Free Sowing. It’s a gardening term that my therapist taught me as she gifted me some parsley, basil, and chia seeds. It means seeds that do not require much tending to grow.
The last year and a half, I have required so much tending and care, that I am happy to be at my free sown phase. I have happy days. I have real moments when the dark foggy abyss abates, and I feel the sunlight on my face. Those moments are longer and longer. Words cannot adequately give gratitude to how that feels.
The pivotal moment for me occurred when I saw my friend on the street and presented with the opportunity to tell him forgave him. I reiterated I knew his daddy caused him to do the things he did to me. Something happened that day, he told me that he was wrong, relating also, his father often told him to do things he should not have done. I was no longer the only one saying these things happened. I no longer doubted my memories. A tender mercy that I prayed for, answered very directly. My husband witnessed his confession as he sat silently in the car beside me.
Since our conversation, surprisingly, days passed without a thought of the abuse or my abusers. The long-awaited mental reprieve granted. Not to spread all sunshine and roses, some days are still hard, but many more happy days of light than before.
What of my alters?
They still remain vigilent. I am learning to live with them and they me.
Gidget fulfills her job as protector, and gets quite upset if I do not let her do her job. She speaks up in situations that I should speak up and don’t or won’t. She also loves to laugh and play jokes. A few weeks back my husband and I went on a date. Gidget came out. I had shrimp on my plate. When she allowed me to come back there were green beans in a smiley face with one shrimp as a nose staring at me. Apparently she had told Mother she was not going to let me eat all the food at the restaurant. She really likes Ole Times, and shrimp.
Squirt, or Little Shanna, her feelings are so tender. She has been happier. She watched Curious George a couple of times. Mother said she gave her a play- by-play of what George was doing. She still has some of her fears, but she is feeling safer.
Adrian. I do not know what to say about Adrian. Mother can talk to her and get through to her. She does not like me, AT ALL. She is very angry. Though relatively quiet the last few weeks, she still makes part our “family”.
I suppose the dream of being “normal” – alter free- when I started to feel better, isn’t going to happen. They are my normal. Learning to live with them and accepting this part of my life is key.
I started blogging to help others, and myself become stronger. The last several months, I did not have it in me to carry myself, much less have any bright days to share and lift others. My internal protector, who now goes by Gidget, not “the mean one”, isn’t mean at all. She does have a temper. She can swear like a sailor when she gets angry, but her goal has been to protect me and “squirt” and to make me have a little more fun in life.
What now seems eons ago, but was only weeks ago, she told me angrily, “Not everyone deserves to be forgiven.” That statement lead to pandora’s box being opened, and discovering and recalling that my “original” abuser, was a pawn and victim himself in his father and step-mother’s sadistic game. Who knows how long it went on with him, but Little Shanna endured about a year and a half of sexual abuse. Holding tightly to the secret, the sadness, and the guilt, standing beside her, a valiant protector Gidget.
She is remembering that she did fight now, she let me know, I fought and begged to go home. There is only so much a 4 and 5 year old child can do. Especially when you have two adults there, who are holding you. Holding you in a way that you do not bruise though. Hugging you. Adults you once trusted. Adults you should still be able to trust. Hearing my dog barking outside because she heard my cries. Gidget, that is where she got her name from. My faithful protector back then.
She has introduced herself to most of my family and friends. I am not really comfortable with that, but I suppose she is making it so that I do not have to worry about it. Fear of rejection is so high. She gave my closest friends what for the other day, for absolutely no reason. Of course I had to apologize profusely after I returned. She seems to forget my life, our life, is not all that everyone has to deal with.
She and I have become almost like sisters. Boy howdy can she get mad at me. If I try to smooth something over when it is clearly not my fault, or heaven forbid I blame her for something that happens, and I do not know if she had anything to do with it or not. My husband says I need to learn to chose my words more carefully. I told him, I am not used to someone knowing my intimate thoughts, and responding to them. This is a new ball game for me.
