Archive for the ‘reality’ Category

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Healing in the midst of living…

December 5, 2012

Healing can be hard when you also have to focus on living. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could all go someplace safe where our physical needs were met and there were safe knowledgeable people who could support us and walk with us as we face our pasts and work toward our futures? It sounds idyllic, doesn’t it? Oh, how nice that would be.

The reality, though, is that most of us do not have anything even close to that. We take snippets of time here and bits of space there and try to sort through what is happening to us…attempting to make sense of the experiences that are rocking our world. We have any combination of families and loved ones to take care of,  jobs to tend to , classes to take, sick ones to nurse. And somehow, in the busyness of life, we try to heal.

There are so many things I had to learn about how to heal without taking a vacation from regular life. Recognizing and accepting my limitations goes a long way…instead of fighting them. When I feel overwhelmed or like I am pushing against a wall, I find it is better to take five to ten minutes and go hole up in the bedroom (or some other safe alone place) than to try to keep on slugging through it. Just taking those few minutes to breathe and refocus helps so much.

What about when I cannot leave or don’t have the option to be alone? I try to find an opportunity to close my eyes for a few seconds or minutes. Or, if that would be seen, perhaps I can sit somewhere just outside of the conversation zone and just sort of “tune out”  for a minute or two. Letting my mind wander, or even just listen to other conversations without taking part in them can really help.

How do I extricate myself when I find I am engaged with someone? Go to the bathroom. Seriously, if I am at someone else’s house, I can quietly excuse myself and then take my time getting back…a reasonable amount of time, of course, as I don’t want to be rude. When I come back out, I do not have to go back to the same conversation, especially if there are scattered groups around the room or house. I can go get a breath of fresh air or even just sit in another room for a minute or two…just long enough to not be considered rude. If someone notices and asks, I can just say that I needed a moment to sort of clear my mind and/or just soak up the wonderful atmosphere of the event. Or I was just taking a moment to feel appreciation for all my friendships…or whatever other creative thing I can come up with. And, of course, because I always want to be as truthful as I can, I make sure that I actually do something suitable for the environment and the people and go with it.

Being able to take good care of myself when I am feeling stressed goes a long way toward my healing. It helps to keep me from slipping backward. And when I do get some precious alone time to work on my healing, I don’t have to spend it decompressing. I am ready to jump in because I have been dealing with the day-to-day stresses as I go along.

Sometimes, though, I do need that alone time to simply relax…or to simply not have to answer to, or be responsible for, another person. It might even be a good time to take the phone off the hook. Or take a nap. Or just do something I find difficult to do when others are around. I work on doing as much as I can when I am not alone so that I can be most productive for my healing and personal growth when I am alone.

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Living Life in the Face of Nastiness…

March 30, 2012

There are people in life who are simply nasty. They are mean, disrespectful and really don’t care how what they do affects others. When confronted with such people, we have choices to make. We can either react to them, wherein we lose ourselves by allowing them to control our lives and determine how we will live. Or, we can respond to them, wherein we maintain our own autonomy and integrity and choose how we shall live. I prefer the latter. That is my choice.

When I am confronted by nasty negative people I choose to remember that I, too, have had my “moments” of being nasty or ugly. It may not have been intentional. I may not have even been aware of how I was coming across. Or, I may have realized it as it was happening, but did not know how to “fix” it. Or maybe there was no fix…the damage was already done. Any way you look at it, I have had a negative impact on others at times in my life. So, I believe it is worthwhile to remain humble toward others, recognizing that I am certainly not perfect, either!

I also try to remember that everyone is the way they are for a reason. For good or bad, we have all had negative and positive experiences in life that have helped to shape us into what we are today. Sometimes, the balance between positive and negative was fairly even overall. But for some of us, one heavily outweighed the other.

For those whose positive experiences heavily outweighed the negative it can be difficult to understand those of who whose lives were the opposite. We may fumble where they do not. We may react to things that do not faze them one bit. I think it is good when each person can believe another’s story and try to imagine living in that reality. It can help us to be more empathetic toward others.

For those of us who weigh heavily on the negative, and some even in the extreme, it can be difficult to imagine life without that. We see the way others live and struggle to comprehend how they can do that. It just isn’t even on our radar.

Thankfully, though, there can be some good experiences even in the midst of craziness and evil, that give us some positive skills for life. For me, knowing my Creator made a HUGE difference. It is part of what helped to shape me and, I think, to temper how the abuse affected me.

