wordless

I have a mother
I needed a mom whose lap I could sit on
I have a mother
I needed a mom who would listen to me
I have a mother
I needed a mom who would help me fight my battles
I have a mother
I needed a mom who would laugh with me
I have a mother
I needed a mom who would hurt with me
I have a mother
I needed a mom who would kiss all my hurts away
I have a mother
I needed a mom who would let me cuddle me during sickness
I have a mother
I needed a mom who would let me be sick
I have a mother
I needed a mom who would keep me safe from the boogieman
I have a mother
I needed a mom who would stick up for me
I have a mother
I needed a mom who had a soft shoulder to cry on
I have a mother
I needed a mom who would let me cry
I have a mother
I needed a mom who would hold me in her arms
I have a mother
I needed a mom who was patient with me
I have a mother
I needed a mom who gave me comfort
I have a mother
I needed a mom who encouraged me
I have a mother
I needed a mom who gave me hope
I have a mother
I needed a mom who would love me and love me again
Love me with her actions as well as her heart

I haven’t been here for a very long time. This place has not been forgotten. I have wondered many times why I’ve been avoiding this place and never really finding the answer.  I think I’ve realized one of the reasons the other day while in session with my counsellor. The more distress I’m in the less I communicate.  It’s something I’ve known about myself when I’m physically sick but didn’t realize this when I’m emotionally distressed.  I have finally been acknowledging the truth about my mother. It has been very hard for me to be honest about my mother and my past and this has put me into the depths of despair. I must admit I find it discouraging that these realizations bother me so but here I am attempting to communicate once again.

Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Sick

Sorry I haven’t blogged in a bit. I’m not planning on stopping. It just I’ve been so sick this summer. I have missed a few therapy sessions because of this. I keep getting one flu after another it seems.  Hopefully I will be over this soon. Ugh I feel like crap. Enough whining.  I’ll be back to reading and writing as soon as I feel a little better. I miss this and you…

Posted in Uncategorized | 4 Comments

Unexpected

Driving home from my session I received a message, ‘dad is not expected to make through the weekend’.  I was in a vulnerable state, as usual, after a session.  Dad? Oh yah, ‘Wayne’, the man I never call ‘dad’.

I have often thought about this moment wondering how I would feel.  I have been totally convinced I would feel absolutely nothing.  As an adult I have felt neutral about him, no love, no hate, no dislike, no hurt, nothing.  Just some stranger who was in my life at one time.

The unexpected happened. I was suddenly overwhelmed with many confusing emotions.  A great sadness washed over me.  I didn’t understand where this was coming from.  How is it possible to feel sadness about him dying?  Last time I had seen him was 12 years ago.  And before that I was a teenager.  I’ve had no contact between those times.  I don’t even know the man.

After wrestling with this for a bit it suddenly come to me that I wasn’t really sad for him but for what should have been.  Sad because when it comes down to it I’m not sure what I missed in not having a nice father.  I can only guess at what I missed.  Or maybe sort of know what I missed by watching other dads with their children.  As a child I used to fantasize being in another family but even those fantasies were vague not knowing what a nice family was.

Mixed in with this sadness was a strong feeling of guilt. My sister has kept in contact with him.  On occasion she will tell me I should also contact him.  I can’t remember the reasons why she thinks this. Maybe because I get angry at her and walk away when she mentions it.

I started feeling that maybe I should have kept in touch. That maybe she was right and that my reasons for not are lame.  After all he is family.  I thought maybe I should hop on a plane and fly to Ontario to be with him and his family.

Then began the war within. Conflicting thoughts and emotions.  Trying to come to terms with the unexpected turmoil.

I was the child of the family. Maybe I should have contacted him but as the adult of the family I believe he should have been the one to keep in contact or at least first contact.  He never even tried. I don’t even know if he wanted contact and if he did he didn’t have the balls to do so. In reality I never wanted to stay in touch and wouldn’t now. Why would I want to with such a brutal person anyway.

I have only one good memory of him. But the one good memory doesn’t
by any means over ride the legacy he left me that I’m still trying to overcome.

All those years ago I lived with a terrorist not a dad. So why these feelings?

ps: as of this writing he is still alive

Posted in Abandonment, Abuse, Attachment, Conversation, Family, Father, Fear, Grief, Hurt, Relationships, Terror, trauma, Trust, Uncategorized | 5 Comments

Integration

I haven’t given this word much thought. I’ve read many blog posts on this concept but never related any of it to myself.  That is until a few sessions back. We didn’t talk about this in-depth it just came up casually with the therapist. The conversation was actually focused on denial.

It seems I keep beating around the same bush when it comes to denial.  I can’t seem to help denying what happened to me, denying the badness of it.  And when I vaguely talk about something that happened it’s like I’m not connected to the story at all. I can’t seem to connect to feelings that maybe I should have about what I experienced.

We talked about this for a while.  I think it is a hindrance to healing in some ways.  I need to own what happened.  I know nothing can be changed but I need to be able to say ‘yes this was MY experience’.

