Sunday, July 31, 2011

Define Healing

A few days ago, I added a new post. For me, it was an act of healing. It was a matter of: Okay. I'm not ashamed. I'm not going to hide. I am going to let it go. For me, if I don't talk about things (or if I turn down time with friends), I am crawling into myself, I am retreating..... although, because I'm not the best at articulating myself in person, sometimes writing, for me, is like talking. When I write, it allows me to process information, to acknowledge it, and to move forward. And when I wrote that post, and then published it for others to see, it was like blowing a wisher into the wind. I let it go... well, letting go is a process, but I got closer, and I felt so good and free and at peace.

A couple days later, someone expressed concern for me. She said that she sees that I am having a hard time coping. I tried to explain my viewpoint, but she only sees it through her own lens. She knows how she feels. She knows how she acts and interacts. She assumes I'm the same; she assumes that by writing it, I am clinging on.
But for me, when I don't write, the thoughts spin in my head repetitively. Writing does help me let go. But I can't convince her of this.

So she's trying to convince me that I need to get rid of everything written, that relates to my dad- his journals, documents, everything- just destroy it. And I am fine with getting rid of most of it. But a few pages of it actually acknowledges what he did- and coming from a past in which people didn't believe me, I like knowing that proof exists, so I don't want to destroy that part of it. It may be that when I put it in a box, I forget about it for 10 years, then see it again and think, "Nope, I don't need it anymore." But today, I want it- not to look at regularly, but to just have. And I do believe that letting-go can't be pushed. It comes with time; with growing- and I am growing, and am not concerned if it takes a little while. So why do I have to be pushed?

So then, I was telling a good friend about this. I actually had a point I was trying to get at- but never got there because she started telling me how she agrees with the first person. And in her argument, she completely downplayed the past- said, "well, he never actually succeeded in doing those things to you." I know that! I know it could have been 10 million times worse. But he still did hurt me.... and her comment hurt a lot, because she's my friend..... Then she wanted me to set a date for "letting go"/getting rid of certain things- well, if I knew I needed to let go of those things, I'd do it today. But these items seem like the side-act to moving on; they aren't the issue.... And some would say I should also take all the photos of my dad out of the albums. To me, it is a fact that he's a part of my past. I can't take him out of my past, so taking him out of the albums just leaves a void- which is just as obvious, and more evasive.

For me, the question is, what's going on within me, when I acknowledge the past? Can I say, yes, my dad abused me, but I am free now? I think that's the truer form of moving on in life. Yes, I think back to the past. I think of family vacations, of girl scout activities, of camp, of the time I flew off my bike, of the time dad tried this or that, and so-on. I remember them, and depending on the situation, I may mention them.... and if people around me are making it a current issue, I may mention the past more, because it relates to the present- but that doesn't mean I'm stuck in a rut. I also talk about the future- of career, and marriage, and possibly children- and tomorrow and next month- much more than I talk about him.... unless someone else starts the conversation (and yes, when he makes some new jerky comment, or if people bring him up- or anything meaningful, good or bad- my thoughts tend to be partly on it for hours.... so when Mom says she received another jerky letter, and tells me about it, I think about his being a jerk through the next day, and may mention something about him to my closest friends. But usually, it's a comment-in-passing when I do).

Thing is, I'm not claiming to be "healed." I am "healing." I am growing and feeling good and alive and new.... and I don't want the people I care about to be blind to that. But these two people are telling me they're certain that I'm holding on- and somehow, that makes me feel trapped. So now I'm trapped, disagreeing, and not allowed to dwell on fun things because every day, someone is bringing up their concerns for me.... and now I feel like I can't talk it out with friends without the risk of being accused of not letting go, but I can't let go, without talking it out enough to know what I'm letting go of.

Some days are so extremely frustrating.

1 comment:

  1. My opinion is that you don't have to get rid of anything if you don't want to unless it creates a stranglehold or obsession in your life. I don't think that is the case here.

    I think the other 2 people are telling you what may have helped them, but the same methods don't always apply to different situations or people.

    Keep writing / talking about your past, present and future as much as you want. Your true friends won't try to censor you --- they will just listen.


I love comments. It makes me feel like I'm not just talking to a wall, and rids me of the feeling that this time, I said too much, or said something the wrong way.

(I review your comments first, so if you want to say something just to me, just let me know).

I love comments. It makes me feel like I'm not just talking to a wall, and rids me of the feeling that this time, I said too much, or said something the wrong way.

(I review your comments first, so if you want to say something just to me, just let me know).