From Protection to Art

Over an eight-year time span, I unpacked secrets hidden deep in my mind. Some secrets were repressed and some were just sitting in storage, never meant to be unpacked to see the light of day. But for me, I had to make the choice to face, process, accept, and resolve my past so I could continue to heal.

Throughout those eight years, I had given my therapist many, many things that I had saved from my childhood. Some of the items were pictures, a baggie of dirt, rocks, pieces of jewelry, gifts that identified places I had been, and a wooden baseball bat.

I saved all these things because I thought they were proof of what happened to me. I thought they were my smoking guns. My therapist described them as my breadcrumbs. He believed I unconsciously (and consciously) kept these mementos to help lead me back to my repressed past. When I would bring my “breadcrumbs” to him we would talk about them in detail. I got to a point with each one that I no longer needed them in my house. 

One day I brought him a heavy, professional grade bat that had been in my childhood home since the 70’s. This bat was my protection against the people I thought would come for me in the middle of the night. From the time I was young and for many decades since then, that bat lay under my bed.

The day I brought the bat to my therapist’s office I felt ready to relinquish it. I knew I had to learn to trust that I was safe in my home from past perpetrators. We talked a lot about the bat, and that day, feeling extreme anxiety, I left it with him and successfully learned how to fall asleep without that professional Brooks Robinson bat under my bed.

That was four years ago…

Last night I met with my former therapist for a quick post-therapeutic check-in. After 8 1/2 years of intense therapy, I still reach out from time to time. When we met he said, “I have something for you.” He handed me a piece of that old bat that he has sculpted into a wonderful and practical piece of art.

I was stunned! I just assumed he got rid of it. I didn’t think I would ever see any of my breadcrumbs again. They had met their purpose. I was able to give them to someone who completely “witnessed” my story and taught me the tools to feel safe.

Also, one day after giving him the last of my hidden items, (not the bat) he said, calmy but very assured, “There is your smoking gun.” That was the moment I felt free from needing anything to prove the what, where, who and how of my past.

Even though I felt immense relief when I gave up my squirreled away mementos, there were a couple of items that I still thought about every now and then. The things that I felt had empowered me. The bat was definitely one of them. I knew I needed to give these things up to release the hold they had on me, and their association with the past, but every now and then I had a bit of nostalgia for some of the things that helped me feel safe.

Holding this beautiful piece of polished wood in my hand yesterday I felt so many emotions. I felt cared about, I felt a safe connection to someone who knows my whole story, I felt elated that I could see this transformed bat for its new purpose, and I felt a little like I got a piece of my warrior super-power armor back. I don’t need it to protect me any longer, but it’s a wonderful feeling to look back with pride for how far I’ve come and to also acknowledge all the fabulous ways my mind helped me create a sense of safety during decades of living in fear.

From a hurt child’s object of protection into a practical piece of art, my professional Brookes Robinson wooden bat will continue to provide me with a sense of peace.

 

Thank you for reading my books: If I Could Tell You How It Feels, and Untangled, A Story of Resilience, Courage, and Triumph    

 

 

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Patiently, She Waits

She’s not
a creature
invisible
Nobody with no-body
She’s the inner child

She’s not
unloveable
disposable
forgettable
She’s the little girl inside

She’s there
waiting
visible
huggable

She’s there
quietly, patiently longing
to become part of the whole
Somebody with a-body

She’ll wait
She’s listening
If you whisper
you’ll feel her smile
when you touch your heart.

©Alexis Rose. Image Source, Pexels

Thank you for reading my books: If I Could Tell You How It Feels, and Untangled, A Story of Resilience, Courage, and Triumph    

 

 

What Would You Suggest?

I have the privilege of presenting to a  Human Services class at a local college in a couple of weeks.  I’m extremely grateful and also honored to be asked to talk to these students, because some of them may become (or already are) professionals in the mental health field. I’m determined to help destigmatize mental illness, particularly PTSD, by speaking and writing openly about living with this disorder.

I’ll be talking about the definition of PTSD, some common symptoms, how I’m able to live a full, and purposeful life, even though I sometimes still struggle with multiple symptoms, resources, etc.

I’m really excited about two topics that I have been asked to address during my presentation.

  • What to say and/or not to say to someone with PTSD (or mental illness)?
  • How professionals can better help people who they work with? 

I definitely have my ideas, but I thought about how wonderfully interactive and positive the blogging community is when it comes to comments. I would love to know how you would answer these questions. Either of the questions.

Your input is greatly appreciated!

Thank you for reading my books: If I Could Tell You How It Feels, and Untangled, A Story of Resilience, Courage, and Triumph    

Where Fairies Dwell

As I gazed upon nature’s elegance
I came across the place
where fairies dwell.
I knew that this is where
they rest, and play, and smile.

A garden safely tucked
beside a hill
which grew out of
friendship, trust, and tender care.

I noticed the flash of light
as the fairies dashed behind the tree
that was holding strong
safe, waving for them to hide.

Filling my senses
with the wonder of the moment
I heard the wind singing
words of hope
harmonizing with the brothers and sisters
in the jeweled sanctuary of one.

©Alexis Rose, image source: Pexels

Thank you for reading my books: If I Could Tell You How It Feels, and Untangled, A Story of Resilience, Courage, and Triumph    

An Inspirational New Book

Barbara is a fairly new member of our WordPress community. Her blog posts are honest, genuine, and her commitment to continued healing has been incredibly inspiring to me since we’ve connected.

Barbara just released her inspirational book, I Walk With A Limp available on Amazon. Click on the link to her blog (give her a follow too!) to read the details of her new book. https://iwalkwithalimp.com/

Gook Luck Barbara. I know this is what I will be reading this weekend!

Book Release: My New Book is Now Available on amazon.com

 

 

Will the Sky Fall?

The sky is a beautiful shade of deep blue.
The puffy white clouds move
at a meditative pace
changing shapes
as they roll overhead.

The waves of the sky.

Gazing at this wondrous expanse
I worry will the sky fall
if I say my truth out loud?

Will the sky fall?

Funny, it didn’t fall
when I journaled the words
and shared it with my confidant.

The sky didn’t fall on me
nor did it fall on her.

I once looked to the sky
for help, for escape.
I watched the clouds
move, and then turn dusty
but it was only the dust in my eyes.

I fell silent.

Today, as I sit with the truth
I know I don’t have to suffer.

I’m no longer completely silent
but sometimes the words get stuck in my throat.
Constricting, and pressing on my lungs.
Making it hard to talk, to speak my truth.

The old tapes press play:
Will the sky fall
if I speak, if I share?

Tentatively trusting
I surf the waves of the sky
just as I surf the waves of emotion.
The waves of life.

The sky is indeed beautiful today
Beautiful, alive, full of awareness and hope.

I know that the sky will not fall!

sky-1256943_1920

Thank you for reading my books: If I Could Tell You How It Feels, and Untangled, A Story of Resilience, Courage, and Triumph