Going to warn you again. This contains triggers and you have a choice about whether to read it or not. If you are a teenager or a child it is most important that you understand that this is written to to explore a sense of overcoming obstacles and not drowning in the crap that life chucks at you. Because life does that, and sometimes its tough to see a way out, especially when you are young and have much to learn.
So I’ve been thinking long and hard about this….. its tough to write but I think I have reached a point where I need to say what has been going on with me of late.
So again I going to warn you before you go any further that this will contain triggers. You may well think I am wrong to write it publicly but I have warned you and you can turn around now. But I need to do this and I have to think about myself first and foremost.
My brain imploded last year due due to all the multiple stresses that I have been through over a long, long period of time.
The stress of bringing up a child on my own, the stress of studying at Higher level for 5 years at the same time as bringing up that beautiful child on my own, the stress of working in an ever changing and incredibly stressful health field, and sadly the stress of holding an unknown secret.
That unknown to me secret, was that to all intents and purpose, that I am now an adult survivor of childhood sexual abuse.
I imagine its tough to read. it’s hard to believe at times. It’s tough to write it. Even tougher to have lived it. But it is what it is.
Not going to tell you any more than that, because you don’t need to know it and I don’t need to tell you.
But you know what? I am looking at my life and looking at what I have managed to do in spite of it. It turns out it is not unusual for women of my age who have experienced this kind of thing to unravel later in life. Its like having a huge piece of a jigsaw put into place. Once it is there everything becomes so much clearer. I find myself thinking ‘goodness me, that is so obvious now’ about all kinds of things.
I have cried a lot as I have come to terms with what had happened to me, it has truthfully broken my heart and smashed all of me into tiny pieces. Everything that I understood about myself, everything I treasured in my life is all up for scrutiny now. This is clearly an ongoing process but I am now very much in the process of gathering all of me back together.
Of late, I have made myself laugh by watching my own reactions to events past and present. Back when I was 21 years old and life all got a bit to much for me, I unravelled slightly and my GP sent me to a locally newly created Community Mental Health Centre where I attended a relaxation course. The first thing I noticed when I did this was my reaction of ‘oh my goodness these people are so much worse than I am’, and I have done exactly the same thing recently when I recently joined an abuse survivors website. And from this I find myself needing to acknowledge that I have a problem in being defined as being broken. I know I am lucky that I was able to escape and that I had a family that encouraged me in so many ways, who loved and supported me. At this point I have no idea who knew what or if they knew nothing of what went on. Not sure if I am ever going to have the answers to those questions. So I feel I need to make my own peace.
The second thing that happened back then was that it planted the seed of training to my chosen career, it took a while to get there because of life’s twists and turns but I graduated back in the early 2000’s and I am now a qualified health professional. And because of this I am able to help others in helping themselves overcome disability, and all other events, that stop people from functioning properly. And lets be clear in doing this, I very much help myself. I gain so much by helping others. It is what is called in negotiation language a win/win situation. I am not going to apologise for that, it is this thinking and feeling that motivates many people into such a profession, that is probably why it is considered a vocation.
So regardless of what has happened in the past, I chose not to stay broken by it, to not be defined by it. I remain as ever a warrior of a woman, I will always be a defender of the weak, of people, of all animal species, of the environment. I will never stop questioning why those with the power to stop injustice choose not to, why such people are happy to exploit the perceived and actual weaknesses in others.
That is what defines me. Kindness and compassion. Along with beauty and happiness. 🙂