There are so many ways for us to achieve a connection quite simply by just going through our daily routing when awakening each morning to enter the world. For most of us we feel refreshed once again as we rub the sleep from our eyes pulling ourselves away from that warm snug place. We make ourselves presentable and once we have eaten our breakfast we take that first footstep out of the door wondering what the day will bring. That connection is part of our world it happens naturally or we would never leave our four walls behind us, and in most situations we look forward to those connections that we make daily be it our work colleagues family or friends. These connections are received differently depending on who we are confectioning with, not discounting the causal fleeting connections that happen all the time whilst buying a newspaper that sandwich or the Costa coffee welcomingly received. There are so many other ways in which we connect but I’m going to stop here as I don’t wish to bore you to death with a list that sees no end to move on to why I’m here today.
Connecting whilst still within in the throes of our past abuse.
Connecting seems such an easy thing for us to do it should be enjoyable bringing with it a smile or a grimace if it’s a bollocking from the boss but nevertheless this is still a mutual connection just not a very welcome one. We connect by allowing someone else into our world and our personal space which for some like me for so many years found that so very hard to do, sadly some are still trapped within that space not feeling that they trust the world enough to assist them in their endeavours. Making a new connection is unknown territory for everyone but for abuse survivors it’s a complete walk of faith and more than a little unsettling. There is that question the one within us always there waiting in the wings should we can we trust a world that for so long was so very untrustworthy? Sadly we mostly convince ourselves that it’s a risk to far but not until we have tentatively walked a few yards down the line.
This may all seem a little deep and it is if we are talking about an everyday connection but what about a connection of the heart? I myself avoided this connection for so very long having such a deep seated connection makes us feel vulnerable, and that feeling makes us bolt out of the starting gate at a hundred miles an hour without the need for a starting pistol. We ponder what this connection wants from us because they always want something don’t they? We are overloaded with that doubt in our minds from a source that should never have had that type of connection with us EVER. But nevertheless this connection brought with it our first encounter with the word love, as we were told daily that we were loved and this connection was perfectly normal. Ok I will skip a few lines here as I feel the need to scream at the heavens in a less than a lady like manner.
How do we connect and allow someone to enter a place that we have guarded for so long and do we ever truly do so? In my own history if I were to pick at the bones of it I don’t think that I have ever truly done so completely. I have always kept that little bit back for me expecting to have to hang on to it when this connection once more goes tits up. It’s a little like I am expecting it to fail and by doing so I’m not surprised when it does! Having just relayed those thoughts to you I am reminded that I really need to address this long standing issue vigorously, because in truth it has cost me far too much to date. To really connect with our hearts we have to trust in that someone and that is something that makes our hearts pitter patter in such an unnerving way. A connection of the heart is something that we should enter in to openly but that takes hard work and a positive mindset, or on the other hand I guess we can always oddly convince ourselves that it’s easier not to have that connection. The inevitable outcome is that the other person with which the connection could be formed will never even leave the starting gate in the race of emotions that could be loving shared, making the Grand National for them look like the local donkey derby with no chance in hell up catching up to us. We are off down that race track facing each jump alone no matter how big the hurdle carrying that jockey of abuse that no horse has ever been asked to carry. Falling many times because the jump was just too high, stumbling down on the other side before heading for the next and it never enters our head that we could just walk around it. It seems that our past has made us feel that every hurdle has to be encountered jumped or pulled apart in to so many fragments that we will never find the whole again. Dissection beyond distraction is the only way forward not only in our own lives but the life’s of those that are trying to get to close to make that connection. Everything becomes a drama whilst we look for the things that could go wrong; we forget to see that our future could be so very different if we were to just walk out of the pathology laboratory.
Some things just are they don’t have a reason or a hidden agenda they are just opportunities in our life that we either stop to recognise as a connection of the heart that could be so very rewarding or ignore. If we would only put the scalpel down and not feel the need to continue to dig around surgically, expecting answers from ourselves to questions that as yet have not even arisen but we put everything under that microscope.
For me a connection that I have lost very recently was one that I shared with my dog and best friend Sparkle. She died so very unexpectedly that it has left a hole in my heart that I am still struggling to fill; she was my constant companion walking along side of me wanting nothing more from me than to be loved. I am sharing this with you because we also connect with animals as well as people, it’s said that here in the UK we are a nation of animal lovers which in truth at times I question. You see a connection with an animal does not need to be that complicated it’s a mutual exchange within a bubble of complete understanding, love without demands explanations and with complete commitment on this one way street that feels so very easy to walk down. She will always be in my heart and I know that losing her made me face some very difficult choices about where my life was leading me and the direction my life will take from here on in. I am so very aware that during that time I was more than a little difficult to deal with because she was the rudder that always kept me in the shipping lane. Time heals but at times like these we sometimes question where we are in life or should I say that I did? Yes without doubt.
We need to connect to life with full commitment to a connection without feeling that by doing so a vacuum will suck us up into something that we can’t control, because anything less we will see ourselves failing simply because the need for baby steps has long past gone. We are no longer that innocent child within a world of misconnection completely confused with the world around us, and not truly making any connection other than the one which had been imposed on us as children. I guess if we were to look at this from another angle at that time in our life connection brought us pain suffering and bewilderment without a safe pair of hands to hold us. So now we no longer look for that hand because we have learnt that its safer not to do so convinced that the only hand we need to hold on to is a part of us. In laymen’s terms if a connection is not made we can’t or won’t fail by detachment and default but if we continue to follow this road it takes away from us far more than it gives. We can take a few tumbles if the road becomes rocky because it’s far better than disconnection and self imposed imprisonment of our hearts.
The soul was never meant to travel alone so take that chance……………..
