in the class listened to me silently. Hala warmly said "You have already started...." I found that I have belonged to my family as I belong to this class.
This was my story of ICASSI. When I returned to Japan, the rainy season was over and the hottest season had already begun. It was only two weeks' trip but I felt I was totally transformed and was reborn. I want to say a lot of thanks to all my classmates and Hala!