Time and again attacked. Coming up for air as if almost drowned, gasping for breath, even if figuratively, that was my childhood. Interspersed were moments of great joy, galloping my horse down the meadow path, long hair flying back, sweat glistening on my brow, and the horse’s skin… life became black or white, joyful or terror filled.
Where is the love others freely feel and give? Hidden away to preserve what is left. Yet compassion? Rage sometimes directed my behavior. Tempering that rage took great resolve. But something else. It took compassion. Not for myself, it was for others.
The attacking siblings did not rip that well of compassion from me. My essence is made of compassion. Compassion kept me whole inside my brokenness. When it matters, warmth overrides aloofness dissolving my chilly armor.
Exhaustion runs deep, into my core, my blood, bones, every atom of my being. I am tired. Even with enough sleep, I am tired. Winter’s weariness? Failures of self?
“It hard being me,” I lament to a friend, and whisper out-loud to the gods. It is hard being me, and I’m tired of it.
My thoughts tend to believe the worst every time, and that tendency consumes me in winter. Bleakness of soul matches the frigid temps. The havoc of this engulfs me in ways that wreck relationships. Others there willing to love, offering warmth and real caring, are shoved away brusquely. My best feature is turning away from you coldly.
Is that all there is left from childhood? Taking my trust, only coldness remains. I need you to keep away from me. Aloof, yet needy. It is so tiring being me. Dreaming of being someone else consumes me once again.
The undercurrent throbbing almost below consciousness runs the same, a feeling of being bad or wrong ingrained into my psyche since childhood due to the sexual attacks by loved ones. Maybe more damaging was that the traumatic experiences were never allowed expression… that meant no love, support or medical attention offered to process and work through it.
There it sat solidifying within me. As a child alone with such traumas the only way through was to blame myself, otherwise it is the family that is bad. The family was all I had, so I blamed myself. How could I not? .
The message that I’m bad became central, the core of my personality. My fear is that threads of it will forever stay. The work continues. Progress has been made, yet when winter pulls me under, the wish to sleep till spring like a bear takes hold. Each day must be faced with the goal that by day’s end there will be a feeling of satisfaction and accomplishment.
Nearing evening the boxes are checked, and too often failing in some. That some is a word used in that sentence is a step forward. Rather than seeing it all as failures, there is room for all that is achieved. That is progress. The harsh voice is softened.
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.
There is a place inside called home. A place you can rely on. A place to go when scared, and everyday I’m scared. Scared of living? Or dying? Or not fully living, and becoming all I can be?
You are the container; the plant, the soil, the root, and you can blossom. You need air, sustenance, and sunshine. That is all you need. Sometimes it is fulfilling to breeze against others, but sometimes that only causes further damage.
The branches of pines, like fingers brushing my arm walking by, caress a hello, greeting me with snow-tipped arms. There, you are not alone, your friends touch their cold pointy tips with a warm embrace. A smile erupts while passing by… each one brushing a light hello.
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.
It’s not so much events that trip me but how people handle them. If you’re direct, even if it means hurting my feelings, I’m OK. If you proceed with something knowing it isn’t considerate of me, and without being upfront about it, the hurt doesn’t just go deep… it invades my soul with a stab that upsets all systems. It sets off alarms that keep me up in the night for several nights.
I cannot stand charade, accompanied by manipulation. Acting cheerful while fully knowing you are doing something that will hurt me brings me right back to my childhood, reinforcing the belief that no one is to be trusted, and everyone will hurt you and take something from you. It is that kind of manipulation which re-opens wounds keeping them festering and the blood flowing.
My entire childhood was manipulated, by my mother, and the molesters. I don’t feel I have a clear thought in my head, nor know what my real heart wants. I am more like a top in the water bouncing around at your prerogative.
The swaying is dizzying. The surviving need is to remove weeds of doubt and cruel hands whose impression on me has remained, to remove them pricker by pricker like burdock stuck on a coat— as long as it takes. Someday the real me will surface, or felt deep below truly discovered, nurtured, and lovingly cared for. Each day yields another attempt at discovery and the deepening of self-love.