the little stuck me
A huge part of my healing in the past 6 years has been about my voice and my story, my pain and my sadness, my fears and my anger.
My healing has been much about the process of tearing down walls that stood tall and firm since I was 5 years old.
I have opened up and kicked down more walls than I ever imagined I would or could, and behind the walls and the debris of pain stood the very thing I protect and have protected since the moment I was forced into being an adult at a very young age.
The little young me who holds and witnesses all, a burden too heavy to carry on her own.
The one thing that I have struggled to talk about without shame or guilt is the little me; the 9 year old that is still stuck running round and round in the emotional circles from the abuse I endured as a child.
This is a photo of me at the age of 9. This is the little girl I see when I talk about the abuse and the pain I went through.
This is the image of myself that holds every little story and all the emotions I keep deep inside of me when I think back on my life as a child.
This is the age I became stuck inside, and this is the age that holds those voices that speak to me everyday that keep me from the being the person I want to be vs the person I am due to continued pain and fear that I live with everyday.
I have made leaps and bounds from the person I was before I walked into therapy 6 years ago, but the one thing that I refused to face is the little me inside that is stuck, and I am coming to realize just how much “she” is a part of me, and that in order to move into healing out in the big world, I need to honor the little child that still is frozen in time in the pain she (I) endured as a child.
My therapist and I have been working hard talking about this “little me” inside of me, and a huge part of me has been in denial that there is a child stuck inside of me.
“I am an adult now, I have 3 teen boys, I am wife, I am over 40, I am grown, there is no healing the child inside, she is gone”
that is what I thought, and the more and more my therapist and I talk about it, and reach in and really touch on something bigger inside of me – the more I am starting to accept that there is a 9 year old screaming to get out and I need to honor her just the way I have hoonred me in the past 6 years of healing.
My therapist works with a program called “Male Survivor” a couple of times a year to where he goes on these retreats and helps to work with “men” who have been abused as children. This past Tuesday my therapist told me how each of the men talk about the little boy inside of them, and how the weekend of recovery is about letting the child inside play, and speak, and talk about the pain.
When my therapist told me this, my eyes welled up, and I had this feeling of SADNESS come over me. I wasn’t tearful because of the men he was telling me about, I was tearful because I have turned my back to the child inside of me because I was forced to be the adult my whole life and that is the strong me I needed to be to live.
My therapist and I have talked many months about the little child inside of me that is stuck, but I closed it down, I didn’t want to talk about it, and when we did, there was a part of me ashamed and guilty and maybe even a little embarrassed.
This past week when I heard my therapist talk about those men “LOVING” the child inside of them and giving them space to talk and heal, I think it hit me in a huge way. I think it allowed me to truly SEE that there is a 9 year old stuck inside of me. There is a little me that still resides inside of me wanting to heal just as I did for myself.
There is a young part of me that needs to be playful, fun, and even let out the emotions she has been holding for a VERY long time.
Those voices that I hear everyday making decisions FOR me – that is the young part of me still protecting me from the world of the abuse I went through (even though the abuse is no longer happening).
Lately (especially after this hard hard year with a situation I went through that surfaced alot of the younger me) I have been going through deep sadness that I dont understand. I have gone through so many emotions that have confused me, and it’s painful and I dont understand it …. well now I do.
I need to heal the 9 year old now that I have broken down the walls to the past. I have done such a good job for 6 years tearing down those walls telling the story from MY voice.. well now I need to heal the little me and give her a voice and a place to feel safe and heal.
Even writing this is hard, because there is still a part of me that has a hard time believing that I hold so much pain inside and that pain is the 9 year old stuck running around in a huge circle of pain, shame, anger and fear.
I have this notion that I am supposed to be the 40+ year old mom, wife, strong strong person who doesn’t depend on anyone but myself and I need to be perfect at it .. well I am learning that there is more to heal than just the adult I was forced into.. there is another part of me that I need to let open and its scary.
I dont know how to play. I dont know how to be dependent on another person. I dont know how to cry like a child and let that be okay. I dont know how to NOT be an adult, and that is where the pain is, and I need to honor that side of me that I was never able to BE.
What does the abuse and the pain look and feel like from the 9 year old? what would it be like to play? what would it look like to write about my feelings from the child inside? what does SHE want to say?
Maybe that is why I go through 2O’clock everyday, I believe 2 O’clock is her voice saying “I am hurt and you wont hear me”.
When I wake up crying in the middle of the night, that is the stuck me inside trying to find a way out only through sleep where the walls of adulthood keep that at bay.
So tonight I write this blog and I take a huge risk in fully admitting that there is a stuck part of me inside – a 9 year old who’s voice finally wants to be heard, Who’s emotions finally want to be felt, and a child that wants to come out and play and be dependant on someone without guilt.
I have done so much research on healing the inner child, but each time I tried to walk towards that, I shut the book, I shut it out like I have done since I was 5 years old when I was forced to be 40+ from the moment I created those walls of protection.