I still deal with the physical effects of trauma brain and I can still experience flashbacks that are part of PTSD and getting  triggered.  However, I have learned over the years how to cope and work around the aftereffects. I know what I can do and what I cannot do and I no longer feel guilt or shame over what I cannot do…even when others do not understand. It is frustrating at times when people look less favorably upon me for what I cannot do. They cannot comprehend how even the simplest of things can be overwhelming at times. But I have learned to live with that and simply accept that there are things they simply do not know and, even if they did, might not be able to understand.

Life is good…even when it is hard. I am OK with that. My heavenly Abba/Father/true Daddy walks with me. So does my Messiah…Yeshua. Their Ruach/Spirit lives within me and that strengthens and comforts me…especially when life is hard.

I refuse to give up. I refuse to hold grudges. I refuse to not forgive. I choose to walk in freedom with my head held high…even when I am shaking inside.

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Sui…well, you get the idea…

January 16, 2011

Within a few days, I read four things about suicide. One was a post at DIDiva where she gives a link to an article in the Huffington Post about a young man who killed himself. Reading that really made me very sad for him and for all the others who feel so alone…who feel such overwhelming darkness…and who feel that taking their life is the only real option. I am glad that he wrote a letter explaining what he did. Maybe it will help others.

I think it was the same day that I also read an online friend’s description of the aftermath of a suicide attempt. She especially wrote about the effects on the body. She also included a link to another person I know online whose blog I had never read…although we had crossed paths. That person mentioned an attempt in her year review…which led me to explore her blog a while.

I kept reading and wanting to respond, yet could not bring what I was feeling into words. Or at least not into words that I felt would do any good or have any kind of usefulness. I finally decided to write a post here instead, but had neither the time or wherewithal to put my feelings into thoughts and my thoughts into words on the screen. I just kept mulling it over…and experiencing emotions.

I can think of reasons that posts like that draw me. One is that it is possible that my sister committed suicide. I don’t know that it was intentional, but she did die as the result of her own actions. Some of those actions took the long, slow route…like bulimia and alcoholism. Boy was she a fighter…when the cult was not slapping her down.

I have received different stories about what happened and have even spoken with the coroner and read her report. I know my sister. There are things in the report that are fishy. But, hey, that is not exactly surprising considering how strong the cult is in that area. For example, my sis was a hard-core bulimic. For that alone, she was really living on borrowed time. Add to that alcohol. Know that those two things do to the body? It isn’t pretty. Yet, her stomach and liver were “unremarkable”! Excuse me! Unremarkable???? That is so wrong! Nothing about her teeth or knuckles, either. Personally, I think the family she lived with wanted to get rid of her and what they describe to me backs up my thought.

So that is one reason writings like that catch my eye. Another is that I have friends who struggle with this issue…a lot. And I care very much about them. I don’t want to lose them and I can only pray that they really know how much they mean to me…without them feeling pressured by that. I hope that makes sense.

I especially appreciated the post describing the aftermath because I have thought of suicide most of my life. I am pretty much beyond it now, but there was a time when it was on my mind…a LOT. It was not so much that I wanted to die. I just wanted the pain to stop…which is what I suspect happened to my sister. I think she was trying to number herself and over did it…or her battered body just finally gave out.

So…why am I alive? There are a number of reasons. I have always been determined not to leave that legacy to my loved ones…especially my children. I know that survivors of a loved one’s suicide are a lot more likely to commit suicide themselves. I did not want to put them at risk. Therefore, I searched for ways to do it that would not be obvious…that no one would think my death was intentional. I couldn’t find one.

There was also the fact that I believe I am here for a reason. The end of my life is G-d’s domain…not mine. Hard as it has been at times…I want to honor that. Fear of hell used to keep me alive, but I no longer believe that people go to hell for taking their lives. For other things, yes…but not for that. Not wanting to have to stand before my heavenly Abba explaining why I did it was compelling enough, though.

There is one thing I have found, however. There are times when the darkness and pain can become so severe that all of those reasons start to become meaningless. No matter how strong they are in normal life, when the darkness gets that strong, they fade into the background. Holding onto life becomes a challenge. Even now, I have my days when I want to go Home. I don’t act on it, but I can sure want it.

As far back as High School I would pray for G-d to take me Home as I slept. I don’t remember if I prayed that in Junior High. Junior High is when my childhood memories start to come into focus…although I am missing things from that, too. My mother told me about a major change during that time that I still only have a single incident flashback about. So I know I am still missing stuff.

Anyway, this is what I have been thinking on for the last few days. To all my friends (and anyone else out there) who are struggling with this issue…please, hold on. I do understand. Feel free to share with me how you feel. I know that can help. Either email me or find someone to talk to. Please know that someone cares. I know…when the darkness is that deep it may not really matter. But I feel a need to write it anyway.

