photo by Patricia
What is the fear erupting each day crackling just below the surface- ruminating, festering, and growing instead of abating? Talk yourself out of it. Calm the anxiety even if it can’t be named.
Carrying it with me, because there is no ridding myself of it, the sharp buzz lessons with familiarity. The fear sometimes rises, sometimes diminishes, but is always there.
If only it could be named. When standing at the cusp of change, a shift in growth can cause unease. Dare to put one foot forward. But what if I fall? Perhaps, just perhaps, let deep whispers flow, and quiet the mind. The directives rising from the source defy logic authenticating my being. Listen. Pay attention. And trust it.
To go against the flow of other’s expectations according to how I’ve acted in the past, to make changes that are in my best interests instead of putting the wishes of others ahead of my own… it takes great energy and courage. It is scary as if the ground is shifting beneath my feet.
The uneasiness is unsettling, not a feeling to get used to, yet is a feeling worth identifying and managing because the changes are healthy ones. All eventually benefit from it though they might not know it now. The forces levied to keep me in my ‘place’ are difficult to resist, yet the instinct driving me is reliable, authenticating my being.
The more I change the more others resist too, and the pressure increases to keep things the same. Eventually, if I keep at it, my growth will be accepted, acknowledged and respected. I am the one that must do that first.
The mire of confusion this brings makes my brain weary with too much thought. In prayers to my earth mother I ask for help and guidance. The conjuring, or attempts to conjure a oneness with the universe in a form that feels safe to me, offers a minuscule bit of warmth. Contentment flows in with the surety of the whispered words, simplify, keep it simple. Follow your whispers as they are your soul’s words of guidance and can be trusted.
The days grow shorter, darkness consumes me, fears hover over every moment needing constant diligence to sweep away; fears of dying, doing wrong, being wrong. The kernel of warmth that began to soothe my being with self-acceptance all too quickly disappears, and only coldness is left behind. The same coldness I’ve lived with since age 8 when I left my body.
Go back to the body. Breathe. This moment matters. You’re alright. An area in my jaw where gum surgery took place ached again. It was probably unneeded surgery that could have killed me because I kept popping Xanax on the way there. She had to administer oxygen during the procedure.
The culprit for the pain might be from jaw clenching while sleeping when under stress. The stress of agreeing to come to a holiday gathering of the three siblings and their wives caused an extreme duress in the core of my being… but I didn’t know it.
I was not taught to be aware of my feelings, body and or spirit. I was taught to be in opposition of everything that is mine. I was taught to be a robot. Say please, be pleasing. Don’t be.
To come to myself, to my body, spirit and soul…. To say no? It unclenched that jaw and the pain is gone. I feel peace. I still wonder what I’m doing wrong that I can’t get along with them, or many others, yet what I’m doing must be right for me. My body tells me so.
After rage fizzled out a great sadness filled in, what was, and what could have been. Grief permeated every muscle, fiber and bone of my being, the authenticity of it flowed from every pore even as I went about other more pleasurable past-times.
“You seem sad,” a fellow writer commented at one our gatherings.
A small group of us met weekly after the writing class came to a close. We gathered at a coffee shop to share our work and hear critiques over cups of fresh brew. My book continued to erupt chapter by chapter, week after week. With the writing classes, the writing group, and finally an editor, the quality of the book’s contents grew into a finished product.
The sadness remained afterwards these past seven years, sadness that had been a searing rage. Then it lifted. A peace flows where sadness was. The bite from the apple of self-liking led to wanting more.
When the voices come each day that say ‘you’re bad, worthless, nothing,’ there is a pause then a soft voice interjecting the truth. You are worthy, a person to be proud of, a whole human being of worth and substance who has weathered a great storm with grace, dignity and kindness. Be proud of who you are and what you’ve overcome.
The rage hid all these things from myself, yet there was no other way. This was my path. To go back no other path would be found to try again. Those boys did not mean to hurt me. They lusted after their needs and in those very human drives hurt me in ways life-long.
My path had to take this long, perilous, agonizing, and terrifying, it had to be so.
photo by Patricia
The feeling of differentness so acute as a child suffering sexual attacks by my siblings arises sharply at times. Many feelings from then still linger, stabbing into my present life. Unprocessed traumas and all the feelings with them didn’t dissipate but grew with me.
Yet no gentleness exists. It is a habit to beat myself up when today’s issues erupt emotion from childhood wounds. There is no conscious link to them. That is changing. There are reasons sleep is interrupted. Wounds untended in childhood along with a stolen voice caused an inseparable rift within; deep wounds and no way to them. I am mute to the world and mute to my soul.
Wounds fester and when touched with present hurts the pain expands exponentially. It is like placing an already burnt arm on a hot stove. The present slides away as the psyche escapes elsewhere. If a person is talking, what is said is not heard.
Self-loathing because the feeling of differentness is so acute is not what the wounded child needs. And she exists within me and will always be there. She needs what you did not receive then. Since there was only one urgent unspoken rule to not speak of it, there is no one to emulate a pattern of how to be gentle with myself.
It is a new road with little to go on except the times my mother extended gentleness in adulthood. There were moments when she tried, maybe to make up for the past.
photo by Patricia
Some relationships spin the same old way no matter how much effort is put into change. Haunts from the past infect today. Little hurts inflame old unprocessed trauma. Sleep will not come, or upon waking in the night will not return.
A small infraction causing hurt by a loved one sets off the alarms yet it is ringing unaware until nighttime when tiredness setting in meets adrenaline.
You loser, you weirdo, you bad mother, wife, friend, and the bashing goes on. Feelings have overridden behaving in a way to feel proud of. Or shadows of them because the behavior has improved but no credit is given for the strides made. The mind goes off far down the painful road of self-loathing, and I feel lost. Help me, in the night the prayer is murmured.
This has been a usual occurrence for years but the last months a healthy sleep pattern has developed. My belief is that has much to do maturing hence feeling more at peace with myself. To lose it and not know why upsets all routines and body systems, but also most painful, must somehow be my fault. Is it? Or is it unprocessed trauma which goes beyond my conscious choice or control?
Wake and start again. May your first thought be, “Forgive. Be gentle. How gentle, loving and accepting can you be toward yourself today after the sins you think you committed yesterday?” And are they such sins? Or is your humanness still not allowed in your own mind.
photo by Patricia
The path to the core becomes tangled, blocked by memories, though the soul goes there to hide. So one resides in a place that can’t be found. No way in, no way out.
She peeks out at times. Maybe there is someone to trust, who takes her hand and guides her. Even so, the world is tough and into hiding she goes.
It may never be safe to come fully out. Maybe only in solitude does she find her soul, a safe haven to breathe, connect and become who she was meant to be.
It is these roots that save her. The very place she runs from, the memories which are a part of her history locked deep below. The same place where she hides.
Coming out she looks below and runs. Yet that is where the strength comes from and has kept her here all along. It is in what she suffered that makes her strong and who she is. It is her history that makes her beautiful.