Far From Home

What do you do when a moment, or a song, or a book, or maybe just a random something you encountered that you can’t even place sends you back to a place you never thought you’d be again?

After a series of random, seemingly unconnected events (that will not be discussed further here), that’s where I find myself now. In this place I was sure I’d walked though, and left behind, long ago. It’s exactly the same but also brand new. I’m so much older which I would think would help, but it doesn’t. All time has done is allowed me to see everything from more than one side. All time has done is allow this formerly closed off piece to quietly grow, and in one moment it exploded into every ounce of my life, and I struggle to see how I ever saw my life without it. How I managed to get to where I am without this feeling so present, and heavy, and impossible is beyond me. But I did, right? Not 30 days ago, everything wasn’t… this. My life didn’t feel so polluted. So unsure. How?

I have written before about feeling like I was standing in the dark and life was violently spinning around me while I desperately tried to grab hold of something steady. And that was true. But now? I’m not sure if this is purely hindsight or rose-colored glasses, but within those thoughts I’ve written about before, it feels …temporary? Possible? Like it had to have an end, eventually. All storms end, eventually, right? And even if I could not see that hope in that moment, I knew it would come. I knew I could be honest about how it felt to me in that moment, because in the end, eventually, the hope comes to steady it all and allows me to breathe again.

But this? This is uncharted.

That’s really the only word I can think to explain what it feels like to be in this place. Uncharted. There’s no roadmap. It’s ambiguous and confusing. Really, I just would give almost anything to be able to talk to the one person that helped me though this entire thing the first time, in real time, but I cannot.

So it feels so lonely.

It feels impossible.

It feels uncharted.

So what the hell do I do now?

I don’t know. Who does, really. If I knew that, I would not be typing all this out.

I can, however, take all I have in me and force it to work for me instead of against me. Will it work? Hell if I know. But the way I made it through this initial situation when I was younger, and the way I learned to cope with literally anything was, in short, shove it away and do your absolute best to convince everyone you’re fine.

“This is fine. I’m fine. You can’t touch me. You’ll never see how much this hurts. You can break me.”

Only this time it’s me against me. This seemingly never-ending wave of memory and hurt crashes against me constantly. I never had a chance doing this on my own. So instead, I take all that same energy that I used to survive before, and turn it against myself… sort of. This time, instead of me convincing the world that I’m ok and untouchable, it looks a little more like me telling friends “I know this has to be a lie. But I feel like you abandoned me. This is impossible. This onslaught of pollution into my life will never let up so I can breathe and find out how to move forward. If I did not have this faith that I have, I would have given up on this fight.”

This time, when the only thing I can hear is how impossible and unending this is, I meet that energy with the same force, I call it the lie it is, and I just… try.

It doesn’t feel like a lie when I tell them. It feels like the truth. And thank God I can be a stubborn ass because I know I’ve believed differently for 20+ years. I have known that hope is coming. Even when my mom died, I knew that good would come again. That my faith tells me that good wins in the end, and that, eventually, hope returns.

It feels like a lie, for now. And the only thing that feels true right now, in this minute, is that this will never stop. This won’t get better. But believing just the opposite has gotten me this far, so I’ve either been telling myself a lie for most of my life, or I’m telling myself a lie now. It seems far more likely that I’m telling myself a lie now, despite every part of me screaming to my brain how that’s not true at all.

So… what now? I’ll keep blabbing it out in thought circles where I can, to anyone who will listen. I’ll keep calling and texting friends. I will keep talking about how all these lies feel like the only real truth, but I’m leaning into my stubborn spirit and asking them to hold me up until I can breathe again.

For now, I don’t argue with them when they say they hear me. I don’t argue with them when they say they care. When they say they cared in the minute when it all crashed back into my head. I listen to people that have, in the past, only spoken truth into my life. Despite what my brain would have me believe right now, I also know they’ve not lied before.

I didn’t have this many people to speak such truth into my life before. While I’ve lost the one person who got me through it before, I have since gained so many more. So, while I am walking through all of this again, as a much older me, I also have a whole lot of truth in my life I never had before. If it was true then, it’s true now too. How do I know? Well, right now I don’t. But it’s easier to settle on the thought that it’s still true than it is to settle on the idea that I’ve believed a lie for most of my life.

It feels uncharted. And maybe it just needs to for a little while. Until then, I guess, I’m out here tossing words wherever they’ll land, desperate for the truth to feel true again.

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Dearest @Jezliee,

I’m so grateful that you’ve decided to reach out here today. Beyond the confusion that the situation brings right now, you are here, asserting that something feels odd and might be wrong. You words are so strong and powerful.

