Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for June, 2014

++++

Saturday, June 28, 2014.  I am unfamiliar with what it feels like to go so many days without being inspired to write a blog post.  I miss the writing.  I miss the feeling of inspiration that has always been a part of my writing.  It seems that at present I am simply left to examine whatever change of direction I have taken in my life that seems to threaten my feeling that perhaps I have something helpful to offer others who suffer the lifelong effects from a terrible childhood.

Yet as soon as I wrote those words I saw it is a narrowing of extreme focus that has captivated most of my attention at present.  I am pouring my efforts into my youngest grandson who turns two July 20th.  He is in my care at least 9 hours each weekday.

On the grand scale it is being trapped by weather in one room of my small apartment that adds so many layers of difficulty to my task.  It continues to rain often here.  Winters in Fargo provide at least five months of frigid temperatures coupled with deadly wind chills.  My own natural inclinations towards being outdoors year round in my southern high desert lifestyle have no way to be fulfilled here.

Yet for whatever personal struggles I am going through here it is my effort to provide this little boy the best opportunity I can give him to form his little self in an environment of supportive peaceful calm that now directs my life.

The terrible noise pollution of this place seems more than I can bear.  I could list difficulties that challenge me here as if my essence is being forged in a blast furnace.  I do not wish to write about what I do not wish to focus upon.  The energy it takes for me to reside here is massive.

I think about the heat it takes in a kiln to turn a piece of clay into an enduring object of  beauty.  On the human level it takes the instant-to-instant living of life to provide what a rapidly developing little one needs to grow a nervous system-brain and emerging mind and self that will be the dwelling place that little one will move forward with for a lifetime.

Experiences of early life can never be repeated in terms of their critical impact on setting the trajectory of a life.  Doing the job of providing whatever I can toward whatever this little boy needs when he is with me is the focus of my life.  I can weather the challenges of my life but such a little person as my grandson is can weather very little on his own.  At this point words fail me and vanish.

++

I see in  my mind a circle I create within which this little boy is completely safe and secure.  It is my attention —  as I attend to his developmental needs —  that maintains this circle which itself is a living “thing” upon which a newly forming life depends.

I am, of course, simply a part of this child’s life.  Yet both of his parents work full-time which leaves 50-55 hours per week open in the daily life of my little grandson during which he is without his primary attachment people to meet his critical needs — which certainly do not cease while they are away from  him.

My grandson will never consciously remember any part of this time he and I spend together and yet I believe these hours during these months of critical development add central value to the betterment of his future.

In the grand scheme of life on this planet our little theater is minuscule.

Or is it?

++

PS.  I have a drumming lesson today which I am greatly looking forward to!  Interestingly, I am learning a great deal about how my dissociation is operating as I practice.  Perhaps I will write a post about that one of these days….

++++

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 »

++++

Read Full Post »

++++

Monday, June 23, 2014.  I used to have a friend many years ago, an older man with 35 years of sobriety who kept my old car running to perfection through the years I worked on my art therapy master’s degree in Albuquerque, New Mexico.  He used to tell me that hard times grew pathways into a person’s heart through which increased wisdom and compassion could flow.  Therefore “tests and difficulties” were a very good thing.

I have been wondering about my tears being so close to the surface since my son returned home far away after his visit here.  What is it about our culture that shuns sadness and tears as if they are a sign of flawed weakness, inefficient and ineffective at best, a sign of “depression” and sickness at worst?

Two words appeared in my thoughts today:  Affection and tenderness.  Wouldn’t these be among our chosen, favored feelings to keep close to us as a good, strong glue to hold both our inner and outer life together?  And is there any reason why tears themselves could not be accepted as being one main ingredient of these states of being?

I suffered greatly through my childhood because nobody in my life ever felt these feelings for me (except my brother who was 13 months older than me and my grandmother who had her access to me denied by Mother).  It was one of the great areas of neglect in my early life that nobody ever noticed the absence of affection and tenderness toward me.  Rather, terrible abuse and hatred came my way and yes, I cried a LOT.

The sickness in Mother as it poisoned my father LIKED to see me suffer.  In Mother’s broken mind my suffering expunged all other suffering from Mother and her family.  No wonder I have personally grown to see tears as being associated only with harm.

We normally respond to other people’s suffering with compassionate, helpful concern.  I guess I turn that same ray inward toward myself when I detect my own tears present.  Yet when my tears are tied to deep affection and tenderness, appreciation, even awe, they are not a bad thing.  They are a sign that I have found ways to let life create what my friend described as bigger, deeper places in the heart.

