Posted by: Marie | April 11, 2009

(43) This is a good place

Post #43
[Journal entry written to my therapist on Sunday, June 22, 2008]

Hi, Mark –

I am amazed at how easy (well, relatively easy) implementing my “good habits” plan has been.  It has continued to be a matter of simply adjusting my routines to include the new habits.  I haven’t been struggling with the self-sabotage-triggering thoughts.  Once in a blue moon, I’ll have a quick moment when “bad things happen when I’m attractive” terror flash across my brain, but then it is gone.

I’m actually starting to relax into the rhythm of my plan’s methodology – I’m enjoying the new experiences.  In fact, when you see my status print-out this week, please notice that my new habits for July include: start working on my consulting business again (5 hrs/wk), wear perfume, and attend two mixed-gender social events per month.  I’m ready to get back into living life again!

(Now, please know that does not mean I’m ready to stop seeing you.  I might come less frequently, but I would still like to know I have regularly scheduled opportunities to brag a little bit about my successes, and to hash out the confusing parts of all these new experiences with you, okay?)

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I even let my hairstylist cut some layers into my hair this last time so that it has a better shape and lays nicer.  She has been asking to do that for the last year or two, but I was too scared of change.  So, she about fainted when I suggested it.  She said something like . . “Sheesh . . I’m getting so I don’t know you!  I suppose that next time you’ll walk in here with some boldly colored polish on your toenails . . . like maybe even bright RED . . wouldn’t that be a shocker!!”

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So . . . I heard back from Rev. D this week.  He responded much like I thought he would – I expected that he wouldn’t have any news to offer.  However, now that I’ve asked the question and gotten the answer, I feel like that is one loose end that is tied up.  I’m really glad I asked – Rev. D is about 80-years-old now, so I doubt I would have had too many other opportunities.  I think I would have regretted not asking – I needed to ask.

I gained some insight from his sentence, “It is true that Satan himself can often fill our minds with thoughts that are impure . . .”  I don’t think it is too big of a leap to believe he was suggesting that my “movie” didn’t necessarily come from an external source.  I believe his statement is accurate, but not relevant to this situation.  Had I gone to him for counseling (instead of to you), that suggestion would not have facilitated my healing – it would have been further evidence to support my belief that I was foundationally flawed and “bad”.

His statement helps me better understand (and confirms my memory of) the environment in which I grew up – one that would not have supported disclosure of my abuse.  It also causes me to wonder how many other “Marie’s” within our church (locally and globally) have not yet experienced healing due to that mindset.  It also causes me to be grateful for your counseling – specifically for your education, sensitivity and awareness.

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When Rev. D was slow with his reply, it was interesting for me to observe myself reacting to the delay.  I have always known him to be a man of character, so I was very certain that he would respond in a timely manner.  When he didn’t, I tried to give him the benefit of the doubt – he must be busy with something else or he didn’t receive the email.  So, that is why I sent the second email.  If he blew me off twice, I would know I had been wrong about his character – which would have been a rude awakening for me.

I also found myself not really caring too much about his response – I mean, I cared, especially if he could provide information, but I found a great deal of healing in just sending the email.  Taking such a drastic step in support of my own healing, for my own benefit, crystallized and solidified something inside of me.

The idea that I was probably molested became more real and viable, and I found myself feeling at peace with it – the tug-of-war between “it really happened” and “that’s an insane idea” stopped.  It felt like I stepped out from under the weight of the doubt, and even of the memories, when I hit the “send” button.  That is a good place to be.

So, that brings me to the possibility of sending the letter to “X”.  I feel I need to send it.  I need to ask the question.  I really doubt I will receive a response.  So, I wouldn’t be doing it for the response, I would be doing it because I need to ask the question.  I think I would, in the future, regret not asking him while I had the chance.

However, I recognize that, once I send the letter, I can never “undo” sending it.  So, I want to be very sure that I am ready to take responsibility for the impact I will likely have on him.  I am sure my words will have great impact on him and his wife, whether or not my memories are accurate – especially if they are not accurate.

Right now, I intend to send it.  I will wait another week or two just to make sure that my certainty does not waiver.

– Marie


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