Monthly Archives: February 2016

Til It Happens to You…

I will say that I haven’t listened to much from Lady Gaga, and I can’t say whether I’m a fan.  However, the song that she wrote with Diane Warren and sang at the Oscars was incredibly moving.  When sexual assaults survivors walked out on the stage during the song, it gave hope to many and courage to stand up for yourself.  Well Done!

Click on the song title:

Til It Happens to You

 

Advertisements

Lost

You know that feeling deep inside that you have misplaced or lost something?  I have felt that this week, but couldn’t put my finger on what was happening.  I had some major triggering events happen, unexpectedly during that time, which didn’t help. Then on Friday I learned that the most recent part we have been working with, left.

By left, I mean she wrote a note saying she needed to go away for awhile.  What?? I know that parts don’t die or disappear forever, but going away.  We were so close to getting through her things.  It makes me sad, and confused, and wondering if I pushed her too hard.  This has never happened before, and I hate it.

What do I do?  I have been so triggered lately and then losing her at the same time has pushed me into isolation.  I don’t want to leave the house, go to work, bible study or therapy.  I actually have canceled all those things…but what if that was a mistake too.

I feel like those little ones and my other teenager, on the inside, need to go to talk, but I’m afraid.  Not really even sure of what.

Hello, from the inside…

Today seems to be another day of nausea and wondering.  Wondering how it is that most of the week I’ve felt sick to my stomach, and if it has do with drinking?? The not knowing things about what happens to me, wears me out!  And am I drinking?  Is this a constant hangover that is never ending? Hmmmmm, just wondering…52d24db82368e8a5b865c83a202bde28

I also wonder and hate having to go through photo albums and journals to find out about my past, my life, what took place, things that happened, which I don’t/can’t remember!  This seems so unfair and at times exhausting.  When I don’t sleep well, I lay in bed and wonder…. what is really happening, is this stuff for real, can I even trust myself and the things I hear? Are these memories real?

 

 

 

 

“Search and Rescue”

Friday therapy was not what I had planned or expected, but generally, therapy never goes as I have planned.  One of the many things I love about my therapist is that we don’t always go with the obvious.  God always directs the sessions, she follows that lead, and it is always the best thing…even though it seems unexpected.  Don’t get me wrong, most times she has a plan, but we trust when God shows her/us a different path.

We thought we would discuss the harmful behaviors that my teenage part, Kat has been exhibiting.  The drinking, smoking and cutting seem to be at the forefront.  The bulimia isn’t as bad right now, and I’m so thankful.  I usually feel the after affects of the drinking and smoking.  I don’t know when it happens, I’m usually nauseated  and have a headache. It’s still so strange to me that this happens, and I’m unaware. I hope she can find ways to cope other than doing these things.

Friday, however, was dominated by another teenage part, I’ll call B.  She is our system protector, bad ass, leader, and very direct. She hates to “talk” about her abuse, and the part she played in protecting me from an abusive relationship I had in and out of college. She works well with D (my therapist), they have mutual respect for each other, and a unique friendship. D depends on B to fill her in if my community is struggling on the inside.  She is loyal and honest, but won’t say things that aren’t “her place” to say.

She and I have been experiencing some pain (body memories) because of an upcoming anniversary date of abuse.  I hate that these are difficult times of the year for my parts.  I know as we go through therapy and as the years pass, they will be easier.  Although this memory was discussed prior to Friday, it was a place B was stuck.  She told D that God promised to provide a way out, when we experience difficulty.  D said that He also said we must go through things to get to the other side of the healing.

As she shared about the memory, we realized that she literally felt stuck there, and felt as though she couldn’t get out.  D has done, what I call, “search and rescue” with my younger parts.  When they have shared their stories of abuse, they always feel like it is still happening in real time.  D always reminds them, they are not there, and are safe.  Several times as they share, she tells them she is coming to get them out, to take her hand, and they will never return again.  It’s an amazing thing to listen and be a part of, I don’t always get to “participate” though.  When I do, it is difficult for me to hear, because really, that was me.  I learn to have compassion for them and then for myself later on.