That is something to aim for, not condemn, fear or always try to “fix.”

++++

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 »

++++

Read Full Post »

++++

Sunday, June 22, 2014.  I want to write about something else for a few moments:  Joys.

One evening my son laid out on my daughter’s kitchen table exquisite pieces of porcelain and stoneware wheel-thrown pottery he made for us and carried to us wrapped inside his clothing inside his carry-on suitcase when he flew out for his visit.  We admired.  His two sisters, my older grandson (age 4) and I each chose pieces we liked best to take into our own lives.  There are no words for such an experience.  So achingly full of love and precious.

Later that night I realized I still have the collection of clay tools that my son and I shared as we worked at a large table on clay in our home the year between his second and third birthdays.  I found them and showed them to him the next day when he stopped by here.  How affirming and joyful to me it is that he chose ten of them to take into his life.

Some of the tools are sharp and could not be carried with him on his flight home yesterday.  I am going to mail them to him but first I am going to make a cloth storage holder for them — long with a pocket for the handle of each tool to slide into — that can be rolled up and tied.

(What is it about being human that love and joy and tears all seem to live together within?  I feel this as I write these words.  I miss my beloved son just as I will miss my beloved daughters and grandsons if I find in a year that I really cannot inwardly afford to continue to live in this horrendous cold winter climate and return to my own desert place that feels like home to me.)

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Yes, we child abuse survivors did live through hell that put us through a process that seems to have enlarged and honed some amazing gifts.

Something else quite special happened last week as my son and I an my daughter and her two little boys traveled to visit a zoo an hour south of here.  There were no crowds.  The weather was perfect.  The zoo vibrates with the loving care from humans who care for those confined – and mostly protected – animal species members.

Not unlike my experience of sharing at the smaller local zoo here with that so distressed wild goose who needed to be noticed, heard, helped to calm from its terrible crying as I wrote about it in a post a month or so ago, this past week it was the buffalo who especially touched my soul.

As I approached their double-fenced enclosed pasture to stand at one end all eight of the animals within turned to walk to meet me.  They lined up against their fence, glorious massive heads turned sideways enough that I could see one huge dark eye of each animal and without any sound we spoke to one another of days gone by individually and for one’s species.  Of enduring what is hard and not even just or fair.  Of strength.  Of dignity.  Of not being able to roam around in one’s own world – the pure wild world being destroyed.

Of the sadness that must be contained and lived with well — graciously —  courageously — no matter what.

As I finally turned to find and follow my family they all turned and walked slowly away.  “I will miss you.  I will remember you.  I know you.  I love you.  We are all OK.  Thank you.”

The sentiments flowed out mutually between us without sound until from across the zoo came the mournful, powerful bellow of a Bactrian 2-humped camel, of which there are only 950 left on the planet.

++

Such moments in life where the light shimmers and gleams sustain me.  Heal me.  Help me.  They remind me nobody is alone on this earth.  But for some reason I may never understand in this lifetime not even such moments seem to pass me by without tears along with the joy.

++++

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 »

++++

Read Full Post »

++++

Sunday, June 22, 2014.  It is time for me to write something, no matter how incomplete and inadequate I may feel my writing to be.  I doubt many stop along the way to document in written words what their experience of rappelling a cliff side feels like in mid-climb.  Or in mid fall because falling is what I felt like yesterday.  Free falling into a bottomless well or falling helpless over a cliff as I worked to grab anything I could find to hold onto to stop my fall.

I called good friends who know, love, accept and understand me best because they, too, live under the effects of lifelong consequences of severe early abusive trauma.  They offer me a kind of rescuing.  This rescuing comes from them helping me to verbally describe what I am feeling at the same time I work to clarify triggers for my feelings of deep distress both in my current life and in my past so I can begin to fit puzzle pieces together of a picture where I can feel more solid again.  More cohesive.  Less desperately fragmented and far less hopelessly lost.

++

Over a decade ago one of my sisters recognized how good things happening in my present life can themselves be directly tied to trauma in my childhood.  She knows what my childhood was like.  She was there even though she lived with my other siblings in the “good” world our psychotic Borderline Personality Disorder mother’s mind created for everyone else in our family to live in except me.

So I am today calming down enough within — becoming more oriented, my thoughts more organized — to pick up the knowledge and truth in that puzzle piece to identify that during this past week when my baby (who is 29) was here visiting a hotbed of good experiences directly shook up my inner trauma-built reality — because he had to leave.  (It had been five years since I had seen all three of my children together.  This was the first time I was able to see my son with his nephews.)

