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Tuesday, September 16, 2014.  I used to have a lot of tolerance for the truthful stuff about what early abuse and neglect does to change the physiological development of infants and children.  There are thousands and thousands of background pages on this blog about this kind of Trauma Altered Development processes.  Yet during the years I spent post 2004 studying neuroscientific development along these lines not one of the experts’ writings I pored through ever had the emotional impact on me that Dr. Bruce Perry’s does.  (see previous post)

There are dry scientific facts.  Then there are damp, moist, earthy facts that belong to the body itself.  To its emotions.  To its storehouses of memories.  To its blood and to its tears.  These kinds of facts, the kind that Perry works with and writes about, lie at the heart of matters of infant and child neglect and abuse and cannot be denied although they can be ignored.

Yet Perry himself did not live through the levels of life-changing early traumas he writes about.  I did.  Truth is, I hate that fact.  I hate harm to defenseless little ones.  Does hate ever heal?

My guess?  No, not by itself.  I have previously written about denial as a kind of immature childish magical thinking that allows humans to bypass the truth of circumstances they are not ready to face.  And certainly not ready to change.  Not ready to accept response-ability for.  “Somebody else’s problem.  Too messy for me.”  These patterns allow the taboos cultures hold about harming little ones to find their way into higher-level taboos against KNOWING the truths that tear apart the heart once they find their way — home.

Some things are too painful to contemplate.  So culturally we maintain taboos against accepting upon ourselves what adults need to care about because little ones are totally powerless to change what needs to be changed.  By vastly ignoring the truth about terrible harms done to the youngest among us we are showing our ignorance by ignoring what we don’t want to face.

I am finding that process operating within myself as I struggle to read Perry’s words.  The difference for me and for many of this blog’s readers is that I/we already know about this subject from the inside out.  Perry’s words hot-wire my reality between traumatic past and current “better” present.  Any hope of a buffer against the pain of abuse and neglect evaporates.

That kind of pain little ones being harmed feel is too big for them.  That kind of trauma is supposed to be healed by a whole society that HATES harm to young ones and stops it.  We don’t live in that kind of world.

Not yet.

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Here is our first book out in ebook format.  Click here to view or purchase –

STORY WITHOUT WORDS

It lists for $2.99 and can be read by Amazon Prime customers without charge.  Reviews for the book on the Amazon.com site are welcome.

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Leave a Comment

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+THE LIFE LOST

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Tuesday, September 16, 2014.  I am trying yet again to read The Boy Who Was Raised as a Dog: And Other Stories from a Child Psychiatrist’s Notebook–What Traumatized Children Can Teach Us About Loss, Love, and Healing (2007)by Bruce Perry and Maia Szalavitz.  I again fell into the depths of my sadness while reading page 25 just as I did when I stopped reading Perry’s book in 2007.  My slide again began while reading forward from page 22.  Why am I trying again?

Dr. Perry will be speaking here in Fargo, North Dakota in a little over two weeks.  My daughter will be there to hear him.  I have continued to think that the one person I would want to read our book, Story Without Words, and to write a “blurb” for it would be Perry.

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I am grieving for my life.  Obviously not for the one I have as a survivor of 18 years of severe (psychotic) abuse from the moment I was born.  I grieve for my OTHER life.  The one I was robbed of.  I also grieve for my mother.  For her suffering.  For the life she lived and for the life she lost.

I cannot read Perry’s work without being swallowed by this grief.

How productive is THAT?

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Or, how tolerable?

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I don’t think there is an early neglect and abuse survivor reading this post who will not resonate with what Perry writes beginning on page 22.  (If that link becomes inactive Google search for “perry boy who was raised as a dog they would unravel and forget” and begin reading on that page by clicking on the first link the search provides.)

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I asked my published brother who is also a highly successful used bookstore owner about how to approach Perry for a book “blurb.”  He immediately responded with his humorous suggestions which included the following example:

Dear Mr. _______

I have followed with great interest your research on delectable shrimp recipes for wild-caught Alaska prawns. Your book 101 Ways to Boil Shrimp has been an inspiration to me in my own work on the subject of making healthy, tasty meals for my family. I was privileged to hear you speak last year at the National Crustacean Symposium, and your responses to audience questions at the Q&A that followed your presentation highlighted your unique and innovative approach to the field of seafood preparation.

I am a former vegetarian and recovering vegan, whose journey to preparing shrimp has carried me through many years of cooking classes, cookbook study, and first-hand research upon the oceans of the Pacific Northwest. I have written a book (complete in manuscript form) that I feel addresses a need among home chefs who are struggling with their own feelings of prawn apprehension. Life Lived Backwards: My Journey Across the Ocean Floor tells the story of my own travels through the culinary world of scallops, crabs, oysters, shrimp, and other delectable members of the crustacean nation that your own work has made so accessible. It would be an honor for me if you would consent to previewing a copy of my book and, if you like it, contribute a few short words that I could use on the cover of the book, and on my web site and other promotional venues marketing this important work.

May I sent you a copy of Life Lived Backwards?

