bare naked

i used to lie, cheat and steal. a lot a lot. so unbelievably much that it was a recurrent theme in my life. was there ever a time i was not lying in some way or another? i sometimes wonder what went so wrong in my life and head that made me make those choices. what influenced me to believe those actions were fine. fine that that was who i wanted to be? or was it that it didn’t occur to me to think of what it all meant. that i was destroying the very thing i thought i was giving my all to build. relationships. i’m sure sometimes people allowed me to believe they didn’t know when they did. i’m sure it hurt a lot of people and damaged a lot of relationships. it gradually stopped a good sum of years ago. but i am uncomfortable still to be honest with the people i wronged, to ask for forgiveness, to bare the truth. does that mean i have not completed my steps in recovery? why does it bother me sometimes that i have not? i wish it was something i could express. but i am truly genuinely ashamed. of my past behavior and the things my younger self thought was alright. the things i allowed myself to get away with. or believe i was getting away with. i am afraid of what people may think of me. of people thinking lesser. because pride. pride wants to feel like i am only who i am now, whom i am so proud of. i am scared of it affecting the relationships i have left. or perhaps i’d rather not face the consequences. of anger or judgment or words. i feel, too lazy to want to bother. is that just an excuse i’ve made up for myself? is this discomfort because i have not faced the consequences? and is not diving deep at the discomfort running from myself? why am i running? why do i need to run? i acknowledge within myself in this moment, all the things that i have done. some things i have been punished for. shamed. received consequences, sometimes disproportionate to my crimes. but other things i absolutely got away with scot-free. but getting away with things did not keep me from the eventuality of facing myself. bare naked. and i worked really hard on making all the right choices. and choosing to be “straight”… enough at least. to not hurt anyone who did not deserve any hurting. does me being a different person make it alright to leave the past in the past? i figure, perhaps it hasn’t gone away because it has not been expressed in any way other than emotions and memories floating in my mind. i am so sorry. i am so incredibly sorry, that i did any of that – for attention, or to feel wanted, out of desperation or wanting to take from life what i felt it owed me. nothing justifies hurting, taking from or lying to a person. especially the ones who have cared about me. i have paid my dues. i have lost most of everything in my life. i know what rock bottom feels like. i was fortunate enough that by the grace of the universe, a sequence of events took place to bring me back to center and into abundance. so i speak only the truth now and am as genuine and honest as i know how to be in all situations. the truth is there were many parts of myself that in hindsight after healing most wounds, i look back and think what the hell was wrong with me? and those things that caused me to be who i am are very much forever a part of me, somewhere, tucked away. hopefully for good, but perhaps always just one mistake away from spilling out. and i try incredibly hard to be my best self, because i know what’s on the other end of of the tale and i never want to be that again. i hope this is an acknowledgement enough for myself to be at peace with things. it certainly would be nice to be able to forgive my past self for all the crazy things she did because she was hurting and didn’t know better. but now she does.

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retrograde

the past month or two has been quite an emotional roller coaster ride. not that all of life isn’t. or that there’s really any “down” time where there isn’t something to process or grow from. but the planets have been in retrograde and causing some chaos. stirring things up so i am able to fine tune myself and life even more. i feel like my expression had switched over to an emotional channel and i desire not to put in much effort into thinking about what i write. instead, i just sit here and flow with my emotions. eyes closed half the time. it’s kinda beautiful to journal for myself, to allow my thoughts to just be. instead of presenting things for people to see. i feel as though it sets a part of me free. the part that is concerned with how everything comes across. wanting to please. or to impress. it’s beautiful to accept myself more and more as i am. so what if i am quirky. or weird. or a little awkward. everybody is uniquely themselves. both likable and unlikable. why do i waste time trying to be anything for anyone else and forget how to just be me. i want to be myself. and learn what that means. i think it’s good time i did just that.