My son has gone home over 1500 miles away from here and such a wake of massive sadness in me arose to greet his departure I became nearly swallowed up whole by the tidal force of its power to disrupt what is now always my fragile — and vulnerable — equilibrium.

++

Overload and overwhelm.  How familiar that feeling is to me from my 19-year insanely abusive childhood (from birth).

Absolutely NOTHING stood between infant-child me and the force of the violent, brutal, on-going abusive rage and hatred of Mother toward me.  Any solace I found, any break of temporary reprieve I ever found was generated by me inside my own young body-brain-mind.  And then always my inner sense of fragile equilibrium would be exploded again by yet another insanely abusive attack my Mother.  I then had no choice but to pass through those times being obliterated as a person on every level but my suffering through what she forced me to endure on a daily basis.  This pattern usually happened to me many times a day and often during the worst of Mother’s rage-filled storms for days, weeks and even for months on end.

++

Raising my three children — an occupation that took the span of 35 years of my adulthood due to their age spacing until all three had reached age 18 — somehow miraculously stabilized and solidified me.  When my youngest left home ten years ago my world really did crumble, disintegrate and fall apart and I never saw it coming.  I did not (because I could not?) prepare myself to lose myself at my children’s leaving the nest I did everything in my power to create and sustain for THEM.

Yes, the trail my children had to take through their childhoods had to follow the tangle of me trying to make my way in a world I can never understand and was profoundly and absolutely NEVER prepared to live in.  But being a mother centered on raising my children to be whole, healthy and happy was the glue I used to keep me in my own life together.

++

I knew none of this consciously.  And there seems to be an infinite number of levels to awareness.  As I told my dear friend yesterday as soon as my son returned home from his visit here I was plunged again into a boiling cauldron of powerful, trauma-created emotions (being conveyed to me through my super-charged right limbic brain centers).

++

Love coupled with joy overwhelmed by sorrow.

++

This is what my body knows and it inextricably combines my past with my present.  The speed, the force, the power of right-brain-fed emotions to disintegrate any cohesive sense I have of myself moving through time in my life is as stunning as it is unimaginably devastating.

++

Dr. Allan N. Schore writes about the neurobiology of early infant rapid right brain development that takes place through the infant-mother attachment relationship as the mother literally, according to Schore, downloads her right limbic brain into her infant’s rapidly forming right limbic brain.  Face-to-face extremely rapid interactions create and sustain this infant brain building process.  (Google search the terms “schore mother infant attachment stop the storm” for background information.)

Because in the past 24 months of my life (I am approaching my 63rd birthday) I have finally achieved the most bedrock understanding of how Mother’s hatred of me was entirely created and sustained by the psychotic workings of her sick m ind, I am learning how absolutely devastating to my own efforts to live a balanced life the impact of her psychosis was and will always be to me.

There was NO SANITY in Mother’s interactions with me from the first breath I took.  Oddly enough it was during my drumming lesson with my most professional teacher yesterday afternoon that I was stunningly presented with one of the most fundamental effects of the abusive trauma I suffered as it continues to impact me.

I marched my feeling broken and most sad self the mile walk to lesson, sat down across from Brett in that tiny sound-proofed practice room with the drum pad stand between us — both of us with our drum sticks gripped in our hands.  Arms raised in the beginning classical drumming position.  And the freezing began for me.

My teacher is amazing.  I chose to tell him some of what I was experiencing because he asked (and I could tell he could hear me).  I WILLED myself to bring my hands down, each in their own time, slow sticks to the practice pad head.  As if I could BEAT my way forward and through and free of the trauma triggered block I was trapped by and within.

A few strokes of each hand later and my left hand froze in midair and would NOT move.  I was staring forward directly across the pad into Brett’s eyes as I spoke the words that formed at that instant in my mind:  “It is not safe to force my left hand into motion at this time.  Doing so activates my right brain which is currently overloaded with emotion.  I have to let it rest.  It is not at all wise to further stimulate my right brain by left had movements at this time.”

I saw nothing in Brett’s eyes but complete calmness and acceptance of what I was saying.  He held our gaze and what immediately happened for me next felt like an instantaneous opening of a tunnel or a channel through time directly to myself as a very young child.  This sensation then changed into a fast-forward in time until I was around age six or seven.

As I stared into Brett’s eyes — the only physical action I could muster at that time — a profound awareness came to me both in feeling and in words within my mind:  “Oh my God!  What I survived!  HOW IN GOD’S NAME WAS I EVER ABLE TO LEARN ANYTHING?

