Saturday, February 14, 2015

Oh, the Webs We Weave

On my good days, I can be proactive about my bad days. This weekend, for myself, I've taken my heart to the hills. Inside the hills, I have (at least) some sense of safety, because the contour of the land calmly directs the movement of my eyes. It also comforts my heart, because it gives me the chance to experience what happens when a collision doesn't vaporize everything. Uplift is courageous. Mountains are brave. They change, but they rise. There is erosion, undoubtedly, but there must be contrast in order to recognize the significance of anything.

When I feel safe like this, I can take care of business. I can situate my life just a little bit. I am painfully aware of and unable to repair the deficiencies in my brain chemistry, but I can do small things. I can force my brain through a traumatic pulse in order to, in a sense, reset things. I can awaken my hypothalamus and my amygdala and my pituitary gland; I can frighten and stimulate. I can just go get another tattoo. 

Close my eyes, smile, and let my brain buzz with the needle. It's interesting. The sequence of my life is interesting. I learned about the neurobiology of trauma from a TED talk given by Dr. Rebecca Campbell. Three months later, I randomly attended a Unitarian church in East Lansing with a friend, only to find that I was standing right in front of Dr. Campbell and had the opportunity to properly thank her. Now, I feel like I can manipulate my brain in small ways while it continues to work behind my back, or I suppose, above it.

It is no secret that I internalize my trauma, and that it is too heavy for me right now. It is also very obvious that I adopt everyone else's trauma, because it feels better to share the load even if it makes things heavier. I acknowledge these things. I will also note that my deep awareness of our trauma is likely turning out to be extremely unhealthy for me right now. However, I am more afraid of ignoring our stories, because that is the root of my wound. It's what stings the most. For me, at least, the events themselves were easier to survive and forgive than the events that followed. It is why people wonder if I ever have victory (I do). It is why I still drag my baggage around with me ten years later. I won't ignore it. Ignoring it is betrayal of self. Ignoring my trauma is ignoring my need; my need to feel safe, and my need to be heard and believed and validated and taken care of and loved, loudly loved, nonetheless.

So, I understand your frustration, outsiders and insiders alike. I am also frustrated. It's unbearable to carry my own story only to find that I've taken on the stories of everyone else as well. It's even worse to realize that, while I once believed that things would get better and for a time things did, even my ancient story can still take sharp turns for the worse. And I can't do any more sharp turns for the worse right now. I won't survive another one. Not when the joke is on me. It's cruel, and it seems like further evidence that I've overstayed my welcome in this life.

And I have fucked up. I didn't realize it until now, but I have royally fucked up and I'm so sorry because I never meant to. I didn't see it coming. I have spun myself an impossible web. Several months ago, I was talking with a friend about the webs she had been spinning in her life, but she was building a network for the betterment of everyone; I have spun myself into a corner. I am the spider and I am the fly. I've trapped myself with carbon silk thread that, regardless of elasticity, is stronger than steel and I am weak. 

Scratch that, I'm not a fly. I'm a moth. A Gypsy Moth. A gypsy that has spun her own chains, how nice, because I realize now that I can't get better if I continue to be the version of myself that is a gypsy. Or, if I continue to be myself.

It really looks like I'm running, doesn't it? I am. But it's not because I'm scared. It's because I'm terrified of being anything other than a nomad right now. I'm terrified of stagnation, but I've trapped myself. I'm also terrified of being unreliable. I've made commitments and I must travel to the locations that those commitments require. It's as simple as that, isn't it?

I may only have one viable option. No, I have no viable options, but I may only have one close-enough option. And close enough has never been good enough, and that sentence to settling terrifies me even more. The fact remains that in order to get the care that I evidently require, I will have to stay in one place for a while. I don't want to keep feeling this way, but I don't want to kill the part of me that wanders. 

Because that will kill the rest of me.

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