I watched a movie the other night called 'The Tale'. I am not always one who reads the overview of a movie. The title catches my eye and I watch. This is one I probably should have passed on but I couldnt stop watching because I related so well to it. It is about a woman who receives a story she wrote when she was younger from her mom. The story was about a young girl who was manipulated and sexually assaulted. The film spends the rest of the time with her trying to reconcile the story with her memories from 30 years ago.
This is what I feel like daily. I feel like I have these memories that feel unreal. I feel like I documented something years ago, blocked it out and rewrote it. Now, my mimd is trying to determine which is the truth. Was I that young? Were there that many? Was it all a lie? A fabrication because I needed a tale? A reason forbeing the way I am. I know that the thoughts werent 'planted' by anyone. By the time I soughttherapy, the memories were already present.
I want to believe my memories and say that I am doubting myself because I was very young at the start. How can you trust the idea that a 5yr old or younger recalls something like that accurately? Or that a 12 yr old recalls her memories from that age accurately. Did I fill in the 'blanks' with what I believe is a plausible explanation?
In my head, it all seems extremely real. My emotions react to the memories. My body reacts to the memories. I feel negative responses when I think too long about the times it happened. The doubt creeps in though. I start to question the details. I start to wonder if I inserted a detail for a part I couldnt recall. Did something I felt was inappropriate happen and it was completely innocent?
Because I do have such specific memories of before, during and after the events I am trying to have faith that they are true. It would be difficult for a child who hasnt experienced it to have such details and remain consistent.
Realistically, I should have turned this movie off as soon as I saw where it was going. The fact is I related too well and couldnt turn it off. Most other films deal with someone lying about it or drunk or drugged or have memories planted by someone else to explain their behaviour. In this case, it was none of those. The only difference is she seemed to block out much of it includimg what she looked like at that age. Picturing herself curvier and fuller and more adult-like. I can see myself as the child I was.
Part of healimg for me is to resolve the doubt. Until I do so, I will be stuck. I will always be moving in a circle. Always reverting to past behaviours when I think I have made.some progress. It isnt progress though. Its a pointless effort that I will have to repeat when the cycle comes back around. The woman in the film confirms what happened with another person, her mom and confronts the abuser. There is no one who can confirm it for me. I cannont comfront some of them because they are dead or have moved on in life. Others have family ties. As a cousin of mine says, we have enough broken branches on the family tree. Anymore and it will be a dead tree. And there is the one that I just cant. It has been my hope that confronting them is not required in my healing. They are all pretty dead to me. I dont speak with them at all. I may be proven wrong later. If so then that is when I will do it.
Today, the doubt is minimal and tamed. That is all I can ask for.