observing

is there such a thing as the “right” people. as in, the right people to surround yourself with. or the right people to have in your life. should you remove those who negatively impact your space? or is “right” just an illusion and people are just people. to be allowed to be in your life as they are, despite whatever it is that frustrates you, hurts you or puts you off. should you instead work on acceptance and getting to a place where people aren’t able to have an impact on how you feel. a place of no reaction because reaction is not necessary. because reacting is a choice. does that place exist? or is that an illusion? from that space where you are neither happier nor saddened, calmed nor frustrated by the action of others, does joy exist? can you choose to let in the good without feeling the bad? can one exist without the other? or are you meant to feel everything in its entirety, with no expectation of control over life. yours or anyone else’s. to be here solely to watch, to experience. to just flow with the currents. to be nothing more and nothing less than just the observer.

star light, star bright

i wish i could go back in time. with all this love and sanity, to save myself. it pains me so much when i think of how things played out in my life. before i knew how to process what was going on and foresee how it would later impact me and my life. how it would affect all my choices and experiences. i wish i could save myself from the negative influence my parents relationship and separation was to my space. to watch them argue and fight and yell and scream. to see them so unhappy, so lacking. so incomplete. to have seen and internalized all that violence and rage. i wish i could save myself from all the bad choices i made. all the bad choices i made from that space of chaos and insanity. i wish i could give myself a home. a real home, one that wouldn’t get taken away. ripped from my heart and hands. leaving me displaced, alone, lost – to figure out how to fend for myself. i wish i had the tools to cope with what happened better. i wish my parents showed me what love is. what true, unapologetic, wholesome, complete love is. for self. for each other. not a game of cat and mouse. never being satisfied. complaining. disagreeing. fighting. controlling. waiting for love. begging for a love that isn’t there. i wish i knew what love is. i wish i could have chosen to hold on to the right people and not need to walk into all the wrong ones. to know who loved me and who didn’t know how to. to tell the difference, to have my foundation so grounded at home, with my family – to have a family – to not need to seek fulfillment outside. to not think i was in search of happiness when in reality, i was trying to fill a void. the void that was family i wanted back. the void that would could never be filled. i wish i had a home to go back to, when i didn’t feel safe and in the right place. when i changed my mind. someone to protect me and love me and listen to me and guide me with a conscious and loving hand. a space i could remain settled in so i could take my time with decisions i made and not have to rush through everything to find stable ground. i wish i didn’t step into life so damaged. so angry, so bitter, so broken, so needy. even though now in hindsight i can see how the damage began so much earlier than the the time the separation took place, i didn’t know back then. and i was used to having a family. i still needed my family. i wish it didn’t all get ripped away from me. i wish i didn’t find myself 18, on the cusp of adulthood, in the middle of a shitstorm. i wish my parents were in a better place to have been able to be around for us. to prioritize us. to care about how it was impacting us. i wish they had the coping tools to have separated better. without the great big mess that ensued. i wish they knew how it was their fault, and not ours. their choice, not ours. and didn’t punish us for it. i wish they apologized, not for discovering they weren’t meant to be, but for putting us through such an ugly terrible few years. for leaving us, for changing the game on us partway through. i wish they found a way to minimize damage to us. to acknowledge how much we were still loved by the other, instead of ripping each other apart, putting us in the middle of a war. making me feel like neither loved me. neither prioritized me. neither cared. i wish it didn’t all make me feel unloved, so i wouldn’t have had to look for love in all the wrong places. so i didn’t have to trade parts of myself i did not want to, to be wanted, approved, accepted. i wish i understood how to love and be loved. that i did not need to make myself more agreeable in order to be taken in by others. that being damaged goods did not mean no one could love me. that i didn’t need to be desperate. and that desperate love was never going to be wholesome love. i wish i knew how worthy i was. worthy of real, good love. that i was not defined by the trauma i had been through. i wish i was unafraid of the good people. unafraid to be patient, and to be loved right. i wish i didn’t need to be such a disaster, turning everything i touched into shit. too scared i would hurt anyone who knew how to love me, and choosing those that didn’t know how to. allowing myself to replay the same scenario over and over and over again. to remain comfortably where i knew how to be, rejected, hidden, wrong. blaming it on others. over and over again until i faced myself to see that it was i that didn’t know how to love myself. i wish i knew how to be then, who i am now. worthy. worthy of all the love life has to give me. worthy of being treated right. worthy of happiness. worthy because i am no less than anyone else that exists, broken or not. just as they are no less worthy than i am. because worthiness is not something you have to sell parts of yourself to own. it is not something that is traded or earned or given to you through approval. it does not demand you to be perfect or even alright. it just is. you are here. and you are worthy. i wish i knew that, before i had lost all parts of myself just to find that worthiness was not to be found at the bottom of the barrel. after i was done draining all of myself and had nothing left to give. nothing left to be. the bottom was emptiness.  worthiness, on the other hand, is the barrel. and the barrel is me. i wish i could have saved myself all that pain and all that trouble and all the mistakes made. but i suppose all i can do, is be thankful that after all that, i found my way here. that i have survived. that i can heal myself. and maybe, just maybe, i will be able to give all that i wished for myself – to my children. to my daughter/s. so that 30 years from now, they aren’t sitting with themselves wishing it had been different. i wish for them, love.

