Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Gloom & Doom vs Sunshine & Roses

When I previewed my previous blog entry, I took one look at the picture I had chosen (a pensive girl) and thought, "Gee, that's really depressing."  I removed the picture.  I realized that by  writing openly about the realities of childhood sexual abuse, you could get the impression that every minute of my childhood was full of fear and dread.  And it really wasn't.  The human spirit (and body, I guess) won't let us stay in that place for long. We protect ourselves by hiding the reality away, out of mind and sight, and we find ways to laugh, wonder, imagine, and create.  We find ways to be children.

My brothers and sisters and I went on adventures, climbed trees, and had secrets.  We ran and laughed and fought, like all kids do.  As we got older, we learned things from our parents.  I learned about carburetor's and spark plugs, growing carrots and rhubarb, ironing and hanging clothes, and making bread.  We had friends, favorite clothes, dreaded chores, and foods we either loved or hated.  Yes, the "bad" stuff was there but, in between, there was "good" stuff as well.

I had been thinking about this for some time and was planning to write about it here on my blog.  But, what motivated me to actually begin writing, was a dream I had last night. In the dream, I was at some kind of gathering, like a family reunion, and I was having a really bad time.  I wanted to shut out all of the people and the commotion, so I curled up on the couch and put a blanket over my head (something I've been doing in "real life" some lately).  My siblings were attentive and wanted to understand what was going on, and even my psychologist was there.  I wanted to to tell them how I felt and that there was nothing to fear, but I couldn't express my feelings. I wasn't afraid or despairing, I was just so very, profoundly, sad.  At the end of the dream, someone touched my hand, soothingly, and I immediately had an image of that touch on my vulva.

I woke up fine, not upset, but thinking about the dream and how I might write about it.  I realized what a great counterpoint the dream was to my earlier thoughts.  As a child, I survived by shutting out the fear and pain and, by doing so, I was able to have times of joy and laughter.  As an adult, having looked the monsters in the eye, I no longer need to hide from the the traumas of past events, and I feel pretty safe and content.  But, as my dream shows, the core of the trauma, the reality of it, is still deep within me.  The bittersweet truth is that I will always carry, within myself, both the horror and the joy of my childhood.   

Today I'm very comfortable with my psychological and emotional status, and I'm grateful that I had the help and encouragement to be at peace with myself.  I know I'll learn and change and grow for the rest of my life.  I also know that my past, and all that I've lived through, has made me who I am today.  It's given me depth and compassion and helped to form my own personal style, perspective, and magic.

Life is such an amazing gift.  In spite of all the struggles and traumas, I'm glad to be alive, and I'm very glad to be me!  If you've had similar insights, or if my experience resonates with you, I'd love to hear your comments.


  1. Sharon, thank you so much for sharing and being so open and transparent. I am sorry for what has happened to you. Safe hugs.

    1. Thank you JBR. I so crave honesty (with kindness) in my life right now that I'm grateful to have a place to share my feelings, memories, and discoveries. I'll be following your journal as well. All the best to you.


I'm always thrilled to hear from readers. Thank you for making the effort to post a comment. We grow and learn from one another.