It took me almost forty years on this planet to gain any sense of security in my relationships with others. After forty years the bad dreams finally stopped.
When I was very young and given the nick name 'the fozzie' to go along with 'ugly' ad 'stupid' I was told by my granddad that I was the fozzie because my 'real' parents didn't want me so they left me out with the rubbish by the bins where my 'new' mum and dad found me. They took me in because they felt sorry for me.
Sometime later a week, a month, the same day? I can't remember – my uncle Alan began to sexually abuse me. Like all abusers, he gave me the responsibility for keeping his secret, and so made me responsible for my own abuse. He told me that if I was to tell anyone about this new game we were playing that no-one would love me any more; my mum and dad, nan and granddad, aunties, sister and brother would all stop loving me and that my mum and dad would send for the 'men in white coats' to come and take me away.
I came down (was sent down) the stairs from that episode as traumatized as you might imagine and was greeted my my dad and the words “Alright fozz”.
From that moment I knew that I was truly 'the fozzie' and I lived my life accordingly, first trying to gain the approval of my family, and later, after my dad left, turning my back on them as much as I dared. I earned the hatred of my brother and sister in those later years.
The sexual abuse continued until after my dad left, as did the name calling. But even after it was over on the outside, I knew just what I was. And I put myself into plenty of situations to prove it time and time and time again.
By the time I was in my late 30's I'd got to a point where I had stopped all forms of self abuse, including drinking and smoking. My journey on this planet was/is a spiritual one, and through years of prayer and mediation, writing it down and figuring it out, I came to a point where all the pain and uncertainty, and all the traumas of my past could be let go. The process of actually letting go of all of that baggage too a couple of years in itself, but soon enough I came to a point where I could actually understand and forgive those people who had caused me so much harm.
Believe me when I tell you that the joy that a soul feels at such times outweighs the pain that leads it there one-hundredfold! (I speak from memory, sadly, not from current experience.)
And during those two short years, I now realize, all those bad dreams which had plagued me all my life stopped. I didn't have one dream about my mother hating me, not one dream about my brother blaming me or my sister pointing out my many faults. I never once woke up feeling scared of life. Not once!
Those dreams are back now though. Now, at the age of forty-one, I wake up scared and insecure... just like I aways did.
My dad, after he read a short blog about my forgiving him, though the blog didn't say what I forgave him for (some things I held to be private) decided to cut me out of is life without a word. When I eventually fond out why he'd stopped talking to me I tried to reach out and fix things between us. I think though that he expected me to alter my truth somehow, to remove the implication that he was less than perfect from my narrative.
When that didn't happen he , for the second time, cut me out of his life - without a word, but in no uncertain terms; Not one week after telling me that anger could never get in the way of love, he sent back a letter I'd spent weeks on. Just like that. Not a word of why.
And so what I had hoped would be an honest and open exchange, and an opportunity for learning and growth for both of us, came to an end, along with or relationship.
And now here I am again, waking up from bad drams in which my mother hates me, my brother blames and my sister faults me, starting each day with a personal battle for confidence and security. You see, if my dad can turn his back on me, twice, without a word then anyone can.
Worse than that though, they can (and in my subconscious, do) blame me for my fathers actions.
It was something that I did as a child that cause my 'real' parents to abandon me, and made me such a burden to my 'new' family. It was me who did those terrible things that would cause my family not to love me if they only knew. It was me who made life for my whole family so difficult that my siblings had to protect my mother from me.
And so it must be me who has caused such injury to my dad that he can't bring himself to speak to me.
Of course I know that that is wrong! I know that my fathers actions are a reflection of his own inability to face certain truths, and I understand that.
It's up to him to deal with that if he can. I take no further part in any of it. His journey, his problem.
I have my own to attend to.
I'm not sure how I will get back to that place of healing again, but I found it once, I will find it again. - It's telling that throughout much of my adult life, whenever I've found things especially difficult or especially beautiful, I've found myself writing... like now.
I'm not happy right now. I wonder if this is the whole journey – from insecurity, to insecurity. I wonder if the solution lies in being alone. I wonder if the dreams will ever stop for good. I hate waking up scared and inscure every day.
I'm frightened. - It's been a hard journey this far. Will it always bet his hard? Will I have to do all of it alone?