Please contact me via email at ____ or by phone at ____ with your postal address, and I will send a copy out promptly to your attention. Thank you in advance for your kindness, and thanks again for your outstanding work in this field!

    Yours Sincerely,

 

    Wanda B. Anauthor

Me again. I haven’t tried it, but I bet with some creative Googling you can find lots of tips about this from online writing/author/publishing web sites that will further describe approaches you might consider.

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I thanked my brother and decided that in order for me to write anything like a genuine request letter to Perry I better read the two books of his I have here.  My plan has gone as far astray as my OWN REAL life has gone due to the severe trauma and its changes to my physiology that I experience.  I am “land locked” in my frozen Silence.

This grief has no words.

Obviously.

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I am trying.  I have now read to page 37.  Will I be able to finish Perry’s book?  Time will tell….

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I am thinking about being this blunt with a subtitle for this book – Did Child Abuse Break My Mother?

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Here is our first book out in ebook format.  Click here to view or purchase –

STORY WITHOUT WORDS

It lists for $2.99 and can be read by Amazon Prime customers without charge.  Reviews for the book on the Amazon.com site are welcome.

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+2-D PARENTS

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Friday, September 12, 2014.  Sent to me by a dear friend this morning (hope this posts OK) —–

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“BTW, Psychotherapy Networker’s email to me today included a VERY interesting article:
I’m excited about it because is shows that the writer (Ron Taffel, whom I’ve seen in some of PN’s previous webinars) has realized that something is really screwed-up with our culture, attachment-wise. Nice to know that Gordon Neufeld is getting some company and isn’t going to remain virtually the only voice in the wilderness crying out about this!”

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Take a look.  Print FREE!  Dr. Daniel Siegel’s rebuttal to “Attachment theory is dead.”

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Here is our first book out in ebook format.  Click here to view or purchase –

STORY WITHOUT WORDS

It lists for $2.99 and can be read by Amazon Prime customers without charge.  Reviews for the book on the Amazon.com site are welcome.

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Leave a Comment

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Tuesday, September 9, 2014.  Today is Day 4 of a collection of thoughts as I will post them here in the order they were handwritten:

DAY ONE

I think a lot about depression, both my own and that of those around me who are “medicating” theirs.  I know mine has been a part of me since I was a very young child.  The only way I could survive the trauma of Mother’s continual abuse was to do nothing else but — survive it.  Now I know she was psychotically mentally ill.  This made her insanely unpredictable and insanely violent and dangerous to me.

From birth any response I could have had to utilize the energy of any “fight” reaction to her was forced into inactivity or else she would have killed me.  Of that fact I have no doubt.  I was alone in a hopeless, horrible situation — helpless in my own defense — for the first 18 years of my life from birth.

My depression has always been directly due to the situation of trauma that built itself into my developing physiology.

Yesterday the term “situational depression” appeared in my thoughts as if it were a massive tree planted in the center of my reality.  My response was, “Yes.  That’s what this is that I live and breath nearly all of the time.”

Most of my current “situation” amplifies the depression I already lived with before I left Arizona to move back to Fargo, North Dakota last October.  Poverty.  Tiny cramped apartment with completely inadequate windows and light.  City which has never been good for me.  Noise.  Light pollution.  Lack of privacy and of natural beauty.  Not to mention the horrible long winters and the cumulative, disabling consequences of the severe early trauma.  None of these things HELP me feel better about anything.

DAY TWO

One can only step forward into each day making choices care-full-ly with good intent and then try one’s best to carry through.

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I also think a lot about anxiety.  (Depression itself is an anxiety disorder.)  One can certainly be born with a body that contains more than enough anxiety within it, even so much so that the best safe and secure, loving attachment from birth cannot create a calm, tranquil, peaceful reality for such a young one.  Attachments cannot, then, necessarily provide the safety necessary for the entire progression of “best possible” emotional regulation or social interplay to develop in such a child.

I am just now learning this.  Such a child would end up with all of the “symptoms” of an insecure attachment disorder because the body can never bypass that super-built-in anxiety.  Nor could the best attachment ever alleviate the anxiety.  Attachment systems would essentially fail as surely as if there was trauma in early relationships themselves.  This “trauma in the body” would leave such a little one perpetually living in a dangerous world because the anxiety “says” this is so.  There would never be any safety or security.

What then?

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Patterns in the nervous system and in the stress response system:  Underactivation.  Overactivation.  Meet in the middle?  Where is the true peaceful calm?  Without this, where is there ever an opportunity for true playfulness?

DAY THREE

Failed attachment is failed attachment, no matter the source or cause.  There is too much we don’t currently know about causes and consequences of alterations in how our attachment systems and all their related physiology form and operate.

I would simply say that all experiences in our environment forward from conception are forming the physiological selfhood of everyone prior to the conscious autobiographical remembering self’s appearance.  By the time we can consciously trace our self in our life the physiology that does this experiencing and its remembrance has been created.

