I am not fully here. I realized it when I did not feel the expected release that happened in our lives on 12/26/19. So rather than work on cataloging our communication in search of what I did wrong to deserve a strangulation attack, I am going to be present. Speak to what I am about today. These are stories from a #strangulationsurvior .
I had this idea in my head that I would have this massive tearful release, and while I did let a few tears out, there was no waterfall of tears. Mentally I know what just happened, I was getting the opportunity to step away from a massive amount of debt. $65K worth of debt I have carried for almost five years since this all happened. It’s supposed to feel like winning the lottery type of feeling when you get a fresh start. But I felt nothing.
It’s been only fourteen days, but still nothing I feel numb. It’s the first time I have really tuned in to recognize that my ability to be present, to feel alive today, has been impacted severely. I am a monotone. I haven’t wanted to feel anything. Or rather feeling in my life today would still be incredibly painful, so I have learned not to.
My daughter is growing older; she sees more, hears more, and feels more. I think it is going to be impossible for her not to know one day that the mother of her beloved brother and sister almost stole her mother from her. I can’t pretend nothing happened, something major did happen to me. Being strangled is awful.
In honor of my be more present challenge, I see today that I have avoided being present because it hurts, and it is stressful. So I do things like keep make myself very, very busy. I distract myself with yoga, surfing, cleaning; you name it anything but to sit and be present with my life. Being treated by my step kids the way they are treating me now is so hard to swallow. There are two distinctly different stories between the two of them.
It will be five years this year since it happened. A long-time, right? How could it possibly impact us still? I ask myself all the time? Well, my daughter misses her big sister, who left us just before Christmas 2017. It was almost the last day was saw her too. There’s that. Oh, and that her education has been thrown away from over 115 absences that the high school did nothing about. That’s an entirely different chapter, though.
There is the fact that with our “best friends,” we still have not had a discussion directly with us nor did they show any concern whatsoever not even once did they call to ask if I was ok from the multiple brain traumas I received from being attacked and strangled. Holidays are always reminders because we spent several with them for sure a mad, sad thing. How could you not call? Brain trauma. Incredible.
We are several years into not speaking with my husband’s son’s GF. She has chosen a side and decided we are the problem She moved here from across the country without telling her parents at 18; she lived with my husband’s son at his mothers until that didn’t work anymore. They were just about to do it the right way, have her speak to her parents say goodbye, move her but not together and date. After his mother attacked me, he moved out and moved her out in with him, and it’s been six years.
So for almost four years, she has not spoken to us. Initially, she told us that she could not believe that I was doing this to the family, trying to financially sabotage the family like this. It is clear that there is zero appreciation for what I went through because what sort of person acts this way to someone who survived strangulation. Pretend it didn’t happen to me say I made it up and faked my injuries, say we played a part in my getting attacked, take a stand against us and try to pull your stepson with him. Tragic. This is not loving.
So I find myself disappointed feeling today with what is and what has been getting in the way of my ability to feel present. I have practiced and perfected the art of not feeling, not responding, not engaging, not being here because here hurts still.
But awareness is half the battle. I am encourage with my desire to be present in this #writing space. To share not only what happened but to share how we are dredging through it because there is no other way of describing what we are doing, we are dredging the bottom out of our lives and laying a new foundation. This is required I believe in healing from trauma. You lose your old life.
I once had a boss that was like a Dad too, and while I was going through what was previously my most awful life event, divorce. He said to me, “If you find yourself walking through hell, just keep walking.” I say just keep dredging. No, our lives are not fully recovered from what happened to us, but I believe in our ability to heal, and as long as we are moving forward just a little bit, we are making progress.
I am going to be patient with myself. I know parts of myself will get feeling back. I don’t know if anything will make us feel better about my husband’s kids other than healing the broken relationships, but we still have to try and be happy while they are broken. We still have a family unit us three, and it is cozy, warm, and beautiful. We love and miss our other members always.
Being present, fully feeling your life, and accepting all parts as perfect, even the shitty parts and accepting these specifically as the lessons and reason why we are here is to master them changes everything.
What am I to learn from this? Growth, if we are not growing, we are stagnating, and that is not happy. I want happy so bring it. I can grow through anything.