++

Dr. Martin Teicher’s research (Google search the terms “stop the storm teicher article” for more information) describe’s from the top down what kinds of brain changes happen during traumatic infant and childhood development.  I know that what I experienced so clearly yesterday in that lesson was a living example of what that trauma altered brain development feels like for my right limbic (emotional) brain hemisphere, my left (rational) brain hemisphere and for my trauma-altered corpus callosum region that transmits and integrates information between brain hemispheres — as I try to live my life under these circumstances.

The freezing of motion in my left arm and hand was clearly intended to PROTECT my right brain — and through that protection to protect and preserve the integrity of ME.

It seems, then, that when life in my childhood overloaded me that the horror of the forced isolation and stationary solitary confinement patterns that were a part of Mother’s ongoing psychotic abuse of me were necessary to my own survival of everything Mother did to me.  The truth of this seems so darkly bizarre in its essential consequences that no part of my rational thinking processes can grasp it.  How could it be that something as horrible as this isolation and solitary confinement I was forced to endure throughout my childhood in between horrendous beatings and attacks HAVE BEEN GOOD FOR ME?

In fact it appears most likely they were required by me so that my body-brain-self could in some way recuperate enough to go on living.

++

What I see today is that I am a miracle of survival.  I need not berate myself for needing to have QUIET times within which my entire self on every level can recuperate enough to settle down from the extremes of stimulation that happen for me just by being alive (AKA PTSD, etc.)  My life has to be very simple and as clear as possible from unforeseen events that can so easily topple my inner balance — that has grown to be more and more fragile the older I become.

It seems I have nearly maxed out my bank of inner resources.  My son is fine.  All three of my children are fine.  I could not be happier for them!

I, on the other hand….

I am a special needs case.  I am continually learning more about what that means.  All I know today – right now –  is that most gratefully I have yet once again stopped falling.

Not that everyone isn’t special.  Just that truth and fairness indicate that severe early abusive trauma survivors live a special kind of life in a special kind of trauma-altered body that requires a special kind of knowledge to facilitate anything like smooth passage through life.

We are the only ones who really know what living “in here” is like.  There is very little we can take for granted.  Yet we do have shimmering glimmers of light rippling across pure waters just as we do sometimes have hard times of darkness.  At this moment I am most grateful I am seeing glimmers and I hope the same for you.

PS.  I am practicing drumming again – most gently so when that need appears.

++++

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 »

++++

Read Full Post »

++++

Wednesday, June 11, 2014.  My friend Sandy, who stays on top of a lot of fascinating brain research stuff sent me this link yesterday —

Science Shows How Drummers’ Brains Are Actually Different From Everybody Elses’

By Jordan Taylor Sloan

It’s a great FUN  article!!  Well, at least to me.  Which my friend knew it would be.  If you click on the title above you will be able to watch videos — which really make me smile —  included in the article which I repost parts of here….

 

“For starters, rock steady drummers can actually be smarter than their less rhythmically-focused bandmates. A study from the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm found a link between intelligence, good timing and the part of the brain used for problem-solving. Researchers had drummers play a variety of different beats and then tasked them with a simple 60-problem intelligence test. The drummers who scored the highest were also better able to keep a steady beat. Apparently figuring out how to play in time is just another form of problem-solving.

But even though a steady drummer may be more intelligent than his or her bandmates, the drummer’s gifts can be shared: a tight beat can actually transfer that natural intelligence to others. In studies on the effects of rhythm on brains, researchers showed that experiencing a steady rhythm actually improves cognitive function. One psychology professor at the University of Washington used rhythmic light and sound therapy on his students and discovered that their grades improved. Similarly, one researcher at the University of Texas Medical Branch used that method on a group of elementary and middle school boys with ADD. The therapies had a similar effect to Ritalin, eventually making lasting increases to the boys’ IQ scores.

Granted, these studies focused more on the effects of rhythm on the mind rather than on the mind behind the rhythm. That being said, drummers’ consistent rhythmic focus has positive effects on them and those around them (yes, even their neighbors). That’s because when drummers bring a steady rhythm (and corresponding problem-solving abilities) to a group setting, they actually create a “drummer’s high” for everyone around them. University of Oxford researchers discovered that when drummers play together, both their happiness levels and pain tolerance increase, similar to Olympic runners.

Observing that high led researchers to hypothesize that drumming was integral to community-building and that sharing rhythms could be the sort of behavior necessary for the evolution of human society.