Anyway, Friday turned into sharing a painful memory, horrific events of abuse, and needing to be rescued from that event. D came in, searched for B, and she walked her “through the house to find her”, when D got there, she had words for my abuser, put her arm around B, and rescued her from that stuck place.  She tried so hard to be strong and tough, like usual, but it was too much to endure.  Here is where I feel like having a therapist that gets what needs to happen, is so important with DID. She isn’t afraid to get on the floor, or sit beside, sing a song, pray, swear, hug, color, hold onto, or whatever it takes and then model healthy relationships, not only for me, but my parts.

Of course, who doesn’t want their mom in times like this…but that isn’t possible for me.  I grieve it many, many times.  I know it is something I will never have, and it pisses me off, but God does provide other’s in my life to nurture, support and love me.  My amazing husband, sons, my 3 closest friends and even my therapist. It is all learning healthy attachments.  Not easy in the beginning to trust someone with all this, but I am blessed to have D modeling what it should have looked like and how I can become healthy in that area.

Some day when this therapy thing is over…I would love to have coffee with D and talk about life events, she is so wise, kind, spirit-filled and fun. That isn’t going to happen now, but maybe someday.  I’m 46 years old, I wish I had things I don’t, can’t, and won’t, but I can have others in my life, that God has so graciously given me instead.  I know many with DID, PTSD or trauma related issues have unhealthy attachments with their therapist.  I’m thankful that I don’t have that, I’m sure in the beginning it was a normal feeling.  I read some research that said 98% of those of us without a nurturing, loving, and caring parent, find ourselves struggling with these attachment issues with our therapist. Especially if she is female and we didn’t have a mother figure. D has set healthy boundaries for a working therapeutic relationship, she has encouraged friendships with my parts, and has helped me be a mother figure to them. I’m not good at it but she models how healthy relationships look and work.

The plain and simple truth is, only God, and Him alone, can and will fill the painful hole that is left by a missing parent, in my case, my mom.  He provides for us, if we ask, and He will give us immeasurably more than we could ever ask or dare imagine.  He did it for me, and He can do it for you!

My therapy ended with a nap in the vacant office, and a major cry.  Both were needed and necessary.  And today, I feel like we had a huge step forward, a win for the team, and peace.

Quotation-S-Kelley-Harrell-support-healing-Meetville-Quotes-208416-11e3ddbe59575ab96716ab53f8123ce84

Well, dang!

Yesterday was therapy, and I am beginning to wonder if I’m ever going to have a normal Tuesday therapy day?? Geesh, it’s like everyone on the inside are planning some type of coup d’état.  Actually it’s more like one in particular, but difficult nonetheless.

Got up at 5am, ran my 5.5 miles with my friend, drank some coffee, showered, and headed off to BSF. The week before, I was triggered during the bible study small group time.  We are studying Revelation and the lesson the past 2 weeks has been on suffering….ugh!  I understand that all too well.  However, it has been very helpful to understand that we live in a fallen world, full of sin, and that pain and suffering are going to be apart of it all.  God allows suffering, but will not give us more than we can handle with HIS help.

Anyway, last week the lady next to me, I swear, out of nowhere, says, “I wonder if mental illness is from Satan.”  What?!?!  This began the following dialogue in my head from anger to sadness/tears:

Anger:  Is she crazy?  How does she know I have a mental illness?  Why did she just say that?  Did she say that on purpose? What the f……!

Sadness:  Oh my gosh, I am from Satan.  Why would she hurt me like that?  Does everyone in here know I have DID?  I am a horribly bad person.  I can never come back here. 

The good thing was I had therapy a few hours after that.  My therapist, who also attends the same BSF, just not in my small group, had a different take on the whole thing….of course she did, right? LOL  She suggested that I look at why mental illness, in my case DID, occurs.  I was sexually, physically and emotionally abused for many years, and abuse is pure evil, it is from Satan.  My abusers acted with evil intentions to purposely harm me, and as a result, God saved me through dissociating those horrible events.

She wasn’t letting the lady off the hook, but simply giving me another way to look at it all. Perhaps she has some experience with mental illness, who knows, but for me it was a huge trigger.  There is always something to learn from being triggered, since there is no way to protect yourself at all times, we need to learn from them.

