Chasing shadows, tiptoeing farther and farther in to the corners of the rooms of my history, I am sad but not frightened. I know there are monsters here, but I know that the most powerful tool I have is light and only I can deprive myself of that. I can feel my lifeline, tied firmly around my waist and tethered to a string of strong, wise, loving women behind me. I'm not going anywhere without this connection and I know the way back. Now that I'm here, I'm filled with a morbid curiosity that will keep me from leaving before I've illuminated every room in this place. I was strangely excited to sit with Deb and make the connections between the painful places in my past and the shameful way it all began. I sat for three mornings after I returned home and let my fingers translate the electricity in my brain that was busy finding more pieces.
Letting it all come was humbling and amazing. I still don't quite know how some of the stories found their way out. Certainly it wasn't through any active effort on my part. I am left feeling that they simply found a path to navigate after all this time and all I had to do was let them come and be sure to leave the door open.
Tonight I am in awe at the power that certain events have held over me in my life. Although there are not many details I recall, the molestation I suffered at the age of eight branded my psyche with a certainty that I was less. Unworthy. Deserving of pain and destined to work every moment of my life to prove myself to others. I accepted this unquestioningly and spent thirty years of my life basing my decisions on it.
The first time I fell in love I was even more determined to hide my 'true' nature and prove myself good enough for the boy I loved. In my fanatical need to be worthy of kindness from this other person, I courted disaster. I refused to acknowledge that I was human and needed any kind of support, emotional or otherwise. I actively solicited physical abuse and felt somehow validated when I received it, believing I deserved it.
I have spent decades of my life living out a sentence imposed upon me by someone who had no right to treat me the way he did. Without him speaking a word to me, I let him convince me that I was trash, worthless, good for nothing, disposable. It wasn't until I began walking through the dark rooms of this house and flipping on the lights that I started to realize he was wrong. Going from room to room I am recognizing the paths I've taken again and again, trapped in the dark. Today, I carry a flashlight and I'm going to light this place up like the 4th of July. Once I'm standing in the light, I think I might be able to begin formulating my own ideas of what I'm worth.