Drumming is a fundamentally human thing. A lot of modern music has shifted towards drum machines over humans to create ultra-precise electronic rhythms. But it turns out that what we typically perceive as error is really just a uniquely human sense of time: Researchers at Harvard found that drummers harness a different sort of internal clock that moves in waves, rather than linearly as a real clock does. They match an innate rhythm that has been found in human brainwaves, heart rates during sleep and even the auditory nerve firings in cats. When a human drummer plays, he or she finds a human rhythm.

A lot of these studies have to do with rhythm just as much as with drumming, but drummers are more engaged with those mental elements than most. They are people tapped into a fundamental undercurrent of what it means to be human, people around whom bands and communities form.”

++

Some people think it was the sitting-around-a-flickering-light-like-a-fire-in-a-pit that so captured humans when televisions hit the scene.  Makes sense to me.

Meanwhile, back to drumming practice I go!

++++

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 »

++++

Read Full Post »

++++

Wednesday June 11, 2014.  This post is about my need to create a subtitle for the ebook I have published with my daughter Ramona — 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.  However, it will most likely be a long time before I will read any of them.  I don’t wish to be derailed in my writing by criticism, something that already exists in one of the three reviews that have been posted for this book as a good friend of mine told me.  My friend doubts that the review came from someone who read the whole book.

My daughter is suggesting that a subtitle to the book needs to be attached to the main title, and that the book’s cover should stand as it is.

With all of the major changes in my life over this past year I have taken no time to think about my books.  Yet this morning my mind is captivated by what a subtitle for STORY WITHOUT WORDS might look like.  As soon as a line of possible subtitle words appears in my mind it is followed by another one.  I would much rather have clear-sighted focus rather than find myself caught up within a word tumbler.

++

Central to my book is my consideration of what could have happened in my my mother’s childhood to break her mind and to turn her into the super abuser of me.  While the truth will never be known about Mother I believe it is critically important that we at least make attempts to understand what risk and resiliency factors combine to create child abusers.  While I am not afraid to write about this topic I understand that there will be people who are afraid to read what I write.

So for now my choice for a subtitle  for STORY WITHOUT WORDS would simply be Child abuse and the death of hope.

++

I don’t think the human mind can survive without hope.  That’s just my bias.  When hope is crushed and broken especially during very early mind stages of development it may be that this distortion of hope builds itself right into the fabric of the brain-mind’s physiology.  If, as seems to have been true in Mother’s case, genes for mental illness are present that are put into motion as child abuse occurs, a mind distorted by both the abuse and the mental illness will appear in consequence.  This is essentially what this book is about.

++++

Leave a Comment »

++++

 

 

Read Full Post »

++++

Monday, June 9, 2014.  It could be that babycare duties rather overwhelm me.  Here I am on my second full day away from my grandsons – writing.

The thoughts I am posting here led me to look for this post’s link – which is connected to a concept I have discussed with a friend that he terms TEMPORALITY.

+WRAITH CHILD (Dark Side book 2, Chapter 14) 

++

“If I actually looked from the outside the way I feel on my insides I don’t imagine I would look human.”

++

Now that is perhaps one of the oddest thoughts I’ve had in a while.  It was followed by a brief mental allusion to the book,

Ghosts from the Nursery: Tracing the Roots of Violence by Robin Karr-Morse and others

And a desire to search my own blog for the link I just posted above about the time the words “You are a wraith” appeared in my mind although I had no conscious knowledge of what a wraith even was.

A will-o-wisp.

++

What would I look like?  Ms. Data like Mr. Data from Star Trek – The Next Generation?

I am not really surprised at my “not human” thought.  Dissociation and its often accompanying senses of “depersonalizaation” and “derealization” are certainly very familiar to me.  Unfortunately so.

It seems in this moment that if I don’t feel real to myself at times I should not look or sound real to anyone else at those times, either.  That would only be fair, seems to me.

That way there’d be a lot less confusion where I am concerned.  As trauma-altered as my development was, and as trauma changed as I am as a person (Google search recommended here for “stop the storm teicher’s article“), it seems unreasonable of life that to outsiders I look no different from ordinary others.  I AM different.  (Dr. Teicher explains a lot of this scientifically).

I FEEL different.  I even know about these differences by comparing myself to myself — who and how I am NOW to who and how I was through much of my mostly oblivious adulthood.

I had no way, for example, of understanding the impact of the severe child abuse I suffered until someone told me I had been abused when I was 29.  I had no idea what being “a victim” even meant.  I could not comprehend that I had been abused.  Nobody ever told me.  Nobody talked about it.  I had no points of comparison or frame of reference, no words, no language related to abuse.

So?

