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About this blog

Writings and ramblings calling out to God and the world to help find my voice again.

 

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Wonderfully_Made

Lesson 5

I was in the abuse small group of women in Celebrate Recovery tonight when a woman in the group began sharing things that really triggered me. First of all, she didn't share about her own experiences, which is part of the usual instructions in the opening of the group. She shared about her daughter's experiences being molested, and she shared about them graphically. I practically ran out the door after a bit of this. I got home and called my old sponsor from AA. I shared what was going on in my head and I shared that I was going to go to Taco Bell and "medicate" my feelings with a taco salad. She validated my feelings and didn't shame me for stuffing most of them. In fact, she stayed on the phone with me as I left the house again to go to the store and get some Ben & Jerry's.

Later on in the evening I was reading a book that talks about forgiveness, anger and letting go of fear (Marianne WIlliamson's book A Return To Love). I realized that I am angry at my Mom for not knowing about the abuse that happened to me at around ages 3 and 4, and I'm also angry at her because she didn't protect me from it. It's so confusing; I love my Mom and I respect my Mom, but I'm also disgusted with her too.

I chatted with a friend over Facebook and shared my feelings about my Mom. This friend had a rough childhood growing up. He now has over 20 years in Al-Anon. He said he understood my feelings and that he was able to let go of his anger at his Mom for not protecting him by realizing that if she could have done any better at the time, she would have. He said what "She had was/is a disease that limited her ability to do better than she did."

My Mom isn't an alcoholic, but I would say that she has the disease of "al-anon-ism", if that's a term. My grandpa was an alcoholic and my grandma had a mental illness, so my mother's perceptions and reactions in life were probably skewed quite a bit. I'm asking the Holy Spirit to help me to see and love my Mom the way God does.

I read about forgiveness tonight and I actually felt forgiveness for my cousin (and my ex-husband too). I'm hoping it sticks. It will save me a lot of grief and money in therapy, lol. I'll stay in the moment. Tomorrow will take care of itself. God is good. God is love. I am good. I am love. My Mom is good. My Mom is love. My cousin is good. My cousin is love. Love really is the answer  

 

Wonderfully_Made

Baby Steps

So far in therapy I've hardly discussed the sexual abuse I experienced from my cousin as a child.

We've been discussing my Grampy. He committed suicide a little over 20 years ago. My parents have hardly mentioned him since then. It's like he never existed except in my mind. It's enough to make a person think she's crazy. His violent death left a hole in my heart and mind that I almost can't deal with. The pain is excruciating sometimes. I never had a chance to grieve.

My Grandpa was an irreverent alcoholic who ran around on my Grandma...but he loved me and I loved him. I asked him a few years before he died "Grampy, why don't you go to church?" He answered "I go to the round church so the preacher can't corner me." 

He used to take me to the American Legion bar in our small town when I was little and play pool with me. Not exactly a "Hallmark" family moment, but it was the only way he knew how to bond with someone. He would take a quarter and put it in his hand and put both hands behind his back and have me guess which hand the quarter was in. Then he would give me the quarter. That's how he showed his love.

He stopped drinking a few years before he took his life, without the support of a 12-step group (so he was alone with no tools or coping skills and very miserable). He asked me to quit drinking myself about that time. He worried about me. (It took me another 11 or 12 years after his death for me to get into recovery.)

My therapist suggested that I put his photo up and light a candle to say "goodbye". I don't want to say "goodbye", but she said it's just saying goodbye to his physical body, which isn't here and hasn't been here for over 20 years. I think I'll do that and then let a helium balloon go.

On another note, I finished writing 3 letters a day for 14 days to God, my abuser and the little me. I experienced a lot of healing from this exercise. I feel one step closer to forgiving my cousin.

Tomorrow morning my sponsor from Celebrate Recovery and I are supposed to do the inner child exercises that michelleteama blogged about recently. 

Sounds like I'm just truckin' right along, right? Wrong. I'm in a lot of emotional pain right now so I have the frantic urge to binge eat at night. Then I beat myself up, judge and mentally criticize myself when I'm done. That's right, kicking myself when I'm down. It takes practice to be kind to one's self, and conscious choices too. I'm going for a short hike with my sponsor after we do the inner child work. That's one kind thing for myself. Baby steps.

Wonderfully_Made

I begin therapy tomorrow. It's going to be by Facetime. I live in Arizona and my new therapist lives in Nevada. My cousin (from Michigan, no less) gave me her number. I couldn't find one who would call me back who takes Medicare who lives by me. I am so sad, anxious and angry that I just want to eat to medicate the feelings away...so sometimes I do, and sometimes I write, and sometimes I cry. 

After a brief stint in the psych hospital and a week off I went back to work last Monday. God has been good to me-not very many people are coming into my groups right now so my anxiety level isn't through the roof and at my evaluation last week I got a substantial raise. 

I told a good friend (who I haven't seen since I went into the hospital) about what was coming up for me. She's a good friend-she validated me. She even made me belly-laugh at the restaurant (which doesn't happen too often these days). All in all I feel hopeful right now. The tears in this picture are healing tears;

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Wonderfully_Made

(TW) I don't really know what to say, so I'll just start; My (approximately) 15 year old cousin molested me and I'm pretty sure he had me molest my little brother who is 1 year younger than me around the time when I was 3 or 4 years old. The memories are sketchy and that is VERY frustrating but I know it's a protection mechanism. I'm 46 years old and it's just coming up now, but I guess the little girl inside of me trusts me enough to take care of her at this point in my life.

I just feel so sad, scared and alone...which is how I've felt most of my life. It's hard to trust God because he didn't protect me then. I guess he's walking me through this. He had a man at a Celebrate Recovery concert (out of the blue) give me the book "Hear Me" by Vicki Edwards as I started on this journey. (It's a wonderful children's book that addresses abuse.)

My friend, who has worked through a lot of issues in Al-Anon, told me about writing 3 letters a day for 14 days (1 to my Higher Power, 1 to my abuser, and 1 to the little me). I've been doing that for about 9 days already and I think it's helped. I start therapy on Tuesday morning and I go to a step-study group Thursday nights and a small group at Celebrate Recovery on Tues and Fri nights for women that have been abused . I don't have to do this alone. It's just hard to trust people and meet new people. I keep hearing Dory's voice from Finding Nemo "Just keep swimming. Just keep swimming.", so, that's what I'm going to do.

There is a poem I wrote a while back and it seems appropriate right now at this point in my life;

Hope

There's a light after every darkness

and a Power that protects us all

There's a love that helps us to stand

after we've taken a fall

When it feels like your winter will kill you

spring slowly blooms in your heart

When you feel like you're reaching your end

you might just be facing your start

 

 

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