Edit in on 1/17: When I wrote this the other day, there was something I wanted to include, but forgot. There is another reason I hesitated to do anything…I was terrified of surviving. There are a lot of aspects of surviving that I dreaded…such as shame, facing the anger and hurt of others and having others not trust me because they were always worried that I might try it again.

The biggest fear, though, was the possibility of surviving in a body that was broken beyond repair. I was terrified that I could end up paralyzed or with some kind of irreparable brain damage that would leave me dependent upon others (and, in my mind, a burden to them) for the rest of my life. I would feel like a double failure…unable to take my life and now a mess for others to deal with. That was my reality. That was my thinking in those times.

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Cruelty and Healthy Boundaries…

September 17, 2010

What my mother has done is cruel. I keep trying to empathize and to understand her pain. But not matter how much I empathize…no matter how much I forgive…it still hurts like hell. I am the unwanted daughter. I did not step up to the plate. I did not take over. I stepped out of line. I left. I have no desire to be a princess other than in the One True Creator God’s kingdom.

I will never live up to her expectations. Her expectations (and his) lead to death. I have chosen a different path. If they do not want me…they can forget my son. I was actually willing to let them talk to him on the phone, but if they don’t want me…forget it. That is not being selfish…it is being real. It is not being vindictive…it is setting boundaries…healthy boundaries.

Boundaries are not OK in the cult. My whole life I had no boundaries. I did not know where I ended and other people began. I was trained to be a chameleon…to anticipate others needs/wants. Those in the cult who knew the trigger words and actions could get anything they wanted. NO MORE!!

I was accessed by a “Christian” therapist after we moved here. He had experience with cult clients. Little did I know that he was not only cult himself…but that we had met many years ago. It ends here…and now! I will not kowtow to my parents. I will not kowtow to anyone but my Lord…and He does not ask me to. He lifts my head to look into His eyes so that I can see His healing love.

I hurt. I am angry. I do not deserve to be treated this way. Even IF I had been the worst daughter on the planet…rather than simply and imperfect one…I do not deserve this. I have reached out via email for a year and a half. It has gone nowhere. I tried. My conscience is clear. I have done what I can. It is their loss. They can blame me all they want…but they have a part in this. I am an adult. I will not submit to them or to their control. I will not go back to the way things were.

So I will continue to mourn what was and I will mourn what never was. I will mourn the dream of having a somewhat regular family. I will keep my heart open until there is nothing left…and at that point…I will mourn for what will never be. I have dreams. I have always had dreams. Many of them are just broken dreams…turning to dust beneath my feet. Oh, well.

I have survived. I will survive. Nay…I will thrive! In spite of how hard my life is right now…I have more freedom than I ever did living under their control. The Creator has given me the gift of who I am…all of me. I am His…and no one else’s…no one’s.

I hope we can make peace before she dies…same with him. But if it does not happen…I refuse to beat myself up with guilt that is not mine.

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When Is It Rape?

July 28, 2010

I titled this some time ago. I finally decided to finish it. I feel a need to write. My guys came back home. They forgot something and so are going to go tomorrow evening instead. I decided to finish this anyway. Here is the post. I hope it is coherent and makes some kind of sense.

When is it rape?

When the other person feels coerced into having sex…regardless of the form it takes…regardless of whether there is penetration or groping or…fill in the blank.

When the other person does not really want to do it, but feels they have no say.

When the other person is forced physically into being the recipient.

When one person is a bully who just wants their own way without regard for the other person.

When it is an adult with a minor…a parent with a son or daughter.

When it is a boss with an employee.

When something is held over the other person’s head…like a promotion or being able to keep their job.

When the victim submits because of the threat of the victim being blamed and embarrassing their family.

When the victim is told that their family will not believe them or will disown them…or worse…when the victim is told that a member of their family will be killed if they don’t submit.

When you have to pry the other person’s legs apart to do it…and yes…even if that person is your WIFE!!!

When? When. When! Do I need to continue?

My ex raped me several times…but I could not call it that. Not until…

My boys had been seeing a therapist and I finally decided to see one myself. Not too long after I started to see her, I separated from my then husband. So, she switched gears on me. I had paged her…really needing to talk to her. She told me in the phone call that she felt we should switch from the childhood stuff I came to her for and deal with the marriage separation…that I was in crisis.

“Crisis”…the word was foreign to me. My whole life had felt crazy. This was “normal” for me. Crisis? I had NO idea what she was even talking about! At our next appointment, we talked about it. I told her how I did not relate to the idea of my situation being a “crisis”.