Was I not an abuse survivor, not a victim, until I began to learn that I was?

Did what was real to me change?  Did I become a different human — before and after?

++

Ordinary people know nothing, really, about anyone.  Yet as we communicate with one another the truth is we communicate our truths in millions of split-second signals that have nothing to do with words — and usually not even anything to do with consciousness.

(Implicit memories.  Buried memories.  Body memories.  Who says they are silent?  Who says the truth of who we are is not vividly apparent?)

We mostly work very hard at pretending these signals do not exist.  In other words, people don’t make it a habit “to be real” with one another.

(So — I feel unreal because I do notice the “ignored” real signals?)

These unreal transactions unsettle me.  Make me want to run away and hide.  Or SHOUT, “What is REALLY going on here?”  (In fact, these transactions can make me feel crazy!)

++

Very young children don’t know how to mask their feelings or reactions.  They have to be taught how to do that.  (ASAP?)  Young children are real.  They live in a very real world.

 Mostly adults can hardly wait for them to grow up, to mature, to get civilized.  Adults are not comfortable with real in our culture.  So we change the nature of reality (or pretend that we do), calling black white and white black and then go on our way.

But nobody could fool Mr. Data.  I would think people would feel very safe and secure around him — if he were real.  There would be no fuzzy areas.  Things would be clear and truthful.

Nobody would have to wonder or be lost in gray areas that don’t need to exist but do — because adults insist not-real is real.

“Are you really happy?”

“Sure I am.”

“Absolutely.”

“Without any doubt.”

“Without question.”

++

We don’t walk around telling (mostly) strangers how we inwardly feel.  Nobody cares.  Messy business.  “Don’t tell me your reality and I won’t tell you mine.”

Very neat.  Very clean and tidy.  (Sterile comes to mind.)

Very efficient.  As if we are all Datas?

I don’t wee the honoring of being human in that.  The respect….

But —- then —- I really don’t understand this world.  Maybe I am one of “the visitors.”  A watcher.  A listener.  An observer.  A wonderer and a wanderer.

Which is all just fine as long as I do all in my power to fit in and be like everyone else.  Rock no boats.  Make no waves.  Upset no one.

Ever.

++++

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 »

++++

Read Full Post »

++++

Monday, June 9, 2014.  I continue to document my ongoing experience of being alive in a body permanently changed in its physiological development by overwhelming traumatic abuse from birth as it continued unabated for 18 years of my childhood.  In ways that I do not understand I often find it helpful to snatch things that trouble me to confine them in words I write here.

It’s not that what troubles me STOPS troubling me after I write a post.  I wish that were so.  But something helpful does usually happen when I write.  So what if this process remains a mystery to me?  I need any reprieve I can find.

One thing I know about myself is that I am always in danger of being blindsided by my trauma history in ways that I have in the past allowed to dissuade me from pursuing experiences that bring me joy.  Currently the threat is to my drumming passion.  I do NOT want to let myself walk away and leave behind something that is connected to a powerful inward passion, something I LOVE to do.

I have a dear friend who has agreed to not let me walk away from drumming.  Yet it is inside of myself that I am fighting this battle with myself today.  I am hoping if I write about this the burden will be lifted and my joy will return.

++

I am paying 11% of my meager disability income each month to take weekly 1/2-hour drum lessons at a local music store taught by an expert who has a doctorate in percussion.  Brett also teaches piano and flute.  Up until this past Saturday my desire, my willingness, my enthusiasm, my hopefulness, my resiliency has carried me forward just fine.

I was “HIT” and I am wavering.  My spirit is dwindling.

The first time I went to lessons I blanched as I walked through a wall of terror into a tiny practice room and the door was shut.  There I was choosing to enter a tiny confined space which triggered a long history of trauma from a childhood filled with solitary, forced confinement which progressed into my teens where Mother’s psychosis led her to finding even more bizarre ways of enforcing her desire to keep confined me in her hell.

On top of that I agreed with myself to sit with a stranger.  Well, as time has moved forward I am finding that even having to drum during lessons on the same small practice pad (which sits on a stand) with Brett is extremely hard for me to do.  On top of that his pad has a raised rim around it where mine at home does not — so hitting the rim during lessons remains a big problem for me along with having to share a drumming pad with anyone else!

Then comes the performance anxiety.  I can drum the first piece of music Brett gave me going on 3 weeks ago just fine at home alone and on my own.  I CANNOT do so under the lesson’s conditions.  So I am paying my money to be sent home each week to practice this single damn piece yet AGAIN — not because I cannot play it but because I cannot play it in front of my teacher, along WITH my teacher.