At the same time it is critical to realize that every change from what is an optimal safe and secure attachment of the growing self impacts all development as an ongoing process.  We do not escape the forces that form us even though the most important ones are owned in and by our body out of range from consciousness UNTIL WE LEARN as much as we possibly can about those forces as they probably existed for us from the earliest moments of our life.  It may then be possible to mitigate some of the attachment failure physiological influences as they profoundly complicate our lives.

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The kicker, I suppose, is how we respond to stressors.  That includes how we detect them in the first place.  Life is about change.  Change ques systems in our body to attend and assess.  How much of what kind of attention is in our response?  I suspect this information passes for most of us as emotional reaction.

What do we notice and how?  What then happens to any equilibrium we may have achieved before a detected change occurred?

Then what?

As I age as a long-term early severe trauma survivor my thinking becomes simpler.  Serious insecure attachment repercussions for me are so intimately connected in my physiology to PTSD I have begun to wonder if there is any earthly part of me that is ever NOT under the seemingly identical discomfort of a reaction from both of them to all change I experience.  I therefore have to be very, very careful of what influences me.

My life simply is this continual battle to try to find some kind of equilibrium as I live in a world of constant change.  Very little in my physiology except for basic operations ever finds rest.  True rest is about safety in the world.  I never had enough of that as my body formed to even really know what it is.

I have a trauma formed body.  My self does not have any other body to experience life with.

I live with chronic, continual anxiety.  It interferes with every aspect of my life.

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A chronically “ON” attachment system operates in a kind of infinity loop with a chronically “ON” stress response system.  Some combination of survival emotions of anger>fear>sadness are nearly always in motion.  There is so little rest.  Little peace.  Little playfulness.  Little true joy.

We are enslaved to our body as it has been created, changed through severe early trauma, as it knows one thing and one thing only:  DANGER threatens SURVIVAL.

Continual application of the powers of the mind in attempt to counteract this “mess” are TIRING!  Always the other signals compete for our attention.  And always some version of survival emotions and their demands upon us are present.

This all combines to make our being alive — WORK!!

DAY FOUR

What keeps a seed alive?  They don’t LOOK alive.  Take any dried bean you can buy from a bin or in a bag.  There it is.

Pass the bean down through the generations.  Five hundred years from now if the bean has been stored properly it could be planted and up will rise another crop, same as the last.

I don’t know scientifically what the secret is inside a seed.  Inside something as simple as a plain old bean.  But whatever lies encased in mystery and miracle must be inside of me.  No claim to fame.  Humble of origin.  Yet here I am.  And I am viable.

Every day I have to remember this.  No matter what storms of feeling or thought swirl and tumble me along through life I hold within me something intangible.  Some kind of hope.  Some kind of miracle.

And it keeps me going because I trust that.  I AM that.  I am so much more than what I appear to myself or to others.  I am a part of something so much bigger.

To ask why any of this matters is to ask why I matter. I guess right here is where, for me, the line of faith lies.  It’s where I have no answers.  My faith is that there ARE answers.  Gone ones, too.  Ones that would make perfect sense to me if I knew them.

And then my faith — which must be very elastic — stretches further as I stand across from myself and say, “Just be patient.  More will be revealed.  If not in this lifetime then in the next one.  Hang on.”

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There are those of us who have lived through hell and beyond it.  Even with what Dr. Martin Teicher says — formed in a malevolent world for life in the same — we DID find our way into a more benevolent world.

And yes, we are a mismatch as Teicher states, for this “other” world.

But what world, I ask, is a seed’s best world?  Once it sprouts — where is its “seed self?”

Dead and gone?  Or transformed?

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This article contains the most important information that survivors especially of INFANT-TODDLER maltreatment need to know:

The neurobiological consequences of early stress and childhood maltreatment.

Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews 27 (2003) 33-44

Martin H. Teicher, Susan L. Andersen, Ann Polcari, Carl M. Anderson, Carryl P. Navalta, Dennis M. Kim

“In our hypothesis, postnatal neglect or other maltreatment serves to elicit a cascade of stress responses that organizes the brain to develop along a specific pathway selected to facilitate reproductive success and survival in a world of deprivation and strife.  This pathway, however, is costly as it is associated with an increased risk of developing serious medical and psychiatric disorders and is unnecessary and maladaptive in a more benign environment.  [page 39 – found by clicking on article title above]

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Here is our first book out in ebook format.  Click here to view or purchase –

STORY WITHOUT WORDS

It lists for $2.99 and can be read by Amazon Prime customers without charge.  Reviews for the book on the Amazon.com site are welcome.

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Leave a Comment »

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+TODAY I AM 63

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Sunday, August 31, 2014.  Today is my 63rd birthday.  Shaped and molded.  I am still here upon this glorious earth.  Of what do I speak?  So few moments in my lifetime have I felt content with myself.  I am a true, true Virgo.

My dear friend left me a birthday gift last week before she left on a week’s tour of Sweden.  In the package I just found a kit to make and remake a kaleidoscope!  Many different kinds of colorful small bits and pieces that put together and within a container will allow me to see infinite collections of beauty.

Forty-three years after our first meeting – and I feel so perfectly known and loved by her.  Thank you!

