self care

I am sorry you are suffering

But I am too

And at the moment I do not have the energy to give

To anyone else

I know in my own life

The Trojan way

In the end led to more damage and heartbreak

And there is a time

We just cannot be

There for anyone else

I am sorry you suffered trauma too

But I am full to the brim with my own battles

And trying my best life peacefully within my own skin

As well as the many crosses I have been given to bear

So forgive me if I say

At this time

It hurts to know you are in pain

But right now

I really must

Take care of myself

A huge ordeal

I went into the dark trauma zone again after yesterday’s tooth removal. It was such an ordeal but I breathed my way through the needles, they were pulling and rocking my head around for over 50 minutes trying to extract the deeply implanted tooth that had 3 roots. My face is still very swollen. When I got home I didn’t know how I was going to manage the pain or the fact that just as I find my feet something comes along to try and knock me down again. I just lay on the kitchen floor crying to the depths of my soul yesterday afternoon, but I did manage to get Jasper out for a very quick run around the oval yesterday and then got some things for a soft dinner which was so hard to eat with that tooth missing and bleeding.

There is light though, My sister has been amazing and contacting me all the time, I am crying while writing this. Its with a kind of relief I can now love my sister, despite our struggles in the past. I honestly don’t know how I would have coped without her support even though I could only cry in pain through a couple of our conversations.

Chahir was absolutely no support at all. When I message him to say I was in pain he didn’t even reply. I could gloss it over but it hurt me a lot. At times he has told me he cannot cope with my trauma or sadness. I cannot go through this again, although I know no one can help me and these kind of tough things I have to endure, I need a partner I feel I can honestly rely on. Not one who is going to flake on me when the going gets tough. I am sick of not holding out for what I TRULY need. I would rather just be on my own with Jasper.

Anyway today was tough going too but I managed a lovely walk to the lake with Jasper and that cheered me up then we went to the arcade café for a coffee and I broke a water glass. I got some supplies for dinner and I have it in the oven now. I told myself when I got home I do not need to rush to eat, I am trying to temper myself more these days and practice self soothing. It seemed to work even when I was feeling last night and today I absolutely cannot cope with more of this kind of pain, I really was at my limit, that said something carries me through. That brief 40 minutes in nature walking and then sitting by the weeping willows helped me.

Sometimes I continue to blame myself for all of this. I think that maybe if I did not rush off overseas and sustain a head injury a year after losing Jonathan I never would have had to go through all of this with my teeth now. But then I realise I would have had to be a different person not to make that choice and I feared relying and asking for help. I still do. Its very hard for me to admit my vulnerable side and sometimes I fear that marks me out as a passive aggressive narcissist. Not always being able to ask for things directly and fully own my vulnerabilities, but then I am probably being a bit too tough on myself. My left cheek is still swollen up like a balloon. I try not to exercise worrying thoughts. I wasn’t given any antibiotics so I hope its not infected, I had to have one suture which the dentist said will drop out in time

So that is where tonight finds me, a bit sore and sorry but alive and grateful for a nice summer evening. Somehow I survived yet another blow or Saturnian experience and am still alive to speak of it even though today life felt so very, very dark again.

Facing my fear ; today's reflections on childhood trauma

I have to face a big dental procedure in around an hour. One of my back teeth needs to be removed as it had a crown and they removed it a short while ago to find decay. I had to make a choice, go through referral to another specialist who would put a crown on it again and possibly lose it further down the track or have it taken out. That’s all well and good but I wear denture now, as I am missing the three front teeth and this tooth is quite wide so when it comes out its going to affect the wearing of my denture. I really had to stay with and listen to my fearful self this morning and then my angry self got triggered as a lot of this started with Mum deciding I needed braces to correct, what to me, don’t look like badly bucked teeth, and as some of you know I have had substantial head trauma and having dental is a feat of endurance with my PTSD. I honestly felt like pulling the pin on it yesterday but I texted to confirm as I know I have to face up to it at some stage and its better to get it done, a very loving and firm but comforting adult presence showed up for me today to listen to the fear but not allow to block my necessary action for better health.

