trigger up: clocking in

01/24/2012

trigger warning for: incest, repressed memories, PTSD shit. take care of yourself, this shit is rough. -RD

if the heart is a drum machine, then maybe the part of my brain that tracks trauma is a sun dial, and my body follows in its turn. January is usually a pretty crummy month for me. not only is it the dark heart of winter, but it is also the anniversary of my departure from my father’s house, culminating at the end of the month.
this month started well enough, i spent NYE with several close friends in a city a few hours’ train ride away from my own, and returned home feeling refreshed and renewed, optimistic and planning for the new year. how quickly winter’s darkness returns! my nightmares returned at a frantic pace, a series of anxiety attacks ensued, and i got sick for the 2nd time in <6 weeks (still sick now). i’ve been feeling pretty exhausted and disconnected with only the occasional respite.
here in the Pacific Northwest where winter means an even further reduction in exposure to sunlight as well as an increase in rain, i don’t think that any of these sensations are unusual, mine just so happen to be connected to prior trauma. <shrug> c’est la vie?
i’ve always known that my father was a creeper, and descended from another creeper (my grandfather), and while i’ve been able to remember some of the weird stuff he did (insisting i sit on his lap at an inappropriate age, being super-possessive, treating me more like his girlfriend than his child, attempting to buy my affection, etc), i could never remember actually being molested. in some ways i am pretty fucking grateful for that. a therapist once told me it didn’t really matter if i had been molested by him or not, that he had crossed my boundaries in so many other ways that were so wildly inappropriate. in some ways i am inclined to agree, but i have still wondered what actually happened–if it was him, or someone else, and i still don’t know for certain, probably never will.
last week i was having a bad evening and decided to make myself some pot-infused milk to relax and get back into my body (ah, dissociation!) so i could sleep. it took awhile to take effect but finally i could feel my body again, and decided to masturbate myself to an appropriate level of sleepiness. at first pleasurable feelings ensued, but then out of the ether i started having visions of myself at a much younger age and performing sex acts on a much older man, probably my father. it was all i could do not to scream and wake up my housemates. or it would have been if i could move, but my entire body was frozen and instead i was forced to watch in psychedelic cinema as body parts came up out of the ether. the memories themselves (as i think of them–it’s hard to say if they’re real memories or not) were like a step out of time, some animation sequence, the colors inverted and strange like a hallucination, and much of the images were shrouded in darkness. after a long time of thinking, i finally fell asleep.
in the morning i at first did not recall the vision i had received on the night previous, and began my day as usual, maybe a few minutes late for work. later i felt a wave of panic and anguish wash over me, and i remembered everything as it had passed*. i pinged a friend who had experienced repressed memories, and described what i had seen and experienced. they confirmed some similar sensation of those memories being a step out of time, like no others, without going into too much detail.
my panic gave way to relief in some strange way, as if this half-knowing is a win in and of itself, the mind finally revealing a long-kept secret.
that day i filled out the intake form for a local queer counseling referral service, so hopefully i’ll be back to therapy soon. been thinking for a couple of years that it would be really useful, and this experience only re-confirms that.

-RD

*for clarity’s sake: the events of the previous evening

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One Response to “trigger up: clocking in”

  1. you offer all the time tinctures and talk when i’m stressed out. i do not have the herbal thumb that you do, but you know i’m right next door if you need to vent/think out loud/cry. xo
    or dance stupidly in the living room, too

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