Journal Date: Saturday, November 7th, 2020
It’s still hard for me know what’s real. I’m always too quickly inclined to blame it on myself, or to assume that I’m just overreacting.
I don’t think that’s actually the case in this situation right now.
And now that I’m looking back on my childhood with different eyes, I’m starting to think I wasn’t actually overreacting then, either.
I was having all of these intensely negative emotional reactions to intensely negative life experiences. Things really were that bad. I wasn’t wrong to be deeply upset by what was happening to me. My feelings were perfectly appropriate to the difficult and extremely painful situation I was in.
I only learned to distrust and deny myself because of what the rest of my family demanded I accept. The gaslighting that went on cut me off from any sense of knowing what was right or wrong.
I had no clue how to feel or react; no matter what I did, I somehow found that I was always wrong, again.
And it wasn’t just what I did that was wrong—it was me, I was wrong.
Fundamental bad, fucked up, broken, unworthy and unloveable, or as my mom often told me then, “hopeless” and a “lost cause.”
This was probably the worst part of it all.
My distrust, denial, and even disgust with myself.
It got me into so many stupid situations that I had no place being in, that were re-traumatizing and perpetuated the same despair I’d always felt.
“Here’s one of the more unusual and problem-creating symptoms that can be developed from unresolved trauma: the compulsion to repeat the actions that caused the problem in the first place. We are inextricably drawn into situations that replicate the original trauma in both obvious and less obvious ways.” —from Healing Trauma by Peter Levine
How can I liberate myself from this now?
How can I call this part of my soul back from where I lost it so long ago?
I don’t know how yet. But I know I’m willing to try.