I feel emotional now just being able to pour all of this out here, earlier on I was so angry and crying about all I went through as a child and at the hands of my mother, later in life she admitted to my niece in law that she wasn’t a good parent and struggled to help me with my sensitivity, it all came up in therapy yesterday and I am sorry to write this, but sometimes I just wish she had aborted me and maybe its why I have had six termination of pregnancy myself in my life. Mum and Dad were not equipped to care for my needs or feelings growing up and I am not going to deny it any more, just to make myself wrong. I am sick of copping the shit for something I didn’t choose, ie to bring a child into the world who was an ‘accident.’

Now I have got that all of my chest I can admit that I know I have a right to be here. I have a purpose and that is to honest about the impact of my emotional neglect. I wont hold onto any anger with my parents as that will only end up hurting me, I want to both acknowledged it and let it go.. they honestly did the best they could but I got less than any of my other siblings and most especially my brother who was so bonded and close to Dad, he could never in a million years know what it was to grow up as the youngest, that said I know he carries things and struggles too at times with self care and often overdoes it with his body.

The fact is I was born into a crushing culture where the inner feminine was under substantial threat. I am so enjoying Alan Cummings autobiography where he speaks of his relationship with his grandmother saying that while the rest of the family laughed at him and put him down, or devalued him, she always loved and supported him for who he was and allowed him to be silly and have fun. I want to share that particular part of his book in a blog post soon. When she died he and his partner go and jump up and down on the suspension bridge close to where she lived in memory of when she did this with Alan and his brother Tom.

Sadly, I had no loving grandparent. My older sister let me have fun but there was alcohol involved and after defending my sister for years I also know she struggled not to have her own creativity repressed and often over did things. But she also had a sense of fun and life and spontenatiy that my far older parents repressed, not that it wasn’t there, its just we did stuff they thought was fun but was boring and deadly and hurt me and was no fun for me. I got injured on several holidays due to their own neglect or carelessness. The one happy memory I have of coast trips was riding the Cha Cha at the fair with my Dad or playing patience, but that came with Dad’s own serious sense of solitariness and self focus.

I remember my past partner saying to his family how joyless it was living with me as a partner, because of my past I had so many fears and such suppressed anger and he also showed no interest in what interested me, putting down my interest in astrology and psychology. I stuck with him putting my emotions down and devaluing me for so many years and then blamed myself for our break up and for sure my history played a part but at that stage I was trying my hardest to address it.

Anyway I am forcing myself to eat some lunch before this procedure. I need to leave in 15 minutes and I haven’t walked Jasper yet and at the moment he is looking at me beseechingly knowing something is up. I stopped while writing this a while ago and burst into tears giving his ears a tickle, the most fun I have is with him, in our free, unbridled moments when we touch base with free movement on our walks and I gain joy in seeing him run full throttle through a green field with his ears flying. I think I have been a good dog Mum despite the fact Dad always told me I didn’t have what it takes to care for a pet. Only ever got put down, not encouraged and that kind of treatment left a lasting legacy deep inside of me. In therapy yesterday Kat said its no wonder I struggle to know what I truly want and to let myself have joy and good things, I just never got helped to find the way to embrace myself…. so at age 57 I am now having to learn how to do that more myself, for I no longer want this joyless legacy of guilt and sadness and misplaced obligation for family karma to possess my waking moments. Surely it is time to enjoy life once I recuperate from the upcoming dental surgery.

