Vlad Kutepov with Unsplash

If I didn’t understand trauma informed care, I wouldn’t understand her story.  She told me that she couldn’t exercise because the harsh breathing evoked by her exercise brought her back to the harsh breathing she experienced when she struggled against her rapist.  When she heard the breathing coming from herself, she would have a mini blackout and it always scared her.  She could not exercise.  She took long walks because, she could always run away if she felt scared and she could always control her breathing when walking.  Her rapist was her brother, as a child, she was often raped.

She noticed that she was not comfortable naked, she wanted to be covered and wouldn’t go to bed without underwear.  She felt vulnerable and oftentimes when in the presence of others, she thought that she was in danger.

When she was breastfeeding, she had to stop as soon as the babies were old enough to pull on her shirt.  It made her think she was being raped, oh hell, she couldn’t believe how vulnerable she felt.

When she finally put it together and figured out why she didn’t like exercising she was fully adult and couldn’t put it in reverse, the damage was done.

She wondered if others suffered the same type of mental agony from their own childhood molestation and abuse.  She read research once that said women often gain weight after being raped.  As if the extra skin and fat will protect them from being raped again.  Or perhaps it was because an overweight woman did not fit in with the sexy ideal of a woman, thus making her feel safer.

Woman Being Comforted, Unsplash

From All Mothers, Everywhere

To my son the drug addict…

Jeremy Paige on Unsplash

What did I miss?  What difference would it make to this adulthood, this one, the one that you have right now?  Did I miss a crucial step that would have kept you from using drugs?  Did I miss some mysterious childhood mantra that would have given you more self love than this?

Why would you ruin this, our lives, with the makings of a mad man?  Drugs, drugs and more drugs.  You know, smarter than others, a brain that absorbs…why do you want this more than anything else?

I can’t stop the questions, because I can’t believe you!

This all feels familiar, not quite a de ja vu’, more like a fuck da you.  Who do you think you are?  There is not another chance for you to fill your world with lies, because we call you, liar!

Orkham Farmanli on Unsplash

So much hurt.  So much pain.  You left no stone unturned in your rampage through the lives of your loved ones.  I see the glass in your eye.  You will not see me again (as if you ever could).  If you saw me truly, this discussion would be void, it would not occur.  But, you must see me first.  This you have not done.  Will you leave my life without ever having known me?  Will you remain a stranger to the love of your mother?  Will you keep your journey lonely, without companionship?

We won’t let drugs into our lives again.  If that means you don’t get to be in our lives, so be it.

Chronic illness: Things I learned and things I know

via Chronic illness: Things I learned and things I know

I haven’t been any good at acceptance.  I haven’t even been able to say that I can see my limitations.  My self-identification has gone from “I’m strong.” to “I’m weak.”  What’s wrong with me?  Why can’t I realize that my life has changed and I don’t have a vote in how it has changed?

I can still be strong.  I just need to find new ways.  As for acceptance, I don’t know how I will get there.  I’m still screaming and kicking and it’s been two years since diagnosis, the illness has been present much longer.

I do know this, in America, it sucks to be sick.  Not only am I not healthy, but I am broke and overwhelmed with how financially disabling my illness is.  I can’t wear make-up on most days and I certainly can’t function enough to work full time.   No one wants to hear about my illness (not even my doctors).  It’s always frustrating to be sick.  America loves beauty and health and abhors the drag of chronic illness.

Every holiday extracts a huge price.  I need a few days just to recover from all of the family festivities.  It’s worth it, holidays are one of the things I can look forward to and enjoy completely.

Still figuring it out …

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