Then it comes to now being corrected for flaws in my hand position that have been there for weeks.  It strikes me as extra difficult to have not been corrected weeks ago for flaws in hand positioning that I have continued to practice until I have great prowess — with the flaws!

It is all nerve wracking.  It all discourages me — right on through the part where  Brett insisted in my last lesson that he gave me three sheets of new music to practice –WHICH HE DID NOT GIVE ME!  I would HAVE them if he’d given them to me — as I so smoothly pointed out to him.

He was also not happy I went to YouTube to find out how to do a triple stroke drum roll because Brett had assigned me that for a week’s practice without showing me how to do one first.  I learned to do what I watched online — and of course — you guessed it — it was ALL WRONG!

Along with what else I pointed out to him when he told me not to worry if I can’t drum perfectly….  “After all it took me millions of hours of playing to get as good as I am,” Brett said to me.

Me in return?  “I don’t HAVE millions of hours to practice left in my lifetime.  In case you haven’t noticed I am significantly older than you are.”  Brett is half my age!  We both smiled.  That tight lips-in-a-line kind of smile.

Do I give up?  WILL I give up?  I don’t WANT to practice today.  That’s the first time this has happened to me since I began my lessons.  I MUST work through this.  I don’t have that many years left to let go of my passions.  I deserve my joy!

I WANT to learn this.  Brett is teaching me the perfect way to drum — classical drumming.  I MUST let myself understand that perfection is not in the people although it is to be striven for in technique.

Who is going to advocate for me if I don’t do it for myself?  Nobody.

So my next step is to have the music store order a cymbal stand for me that my own practice pad will screw onto.  It will help me at home so I don’t have to tape my pad onto a stool that I need elsewhere for other things in my tiny apartment.  I won’t have to battle the baby who likes to rip the pad off of the stool and run away with it.  (We argue about whose turn it is to use the drumsticks quite often throughout a day.)

Then….  Next step….  I will be able to decide if I want to carry my own stand along with me on my mile walk to lessons so I can set it up in that tiny studio to play on my OWN pad.  Talk about problems with personal space and boundaries!

Where there are problems there have to be solutions.  NOW I will practice.  At the moment I don’t feel I WANT to practice.  I will do so because some part of me is insisting I MUST!!

But what a pain-in-the-patoosky that even the smallest things nearly always turn into some kind of a HUGE CHALLENGE!!  Oh, well.  That’s the story of my life.

++++

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

++++

Leave a Comment »

++++

Read Full Post »

++++

Monday, June 9, 2014.  Baby stayed home today with his daddy, neither of them feeling very well.  I caught baby’s cold last week.  It hit me hard so I am very grateful for a second quiet day to myself.

I discovered thoughts this morning I jotted down in a letter to my 88-year-old friend who was our closet Alaska homesteading neighbor during my childhood.  My friend understands the lifelong effects of severe abuse trauma in early years.  She also had a mother who hated her, but she also had a father and many other relatives who loved her.  I’ll just copy those thoughts into this post.  Perhaps they can mark even a small turning point in my continued hard battle to adapt to conditions last fall’s drastic move here have created in my life.

++

I called the senior ride people this morning and they will get me for my doctor appointment this Friday.  Even such little things scare me!  It costs $3 each way cash so I need to get a stash of ones here.  Better than a hassle with city bus lines which would scare me even more.

Going to the doctor scares me.  I haven’t used that word applied to myself before — but, yes, it’s anxiety — but it is so because I am scared!!

I am trying to get back to sewing my long-handled shoulder bags and I’ll tell you — as strange as it is — even “being scared” is present with that!!  Even stranger I just connected how I feel here with being attacked millions of times as a child [from birth] for the whole 18 years of my childhood by PSYCHOTIC mother [Dorothy knew Mother].

That kind of terror out of nowhere came from Mother every day of my life and I never knew when or WHY!  I am only in this past year coming to understand how the PSYCHOTIC nature of her abuse was both unique (among child abuse) and SO devastating to me.

This has made CHANGE itself my terrifying enemy.  I just chose to change everything in my life [by moving up here] — but even setting up for and returning to my sewing requires hundreds of steps of change because nothing is the same as it was.

Instead of two big rooms to work in I have a little tiny space.  My friend so kindly gave me an older but seems unused Wards sewing machine — but I think I have to restart my sewing with this familiar old nearly worn out machine I used in Arizona.  I am scared of the new one!

