If you are looking for something real, always remember that we are attracted to the energy we deal.
My mother has recently opened up to me about her past for the first time in my life. She was born and raised in East Prussia, in a farming community. She was 7 years old when the war started.
We started talking about one of my Aunts that I do not have a lot of contact with. What I do know is that for most of my life she has been very protective of others.
I remember as a child when we were at her house we were always told to be careful, and where we could and couldn’t play. I always felt like we had to be super careful so as not to cause my aunt anxiety.
My mom told me about here experience and feelings during the war the war she stated she was not scared at all during that time. I inquired why, and she told me, “I was young, I thought it was a game”.
“But Tante was older, and knew what was going on, so she would pretend it was a game for us, we would hide in bunkers as the Russians or the Poles came searching for us. She kept us safe”
This morning talking to Nikki, I brought this up, and realized something. My aunt is scared all the time that others need protection, because she, as a child, gave up here innocence and held up a strong face for her 7 siblings, at 10 years old.
I don’t have a relationship with her today at all. I always felt uneasy being around her, and still do. I wish I could let her know how grateful I am for what she did. I wish she knew how much she did for all her and our family.
Thank you Tante.
Last night my 10 year old daughter and me were talking as we snuggled in her bed before she went to sleep. I have been home watching the kids while my wife is at a Supernatural Conference, and have been dealing with processing really old traumas around shame and worth. I was tired, grumpy, and ready to just zone out and watch some eye crack (John Wick).
My daughter brought up something that I did to her when she was 6 years old, something that I haven’t thought about at all, but knew exactly what she was talking about the second she mentioned it.
When Annabelle was in first grade, she started having anxiety about going to school, but not just your normal butterflies in the stomach, full blown anxiety attacks that at many times led her to vomiting while we walked to her class.
For some background, I was a very anxious person for most of my life. I have been hospitalized four times because the pain in my soul was so intense for so long that the only relief I could imagine was not existing any more.
At age 21, a few months before me and Nikki were going to get married, I was in the hospital waiting for the nurse to call my name so that I could get my vasectomy. I had gone to 2 classes, and met with countless doctors who told me that at my age I should not be doing this, but I knew it was right.
I knew it was right, not because I didn’t want children: I love children. I did it because I thought it was not fair to introduce another being into a world that felt so scary and empty, and that it was not fair to pass my genes off to another person who may have to deal with the same world view. I had no question in my mind that I was making the correct decision.
As the nurse called my name for the procedure, I couldn’t go through with it, and ran out of Kaiser without letting the staff know I would not be going through with it.
So, as my daughter started displaying signs of anxiety, I got lost in my own trauma of childhood: the fear that she would be hospitalized, or kill herself, the guilt of bringing a child into this world with the curse that I was raised with, the helplessness of watching something so innocent get pummeled by their body and mind, and the knowledge through experience that no matter what I said or did, I had very little control over how and when she would get through this.
It had gotten to the point where every day me or Nikki would have to wage a war against our daughters fears to get her to enter the classroom. There were many times that me or the teacher would have to almost carry her through the door. Once she got in the door she would be fine, and come back saying she had a great day, but getting her through the door was a battle through hell every day.
She started running away from us once we got to school, running away from the teacher, running away screaming that she was going to die if we made her go in. She would say things like “Goodbye cruel world, hello death”. She would say if we understood how much it hurt her we would not make her go in.
And every word stabbed my heart, because I had been through the same thing, knew how it felt to have those that are supposed to be looking out for you force you to do things that feel like they will kill you, that make every cell in your body scream for an end to this experience.
I was so scared, and helpless, and embarrassed, and terrified. I didn’t know how to balance the responsibility to get my child to school, with the knowledge that by doing so I was pushing her past her pain threshold. How to balance my need for the teacher to help, with the needs of the other children who had to do without their teacher while we tried to coerce Annabelle into the classroom. The fear that socially she would be stigmatized by her peers as weak, broken, or scary.
For Christmas she had gotten a La La Loopsy doll from Santa that she loved sooooooo much. One day, after a week were she was late to class over 30 minutes most days due to the struggle, she started running away. I told her that if she didn’t go to class I would have to take away her doll, which caused her to panic more, and run farther (hollow threats were the norm now). After about an hour of trying to get her to go to class, watching passerby’s shoot what I interpreted as judging glances and me (“whats wrong with him, why can’t he control her, he must be an awful parent”), I told her that if she didn’t come with me to class at the count of 3, I would take away her La La Loopsy doll for a week.
She ran away.
