My past is my present. Or more accurately; their past is my present. D.I.D. is a complex coping mechanism where the file cabinets of my past contain dusty files that are old by years but new to me. These files are pulled out and opened in a number of ways.
I have a flashback. Something triggers a file cabinet to open; a smell, a touch, a glance, a sound. A drawer flies open, a dusty file is shoved in my face, and I am in the exact moment. I can feel him grabbing me, I can smell his aftershave, I can see the hate in his eyes, and I can hear the sound of his footsteps. I am there. Yes, this is just a memory but it feels all too real and many times it is new to me. This can happen anywhere and anytime; at home, at work, in a car.
I have a nightmare while sleeping. It seems that these occur more frequently when I neglect the other "parts" of me. It's the same as a flashback; the sensations are real and in the present. It unnerves my husband when I wake up screaming, punching, kicking, terrified and it takes a moment to return to the present.
An alter and I have a conversation. We discuss, matter of fact, their past and it infringes on my present. Suppose you learn that an old friend passed away a few years back. Are you less sad to hear of their death just because time has passed? Probably not. Perhaps you even have a greater sadness because you missed hearing the news and grieving when it happened. So despite the time that has passed, many files are new to me and the feelings, the abuse, and the grief are lived in real time.
I spent years pretending that nothing happened. I thought it normal that I could remember few events of my childhood. I thought it normal to have voices in my mind and an unbelievably poor memory because I missed hours, even days because I was dissociated and someone else was running the show. I ignored the physical scars that covered my body. It wasn't until I was forced to have a c-section because physically I could not give birth to my daughter naturally because of such extensive scar tissue that I began to unravel and participate in my past.
So here I dissect their past and merge it with my own present. In therapy I talk, re-live, feel, and give credit to their work of protecting me. It is a bitch of a process. I get frustrated because I don't feel that I am making any progress. I feel stuck. In the past. However, in my frustration I am learning to see that re-living, acknowledging, and embracing the past is the quickest route to the present.
And even the future.
“Shall I Crucify Your King?” #UNITE Linky
22 hours ago