We have all without doubt during our lifetime suffered a loss they are always painful and for many of us we feel that within that segment of time we will never recover. We experience it like our insides are being torn from us without pity tossed high into the storm that those emotions are creating. The sun can be shinning down on us the birds can be singing but as we look up at the sky whilst shading our eyes from the sun no answers or explanations are given. The excruciating knot within your stomach seems to be holding you to ransom and with every moment that passes becoming just that little bit tighter. Loss is so difficult for those left holding that emotion in their hands with nowhere to put it down or feel its release. There are so many ways that we experience a loss and I could only but try to examine a few here because I’m sure there are many that I haven’t experienced.
There comes a time in our lives where if the rule of thumb were to enact that we will feel the loss of our parents which is something however hard we try we can’t accept that they are really gone. If we were to turn this analogy on its head then we walk down a very dark and painful road because the loss of a child whilst we are still living has the ability to destroy us completely. If we were to take it down just a notch or two from the more extreme emotions invoked above we all feel loss in so many others ways. The loss of a wife or husband a breakdown of a relationship with the one person that we thought would be our forever life companion. There is the loss that beloved pet that also brings about a time of grief simply because they were a part of our family for some this is even more difficult if they find themselves alone when their only companion has been taken. The loss of that dream job that not in a million years had we seen that trunk coming as we sit there dazed in utter disbelief. A person we truly thought was our friend seemingly cutting us out of their lives without explanation as we sit there scratching our heads trying to unravel the mess and make sense of the situation.
Put it in a nutshell any loss we feel creates pain during that time that is so difficult to understand or deal with. Loss is always relative to us as individuals at that moment in time and felt differently by each of us there is no outright winning post around a loss. Each one sitting on high clutching a gold medal we will always feel the pain of its enactment.
But there is a loss that I would like to talk about here today felt so deeply in its magnitude that it is immense, it’s the loss of a segment of time that no matter how hard we try we can never ever recover. Those years that are lost to us forever within and surrounding abuse simply taken from us and even if our abuser were to try they could never give them back. For many this loss is something that they will never really come to terms with because we choose to ignore that passage of time it’s painful to even try to recover that which is lost to us. But in all truth if we ever in time arrive at that point in our lives where we feel we can try we see that in fact it’s a hurdle that we have already climbed over, We had just lacked the courage before today or stood close enough to see the other side. The truth is it’s just not possible to reclaim those years we mourn; it would be like finding a unicorn in our back garden or a pot of gold at the bottom of the rainbow. We would be chasing a dream that could never be realised; our abuse is part of what makes us who we are today. Once we can get our heads around that fact we can then start to live the life that we have left and move forward, not forever trying to reach back to a place of pain that we can choose to close the door on if we could only find the handle.
For all of us we have or had a mountain to climb and yes it’s so much harder to climb up then keeping looking at the downward slope below us, it’s the easier root by comparison and yes it takes less effort but for sure much less growth. If we continue on in the belief that we can’t accept our loss and that we are never able to make a stance then we will never know where that route may have taken us. When Dorothy started her journey along the yellow brick road she had no way of knowing its destination but she just kept walking, and as we are aware taking that first step on that winding yellow road allowed her to find all she needed to ultimately find her way home.
I would like to share with you a conversation I once had with a guest on a radio show that still stays with me daily; I may have even touched upon it many moons ago because it reached down in to my very core. It stays with me because of its complete sadness and the loss of so many years that could have been lived; this particular lady could not find a way to move forward no matter whatever she tried to do so, at the risk of repeating myself I could not think of a better illustration to be drawn upon. She had been abused as a child by her stepfather; for many years and her mother was also a victim of his abuse physically, she was in a helpless situation not able to defend herself or her mother. At the age of fourteen she ran away from home to live on the streets where she had to survive alone ducking and diving just getting by day by day as it arrived. She found herself within the world of drugs drinking and pulled into the world of prostitution and that’s how she lived her life for so many years. But she could never really forget or move past her abuse and the loss of her childhood years, it was eating her up day by day no matter how she tried she was not able to mourn the loss of those years. She felt their loss always within her grip held tightly within her so close to her that she was control when in truth however sad the situation she was in it was in fact the complete opposite.
At the age of twenty she could not longer live with the pain that she was carrying with her and so she made a life choice, she went and found herself a gun and returned home in an attempt to reclaim her life and the years she had lost. I don’t feel the need to elaborate on the outcome on her arrival but was that the right choice for her? Well she asked me that very question during a live radio show from where she was incarcerated and it caused me to take a step back in time to a place where I had often thought that would be my only way out of my own abuse. After a moment’s thought although for me it seemed like I had being sitting there with one finger in my ear without a reply seemingly coming to my aid, sputtering about trying to form the words to answer her heartfelt question. I then realised that it was not a question that I could be rushed into replying to this was her life now, and for the next fifteen years I needed to give it some serious thought. It then came to me in a flood of emotion that he had taken all those years from her during her childhood and here he was taking fifteen more albeit by her actions. She would never have recaptured or relived those years and the sadness of it was that there were more lost years in front of her. While my own thoughts were could I take another’s life whilst within rational thought? The answer was that she clearly wasn’t and I recognised that it could have so easily have been me. We must all have a breaking point that once reached we can’t find our way back from and I will openly admit to you here that I cried a few tears at the end of that particular show.
Yes any loss is immensely painful and for us none more so than the loss of the years at the hand of our abuser and the gigantic hole it has left within us. But the story I have shared with you above shows just how far we can be driven if we can’t find a way to come to terms with our loss of these childhood years. If we keep reaching back believing it’s possible to retrieve those years lost we will also lose those years out in front of us without the need of ever having seen the inside of a prison cell. Life by its very nature will continue to cause us pain through experiencing a loss but I personally see no need to drag it along by the hand indefinitely.