I finally got her to class, but at that point I had made so many threats to get her in class and not followed through with them, that I felt I would have to do this one, that maybe if I followed through with a punishment, it would help her fall in line (exactly the same tactic my parents took, which I can assure you doesn’t work). When she got home, happy as a clam after a great day of school, I took her to her room and told her La La Loopsy was going away for a week.
She cried for over an hour.
But I held strong, this is how I will fix it, its because of my weak backbone that she is suffering, and once we get through this she will be better, and it will be because I made the tough choices.
I put the doll in the upper left corner of the closet in me and Nikki’s bedroom, and closed the door. We eventually negotiated that she could go in at night and say goodnight to the doll, and every night we would. I felt deep guilt every time, but knew it was the right way to do things.
By the end of the 7 days, when she got the doll back, she was so happy, and I really believe I had done something beneficial for her. My guilt faded, and she went on with loving the doll.
Annabelle brought this up as we snuggled in her bed, and started emotionally expressing how deeply that experience affected her. She told me how when we weren’t noticing she would sneak into our room, open the closet door to see the doll, and cry because she just wanted to hold it. How she didn’t understand how her being in pain was a reason to take away something she loved.
And I knew I had done something that had damaged an innocent soul. I had done something that as she was talking about it, I could feel her close it up and hide some of the pain because it hurt too bad. Something that in her later life she will talk to her friends or therapists about how damaging and unfair it was to happen, and how deep it hurt her. I had caused her trauma, at a level that at that age she was unable to comprehend or deal with, so she blocked it, and held it in her body, and filtered all other events in her life through it.
Because I took something that made her feel good, and safe, and happy, and used it as a weapon against her because I was unable to hold and own the guilt, shame, fear, and helplessness I was feeling, own my own trauma of being in the same situation as a child, and having the same things happen to me, and having those that were supposed to protect me attack instead.
I held space for my daughter, as I was completely activated and felt my mind and body switch to defense mode, I was able to sit and feel her pain with her. I told her that no one should have treated any six year old that way. I told her she has every right to be hurt by this, and to be angry at me, and hold this against me, that there is no excuse for what I did. I told her she does not need to forgive me, but that I was truly sorry for my actions. I told her every feeling she had on this was valid and allowed. As she started closing up around the pain, I told her that is OK, but not to block this trauma, to keep a little bookmark on it, and go back and process it when and how she is able. I told her this was a big deal, and I couldn’t ever know how much it damaged her, but I know it damaged her deep.
Not once did I try to justify why I did this to her, try to get her see how much pain I was in when I did this. I just held her, felt, listened, and reaffirmed how fucked up what I did was.
I am not beating myself up in any way, and not defending myself either. I am owning this. I hurt someone deep. I scarred an innocent, that I love. I did what others had done to me, what I have expressed in tears to therapists many times and explained how no one should ever hurt something so helpless and beautiful.
And maybe now I can start coming in from a different perspective on those things that were done to me as an innocent, things where others may have been so scared and overwhelmed that the only ideas they could act on the help me ended up wounding me deeper that they can even know. People taking the only right action they could.
I know I cant fix this, and my daughter will have to work through it as she progresses through her life, and is able to process it. She may always have a little part that is scared of me for this, that is scared the world will take away what she loves when she needs it most.
After my daughter fell asleep in my arms, in soft tears I went scourged the internet trying to remember what that doll looked like. There are tons of these dolls, and I could not remember exactly which one it was. Did it have orange or pink hair? Blue or black eyes?
I kept going back and forth between three different dolls, and couldn’t remember which one it was. Then I noticed the shoes, and remembered this doll had the most annoying shoes because the had ribbons attached to them that you had to tie up its leg, and Annabelle would always take them off and have me put it back on again, and I could never get it quite right, and I dreaded it every time.
I ordered on new, in the package, that I will give to her. I will tell her this is hers, and I will never take it away from her no matter what she does, that she deserves to have the things in her life that make her feel happy and safe, and nobody has the right to take it away.
Maybe a start to healing for her, or me. We will see.
And I knew it was the whole truth,
But could only admit it part way.
90% is the best I can own,
because 10% is promised in tithe
To The Old God.
It doesn’t play nice,
It plays in blood, bone and meat
And demands the complete sacrifice
Of the highest parts of me
“You will never get to the place you seek
because you must give to me first,
I am the one you owe
All your firstborn fruits.
Bow down, no lay, no sprawl on the filthy ground
And give me what I demand.
The part you owe me
Not much, but the best
And if you dare try to climb too high,
I will gut your children in front of you
I will shame you with 7 billion eyes,
And a multitude more voices
Until you are cowering in corner,
Covered in your own spit, and shit, and bile
With no one to turn to, and no direction to go.
