Monday, July 31, 2017

Pondering


Four eggs I found today, three in the pump house and the newest one, the maiden egg of a young hen, was laid in the actual hen house in a nest. It's that deep rich brown one at the top there and I could not be more proud if I had laid it myself.
Thank you, babies, I want to say to all of them. Thank you. 

Sometimes I wonder why it is that such simple, prosaic things seem to be such deeply satisfying miracles to me. I was thinking about this today and it occurred to me that this may be the result of the sexual abuse I survived as a child. The effects of having been abused are myriad and uncountable in numbers. As I discovered when I went into therapy with the woman who saved my life and whatever sanity I may have, it's like an onion with an infinite number of layers, trying to get through and to the core of the ways the abuse affected me then and how all of that led to coping mechanisms and beliefs and reactions and actions and on and on and on which have made my life what it is.
The good and the bad. Both.
It is absolutely true that I am not the person I would have been had I had a decent childhood, free of fear and confusion and betrayal and mental illness. Of course none of us had a perfect childhood and there are people who have managed to not only survive but go on to become amazingly well-balanced and sane and functional human beings who suffered what all of us would agree was the most egregious and cruel and horrendous abuse as children.
And of course, many have grown up to barely function in this world and some develop such unhealthy coping mechanisms and mental illness that they cannot function in this world at all.
Like the very process of trying to get to the heart of it all, the resulting consequences are as varied and many as that other onion, although there are certainly many of us who share the same problems and yes, strengths. I remember when I started going to a sexual abuse survivors group and began to listen to others who had been through what I had been through and I realized that instead of being the unique person I thought I was, I was one of many who shared so much.
Our stories were all different and yet, all so similar.

And how does this relate to my appreciation and sense of wonder at things like a chicken laying an egg or the dirt and a seed resulting in food for my table?
I think it may be because one of the things which was stolen from me in my childhood was the trust in anything I could not see or touch or feel.
Someone who says they love you may, in fact, be the very person who is systematically and surely using those words in order to gain your trust and your silence. And with that terrifying knowledge comes an inability to believe in any person of authority along with a deep fear of those who are more powerful than you, no matter what they say.
Religious leaders for instance, who represent the Big and Ultimate Authority. And that Ultimate Authority itself.

This is true for me at least, and thus, don't even try to talk to me about a big daddy who loves me and wants me to love him and who died for me. I ain't got time for that shit. No one in the history of the universe has died and come back to say any religion is true.

But.

Eggs and dirt and seeds and love and light and babies and art and oceans and solar systems and space are actual and real things I can see and feel with my own senses and my own heart and my own soul and we humans do need something which is spiritual and beyond us and more eternal than we are.

Well. That's what I'm thinking tonight.

I am also thinking it might be time for me to talk more about childhood sexual abuse. Not only for myself but for the many who come here who also experienced that particular sort of hell. Perhaps I need to open that closet once more and let the light touch things I have not been brave enough or tough enough or even aware enough to admit are there.

I will ponder this and let me also say that this is a safe place for anyone who wants to talk about their own experiences. Obviously.

Meanwhile, there will still be news of grandchildren and chickens, weather and other everyday wonders.
You can count on that.

Love...Ms. Moon

15 comments:

  1. If all of the broken children got together there would be cities full. Broken in various degrees of course and there is nothing to be said for the breaking of a little girl by a "trusted" person who "loves" her. That seems to me the most vile damage done, the most difficult to endure and recover from. I am so sorry. If it is eggs,dirt , seeds, light and love that will see you through I say pile it on !!! Whatever keeps that horror at bay. Fuck those memories, I stab them in the hearts, in the eyes and in their very souls. Girl children were generally nearly always sexually abused, my funny uncle...Mother not believing...curiosity and shame and all of that shit. Girl children are the toughest of the species that is for sure.

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    1. You are right. I cannot, for the life of me, figure out an evolutionary reason for pedophilia. It is incredibly damaging and I can see no benefits to it at all. And yes, girl children are the toughest of the species but there are boys who have had to be tough too. I know this for sure and that breaks my heart as well. Thank you, Linda Sue, for your beautiful comment.

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  2. You are a she hero (only thing I could write without spellcheck changing...) to me you in many ways. You have a life now that I feel is one any survivor would yearn for. And that is
    you and your hard work and your ability to have trusted again. I am not downplaying that at times the shit comes up to haunt you sometimes at all. I just deeply respect you. You know I know what it's like and I wish one day I can accept love and believe it.

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    1. The secret is, for me, that such good people have come into my life that I have learned to trust. And I have also learned to love as fully and joyfully as anyone can love from my children and my grandchildren. In this I am so incredibly lucky. And my hope for you is that one day yes, you will learn to accept love and truly believe it. It is possible and I hope you know that you deserve that.

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  3. Beautiful writing, Mary. How much sense it makes to find healing in the real things we can see or touch or feel the breath of life in, absorb the beauty of a brown egg or a mysterious star. And how familiar I am with the onion effect, always one more layer to peel. We do get closer to understanding, to putting the confusion to rest . . . and then just when we think we're settled, another layer appears to be painfully peeled. Keep writing, keep sharing, and we'll keep listening and being thankful for you. A marvelous header, wasn't it made for Ms. Moon?! Becky

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    1. Exactly- and some of those layers are absolutely filled with pain. The harder they are, the longer it takes us to address them. It really never ends, does it? And yet, we go on. We do go on. And there is joy.

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  4. Shining a light dissipates the shadows. You do that for so many, you help little girls whose trust was betrayed in the dark, reach for the light. This is love.

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    1. I believe that. That the only way to do something about abuse is to talk about it and to understand truly that the shame is not ours to bear. I love you.

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  5. You're one of the bravest, truest people I know.

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    1. I wish I could live up to that, Elizabeth. Thank you.

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  6. I love you Mary and that is real enough to touch.

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    1. I love you, too, Ellen. Thank you.

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  7. I sure do love you, Mama. I think your words mean so much to so many people- for people who have been through sexual abuse, and those of us who have been lucky enough not to know it first hand, but probably know at least one person (probably dozens) who have.
    Keep writing about whatever you need to. It's always good.

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  8. I am fortunate in that I never had to go through sexual abuse. I admire you and other brave people that will talk about these experiences, because it can only help others. Thank you for being willing to open up here on your blog. You are a wonder.

    In my recent training to become a court-appointed advocate for foster care children, we talked about the possibility of becoming a Guardian to a child that has been sexually abused. A fair number of the children in the custody of the state have been. I'm a little worried about how I'll be able to be totally objective in a case like that. So I'll be glad to read any of your thoughts about this stuff if you'll trust us enough (and want to) write about it here on your blog.

    Thank you, my friend! <3

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  9. I'm sure I've said this before, but I think an ability to appreciate the "little things" is absolutely a key to overall happiness and contentment in life. And as roiled as your world has been by what happened years ago, you show an amazing ability to find joy in your surroundings and the little lives you nurture. I wonder if your decision to consider writing more about your childhood sexual abuse led to the discomfort and dream-state you felt later? Or is it the other way around -- a rising up of memory that's leading you to want to write about it? The chicken or the egg, so to speak.

    Anyway, I have no doubt you have a lot to say on these matters that others with similar experiences would find immensely valuable and supportive. Your writing ability is a gift, and if you can use it to illuminate the path for others, well, that seems a worthwhile expenditure of your talent.

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Tell me, sweeties. Tell me what you think.