star light, star bright,
first star i see tonight,
i wish i may, i wish i might,
have this wish i wish tonight.

me too

trigger warning – description of sexual molestation.

i was molested in my early teenage years. my recollection of it is vague because it would happen while i slept. but sometimes i’d wake up, and those brief moments are imprinted. like a scar, burned into my memories. a dark corner i never want to visit. today, i want to shine the brightest light i can muster, directly at that corner. i want to know what is so disgustingly painful. dirty. shameful. that i have not been able to find the voice to share it in it’s absolute truth before. what a useless thing to carry around, shame. i have been on a quest to find my essence self. i write this in hope of releasing what has caged me for almost the entirety of my life.

the molestation took place in my home. my room. i was most likely 13-14, and my brother would have been 10-11. i can’t remember how often or how many times it happened. all i know for sure is that i can count 4 incidents. he would sneak into my room and touch me. my breasts. and then he’d lift my nightgown and move my underwear to look at my vagina. i don’t believe he ever touched my there. once i remember him reaching ejaculation because some of it landed on my leg. one night, i heard my door open. i must have intentionally moved around, causing him to hide under the bed and i called for my mum. and even then, even though i knew full well what was going on, i told her i thought there was something under my double decker bed. of course that must have sounded like the silliest thing coming from a 13/14 year old. one would think a 13/14 year old has outgrown the “monster under my bed” fear. but she checked, and found my brother. who said he wanted to scare me. and we left it at that. i don’t remember the order of those incidents. i’d like to think that was the end of it.

i now fully accept that his actions must have been out of curiosity. every teenager is curious. i have no idea why he chose to act on that curiosity with me, but i don’t hold that against him any more than i need to. i confronted him once in 2008, although my emotional and mental state was such a mess back then, i did not know how to address it in a mature, wholesome way. it was during a fight, because we used to fight terribly. i’d upset or annoy him and sometimes that would lead to him grabbing me by my hair and/or spitting at me. i blame the physical violence on my parent’s relationship. another corner for another day. so it was during one of those fights that i went to grab a knife. and i sat down across him and told him that if he didn’t come near me, i wouldn’t attack him. and then i demanded an apology for what he did to me. i’m sure he apologized. i don’t think i ever let him know before, that i knew. and i have not brought it up since. just that once. the way i remember it, my dad was sitting right there. i wish i could remember with certainty what his reaction was, because when i think of how my dad handled the situation, all i draw is a blank. could it be that he just ignored it? or did he not think much of it as i did not reveal details? should i have?

the thing with being molested when you’re young is. someone is touching you sexually. someone is touching you sexually in a way you have never experienced being touched before. it is something you are not in the slightest bit prepared for. perhaps if it were to happen in adulthood, one would have a clearer idea of what’s alright and what’s not. because when you are touched sexually not in a rough, rape type scenario, it’s not in itself an unpleasant feeling. especially when i had never been touched, never had a sexual experience. i gather part of the shame and darkness in the whole experience is because i liked it on some level. being touched. being aroused. i created a fantasy world where it was not my brother touching me. i was just being touched. the stories we tell ourselves stories to make things alright. maybe i even looked forward to it. being aroused. pretended to still be asleep. until it was too much to deal with anymore – the fact that it was my brother – making it all sorts of wrong – and i chose, i think, to put an end to it. i sealed that corner off for good. never to be visited. never wanting to feel that way again. because it was disgusting and wrong.