I will make you know fear and pain,
Confusion so deep you will lose any sense of self
And wander lost through the earth.
And I will laugh, as you stumble
And eat your parts while you weep
And if you test me, like Babel,
I will destroy your walls,
And send you chaos, wars, and suffering
And you will beg to worship me again
For I own the best of you,
And so it is”
But today I see you,
I am terrified, but I see.
Claws dripping with thousands of years
Of our own blood and innards
And I will give you your tithe today,
But know that there will be a time
Where I will see that all the things you threaten
Are out of your grasp,
And we will meet and have to make
A New Agreement.
So today, it occurred to me.
I had a feeling I was close to it over the past year, but it kept flirting with me, getting closer, and pulling away.
My mind keeps trying to make me prove myself. It does this by a constant underpinning of judgmental thoughts that are internally directed. These thoughts are then superimposed on things in the outside world: circumstances, situations, and people.
For example, if a person has a funny look on their face, my mind will say “well, that’s because they think your a jerk”. Then I will get in an internal debate about whether or not I am a jerk. All this time, that person doesn’t know I even exist. My mind has used their face as ammunition to get into a debate with myself.
I Am Not What My Mind Says, Or How I Feel This Moment
This thought came while I was looking for a job, and was feeling like I would never get hired because I am not smart enough, trained enough, whatever enough.
Then it hit me, I am intelligent, hard working, honest person no matter if I get hired or not. This is just true.
Which leads to the second part of the revelation:
The Core Truths About Myself Are Permanent
They have been around for as long as I can remember. They do not change, no matter if the mind agrees with them or not.
No matter what my head says, these thoughts do not trump the PERMANENT TRUTH of my Being. The thoughts and feelings will dissipate, but the facts are still the facts.
These thoughts and feelings are illusions. They try to prove to myself ,through outside validation, things that are already true at my core. At their best they give me a tiny glimpse of my true self.
At their worst they are demons who are intent on devouring any idea that I have that I am worthy to live on a planet with you.
So, here are my truths. I am not saying them for them to be validated, but instead to own that no matter what my mind and body say, I am:
Overflowing with Love For Others
Passionate about What I Believe In
Very Intellignet (sp?)
Funny as Shit
Quick To Forgive
A Relentless Seeker
Devoted to Those I Love
A Loving Son
A Good Brother
Have a Natural Musical Talent
A Beautiful Free Spirit
An Amazing Father
A Hard Worker
An OK Writer
A Loving, Loyal Husband
A Dedicated Employee
A Quick Learner
A Good Friend
A Lover of Life
A Beautiful, Flattering, and Necessary Part of This Universe
Hush a band of gold
Hush you’re in a story
I heard somebody told
Tear the promise from my heart
Tear my heart today
You have found another
Baby I must go away
Hang down your head for sorrow
Hang down your head for me
Hang down your head tomorrow
Hang down your head Marie
Hush my love the rain now
Hush my love was so true
Hush my love a train now
But it takes me away from you
Hang down your head for sorrow
Hang down your head for me
Hang down your head tomorrow
Hang down your head Marie
I feel so fucking lost,
I have searched and searched and searched and searched and searched and searched and searched and searched and searched and searched for peace within myself.
Now I know it is inside myself, but the searching part of me is so trained to search, that it cant just accept that something is there, and let it be. The only times I have ever truly relaxed was when I was high, or when I was graced with a larger perspective.
I know the larger perspective is available, as drugs are no longer an option, but I can’t make it fucking come. I just sit and wait, and it doesn’t come. In total I have lived 40 years on earth, had 2 years of peace from drugs, and a total of about 7 months peace from the gift of a larger perspective. That does not seem right.
I am told to relax, when I have never learned how to relax. I don’t know what I do to relax. Everything that used to provide temporary distraction doesn’t seem to work right now.
I’m frustrated, and feel very alone. I have a wonderful life, and am surrounded by beautiful people, but the voice that searches keeps searching.
I feel like Charlie Brown trying to kick that fucking football, and a part of me is Lucy, pulling it away.
I just don’t fucking know today………… It all feels so distant, and so close at the same time.
This life is so confusing for me, and part of me knows it is so simple.
I think too much, I know, and I don’t know how to not think, but I have done it.
If anyone reading this can relate, or knows what is going on, pray, dance, sing, cry, do whatever you do. If you are in the struggle, I empathize. If you have peace, please send some.
PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE.
I know how to earn things, and it seems this is something that can not be earned, only remembered. I have such a backstory that clouds my perspective, that I don’t know how to let go. I know it is all in the present moment, and can’t find out how to look.