She has quite the sense of humor. I hope she does not mind me sharing this. First off, she is country. Very country. Several people have mentioned that she has a serious twang to her voice. After therapy yesterday, I told my parents that I wanted to try to actually eat out at my favorite place. Ole Times Country Buffet. I set up ground rules. My back would be to the wall, and I would be able to see my parents at all times, even at the buffet. I was getting a little nervous. Mother said Gidget came out and said, “I ain’t gonna let her eat all this good food by herself.” Mother laughed as she said some of the things Gidget said and did. First apparently she ate so fast, afraid I would come out soon. Mother asked her if I had put any fried squash on the plate. I had not, only because I did not have room. Gidget sad SHE does not like that stuff. She joked, “When she comes back she ain’t gonna know where her food went.” Gidget, must be a messy eater because my napkin was all nasty when I returned, and she was right. I had Mac’N’Cheese (because” it did not taste like Ms. Edith’s (my grandmother) or hers (Mothers)”, according to Gidget, I agree.), and a piece of dry chicken. Thing is my mouth was still hungry, though my belly bloated. I dared her in my mind to come out when I got my deserts. I got two just in case, I hid them behind butter beans and collards.
If you are new to this life. My advice is, take it slow, but try to become friends. I find when I am scared or afraid when they come out, it wipes me out physically. If I let them come have their peace, and not fight them, I am not nearly as exhausted when I return. I do not understand it, but that is how my body and mind works. My doctor seemed to recognize the exhaustion, so I must not be too crazy. Yeah, not too crazy, says the woman with two altar personalities.
I am not going to write as often as I did before, but I will check in every once and a while. A pulse check to let you know that I am still alive and kicking.
Thank you so much for reading. Thank you Mental Health Bloggers for the gentle reminder as to why I began blogging.
I have debated writing about this over the last couple of days, but I know that I would do myself and my readers a great injustice by not writing it. This blog serves as my journal and our voice.
As you have noticed I have not written in several days, the reason behind this is the level of my anxiety has been extremely high. It began Sunday with a blow up with a step-daughter, that ended unresolved, and remains unresolved, and will probably remain unresolved. I just need to let it go, and do the things that I have said I would do, nip it in the bud when she starts taking life out on me, ending it right there and then, not allow myself to be her emotional punching bag. I allowed this conversation go on much longer than I should have, each time she would throw her verbal artillery at me, I defended, allowing myself to release pinned up anger from the last nine years, thinking somehow that I would feel better. I do not. Though I do not feel bad about the things I said or did, I, in no way feel “vindicated” for by my words, just heavy and negative for letting go on so long.
Then Tuesday, I had a doctor’s appointment. I get very anxious to go to this doctor’s office because the waiting room is full, that and it is my internist. I knew that I had let my diabetes, my blood pressure, and cholesterol fall on the back burner. Though this doctor has the absolutely most amazing bedside manner, I still feared being scolded, no matter how gently it would be.
As I stood in front of the mirror brushing my teeth and trying to calm my nerves, Little Shanna, began to express her nervousness. I tried to reassure her, letting her know how nice the Doctor was, and that I was just nervous, but that we would be okay. Then I heard her the other voice, “You be quiet, I’ll take care of the squirt.”
I was confused and shocked. Little Shanna, this third identity, and I talked. The third, not nicely at all, she was upsetting Little Shanna and I tried to calm her. I would ask her name, she would laugh and give me a different name every time. She has given me the name Sharon, Sally, Susan…the worst was when she laughed and said Legion and continued to laugh. I tried to rebuke her in the Name of Jesus Christ, but she laughed, and she knows that she and I are part of one, and she isn’t going anywhere. When I realized I was still brushing my teeth my mouth was bleeding.