My anxiety is so overwhelming no matter what it’s connected to because — I see at this moment — I no longer have any barriers to all that terror Mother created in me that is IN MY BODY!  [I was built that way.]  I used to be able to block it but I no longer can.

How strange.  How real.  How unfortunate!  This is what terrorists do.  They terrorize people.  Your mother did that to you.  I think it created (for me) a massive ocean of terror inside of me — no more ignoring it.  It hasn’t GONE anywhere.  My simple and familiar life in Naco did not create continual strangeness which exists here around everything.  I cannot keep it all at bay here.

But I can slowly work through this sewing chaos.  I need to know where everything is — every kind and piece of fabric, scissors of which I can only find one good pair and I have at least four — sewing must be orderly and efficient if I am to enjoy it, be creative and effective.  At least I have this day as a bonus to try to work through some of this.

++

I add….  I don’t believe that anyone who was not themselves “built by terror” has a clue what I am talking about let alone what I am experiencing.  I intimately and permanently know what “disorganized-disoriented” insecure attachment disorder feels like, what Reactive Attachment Disorder feels like.  I believe the basis of these feelings is terror.

++++

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

++++

Leave a Comment »

++++

Read Full Post »

++++

Wednesday, June 4, 2014.  It took being trapped here last winter to get me reading what I consider trash fiction for the first time in my life.  All of the books have been given to me.  Legal thrillers.  Crime thrillers.  My current reading is “The Gods of Guilt” by Michael Connelly, a “#1 New York Times Bestselling Author.”

A few minutes of this kind of reading before bedtime accompanied by Snickers is part of the trance I require to reside in this so-not-ME place.

But occasionally even within such mental blank space of reading I find a sentence or two that wakes up my resonance-within sleeping beauty.  When that feeling dashes through me I pay attention:  Some part of my own reality so deeply embedded in a trauma past has been touched.

I wanted to mention this one — the main character, a lawyer heading to visit two inmates, thinks —

I knew from prior experience that going into a prison would be exhausting.  It was an ordeal that fully taxed the senses.  Prison sounds and smells, the drab gray steel set off by the garish orange uniforms of the incarcerated, the mixture of desperation and threat in the faces of the men I’d come to visit — it was not a place I ever wanted to spend an extra minute in.  I always felt as if I were holding my breath the whole time I was inside.”  pages 206-207

++

Some main part of myself woke up and paid attention to these words as they bolded themselves and jumped off of their pages.  I KNOW THAT FEELING!

Not only do I know it — no matter what is happening around me I usually feel this feeling — nearly all of the time.

I have in the past year or two come to experience this feeling of being trapped in a body in a life in circumstances that don’t seem to suit me literally as it makes it hard for me to BREATH.  This is a very powerful body-based, visceral sensation that is almost like a claustrophobia of being alive.

Helluva deal!

Of course it anchors into 18 years of torture and confinement.  But it also ties in with a lot that has followed/led me through my adult life.  I have never quite been able to “figure out what is going on” so that I can extricate myself from any situation that makes me feel uncomfortable — change settings, so-to-speak — dive under the ice and come up somewhere else where there might be an opening that leads me to a place in which I might feel “better.”

++

What is comfort?

What is comfortable?

I believe for early traumatic abuse survivors, especially for those of us who were traumatized by our attachment people from birth, the inability to “self sooth” follows us forever in this lifetime.  That sense of being SAFE and SECURE, of being calm in a state of comfortable comfort, escapes us.

++

I do not like Fargo, North Dakota – as you readers here understand.  Yet I am 100% sure I will not be leaving here before another winter in hell arrives.  Yes, there are some really tough choices that have led me to this decision.  I have no money to leave.  I am not willing to dump everything I own to head off back to my high desert comfortable sanctuary place broke and homeless again.

I also believe that this next year is critical in the development of both of my little grandsons.  I have something critical to offer them of significance to their development on the positive side of the scale of their lives.  I will not abandon this task I am committed to finishing.

So here I sit in a CITY without a view, without open wild spaces, feeling crushed as if I am in the prison Mr. Lawyer character described.  I know that feeling.

Sure, there is goodness here.  Much goodness.  But I am one for letting the big circle of life appear in all its splendor — both in its joys and in its difficulties.  I AM making personal sacrifices to be here.  That is a fact.  Goodness happens, as well — but all happens together as a ONE THING called “life.”

++++

Here is our first book out in ebook format.  A very kind professional graphic artist is going to revise our cover pro bono (we are still waiting to hear that he has accomplished this job – I think we will have to find an alternative!).  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

++++

Leave a Comment »

++++

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »