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There's a blog magazine I read called What's your grief?. It helps me process some of what I feel in a more tangible way. Recently I saw an entry called 64 Things I Wish Someone Had Told Me About Grief and immediately honed in on number thirty, “The last 24 hours of their lives will replay in your mind” and 36, “You lose yourself, your identity, meaning, purpose, values, your trust”.

I knew I'd go all over the emotional scale with grief. I knew I'd be in disbelief. I knew I'd sit shocked and trip over myself. I knew I'd bargain, that the world would look different, that I'd have memories so real it felt like I was standing there with him again. I knew these things, but I didn't know my ability to trust would be tested. I wasn't expecting that. I wasn't expecting to feel betrayed by the entire world for having the audacity to continue on without him. I was offended. How could you? How could you possibly keep spinning as if nothing happened? It's an insult.

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Holding Back the Light - unavailable
Holding Back the Light - unavailable

I hugged the lady very tight. She knows my sister. She gave me an update. My sister has locked herself in the apartment and there is still no movement, no contact, nothing has changed. They do know she was last seen in there. No phone activity, no FB activity.

I hand wrote a letter to her. I said nothing negative at all. I said she doesn't deserve to die and that I understand a lot of what she's going through. I asked her to rethink things, to let her support system do what she gathered them to do. She sought out good, solid supporters.  I know 2 of them personally.

Of her friends, I asked them to have patience with her. She's a 50-year-old woman who doesn't know what to do with herself. She has to be told what to do and when she's told, she will do exactly as she's instructed. She won't do more or less. The lady kept looking at me like it should be simple for her to function because she's a 50-year-old woman. I said, she's not a 50-year-old woman who has matured. Being on her own is culture shock. She has no clue what she's doing, none. I shared the story that tells exactly how she thinks. I told the story about the garbage bag that my mother told her to get. She got the bag and then waited to be told to put the trash in it. Her friend put her hand over her mouth then said, that's exactly what she does. She waits to be told what to do.

I asked that they be gentle with her and understand that her eye sight is limited, ...continue reading

The Last Laugh - available
The Last Laugh - available

Content: Spiritual abuse. Emotional and psychological abuse, homelessness, covert sexual abuse

Mother taught me that if I do the little things right I'll do the big things right. She taught me that a strong foundation must be laid but that all foundations start with a grain of sand. Their grains packed together to support materials much stronger than a grain of sand standing alone. To build up a solid foundation we must do the small things right.

My mother taught me that I have no foundation and that my presence was like a sledgehammer against her house.

My mother taught me a scripture that says, "By my God I can climb a wall" and a scripture that says, "If a tree gets cut down it will sprout again."

My mother placed walls around me I felt I could never escape. Inside those walls she did her best to root out willfulness, individualism and hope.

My mother taught me that I can only trust her and that I don't have the intelligence to live without her. She said I'd never survive out here in the world, that she alone could protect me.

She said to tell her if anyone ever touched me wrong. It was her hands around my mouth, my neck. She touched every aspect of me and left me ruptured.

My dear mother, my poor mother is food for worms. How undignified. I hate that.

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Today's therapy discussion focused on family matters: mother's thorough brainwashing and effective divisive tactics, scapegoating, emotional boundaries between myself and all birth family and a recap of nightmares from a few days back. After writing this entry I was reminded of the paintings "Resilience Tree," so I included them in the entry.

Resilience Tree

I was awake all night and until around 10:30 this morning. I had my session to go over the graphically violent and blood dream about cannibals and going to a psychiatric prison for the mentally insane because I was guilty of murdering my child self, the inner child of my sister and the inner child of my brother. I'll pick up more on that topic later.

We talked about the complete lack of protection from my mother: physical, emotional and spiritual responsibilities were ignored or out right withheld.

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My mother is dead. My brother is dead. My sister is wasting away, drowning in guilt, anger and fear. I have no inheritance. Its gone because my mother did not protect it. No one thinks to themselves, I may have someone take over everything because I'm going to develop Alzheimer's.

In 1992 when I left that home I knew I'd caused major upset in family dynamics. When I changed my name I knew I'd given up absolutely everything that would have come to me, everything. The thing is, do we ever really expect our parents to die when we look at them as gods? When they stand tall as tyrants over the children they abuse, they're seen as all powerful, unstoppable. There is no future, there's nothing to ground you, nothing to hold on to. So how could I have really known she'd truly disown me and that she and my sister would pretend I do not exist? It wasn't until 2012 that I discovered they'd erased me from their lives. She presented herself as a woman with one daughter. My sister presented herself as an only child.

As a child, my mother showed only her professional side to onlookers. She was well put together and had guys flanking her. If you've ever seen a guy rush to open a door for a pretty girl, that's what happened to my mother all the time. She truly was physically beautiful, but her focus was money and doling out pain.

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I don't remember how old I was and for the life of me I can't remember what school I went to or what home I was in. I just remember knowing I had to get help because she was going to kill us. We were in trouble. The mother was going to drive the car over the bridge and kill us. Before we reached the bridge which separates the states, she stopped at a rest stop. I remember walking in and seeing the maps and noticing how clean the glass was on the windows.

