I am feeling a bit wrung out, drained, and numb after the writing that’s been happening over the past week or so. I hadn’t planned on writing through the details of my personal history in the way I did or covering so much trauma and drama in such a concentrated way. If it was intense and overwhelming for me to write it out, I can imagine that reading all of it could be even more so. Thank you for sticking with me through this.
Once upon a time many of these stories, in various forms, were part of my everyday conversation with others. I would spew out this kind of traumatic information like I was discussing the weather; matter of fact, detached, and just as an FYI. I have always been the Queen of TMI.
Even when I tried to stop myself, my mouth would compulsively keep spewing out the information in a non-stop cascade of uncomfortable facts that would look like gossip had it not come directly from me. I alienated and pushed away a lot of people by doing that.
I get it, I really do. There are just some things you don’t want or need to know about a casual acquaintance or the stranger you sit next to on the bus. She must be crazy to be telling me these most intimate details and horrific events in her life. How quickly can I get out of here?
Sometimes sharing these stories was me displaying my badge signifying my strength and accomplishment at overcoming personal tragedy. At other times it was a weird way of establishing my credentials as someone who has been there, done that, and knows your pain. A lot of the time I was trying to explain and justify negative or harmful attitudes, words, and actions. I think the truth has been that I defined and limited myself by these stories.
• Incest survivor
• Child of a single, teen mom
• Child of broken homes
• Child of a parent committed suicide
• Teen mom
These identities informed my internalized foundational beliefs about myself.
• “white” trash
• never going to amount to anything
I am starting to realize that by the time I met and ran away with Marco’s dad, I had already decided I didn’t have a future and wasn’t someone worth fighting for. Everything since then was me trying to convince everyone else of something I didn’t truly believe – I am worthy.
Writing out these stories of my life, opening myself up to recalling the facts and cracking open the door to emotional memory is helping me to see the flawed beliefs and the lies I learned to tell myself about who I was and who the other people were in my life.
Now, I need to spend some time processing and coming to terms with these things and figure out the correct lenses and filters to use in order to see the truer picture.
There is a deeply wounded, scared and angry little girl inside who has been driving the bus for a long time. Her sadness and hurt, her fears for her safety and well-being, and her sense of having been treated unjustly have informed and shaped the woman I am today.
Somehow, I have to figure out how to move out of the way, so she can receive the love, care, and nurture that has been denied her and that she has given up believing is possible for her.
I can’t change or fix the past. I am not a physician to be able to heal myself. This is something that can only be accomplished through the healing and restorative power of divine love. Now I am coming to believe that healing is possible for me on a deeper level than ever before.
Step 1: I can’t
Step 2: God can
Step 3: I think I’ll let Him
I’ve touched only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to having done the Step 4 searching and fearless moral inventory of myself. There is a lot more ground to cover. Sifting and sorting through what has been written these past few days will help me to understand and identify more of the things about me that drive the depression, the relational conflicts and codependency.
Writing this all out here is also my Step 5: Admitting to God, to myself and to another human being the exact nature of my wrongs. Thank you for choosing to be part of my healing and recovery process.
Gratitude Day 13
I am grateful to Bill W. and Dr. Bob the founders and first members of the Alcoholics Anonymous movement for being the conduit by which the 12 Steps has been disseminated to the world. The Steps are not just tools for helping alcoholics stay sober and addicts to stay clean, they are a guided path for healing and recovering from patterns of thinking and acting out in ways that are harmful to self and others.