Softly fall

Softly fall

Love

Like the rain shower

Gentle and quiet

Let those souls who suffer

In a barren wilderness

Know

That there is more than just this

Aloneness and suffering

Be the blessing that reminds

The hurting soul that strives

Of the reason it needs to stay alive

That we are loved

And seen from afar

By the one who understands and knows

How this very soul

Answered the call of life

Even as it feared the almost complete

Extinction of the light

Just a little rain

Just a little rain

Restores my hope in life again

Brings release after pain

Restoring a sense of nature’s blessing

And even though these sudden showers that fell

Tell a tale of extremes

Still they are so welcome here

There is a comfort in the heavy skies

And a lilt of joy

In thundering noises that roll

And swell

And rumble on by

Leaving a landscape

Renewed

In hues of deepening green

As dusk scatters it dusting of dark

Bidding our weary souls to slow and rest

Where on earth would we be

Without this force of nature

That rises and swells

We can never tell the why and how of it

And yet

Here amidst the storm and showers

As some take shelter under drooping bowers

Somewhere deep inside

Our beings come back alive

With the falling of

Just a little shower

Who you are

Who you are

Comes from afar

And yet lives as close to you

As your breath

Isn’t it surprising

That this depth of experience

Surrounds you

For who you are

Embraces far more than the mind

And when the wave of vibration

That is you

Begins to move

Then it is that you feel your soul to be

Dancing in perfect harmony

With all of creation

For this soul note is you

And it is free

And there is so much more to you

Than any single human eye

Could ever see

Deepening into soul : today's reflections

Soul is already present in all that exists.

I am a container of soul energy, as much as the sun, the leaves and the flowers. I, too, grow and express life.

Tian Dayton

The soul in us is the part that feels deeply and connect us to life. It is the part that can see beyond the appearances, it understands the hidden nuances and inner value of things as well as connecting us to feelings associated with archetypal fields, emotions and experiences such as the longing for love, identity, self definition or deep connection with parents or other living as part of our soul family.

I have loved and drawn rich meaning and comfort from the psychology of Jung for so long as he seemed to grant soul a place in psychology (which he called the logos of soul) and when I first got sober I was drawn to therapist James Hillman’s idea of the Soul’s Code or the sense that it is the soul in us which takes us deeper into a state of individuality and grace than pure spiritual seeking alone. When we consider our inner lives from the perspective of soul we can find all kinds of meanings for what we endure in this life. Last night I read a wonderful quote from a Buddhist teacher that spoke about marrying the depth of our soul to the light of spirit on our way through life.

Earlier today I felt a big pull into soul. I went to hang out some washing on the dryer in the spare room where I keep some of my Mum’s possessions since she died a few years ago. I looked over in the corner where a black bag my Mum used a lot was sitting and I must honestly say, I experienced a wave of aversion. I thought of Mary Poppins being prim and prissy and how this black bag was just the kind of bag she would probably carry. My first thought was how I now feel like I want to be rid of it because earlier on I had been resenting the family madness and dysfunction that I seemed to have got caught up in when coming back to my home town around 9 years ago. Now that my sister is on the upswing from her recent depressive breakdowns, happy as I am for her I also feel all the angst of what I got put through when she attempted suicide in 2013 as well as going through what others have labelled ‘manic’ episodes which may actually have been something else, just a way of her own soul trying to find a way to live in the aftermath of her own past trauma, losses, while undergoing her own midlife crisis of emergence.

I went over to the bag and opened it and took out some of the contents, a small packet of tissues : Mum always carried these. A modern red wooden necklace her best friend got repaired while she was ill the last time and a large wallet with my father’s three initials JAF engraved on it in gold. I looked inside the wallet to find an itinerary for the trip my Mum took to visit my ex husband and I in the UK in 2001… In fact that year Mum and I both ended up traveling to Holland to visit my Dad’s second sister and we were there having breakfast on the day the Twin Towers collapsed due to a terrorist attack on September 11.

