Sunday, April 13, 2014
A Glmpse Into What Could Be
You know I have struggled on what to write on today's blog post. I have ranted and vented and informed the readers on my attack, the events and feelings I have struggled with over the last 30 plus years. As I have lived in silence, and as I have stated in previous posts, lived in a self made prison of emotions, anger, rage and the wish that the people who took part in my Sexual assault, while I was in the Military, I also have let life pass me by. Well Today, I am going to discuss something that happened to me, just this weekend; because of what I posted about last week. Letting go.
I have accepted what has occurred to me, and have found an avenue of helping me live past the aftermath of my Attack. After 30 plus years of sufferance, after two marriages and losing my family and friends, after losing everything I owned, multiple times; I became weary of losing and of losses I could not control. I went past the Veteran's Administration, whom by the way has been ineffective in assisting me, and hired a private Therapist. (I want to mention, she has been fantastic in her efforts.)
The point is; I reached out and realized I needed help! I did not stop at finding an outlet. On the verge of giving up on life, and already given up on all hope, reaching out has been invaluable to finding out that there is no need to give up, when there are folks out there who are willing to step beyond themselves, and stretch out their talents beyond their "Norm" to reach out a hand to you..
The messages which lay within the lines of this post, is that no one knows you need help, unless you tell them and put aside your pride. Just search and reach out to find someone who will listen and lend a hand. Ever since the day of my Sexual Assault, I found out real quick that asking for help was pointless, therefore I gave up on asking for help in every aspect of my life. As an assault victim, especially a Sexual Assault Victim, you find out real quick that no one wants to hear the realities of being in that position. No one wants their lives tainted, and pretty soon you begin feeling that there is no point in asking.
Putting your head down and dredging through the pain, building up the defenses, suffering when no one is looking, is the new "Norm" of life you will come to, or have come., to know. So, you construct a "game face" and live your life behind that mask while in public; not letting anyone close to you see the real you. The draw back to doing this over time, is that you not only start hiding from those close to you, you also lose your own self identity. Over time you lose everything; including yourself.
Well, through the help of my therapist I was given a chance to get "a glimpse into what could be."
By this, It was mildly suggested that I venture out to experience something I have never experience before. No, not anything dangerous, nothing self revealing, nothing which on it's surface would be seen as putting anyone at risk at all. But for me, it was something that made me face a long laid fear, along sense of anxiety, and not only had me reliant on one big feature, which my Attack had taken away, It made me put trust in both my therapist and the person I was now asking to help me, face these fears and anxieties. (By the way, the second person involved was never before known by myself.) In the onset, I had to place trust and faith in my therapist, that she would not place me in any sort of danger, or in a compromising position. (A difficult leap of faith, To say the least.)
Well, as things would happen, it turned out to not only a means to face many anxieties, and my fears, it actually ended up opening up many more things that I had never before experienced, on the positive side. After my adventure, I took the rest of the evening and explored a place and experience, I had once enjoyed, prior to my entering the Military and thus prior to my Sexual Assault...
It took a place, that I had visited over a million times; and turned it into a new adventure of and into itself. You see, for a little while I saw this familiar place through a different set of eyes. I saw the people in a different light and was actually light hearted. (something I had not experienced in over the 33 years of being a victim.) The relaxed nature with no pretense, with no obligation to hide, with no inhabitations, and with the sole intention of being there for ME, changed my view of hope which I had never before seen it.
After walking the pier and the beaches of Huntington Beach, CA. I went to a sidewalk café/ bar and grill and had what seemed to be the best dinner, I had experienced in as long back as I could recall. I had a half glass of beer to wash dinner down. It seemed that the food amazingly tasted better, People gathered around me, as I was joking and laughing, light heartedly, with both patrons and the waitresses and staff of the establishment. I even experienced a spontaneous request from a person whom asked to join me, at my table. The reason for me to share this, is because for the first time, in what seems like forever, I felt like I was someone who was likeable, who was engaging, who was worth something aside of being referred as a monster, or someone everyone was fighting to get away from.
I had experienced a new set of experiences, that I had never before allowed myself to experience, because of self constructed walls and barriers. I was able for some reason to experience this without the heavy heart, the heavy load of my past.. In fact, there was no discussions of my past and for a while, my past or anyone else's past never came up or into question. It was just a bunch of folks enjoying a hearty laugh, and a memorable memory. This normally would have been an experience I would have had avoided at all costs.
I know you probably are thinking something along the lines of "Well, good for you!" I understand why you would say this, or something like this. But by saying or taking that position, you are also taking away from yourself if you are someone who had been Raped, Sexually Assaulted, Attacked, Mugged or suffered any other type of trauma; and refused to reach out for help in dealing with it, or for trying to seek a way to self-rediscovery.
I hope that my Glimpse into what could be, and the fact that I realized that I had lost so much. I want to encourage you to take a pro-active approach towards getting help and working through the ghosts, monsters and even demons, which were saddled along with the identity of being a victim.
In the limited time, I have utilized the aide of a therapist; I have learned and discovered so much about myself and my life. I do honestly know it is only the beginning. However, even through the hard road ahead, I look a little more forward than I had previous to this weekends events. I could not have done this, without asking for help and being encouraged by a long time friend, to seek out local assistance and therapy.
Bottom line: IF you know someone, or are someone who has been suffering in silence (as I did) for any length of time, Get that someone the help, or get to someone who can help them; help themselves. If you are a Veteran of the Military, who has suffered at the hands of your comrades, who you trusted and put your faith in; go to the Veteran's Administration and ask for help. The point is: Get help, it will serve you well.
Good luck on your journey.