I have learned to process my emotions, and am letting them in, without judging, and they just keep coming.
But the ratio between the times I have known peace, and the struggle is severely unbalanced in favor of the latter. That can’t be right, I haven’t done anything to deserve that, in a world where balance is the key.
I feel like I am in a bubble, separate from everything else, while aware I am not at all separate, and the prison I am in is my of my own design. I have the key, I made the lock, but I have no idea how to implement the fucking things.
This is just a rant, just a bunch of stuff in me that I want to yell out. I will keep looking in silence. I will keep being, I will keep earning if necessary. A part of me is frustrated, and that part is taking the focus right now.
I know there is peace,
I know it is all love,
I know more than I know anything else,
Just walking I guess.
And I came to the place where the Guard was standing,
And could feel the thickness of the walls he was guarding.
And he would not let us in,
So we sat, and felt the walls,
And felt the hurt,
Until we remembered we were the same thing
And the guard was scared,
And felt shame for keeping the child locked up for so long,
And was scared that it would be destroyed
For its failings
And I reminded him we are the same,
And he is loved,
And all he did was not his fault,
We were doing it to ourselves.
And the walls started thinning out,
And as they did, another presence came out,
And it was full of rage and anger
At the guard, so the guard shrank back.
And the Avenger came from the shadows,
Screaming that this is unfair,
Why has this been covered up for so long?
And he was thirsty for blood
And we let him be angry,
And let him be thirsty,
Until we remembered that we were the same
The guard, the avenger, and the observer
And We reminded ourselves that we had done the best we could,
And we were all responsible for the wall,
And we were all trying to help the child,
In the best way we knew how
And we were loved,
And allowed to be angry,
And the avenger threw visions
Of cousins pinned to walls
With vile threats of death and dismemberment,
And an uncle bloodied and bruised
And the walls thinned out to reveal a hallway,
And there were spinning colors at the end
And a nauseous feeling filled our bellies,
Deep, deep inside.
And the guard flinched with guilt
For keeping the child locked up,
And for fear of the avenger
And we observed ourselves as one
And a wooden door became visible
With vertically running strips of dark metal
About one and a half inches thick
And in the upper center was a window
The window was lined with iron bars,
And inside there was a couch,
With a film projector, projecting onto the wall
And on the couch, entranced was the child
And the nausea filled our bellies
And we tried to make out the film that was playing
Over and over on repeat,
But could only get the gist
There was a bed,
And I know the place,
My brother on the bed, had vomited
And I felt the urge to vomit,
And then it goes blank
And we tried to communicate with the child,
But he was entranced in the film,
Unable to pull away
And we tried to remind him
We were the same,
We are here to help you
And a lightness came into our bellies,
And it felt OK for a second
But no deeper did it get.
And the film still remained blurry,
And it was time to go
So we said goodbye, and started out the hallway.
And the child faded,
And the avenger faded,
And the guard faded,
And the nausea remained.
Please excuse me,
but I must go inside now
To try and find,
What I have always searched for.
This is not a rejection,
or insult to the external.
This is in appreciation for that,
which the external has taught.
I must face the scary thing,
or things, that hide within,
and follow the signposts,
I have been confusing for destinations.
This may take days, or weeks,
months or years,
the timeline is of no concern.
What is of concern is the intent,
to dig as deep as possible,
and find the hurt thing,
that has been calling out, in pain and love.
To comfort the guard who has,
locked the hurt thing up,
and thank it for the job it has done,
in keeping us safe.
To loosen the grips,
On that those parts I have held on to
And begged “please stay forever”,
I will say, “you are free, to do as you wish”.
To find the parts of me,
That scream “LOOK AWAY”,
And let them wail, as long as they must
Until the yells turn into song
Until the tears flowing from their eyes,
morph into a river of feelings
That have been waiting to be acknowledged,
Forever, as part of me
To let each part of me that feels divided,
Know it is not.
Know that we are in this together,
Know that it is loved, as it is.
Yes, I am scared to go inside
Yes, I am scared that in the end I will come back defeated.
Yes, I am scared that what I feel is in me will not be found.
But still, I must go inside,
Because that is where the signs have all been pointing,
And still the last place I thought to look
So now I look.
And there was never a war,
It was always misguided love,
There were never bombs, bullets, or fists
Just adoration and longing
When both sides of my soul finally realize,
That continuing to fight the other
Is to continue to fight itself,
But have forgotten how to drop their guards
A problem unsolvable by the mind
A puzzle larger than “me”,
But experienced by “me”
I guess all that’s left to do,
Is sit and watch,
This too with compassion
And hope that the truth,
Can pull together two parts,
And make them whole,