I told her it felt like it wasn’t my experience but someone else. I told her when I start to talk to her about ‘stuff’ a major conflict begins in me.  I have realized there are parts of me stirring within causing all kinds of trouble for me.

I also came to realize during that session that my trauma is being held elsewhere and not here.  And that’s when she brought up the word integration.  Funny but before this session I could say the word integration with no problem but during the session I couldn’t spit the word out no matter how hard I tried.  It was extremely anxiety provoking to say the least.

I find this confusing (and I’m sure this all reads confusing) and I’m not sure how I should go ahead with such knowledge.  My therapist says this is a protective thing for me and we need to deal with it slowly.  Truthfully I don’t know if I can deal with it at all.  I do feel extreme fear with the thought of it. Oh well, if nothing else I am stubborn and persistent.

Good way to be on this scary journey!

Posted in Abuse, Anxiety, Control, Conversation, Dissociation, Fear, Therapist, Therapy, trauma, Uncategorized | 6 Comments

No Privacy

I haven’t been able to blog since my last post due to lack of privacy.  My living space is now in the throes of renovations.  Drywall dust abounds.  I have been relegated to the living room. At night I sleep in my reclining chair which gives me a kinked back!

Right now I have no space of my own. I am almost always in the company of my mother and sister.  I find it rather trying.  I haven’t been able to read blogs or to blog.  It weirds me out to even think of doing these things when my mother is basically sitting next to me.  She doesn’t have a clue about my other ‘life’, so to speak.

Hopefully I will be able to reclaim my space sooner than later.  Although it has been a trying time I’m excited about having a new and improved living area!

Even more I need to blog, to get all these thoughts out. Soon…

 

Posted in Change, Control, Conversation, Family, Mother | 2 Comments

Click

One day this past week I was reading a book with a half an eye on the movie ‘The Incredible Hulk’, that was playing on TV.   I wasn’t paying too much attention to it when I happened to look up at some scene that was playing out when I heard the words

‘It’s ok’.

Those two words struck me to the core. In that moment I realized I had never heard those words before.  The two words I needed to hear many times as a child but never did.  All I remember hearing were variations of these words, ‘go to your room until you quit crying’, ‘buck up’, ‘fight your own battles’, don’t bother me’, and so on.

This week I talked to my therapist about it.  Prior to having these words strike me in a different way I’ve struggled with the idea that sometimes therapy feels like I need to meet some performance standard.  I understand the need for goal setting in therapy but it has also became somewhat of a hazard for me. When I don’t feel I’m performing how I should, fail.

When I talked to her about how I never heard those words as a kid I got brave and told her how I don’t think I’ve heard ‘it’s ok’ in therapy either.  How sometimes it feels performance oriented.

I understand the therapists’ need to make sure we are moving along and her need to feel that what she is doing is effective and if not, maybe we need to change things up. When we were talking about this she said she knows that most of my stuff is not a quick fix.

I know she has told me ‘it’s ok’ in some form or another when I struggle with reactions and such.  Usually it’s in the form of  ‘it’s normal to feel that way considering what happened’,  or ‘how could you know any different if you weren’t taught that’, blah blah…

I’m sure these are all forms of ‘it’s ok’ and are validating in some way (or not) but they are wrapped up in fancy wrapping.  The trouble is the words get lost in the fancy wrapping and I don’t hear them. Sometimes I get lost in all that therapy speak.

Some days I just need a simple ‘it’s ok’.

I felt we clicked in our conversation this week.  I felt not only did I click with her but that she also clicked with me.

Posted in Attachment, Conversation, Relationships, Therapist, Therapy, trauma, Trust, Uncategorized | 5 Comments

Around and Around I Go

I walk into her office feeling split.  Two people have walked into the room.  One feeling the all-pervading sadness that hasn’t eased up.  The other part walks in feeling totally dissociated and not feeling a thing.  How that is possible I’m not sure.

After a bit of chit-chat she wants me to paint on paper how the week has been for me.  I tell her I can’t. I tell her there is nothing in me.  She wants me to give it a go anyway.  To take my time.  I sit there for a while and slowly the sad part takes over and I begin to paint.

During our discussion of what I painted she made the comment, ‘interesting, I was just discussing what you are describing with your painting with the bereavement group last night’.  So we started talking about the cycle of sadness and grief.  And now I’m coming to a realization.  I know this has been slowly forming in me but as usual I have tried to ignore it as much as possible.

When we started to talk about grief she gave me some notes on it.  I haven’t looked at them closely but one of the pages has a chart on it.  It is three circles over lapping each other in a triangle formation.  Written in the top circle is denial, in the right side circle confrontation and in the third circle integration.  Like I said I haven’t looked at this closely yet but just looking at it made me realize what I’ve known in a vague way.

I’m stepping out of denial and starting to confront the reality of my life. This is reason why I feel like I’m drowning in sadness.  A sadness that has always been with me but never acknowledged for what it is and why it is.