We will all mourn many a loss as we walk along the life path that is ours whilst sobering never needing the finality of death………
The first thing that comes to mind is that it is a wounded attachment at first meeting, but it’s also a merging of empathy because you know for sure that the other person has walked in your shoes. You don’t need to explain how it feels to be abused; you’re never going to feel judged because words are not needed only the knowledge shared between two broken souls. But within that mix there is also a mirror image reflecting back to us the things that you have tried so hard to either forget ignore or hide from. This way of living has been perfected over many years you truly have it down to a true art form, and you may even of sorts have become a connoisseur at your selected choice. I’m aware that the word connoisseur is mainly associated with food but believe me abuse leaves behind a very bad taste in your mouth. So is this an unconscious way or choice of being attracted to or attached to someone that reminds us of our wound or trauma? At its very core maybe we even seek out this type of relationship as a way to reinforce the wounded aspect of ourselves.
As a depending chid we yearn for affection attention neutering love and trust in a way that any other child would.
As we grow we begin to believe that the only way it seems we can receive these surely needed emotions is through our abuser. So it’s hardly surprising that we take this distortive mixed up thought process or belief with us in to adulthood, even though our sexual abuse is no long a part of our lives the child remembers. As you continue to read thought this piece and I try to impart some insight to its regard, let’s think upon this scenario as it truly is by being timed two. It’s a scary thought for sure but having myself been thought the impact of the above, I also know that it does not have to be a situation in which we either self destruct, or impose the same reaction in another person. It can be a situation if used positively for the greater good in our own lives as well as in the life of that someone special. But it’s also a situation that brings forth a challenge without doubt and that challenge at times can feel unparalleled.
So how do we judge love? What does that word even mean to us? How do we separate the good from the bad the past from the present? How do we open up to someone without feeling that we are once more going to feel a loss of control and power? It’s a real twister that could emanate a tsunami. I guess it’s true to say that I still struggle a little with these emotions myself as I try to perfect the effect still felt at times on my inner child. I recently realised that this may be a life time of work and not an easy job. But over every hurdle that we are made to jump that’s one less out there in front of us. But this is only true if we learn from the mistakes we are making, and that we ascertain the part we play in this encounter, because this traffic is on both sides of the road bound for heaven or hell. For some this is a difficult task because any feeling of loss of control or power is a reminder of the past where we had no power or control at all. But that is such a dangerous place to frequent and sadly it lays foul to a very lonely existence.
If I were to try and explain the journey I took and continue to make to you here, then I truly feel that you are not yet in a place to make that journey. You will arrive there in time and at your own speed but there are so many other lessons to learn along the way that you are able to make a change. One of the biggest leanings for me is that I had to stop feeling that I was always right, and that I did not want to entertain another’s point of view that was different to my own why? Because for so very many years I was made to feel like I was always wrong. Everything was orchestrated for me I was told what to do how to do it and how to feel my thoughts were never my own. I would have made many mistakes on my life’s journey I am sure, wrongly arriving at a regretted impasse but I will never know because that courtesy was never given to me. In essence I’m saying that I was never allowed to make a mistake or one that I recognised, if someone else is controlling your life how can you ever think of your actions and mistakes as being your own? Whilst all along thinking that I was the mistake how mixed up is that? Sympathy has no place here only a feeling of growth I’m just stating a fact and the way I was made to feel. There is a very odd thought going through my head at this moment did that enforced situation make the decisions I had to make thought life as an adult far more difficult? I’m sure for many it does because how do you learn without feeling the mistake was your own? It’s an odd kind of control but we have to remember our abusers had full control. So at the time of our release from our enforced situation do we really have the grounding we need to go forth in life? I’m just looking at the other side of the coin here or as they say outside the box.
Ok I’m back to me arriving at that time and accepting that I was not the oracle and that I can be wrong as often as I’m right but that’s ok. It may not make a lot of sense but it’s all a part of regaining control over our lives by owning who we really are. In truth at that time where did that get me? What did I achieve? And overly more why at the time did it matter to me so much? Looking back I was up there on my soap box a very lonely person, and I’m sure from my own experience that’s a journey that nobody hopes to make.
So is it time to stop thinking? Well what I really mean is stop over thinking? I know but I’m not trying to confuse you. When we become all consumed within the struggle we were made to contend with at such an early age, how do we even know the right type of relationship we are looking for? I’m just going to put this out there in the universe that we don’t need to over think; we just need to live our lives as the rest of our life. Every relationship has to be worked on; some of the most rewarding work that I have been involved in, has been around and still is within relationships where both partners have been abused children. When they eventually get it right having fallen many times along the way it’s a joy to be seen.
So here we are at the bottom of this piece with the heading sitting up there in front of me (The Relationship between Incest Survivors)
Can it work? You are a person and not your abuse so firstly we need to stop looking at the label, and look for a kindred soul an abused soul or not. Once we realise this then we will see no reason for this relationship not to work and it can be the most rewarding. A common goal is already there we need to heal and so much is already shared within, but the kicker is that shared understanding of each other also includes our past abuse. But if we are ever going to make that stand if we are going to fight for the right to be happy I think two pairs of hands are always better than one.
Have you ever played chess? In this relationship you already know the opponents end game play……………
I guess the title of this piece is a little confusing how can you find something that to your mind isn’t lost? There you are standing in familiar surroundings and your reflection if sought after would be very easy to achieve. But what does that tell us? Only that you are in the moment and visible to others. It’s a reality that we think about pragmatically it a complete certainty both feet are firmly placed below us. But what I want to talk about here today has no resemblance to the above. Your reflection can be staring back at you wide eyed and smiling but in truth for so many of us we have never felt so lost. To truly become visible to all that surrounds us we have to recognise that we are more than the body we walk around in.
It’s not about the person staring back at you each morning whilst you brush your hair; it’s about the child within that has never been found because in truth she scares us just a little. That’s a sentiment that I freely share with you because my child within used to scare the hell out of me-so was I lost? You can bet your life on it. Until I really looked inside with a feeling of complete abandonment to match her own she was unreachable. It’s been said that to really know someone you have to walk a mile in their shoes, to really understand the emotions that dictate who they are at that given moment in time. Emotions are how we relate in any given manner time or place which will never be seen from the naked eye looking in.