Our mind sometimes contains these uncharted territories, but putting the veil off can be a real shock. We look at it and wonder: how on Earth this could have been there for so long without me even noticing, or living my life as if it was part of a completely different world? It’s scary and extremely confusing - looking back and reviewing the most major and significant aspects of our life as the foundations seem to be brutally shaken. Everything is so fragile suddenly.

Your post has reminded me exactly the moment when I’ve started to remember a random memory of abuse of when I was a kid. It was so real, so present, and so freaking confusing. I knew with every single cell of my body that it was real. I could feel it deeply. I started then to see myself, little, actively denying that reality. I would hear or see abuse depicted in movies, at school or any other random circumstance, but I would always have this absolute feeling that this happens to others, not me. Not in my “family”. Now that I’ve dig this pit for years, I still wonder how I could be so detached from even just the mention of childhood abuse.

But the consequences of that realization years ago? It felt like my entire world was collapsing. It was a brutal confrontation between what I thought was true and what I, somehow, always knew was there but wasn’t ready to acknowledge. Suddenly it feels like everything is a lie, even ourselves! What we used to do, say, believe in. I felt like I was walking on this fragile foundation for so long without even noticing how dangerous it was. How can that be?

Just like you, my first reaction was to turn the blame against me - old patterns are hard to get rid of. But the truth is, Jez, what happened through all these years was about surviving and nothing else. I moved forward to, all the time. It’s actually my first reaction, still, when something hurts me. There are times when we have to move forward because slowing down is unbearable. It doesn’t mean it’s unbearable forever, but at the moment it is. I haven’t failed myself, nor did you. We did what we could with the means that were available to us.

When something wrong happens and stays away for such a long time, it is because we couldn’t process the reality of it at the time. Our mind is this fantastic and complex protector at times. It puts a veil in front of our eyes when the intensity of something is too intense to process physically and emotionally. It’s not your fault or your responsibility. It’s a survival instinct. But when years have happened between the memory and the realization, it’s hard to be grateful for this survival mechanism. It’s a very bittersweet pill to swallow.

Now that your life context is different - as you’ve mentioned, you have people to support you and speak truth into your life. You are not alone. But weirdly enough it adds even more confusion. How the heck can we understand that 2+2+=4 if the entire concept of numbers and additions is something that we have not been introduced to before? It goes the same with love and care applied to situations that feel new to us, that are bringing us into an emotional space that is unknown and confusing. As you have said, this is an uncharted territory. What is unknown requires time and patience to be understood. In your situation, it sounds that raw feelings are preceding the words that you could put on it. It’s a raw experience that happens within. Until you manage to progressively put words on it, it is likely to be confusing. The more you speak, the more you express yourself no matter with how many detours, the more you will approach the essence of how you feel and manage to translate it verbally. Maybe a part of you actually knows which words need to be used, but you don’t feel ready yet to use them as it would feel like breaking down even more. And now there’s also these friends and loved ones in the picture! What if they had just loved a version of yourself that was a lie? After all, it certainly feels like you can’t even trust your mind, so how could someone else do? Well, because they don’t have to deal with this inner turmoil. They see more truth than we do during times of vulnerability because they don’t have to deal with all the raw feelings that we do have.

Again, it is completely okay and it makes sense. You definitely have friends sitting by your side, ready to walk on that path with you, and you do have control over how you allow people to be there.

I believe your present and your past are not either lies or truth. There’s both in them. The confusion you feel may stems from a search for meaning while what what you are experiencing right now is mostly about feeling. There is a right time for both. You seek understanding, reason, logic because the storm is brutal so it needs to make sense asap. However, it can be very damaging to establish truths out of how we feel, as tempting as it is. There is truth in the way you feel. It is part of your experiences and it is valid. It is real. It exists. But when you ask yourself if you were lying to yourself before, or if you are lying to yourself now, it is about the meaning you can develop from those feelings. Please always make sure that when you do so, you take in account the actual circumstances of your life, whether it was in the past or is about your present. Because through all of this, there is a need to be fair to yourself. What does not serve you or doesn’t aim to help you heal, or grow, is a lie.

The truth is: you get to create that meaning over time, and it is not something that is going to apply as an overall truth either. We humans are so much more complex, and so our experiences. It feels hopeless, but you also know rationally that it is not. Both aspects of your mind and heart are absolutely valid. And when you look at it, it actually makes sense to experience both at the same time. There is this previous vulnerable part of yourself that is very present in your heart. But there’s also the you today, the one that has overcome many obstacles, have grown in many ways, and have found safe people to share their life with.

