PRESENCE

The body heals, but why must the mind stay broken? Broken in that it wields the power to destroy with thoughts that are negative, and lately going backwards to what one therapist used to label as ‘catastrophic thinking;’ a highly honed talent that needs to be extracted from my tool box, yet seems here to stay no matter how much work is pitted against it.

Summer, usually the most joyful because more daylight fights off winter depression which drops like a cloud in fall pressing down till spring, has brought up issues in both body and mind. But perhaps all summers have had their challenges and when we remember we forget the hardships and think of the best times?

As my body heals from the harsh divertriculitis attack, other mental challenges present themselves, but perhaps those are needed on the path to healing too. The healing of my spirit does not heal as efficiently as my body.

But isn’t that how it is for everybody? Growth is ongoing, ever-changing, and if you are aware continues till one’s last breath. That doesn’t have to be a life-sentence, but instead a life opportunity. It is just that lately the struggles seem to about sink me.

Yet up again for air. Go slow. Stay in the moment, and most of all pick up the meditation practice slipped from daily must do’s after over 20 years of diligent habit. That brings comfort but one must do it!

It brings my being to my core. Settling into it like a warm caress placing all the pieces where they belong… Pain doesn’t go away, but room is made for it. Acceptance with patience, attributes not possessed in abundance – expand- helping me to be and stay present.

Isn’t that what life is about? To be in each moment, to treasure them, live them, painful or not?

DARE TO GROW

Once again back into my core, my own mortality is grasped. Though sounding morose, it is a daily confrontation when my mind is not going in circles and peace extends herself throughout my being. It is when facing my own death each day that worries piling up dissipate because suddenly they lose importance up against the reality of the time limits of life.

My home comes back into full view, feeling the prettiness and safety. The meadow comes alive swaying in the breeze or its stillness when there isn’t any. Scents zone into my center that were always there but not noted due to fractures in my thoughts and centeredness.

My path becomes confident, the questions of how dare I do what I need to instead of what others want me to slipping away like so much waste. It is waste when putting my life in how I perceive others want me to live it.

It is my life. Choose your path and have the courage to the follow it.  Let go of Mother’s teachings: You should be ashamed of yourself. DUMMY. That’s not nice. All the requirements she had in order to feel loved or at least not abandoned.

SUCCESS

Success scares a part of me once totally unconscious of. Looking at the scale, seeing the numbers drop. Well, eat. There is something about excess weight and feelings of safety, once thinking that reason was bogus. But no, it is real. It means men looking at me, even at this advanced age.

Both flattered and fearful, taking the reins of my own path and goals anyway— success continues and the numbers decline. But as my body changes, albeit slowly, there must be time to adjust to each half pound.

Is that a flatter stomach? Is that a bone? It frightens me, yet the drive is not going away this time. And how many times since age 8 have 50 or more pounds been shed? Too many to count.

Age 8 when the attacks began, and though several living in that same house knew of my vulnerability and terror, no one helped to protect me from further trauma(s). The message, carry the burdens… which translates to repeated failure in every venture. Staying down for the ease of others means taking the hit myself.

Excess weight always brought feelings of safety along with numbing to the facts of my existence. But in unraveling the knots, going deep into my center, all things are possible. There everything needed resides. Maybe this time my parts can stay together for the very first, feeling safe, in my body, and slimmer.

Face the fear, live fully, embrace all there is. My being is as deserving of good things as any other…

The Thrill of FREEDOM

Photo by Patricia

As others congregate more, those feelings of differentness creep in. Feelings that began long ago in childhood when the blame of being attacked fell squarely on me. Or so my child’s mind believed as my mother sat across from me in my bedroom.

“Tell me anything that happens again,” she said, hot tears falling like a river down my cheeks.

No hugs of reassurance that it would never happen again. That responsibility was now on me, a child not wanting such horrors but now told it’s on you to stop it from further happening. Not possible in that prison where Chet took what he wanted when he wanted it.

From that moment the casket closed. Whoever I had been, would be, could be, was forever changed and damaged, living alone no matter how many people were around me.

But freedom. Freedom at last. The chains removed, the ball cast away. And not by their choices, the choices of the origin family that I keep the burden and secrets. But by regurgitating the truth by which I had been forced to live even into my fifties.

What’s left of origin family are three brothers who did not touch me that way. Three out of seven. And where once I thought I could love them because they had not sacrificed my well-being for their own lust, they are part of the conspiracy of silence.

Those that stand by and do nothing, no matter what the crime, are as guilty as those that commit it. Maybe more so.

I hate them. Pondering this thought while out walking the realization stuck that the hate was for the situation, prisoning the one hurt so I will not talk about it even if that means using rejection, criticism, or any psychological method possible to control me. That’s what’s hated. Love and hate, much like the relationship with my mother, now 12 years gone. More growth occurred after her death than in all the years of my life.

With her gone, so too what little love I’d ever known. But with conditions— silence. Love those that attacked you. Or pretend to, make it look like you do. Never said aloud, but very much implied even as a little girl.

Not until her death did the truth erupt. Week by week, healing chapters of my life unfolded, tears washing my grief as words like swords found their way up and out. Tar gone from inside me.

The tarry horror or what they’d done kept in all those years for the comfort of others. I began to matter. But it still took longer to begin to love myself for the first time; little sparkles of softness never felt before. A warm place internally when the going gets rough. A soft place to fall. A place that welcomes offering solace, not just for everyone else, but finally, also, for me.

Where I’m looked upon kindly, with open arms, seeing the little girl, young women, and adult honestly, with new appreciation and truth. Not the lies told by every member of the origin family, pretending to care, but really finding ways to keep me down. A toxic paradox impossible to dissect unless connected to one’s soul.

A place unknown to me until recent years. That place speaks from other than the head or mind. It is a gut feeling without words, and it says, STAY AWAY. You call the shots. They do NOT. No longer a buoy toppling in wild waves that you can shove about whenever you feel like it or need something. I get a to say if, when, where, or NO. What I need. What I want. Shocking the shit out of any one of them.

Their strands of cobwebby material do not break. Become entwined and you’re dead figuratively. It is freedom that thrills me. My own thinking, being here now, giving up worrying as much as possible, and allowing it to be OK to be alive and be happy.

SAFE ZONE

Snow Drops, photo by Patricia

Each day a gift to open, unwrapping moments with care, working at being there for each one. Yet often having to shake myself from a deep reverie some call dissociation. Still going to that safe place, perhaps more now due to the changing season coupled with tumultuous weather, needing a safe zone where the winds don’t blow.

SCREAM

Edvard Munch 1893

My life has been one long silent scream.

That no one heard, not even me. In my need, where were you?

I told you, and you, and you. And you knew too.

What did you do?

Nothing.

And that is what became of me.