Shared Journal Entry #8
March 24, 2018
I recently spent some time in my hometown of Ajax and it was challenging. Being in the city reminds me of all the episodes I have had and all the damage I caused. I was there to take care of my mother after her shoulder surgery and I was happy that I was able to help. I saw most of my extended family and that bought me happiness as well. Seeing my father however was triggering. Our relationship is nowhere near good and we spend most of our time ignoring each other. By the end of the five day trip I was exhausted especially after day four when I had a panic attack.
We were all sitting in the kitchen watching Oprah’s Where Are They Now and a segment came on about a little girl who was molested from the ages of six to eight. When I heard this something snapped inside me, I lost it, I left the room went to the guest room and burst into tears. My mom and my aunt followed me into the room trying to figure out what caused the outburst. I was inconsolable, I started hyperventilating, I couldn’t breathe and my mother and aunt started to pray. Eventually I took my Ativan and it subdued my anxiety.
I was lost in the memories of my past, trapped by my own trauma of molestation. I was six years old when it started. A friend of my father’s came into my room one night and started to massage me between my legs, masturbating me while he got off on the sensation. He said he was trying to help me feel better and these episodes would continue periodically until I was nine and my family relocated to the suburbs. He was like a ghost that would just appear in my bedroom, touching me then disappearing into the night until the next time. I was told that he eventually got caught molesting the little boy of another friend and was put in jail. I don’t currently know where he is or what he’s doing, this pedophile may still be harming little kids. I’m still not sure why I never told my parents, perhaps it was the shame, perhaps it was him whispering in my ear that this was our special secret I’m not sure but I kept it to myself for years until it was a forgotten memory that resurfaced as an adult.
My visceral reaction to the story of the young girl proved that I have yet to deal with this traumatic part of my past. I am currently in therapy but there are several horrific traumas in my life that I have to work through I’m just not ready to face this one. I know I’m still living in avoidance and I haven’t accepted the things that have happened to me and I haven’t fully forgiven the people that have wronged me and I haven’t forgiven myself. I’m still holding onto the demons that are inside me.
Acceptance and forgiveness are tricky animals. I fear if I forgive, accept, let go it would be like telling my abusers what they did to me is okay. My therapist says that’s not the reality. Acceptance and forgiveness are for my benefit so I can move on with my life. Right now I feel stuck in my past and I know I have a lot of work ahead of me before I can truly let go. I continue to work hard in therapy to get there but it’s a process, a long winding road, a journey of self-discovery that I have to go through on my own. No amount of hoping and praying will make me forgive or accept, I have to do the work within myself for that to happen.
I have to face my past and all the brutality that occurred by taking things one step at a time. I am confident that one day I will be able to accept all that has transpired. I’m even sure that one day I will be able to forgive but it’s going to take time and I have plenty of that right now. The one thing I am focused on right now is accepting and forgiving myself, recognizing that what happened to me isn’t my fault, realizing that I am worthy of good things and accepting that everything I have been though has a purpose and meaning beyond what I can currently comprehend.
I’m learning about myself on this journey to forgiveness and acceptance. I’m learning that I am strong, capable and open to all the possibilities of the future despite my past. Forgiveness won’t come easy but I look forward to the day when my mind, body and soul are clear of the demons I may never forget but will learn to accept.