April 30, 2007
Thinking Blogger, Thankful Blogger
I want to tell you, however, how you thoughtful, validating bloggers helped me turn a negative into a positive. As some of you may know, I had a blogger come on to my blog and start commenting to me and other readers in a way that left me feeling attacked and invalidated. I told the blogger that I didn't want my comment section to become a huge debate forum, so I continued the conversation with them via e-mail. The last e-mail I got from them felt downright hateful and cruel to me. This was difficult timing for me as I was just in the middle of working with my T on devastating feelings of isolation and loneliness...and that feeling that nobody can be trusted.
For a while I felt quite sorry for myself that this blogger with whom I had been acquainted for some time seemed to turn on me. But some of the things they said to me caught my attention. It wasn't anything about parts, abuse, recovery or anything like that. It was technical blog stuff.
This blogger made an accusation that I did, indeed desire an online debate; that I was lying about that. They said that I could have _____ them whenever I wanted if I hadn't wanted a debate. I can't even remember what the term was and the e-mail that contained it was too painful for me to keep, so I quickly deleted it. But, I assume the term had something to do with blocking a reader/commenter.
I've admitted this several times: I am very un-cyber savvy when it comes to anything technical on my blog. I've warned viewers that they have to go to my dot com site: www.survivorscanthrive.com to get any kind of pretty pictures and the like.
It's embarrassing to me that I haven't been able to include pictures on my blog or those neat little buttons or a blogroll, or the Blog Carnival widget, so that readers can easily link and submit to our Blog Carnival Against Child Abuse. I decided, ENOUGH! Looky, looky, over at the sidebar. I finally figured out how to get the Blog Carnival widget up there, and it's not stretched across the blog posts. Yippeeee!
Do you notice something else new over there? It's a cute little button for The Thinking Blogger Awards. Let me tell you how that came about. In addition to my new found determination to get more technical-savvy on this blog, I decided my link updates were way overdue as well. Weeks ago, my friend Keepers e-mailed me to tell me that she had nominated me for a Thinking Blogger Award. I thought that was way cool and I wanted to put up a post thanking her for it, but was embarrassed that I didn't even have an updated link to her on the sidebar.
Then, I found out that somebody else that I had a faulty, old link up to--Beautiful Dreamer--had also nominated me for the Thinking Blogger award. Wow! I'm really starting to feel the love now...and the appreciation and validation. *warm fuzzy*
So, I decided to get up off my butt and update those links. I also like to provide reciprocal links to blogger folks. Now, I don't have any kind of tracker on my blog. So, if you don't leave a comment, I don't know that you've visited here. I am savvy enough, however to know how to use Who Links To Me and Technorati. Yeah, it's embarrassing: I couldn't get the Technorati button to show up on my template either...but now that could change! ;) So anyway, I went to Technorati to see who had recently linked to me and see if I thought they were a good reciprocal link fit.
Guess what? I found another blogger, Feminist Nation, who had also nominated me for The Thinking Blogger award! Wow! Just when I was starting to think that I was, indeed pathetic, that nobody got anything helpful from my blog, and that there really was no meaning whatever for my abuse, I see that I stand corrected. Thanks, guys! I really needed that.
Since The Thinking Blogger Award is actually a meme (yes, I even know what that means) I will tag some thinking bloggers I appreciate and that will be my next post. For now, go check out all the new links on the sidebar and give these bloggers a good look-see.
April 25, 2007
Overdue Links: Or, Patience is a Virtue, but This is Ridiculous!
Someone who's been amazingly patient is Megan over at Child Protection: Serious Business. She's been waiting since the end of February. Good grief! (Hhmmmm...is grief good? Well that's really a good thing, because I've been dealing with a lot of it lately!) If we're still on, Megan's going to host the Blog Carnival Against Child Abuse in May. If you're wondering if she can handle a blog carnival, go check out her recent post: The Carnival of Australia. Great organizing, Megan! Yeah, I have faith that she can handle it.
I want to tell you how I finally got off my butt to get motivated to update things here. That will be my next post. See ya soon! :)
April 20, 2007
Where Am I?
Right now I'm dealing with a kind of cluster of parts. It's an urgent need. I have to try to work with these parts in order to stay physically safe. I'm not going to go into the triggering details, but I've had a return of some self-injury issues lately. Damn! It had been over three years since I've SI'd! Now I have to deal with that again.
Apparently there's a part who is convinced that I/we/somebody has to be punished. Oh goody. Like I didn't already receive enough punishment from my parents.
What really freaks me out is this part that I've discovered who is really identified with my perpetrator parents. She's especially identified with my mother. I've heard of this and read about this type of thing before. I just can't believe I'm doing it. I feel very frustrated and disgusted about it. Not to mention scared shitless.
About three weeks ago, after I got triggered really bad, I had an SI incident, but it didn't feel like it was me. For one thing, he didn't do it right and was doing it for entirely different reasons from what I consciously did it in the past. In the past, it was in a trance state--kind of a form of dissociation itself--and actually made me feel somewhat better because afterward I would think, "See, I'm alive. I matter at least this much."