With all that said, I’m sure I was on high alert when arriving yesterday to my small group. And that would explain the drinking and smoking afterwards.  Going to therapy sick and not knowing what happened before getting there.  I hate when this happens because it means a part is coping and not dealing with present issues.  It puts us all at risk for so many problems….and I need to find a way to communicate that with her.  This is dangerous!

To make matters worse, I decided to go home instead of going to work, I took an anti-nausea pill and then a valium.  I hadn’t slept well in several days, was sick and wanted to go to sleep.  So today, I’m obviously suffering from a hangover, but learned that mixing alcohol and valium is one of the most dangerous combinations of drugs.  I had no idea, since I wasn’t aware of how much alcohol was consumed. Thankful for a God that has protected me from so many dangerous situations.

So, I’m hitting the Restart Button, going to have a conversation with this part, and moving forward…

restart-button_slider1

He uses every hurt, nothing is wasted!

I have not been on to blog for a few days, not sure why, but maybe I simply get tired of the same cycle.  Although there has been significant progress in many areas, I’m grateful for the answers to prayers, and the help I’m receiving, it is easy to find myself feeling alone and broken.

How can I fix this?  I can’t share information until I fix it first. If I could only figure out why this is happening, or why I am feeling this way.  What can I do to make it stop?  I should be able to do something.  I need to get it together, then I can move forward.  What if I never feel right again?

All those statements/questions burn through my mind on a daily basis, and yet the answer will always remain the same.  It’s NOT about me doing anything, because I can’t fix it. It’s about what God is doing IN and THROUGH me.  Only He knows the answers to my questions, the truth behind the statements, and His answers will come in His time. They will be for my good, and His purpose.

But….I hate the pain and suffering!  God doesn’t promise we won’t feel pain and suffering, ugh!  We live in a world full of sin, and sinful people, driven by sinful nature.  We hurt each other.  We need God!  We need His promises, truths, strength, and Jesus.  We are guaranteed eternal life with Him someday, if we believe in Him, ask for forgiveness and live for Him.  God loved us so much He gave His son, who endured horrible physical, emotional and unthinkable abuse.  Guess what?  He didn’t do anything to deserve it!  Like those of us who have suffered similar abuse; we didn’t do anything to deserve it either.  Yet we all need someone to save us…and that someone is Jesus.

He knows exactly how we feel, what we went through, endured, suffered, cried out for, and He wept for us.  He didn’t give us more than we could handle, without His grace and mercy.  So today, if you are struggling, hurting, crying…whatever it is, call out His name and ask Him to save you!  Believe Him, Trust Him, Have Faith in Him, Tell Him what happened, Confess and be Washed White as Snow, and live your life with Him.

You won’t wake up feeling “all better”, “normal” or “someone else”.  You will wake up a new person, the old has gone the new has come.  A fresh start, new beginning, someone to always be there in the difficult times when we have: “to tell our stories”, sleepless nights”, “flashbacks/memories”, “body pains”, “to seek therapy”, “to break addictions”, “loneliness”, “unhealthy attachments”, etc.                                                                                  Jesus will never leave you or abandon you, EVER!  It’s a promise!

I fall down, fail, scream at Him, stop trusting, question Him.  I forget He is my rock, my shield, my comforter, my savior, but He knows it before I ever do any of that, that is what is so great about God’s love, even when we (whatever)…..He loves us!

God uses all the good, bad and ugly in our lives to make us beautiful, if we believe in Him.  He makes beauty out of our ashes. Let Him make you beautiful today!

Isaiah 61:1-3~The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me to bring good news to the suffering and afflicted. He has sent me to comfort the brokenhearted, to announce liberty to captives, and to open the eyes of the blind. He has sent me to tell those who mourn that the time of God’s favor to them has come, and the day of his wrath to their enemies. To all who mourn in Israel he will give: beauty for ashes; joy instead of mourning; praise instead of heaviness. For God has planted them like strong and graceful oaks for his own glory.

 

Tears have ended…finally!

It had been 5 straight days of crying and sadness over heavy memories of sexual abuse at the hands of my parent.  Sometimes it shocks me all over again, and I swirl within to make sense of anything.  Why?  wHy? whY?  Probably never going to get the answer I long for and desperately desire to have.

