Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Survived
















Hi Everyone, I hope you are doing well, I am doing ok today. Today I had my monthly visit with my counselor like I have too to get my medicine. During our visit we got talking about some of my family members. She went back to my intake notes that you have to do at first to get your medicine and read my family history. She was not my first counselor so she did not know I suffered abuse from my mother when I was a child and it has never come up. So when she asked me about the abuse it stirred up much pain and tears. When my mother got psychotic she would do things like lock me down the cellar, lock me outside. It was always like walking on eggshells around her. I was always afraid to go home because I did not know what I would experience. She flipped out at one of my birthday parties and my friends all had to leave. My Dad comforted me that day though. Once she chased me with a hammer but I was a teenager with a car and I got in it and sat at the end of my street all night because my Dad was at work. One of the worst memories I have is her trying to commit suicide in front of me when I was ten years old. My father was at work that day, and she was in her room drinking whiskey and then decided to take some pills. My sister called an ambulance and they pumped her stomach right in front of all of us. As I spoke about these memories my counselor was showing pain on her face. I told her I was even on a local talk show here in Boston about the abuse with Tom Burgeron. My friend had written him a letter about all that I had been through and they called me to be on a show about Schizophrenia. I did alright but I was still young and naive about Mental Illness. I have been so happy lately living in my forties that those memories have been buried so deep. I never cried about them before until today. The mind is kind and only gives you what you can handle. She said something kept you strong. I said I know it was my Dad. He lost his father at the age of 11 and had to leave school and support his family. Then he served in the Korean War. Then married a women who became very sick and he was left to care for six children on his own. He did such a good job of being both mother and father, we were all well taken care of by him. You can read more about him on my DDD blog. He was once offered a position from the Boston Globe where he worked to have a job where he could travel and have an expense account. He told my brother Jim that he wanted to take it and give up us children for adoption. But he did not, he stayed and survived everyday with us. I miss him so much, he was gone to soon. I am grateful though to have had such a wonderful man as a father. I am also grateful that my mother got better and we were all able to forgive and have a loving relationship. My Anxiety attacks started when I first lived with Pete, it was because I was in a safe place and it was like my mind finally had a place to release all the damage from the trauma. My counselor also said most families don't survive through things like this. I am so glad we all have. As I walked out the door she said "Janet be proud of yourself everyday". I said I will be even more now as the tears were still flowing. They are flowing as I write this but it is good to face that pain and get it out in order to heal. I chose this song because my strength is that of the tiger. It also reminds me of my friend Gina and how we danced to this song the night her and her boyfriend were in a car accident. He died and once again I had to survive a painful experience. My counselor shared with me a book she uses to help trauma clients. It is called Trauma and Recovery. I am going to buy it and share it with all of you. I forgot about the trauma of living with a person with Mental Illness and that should be apart of what this blog is about. I know it will give you some tools on how to heal after experiencing trauma. May you all find the strength of a tiger when life hands you more than you can bear. I am going to go to bed now and finish crying as I listen to my mp3 player and wake up refreshed. Thanks for visiting my blog, Take Care, Janet

2 comments:

  1. This is an excellent book that I HIGHLY recommend. I hope that it gives you some understanding and compassion for yourself...it did for me. Take care.

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