My Shoes Part 2

I felt excited to go out into the world.

Then I dreaded leaving my house.

I gave myself a stern lecture.

Then I sweet talked myself into getting ready.

Then I dreaded like holy hell leaving my house.

So I shoved myself out into the world.

Then I wanted to go home so badly.

Then I was glad to be out in the world.

Then I couldn’t wait to get home again.

I finally got home.

And I felt like I had missed something important.

The Clearing

A mist cloaked the green in a shroud of grey

I could no more discern the sky

No longer was I able to laugh or play

All my heart could do was contract, and cry

 

Then the mist lifted and my shrunk soul awoke

The whole of my heart took wing

I found myself in a new world, bespoke

Wholly alive, alight, at once I began to sing

 

Inspired by The Daily Post Daily Word Prompt: cloaked

To the Core

I used to hate myself.

Seriously. I hated just about everything about me. I was fixated on the way I looked: I felt like a monster, something grotesque, misshapen, disgusting.

This was painful, and difficult. It is hard to relate and be in the world when you have that kind of hatred for your body.

But as I look back, the most painful kind of hatred I felt towards myself was the hatred I felt for the ways I felt and thought. I felt tormented by my own mind and feelings and sought escape in every way imaginable, including close contemplation many times and one failed attempt at ending my own life. I could not get away from this internal self I so hated. I felt like a freak trapped inside a monster’s body.

I wasn’t born with that kind of self-hatred. It developed slowly over time in my early years following trauma that created a kind of split from my own core. Losing connection to my core made me vulnerable to the outside world in a way that was devastating.

With a healthy core intact, dealing with bullies and the other social pressures at school is painful and impactful but does not warp one’s self-perception.

With a healthy core intact, a person can withstand the challenges that exist in most childhood homes where there are people with untreated mental issues, and where there are emotional, sexual and physical abuses or neglect as a result of parents who themselves were abused or neglected.

Without a healthy core intact, the affect of these kinds of external forces become stronger, louder than one’s own innate internal sense of self, sense of well-being, of any innate self-support. As a result, these events, people and experiences bend and shape one’s sense of inner and outer self and reality.

The best way I can describe living without that connection to my core sense self is to have been like a tissue blowing in the wind, this way and that, getting stuck wherever the wind took me.

I do not have multiple personality disorder, so I cannot speak to what that experience is like, and I do not mean to offend anyone who does. But I have sometimes imagined that what I experienced was somehow related. I could not hear my own internal voice most of the time. I was “hearing” the world, and it was loud and dangerous to me.

Living when you are disconnected from your core is terrifying. It is suffocating. It is lonely. It is deadly.

I am lucky, because even though that connection was severed, there was always somewhere deep within me some sense of something to keep fighting for. One tiny shred of connection to a core that I could imagine if not feel or often hear. I didn’t trust it or understand what it was. But it was there and I could sometimes hear it in the very darkest moments.

Like the moment some years ago now when I had the razor blade that I had bought and planned to use in my fingers and held to the skin of my left wrist, ready to end my suffering. That tiny shred began to whisper to me, “What if I am wrong? What if it could get better?”

That tiny shred, and the realization in the moment that followed that I was reneging on a promise I’d made to my two cats – whom I loved desperately – that I would always look after them, that they would never know fear or be homeless again after their difficult early lives feral on the streets of NYC, saved my life that day.

I have written about coming home to my own core within myself in previous posts Dormant Child and Cutting the Cord.

The work of healing my fractured soul has been profound, difficult and beautiful. It is on-going work, but I have come such a long way.

To re-connect with and then feel a permanent connection to my own core self – to know my own essence – has been at times a shockingly powerful and painful process. And at the same time, the most intricate, exquisite and intimate experience I have ever known.

One of the greatest gifts of this this connection to my core, this freeing of my inner selves (every age I have ever been) and this healing of the traumas of these selves into wholeness, has been a growing love and appreciation for my self.

I have learned to love my body for what is does, not how it looks. I have grown a gratitude for my physical abilities and strengths, and try to find joy in moving my own body, using my own voice. Today, I have reverence for all that my body contains. It contains multitudes and is wise beyond my mind’s own wisdom. It holds the Truth, and it never lies.

I look for the miracles within and without, and because I have cleared away what I can of the detriment that is not of my true essence, I find them. The detritus that remains from my past does not clog my joy as it once did. I love the detritus, too, for it holds important information. There is often even gold to be found in what remains.

I genuinely enjoy my own company today. I like the way I experience the world: my own peculiar sense of humor, the unique way I think and feel. I am no longer tortured by my own thinking. I am no longer tortured by being me.

This is huge. Not to say I do not experience anxiety, racing thoughts, negative or critical thinking (the Inner Critic, the Critical Mind, the Ego, whatever you want to call it.) I do experience all of those things and more (panic, depression, the pull towards self-destruction.)

But I am no longer a tissue blowing in the wind.

I am a mighty tree, strong and constantly expanding into the world around me. Yet I am flexible and can withstand whatever weather comes my way because I am rooted, and those roots go deep. I take nourishment from the elements that support my growth. I no longer look for sustenance from sources that can not provide what I truly need to thrive.

I live in light today. There is darkness, yes, but it is a different kind of darkness. I no longer fear the dark places, because I am always there. I trust myself to see myself through whatever comes my way.

Inspired by The Daily Post Daily Word Prompt: peculiar

With much love and thanks to the gifts and work of Suzanne Connolly.

Titanic

The voices begin, gremlin whispers at first, that become more insistent and convincing quickly, overtaking the lightness inside.

She feels her heart grip in her chest, stops breathing as if to quell them by denying them air. But they are unstoppable, somewhere inside she knows this.

The anxiety snaking through her muscles and the panic in her gut signal new chords of thought that join in with the voices. A cacophony within, compelling her to go home, get safe, now.

But there’s more than just the forceful compelling dark boom. There are silvery threads of sadness, an ache, as she looks out on the day. It is beautiful, pulsing, but the vibrant life feels separate from her somehow.

She’s torn between wanting to live in the world, to take her place in the throng, fulfill her purpose, and needing to heed the voices and the pull of the force within that wants her home.

The internal battle is ugly and choking. The warring sides are not equal. One is made stronger by the other’s resistance; the other, depleted.

Headed for the iceberg, there’s no turning back.

Just as the darkness crescendos, the lightness, the life force inside, gives up. Like giving in to the pull of an undertow, that part of her goes limp and releases to the strength of other forces. Releases into the dark of the ocean.

It is a familiar dark place, a quiet void, from which she will be spit back to shore again, at some point.

Spent, beleaguered, dazed, she will crawl back to civilization, to piece herself together, and begin again.

Inspired by The Daily Post Daily Word Prompt: crescendo

49/51

There is a life force within

It has seen me through

Black-pitched soul’s dark nights

Days so thick with despair

I could barely breathe or move

Sometimes it was so very close

If not for that push inside

To continue on this journey

The pull to end it could have won

But something in me wants to live

Inspired by The Daily Post Daily Word Prompt: continue

Residue

There's something under my skin
Something grainy, irritating
I can't get to it, make it go away
Want to cut it out

Feels like him, still there, still taking what's mine alone to give
A pressure behind my neck
An invisible yoke I can't escape

Can't get rid of the grip, can't get away
Can't rub away the imprint of his touch
These are the moments I despair
These, the moments that he wins

Inspired by The Daily Post Daily Word Prompt: grainy