I arrive home from therapy, still, shaken and chilled. You can be both still and shaken believe me. The shaking happens first. I go still to cope with the shaking.
Trauma has me. Trauma is me- or was me.
I watch the trees and shrubs in the neighbours gardens bend and sway, obeying the force of the wind. I am chilled to the bone; cold, hunched, clenched, vacant, empty, floating, drifting in and out of higher and lower levels of consciousness.
I am not mad. I am just a lady dealing with her traumatic past. I am perfectly sane. Just shaken, still and chilled. I freeze with fear and freeze with the exersion of trying to push that stuff that wants to come up, way back down into the deep down recesses of my mind again.
“I don’t want to have this thank you. Kindly vacate the premises. Call security. My inner security is threatened, you see.”
It’s this time of year that bothers me. The spring solstice, the summer solstice, the full moons, everything inbetween.
I scratch around for safety. I forage for peace and calm and silence and the replenishment and protection of cocooning myself all alone.
“I want to finish my book” I announce with a most definite tone. “These memoirs of mine need to be written”, I state. “I have a book in me that needs to be written and now is the time to do it. I need to get this book out of me and on paper,” I tell her…her being my therapist.
“It will be hard, but I have to do it. There is no other way” I say.
Traumatic material that formed the fabric of my upbringing needs to be got outside of me and onto a white blank blinking cursor screen. I’ve begun editing what I’ve written and now need to start writing fresh content.
This trauma stuff needs to be walked through and explored. I will need to go deep into my flashbacks to retrieve the terror so that I can share it with whoever is reading, transmitting exactly to you how I felt when it happened to me. Otherwise, what is the point of writing your memoirs? If you protect your readers from the full force of your memories?
Writing a memoir is different to writing a fictional story. I NEVER EVER write fiction. I can’t do fiction. No fiction that I could concoct could match the intensity of my actual real-life memories. No one else knows the entirety of what is in my head and the story I need to tell. Noone else can write it for me because they would be essentially having to make stuff up in their head in order to create something that never happened.
I know the story because I lived the story.
Nothing can be added that didn’t happen. I know the beginning, middle and end and have already written the passage on who I want to thank. (I liked the idea of writing that before I completed the book, as it helps me creatively visualise the book finished, which enhances my motivation to actually finish the book!)
I will need my therapist in the background while I write the book. I need to write the book while I am still a NHS patient with a care plan and a safety net in place. She said today that I need awareness that blogging daily and writing and telling my story in the media will inevitably keep the wound of my past open to some extent, and she queried how helpful this is to me. I shook my head though because if I don’t do this, I can’t imagine what I would do in life. There is nothing else that matches the drive I have to post-traumatically shine and help others by giving over to people my raw honesty and laying out my heart bare.
I will need to consider what she said at some stage but today I am just raw. Therapy today was excruciatingly difficult in places. Nerves were touched and uncomfortable subjects ventured into. I have too much inner emotional processing to go on before I write about it any more, but I know today was significant. I took risks in what I said and bared myself in a very emotionally vulnerable way, which is not easy for me to do. I think the therapy today was beneficial, though challenging. Every therapy appointment is different. There is no magic formula or plan.
The only typical outcome of therapy of therapy days is usually me leaving the room weeping, and that is quite a consistent pattern. The emotion of the session and the conversations we’ve had has to leak out somehow, someway, sometime- usually the last ten minutes of so of the therapy and throughout the drive home. My tears have usually dried by the time my car pulls up on the drive, but bed is usually where I head straight to. I need the safety of my duvet where I can keep my pain wrapped up warm and cosy.
I am due to do the school run now so have to stop, but will most definitely write more when I’m able. Right now I’m just shaken, still and chilled to the bone- covered in the goosebumps of currently suicidal-esque emotion.