The harmful behaviors continue to surface, as Kat strives to find those same answers.  I get as a teenager, feelings seem too much to handle, but I really am too old for this. 🙂  The nausea from smoking, drinking, cutting, binging/purging, lack of sleep, migraines….I am ready for things to change.  At the same time, I realize she isn’t going to stop all these behaviors cold turkey.

Then I’m reminded to continue to show grace, love, patience, and perseverance throughout this enormous process, called DID. My therapist repeatedly compliments my patience with this, but some days I feel like I’ve failed myself and all the parts of me.  I know they see me struggle more than ever, see me cry for the first time, and yet they continue to extend grace.  What a blessing and example to follow.  God is genuinely creative, loving, and oh, so, kind as He has made this all available to those of us who endured horrific abuse.  What a precious gift!

I will celebrate dry eyes today…you never know when that will change.  Please know, that I know, crying is good, healthy, and healing.  Sometimes it is the ONLY way we can communicate the pain and suffering or blessings and joy!  Someday, as the scripture says in Revelation 21:4, “He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever.”

 

2 days of tears

After my Friday therapy session, the past 2 days have been emotional.  I have cried on and off since then, at times, I feel so overwhelmed that I can’t stop. Why does this always happen?  I get grief is necessary, but it comes in waves, out of nowhere, and I really can’t explain why.

My therapist sent me a text today, just reading it made me feel emotional. The more honest I was in my responses back, the more emotions, tears, and overwhelming feelings came.  Not even sure why that happened.  She is so encouraging and always reminding me  of God’s goodness, faithfulness, and love for me.  It helps to keep what is going on in perspective to what God has planned for me.  I know I have difficulty accepting kindness from others, because I don’t feel deserving.  But I am learning…

I hope to sleep tonight, that also causes much exhaustion and emotions.  Getting 3 hours or less of sleep a night, whew! It is sad to think I’m getting used to it, but it’s true.  This is one of the reason’s why I try to get up every morning and run.

Friday Therapy

Yesterday was a long session, I was preparing mentally for it all week. I had shared in my previous post about the body memories and how it was affecting us all.  This was what we worked on yesterday.  I knew I needed to be present as Kat shared her trauma,  to hear it, understand it, and love her through it.  She shared hard things, painful memories, and I am so proud of her, she is so brave!

What I’ve learned about myself in all of this, is that each part of me has a story to share, whether it be trauma, abuse, neglect, or anything thing else.  They came for a specific purpose- to help me, and keep me protected.  They need to feel safe, believed and know I’m going to be okay before they share anything.

This process takes a long time, but can take even longer unless you have a therapist who understands, knows what they are doing with DID, and cares about you and your inside parts.  I will say, it is difficult to find someone qualified enough to walk you through the journey, but when you find them….do the work it takes, you are worth being whole and healed!

We made it through the session, crying, wrapped up in a blanket and curled up on the couch…there seems to be comfort in being wrapped in a blanket.  My inner circle of support have started calling it the “Blanket of Vulnerability”.  I am not a fan of vulnerability or sharing my deepest thoughts and emotions, because at a young age- it wasn’t allowed.  I am learning to do it now, it’s painful at times, but oh, so necesssary for healing.

None of this is easy.  No one said it would be. It’s painful and grueling at times. I hate that. I am embracing it. I do my best. I keep fighting.  I stumble and fall.  I get back up.  I hit the restart button.  I know God is with me.  He has gone before me.  He gives me strength. He loves me NO MATTER WHAT HAPPENS! And I am going to be okay, even good!

My hope is in the Lord….my hope of finding healing and wholeness can only come through Him.  I love these quotes from the movie Shawshank Redemption, I know that seems weird, but they have encouraged me many times.

 

 

Good Day

Today is a good day. Nothing to report from therapy yesterday. Most of the time was taken by Cindy, my artist and deep thinker. She spent time talking with my therapist about things that need to come out with my teenage part.

That “perhaps” she hasn’t told the whole truth. Not being forthcoming, is still lying, just FYI. She (therapist) will be doing some backtracking on Friday. 

Feels like things are coming together inside. Very thankful for all the healing that is taking place. Only God can see the things that truly need to happen, so I’m trusting Him in this process.