This past few weeks have been some of the most heartbreakingly sad and frustrating for me. I’m not sure exactly which events started the ball of string to unravel, but today it felt like it was completely unwound and I couldn’t find the end.
This week saw #metoo flood Facebook. As a silent victim of abuse over the years, I wanted to write “Me Too” but I didn’t. I couldn’t. That would mean looking at and confronting my past, which is SO neatly packed away in lots and lots of old suitcases, hidden where I don’t have to talk about them or look at them. The thought of people commenting “You too?” or messaging me about it stopped me in my tracks. Those suitcases are labelled ‘I don’t want to breathe a word about it’ and I would like to leave them where I don’t ever have to look at them again.
Fast forward to this weekend when we had people talking about wanting to come visit. Simple right? It’s a simple yes / no answer. Unfortunately I have a VERY triggered past with the would-be visitors. I am so uncomfortable around them. My radar and ‘keep me safe’ alarms go off the charts, anxiety kicks in, and flight mode is put into ‘full throttle and escape at all costs’ mode… anddddd that shit’s not pretty. I have been a supportive human. I have asked nicely not to have them here. I have been silent and ignored it. I have tried every which way to be polite and welcoming, but I just can’t do it. The history I have with them just repeats itself, and repeats and repeats and repeat. It’s the same abuse, just in many, many different forms. When I think I’ve broken one form, I hear a knock on the door that the suitcases are hidden behind, and hey presto!, a huge disgusting black cloud of epic grossness happens.
It was a very reactive conversation this week which started me thinking about all of the above. I was talking to a friend, and mentioned to her to her that the Harvest Moon, which had happened while I was in Las Vegas recently, had messed with me royally and that there had been arguments and all kinds of crazy things going on. I’m a lunar child and still to this day get a little hyper when it’s full. I gave her no detail of the events or what was said, however she quickly replied- ‘When there are arguments, you're reacting to seeing something you see in another, in yourself.’ (insert eye roll from me). I think I jokingly asked her if she’s a fortune cookie, and, as she always does, she smiled and told me to go look it up. She also sent me a link to ready further about the idea that you can heal someone else by healing yourself at the same time. My ego yelled “What a crock of ______” while a quieter part of me whispered, ‘go read it, it can’t hurt right?’.
I refused to look at it at first. Thankfully, curiosity got the better of me and I eventually read it. I learnt that I can heal you through me, and me through you, just by working out what triggered me? EASY! But, to do that I needed to sit and contemplate what had triggered me and why the other person was being blamed. The universe has one hell of a sense of humour. It made me see that there's a whole lot of suitcases packed with pieces of my past that I have never ever told a soul about, and keeping them hidden was actually starting to impact my everyday life. Last night during our discussions about these visitors, my husband was prompted to ask exactly that. “You HAVE told me everything haven’t you?” It was very painful for me to reply, “no.”
So, it all came to a head last night with the news of these people wanting to visit. It looks like those suitcases are going to need to be unpacked with some professional help in the coming weeks, months and years. I know now that it needs to happen regardless of how weak I think this makes me. What a failure this all makes me feel like. My ego is trying to smooth everything over again as it always does, but this time I mustn’t let it. I need to be ready to deal, heal and learn.
Two years ago, when I started on my self-development journey, my cousin asked me if I was sure that I was ready to do this. “Of course” I said! “I don’t have that much stuff to work through, I’ll be right”. My cousin replied “Be careful. Once you start, it’s like Pandora’s Box. There’s no closing the lid, there’s no going back and if you resist, the universe will bury you. If you’re ready for that, then I wish you the very best of luck” I remember giggling and thinking, I’m fine, there’s really not that much stuff I need to sort out. I think I’m a good, nice person. It’ll be a breeze.”
It’s time to get the suitcases out.
Julie Clyde is a Creative Artist. Her company, Julie Clyde Creative, leads the charge of brand design internationally for entrepreneurs and creates unique artistic pieces. She is a brand disruptor, public speaker, brand motivator, artist, wife and mum. She's a passionate entrepreneur and sees this variety in her life as the zing for what drives her creativity. Julie's blog series 'Discovery of Self' explores how you can learn to love and accept who you are from the inside out.