And then…

In my previous post Melissa commented: “I view both you and Holly as being tough. But you can both emote. It goes to show that being tough does not mean being cut off from emotions.” I replied that I would address that in a post but I can’t. I don’t know what Melissa means by ‘tough’, perhaps she means strong? Being cut off from emotions? I get that, we tough, strong people build big, thick, high walls between us and those who can/have hurt us but that doesn’t mean we cut ourselves off from emotions. We just cut off anyone seeing us having emotions. We have them, big time. No one sees . No one knows. We have ulcers, anxiety attacks, panic attacks, insomnia, nightmares. The walls we build keep others, and hurt, out but it also imprisons us – we are alone and we still hurt.  One side of the wall – a child curled in a little ball of pain; outside the wall, strong tough woman, capable, indomitable, sometimes down but never out.

And then – I was making a playlist of my life. Just about everyone in my life has a song associated with them, for instance my husband’s song is “My Funny Valentine”.  There are songs that illuminate just about every aspect of my life except – my childhood. So I went looking to see if there were any songs that would resonate for me about my childhood – unfortunately I found some. The songs just gutted me – Martina McBride – Concrete Angel. and Suzanne Vega – Luka. I’m sure there are more songs like these but I don’t have to hear them. And unless you want to ruin a perfectly lovely Sunday, I would advise that you not click those links and listen to those songs.

I don’t know why, despite the passing of so many years; the time working through it all with professional help, despite coming to a certain understanding of the whos and whys and whats – it’s all still there.

11 thoughts on “And then…

    1. I had a night where I felt I was having to be tough and I very much resented it…because I felt I was having to be tougher than anyone I knew. I couldn’t stand the thought of corresponding with anyone but you or Holly, two broads who had rough upbringing, tough, and everyone else just seemed like pansies to me. I was being narcissistic in a weird way and playing favorites…which I do when not well. I tend to take a piss on everyone except one or two favorites when i am psycho. That was the genesis of that. I do think the both of you have been incredibly strong.

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      1. It’s trite, and when I’m in a deep ugly mood it’s aggravating, but I do like to keep in mind that no matter how bad it’s been, no matter how much I struggle, someone, somewhere has it worse. Not helpful in the moment, except sometimes. And yet, whatever our struggles are we are entitled to bemoan them because they are OUR struggles. They are real to US even if seemingly inconsequential to others. Letting our emotions fly is a good thing. Crying isn’t weakness, whether due to anger, sorrow or happiness. Getting it all out there means it isn’t festering inside. Volcanoes of emotions are best left to erupting.

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      2. I think for me it’s just a refusal to let that shit take up too much space in my brain, especially when I have so much more to be grateful for and the perspective to really be able to appreciate it. It’s liberating.

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  1. Powerful image and quote, Grace. I can understand why you have/had walls and how they helped you survive your childhood with your mother. I did not need to click on those songs because although I don’t know if I’ve heard that particular Martina McBride song but I’ve cried at other songs of hers. I sort of remember Luka so am pretty sure how that’d turn out too. I’m not tough unless pushed to a certain point – which I’m still not sure how to measure. I’ve discovered the root of why this is through therapy but haven’t figured out how to deal with it so yeah, inside I’m still there.

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    1. I sometimes think we never get to a point of figuring how to deal with it. There is acceptance – well, what choice do you have, right? It all happened, can’t change that. Understanding? That’s a good thing but then what do you do with that? Someone hurt you in some way and the scars are there to remind you. I have no answers. (And aren’t I arrogant to quote myself LOL)

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  2. Your description of the walls we build touched home. I have been a wall builder for many years. I’ve built solid walls, walls with windows and walls with no means of escape. I one case I even broke a wall down.

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