For all intensive purposes our bodies serve as a shell containing so much more than our internal organs. It wraps around us as an outer barrier a safeguard there to protect everything within, although at times that barrier whilst open to the elements of life can get a little busted up or bruised. Our bodies react to the action that we require almost by remote control. We have been subjected to a learning process from the very first time we arrived into this world with most of us seemingly upset to being ejected from a place of warmth and contentment.
Ok, let’s move on to the things that seem to need our direction a process that requires us to make a judgment we are faced with this process each and every day without exception. It could be a work issue that requires considering because there is more than one option, it can be to embark on a journey that we are not familiar with. A measured judgment to ascertain what is needed to lead us through a process to its completion. This process of judgement can ultimately affect those around us but a judgement is required because without which there would be no movement.
So here we are standing tall and taking on the world with health good judgement and forward movement-but what if you’re not? Let’s think about something here for a moment what if ever decision you make seems to be the wrong one what if your thoughts don’t even feel like they are your own? What if your thoughts and emotions are just so muddled and confusing that you find yourself with no control? What if that seems to be a permanent situation that you have to struggle through every day? I guess what I am talking about is that control over your thoughts and emotions in large part were enforced upon you?
As children we are so very vulnerable to the outside elements feelings and emotions going on all around us. We have been taught through our growth that an adult should be adhered and to show respect. So when an adult tells you that touching you in those places is only natural and that what they are doing to you is ok. It’s the only way to show you their love for you because you are special and different than the rest. But that we can’t tell a soul because we would then be parted and no one would understand our love. This situation a conversation forced on us daily and that no one will ever love you as much as they did.
Wow writing that paragraph has really left a nasty taste in my mouth.
What I am trying to say here is that we grow with no control over our thoughts or emotions, and if we were to look back in time that was the very moment that we lost ourselves. Our thoughts and emotions have been in doctored upon us for some of us that abuse lasted for many years going unchecked. This process leaves an imprint so deeply imbedded within us that to think for ourselves seems unnatural and not necessary. For me that situation went on for a period of seven years where a singular thought or checking my emotions was not my job and that they weren’t supposed to be mine. Just how messed up does that sound? Here today I fully understand the reason that I allowed my abuse to continue but let’s not open that box today.
In truth as we grow it seems that we become less attractive to our abuser he is getting just a little bored so within the realms of a very sick mind he needs to move on to pastures new. But when this happens what do we do? We are left to fend alone in a world that is so unfamiliar to us because we were always guarded. We then find that we have to make decisions that were always made for us. The ground below us then becomes so very unsteady because the hand that used to direct us is gone, in a mixed up kind of way we feel deserted we wonder what we have done to deserve this abandonment. How confused as children must we be to think that the person that was abusing us was our hold on to the world around us?
Its right there in that moment in time that we lose you because we don’t really know who we are or even feel that we have a purpose in the world any longer. So we continue through life never really thinking that anything we did was not good enough and questioning ourselves daily. We try to stay out of our thoughts because there are just too many voices that you don’t want to listen to, they lead us towards confusion they then take us to a place that we can’t understand or unravel. Then we would be truly lost because we were only holding on by the slighter of grip just one slip and it would all be over.
But do we want to stay that way holding on to life within mixed emotions and missed direction? How can we live the rest of our lives to its full potential like that? Yes you are lost but nothing is written in blood that you have to continue to be so. It’s long past time to find that part of you that has been lost for so long through the actions of another. We will need to dig deep because it’s we alone that will need to get down and dig in the dirt. This has to happen if we are ever able to look at that child straight on and fully in the eye. Completely and fully aware of the daunting task that needs to be embarked upon, but it’s a very necessary one if we wish to grow as a person and heal the past. You may even find that once you have found that lost part of you recognition seems impossible who is this person? But if we treat it like we are making a new friend in time a merger will occur and you will find that for the first time in your life you feel whole.
You may even find that you really like this person that you are becoming in your own right………..
Anger is a natural responce to feeling attacked deceived or frustrated; everyone gets angry sometimes that’s life and it’s a part of being human. Furthermore it’s not always a bad thing it can be a useful emotion. It allows us – if we listen to it – to identify problems within our lives that are either hurting us or others because it is going unchecked. If this then becomes a learning curve by identifying and recognising that our anger is upsetting either ourselves or those around us in an exaggerated manner. It can then act as a mirror by bouncing back those reflections and we become aware of some bad habits that need our full attention. But we need to remember that mirror may as well be a brick wall if we don’t engage with the reflection. There are times when the anger emerging within us can act as a defence mechanism appearing suddenly out of the blue if we are feeling threatened. So as we see anger it very much a part of our lives even when it upsets the apple cart for that brief moment in time.
Anger can at times evoke a real feeling of fear within us even if we are the ones at that time with a ball of fire in our gut that we can’t seem to put out. Whoever is the instigator of this on-set of emotions it can’t fail to act as a Wirral wind dragging in those around us which serves to remind us of the plight of Dorothy in the wizard of ozz. Tempers become frayed and the scene that presents itself seems to have taken on a life all of its own. We then reach a standoff where neither either nor all wants to be the ones that seem as if they are backing down. It becomes a matter of principle where the rights or wrongs of the whole situation are lost to us. A line in the sand has been drawn in which no one by it being either dragged pushed or willingly will cross over. The truth is that if we were to step back and view this situation with our emotions intact we would be astounded by the complete loss of rationality. The issue that caused this eruption has been lost only to be replaced by the overwhelming feeling of being proven to be right beyond all doubt.
Ok, we have all at some point I’m guessing been in many situations that I have described above one in which once we step off the moral high ground and stick a few plasters over the wound we then move. But sadly for others it is never going to be that easy why? The wound is so very much deeper and the cuts inflicted feel like they are never going to heal. But the real truth surrounding this situation is that the wound is far from being new it seems as if it’s always been there and rightly so because it has. So as life imposes new situations upon us that reflect the above the knife is driven in so very much deeper. To state the obvious those wounds remain unseen but the pain that they create is unimaginable. If I were to take a look within me there are a few real battle scars that many a Viking would be proud of. This type of anger is so very difficult to explain and so very destructive that it can be likened to a kind of cancer eating away at our very being. Furthermore this type of anger is one in which we readily seem to top up much like our mobile/cell phone credit as each year passes us by unchecked. This repeat scenario continues to go right on past us time after time and will continue to do so until we deal with our deep seated anger by becoming conscience of it and able to engage with it.