Later today I will show my 4-year-old grandson my gift and we will make our arrangements together.

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I ponder these words today:  “‘Does not the child succumb in the youth and the youth in the man; yet neither child nor youth perishes?’”

What do any of us really know about who we are?  What do I know about who I am?  It feels like I KNOW nothing.  I am woven together of questions.

Yet I am most grateful in my life that I seem to have been born with a spiritual awareness that does not leave me.

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I have viewed all I can see so far of my life.  Backward in time.  I never see my own future.  Not a glimpse.  Not even an imagination of it.  It seems that because I have been alive this long I might be able to more clearly see my own patterns of reactions and choices so that I could begin to place myself within the context of my own life.

As I reach within for my own words I only find myself becoming quieter and quieter inside.

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Here is our first book out in ebook format.  Click here to view or purchase –

STORY WITHOUT WORDS

It lists for $2.99 and can be read by Amazon Prime customers without charge.  Reviews for the book on the Amazon.com site are welcome.

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Leave a Comment »

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Friday, August 29, 2014.  All-in-all I can simply say that as a result of having to develop in every way, on every level, during 18 long years of terrible abuse from birth that I have been left knowing what I should not REALLY know in a way that I should NOT know it.

Cryptic?  Absolutely so.  Impossible?  No.  Absolutely not, although the extent of trauma it took for me to be formed “this way” was so extraordinaire and so rare as to leave in its wake a way of being in the world that nearly defies description.  Perhaps this is why my blog has remained so silent for so many days after so many days as that time stretches very soon into a year.

Again and yet again I refer readers to the profound neuroscientific facts about what severe early attachment relationship trauma is likely to do to the physiological development of its littlest sufferers as they are recorded clearly in Dr. Martin Teicher’s 2003 article, The neurobiological consequences of early stress and childhood maltreatment.

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I am inundated with and surrounded by increasingly clear awarenesses about what severe early trauma from birth did to my development of self as I exist in this world – a world of TIME passing.  I cannot say I know anything about Buddhism.  I know that I take great comfort knowing that the 14th Dalai Lama is still on our planet.

I am reminded of my mention of him nearly five years ago on the pages of this blog –

+LIGHT T-DAY READING ON RATS AND THE DALAI LAMA

A few related past posts –

+SOME OF MY THOUGHTS ABOUT ‘ATTACHMENT’

 

+ANTIDOTE TO DISSOCIATION: THE TRANSITION TO WHOLENESS

 

+A COLLECTION OF POSTS RELATED TO — CALM — AND ABUSE RELATED COMPLICATIONS

 

+CAN EARLY INFANT-CHILD MALTREATMENT TURN OFF THE COMPASSION SWITCH?

+A CRITICAL FACT I JUST LEARNED ABOUT MY ABUSIVE BORDERLINE MOTHER

 

+CALM THE CRYING BABY — IMMUNE SYSTEM STIMULATES VAGUS NERVE TRAUMA ALTERED DEVELOPMENT

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Within the posts lie facts conveyed by developmental neuroscientists to the Dalai Lama about how babies born to an anxious mother rat will all come out anxious if she raises them.  Babies born to a calm mother rat will all come out to be calm if the calm mother raises them.

However, if babies born to these two kinds of mothers are switched at birth all of the babies born to a calm mother and raised by an anxious one will become anxious.  All babies born to an anxious mother but raised by a calm one will come out calm.

Implications for those of us within the Kingdom of Humanity?  You know it….

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Someone at one of these neuroscientific “learning events” hosted by the Dalai Lama asked him if people severely abused when young had the same opportunity to reach “enlightenment” as those who had not been abused do.  The Dalai Lama was evidently silent for a long time before he responded with – “No.  They do not.”

Again.  Implications?  I have my 63rd birthday in two days.  The longer I live in this body on this earth the clearer I become about not only what the implications are for us as survivors, but more importantly I learn every moment about the difficulties born from the traumatic changes Teicher’s article begins to outline for us.

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TIME

I have written many posts on this blog about how trauma alters the sense of the passage of time (search this blog by putting ‘peritraumatic’ in the search bar and more posts will appear) –

+DISSOCIATION AND THE PERITRAUMATIC PASSAGE OF TIME

+INFANT-CHILD ABUSE, ACUTE TRAUMA = PERITRAUMATIC ALTERED SENSE OF THE PASSAGE OF TIME

+FIGHTING BACK AGAINST THE ABUSE SURVIVOR’S ALTERED PERITRAUMATIC SENSE OF TIME

 

+FASCINATING NOTES ON LIVING WITH TRAUMA

 

Past posts beginning late summer 2013 and onward through last fall and winter as they can be found along the right side of this blog tell the background story about why I am up here in Fargo, North Dakota facing the onset of another horrible windchill winter rather than being on the Mexican-American border of the high desert in Arizona that I love.

I will tell you a little story about how the efforts I am making to care for my youngest grandson who just turned two are successful.  Three days ago as I sat on a chair talking to one of my sisters on the telephone Baby (as he calls himself – and who is just beginning to talk) came to stand directly in front of me.