This time it was a punishment for supposedly being a bad mother. This person (who felt male) thought he needed to inflict pain as punishment. My therapist and I have been calling this part "The henchman." Apparently, he works for the woman who's identified with my mother. In therapy, she didn't want to be bothered to talk to me or my T, but at home I had one scary encounter with her.
After running into the bathroom and locking the door (which I often do when I'm triggered and switching all over the place). I was having a conversation with DeeGee (as in D.G., which stands for "Doom and Gloom"). She tends to be a very black-or-white thinker and is usually very "Woe is me" negative. She was claiming that we never get a break with my son and I was begging to differ with her--things have been much better with him this school year.
All of a sudden, DeeGee quickly retreated and I got this terrifying feeling and visual. I don't usually get any kind of visual with my parts. I usually sense them, hear them, or they just kinda push me aside (to the back, whatever) and take over. This was like a palpable, terrifying presence in the room. You know, the kind that makes the hair stand up on the back of your neck. It was like some evil creature rising up out of the black deep. Then she spoke. Yikes, she sounded like my mother! She said, "You don't get a break. You don't deserve a break!" Aaaahhhh! I got out of there right away. My bathroom was no longer a safe place at that moment.
I was trying to figure out who this character reminded me of. Yes, a character; someone from a story. I have a boy who was not born until 1997. But, somehow I remember a character from the Disney movie, "The Little Mermaid." I had to Google her. Her name is Ursula, the octopus-type evil sea witch. Good grief! I've got someone like that living inside me? Lord help me!
Mercifully, I don't seem to be aware of her out and wreaking havoc very often. On the other hand, her henchman comes out whenever I think I'm a bad person and get triggered in that way. He wants to bash my head in. Enter another part who keeps the body still so that can't happen. I've been calling her Serena. She's not exactly serene, but she does seem to be successful at keeping everything calm. It's an eerie calm, really. An outside viewer would think me downright catatonic when she's out.
It's not that I'm depressed when I'm in this state. It's just that I don't move. The other day, my husband came home from work while I was sitting in a chair in this state. He finally asked, "Am I speaking to Marj? Where's Marj?" Serena spoke only seven words: "I'm here because I can stay calm." That about sums up her role.
Just the other day--when the urge to be physically violent was particularly overwhelming--Serena got very assertive. She stated very firmly and clearly that we were not permitted to look at anything, hear anything or think about anything. She said that I/we/the body could blink, swallow and breathe. And that was it. Period. My husband and son were arguing at the time and the sound was triggering me badly. So, I reclined on my bedroom floor right next to my humidifier. I clicked it on. It was able to drown out all sound. I stared at the blank, white ceiling. I must of stayed there for almost two hours.
Every time I started to think, "This is stupid." or "This is extreme and unnecessary," and started to get up off the floor, I realized the method to the madness. Anytime I started to think about anything, I got the strong urge to injure myself. So, instead of fighting it, I've just let Serena take over at these stressful times.
I'm starting to feel really ganged up on and out-numbered. But, I'm trying to remember that each part was created for a reason and plays a role. My T asked me if there was a part inside who believed they needed to be punished. I guess it makes sense for the punisher to have a punishee, doesn't it? We've been working on that this week. The pain is immense. I think the depths of the pain scares me even more than the horror of the evil.
I feel like some swimmer who thought she was strong and could take on the crossing of the English Channel. Only, now I'm out here in the water all alone and I realize what I'm crossing is vast. It's a vast sea of grief, pain, terror and horror. What I'm really attempting to cross is the entire Atlantic Ocean. I think, "Of my God! I should never have attempted this! I've got to turn back!" The problem is, I'm halfway across now and it would take just as long to go back as it would to continue on.
Here's the other thing: I have to do it for that little girl who is so convinced that she has no value whatever and deserves all the abuse she gets. She's lost there; scared and alone. I have to sacrifice whatever it takes to finally save her. She deserves that much. I deserve to rescue myself. Even if I have to swim an entire ocean to reach her...to reach the safe shore of my true self.
April 10, 2007
Shattering the Silence of Sexual Violence
As usual, when I just feel too overwhelmed with my personal healing issues to even make written sense of it, I like to at least put up a post that raises awareness. So, this post is dedicated to SAAM.
Since I'm from Chicago, this SAAM project caught my eye: It's the "Art of Awareness: Shattering the Silence of Sexual Violence" event organized by the Chicago Alliance Against Sexual Exploitation (CAASE). There will be a film festival, art, poetry and music at various downtown Chicago locations April 13th through the 15th. Info is at www.caase.org. CAASE is also involved in a community art project that introduces a new spin on the awareness bracelet--it's called The Binding Project. Info is at www.bindingproject.com.
At least I'll have this up, if I don't get around to organizing an edition of The Blog Carnival Against Child Abuse this month. I've got a host lined up for May, so it will eventually hit the road again. Anybody out there feel up to squeezing in a host on your blog for April?