My new series Raw and Real is just beginning.
My hope is that as you see some of my struggles, you will see yourself somewhere, and find help and strength in these words.
To begin at the beginning, you can click →here.
In #1, you read that I wore shame “like a coat”.
It is important to know the difference between guilt and shame.
Here is the definition given by →Psychology Today.
“Guilt: a feeling of responsibility or remorse for some offense, crime, wrong, etc., whether real or imagined.
Shame: the painful feeling arising from the consciousness of something dishonorable, improper, ridiculous, etc., done by oneself or another.”
Did you inflict the pain?
Or did someone else’s actions inflict the pain?
Even though I was very young, and naive, just a child, somewhere on the inside, I knew something was not as it should be.
Not having the knowledge or capacity to figure out what these feelings meant;
they were buried deep in the “That’s just the way it is” category.
Somehow, I didn’t even wonder if others had the same things going on in their lives.
It was assumed that they did.
That category grew larger and larger over the years of my life.
Finally after many years of repetition of the same types of “trauma and drama”, I did begin to realize that something was wrong;
not just wrong, but VERY wrong.
I began to realize that the events in my life seemed to follow a cycle.
It was of course, not the same people that were there at the beginning, but the victimization was the same;
the same in that it was victimization, but quite different in size and scope.
Advantages taken mentally and physically were more inclined to take away any ability I may have had to remove myself from the fray.
However another difference was that I was able to see the high likelihood, that not everyone I knew bore the same issues.
After countless relationships with varying amounts of “trauma and drama”, I miraculously was introduced to the man who would become my husband.
We had a small family that although not always completely high functioning, worked well, and we learned how to live together, and to power through our troubles, and lead a pretty normal and well balanced life.
(Our “kind of crazy” has been alive and well for 43 years!)
In 2001, there was of course what we Americans refer to as 9/11.
There was so much trauma; so much to absorb, so much to process.
And then, as if that were not enough, on 9/17 that my mom was diagnosed with endometrial cancer.
Treatment and care began immediately.
Her time was short, but intense.
She passed away in my living room, with her family all present, just days before Thanksgiving.
The reason this is important to the story of this post has to do with the idea of process.
While I was caring for her, I felt strong.
I felt like I could do what needed to be done.
Even after her passing, I still felt strong.
I still felt like I could do what needed to be done.
I was not looking ahead to, or even aware of, what was about to hit me.
I refer to what comes next as the →Cave Days.
There had been no time to process 9/11, much less 9/17.
I was not prepared for the loss of energy, the loss of strength, the loss of enjoying anything I had enjoyed before.
Between the mental pain, the physical pain that was radiating through my body, and the brain fog;
it took several doctors, and several “might be” diagnosis and treatments to find the problem.
During that time, I spent hours, days, weeks, and years at home, in my PJs, not moving or thinking;
It took me nearly four years to even LOOK at the items in my house that belonged to my mom.
As it says in the →Cave Days post – caves can be places of burial, or places to rest and regain strength.
It was a choice that had to be made.
I hope you’ll come back on Friday for Friday Favorites.
Then again on Monday, so we can explore “But how?” question together.
Until then …