He was smiling as he tapped the center of his chest lightly, telling me “Here it is!  Right there.”  And then he walked away.  (It wasn’t until the next day that he first used “I” and “me.”)

I never before that moment heard him use those words, “right there.”  WHO is RIGHT THERE!  BINGO!  Right in the center of his little body-being is his spirit-soul-self – with joy and awareness!

I never had a chance to reach that point!  I don’t think many severe early trauma survivors did, either.  This is a critical juncture in human development, and a necessary required one for well-being to exist in the body and between the body and self.  Missing this development leaves us truly LOST in some way for the rest of our lives.

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And what about time?  There is a critical body-brain developmental stage through which we gain what is termed “autobiographical memory.”  Without a sense of self that is true and real how can we process memory, which is our record of our own experience of passing through the time of our life, in any ordinary way?

I don’t believe that we can.  Nobody tells us this.

If you do a simple online search for the terms “Buddha fingers circle” you will find images I am going to refer to next.  I recently read the following in a book about a woman’s travels in Japan around 1930 as it relates to these images and the “lore” behind them:

On another solitary jaunt, she visited the Great Buddha – “a bronze figure over forty feet high measuring some thirty-five feet across….  Surely the serenity and peace of this figure are worthy to rank with the enkindled majesty of the maimed and broken face of the Sphinx which so impressed me with its heroic spiritual ardor.  The hands of the Great Buddha are turned upward in the lap, the thumbs and forefingers forming two circles and touching.  In Buddhist lore this represents ‘firm faith,’ but it also signifies life as the moment between two eternities, each moment being the only contact between all that is past and all that is to come.” (p. 138 of book at above link)

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Early safe and secure attachment relationships an infant has with its caregivers form the basis of building “attachment transitions” between self and the world (after they begin to form the sense of self in the first place!).

I was given nothing but terror and trauma WITHOUT being given any relationships of safety and security.  I did not form into my body-nervous system-brain the required circuitry to process TIME as I live through it in anything but a dissociative way.  What am I learning about what this means, how it operates and most importantly what it FEELS like to me to have been robbed of building a sense of self in passing time with attachment to others and to the world around me?

I do not REMEMBER on an ongoing basis what the past actually felt like to me.  I cannot carry “warm and fuzzy” feeling awarenesses forward into and through my present moments, nor can I IMAGINE any future moments with that safe and secure information contained within them.

This is being alone.  Perpetually alone.  And the sadness never leaves me.  It accompanies me perpetually.

That instant of the present moment between the infinities of the past and future is ALL THAT I HAVE!  Yes, I can intellectually think about all these time-based, reality-based conditions in a rational way.  But these thoughts are entirely separate from my body-based sense of myself in the world.

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The point, as I think of it, of reaching “enlightenment” is that a person CHOOSES a pathway that takes them there.  As the Dalai Lama answered that question “No,” the reality of altered physiological development on so many critical levels was being referred to.  Without ever having been given what it takes to build a self to later relinquish denies a possibility of taking the step in the present moment into a consciously chosen state of relinquishment.

One cannot give up what one has never had.

Safe and secure attachment prevents so-called “dissociation” from becoming the predominant pattern of time-processing and therefore of memory-building.  Without safe and secure early attachment experiences there is no clearly-delineated “past” as separated by the present moment from “future.”

What I am beginning to so clearly detect in my own experience is that what was supposedly my “past” never leaves just as the “future” never arrives.  There is nothing BUT the present moment.  I cannot carry any knowledge of love from others along with me throughout my life journey.  I was formed terribly alone in terrible danger.  That was what built me as it built itself into me.

I struggle always to be consciously articulated about love and goodness in my present moments.  However, my ongoing need to be grounded in a “larger body” of physical location that provides me stability, grounding, sanctuary and what feels to me to be beauty is always “dragging with gravity” at my physical self-awareness.

Developmental experts speak of the “unsolvable paradox” abused infants and young children are faced with, as it exists on at least two distinct levels of (a) how to stay alive when to do so is impossible (how to “go on being” when to “go on being” is impossible), which is deeply connected to (b) how to avoid approaching a deadly caregiver upon whom our very life depends.

Living with this paradox has never left me.  It is built into me.  It built me.  It has expanded itself into something more complex, really, because now as an adult I know “this is not right.”  I had to be greatly harmed and in great danger and in great isolation for this paradox to have grown so immense.  Simply put – and in regard to my being alive in a body passing through time – the paradox has become this:

I cannot LIVE in two “places” at the same time.  I cannot carry my past with solid understanding of my safe and secure connection to others through my present moment, knowing I will “have” these safe and secure connections In the future.  It is impossible for me to be “there” and “here” at the same time.

I remember very clearly what my reality felt like growing up into my teens right up to the moment I left home.  I have often described my state-of-being in terms of my being a detached camera that merely recorded every split second of what happened within my awareness in each present moment.  ALL I HAVE EVER HAD IS THE PRESENT MOMENT.