I ran to my bedroom hurried to get dressed, so that I could get out to my parents house. I was terrified. She laughed, the most awful laugh. I do not know if you remember me telling you about the experience with the smoke and fire trucks, it was that same laugh. I thought that was Little Shanna at the time. I remember even then I said, she seemed older than Little Shanna that day, now I know why. That day she told me she would exploit all my fears. She has repeated that many times the last few days.
I hurried out to my parents. Went to my Mother’s room where she was getting ready, and Daddy laying on the bed, through my tears, I told them. “There is another one.”
We went to the living room and almost immediately Little Shanna came out. She needed Mother to know she was scared. She talked to Mother more than she usually does. She kept saying she was scared. I cannot remember what else Mother said she said. In the middle of comforting Little Shanna, the other one pushed forward.
Mother said she looked very mean. Mother told her to leave but she laughed that laugh that I always hear, and said, you can’t make me leave. Mother called on the name of Jesus Christ to make her leave and she went back in, she was still tormenting me from the inside though. Daddy said he could hear the laugh all the way back in the bedroom.
My days are running together, I think it was that night that I was sitting here and I heard Little Shanna whispering to get my attention. I asked why she was whispering. She said she did not want the “mean one” to hear her. I do not know how the brain of the DID works, or if that is just the mind of the child not wanting someone else to hear her. Anyway, she said, “Killing people is bad, I didn’t want to kill you. It was the mean one.” If felt like she was implying that the “mean one” had made her say those things about killing me when she wanted me to commit suicide.
Another disturbing conversation, I think this was yesterday, but it could have been Tuesday also, was The Mean One telling me that ”I can force my way out and pretend it is you, a bitch and make your life hell and no one will know, but you cannot pretend to be me, everyone will know, sucks to be you.’” The prime example of this is Christmas with the family right before little Shanna came. Little Shanna cries like she does because she is scared of The Mean One, and upset of the situation that caused The Mean One to come.
It is so scary having something so mean, sinister, inside you. I wish I could understand DID. Living it blindly scares me. Going solely on my own experience I feel that Little Shanna only has my memories as a child. The Mean One, pretty much access to everything. I do not know how to control her.
I just don’t know, I suppose we’ll see. Thank you for reading. If you are a person of faith, I would not mind extra prayers right now. I am having a hard time dealing with this.
Went to the doctor today, when they took my oxygen stats they were low. Yay me! He has put me on a nebulizer for my asthma, one without steroids. I am so sensitive to steroids
that though they would do my lungs a world of good, my mental state and the mental state of those around me does not benefit from me on them.
Speaking of breathing in and breathing out. On the way to town, I practiced self soothing with my MP3 and circular breathing. Though I was probably better than I would have been without these techniques, I cried in anticipation of being in a crowded waiting room. My angel Mother went in to both offices for me and waited for them to call my name. She then would come and let me know so I could go to my room. I helped a lot.
This morning I before my appointments, I found something I wanted to share. I hope that it will help all of us with our anxiety. My therapist has helped me with mindfulness, when I found this, I was so excited. She was hoping to create a MP3 for me, this is so similar to the technique she uses.
Mentally busy today updating my OS on my Macbook and then trying to figure out how to get Zemanta on my blog. Oh how I have missed Zemanta.
Really the goal has been to keep my mind off of my doctors appointments tomorrow. When I go to therapy and my psychiatrist, the waiting room is generally not too crowded, but my internist and my pulminologist, oftentimes it is standing room only. So my anxiety as already started, go figure.
Wow I did not realize what time it was, it is already time for me to cook dinner for the hubs. Where is he? Hmmmm…Yeah, that is a phone call to make, wish I had not noticed the time.
The first and the last words of The Outsiders, a movie that quickly became one of my favorite a pre-teen. I do know not know what drew me into the story. It could have been the adorable and quite handsome young Patrick Swayze, C. Thomas Howell, Ralph Macchio, Rob Lowe, Matt Dillon, Emilio Estevez, and Tom Cruise. It was more than bubbling hormones though. I not only loved the movie, I loved the book.