I immediately started crying, remembering how Mum arrived all alone (just as she did a year after Dad died when she came over to spend a month with my best friend and I who were, at that time living in Chelsea in London). She was back in the land of our ancestors and I thought with fondness of the time she spent with my husband’s mother but I also realised after shedding all the tears that at that point I was only just beginning to undergo sychological separation…. so so much pain in our family and so so much trauma… so so much yet to live through, too in terms of illness, suffering and two deaths as well as the ending of my marriage which caused my Mum pain.

Today I was thinking about the last poetry post I posted on leaving sadness behind, I thought of how sadness is the energy that really does deepen us into our soul and true self in many ways, but sadly as a culture we get all kinds of messages about what is and is not acceptable as far as feeling and expressing sadness. I am also remembering while writing this that addiction recovery writer John Bradshaw reminds us how essential grief work is to healing and reclaiming a strong and valuable relationship with our the full reality of our past as well as our inner child. And it seems to me that the child in us in the most soulful part of us, it is the part that opens and is not yet closed, that asks questions and shows a natural awe and curiosity, knowing life is full of mystery and yet seeking answers and wisdom. And it is the part of us that just feels what it feels, knows what it knows and sees what it sees, at least until the time when this part of us gets shut down and we really suffer a form of soul loss. Its not really our sadness or other feelings that are a problem, it when we dont allow ourselves to move through them and let them flow and instead block up our flow by damming it up into never ending grief. And it also seems to me that the child in us is also so often related to intuitive knowing.

Sadly trust in this part of us can sometimes get lost and yet this part of us always lives on and tries to get our attention. It tries to show us where things which are making us sad are not doing good things to our heart and then sadly we are often told to over ride these as well. It made me cry this morning to realise what I got caught up in, in terms of my family dysfunction and trauma for the past 9 years. In many ways this house I live in is a symptom of it, as my sister had been involuntarily committed around the same time Mum forced my hand on it at the auction in December 2011 and my second sister made an attempt on her life only two years later. The next year saw the death of my older sister and my own struggles to separate and find a good solid Jungian based therapist.

And yet I also love this house, even though at times it feels like a prison. I think I am going to stay here and not move to the new place although so often I associate it to the overwhelm not only of my own traumatic life but that of my entire ancestral inheritance. But it makes sense and things are working out. The last eclipse involved the Cancer energy of the maternal inheritance as well as relating to my own experience of the inner child and being the baby in a far older more materially oriented family so its only natural at this point I am getting a long range eagle eye view into a past I had to travel this far down the road to see even more clearly.

At the same time there is also such a huge part of me that wants to let go of it all now. To not be as surrounded by those possessions of my Mum’s that act as triggers to pull me back. The truth is Mum is gone now and I don’t want to keep being pulled back to what is passed. I know it will always live inside me but for now I want to live in a far less barren place. Comforting as it can be at times to deepen into nostalgia or sadness for what has passed, these days I would rather just acknowledge it and move on.

I love the words of the promises in AA. Happy, joyous and free. In the 12 step programme the fruits of doing a review and inventory of your past is that you get to address it and move forward, there are words in the Big Book that say. “We will not regret the past, nor need to close the door on it.” And perhaps, in the end, regrets are a waste of time because at the time we chose to do something we regret, we obviously thought it was for the best.

I look back to 2001 now and remember that coincided not only with 9/11 but the Saturn Pluto opposition as well. At that time I started to feel a pull back to Australia while my husband and I were trying our best to build a life away from family in the UK. The past 19 years have been spent being pulled back in, in many ways, in being there for my sister and Mum’s last years and for those hospitalisations of my other sister which followed on from Mum’s relatively sudden death back in 2017. My living sister seems to be doing better now. She is more positive, more engaged with her grandchildren and even ringing and talking to me more frequently. I know its not her fault, a lot of what went down between us after Jonathan left me but at times she was pretty split off from the emotional side or even knowing at that point what it was like to have a marriage end and have as much inter-relational and personal trauma as I had had up to that point and then to be sober and trying to deal with feelings from the past.

