Saturday, January 17, 2015

10,000 Days Of Distorted Perception

Saturday, January 17, 2015

I feel much better than I did yesterday.  This is the good news for today.  I slept in until almost 10 a.m.  I had thought to go to a Saturday morning yoga class at the YMCA which I enjoy attending.  But last night I made a promise to myself that I would get up when I was ready to get up.  It's important that I keep the promises I make to myself.

The 'bad' news of the day is that I still do not feel that great.  I know it's my sadness and grief.  Hearing the song Runaway Train yesterday morning triggered a torrent of tears to rise up behind my eyes.  Having a restful night of sleep certainly helped me.  But the sadness I felt as a teenager is more omnipresent in my conscious awareness than it has perhaps ever been.  There were many days in which I wanted to run away from home.

Grieving is no small process.  I feel the need to find better resources so I can complete the grieving process.  Looking back it is clear to me that it was my dormant grief that awoke back in June, 2013.  I first had to purge out the anger and rage I was carrying around; they were covering up my grief.  My healing has thus been something like a diving expedition.  As I journey deeper and deeper the nature of what I am discovering is changing.

It would be dishonest of me to claim that I have no anger left to work through.  But what anger I have is a small remnant of what I began working through back in 2013.  My progress has been immense.

I referenced distorted perception in the title of my post today because this distorted perception is part of what I am still grieving.  I didn't completely appreciate just how much the trauma in my early life history had distorted my way of perceiving and relating to the world beyond my own skin and bones until 2013.  Once the horror of what I had long been (unknowingly) enduring began to dawn on me the grief set in virtually immediately.  I initially felt swamped by the grief.  It seems fitting that the physical health issues I had back in the summer of 2013 were specifically focused in my lungs.  It's as if I was drowning in my own sorrow.

It is my impression that a person does not ordinarily work through an immense amount of trauma, pain or grief in a short amount of time.  Healing takes time.  I have repeatedly noted this as I continue to write.  I feel immensely better compared to a year ago.  In fact, last January seems like a strange blur in my psyche.  I remember it was cold, that I was still coping with my immense grief, confusion and sadness and that I was very gradually feeling more and more capable of addressing the entirety of what I was going through.  The shining highlight of that month was my therapist's determination that I was no longer clinically diagnosable for PTSD as of January 28, 2014.  My one year anniversary is approaching!  It's an exciting time to be alive!

There are many times when I catch myself pausing to marvel at the beauty of the world around me.  Wonder, curiosity and an appreciation of beauty are hallmarks of a healthy person.  When these are completely lacking it can be an indicator that something is amiss in a person.  I feel sad to be able to honestly say that curiosity was rarely something I witnessed in my father and his siblings.  I suspect their own life histories would explain why this has essentially always been the case.  It's my impression there is much more trauma in my biological father's family than has ever been consciously and openly acknowledged.  I find that very sad.  But I can choose to leave the sadness behind me.  It is not an easy choice but I can choose nonetheless.

I am grateful to acknowledge that it doesn't necessarily take as long to heal from something as the amount of time you suffered with it.  I carried some amount of unhealed trauma around in my psyche for about thirty years.  There is still more work to do.  But I feel confident I won't still be hammering away at my issues when I am seventy!

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