We seem to be within a struggle to become dogmatist because within this emotion we are going to stay on the moral high ground come hell or high water. No one will even come close to pushing us off because that’s a fall we can’t comprehend why? Because we feel that our anger is justified but the question being begging here is – is it being placed within the right situ? We fight to stay up there on that high ground because gods forbid if we were to fall we will have to deal with the real cause of our deep seated anger. In truth it has nothing to do with the situation surrounding us at that time, but it has everything to do with the anger we feel within which if we were to recognise is directing purely at ourselves. So how do we remove that feeling of immense agitation and pain from our lives which is the real root cause of so much anger? Anger placed there so long ago by another which clearly doesn’t seem to alter even after so many years as to how we feel. Even though they may no longer be integral in our lives or a spectator to our actions they have with no doubt left us with this legacy. So when we look in the mirror of reflection we feel so very angry at ourselves although unjustly because it was something in which we had no control over. But there you sit although you are now an adult questioning yourself daily over who is hitting you over the head the hardest? When in truth you already know the answer and it’s a wonder that you can even wield a hammer of that magnitude! When you have been abused as a child you will always be the one wielding that stick with far more force than the outside world. I myself am so very aware that there was a time in my life where there was not enough angry to be mustered around the world to equal the anger that I was directing at myself.
So let’s pick at the bones of this very volatile situation together to see if there is any real insight to be found.
The truth is that we put everything and anything in place so readily to be angry about instead of recognising our own anger within because we feel that we just can’t go there. Even more so we just don’t feel that we need to do so anyway right? So we direct our anger at the world in totality. The awful things happening around the world that can only be seen as a travesty but we somehow we make it our own personal crusade. The guy that parks in the parking space that you were waiting for patiently! Hey could he not see that you were already there waiting. Something said directed at us that causes a reaction within that can only be seen as being totally over the top. You have been sitting in the doctor’s surgery for twenty minutes after your appointment time and you can feel your angry erupting from within than bang it’s out there without the need for an introduction. It would seem that deflection is our closest ally.
I am in no way shape or form trivialising the deep regret for mankind around these issues because in truth there are some pretty horrific things going on around the world, or the annoyances we feel by feeling that we are being overlooked or invisible. What I am talking about here is our own avoidance and displeasure at us which surrounds the anger that we feel so deeply in which we are struggling to own. Because anything real to get our teeth into shifts the goal post by miles and then we have justified angry totally unrelated to us. So we go on day after day not having to deal with or recognise the real issue that is eating us up with such vigour.
Until we reach a place where we can face our angry and try to understand it the world will always feel as if it’s beating down on our head even though it’s mostly at our own hands. For me the place to start was by embracing my anger fully and without question which then allowed me to make forward movement towards undoing that knot tied so deeply within. Admitting to and owning that angry is one hell of a big obstacle to climb over because make no mistake that anger is truly justified and when faced with our past its more than a little scary. But it’s you and you alone that will have to make the biggest decision of all – can you face it embrace it and most importantly once faced can you put it down? At this moment in time you may not feel ready to take that first step in that direction but trust me it’s achievable overly more you can walk the road at your own pace. That road doesn’t even need to be straight one there is nothing wrong with taking a detour. If I can say anything to you in the here and now it’s that what lies behind us we can’t change what lays before us to some extent we can’t predict but what lies within us we can learn to embrace.
Own the anger within because until you do so it will always own you…………..
Running scared… those words are spoken often for a variety of reasons and each one can equally affect our lives, in truth far more than the first interpretation that enterers our mind. Someone running scared from something or someone that puts them in fear; it’s tangible and seen openly with our own eyes. It’s a threat that plagues our equilibrium whilst putting us in a place that we would rather not be. The balance of our lives is upset by needing nothing more than our own thought process. The threat does not even need to be visual why? Because we know it’s out there the treat was all we needed to create a place of panic that seems to morph in magnitude daily.
We can be running scared within a situation of competition and the catalyst needs to be no more than the person standing in front of us; we have all see it happen on our television screens with regard to a football match or tennis tournament. Once fear enters our minds we believe that we can’t win so we start to run, we don’t need to be moving in forward motion for that to occur. We are running from defeat quite simply put once we feel that emotion it affects everything we do from then on in. So we stand there with cause and effect! Our bodies remain trying to battle it out although all seems lost, but you can be sure that all that we are within is already strides ahead of us heading for the highway.
Someone breaks the law and they are being chased by the police in very hot pursuit they are seen by the naked eye as really tearing up the asphalt. But metaphorical it’s far more than that; they are running within a precise state of mind that we would only experience if we were the person doing the running. As they try desperately to think of a way out of this situation but it’s an impossible task because within that state of mind we all make mistakes. Mistakes that may take away their liberty but their judgment is impaired simply because they are running scared. They are all but lost because once this process has begun its one hell of a job for our bodies to keep up with that runaway mind.
There are so many ways in which we find ourselves running scared; I myself was in a position of doing so but for a very different perspective than any of the above. I was running from myself but make no mistake I was truly running scared. I was running like the hounds of hell were close behind me without me even being aware of it for so many years. It’s an emotion that I know I shared with others whilst I was still within it; it’s an emotion that others are still struggling with trying to find the winning post daily. But running from ourselves is an action that we will never shake off until we ourselves put on the brakes. Until that time we may as well be running within the ray’s of full sun light whilst trying desperately to avoid our own shadow. In truth there is nowhere to run from your thoughts which are creating this urge within because they will always be part of you. We try so many ways to distract ourselves for even an hour’s worth of clear head space but running from the memories that surround our abuse just isn’t possible. We have to find a way to live with them that allows us to move beyond that place with acceptance because we can’t change the past no matter how hard we try. I myself spent so many years believing that I was just fine until I found a way to understand that I was anything but.