In the eighth grade when required to do a report on the book of our choice, I chose The Outsiders. Honestly, I think I related to them somehow. Ponyboy and Johnny the tightest of friendships, even to laying to Johnny laying down his life. Each of the boys in the story carried trait I could relate to.
Not understood. Angry. Funny. Desire to be loved. Together with friends, but still outsiders.
When I presented my oral report, I began by quoting Alfred R. Ferguson’s poem that Johnny loved so well.
Nature’s first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leafs a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.
It is ironic to me now that I quoted the poem. Not really understanding what the words meant, though Johnny explained them to Pony in a letter.
The irony lies in the loss of my innocent childhood. It was gold to me. Beautiful, fun, exciting, perfect, innocent, but one event remembered has marred the golden beauty of my innocence. I do not know if my words capture the feeling and the meaning I am trying to convey and the relationship I feel to the poem. I just thought it interesting how it unknowingly personified my life.
I need to apologize for my lack of posts the last couple of days. I will sit down and start a post and something will distract me, and it is almost like “SQUIRREL” and I am mentally and/or physically gone! I am so easily distracted and completely lose the train and the track the train of thought was on. I hope to do better, but I cannot make promises. I know my brain, and it does not like to cooperate these days.
With that said, I am extremely sleepy. I think I might take a nap. I hope you have a wonderful Wednesday. Thank you for reading my blog!
P.S. This is a picture of a male red cardinal on a red bud tree outside my parents home yesterday. Isn’t he gorgeous?
I really hate days like today. My anxiety is through the roof. I have been working on my to list, each item giving me a greater measure of anxiety as I move to it. You would think that completing items would give me a sense of accomplishment, not so much right now. I am putting the completed items on my calendar, because I am pretty sure I will not remember accomplishing them.
Several items include dealing with other people over the phone. I have been okay with that, today I try to practice breathing and now listening to music to calm myself. So frustrating.
Yesterday I was looking at my Ipad and saw messages from a friend of mine. He sent me pictures of the beach that he lives near with snow on it. That was interesting. Even more perplexing, January 8th, I sent him a message, that I do not remember sending. It is a simple message, “LOL! It was 17 here with a wind chill in single digits. Crazy weather. Oh HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!‘ He then sent me a message back apparently and asked, “How are you guys doing?” I did not respond. I always respond to him. I do not know what was going on the 8th. Was I dissociated? Maybe I had a migraine and just do not remember. The 8th was his birthday, but I am pretty sure if the date had registered with me on the 8th, then I would have also remembered Grandmother’s death. That is the anniversary of her passing.
Today as I work on my lists, I want to do nothing more than climb in bed, and pull the covers up to my nose and tell the world, “You can’t see me.” I want to sleep. Sleep it all away, disappear under the covers, and hope to wake in a magical world. But lately my dreams aren’t magical, they bring nearly as much stress as being awake does. Nemesis from this world finding me in my dreams and preying on my innermost thoughts and struggles.
At the moment I am waiting for a callback from one item on my list. My attorney for my disability case. I suppose that I am anxious about that conversation, because I know that the last few times that I have talked in-depth about disability, an angry Little Shanna, and the other personality comes out. I am so tired that I do not know that I want to face that today, but any day will be the same.
My husband complains today about being sleepy. I mention to him that it is most likely because he snored and needs to replace his CPAP mask. He then said, “No I was referring to someone else staying up all night.”
I looked at him questioning. I told him that I slept all night for change, or I thought I did. He goes on to say that I kept him awake messing around on my laptop.
Why do I find this so disturbing? I went to sleep before him. I woke up to go to the bathroom and he was still awake. We joked, and I went back to sleep. I do not remember waking up until Daisy started barking at 5:00. I told her to go back to sleep and I did the same. She woke me up again at 6:00, and I went did the morning routine that my husband normally does with the dogs on the weekdays. Letting them out, feeding them, and watering them.
I then came to check my email. Looked up a few things, and wasn’t on the computer long before I was sleepy and turned it off.
