The pain is really intense right now. I think it’s mainly triggered by the school song and dance program this Saturday and Sunday, which C was in last year. I miss her so badly. Maybe I have never fully come to terms with not having her at my school. I was so dissociated last year, trying to interact with her, that I don’t even really know what my experience was, but I think it was more than it seems like it ought to have been.

I was watching a video on attachment activities with children, which turned out not to be relevant to my life all that much, but the foster mother doing the video mentioned how the girl she was doing the activities with wouldn’t have the same response to them as her own foster child, because she already has strong attachments. For someone without attachments, a feeling of attachment is like the lights coming on after a long power outage. It’s like seeing a huge rainbow. It’s a huge, huge “wow.”

So what I felt, and C felt, around this time of year as our relationship was becoming stronger was huge for both of us. I understand now why I stood in her doorway impulsively stroking her face for a second before thinking, “What the hell am I doing?” Feeling an attachment was amazing for me, and it was also amazing for her. I think there might be something about remembering this point in the year, when the attachment was forming and when it was all new and before it became clear that an attachment to C meant coping with a lot of sadness and fear and shame and anger from both of us, something very intense and poignant. It might be that I would not have ever experienced it if I had a normal attachment to my parents. Normal children feel this “wow” of attachment when they are babies. That is when the attachment is new and exciting for them and they have a sense of wonder about it, just like they have a sense of wonder about so many other things that are new for them.

I think there is something to that for me where I might be reflecting and realizing this sense of wonder would not have been part of getting to know C if I had had a normal attachment to anyone else. It makes me realize why the wish for attachment, and the longing I feel for C, is so very, very strong at times. I am longing for something very, very important. I am longing for a feeling of connection that I really don’t get very much in life, and which human beings truly need.

It also makes me realize that is why I have to do this. That’s why this healing process has to go on, because I need attachments. I need to have ongoing experiences of connection, and those experiences of connection get interrupted by the trauma reactions connection triggers.

This has to be done. And I am so tired.