Our greatest tool that we use is the tool of delusion as it suits our purpose well. If to the outside world we seemed in complete control then we were weren’t we? If we play the fool play the joker with all around us enjoying the show what more proof do we need? We fill our lives to the brim leaving not one ounce of space to allow these thoughts within us to breathe, so of course we were winning weren’t we? We don’t talk about it why the hell would we? That only serves to remind us that we have a deep unresolved emotion within that is really affecting our lives. Then there is that old faithful the bottle because if we climb within one we are completely sheltered from the world nothing can touch us. Well at least until the bottle had all but gone and been replaced with the hangover from hell. There are so many more distractions that I myself used whilst on my own journey all clearly aimed at my own mental confusion. A confused mind was so much better than allowing me to think about the whirlwind that was going on inside of me during every wakening hour or sleeping moment. It’s difficult to really state here the mental distress or derangement that we find ourselves in on this ever ending road so far away from the finishing tape. The truth is that we pass by it daily over and over but we are just too afraid to break through.
So how do we find the strength to stop running? We must be so clearly out of breath on this self imposed marathon. But even then it somehow seems that we have accepted that we will always be in the race. So let’s put it down here and now in print as to why we feel this need deep within our gut to keep running? It’s without doubt that we are running from the agonizing memory of our abuse its right there behind us hot on our heels; it’s so very easy to see that standing still is a terrifying prospect. But if we are ever going to find peace within this world we need to find a way of allowing them to catch up and to be embraced. The first time I came close to really understanding that all I needed to do was stand my ground it was not an option for me. But I could slow down just a little couldn’t I? After time I found that it was possible to stand still just for a moment and wow it was a complete revelation to me. It was at that time that I realised just how out of control my life really was and always had been. It seemed for most of my life I had been a guest at the mad hatter’s tea party and Alice in wonderland had nothing on me.
What I am trying to say here is that it’s ok to take each day as it arrives at a speed that you are comfortable with, just a tiny almost invisible notch slower every day will make the task achievable. There will be days when you feel it may be possible, and there will be others you will find that you don’t have a cat in hells chance. But each time you achieve a moment where you are able to stop and catch your breath you will acquire the knowledge that this is something you can do. You may take off again like a bat out of hell but you have achieved something that until that very moment in time was lost to you. It’s only then that you realise that it is possible to win this race because you were the only one that you were ever competing with.
You have been running with the finishing tape within your sight always now it’s long past time to break through……….
Being believed is something that I guess most of us take for granted unless we have been proven to lie or exaggeration, which if we are honest we all do at times its just to what degree. There’s that time when the truth can be hurtful so we adopt what is called a white lie where someone’s feelings need not be hurt unnecessarily. Examples – Do I look fat in this dress? I dyed my hair and it’s not what I was expecting do you think it looks alright? Do you like my new boyfriend but you think the guys a jerk? Ok I guess a little more honesty is needed there but I’m sure you get the gist. We interact daily with our friends family work colleges, and those that we surround ourselves with as a matter of course never in doubt that we are being believed. We feel that we should be taken on face value and that our words are both factual and truthful, never thinking that the person with whom we are engaging doesn’t believe us. To evaporated further the word believe is used in many different contexts. We have all at some point recited the words we would never have believed it if we hadn’t seen it with our own eyes. I myself have been in a position where I believed in someone completely, only to realise in the course of time that I had never knew them at all I had just believed the lie of who they portrayed to be.
Then of course there is make-believe which is a tool we acquire from childhood as we act out the life being shown to us, for some we create that make-believe friend who is always with us so that we are never completely alone. We pretend acting out situations where the only limit is within our own imagination. The question may be asked of us many times as we travel through life as to if we are credible and to be believed? We have own religious belief which may differ from those around us but it’s what we believe that matters. We believe that we are capable of sorting out a particular problem that we are faced with at that moment or time. So as we can see the word believe have many facets or faces that coincide with us on a daily basis, because so many things have to be taking on face value for life to run smoothly on. It has to be that way we can’t question everything around us never having any belief because to do so our lives would come to a complete standstill. All of the above in some shape or form resonates around the word believe.
But what if you’re not believed?
A reason for annoyance as we try to get our point across knowing that we are speaking the truth, but unable to make that other person take us on faith. Maybe we even think something like hell they have known me all my life why are they questioning my honesty? Disbelief can be extremely painful because within it we are under suspicion and we feel that distrust deeply. Our word is being doubted we are being judged as someone that takes that little white lie we spoke of above much further. We find ourselves reaching out all around us for the proof we need to right this wrong. We feel slated that we are being questioned wars have been started for less. It becomes a matter of pride to prove our honesty whilst feeling completely and truly indignant. I could fill this page with analogies of how we are made to feel when we are not believed. But for some not being believed is something that we have had to contend with always. Because even if the words ever left our mouths it had been deeply impregnated within, that our words would be dismissed even before the last word left our mouth. This knowledge had been force-fed to us by our abuser so vigorously over the years that we are disbelieving of ourselves without ever uttering a word!! Just how screwed up is that?
Since childhood we have grown up thinking that we will never be believed that our spoken words would always fall on a deaf ear. It had suited our abusers quite nicely to impregnate our minds with that negativity, reminding us always that to tell would be a fool’s errand. As we grow we carry that thought process with us we may even feel that it’s too late now why? We had never spoken up. I don’t know about you but this system seems only self serving as an aid for our abuser how the hell were we lost within that structure? It’s important here to really understand the thought process that has been created within; we have been groomed into believing that our words would never find any solace. I know that deep inside of me that little girl still exists because we converse often, and I am aware she still remembers the pain of the lie she was made to live. The big difference is that she has now found her voice in a way that someone else believing is no longer important. She knows with complete clarity that belief in her has been achieved by the only one that matter herself. For many years I thought that to be believed the child within would need to speak up which some would think should be easy. You are now an adult able to speak up and say what needs to be said surely? Sadly when you approach that child in order to do so without self belief it’s as if you had never left her behind. There we stand face to face with a cloud of disbelief that unimaginable and those unforgotten words ringing in our ears.