I left the welcome center and restroom area before them which gave me the opportunity to see that a car had pulled up and parked a bit away from our car. Right then and there I had the chance to say something. I got to the car and wrote down my name and address. I said we needed help and that our mother had been ranting and raving and that she stated very clearly she was going to kill us. I was sure to say she wasn't kidding and that the note wasn't a joke. After I scribbled that letter in the back seat of the car, I got back out and walked over to their car where a woman and a child sat with the passenger side open. I tossed the folded paper at her with my left hand and kept walking. She said, you dropped something. I kept on walking as if nothing happened.

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When I was a kid and I moved around from home to home, I had the legal right to contact Jehovah's Witnesses and talk to them. I contacted them every single chance I could.

Since I had so much contact with Jehovah's Witnesses through various avenues, it stands to reason that I'd run into some of them now. I ran into the daughter of a woman my sister and I stayed with. She knows me. She remembers how bad it was and what we came from. She knows my birth name. She knows I have multiple personality disorder. I felt naked standing in front of her but I couldn't help but think to myself, Faith, you lived through impossible situations. Your reality, Faith, is that you lived when others didn't. That means something. That took a lot of work. And I'm still alive. That means something. It takes a lot of work just to exist. Yeah, my mind is fractured and my body is ... broken.... but how amazing is it to have an opportunity to truly live in freedom from ... them? How amazing and .... nauseating. The memories and nightmares associated with enduring her makes me nauseous but they do not erase the fact that I have an enduring spirit and that I truly understand what it means to be free.

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I was nervous, again. Dr. D said it's normal for a person to feel some anxiety when going to a session, even when they've been in treatment a long time. We talked about the Passion Flower tincture I made and how effective it is. I keep forgetting to take it though. I still scribble to ease anxiety.

We talked about the two dreams and what I think they might mean. I told him that the dream where I was on the outside of the car while my mother and sister were inside reminds me of how I usually felt like an outsider in that family. I hated them for what they did and said. I hated secrets, most of all I didn't keep to the rules of Master and servant the way my sister did. After paying severely for running my mouth one would think I'd learn to keep it closed but nope. Sometimes I was annoyed or out right disgusted by their pretense and let it show on my face or I rolled my eyes and said, "Oh please!" I paid for it. I understand that death in dreams isn't always negative. In this case we all three died after recklessness by my mother. Recently the 'death' of hope that my sister and I will ever be anything other than relatives has settled in. That death means life without hoping in ghosts.

Lady in the Stars - Redbubble

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The cab driver forgot me today so I wasn't able to go in and see Dr. D or see my psychiatrist for refills.

We talked about my brother which is discussed at the end. We talked about my self-destructive spirit since the nightmare I had about my mother two weeks back. I couldn't didn't shake it without self harm so we talked in depth with him asking many questions.

  • What was the trigger?
    A nightmare followed by someone calling me a liar and crazy. That word "liar" hits hard.
  • What specifically was I trying to destroy?
    The feeling of humiliation and guilt associated with the nightmare.
  • What did I try first?
    I painted. I walked. I threw darts. I did my yoga stretches. I scribbled and scribbled to the point that I now need to purchase more printer paper. I scribbled a lot because you can't self harm and sketch at the same time.
  • What emotions did I feel leading up to self harm? 
    Guilt. Shame. Humiliation. Small. Insignificant. Dirty. Angry. Desperate.
  • What emotion did I expect to feel during self harm?
    I expected to feel motivated to reach the goal of relief. I felt determined. I knew I was falling back on old habits, something I haven't done in over five years.
  • Did I consider the consequences?  Yes.
  • What emotions did I feel after?
    Tired. I slept like a baby!
  • Do I regret it?
    No. I don't see it as a positive but it felt necessary. Someone inside said we felt cornered by our own emotions and memories associated with abuse and we came out fighting...fighting us.
  • What steps in my head did I take to get to the point where I was able to carry out self harm?
    I knew in my head what I wanted to do. I kept it in the back of my mind. Several days went by with this thought. The desire to self harm was discussed in therapy.  I WANTED to self harm and so each day not doing it almost felt like I was wearing down my defenses. I know how much paper I went through to direct my attention elsewhere, but the thought of self harm was in my head. I wore down my defenses with time. Maybe it's like a person who stopped smoking or drinking, whatever, and they know in the back of their mind there's the desire to do this drug and they drag out doing it; sometimes rationalizing until the opportunity presents itself in such a way it lets you feel justified.
    I felt stagnant. I was just sitting there with a lump of crap on my being. It wasn't moving. It just sat there stinking up my being. I played 2 songs over and over again to push me over the emotional edge so I could self harm.
  • Is there immediate risk of repeat this behavior?
    No. I don't believe so.

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Bless the Child We talked over the phone and tears streamed down my face. As I reached for a Kleenex a flash of a woman who had tears like flowers, flashed in my mind. She had no color. I couldn't even see her lips or nose, just a thin black line in the shape of her eyes with daisy flowers pouring out and falling down her face.

I was trying to get myself together and hear him tell me it was a dream and it can't hurt me. I said, my choices were bad. I could choose one bad or the other but no matter what I was going to end up with bad. He said, you're right. I said, I need to remember that I'm 45 years old. I have my own home. I have boundaries and I do not ever have to be in a situation where I feel like her child again. He said, you're right.

I'm ok. I can flip a switch in my head and turn her off. This is my head and the only voices I need to hear are those I want to hear. I have good choices now and I'm ok. It was a dream and dreams can not hurt me. I can turn off her voice with the flip of a switch.  ...continue reading