I went back into a very dark place on the weekend. On Saturday it was as if the pain of my past alcoholic days and all that awful things that went on came to live back inside of me and every nerve of my body felt like it was on fire. This was all triggered by a dinner with friends who were part of that stage of my life. I was in so much pain on Saturday and feeling deeply suicidal again. I think some of it too was prompted by my ‘friend’ asking “So what do you DO all day” and “And does that work?”. That can tap into all the shame a guilt I feel as someone with chronic PTS I wont add the D as I don’t see it as a disorder, but as part of what living and being raised in a trauma inducing world brings to us who are gifted and sensitive, who no longer works or has much outside involvement or engagement in the working world which I decided to check out of over 16 years ago when I saw how dysfunctional it can be. At the same time I also know I was facing very deep sadness over how profound my disconnected or separation from connection has been and how it is a part of being sensitive and having gone through so much trauma that others have not. That became clearer to me after all we shared on Friday night.
There are days and days my socially injected inner critic takes me to task about that and I forget all the time about the necessary inner work my soul has been engaged in over the past 16 years in trying to make sense of and shed the pain of my past or at least learn essential lessons from it. And how realistic would it have been for me to be working and how would I have then dealt with being there for a mother who was sick a sister suicidal and another sister in care? I chose to be there out of love and empathy even though I got so little back. That one is on me to wear. Slowly I am trying to establish a stronger connection with my inner child and be there for her, but it is slow….and does it really matter how much I do in one day or is it in fact more important to maintain a high level of emotional connection within in order to practice self care?
Then I have days like today when I log onto find I have connected with an amazing soul sister from the UK who is also on a healing pathway and who really gets me and I her. I understand that I am actually in a process of waking up and trying to throw off so many shackles. I am also doing the deep work of being real and raw and open in a society in which there is at times so much ignorance, suffering, unconsciousness and pain around and that is when I get faced with the what I do all day questions.
Truth is I would love to be more connected but I need REAL connections these days…..they are slowly coming to me much as my Inner Critic tries to convince me otherwise, I am making progress. The best thing I have in my life is really my blog and blogging community here as here is where I find others who are on a path of conscious work on emotional levels, however its sad that we cannot meet face to face.
In interesting aside on Friday night at the dinner I was sharing with my old friends about the power of the Inner Critic. It isn’t a subject they would ever talk about but on Friday they both admitted to being besieged by criticism as well. Wee then questioned my friends young adult children who said they have not a clue about what an Inner Critic is. “If anything goes wrong I immediately blame someone else”, they both said. “I wouldn’t take it on board if others were always trying to point out my flaws!” We 60s generation were amazed and a bit confounded by this. Not to live with an inner critic or endlessly working over time conscience, how could this be? The next day one of my friends had a bitch about it their lack of care, obviously a raw nerve had been touched!
Anyway I seem to have got a bit off track or not, as the case may be. I felt the comment from my friend perhaps as criticism when it was not, maybe it was just a question of interest. Is there a way taking care of ourselves could become a full time job? Isn’t that important work? At the same time I am not dimissing my inner need for a way to find work or a sense of outer engagement that could give something back and help others. I am just not at that stage yet. My blog is my work, caring for myself and my home and my dog is my work and it gets lonely and hard on the tough days.
On other days I wake up to remind myself that the past is gone now and that I do have a present that isn’t fraught with all that past pain and its draining to have it retriggered I am not longer numbing myself with addictions as I was then, so the rawness is intense. I literally felt every nerve in my body to be on fire on Saturday.
I am now aware after Saturday of the need I have to keep a strong sense of protection around myself, retriggered trauma makes me drained and I need to increase self care regimes after these kind of dark days. If I don’t take care of myself and get into too many situations where I am pulled back into the past the consequence is that I get hollowed out and my life is not nurtured from within. As an empath and sensitive person quiet time is essential to my soul. Without it I suffer and I can get overloaded.
I also need to remember that each day I am moving towards growth or trying too. The tough days still come and they can knock me sideways, but I am always relieved when after those tough days the sun shines again on me in a place where I have understood more and perhaps cleansed more that was formerly unconscious in me from my system. Today I need to celebrate my own life with self nurturing after those days of darkness.