I fell into a chasm today.  I don’t know when but I probably know how.  Being a bridge between the lived experience of being a being so changed by early caregiver relationship trauma (as “they” call it) means I live with a different kind of geography inside of me.  There are breaks where they shouldn’t be.  There are gaps and losses, wishes and hopes smashed, missing pieces,  lost dreams.

Somewhere in all my neuroscientific study today I encountered a piece that said, “60% of Americans experience at least one severe trauma in their lives and 40% don’t.”

I can’t remember where I read that!  Of all the notes I took today I lost the reference for that one.  The most important one it seems to me as four hours after first trying to sleep tonight I am still awake, still struggling.  How is it possible for any one person to go through their entire life without a trauma?

What world does that happen in?

Am I that out of touch?  60% is still a LOT of people.  And there’s us.  Those of us who knew very little that wasn’t trauma when we were little.  At least that was my world for my first 18 years.  I feel like I life on some skinny jut of land out into some foreign dark water where no other life I can see or hear keeps me knowing I have a void inside of me that will not be filled in this lifetime.

I try to study the actualy facts, the neuroscience research that documents this and that and that and this that goes so wrong in the entire developing brain and body of a baby exposed to severe, chronic, unending, unendurable trauma that – indeed – life makes sure we survive.  Thinking in all those cold hard facts seems to have snapped something inside of me, some little warm connection I seem mostly to keep ahold of — that today I lost.  Completely lost.

I am wondering if that kind for dense close cold reading took me far out to sea and then left me there to live or to die.  Yes.  These things do happen.  But I didn’t see this coming.  I didn’t see myself going out with some invisible tide in the ‘abstract’ direction, so far out now when I try to sleep I can’t seem to find my real self anywhere.  Not that I am certain that I HAVE a real self, but I usually have at least some makeshift version of a real self I at least DON’T FEEL LIKE THIS!

All those researchers, psychotherapists, news people, book writers who so seem to have ALL the answers.  If they don’t they seem to be quite sure of themselves and quite content stating whatever small facts their particular focus of study has given to them.

Then.  Here I am.  A continent of discontent — and I now know why — but I don’t think I belong to the group that can PROVE what I know.

I’ll get past this.  I always have found a way to go UP again after I have gone DOWN again.  I think there’s a kind of lesson in how I feel right now.  I was not cautious.  I did not monitor my emotional reality state as I plowed and plowed through information about the insides of all of us.  What does right.  What goes wrong.  I will have to more carefully consider where I am going to take myself and my mind next in my work on this trauma thing.  Carefully consider.


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3 thoughts on “+NOT THE BEST NIGHT OF IT

  1. Dear silly Linda. Put down those books written by twits if you’d ever really meet them and read ‘Meditations’, or ‘Centuries of Meditations’, (depending on the edition), by Thomas Traherne. There’s a copy at archive.org that you can access free — but it’s a book really you should have your own copy. It’s all about the love in/of your Angel Mountain, and crisp apples, and fireweed, and your and my and his inward unflickering light. Silly wabbit. Twits are for kids.

    • I think I have located the writing you speak of


      Thank you.

      Oh, you are so correct.

      I wanted to know the language that speaks of the molecular changes that happened inside my infant mother that consumed her before she could walk. As I read and read the ‘facts’ the lifeblood of myself drained away. The spirit air breathing out of me began to vanish. This was very scary to me, how fast it happened. How invisibly it happened. How easy it was to step off the edge to fall into the very chasm it is my ‘job’ to bridge.

      To me there seems to be some missing element within the writings, within the language of the scientific experts who can describe in words what lies within on those physiological levels of our existence. Dispassionate. I cannot say how the world looks to those people on the other side. But I cannot go over there and try to build this bridge I seek from there.

      This bridge I am building between that world and this one where I have always lived CAN be created with words. But though the researchers intellectually know the genesis words that speak on the molecular level about how our biochemistry interacts with our genetic potential as the whole process is under the sway of the impact our earliest caregivers have on our development, those words as they come out of the minds and pens of scientists seem to steal the life out of me.

      I must hold onto all the life I have. As I have always done. As you and this blog’s readers have done. Have done isn’t good enough I see this morning. DO matters now.

      Perhaps the world around me was in travail last night, and here the new day birthed itself with rain bleeding from heavy clouds. Moisture for our desert earth. My lostness has washed away. And upon reading your swift true words of encouragement I will pick my pen up today, turn around and write from the opposite direction from where I have spent these last few days of my life.

      I know I can find words to write with that come from within the within of me. From within the space between the cells of my body, from within the spaces within the cells, within their molecules — from a place where life lives past where microscopes can go.

      It is we who have been able to always look beyond all the usual places for what sustains life. We crossed over to another side, past where the remnants of humanity that think themselves civilized can understand.

      It is pouring rain again. I can dance between raindrops. We CAN and we DO! This is a process for me of recognizing what I have found, have always found to sustain me –and OH! As I write these words looking out my window to the north there is — of course — the most perfect rainbow.

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