Saturday, August 23, 2014

Backward and Forward

Heidi,

I've been reading your blog for years and years. I am trying to think of how to say this without being an ahole. You have been stuck on these same issues forever. Your lisst of things to talk about are no different from what they were 5 years ago. You endured horrible traumas while growing up- things I can't even imagine. But I wonder at what point do you decide to let your present and future win? Be stronger from your experience and get up, get out and do something with your life? You are fun and bright and have so much to offer. It seems sad that instead your mind is stuck on all the negative and bad in your life.

A close friend of my mother's was sexually abused by her father and his friends. She is now about 55 and has wasted her life away being angry and stuck on what happened. I hate to say it, but her life has no present meaning. She is crabby and alone.

I hope you are able to take this with the positive (tho frustrated) viewpoint that is intended. Like I said, I have not experienced this sort of trauma, but I want you to use your powers to rise above and stop dwelling.


(I replied to this already but I’m going to flesh my answer out a bit better now.)

Oh no, please don't think you're being an asshole!  I absolutely know what you mean.  In real life I really am a happy and positive person who is hopeful and optimistic.  And cheerful, holy god am I cheerful!  (None of this is going to be about who I am during depressive states.  Because who I am then isn’t under my control and I’m hoping that everyone who is reading this understands at least that much about psychiatric health.)  Currently, I'm the happiest I've ever been.  But I guess I worry there's some hidden shit that I don't know about and haven't dealt with the way I should.  I don't know how to explain it so bear with me!

I honestly don't think about this stuff in general day-to-day life.  I don't often get triggered or overwhelmed by the distant past.  I guess maybe I feel "moving on" means diving into it as deeply as I can and really digging it out.  I guess I just feel like I haven’t done enough work for my growth to count or be real.

I'm not angry at either of my parents anymore.  I feel sad for them but I’m no longer letting them control me.  Two of my exes were dicks but I just have to try to not repeat my mistakes.  I'm growing and improving and being so much better at taking care of myself and making better decisions.  My therapist and therapy group see HUGE improvements in me.  And, like, I honestly see some improvement in myself too!  Which kinda blows me away.

I mean, I do dwell on things for longer than I’d like and longer than is healthy.  I totally do and I totally own that.  But now I really do try to stop myself as it’s happening and put a positive spin on it.  It doesn’t always happen but I do try.  I mean, I’m hella flawed.  I bitch too much and I’m terrified of confrontation and I’m antisocial and I find it exceedingly difficult to forgive myself and I struggle with hating myself.  But maybe those are things I should work on in the moment instead of only trying to figure out what exact part of my past created them.  I mean, does it even matter what precise moment of my past caused it?  Should I focus solely on the past instead of trying to create a future?

I guess I sometimes worry that maybe I haven't moved on at all and only THINK this stuff doesn't impact me.  (I mean, I know it does, but it doesn't impact me to the degree that I think it should.)  I’ve never been happy before.  I’ve never been joyful.  I’ve never loved life so intensely and passionately.  I don’t know what I’m doing!

I worry sometimes that bubbling beneath the surface is every issue on the face of the earth and they’ll eventually spring up and be too much for me to handle.  That I’m somehow deluding myself into believing I’m this happy and safe.  That I’m somehow deluding myself into believing I’ve moved on as much as I have.  It’s like I’m forcing myself to dwell because I’m worried I haven’t worked through it yet.  Shouldn't "moving on" involve sobbing in a therapist's office over this shit?  Or delving into the past and reliving it?

But, then again,…  I HAVE cried over this shit. I’ve cried a million fucking tears over it.  And I HAVE relived it.  A million fucking times.  So maybe I have done what I need to do with all of it.  I mean, yes, this stuff is going to come up again and again.  When I date or when I have to say “no” to someone or when I look in the mirror and want to cry or sometimes out of nowhere with no pinpointable cause but why should I dredge it up myself, again and again, just in case?

I’m not saying I won’t write about this shit because I will.  I’ll write about it a million times if I need to.  And I'll talk about my past.  But maybe I don’t need to be unhappy in the meantime.  Maybe I can try to understand that there is no finish line when it comes to healing from trauma.  That no matter how hard I try, I won’t reach a perfect and mythical state of “completely healed.”  That life is going to bring shit back up no matter how far beyond it I think I am.  That writing about it and talking about it IS important and necessary but I don’t have to be unhappy while waiting for myself to be “cured”.  That I don’t have to put life on hold until I’m healthy enough to move forward.  Because maybe I’m already healthy enough to forge ahead.

I'm in no way saying I'm done with my past.  I'm still going to journal and I'm still going process.  I'm still going to write about those topics.  I have to write about it and I have to talk about it because that's the only way I'm going to continue to heal and become the person I want to be.  But maybe this shouldn’t be solely about thinking and thinking and thinking; maybe this should also be about doing.  Doing different, doing better, doing more.  Maybe this isn’t only about pushing myself into the past but should also be about pushing myself into the future.

Shit.  LOOK AT YOU MAKING ME HAVE A REVELATION!

3 comments:

  1. I was molested at 11 by my dad. It was a huge and powerful force in my life, and I tried to ignore it, then I made it the center of my existence, then I learned how to live with it, and how to forgive him, as well as myself. I'm a happy, mostly satisfied woman of 48, no longer kept in bondage of my past, no longer blaming anyone, just accepting that it is what it is, it happened, I survived and I'm okay. I don't think about it every single day, and when I do think about it, it isn't with fear of the pain it used to bring me. I even forgot to mention it to my last two lovers... it used to be my way of warning them that I was fragile and vulnerable. But you know, as a human I'm fragile and vulnerable, but I'm not a victim. So, that old saying that time heals all wounds, I believe it. Do what you need to do. XXOO

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  2. I am so happy you were able to read my comment for what it was. I never would want to attack you or make you feel bad. I want you to feel better. I realize I only see a small part of who you are here, but I feel like through all these years I kind of know you and really like you. I don't want you to miss life as you reflect on all the crap you've been dealt. The friend I wrote about has recently had some bad health issues and I just feel like now she will never get her chance. It's heart breaking.
    YES TO THIS:
    Maybe I can try to understand that there is no finish line when it comes to healing from trauma. That no matter how hard I try, I won’t reach a perfect and mythical state of “completely healed.” That life is going to bring shit back up no matter how far beyond it I think I am. That writing about it and talking about it IS important and necessary but I don’t have to be unhappy while waiting for myself to be “cured”. That I don’t have to put life on hold until I’m healthy enough to move forward. Because maybe I’m already healthy enough to forge ahead.

    So maybe my little comment can help and that would make me really happy!

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  3. Please remember, you help other people too especially if they have been in similar circumstances. It makes us feel like we are not alone. Your writing isn't just for you, it helps all of us!

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