I learned one other thing tonight as I walked into her office and sat before the blank sheet of paper that was waiting to be painted on.  I am now aware of how bad the dissociation has gotten since I started down this path of discovery. It really does suck and I need to figure out a way to manage it.  I can’t seem to figure dissociation out.  It always seems like my sense of time and space is out of wack.  It’s a weird sensation for me even though I experience often.

Where ever I go these days, the dissociated me is in the lead with the sad part of me trialing behind.

As hard and painful  this ‘process’ (as therapists like to say!) is, I really hope I can work through it.  At the very least learn how to manage it.

 

Posted in Abuse, Conversation, Dissociation, Grief, Therapist, Therapy, trauma | 4 Comments

Lines upon Lines

I paint a straight, horizontal, grey line about two inches thick.  Within the line I paint a few red thin streaks here and there.  Under the grey line I paint another line. This one is a least five inches think and red, very red.  The bottom of this red line slowly fades out into nothingness.  I paint a tiny grey figure within the red just before it fades away.

These are my words this night at my therapy session.  Even as I’m painting I still have no verbal words that go with what I am painting in such a crude way.  But I slowly find out how loaded with meaning this particular painting is.

With my therapist’s patient and gentle prompting the words slowly start to form along with some realizations that I’ve always known but never acknowledged.  And along with that some realizations that seem to be new but deep down know is truth.  And trust me, I’m not happy with any of these insights.

The grey is the sadness/grief I seem stuck in these days. It’s linear, flat and mostly contained.  The thing is though, I haven’t been only stuck in the sadness ‘these days’.  I have always been stuck in this sadness.  The grey figure, the baby, feels like it was born in sadness.  I have been sad forever.

The red is hurt.  It is the base for the grey. It is even in the grey. The hurt is large, three times as large as the grey.  The tiny grey figure, the baby, feels like it was born in hurt.  I have lived in the hurt always.

And with this painting began the slow, halting conversation about the hurt within, about the grief within.   The beginning of saying ‘yes’ this is a part of me.  Parts I can’t ignore any longer.

 

Posted in Abandonment, Abuse, Control, Conversation, Grief, Hurt, Therapist, Therapy, trauma, Uncategorized | 4 Comments

Wordless

warning: this will be about suicide

I have picked up my computer a hundred times only to put it back down a hundred times.  So much is swirling through my head but I can’t seem to find the words or energy to express any of it.  The last few weeks have been tough for me.  I am struggling. I am in a state of melancholy that I find quite annoying.  It’s like a low-grade depression that kicks my butt.

A few things have happened in the last few weeks that triggered this episode.

Another acquaintance of mine killed himself.  He was a very nice person. It’s so sad and it’s made me sad in ways I can’t seem to explain.  Our area has a very high suicide rate for some reason.  I have lived in this area for many years and can count on my fingers and toes the number of people I have known who have died in this way.  And for some odd reason it triggers the suicide feelings I’ve had all my life.  I have been talking about this with my therapist and thankfully she doesn’t freak out.

Another of my friends was admitted to the psych ward last week as well.  He suffers with  depression and suicidal thoughts.  This is the first time he has sought help.  It wasn’t easy for him to seek the help but I’m glad he did.  His wife told me that the last couple of suicides in our area really affected him as well.

I think this stuff combined with what I’m working on in therapy combined with being physically tired from working too much has overwhelmed me.

There are words deep, deep down and when I break they will come pouring out.

Posted in Anxiety, Conversation, Grief, Suicide, Therapist, Therapy, trauma, Uncategorized | 6 Comments

Words

I live in my head, unconnected to my body.  I am starting to see how true this is.  In last night’s session as well as many sessions before she asks me how I’m feeling.  She asks me what are the feelings I feel associated with certain things that have happened or are happening in the present.  To my frustration I can never really answer her.  I say I feel low.  But that answer is not good enough for my therapist.  She will ask me what is the feeling(s) that are making me feel low.  I tell her that I don’t really know.

She asks me if I would like to try drawing the feelings that I don’t have words for.  I say sure while thinking how can I draw the unknown.  I should know better because many things come out of the art that I do.  (keep in mind I can’t actually draw :) )

One interesting thing that came to light for me through this exercise was the concept of grief.  I haven’t ever given this much thought when it comes to myself.  I haven’t ever considered the possibility in any serious way that I may have some (maybe a lot of) grief residing in me.

But now I wonder.

As a five-year old I remember sitting in a dark room at night looking at the houses across the street wishing I lived in another family, trying to figure out the best way to kill myself.  I don’t remember the reason for wanting this at that young age.  But those feelings I felt then have never left me.

I wonder if I was grieving a loss of a childhood I hadn’t even lived yet, one that I really wouldn’t live.  Maybe my body knew something my young mind didn’t.

Posted in Abandonment, Abuse, Anxiety, Conversation, Dissociation, Family, Fear, Grief, Relationships, Running, Therapist, Therapy, trauma, Trust, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | 6 Comments