Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Processing Fears Of Inner Child

So many of my incest issues have been healed and no longer influence my day-to-day life that I am always surprised when the inner child and the fears that she carries rise up again. As a survivor, (Maybe everyone does this, I don't know.) I have fears that I face and release quite often. The thoughts come and go. I acknowledge them and let them pass on without reacting to them. Those thoughts are no longer issues or triggers for me.

On long trips, like our Gettysburg, PA trip, my inner child sometimes gets the upper hand and acts out. As an incest survivor who grew up with a controlling, dictator, possibly narcissistic father, I have an irrational fear that is still pretty big sometimes of being out of control of my own life and decisions. This fear comes up on long driving trips where there is speed and lots of lanes of traffic, especially in big cities that I don't know or when it is dark and raining as it did several times on our trip.  For whatever reason, Daniel plays into my fears too. I talked with him yesterday and he didn't realize that I was reacting out of fear. I guess he just thought I was being bitchy and controlling. I don't want to focus on his part in our little drama. That doesn't help me to figure out me and my inner child. Focusing on someone else is just a way to keep from looking at my part in the drama, which accomplishes nothing in stopping the drama from happening again.

This processing may take me some time to get through because of the grief that gets added on to the other feelings that came up during the trip. I have to find a way to assure my inner child that she is safe, that I will always do what is in my power to protect her. She is not defenseless like I was with the incest and emotional abuse from my dad when she was little. I am an adult and can protect myself and her. I did let my husband know that his behavior lead me to feel that my feelings weren't important. I need to trust my husband's driving skills more too. I need to tell him when he scares me instead of holding it in and hoping it will go away. He is not a mind reader.

Grief always comes along after an issue like this because of the losses involved. Sometimes the grief comes for a day, sometimes for several days. Today I don't ignore the grief. I acknowledge it for the heavy, dark feeling that it is. I feel it until it goes away, until the next time. I grieved for much of my childhood with the adult responsibilities and the unchildlike behavior that was expected of me by the adults in my life. I called it sadness then and knew it was my constant companion at least from the age of 7. Today I know that sadness for the grief of a small child who had so many losses in her young life. This grief is another sign that something was seriously wrong in my childhood at an early age. The abuse didn't start when I was 11 years old. Something happened to that small child of three or younger that I simply do not have the memories of. Grieving is healing that is necessary to move on, to grow. Ignoring grief doesn't make it go away. More grief just gets added on top of that grief that you already carry. For the first time in my life, I recognize grief and even welcome it because I know it means I am healing and letting go of another layer of abuse instead of holding the grief inside to eat away at me.

Being at Gettysburg and visiting the actual battlefield after the reenactment was a humbling experience. I am grateful for the experience and for the processing that is going on right now. It is sometimes painful but the experience is also a necessary part of my healing. As I said in the chatroom of the radio program last night, "In payment for the present pain of healing, I have more moments of joy, laughter and peace in my life today." I talked a little about my processing on the radio program Butterfly Dreams-What is Freedom last night. Here is the link if you are interested in listening:


Last night's show was a special two-hour program. I am not on until the last 20 minutes or so. I missed most of the first hour of the show myself because of a new meditation group that my friend and I went to for the first time last night. I miss meditating with a group. Group meditations seem so much more powerful than just doing it by myself. I hope this group works for me even though it means I will come in late for each of the Monday evening Butterfly Dreams radio programs. In case you miss the live shows, each of the Butterfly Dreams shows are archived for later listening. I learn so much from Patricia McKnight's programs that start at 8:00 p.m. CST in the U. S. on Mondays, Wednesdays and with Debra Mize on Thursday evenings. I hope you will check out the programs.


CW Seymore said...

I loved this blog. I too have overcome so much and yet I find that sometimes that inner fear comes rushing back into my present life. I appreciate all your support and for your tireless efforts is speaking about childhood abuse and survivor issues.

Patricia Singleton said...

CW, Thank you. Yes, we have both healed so much. You are very welcome. Supporting other survivors is so important to me. It brings a purpose to surviving the abuse.

triciagirl62 said...

Patricia, as you know we did have a great show the other night, but want to let you know, THIS BLOG IS ROCKIN!!! I absolutely love the way you share about YOUR PART IN THE DRAMA. We don't always easily accept our responsibility for some of the issues. we lay it off on they just don't understand, BRAVO GIRL, way to go & thank you!!! trish

Patricia Singleton said...

Triciagirl62, Thank you. I learned a long time ago that as long as I concentrate on what someone else did to me instead of on my part in the drama, nothing gets resolved. It is too easy to get stuck in the anger and hurt and not make changes that need to be made. I can't change the other person. I can only change me and my reactions so that is what I choose to focus on. I did have a talk with my husband about the whole situation and how I felt about it before I sat down to write this article. Sharing my feelings with him stops him having to guess what is going on. You can't change what isn't acknowledged. Whether he changes or not is not my problem or my business. It is his. What I can change or choose not to change is my business. Communication is so important in a relationship. Blaming each other for what is wrong is not.

River of Karma said...

Your posts show a lot of strength as a person. Your are inspiring.

River of Karma

Patricia Singleton said...

River of Karma, Thank you so much for your comment and continued support.