We are never going to truly move on with our lives if it all hinges on the pure fact of being believed by others, I was myself was reminded of that very recently. To be honest it put me on my back foot as I really thought that I had moved some way forward from the need of being believed. But it only served to prove to me that there is still a vulnerable side within me, but if I choose to receive this in a positive way maybe it was a blessing. To know that the soft side of me can still embrace life alongside the child within me, who still remembers her abuse but knows with full clarity it’s only her belief that matters. So often that child is lost from within us and when that happens they take so much more with them than the memory of our abuse. They take that which allows us to feel safety within our vulnerability in honesty and in trust. Maybe it served as a poke in the ribs for me to remind me that I believed in her. There comes a point in our lives where we have to look inside and find our own answers belief in you is the only thing that matters.
Let’s really think about it.
We could have an army of believers standing right behind us shouting our innocence up at the heavens, but that will never make you feel better about yourself unless you can stand there and do so alone. So are we looking for recognition of our abuse? Do we really need it what will it change? The only recognition that is needed is crying out to be heard inside of you. If I’m honest there was many times on this journey where I even doubted myself, so tell me so how would recognition from others have helped me there? Disbelief in yourself eats away at you until you change that emotion far more then to be disbelieved by others. We will move forward only when we eliminate our own distrust in ourselves and embrace those memoires simply because we can’t change them.
Disbelief in ourselves is not even an emotion that we have created it is one that was enforced upon us over the years. Tell someone enough times that it never really happened, that it’s a false memory that you have created within and that doubt starts to creep its way in. We need to remember that if you were only a child when the abuse was part of your life manipulation is our abusers biggest gun. It sure as hell only helps them if we don’t even believe in ourselves. For so many years with regards to my own abuse it was a suppressed memory I guess that was my own coping mechanism. So is it so difficult to see that under certain circumstances doubt rears its ugly head? It would be hard to imagine a more lively debate within the realms of psychology. I’m sure we have all heard the echo in the background of false memory syndrome. It describes a condition in which a person is affected by memories that are not factually or true but ones in which they strongly believe. Wow this topic has the ability to make my skin crawl when I know that there are people out there walking round unpunished because of this analogy. Does it happen? I’m sure that is does but the effect that it has on those that have truly been abused is devastating. If we look toward a court room all the jury needs is that one fragment of doubt it then falls to us to proof that we are speaking the truth and that’s one hell of a big ask. Once more there it is again that doubt standing right in front of us reflecting that emotion back like a mirror image.
So let’s take that leap of faith here today one that you are truly capable of belief in yourself not needing anyone else to pass judgement or to believe. Having them believe won’t take away the pain you feel inside; neither will it stop those nightmares that at times may still frequent your dreams. It won’t stop the back street gossipers that dig around it the dirt without any real ability to understand. Because the absolute truth is that we can’t alter how others may think but that’s their truth which can be fixed invariable and unalterable. Given time it will become clear to you that flogging that dead horse is a pointless exercise.
But what it will do is make you whole……………..
I sit here today in front of my computer with no understanding of the place that I visited six nights ago. If I’m honest as yet I still can’t find any learning that I have acquired from it. It will it seems take me a while to try to loosing this knot before I even attempt to undo the whole. I will put down here everything within my memory with regards to my journey and its contents. That said it will be as well as I am able at this moment in time. My conclusion that I hope to arrive at is one I am still struggling to acquire, but I am hoping it’s a work in progress. As always it’s for you to arrive at your own conclusion.
I remember going to bed I was really tried and in a lot of pain which is ever present for me. What happened in between to the point to where I awoke I will depict below.
Where am I? All around me there is the fun of the fun fair the colours are so bright and vivid. Stalls in every direction rides for as far as the eye can see, people milling around happy it seems with all that surrounds them. Rollercoaster’s dipping and diving with their seats filled to the brim. But it’s silent- all around me I can see the rides I can see the lips of the people moving as they pass me by-but silence. I find myself standing at the front of a queue waiting to board the roller-coaster as it comes to a complete standstill. I lift my leg to board but the entrance is blocked before me, no matter how hard I try I can’t lift my leg high enough to succeed. People are pushing me from behind it would seem telling me to board but I’m unable. I try to tell them that I can’t hear them but they clearly don’t understand. I can’t move away from the front of the queue my legs just won’t move in that direction. I put out my hand to hold on to the side of the ride but my hand just goes straight through it. I adjust my grip to a different area but nothing around me is solid. Once more I try to lift my leg only to feel a shooting pain as if I had hit my shin; I keep trying leaning forward but I fall and the pain registers as I hit the ground. This situation seemed to continue on for it seemed like hours, me trying to get on the ride and the solid contact with the ground. Until at my last point of trying just as I am about to give up I was allowed to board. I sit down holding on to my leg trying to nurse the pain that I was feeling as the ride shoots away taking me with it.
Around and around we go stopping at different destinations for people to get on and un-board. My head is hurting such pressure and pain it feels as if it is about to explode, that noise is confusing me where was it coming from? It wasn’t close enough to identify. But in that real space and time the silence was deafening. I can’t stay here but it’s as if there are some invisible hands firmly holding me down. I can’t take anymore of this feeling of oppression at the next stop I myself would un-board. We stop and I make my way to the exit door to leave behind this roller-coaster from hell, but no matter how I try I can’t get off. Everything solid is moving around me swaying from side to side like its reacting to the sound of music that I just can’t hear. Everything I touch just becomes jelly as my hand is engulfed with it. Over and over I try to embark but they keep changing the height of the entrance door I just can’t seem to step high enough. I am once more aware of the people around me exasperated that I am holding them up but I can’t do anything. I try to talk to them once more to explain but it seems that they can’t hear my voice, and they are still mute to me whilst their lips are still visibly moving. I fall the pain registers as I hit the ground I try to get up but I can’t hold on nothings solid. I ask for help but everyone around me continues on as if I am not there. Eventually I fall through the entrance landing hard hitting my head, and the taste of blood is rancid in my mouth. I hurt all over and I am now shivering with the cold. I look down at myself and all I have on is my nightshirt. I can’t understand why or how I had arrived there like this everyone else around me were fully clothed. Why would I have left home dressed like this?