In the chaotic, unstable, unpredictable, brutal, dangerous PSYCHOTIC world of Mother’s that I could not escape from ALL I COULD EVER DO WAS ENDURE AND SURVIVE.  And THAT – the living of the paradox of staying alive when doing so is impossible – happens in the peritraumatic present moment of time passing.

Living the paradox has expanded for me into trying to, wanting to, be able to experience connection with others in the present moments of my life (and to remember these connections, and to carry the knowledge of their existence through the present into the future) even though I physiologically do not have the capacity to DO THIS.

I doubt that most of those who advocate what might be termed “mindful” living can begin to imagine what it is like not to have any other choice but to exist within a state such as I am describing.  I therefore – yet again – believe that there will be survivors reading this post who know exactly what I am trying to describe (given the failure of words to do so).

We are here.  We have nowhere else to be.  Our life has always been this way.

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Here is our first book out in ebook format.  Click here to view or purchase –

STORY WITHOUT WORDS

It lists for $2.99 and can be read by Amazon Prime customers without charge.  Reviews for the book on the Amazon.com site are welcome.

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Leave a Comment »

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+SHOULD?

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Sunday, August 17, 2014.  My calm-stress response system is so finely tuned at this point in my life (63) that I do not wish to tolerate ANYTHING that includes even the tiniest hint of anxiety stimulation.  How sensitive am I?

Well, I am recommending the reading of someone’s post today and as I introduce this topic I will NOT do so by including any hint of “anticipation” about its main point.  Anticipation contains some degree of anxiety.  I will tell you right up front – which is the way I like life to be.  Never mind life actually feels to me to be of the highest complexity!

This post by neuroscientist Dr. Mark Brady, The Most Brain-Damaging Word in the English Language, is ABOUT the word and concept of “SHOULD.”

Now you know!

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This word brought a memory to mind from 1974.  I had just turned 23 and OH!  What a troubled life I had already lived up until that point!  I went to talk with another therapist for the second time in a year’s period.  I wanted to especially talk about the difficulty I was experiencing not being able to begin a day of my life without a “shot of pot.”  I know now I was self medicating deep depression for the “unmentioned and  unmentionable” horrendous traumatic abuse I had lived through in the first 18 years of my life.

But, no.  Like the first therapist I had seen did NOT do for me, I received nothing useful from this honest and desperate attempt of mine to “get help.”  This second therapist just launched into some bizarre lecture based on his PERSONAL belief:  “There’s no should about it.  Drop the should.  If you want to smoke pot, smoke it.  If you don’t want to, don’t.”

Oh, geeze!  That first therapist, btw, attacked me with her first question the day of my first appointment out in the LOBBY of the clinic as she preceded me toward the hallway to her office:  “What was going on in your life when you were pregnant with your daughter?”  She evidently had at least bothered to read the initial statement of concerns I had made when I made this appointment several weeks earlier about my difficulties as a single mother.  (I was nearly a full decade away from even beginning to KNOW I had ever been abused, and certainly NO therapist I ever consulted gave me what I truly needed to heal from any part of that abuse.)

My response to her and to her question?  I stopped dead in my tracks.  She noticed and stopped dead in hers.  She turned toward me as my thoughts raced backward through the dark, troubled corridors of the difficult complexities of my young life (I was 22 at this point).

I looked her straight in the eyes and responded with all the power in me (though I didn’t know what my power even was at that time):  “You don’t want to know.  You don’t EVEN want to know.”

And I walked out.

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Here is our first book out in ebook format.  Click here to view or purchase –

STORY WITHOUT WORDS

It lists for $2.99 and can be read by Amazon Prime customers without charge.  Reviews for the book on the Amazon.com site are welcome.

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Leave a Comment »

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Monday, August 11, 2014.  There are many comments and replies accumulating in response to my April 11, 2012 post,

+ADULT REACTIVE ATTACHMENT DISORDER – THE GREAT UMBRELLA!

The most recent comments made on August 6, 2014 frankly — break my heart.  My first suggestion is that either copy of this book be immediately purchased and read –

Parenting From the Inside Out by Daniel J. Siegel MD and Mary Hartzell (Apr 22, 2004)

Parenting from the Inside Out 10th Anniversary edition: How a Deeper Self-Understanding Can Help You Raise Children… by Daniel J. Siegel MD and Mary Hartzell (Dec 26, 2013)

++

Dr. Siegel gives an excellent presentation of what attachment is, how we form our attachment patterns, what creates secure and insecure attachments, and how we can recognize these patterns operating in our own and in others’ lives.  Without this basic knowledge we cannot begin to think rationally about what patterns found in Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) might mean.

If someone wants to understand more about the harm terrible mothering does to a person for their lifetime please search Google for the terms “stop the storm trauma altered development” and go to work studying what can be found at the links that appear.  The few blog pages that appear with the search are just a small beginning of what this blog contains on the subject.

There is a search bar on this blog  – You can also type in “attachment” and a universe of information will appear here.

++

There is no simple or magic solution to what is happening in the lives of the family members as mentioned in the August 6th comments I noted above.  Because there is a child in the family it is imperative that the chaos and disorder in the family be addressed ASAP — not for the comfort of the adults in the home but for the necessary healing of this child.  Nothing, in my (layperson) mind tops the needs of this child.

