Countering the critic continues, because how could a woman of 67 need to block a sender because she felt caught off-guard and it seemed like the only way to protect herself?

Yet that is my dilemma, being incapable of self-protection. Others want closeness and because it is wanted by another, like a bobbing buoy in the water, I acquiesce. It has always been that way after the years of molestation when my body was not mine, and no one seemed to care.

I was not taught the simplicity of owning my feelings, body, mind, and spirit. Give them to others like my being does not matter. And be quiet.

My shoulders bent under the weight of it. But these past months my shoulders straighten as the load was left behind and wonders await for my exploration and enjoyment.

That doesn’t mean life is easy because permanent PTSD issues interrupt daily, and sometimes, like the last few days, come roaring back; screaming when Samuel suddenly appears in a doorway, lack of sleep when worries cave in, scared of a waving bush in the meadow, the fright of it being a man hiding to hurt me making my heart race…just too easily aroused, and on edge with my system on high alert even more than usual. 

Do I use kindness and gentleness towards my affliction caused from trauma early on? No, I try but lose to the overdose of stimuli that invades even here in this peaceful place. The ‘critic’ attacks relentlessly. When going astray on my path, the internal voice of reason comes alive when my head hits the pillow and no amount of marijuana oil banishes it.

Finally realizing that blocking someone after initiating a conversation— my doing, was not a way that worked for me. But there is a need for my voice to be heard over someone who feels threatening. Blocking her in any way is tricky when she is married to a brother where feelings of indebtedness lie deep.

Don allowed me to live with him and his first wife for months during a time when chaos reigned. My mother’s drinking was out of control after the loss of Danny from suicide. My college days were done, choosing to come home after his death then staying.

Don plucked me up to live with them, possibly worried he’d lose a sister too after losing his twin. There are some people who have intervened in my life and ‘saved’ me with their kindnesses. He is one of them.

So to be unkind to his wife, is being unkind to him. And that matters now, even though the last 11 years after our mother’s death we have been estranged. The emotions during her decline caused a rift between us that never healed.

But now there is hope for some reconciliation. Reclamation.

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