THAWING

The room we chose to sleep in while vacationing in the the Adirondacks was tiny, dark, almost windowless and airless. The other two for my sons and families were large, airy and new. We felt that wing would give us space from the babies waking at night and our sons could attend to them without interfering with our sleep. 

I shut down, didn’t sleep, and felt far from home, the real structure and the one I worked hard to find inside of my own being. Three days after coming home I am still searching for the internal one.

Hung out from a place to reside brought coldness and disconnect like a ghost with nowhere to go. The cat struggled and the trip took a toll on her that she may not recover from. Feelings froze and acting like I had any took its place.

Feelings. Safety to have them. Basics like enough sleep and manageable stress. Those gifts return the moment we enter the driveway to our home. It is so good to be home. Each day brings me back into me as the frozen shell melts.

Photos from my garden and meadow

Go to the Light

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There is a part of me craving for family of origin. I dream of them, including Tom. Night after night ‘family’ enters my dreams, the wanting, the craving, the good parts of the past. Stories are concocted in the dreamworld that mimic my needs, stories that bring love and closeness. The yearning goes beyond my control into sub-consciousness. 

They interact with Tom, the abuser, more than with me in the real world. Two sister’s-in-law have acknowledged my pain, but none of ‘them.’

And they won’t. I am kept at arm’s length for a purpose, to shut me down and out. Niceties are shown to prove tolerance, a show of kindness, but no realness, no talking.

It is hitting a wall repeatedly because the wanting of family will exist till death. But my head hurts from the bruising. Go to the light. Live your life with those who want to live it with you.

The positive energy is not found from those who shut you down but those that bring light. Flagging self-esteem inside drives me to those who negate me. If you accept me, then I am alright and have finally made it. Step away from the black hole of a dark endless pit,

go to the light…

let go

FEAR and LOVE

Anxiety ruled. Fear curdled in my belly. 

Work at your day, you must. 

Easily my mind tricks me. Easily I follow the wrong path, one leading to problems, and yes, doom. I can cause my own health issues or I can solve them. 

No wonder you feel a great fear. It is a fear of myself and a lack of trust. Who is at the helm, an emotional child or a trusted adult? 

Walking the meadow sweat glistens on my back as the grasses sway in the sunny breeze. Plotting the day’s goals the list includes many self care activities interspersed with the things I love, lavender one of them. 

Spring rains have brought out abundant flowers. Each proudly stands in her glory then fades, but another takes her place. Lavender is at the forefront now and the bees know it. 

Scooping up handfuls, shaking away the bees, I chop off hunks and the basket fills, basket after basket. This year’s growth surpasses my needs and many gifts will be made. 

Glue gun on, sparkly adornments near-by along with various ribbon, my creativity is given free reign. One basket for a sister-in-law when we stay at the lake next week. Another basket for my massage therapist who will pleased to have last year’s gift replenished. And an assortment of smaller bouquets for friends when we meet later in the month. 

The house takes on the heady, intoxicating aroma of lavender, known for its soothing qualities. Amidst the day’s chores, exercises, and other needed work is the joy of nature and her gifts… 

LITTLE BALLERINA

She clasped the bouquet in her small hands, her eyes gazing at the glittery jewels. Knowing her Nana made it especially for her increased its worth. 

Only four, she happily danced on stage with her ballet class in her tutu and glowing smile.

Though I did not take dance classes, but dearly wanted to, I am able to do so now vicariously. The delicious three hour recital with music, lighting and costumes, each more bejeweled than the last, kept me in tuned to the very end.

Such beauty! Such a delight!

AGAINST THE WIND

The little girl sexually abused. She knows loneliness far before any other child, a loneliness that scrapes and claws from the inside out. A loneliness she runs from in countless ways, as many ways as there are children abused.

A little girl sexually abused now woman. She remains alone in a way no other knows and she is unable to describe it because others wouldn’t understand. Her ways of running have become more destructive because the pain and horror of what she endured was kept inside her. Her family bade it that way.

Her family bids it that way in her womanhood too, her middle age, her retirement years, and to her deathbed no one steps up to wrap her tight and say, “I am sorry.”

The ones that knew and kept silent shun her. She is shunned in subtle ways, not outright, but seedy and cowardly, like the attacker. Acting supportive like cake icing, others in the so called family really exert an undertow of control instead of true love and support. Each looks after themselves. Each interact with the attacker(s) as if nothing happened. No one wants to hear or know different.

She cries alone abandoned. It has been made to look as if she has not been abandoned. She has been… all along she has been.

It was easier to control her in childhood, to keep the secrets of what her attacker(s) had done. If out in the open it would shame them. They knew and did nothing. Or they didn’t know, but know now but nothing changes because the shame still causes them to re-victimize the woman still terrorized into silence. If I speak I will be abandoned.

That truth remains and it feels terrifying. No one will admit that this control is being exerted and no proof can be provided because each is as manipulative, hurtful, and subversive as the attacker(s) they interact with.

The one who suffered the horrors in silence knows. She knows, and she also knows she cannot talk, not now, not ever. She can never be herself around the ‘family of origin.’ She never could, could she? Once attacked, once silenced, the child she was, the woman she became, hid so far away she will never show herself to those she once called family unless it’s safe.

It never becomes safe because the shackles and chains of silence still restrain her. Her beauty goes unnoticed, worse put down. Whatever tactics it takes to silence her are tightened down until the blood of defeat flows. Your dignity or your silence?

Her only relief is to stay present in the life she has built with those not threatened by her past. Those who truly love wholly with no reserve or feelings of selfishness of what her truths might do their fallacies.   

No one came to her then. No one comes to her now. The sadness like an undertow in everyday life threatens to steal all that she has built, all that she loves. The rage of injustice can drown her. She must chart her course and not lose sight of her soul. Against the winds she will find all that she needs because she already has it anyway.

Sail steady…

Food of Life

photos by patricia

Get to the root causes of why you overeat. Yes. Feed this body so it works properly.

What about the psyche, emotions, and the soul that searches for something never found? These crucial parts still crave satisfaction and wholeness.

I eat anxiety. I eat to feel better about the little girl lost, unloved and unprotected who to this day struggles with self-esteem and so much more. It is a desire and basic need that will forever go wanting because no one can go back and make it right…or safe.

At 64 I am only just learning to be kind to myself. That is key. Yet the constant challenges of confronting that harsh voice inside remains and needs work daily questioning its validity.

Food soothes. Food quiets the voice. But then another voice booms even louder, “You are fat, you are bad!” but it is one I’m used to from the age of 8 when food numbed the horrors. I go in circles and circles.

Keep at it, keep trying.

Waking to the birds, the humidity is thick. Taking coffee to the patio, bare feet against the cool cement, the nesting mourning dove calls hauntingly and sweetly back to her mate sipping water at the birdbath. They are on nest two. At this rate they will have three families by summer’s end. A tranquility descends into my being.

Each day a mystery. Will you feel fear, or be OK? Tame the beast of impermanence. Each day a challenge wrestling with thoughts, turning them around, finding the peace restlessly craved; a quietness in the soul that when found allows textures to be felt, scents to be absorbed, and moments to be full…