I understand the RAD sufferer’s reaction to the “forgive” subject (please read the comment).  Again with “forgiveness” typed into this blog’s search bar a host of relevant posts will appear.  The kind of trauma and abuse I suspect is the history of this sufferer is something I can understand from my own history.

As I have mentioned on this blog, my abusive mother — who was actually psychotically, severely mentally ill — would have deserved a minimum prison term for what she did to me of no less than 15,000 years in my estimation.  We survivors of these kinds of hellacious infancies and childhoods are basically “in another kind of world.”  We need to honor that fact, and we need to learn what that means.

It is imperative that anyone considering these topics read the article posted here -

+Dr. Teicher’s ARTICLE ON TRAUMA ALTERED DEVELOPMENT

We won’t understand all of the technical terms in it, but the essence of what this article says is crucially clear — especially by the final paragraph.

++

Learning the facts about Trauma Altered Development as it happens through unsafe, insecure and DANGEROUS traumatic early attachment relationships is essential to moving forward!!  The light will go on for us as we study this kind of information.  We need to learn about OUR world – and it is never too late to do this work.  Please — do!

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Here is our first book out in ebook format.  Click here to view or purchase –

STORY WITHOUT WORDS

It lists for $2.99 and can be read by Amazon Prime customers without charge.  Reviews for the book on the Amazon.com site are welcome.

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Leave a Comment »

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Sunday, July 27, 2014.  I write so seldom any more.  I miss it.  I have no idea what I am going to say here today.  I decided that fact is exactly why I need to write SOMETHING.

There is no judge here.  No jury.  No executioner?  Wow.  I did not see THAT word coming!  Yes, my insane, psychotic abusive mother WOULD have been my executioner if she could have done so not once but many, many times.  That was her insanity.  There was no end to how much she needed to abuse me.  That meant that she could not kill me.  She needed me.

But I survived in spite of both her madness and her violence.  Somehow I kept getting up.  I kept going on.  As the experts say about abused infants.  They live the unsolvable paradox of how to keep on being when doing so is impossible.

We survive.  We endure.

Frankly.  I feel tired.  How tired am I?  Actually?  I don’t know.  How I feel and how I am may well not exactly BE the same thing.  I have kept on going many, many times in my life when I was too tired to do so.  When things seemed too hard.

That is what survivors do.

I don’t want to complain.  I don’t MEAN to complain.  I ask myself, “Is that what I am doing?”  I don’t even know the answer to that question let alone the answers to the thousands of questions I ask myself.

Yet some part of me senses that I am REALLY not THAT much “in trouble.”  Trouble will be when my questions stop.  That’s my bet.

++

Right now I am feeling a softness to life that doesn’t come to me very often.  The feeling is a tender one.  It is tied to a certain knowledge that all humans at some time or another get up and keep on going when doing so is, really, all but impossible.

That’s what we humans do.

That’s why we are still here.

That’s why we are likely to stay here.

We learn things.  It might not seem like we do.  But we do learn.  We are always learning.  The softness in our soul keeps us learning just like it keeps us alive.

++

Drumming.  Well, I am learning as I drum.  Without a drum.  Just on my nearly silent practice pad.  As I wrote in my recent post

+MY DISSOCIATION AND MY DRUM TRAINING

I continue to discover my identities without identity.  I wrote down some more of them today to add to the list:

- The one who STOPS and FREEZES

- The one with an altered sense of time

- The one formed in and needing silence and quiet (the still one?)

- The one who does not (cannot?) breath

- The one who does not (need to?) eat

++

In my lesson yesterday “the one who stops” showed up.  Of course.  Trying to drum along with my teacher.  I reached that point without warning.  As always.  STOP.  Arms and hands akimbo in the air.  Poised as if in a photograph snapped in a nanosecond of time.  “Get moving again, Linda!”

Nope.

Not going to happen.

Sometimes, with the patience, humor, persistence, encouragement of my teacher who keeps his sticks going right along I can move past those moments and resume.  Right along with him.  There is ALWAYS a point where the freezing stays frozen.

In some ways that’s to be expected.  My prof can drum so much faster than I can at this point he will always be ahead of me.  The trick each week is to see if I can get just a little faster, stay with him just a little longer as he gradually speeds up.  But I HATE that freezing and the inability to START again once that happens where the STOP has no GO after it.

+

“The one with the altered sense of time” learned something very intriguing yesterday.  I don’t understand the complexity of this learning process for prof’s other students who at some point must “perform” something.  But he spoke of the fact that adrenaline powerfully effects how a drummer perceives the speed of their drumming.  What MOSTLY happens is that when stressed the drummer speeds up.  They need to be told to “step it down a notch or two.”

All fine and good.  “Humans do not have an internal metronome within them.  Nobody does.”

All fine and good but I need to eventually ask teach about the “keeping the beat steady” part — no matter the SPEED of the drumming.

For the future….

HOWEVER…..

