I am having a terribly difficult time finding a way to be quiet right now. I am awake at night and I would love to go to sleep during the day but I cannot. I cannot . I am truly, unequivocally, indisputably, afraid.
I am chasing my own self and it is a great challenge for me to simply get quiet. I have never in my life experienced anything like this. I see now what it is like to experience fear on a level of PTSD.
Where do I begin?
Which problem do I address?
I feel like I need to borrow someone else’s brain to help me think things through so that I can stop and slow down and rest a bit.
The trauma underneath has been there a very long time and I have addressed it on many levels. The deepest inroad I have made has been through prayer and forgiveness. But what I know about myself is that my heart still reaches for love. It is still raw and open. And yes, at times, it does hurt.
I have spoken about forgiveness frequently. For me, it is a daily practice. And sometimes the questions I ask myself are new ones. Thank goodness. Because through the “new,” there is the hope of progress.
I think it takes stripping down to the most naked place of not even knowing who you are any longer and beginning from there to ask yourself what it will take to actually forgive that which you have not yet forgiven. To see what is still in the way. To see what you need to give up or offer or change in order to begin to cross a threshold which has not yet been crossed. From this place you get to see what is essentially you and true and what actually remains, what is honestly still there. For me, even in this state, I find it is me still reaching to open my heart, reaching to forgive, not knowing answers to practical questions to fix the most essential and immediate problems in my life, but knowing I will do anything to heal pain. Well, I won’t have sex with Rush Limbaugh and I won’t commit a criminal act, but I will dig into the deepest places to heal.
I have been seeking an answer to questions I may never be afforded. And I have learned after nearly a decade, that for me, asking them is just not the way towards healing (which is why it is not useful to speak of the experience here). Finding a way to be with what is, even if it is inconceivable and hurtful and damaging and contemptible and fill in the rest... is what matters. And that is the path. Finding a way to integrate the truth of life. Finding a way to deal with the hand you have been dealt. Because we don’t get to say to god, “Hey, I don’t like this life, give me a DIFFERENT life!”
I have my feelings and my grief when they come knocking. And when I am really grounded, I actually get to a place of believing that god or the universe or something I may have set into motion in a previous life, may have actually placed me precisely where I am sitting now as a way of protecting me. That this pain which I carry is possibly a way of sparing me from further pain.
What to do next? Have faith? When smack in the midst of having a PTSD response, that doesn’t exactly work. But, steps towards remembering concrete things about myself which are whole and good and remembering the places which I, myself know I can always rely upon... that’s a pretty good start which ultimately leads to a place of faith.
I don’t have any answers right now. I am finding it hard to put one foot in front of the other. But one thing I know is that I feel compassion and mercy for all of it. For myself. For those who have harmed me knowingly and unknowingly. For those who may be angry with me right now for any reason whatsoever. For those whom I have ever failed knowingly or unknowingly.
We don’t get to say to god “I want a different body. A different biology. A different biography.” But it is up to us how we deal with our circumstances. Because the biography can be written by us. This much I know. It’s just a change in thinking.
I may not be able to take a step right now. But I know that I can because I can change that thought right now. And give it a try no matter what it feels like. Right now. I can.
I can. And I will.