Getting it

Someone got it today. Me, I got it.

I got that this is necessary. My traumatic childhood really happened and I really have to deal with it and it is really difficult. It is something I have to deal with every day and put a lot of effort into and this is going to go on for a stretch of time.

I am not a broken person whose life has been destroyed, but I cannot also pretend everything is fine now either. I can’t even work crazy-hard for some finite period of time and be “healed.” These are my memories and I will have to deal with them in some way, some fashion, to some extent for the rest of my life. They are not wounds. They are my childhood. Everybody gets one. Mine was, well, what it was. Not pleasant. Horrifying.

Certain things are enormously better. I had a hectic day without a lot of downtime, a rough morning, and then I went for tea at a friend’s house and bought the missing item from a new outfit to wear on Thursday. I bought a bright pink pen for somebody who wanted one (blue ink), toilet paper, and junk food. I went to three shops. In other words, I had more energy to get things done than I have had in a decade. It’s not that things are dreadful.

But it’s now nightfall and someone inside wants Nata and is scared that she is not here. Someone inside, I would guess, who is too cut off from me at the moment—after my busy day—to remember she is dead. I get to deal with that.

I should probably cast my mind over what I was remembering in the morning of Farzana to get that a little bit processed—a key problem, I have realized, is I have an enormous backlog in events that need to be considered and organized and had meaning made out of. Every day, I need to spend some time catching up on the last forty-one years of my life or I will never catch up.

I also know that, here in Country X, a part of what has helped me is that hardly anything happens. Very little that is unexpected happens. Very little happens at all. There was a football match after school. There is a movie playing. It’s an auspicious month and a good time to walk around the holy site. Other than that, there is absolutely nothing different going on. I saw the same people I always see. I think I saw four people in the morning I didn’t know—workers. They’ve come to do something with the water system, and we aren’t supposed to have water these days due to some kind of tank cleaning. We do have water, but I suppose at some point we won’t. There is long trench dug alongside the street now that wasn’t there in the morning, but I am not surprised. They started the trench the day before.

That’s it. That’s the extent of the excitement here in Y-town.

Which means the triggers I’ve dealt with in the day were all triggers I knew about and expected and have spent the last few months chipping away at. They were: morning, nightfall, bending my neck to wash dishes. And there was very little to process in between.

When I go back to my own country, there will be new triggers. There will be unexpected triggers. There will be a lot more going on that I have to process in the present while I am yet in a triggered state from something that happened earlier in the day. I will have to deal with that. There is no real way around that.

So that’s my life. That’s what I have to do now because of what happened in my childhood. And there are no corners to cut.

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3 thoughts on “Getting it

  1. Cat's Meow June 3, 2015 / 11:50 pm

    I hear what you are saying about the fact that you will be dealing with your childhood for the rest of your life.

    I have come to the same conclusion myself. When I talked with my therapist about it, her opinion was that the work that we are doing will bring the intensity level down, so I will be less likely to be triggered and when I am triggered, I should be able to handle it more easily. All of the internal communication will help to reduce the number of times when I am blindsided with things. But I will always have vulnerabilities that other people don’t have.

    I suspect that your situation is very similar.

    I can see why you would be concerned about the greater degree of stress on your system that you will experienced in a faster paced and more varied environment. Is this something that you can take into account as you decide where to return to? My in laws live in the city that you came from and I know that I could not live there, myself. Too stimulating for me. I do much better in a smaller town and currently live in a town of about 35,000.

    • Ashana M June 4, 2015 / 9:58 am

      What I am working out is that I need to consider down time as a need. The more unusual situations in the day, the more down time i am going to need. I think as time goes on, this will be less, but I have a huge number of memories that just really aren’t processed, and they get set off by things i wouldn’t expect and there’s not always opportunity in “real time” to do this. Some of these are intense, and some of these are fairly positive, but they take time. I’m hoping the store of these might get smaller over the next few months, but i might always be there. Memories aren’t available for processing until there’s a reminder. The reminder can’t always be planned or anticipated.

      I think the other aspect is that I will always have this childhood–these reasons that I am the way I am–that I can’t talk about freely. I have to think about what I share and how I do that.

      Maybe those are the smaller things that won’t go away. There are other things that might be bigger. I am going to remember the people I lost and I don’t think there’s going to be a point when I won’t have some feelings about this.

      • Cat's Meow June 4, 2015 / 11:32 am

        It would be kind of weird to not have some feelings about a significant portion of your life, wouldn’t it? I don’t mean that flippantly- it’s kind of an “aha!” moment for me.

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