MY part of the story?  I told teach that sometimes at the faster metronome speeds I can be listening to the steady clicking beat and IT CHANGES ITSELF.  Or so it seems.  Becoming unsteady.  Un-rhythmic.

I always logically know this is impossible.  I invested some bucks in an excellent digital quartz metronome.  It goes nowhere but where I set it.  But to ME – it does sometimes change it’s beat — impossible or not.

Nope.  Very interesting.  That is the OPPOSITE of what happens for “ordinary” people learning to drum.  For me, then, it must be a consequence of the unsettled and unsettling nature of both my “PSTD” and “depression” that my inner adrenaline speed can send me off somewhere — at some speed — where time is not a static fixed-interval kind of “thing.”  Of course time IS a non-thing.  A NO-THING.  A nothing?

+

I also asked teach about having him teach me some keyboard exercises.  The brain training, the coordination, the increasing muscle memory, increasing speed — all of that will transfer to drumming.  However.  I am a SILENCE lover, really, who even now lives in a city surrounded, enmeshed, entrapped within noise pollution.  I don’t want to LISTEN to the “noise” of a keyboard.

But perhaps I MUST increase my tolerance for sound!  How am I ever going to play a “real” drumset if I cannot tolerate the NOISE of it?

Go ahead.  Chuckling allowed.

I told teach I am a musician on the other side of silence.  Music HAS to include sound and silence.  I think to most people music is on the side of the SOUND part of it.  Like numbers going up on the positive side on a number line from zero – that’s the noisy part of music.  Going down into the negative numbers below zero.  That’s the silent part.  I like the silence.

Teach assured me that to learn the techniques on keyboard he would give me to practice I have to at least hear SOMETHING of the notes being played because I need to differentiate the notes completely, one from the other, as I train to move VERY FAST up and down and around those keys.

Lately, in the tender places where I feel being human with others being human, I think that the drumming is solely FOR ME.  IF I learn keyboard, and learn to read that music, I might be able to share with OTHER people what they like about music.

Once a person can move very fast and accurately, precisely, no matter upon what instrument being played, the SOUND would seem to wash out the silence.

Is that true?

I am to find out.  Even on the days when I have to force myself to practice.  When I have to remind myself that I WANT to do this.  Because I have to battle for my own life through this depression that sends me somewhere else more and more often in order to get my practicing done lately.  (I think to a large extent because winter is not far from now – and that challenge will again be nearly more than I can bear.  And I know it.)

An important reason to let whatever side of music I claim as mine take place in this little apartment.  Let it grow.  Bring it to life within me.

Past this?  I do not know.

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Here is our first book out in ebook format.  Click here to view or purchase –

STORY WITHOUT WORDS

It lists for $2.99 and can be read by Amazon Prime customers without charge.  Reviews for the book on the Amazon.com site are welcome.

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Leave a Comment »

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+GORILLA LOVE (lost)

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Friday, July 18, 2014.  I read an excellent book several years ago within whose pages I saw myself mirrored back to me.   A good thing?  I would say no, but it was an essential thing.

I absolutely do not believe that I was born autistic, yet the author’s experience of herself in her life was so familiar to me I ended up underlining many of her words as I wrote comments about my similar feelings and perceptions in the book’s margins.

I HATE the fact that I know much of what this woman knows.  It is a reality for me that I do, and a very sad one.

Songs of the Gorilla Nation: My Journey Through Autism Paperback – March 22, 2005

by Dawn Prince-Hughes Ph.D.

++

I recommended the book to a friend of mine who has read it and today sent me the link to this NOVA video:

Watch What Happens When This Gorilla Is Reunited With The Human Who Raised Him. So Many Feels.

It was the moment when the gorilla has his loved one wrapped tightly in his arms that cut through to the deep infant-child abuse trauma-created sadness in my heart as if my being was sliced open.  This video touches my own wound that evidently will never heal in this lifetime (I turn 63 at the end of August).

I WANT to love and to feel loved in THIS way!  That ability was taken away from me.

Such a love.  It appears so organic.  So primal.  So essential.  Necessary.  Easy?

I know for a fact that for someone like me this kind of love – the EXPERIENCE of this kind of love – is not a part of reality.  I am not saying that it COULD not be, but given the conditions of American culture and the life that I lead here what I WOULD need to heal the depths of my love-wound is not available.  Therefore I will never know if my wound could heal under the right conditions.

So – for me – I just know it’s impossible.  I am not going searching for words to explain what I mean.  I am convinced that those readers who watch this video and feel this kind of powerful, profound, pervasive sadness that I feel will know exactly what I am talking about.  It is a part of who we are.

But I do not say it is a “bad” thing.  It is a REAL thing.  And it is a sad one.  Tragic.  Tied to profound grief for what we missed and for what was done to us to rob us of the innate experience of love-experience.  Abuse of infants and children NEEDS TO STOP!

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Here is our first book out in ebook format.  Click here to view or purchase –

STORY WITHOUT WORDS

It lists for $2.99 and can be read by Amazon Prime customers without charge.  Reviews for the book on the Amazon.com site are welcome.

++++

Leave a Comment »

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