Thursday, July 7, 2011

The Attic

As I lay in bed last night I tried to go to “the attic” of my mind
where my emotional parts live.
Several times I said aloud, “Go up, up, up.”  “Up, up, up” 
but I couldn’t really get there.
I thought it would be easier to do for some reason, but it was not.

Then, I found myself lying on my back, wrists crossed
and arms extended over my head.
My legs shook and I heard a voice, “Open up. Spread your legs Gaye.”
My left ear shut off and I felt a part coming up. I felt small and silent.
I felt that familiar pressure on my abdomen and a cramping feeling.
I felt a warm sensation between my legs
and I had a gripping pain in my right thigh.
My ankles felt stuck to the bed and I couldn’t close my legs.

I heard a male voice with my ears, not just in my mind but
I couldn’t really make out what the word was that he had said.
It was something like “Julie or Jules” or something, but I heard it.
I started to doze off and I was awakened by a clinking sound.
It sounded like something metal on my headboard. I heard it twice.
I heard it with my ears. My heart raced and my eyes popped open.
I lay there frozen; motionless and terrified. Eventually, I fell asleep.
I had dreams but I don’t remember them now.

I woke up with the distinct sensation that I had been choked.
I feel a dull ache in my neck to the left of my trachea.
It hurts to swallow and when I touch it, but it’s not a sore throat.

I have a hard time sometimes to separate body memories
from actual pain unrelated to flashbacks, triggers or memories.
They all hurt and they all feel real.
Usually though, once I identify that it is a body memory, it goes away.
A couple of times over the past few weeks I have been alarmed by a clear feeling that someone is squeezing my upper right arm.
It’s real and it hurts.
I knew immediately that this was a body memory and it went away fairly quickly.
This has happened two, maybe three times over the past few weeks.
I believe that not only was I restrained probably with handcuffs,
but I think I was either choked or held down by my throat.

I woke up early, sometime before six o’clock, and I lay in bed and prayed.
I went to “the attic” briefly.
One thing I noticed is that I think there are “garment bags” hanging
on one side and I feel that someone or more than one
someone is hiding behind or inside of them.
I wonder if it’s my bigger, older parts.
Some of my parts aren’t afraid and have come out a lot over the years.
Where are they? Why don’t I see them when I go there?
If they aren’t afraid, then why don’t they come out?
The wee ones that hide under the eaves seem afraid.
Jersey girl, (the scrapper), miss showmanship, (the great entertainer),
and the sexy one aren’t afraid.
Where are they?
Who else is in there?

Monday, July 4, 2011

"Taking the Trigger Train to Crazy Town!"

I woke up this morning feeling good. Hubby has the day off,
the sun is finally shining.
The coffee was already made when I got up...
A great start to this Independence Day!

Last night, our 20 year old son was supposed to have loaded the dishwasher, (with mostly all his own dirty dishes), but instead he fell asleep on the couch. Before I went to bed, I woke him up to send him to bed and tell him to get up early in the morning and get them done.

Today, when I got up, my son was still asleep in his bed.
I came downstairs, got my coffee and came in to see my husband,
when I noticed that he had done the dishes himself.
I was so mad!
My husband is always so nice; he’s a very thoughtful man. Unfortunately,
he enables our son and we fight about that more than anything else.

I went to the landing of the stairs and hollered up to our son to get up.
I scolded him for not getting up early to do the dishes as he had said he would.
He made a wise remark and I reacted by hollering
at him to get out of bed and contribute something to the house.
He made a wise crack and then I really yelled! 

I came out to the sunporch and reamed out my husband.
I began to feel some familiar feelings from my childhood
that have repeated into my adult life.
I felt disregarded and unheard.
I could feel something escalating inside and I fought against it at first,
trying to communicate my feelings in a controlled, adult way.

The next thing I know I'm SCREAMING at my husband to "Do something!"
"Don’t just stand there, do something!" Of course, he just stood there...
I’m sure he was stunned!
It began with one good shove; then I hit him. Then, all hell broke loose.
I started wailing on him as hard as I could with both fists.
I hit him over and over again, screaming
at him. I kept telling him how much I hate him. 

Neither one of us is violent and hardly ever even yell or anything.
He was stunned, teary eyed standing there letting me pound and pummel him.
I don't remember some parts of it but suddenly, I came to the realization
that none of this had anything to do with my husband.
I don't hate him-I adore him.
Although I realized that the rage was misdirected, I still couldn't stop.
I continued the raging and punching and screaming.
I just kept screaming over and over, "Goddamn it! Goddamn it! Goddamn it!" 

Then I turned it on myself and pulled my hair and began to punch myself
in the head. I was like a crazy woman!
Then I just screamed but no words-just screaming and crying.
My husband stopped me, held me by my wrists and hugged me tight to keep me from hurting myself.
I fought until I was exhausted.
He tried to get me to sit down, but I resisted and then came ‘round two’ of the screaming and more crying. I backed away from him and cried some more. He just stood there until I calmed down. I kept saying, "I'm sorry" over and over. He held me for a long time.

By then I wanted to sit down because I was shaking and exhausted.
I sat and put my head on his belly while he stood beside me,
holding me for a long time.
To some, my husband standing there allowing me to unleash on him
might seem like weakness,
but let me tell you, he showed such strength and compassion in that moment.
Don is my rock and my safety.
Almost like he’s magic, Don has a calming affect on me.

Then he said, as if to lighten to mood,
"If I'm ever involved in a brawl, I want you on my team!" 
He always knows what to say to make me feel better.

Other than some tired, achey muscles, a really sore hand, a sore throat
and pulling out some hair, I'm OK now.
I keep sighing. I feel relieved and exhausted.
This feels as if it came out of nowhere
and although, I'm a bit embarrassed, I’m grateful.
I'm grateful for my husband and for getting rid of some of that rage
that I’ve carried around for over forty years.
My husband helped me explain triggers and flashbacks to our son,
so it turned out to be a good opportunity for bonding and healing
and I am also grateful for that!