unfortunately though, all my natural normal sexual feelings got sealed in as well and the result of that was that being aroused always went hand in hand with feeling guilty. or shame. or dirty. so for the longest time, i never let anyone touch my breasts. and whenever anyone insisted to, it felt terrible. sometimes it made me want to cry. but no one ever understood why because for the longest time, even i didn’t understand why. i had done such a great job at pretending it didn’t affect me that i couldn’t see how it was spilling into all my experiences, affecting all my relationships. i always used the excuse that my breasts were for my babies and not for sexual pleasure. but the truth was that it brought me great pleasure, which then made me instantly feel all that disgust, effectively removing enjoyment from intimacy. despite being very active. i chose to focus on the guy and pleasing him, to avoid being pleased myself which caused all my energy to go towards serving instead of self loving.

and that’s how the story went until i began to face it. my psychedelic awakening as i crossed into adulthood forced me to come to terms with the fact that i was in need of healing in more ways than one. for the longest time it was incredibly hard to face the truth of what happened. i was angry at life for taking something away from me. why did it have to happen to me? why was i not entitled to blossom into my full self without being scarred by that trauma. i had to face the reality of how that one incident reached through the rest of my life into all my experiences and forgive life over and over again.  anytime i came across something in movies or the media that touched on the subject, capturing my attention in a way no regular person would have interest in, i used those opportunities to search a little deeper. to share more with my husband. to open up about it. until i was no longer angry. until i was no longer ashamed. until i reached a tipping point and it all finally clicked for me.

i can, allow myself to enjoy being aroused. it is not dirty, it is not wrong. there is no shame in a healthy sexual experience. i am not the abuse that happened to me. it happened, but it’s alright that it happened. all kinds of things happen in life that we have little to no control over. it does not define me. and it certainly does not need to linger into every sexual experience i have for the rest of my life. i can part ways with my confused, tormented child self. i can experience things the way i could have, had it not been made confusing.

would it have made a difference if i had spoken up about it at an earlier point in my life? or any point for that matter. what if i had told my parents when it happened? would it have helped heal me in time to allow me the freedom to experience myself? you see, it was my brother. my much loved baby brother. and even though for the longest time our relationship was strained, i have always loved him. i didn’t ask for those things to happen. i have always wanted our relationship to be undamaged. the way it could have been. and how could i speak of things without putting him in the role of the perpetrator? how could i heal myself without implicating him in what happened. i have forgiven him and i understand that sometimes we do things that we feel like doing without knowing the consequences. everybody does. how do we know what is right and wrong until we learn it? there is a line between unintended mistakes and evil and i don’t believe this was the latter.

but i acknowledge that to some extent it is easier for me to face, “easy” for me to express. as it is much less of a social stigma for me than it would be for him if people found out. the awareness of putting him in a place he might not want to be always kept me quiet. i didn’t want people to know of what he did, because what if he doesn’t want people to know? how would that affect him? and what would become of our relationship? it is still the one thing that keeps me from sharing. had it been anyone else, i could have done this a long time ago. what if it was someone else? i am tired of pretending and playing games with my memories.

there is a light bursting through the seams of my silence. i do not want to hold it in any longer and deny myself the lightness that comes with being transparent about the experiences we have. to put it all out there and say yes, this happened to me, and there is no shame. there is no shame because i am not ashamed of my story. this is me. all of me. and i love all of me. but for now, i share this quietly. despite the desire to be open and proud of it. because he is still my baby brother. because of that, i do not want to forcefully put him in that place. never. but it is also alright if it is meant to be that the truth finds its way to the light. i am not scared of the consequences anymore. it is not for me to concern myself with whether anyone else is able to handle the truth or not.

i shall do what i need to to heal myself. because i am allowed to heal myself and reclaim the me i would have been.

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the light at the end of the tunnel is not an illusion. the tunnel is.

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