She gave me an assignment. I was to write down everything I wanted to say to my husband…not that I had to say it to him…thank G-d…but if I could say anything to him…what would I want to say. Well, I did just that.

When I brought it in, I handed it to her. She read it and then handed it back to me and told me to read it…out loud. I refused. I absolutely could NOT do that. I had written things that could not be spoken. The fact that I had even written them was a huge step for me. It went against everything I “knew” or “believed” about how I was to behave. I wrote my heart…but expressing my heart was verboten! Forbidden! I thought she was crazy, mean and unreasonable to expect me to read it out loud. After all…I had written it down, hadn’t I? Sheesh…what more could she want?

She insisted. I refused…to the point of throwing it on the floor. At that point, she picked it up and started reading it…out loud. She got to the part where I wrote about some incidents between my husband and I. I had merely brushed over his actions and I had not labeled them.

Yes…there was a word that would sometimes creep into the back of my mind, but I would always quickly shut it out. I figured that, if I used that word, I would be judged and people would explain that I was wrong and that my husband could not have done that kind of thing. I must have misunderstood…especially since he denied it. I simply could NOT apply that word to what had happened. After all…he was my husband and I was being difficult. Anything he did…I most likely deserved…and so it went in my head and heart. I had been trained well.

My therapist asked me to describe the incidents that I included on the list. I had only mentioned them in passing and she wanted details. As I explained to her what had happened…well…then she did the unthinkable. She looked right at me and softly said, “so…he raped you.” She used the “word”…the unthinkable word. She hit it right on the head and that word that I kept shoving out of my mind…even though I secretly thought it probably fit…came screaming to the front of my mind…and I cried.

Yes! It was RAPE! I don’t care if he remembered doing it. I don’t lie…unlike him. But then…that is typical of people who lie a lot…they never believe anyone else is telling the truth either. Funny how that is…deceitful people tend to believe that everyone must be just like them…and not to be trusted.

He raped me…more than once. I remember what it felt like…how each time it felt like a little piece of my heart just broke off and died. In fact, it was that feeling of inner death that the L-rd used years later to help get my children and me out of the charade of a marriage. He showed me that, if I did not set a particular boundary, I was going to die. And I was suddenly taken back to the rapes and how it felt. I knew what kind of death He meant.

It was a huge thing to do, but with His strength…I did it. It got pretty hairy, but I was determined. “No” meant “no”! Period! But he did not cross the line because this time I was not going to submit. I was willing to resist no matter where it led. I was prepared to be beat up…if need be. Thankfully…it did not come to that…although he did get physical…threw me on the bed and tried to undress me. I did not try to get away. I just resisted. Every time he stopped…I stopped…which gave him the idea I was giving in…until he started again and I resisted again. Oh, the threats he made…but I stood my ground. One week later, he was out of the house…at my request. It was time…and G-d showed me it was do or die. He gave me the strength to do what I needed to do.

What is rape? Take a look at that list! I could not stop my father. I could not stop my mother. I could not stop the cult. They took me. They took my sister. I could not stop my husband…until that moment in time. I could not stop the others who triggered my programming and used me. I could not stop the therapist who accessed me and used me almost four years ago. But I am a fighter! I have been through a lot and I will keep on fighting.

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About the theme…and other stuff…

July 6, 2010

OK…the other theme was driving me nuts. I could not get the background light enough without washing out some of the text…and I could not adjust the color of the text. So…I am trying this one out for a while. It is called “Neat”. I don’t really have time to mess with themes any more right now.

On other lines of thought…I started a poetry blog. It has a real original title…NOT! But at least I am pretty consistent! A Survivor’s Poetry. You can either click on the link here or you can find the link at the top of the RSS blog links in the right hand column. I can appreciate that there are some who might only want to read poetry…or only look at art…so, I made a blog for each.

My computer goes back soon. I don’t really like it, but I also don’t like the idea that I might not be to get it turned on one of these days. *sigh* I don’t know if they will fix it or not. One guy told me they will send a check for sure. Another guy said the first guy had no right to say that…that they might be able to fix it…or send an entirely different PC. I don’t mind fixing…but I am not thrilled with a different PC unless it is the same kind or better.

I am tired. I am grieving. This grieving has to do with my ex. Not that I am grieving him…but as I see his family on FB interacting with my first marriage sons…well…I am just so aware of losing not just a spouse…but a whole family. I know it had to be…in my head. But in my heart…it is another story. There is a part of me who wants to say “hello”, but I was so vilified and lied about that I don’t really dare. I have regained some connections…partially…but not all…which is actually probably a good thing.