I get up and look around me suddenly I can see faces in the crowd that I recognise but they pass me by as if I were not there. I then hear the barking of a dog I know that bark it’s my own dog Sparkle. She then appears from around the corner but not alone, as dog after dog just like her run towards me in different stages of growth. I bend to touch her head but my hand passes straight through it. But even as she sits before me I can still hear a barking and whining in the distance. I put my hands on my own head trying to understand what was going on all around me.
I find myself screaming at the top of my voice whilst the ground is moving beneath me, someone else is screaming and the voice is so familiar was it me? Once more I fall jarring myself badly as I hit the floor, but I just lay there in the street as all seem to pass me by. I get up and wander around aimlessly looking for a place that I recognise a doorway back to reality where I could leave this place and return home. It all seems so real or is it’s a dream that I just can’t wake from? I shake my head whilst firmly slapping at my face willing myself out of this nightmare but to no avail. I wander around but nothing seems real, somewhat like a fun house everywhere is just so colourfully and I am drawn to it magnitude. People are laughing clearly in the throes of great fun as I walk among them and I find myself trying to fit in. But I am lost to them as I walk along like the pied piper as the various sizes of Sparkle run along side of me. Suddenly it occurs to me that I must be dead is this what the hereafter looks like? If that were so then I had to accept my end, but why I was being excluded from the fun going on around me? Why was I being shut into a place of complete silence? I sit down on the ground going into complete shutdown no longer caring anymore where I was or where I was going.
A ride arrives in front of me like an explosion how it arrived I have no clue? Someone is holding the door of the roller-coaster open for me beckoning me towards it. I don’t want to get up because I know with certainty, that even if I tried they would not let me board. I look away in the other direction somehow accepting my fate. As my eye line changes so would the entrance of the roller-coaster, jumping as if by magic each time I turned to look in another direction. Shouted at them I say that I would no longer play their game whilst refusing to move now at all. People are offering me food and drink but when I try to take it they move it further away from me. I reach down to touch my toes and they are like ice in my hand, the kind that your skin sticks to in the deepest depths of winter. Once more when I try to stand I fall it’s as if I were an entity not able to touch anything around me without passing through it. I hurt all over my body and I am now shaking uncontrollability. So did I just sit there accepting that there was no way home? Then suddenly someone or something told me that I had to try just that once more. I stood up and walked towards the door being held open for me and stepped up, something was different they were allowing me to get on was this some kind of trick? I was waiting for the axe to fall with bated breath.
The ride started to move and I sat down on the floor looking around me for something to wrap myself in to try to keep warm. I then saw a blanket but when I tried to pick it up my hand just went straight through it. Someone opposite holds out a coat for me and I reach towards it only for it to disappear. I sit down again and hug my knees against me in complete abandonment- I just did not care anymore. As we arrive at the different stops people board and un-board until I was alone. There I sat going around and around on this ride taking in all the dips and dives, by then totally uncaring if we will ever stop. Memories of the life I had lived came flooding into my mind as I recalled all the things that I had done with my life. But far more vivid were the things that were done to me, hell what did any of it matter now anyway? Suddenly the ride was slowing and I had a feeling of recognition creeping into my mind something was familiar. Trying to explain this feeling if I were reach out for the right words, maybe it was somewhat like a butterfly emerging from a chrysalis. Everything around me was happening in slow motion.
Slowly I opened my eyes like I was emerging from a deep sleep to find myself sitting in the middle of my bath tub. As I look around the room the bathroom door was closed which is something I never do, and the bathroom was a wreck. The towel holder had been pulled off the wall and the towels strewn in all directions. All the bottles of bathroom sets that had been out on display had been thrown in every direction. The toilet roll had been completely unrolled across the floor, the bathroom cabinets were open their contents all around the room. I try to stand up but the pain in my back brought me back down again hard into the tub. My lip was hurting and as I reach to touch it my finger I find a large swelling with blood still wet around it. It’s at that point my attention is taken to the pain in my legs where I could visibly see the swelling and brushing. I felt as if I were sitting in an ice box unable to make it to my feet to get out of the tub. I crawl on to my knees and reach towards the side pulling myself up in to a kneeling position. Slowly I manage to climb over the edge of the tub and on to the floor. I was then aware that it was light and that I had gone to bed at about 10.30pm the night before. The strangest thing of all is that this was the first night that I had attempted to go to my bed in over a year, because of the pain I live with daily on movement. Along with a few demons and nightmares that still frequent my dreams, which are out of my control or so it seems-so why that night? Getting to my feet I open the door to find Sparkle curled up against it and she is so clearly glad to see me. I sit on the top of the stairs trying to make some sense of the journey that I had just made but to no avail. Where had I been and why did I go there? I only know that during that time I had seen the night pass me by and the day arrive within that space of time.
Wow at this point in time I find myself questioning my own sanity? Or am I just not aware of the significance of this profound event?
I am struggling a little here as to how I am able to end this piece because it was a real experience for me, with all the terrors and unexplained happenings throughout. But oddly somewhere deep inside of me, I know that it was a journey that I was destined to make. That in time there is real learning to be found here for me. The whys and where for’s right now I am still trying to unravel in all honesty. But it is what it is and that’s what I have to contend with until that slither of light comes shinning through.
That said it’s not a journey that I ever hope to make again……………………..