Going to the coast in three weeks will hopefully bring a healing for us. As it was from the time we started to use that house as a family in 1978 after Dad and Gary completed building it, that much of our traumas hit. For me the smashed up teenager is now an adult. That trauma and accident was to repeat on the run from family who really struggled to know how to help me in the painful aftermath of my broken marriage. They didn’t really know how to ‘hold’ me and my feelings, simply because they struggled with their own. That does not make them wrong or bad. And in the end my own soul journey had to be taken alone, could not find a place of understanding or acceptance within a family where emotional recovery was not considered a possibility at all.

Sad as it is, as the youngest child I had to bear the brunt of more. I saw so clearly today that I was born at a time of collective shattering. The 60s saw the advent of so much change and so much turmoil within the balance of masculine and feminine energies as well as other traumas, challenges and life changes that have an impact for us all as a collective. My experiences of trauma and near death just marked me out for an inward soul path and I am beginning to see lately its not a sign of failure I never found a way out into a dying world I felt, in so many ways, I just did not belong to. In fact it was and is a sign of strength that I could pull close to the inner life and understand that what I suffered was a condition of soul rupture with widely collective themes.

For me, my times of greatest peace come when I connect to the soul. I can draw comfort from the fact that every memory connects me to a puzzle piece of my own journey of reclamation and that as the continuation of cells within cells within cells of an ongoing evolutionary journey of humanity every single experience and feeling on a soul level belongs, has meaning and makes sense. For I am a spiritual being having a human experience and I am also a soul growing, morphing and learning with each single step and so called ‘mistake’ I make on this journey of life. One thing I know for sure is this, as long as I stay closely connected to the soul in me and my ancestors I can never be truly lost, but at the same time I must not be limited from finding either, those spiritual wings which allow me to fly free and above it all like an eagle soaring, when the pull or longing of Happy, Joyous and Free, calls upon me.

Welcome rain

It was a relief to finally hear drops of rain falling outside around 9.30 pm last night… I just wanted to mention that as I am writing this thunder is rumbling overhead and welcome rain has been falling in the south of Australia. The road to the south coast was also reopened earlier in the week . The heat of the bushfires is cooling and I know many, many people overseas and in Australia have been praying for rain for us. The welcome outpouring of support for the bushfire victims and fire fighters has been so appreciated and shows how much love comes out of a disaster. So this is a thank you to everyone who expressed concern and support here on my blog 0ver the past few weeks. It certainly was a challenging start to 2020. I am enjoying the sense of dark pregnant swollenness that comes with foreboding rain this afternoon. There is no sun, only a lot of cloud but its certainly welcome. I got busy planting up a few purple verbena plants after a visit to the nursery with Jasper earlier. Its also such a relief to have some release from the intense pressure of the heat that dogged us recently as temperatures were feeling unbearable but this last spate of intense heat is sadly a sign of things to come, which makes any rain feel all the more welcome.

Free of sorrow

Sometimes the truth dawns on me

That I have lived far too long in sorrow

Hurts that may not have come

Had I not tried so hard

To fix what was

Beyond repair

And I have leaned

Sometimes it simply costs

Too much to care

And keep throwing your empathy

Down an empty well

So now

After so many years

Of shedding tears

Let me seek the path

To happiness

For I am growing tired of sorrow

And you showed me another way

That leads to something better

So come whatever weather

Its is your company I will keep

It is close to your heart

That I will seek

To live

Finding a means of being

Freer of this

My heavy burden

Of sorrow

To walk away

To walk away does not mean you failed

Only that you are tired of trying

And placing your energy

Into fruitless or used up places

Leaving is not always a defeat

For sometimes it just takes

Wisdom and strength to surrender

To truths your ego may rather not face

And I have heard it said

That what is truly meant for us

Will not leave

And will always find a way to us

And we may never get to open up the space

For its arrival

Until we find the courage

To walk away

From what aches