I took care of Beltane by trying my best to forget it. That’s why I didn’t mention it last month! Didn’t make it go away, however. Rats.
Here’s some e-mail correspondence on that subject between me and GhostWolf, an old friend.
So I wrote:
F U C K
Once again, I thought Beltane was a month away. But that is Memorial Day. I was wondering why I was spacey and all over the place. Why can’t I get that right, after all these years????
And he answered:
Well, maybe it’s because your life is so full of other things and that the triggering events are so far in the past now that they don’t come up every. damned. day. like they did when they were recent?
That’s true for me; I too get spacey around some of the significant dates and realize why afterwards with 20/20 hindsight. Heck, it’s gotten to where I’m so involved in just living and the day to day stuff that I’ve forgotten my own birthday more than once. 🙂
I actually like that; because at least for me, it tells me my consciousness and day to day life are no longer influenced by those events – that’s encouraging to me. The subconscious and body, though, remember, and that drives the spaciness as best as I can tell and from what I’ve observed over the years experientially and with what others have shared.
When it does happen, i don’t have a care in the world other than wondering why I’m such a klutz, and considering what could happen (and has happened in the past), that’s actually pretty doggoned good. Occasonally, I have to clamp down on myself for denigrating myself for the klutziness; it IS the outward expression of real horrors that occurred. PTSD anyone?
“Getting it right” though. Ummmm, no – sorry, Jean. We were injured, severely, and that leaves wounds. Yeah, wounds heal, and the common approach is, “Yeah, it’s over, it’s done, get on with life.”
I call bullshit on that.
My burn scars are an example. That happened a little over 60 years ago. I don’t even think about it most of the time. I get reminded though when something happens to irritate the scars, or someone sees them and asks about them. I could get the scars dermal-abraded so that they were not so obvious; but they’d still be there. NOTHING can take away the fact of the original damage, and no miracle of modern medicine can remove the traces of that. Period.
Same thing with the mental and emotional side of injuries – even if those are “just” mental injuries. Nothing can remove the injury; nothing can remove the traces of the injury. Those traces remain with us all of our lives.
To this day, some of those traces suddenly get in my face.
Out of control fire, films (Hollywood or otherwise) of people burning, news of the same) – yeah. I shake and get sick to my stomach. News of any kind of abuse, I get physically ill.
Another example? Things suddenly put in front of me by well-intentioned people who want me to see a pic on their phone or read something in a magazine. Instant Draw Back on my part accompanied by intense defensive/aggressive posture. It hurts people deeply because it appears that I am intensely angry for something about which they had no idea, AND it appears to them – because of my body stance and facial expressions – that I am about to strike them, which is NOT something I would ever do. They have no way of knowing that, based on their experiences with others.
“Get it right?” Resolve the issue? No. That trigger is still there, but being aware of it, I can and do clamp down on it. NO ONE can ever “get it right” – that would take absolute perfection, absolute 24/7 control – and no one is capable of that. So why do we hold ourselves to a very unrealistic goal that only results in our feeling like a failure, with consequential pain, guilt, self-denigration, and lowering of self-esteem?
Because we are “supposed to.” That’s what all cultures teach; we are “supposed to” overcome our failings, our weaknesses; the goal is all-important, and failure is not an option if we want to be an accepted member of society.
Who died and made society gawd, anyways?
The real goal, in my not so humble opinion, is simply to recognize the trigger when it occurs, figure out (and that can take a while and THAT IS OK) what causes it, and figure out how to handle it when it fires off again.
The goal – PERFECTION – is unattainable, period. Getting damned close to that goal IS attainable, and you know what? That’s pretty doggoned good 🙂
We survivors need to accept each other, warts, imperfections and all (unlike mainstream society.) We help each other by sharing experiences, sharing perspectives, sharing insights. No one of us can realize and see ALL experiences, perspectives, insights, and that in part is why we share.
Simply said, friendships last for years because we do not hold each other to that unrealistic standard of perfection. Far from it; we hold each other to be ourselves, warts and all, and give each other the room to grow.