I have no recollection of being on my computer during the middle of the night. I do not know who was or what they did. It really bothers me. I really do not like this.
“I pledge my commitment to the Blog for Mental Health 2014 Project. I will blog about mental health topics not only for myself, but for others. By displaying this badge, I show my pride, dedication, and acceptance for mental health. I use this to promote mental health education in the struggle to erase stigma.”
I want to introduce myself to those who are new to my blog, and re-tell my story to those that have been with me the whole journey.
So what started me blogging, and why Narnia? Narnia as you know is the place of C.S. Lewis’ creation. It is a place where children went and lived as Kings and Queens, having magical things happen. Aslan was there to protect them and guide them. You wanted to be in Narnia. For me Narnia was the woods behind my childhood home, my parents home. The home they still live in.
Last year I began blogging soon after I realized the life I thought I had lived, was not exactly the life I lived. I remembered the Narnia of my youth; however, this time it was marred by one of my playmates when he orally raped me. I was only five. He was 12 or 13.
After the event I suppressed the memory deep inside, yet there was one who always remembered. That five-year old girl.
Through this last year my life consisted of weekly therapy appointments, medication changes, many tears, so much support from family and friends, prayers, questions, and more soul-searching than one person’s brain can endure in such a short time. I have been diagnosed with PTSD and DID. I originally went for help because of my depression and anxiety and with help dealing with an adoption fraud…Then Pandora’s Box opened. You can read about that
To say that this has been an emotional roller coaster is the understatement of the past five centuries. Learning that you have a child living inside you, a child that kept such a horrible secret from you out of fear and to protect you…and your rapist. Going from fear to love, fear to love, every time you see him in public now. Trying so hard to forgive, just when you think you have forgiven him, you see him and hear her screaming. I rarely leave home now, except to go to my doctor appointments.
I think throughout the year if you name an emotion I have felt it for Shanna. That’s her name. We now have a sweet and tender relationship, almost like mother and child. I want to protect her. Show her the world. Let her know it is okay. She is so pure.
Recently in therapy we discussed the possibility of another alter because of a personality that does not seem like me, nor does it seem like Shanna. This personality seems to manifest when I am under a lot of stress and right before Shanna comes out. She is very loud, angry, fault-finding, and uncontrollable. Not like me. Shanna just cries, and talks like a child talks if at all. Sometimes I co-exist with both personalities but oftentimes they push me so far back that others have to tell me what happened. I do not know if there is another alter, if this is another alter, they have not told me their name. Nor shared it with anyone. However, some very strange things have happened that cannot be explained, that makes me seriously wonder. I do not know, I am just very grateful that Shanna and I are friends now, and that we trust each other. Things were so bad with her for a while.
I am new to this whole world of DID. Anyone with any help or advise would be appreciated. I am new to PTSD also, but at least with it, some of my past actions and reactions are explained, and as irrational as the PTSD mind can get you still see the how and the why and understand. With DID, you feel crazy, I can’t speak for others, but I do, because I do not understand it.
What are my goals? I am working to become a well and whole person. I have come to realize it is a long and difficult journey, not for the weak. I began blogging to help myself, but also to help others in the same or similar situations. I invite you to come along with me on my journey to wholeness. Some days you will laugh. Others you might cry. Some days I will not blog about my mental health at all, normal days are wonderful gifts, and I cherish them. Together we will reclaim my Narnia and yours.
I look forward to meeting you and sharing this journey. I always welcome comments and discussion. Please know that even if you do not have mental health issues or someone with mental health issues, still come on along, the more the merrier!
Something new that I have done with my blog is opened two new pages.
Q & A: Ask me anything. I will try to answer. I will not give details of my rape.
Guest Bloggers: I love reading blogs, looking at pictures, poetry, etc. Would you like to be a guest blogger. Jump over to my guest blogger page.
We are an army against the negative stigma that we face, but we are also fighting our own individual battles.