Unknown territories seem to have no shape, no frontier, no limit. It just makes no sense! But it makes sense to feel lost in it, to feel confused, to wonder if there’s actually a path to take out there, and which one to choose. I may not know exactly how yours is going to be, but what I do know as being true is that it is going to be made with a real foundation of love that so many people have for you, whether they are still in this world or not.

There is truth in the fact that you are not alone.
There is truth in the fact that it is okay to feel the way you do and it makes sense. You are not losing your mind. You are not lost.
There is truth in the fact that you’ve been freaking resilient for so long, and that today is not making you weak either. This is yet another step, another obstacle to integrate into your life and to learn to put where it belongs in order to make sense to you.
There is truth in the fact that your experiences have proved to you that, indeed, hope wins, good wins, even when there’s a deep temptation to throw it all away. There is no better proof of that truth than your presence and existence. You are here. There is breath in your lungs. That alone is a constant expression of hope, of potential.
There is truth in the fact that you are here today, alive, breathing, and that uncharted territories do hold a potential for healing. Please make sure to be supported through it all. There’s no foreign place of the mind that we ever deserve to explore just on our own, especially if it makes us feel deeply vulnerable.

You are so loved, Jez. I believe this is likely to be the beginning of yet another grief for you. But there is potential there for an even more serene version of yourself at the end of that road. One that you will meet with peace, confidence, tears maybe but also a deep sense of gratitude for yourself. For all these years, you’ve actually taken care of yourself without even knowing it.

Silence can be loud in these unknown places. Make sure to let it be filled by the loving words that people you trust have for you. With time, the lies and hurtful voices will be quiet again as you will feel whole, complete. Until then, gather all the resources you need. You are allowed to ask for help. You are allowed to take your time to learn to walk again instead of running this time.

You set the pace and we will follow. This desert isn’t meant to be explored without the presence of love. :hrtlegolove:

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My friend. Even in all those words I typed, you still cut through them all and got right to the point.

Thank you doesn’t seem big enough to express how heard and seen your reply makes me feel. What a light you are!

It really was a completely different world. It was this whole piece I knew was there, but I was so sure I was past it all. So, so, so, sure. Turns out walking away and no longer having general life reminders doesn’t actually mean your past anything! Just… means you’re not in it. Feeling like a lie is exactly it.

“They see more truth than we do” is a very needed reminder. It definitely helps rebuild the bridge toward trust again. Not only have I been thrown into all of this mess, but it’s been breaking down so many presumptions I had about who I am, and how I operate on the world, and what I need from others.

All of the things I need from the people that I know have spoken truth into my life have shifted. I’m seeing just how high my “I don’t need anyone, I can do this on my own just fine” wall really was. It was insurmountable. Obviously, that was not really a healthy answer. But having one random minute crash through it and destroy it to dust doesn’t seem very healthy either. At least not right now.

As I’ve been thinking about your reply today. I just keep picturing younger me sitting in the thick of it. I keep thinking about how isolating, and how desperately I tried to just… be ok. To move on. And how now, I can tell that little version of me that we did make it through. Maybe we haven’t moved on yet, I mean clearly I have not.

But we did make it out. And even though I never thought I’d be in this position, now I have a whole lot of truth I can take with me as I walk back in it, and help that little version of me.

It’s funny that you mentioned walking vs running. I spoke with someone else, and told him a story about a car accident I was in when I was a teen. Since I was driving, my mom told me “you have to get back in a car and drive. You can’t stay scared of this. You have to get in the car.” And she was right for that situation. That one needed to be met head on, with urgency.

But now both you, and he, have told me basically the same thing. “Hey. Maybe not this time. Maybe you don’t need to jump back in so quickly.”

You’re right. I can set the pace. But I’m so thankful right now for people who will stand in front of me and say “hey um… you can slow down too. That’s ok.”

Thank you, friend. Really.

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Hey Jezlie,

Your words are so powerful in every aspect, of anger, frustration, fear and confusion its like a massive pool of everthing all wrapped into one its no wonder you need to get those thoughts out.
Its clear you have been dreadfully hurt and my goodness I am so sorry that, that happened, I wish I had the amazing words that the wonderful Micro has for you (if only) but there is a couple things I do know so I will pass on them on even if you have heard them here a million times, this time they are just for you.
Whatever happened to you, you did not deserve, you deserved and deserve to be treated like the amazing and beautiful person that you are. You are loved, You are so Special and you deserve nothing less that happiness. Please use this wall as often as you need in order to get these thoughts out so that you can hopefully free yourself a little.
Much Love Lisalovesfeathers :heart:

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Lisa! Thank you so much friend! Your reply really means a lot to me! <3 you can never hear that you’re loved enough! Thank you for taking tome out of your day to reply to me!

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