December 12th: Turning Points
I just got home from seeing my therapist, whom I adore and respect, and who I’ve been seeing regularly for over five years now.
Tonight, I finally told her the story of my life- the part that happened before all of the things that led me to her. The part before the drugs and the craziness and the dysfunction. I told her the story of my childhood, what it was like to witness domestic violence on a more and more regular basis. How helpless I felt, the way I was so often frozen with fear.
Five years, and tonight was the first time I’d thought to mention any of that to her. There was more- things I won’t talk about here because they are too personal- yep, even I have certain limits. But I told her all of it. I didn’t mean to…it just came up.
I cried a little bit. It’s hard for me, when I think about that little girl that I was, having to cope with the terror I felt. I would sometimes go to bed at night wondering if I would wake up in the morning, or, if I did wake up, if I would still have a mom. I’m not exaggerating at all- this is the truth. I look at it now, from this perspective, and it’s like I’m watching some other little girl…and I wish I could save her.
But you know what? I did do that, didn’t I? I did save her, in the end.
For a while, I had some pretty shitty coping mechanisms, but…it’s no surprise, when I think about it. The funny thing is, I didn’t even think I was hurt by it. I didn’t think it mattered. I thought “Hey, it’s over now, it’s in the past, I’m fine.” And I didn’t really think about it after that.
I have shared my story with other people before. Often, they would say “It’s a miracle you turned out as well as you did.” But I just shrugged it off. First of all, I didn’t think it was a big deal. Second of all, I didn’t think I’d turned out very well.
Tonight though, it hit me. I finally saw it. I finally understood the amazing truth. I am a goddamn miracle. I really am. I fought so very hard to be this woman sitting here, writing these words. I just didn’t know…I didn’t know that’s what I was doing. I had no idea what I was really trying to overcome. And when it became clear to me all of the sudden, I was so amazed at what I had accomplished. I honestly don’t have the words to describe it to you.
Tonight was a turning point for me. I had no idea it was coming, and I didn’t expect it, not this one, not ever. I suppose it is yet another gift of my perseverance, my desire to heal. I have no idea what else may show up, what other gifts might come. I just know that I am so grateful. So very, very grateful.
What I want to share with you right now is this: keep going. When it is hard, and when it is easy. When it hurts and when you feel nothing. Wherever you are in your journey, whatever you are seeking, whatever you are healing, processing, grasping or releasing…keep going. Right around the corner might be the turning point you never saw coming. Five minutes from now, you might see yourself in a completely different, lovely way. Keep going.