It’s sad .. I have tears even writing this because this is a huge step towards something that could lead me towards a letting go of someone I have held onto my whole life.
My therapist is gentle, loving and caring and he is here waiting for me to open up this side of me and see that there is something bigger inside that needs healing, and it’s time to really heal what was hurt so badly inside from HER voice.
I dont know what this looks like exactly, but we are working on it, and the most important thing is, I am accepting it.
No more denial.
That beautiful 9 year old inside of me needs a place to run and be set free from the walls I safely surrounded her around. She needs a place where her voice will be heard, her emotions can be felt, and love can surround her with gentleness and safety.
This week showed me that I am finally ready to come out of the isolation that this past year has brought upon me and trust all that is around me to heal a huge part of me that I denied for so long.
The path is here for me, all I need to do is accept it and honor it and I know I am supported every step of the way.
There is a hand in front of me waiting to emerge this part of my healing, and all I need to do is grab a hold of it and trust it will be okay to honor this part of my healing, and to know it’s not silly, it’s nothing to be ashamed of, or anything to feel guilty about.. it’s courageous.
I have wonderful support and a wonderful therapist to help me see this part of my healing and I think I am ready to take this step.
May 24, 2013 at 1:34 AM
I enjoyed reading your story
May 24, 2013 at 4:27 PM
thank you Christine … that means a lot to me 🙂 more than you know ….
May 24, 2013 at 1:43 AM
I have 9 year old twin grand daughters, and a 9 year old grand son. YES they need to be heard. They have voice and opinions and thoughts.
Take time to listen. To wait. To listen more. To write. To listen more… and it is continual till peace takes place.
You are not in that time you are in now time. But you might have to revisit “that time’ in order to fully heal.
Allow your 9 year old to draw. To write. To acknowledge what she knows and what age she knows it..
May 24, 2013 at 11:10 AM
Thank yoU Sharon … that is one thing that will be my friend while I embrace this is “time” .. taking the time needed to move through this as best as I can …. your right, time is important in this .. thank you for that reminder …. and thank you for your response.
May 24, 2013 at 4:18 AM
Step out to freedom dear, brave, precious one. Praying for you.
May 24, 2013 at 11:09 AM
thank you Shorty 🙂 thank you for your encouragement 🙂
May 24, 2013 at 4:54 AM
Oh friend, she is there and she is beautiful, that nine year old little girl, who now at 40 grieves what never was. Thank you for boldly sharing your story, for giving it words even through tears. You are beautiful, and you are loved by God and by me. Giving thanks for those in your life who are there to help you in such tangible ways and please know how very much I will be praying for you Karen, and although I don’t know exactly how to pray, God knows. He knows. With much love, Jacque xoxo
May 24, 2013 at 11:08 AM
thank you so much jacque … your response means a lot to me, and I know God is a long side of me. I think he wants the 9 year old to come out and be set free from the circle of repetitive pain..
Thank you for your comment 🙂
May 24, 2013 at 10:43 AM
Oh I feel so excited for your inner child. I can imagine that in addition to the pain she wants to let out, she has fun and delight to share with you too.
(actually my inner child might like to ‘play’ with yours….!!…)
I read with intense interest about your story today. This does seem like a really big new phase on your healing joyurney (type-o seems fun so I’ll leave it).
I’m so happy for you that you have such good support and lots of it. Support and wisdom. It sounds like you have a very skilled T.
Just also wanted to pay respect to the part of you that hasn’t been ready to connect with your 9 year old….that is to protect you too. But now it seems like you are ready.
Love and blessings to you.
May 24, 2013 at 11:07 AM
Gel …. I love your response in keeping the typo’s hehe thats fun!
I have tossed back and forth between this for months now. A part of started to work with the inner me, but then I stopped and was too embarassed to continue towards it.. I think this week I really opened my eyes to what was going on around me, and what needs to be honored.
I have been working on my book and the more and more I work with that, the more I am realizing something big is going on and I need to pay attention to it.
Thank you for your comment.. always nice to see your name on the bottom of my posts.
Amy L. Sullivan (@AmyLSullivan1)
May 24, 2013 at 8:42 PM
Brave girl, brave, brave girl.
May 24, 2013 at 11:42 PM
thank you Amy ….. I think she is brace too 🙂
May 25, 2013 at 6:29 AM
You are so brave and courageous! Your words resonate in me, and I am so touched by your utter willingness to heal. Self-acceptance is so important – and self-compassion are the tools with which you forging through your pain. Some days I am able to look at Little Leslie and realize all that she deserves.
KarenBeth — you are gently emerged from your hell.
May 25, 2013 at 2:24 PM
Self Healing is so hard, and you make it sound easy. You are a credit to yourself. Brave and courageous as others have said.
Touching story. Thank you for sharing pal…