I am continuing to work on getting my art into jpeg format. The motivation is the Webinar I am doing in August. But this is also good for me…to have all my pieces sorted through and categorized and numbered. The Webinar is being done by Survivorship. I will put a link in the sidebar. The Webinars are being done as a community service and also to raise funds for ongoing Survivorship services.

As for my parents…still no word. Such is life.

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Expectations of Life

July 22, 2008

So many times, life just does not turn out like we think it will. Or like we hope it will. Shoot, I found out that even my history is not what I thought it was. How bizarre is that? To realize that what I remember as my life was a farce…an implanted lie!

There is one thing, though, that I know is not a lie. My heart connection with Yahweh God. That has always been real and continues to be real. He has been with me throughout it all. He knows the truth and is able to show me what I need to know. He has guided me on my healing journey all of my life. I can look back and see His hand there, with me behind the scenes.

Without Him, I would not have been able to survive. Without Him, I could not do life today. It is that simple. I simply could not do it. He is good to me. I look forward to going home to be with Him forever. In the meantime, I will tough it out here in this life…with Yeshua/Jesus by my side and His Ruach/Spirit dwelling within me.

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Being Heard and Being Believed — MT??

April 11, 2008

Two of the biggest things as a survivor is being heard and being believed. Did I say two of the “biggest” things? Somehow the word “biggest” does not seem to do justice to how important these two things are. They are HUGE!!!! They are almost everything; but I won’t say they are everything because that would imply that healing is impossible if you have no one to hear you or believe you and I just do not believe that. However, it is a whole lot harder and it contributes to it taking a whole lot longer.

When you have been through things that are as bizarre as what I and some of my friends have been through…well…you have enough difficulty believing it is real yourself without having others doubt it, too. It is especially important for those who are supposed to be supporting and helping us to believe us. I have sensed a certain amount of incredulity from my current t.

Oh, it was not open…but I could tell. And it was something I really struggled with. He does not doubt the DID. He does not doubt that horrendous, heinous things have been done to me. It is the details he struggles with. And he asks me questions that I am not able to answer. When I walk into his office, I am running on issues. I am not in a teaching mode. I need him to do some reading. I have given him some links and even printed off some articles. He has read some, but he is too busy to read much at all. For someone who has never worked with DID or an SRA survivor before, that he knows of, I think he should spend at least a little consistent time reading up on it. Or…calling my back home t since she IS a good teacher. She has over 20 years experience working with people like me. And she is willing to answer questions.

Well, I have been stuffing my frustration and have felt uncertainty about what to do with my therapy. This last session he admitted that he had been wrestling with what to believe. But he did finally get it that it was not important. I told him I was run over by a truck. It does not matter if it was red or blue…if it was daytime or nighttime…I was still run over by a truck. He agreed with me. I think he sort of apologized about it…but I really don’t remember. I just know that I was glad to be validated in what I was picking up on. But I was also kind of ticked…although I don’t think that really hit until later. I was too busy trying to stuff my feelings about his admission. At least he had the integrity to admit his struggle with me. That took guts, I think.

In the larger, more “sophisticated” cults, they have elaborate sets…like in a movie. They use drugs and hypnosis and these sets, complete with costumes, etc., to plant all kinds of memories. Some people think they remember living in a past life. Some remember being abducted by aliens. Some just remember things that could not have happened in “real” life. All of it is designed to make the person feel like they are crazy…or to make others think they are crazy. What adult will believe a child who says some famous cartoon character had sex with them. Yeah, right, honey. Costumes, sets, hypnosis, drugs…deception upon deception. That is how the major cult groups work. And yes, they also have genuine real life stuff they do…horrendous stuff. It is not pretty.

So, yeah…did it really happen? Sure it did! To us it did! It does not matter if it was an elaborate setup of deception or if it was a bonafide real life kind of thing…to us it was real…every step of the way. We remember it as if it was genuine…and not deception. And that is what we must work with!

When they took us to rituals and we saw the things taking place…did it really happen? Was it real? Was the death we witnessed real? Maybe. They do both…the real and the deception. But does it really matter if a particular incident was faked or not? To us, at the time, it was genuine. In our hearts and minds…the horror was real. The horror was genuine…not faked. So, what the heck difference does it make what is real and what is not…what to believe and what not to believe???

When we felt physical pain…it was real. When we were forced to do things that were horrific…it was real. What we experienced was real…as far as we were concerned…it was really happening to us.

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