When you are 37 years old and you have dealt with a life that you have considered normal spattered with bits of trauma intertwined, you learn to compartmentalize what are important details. You give out details and people tell you how they can’t believe you went through such horrific things. You respond in kind with, ‘it wasn’t so bad because…” or “well, if that didn’t happen then…” and a little piece starts to unravel. Then one day you have something in your life happen that triggers what you FINALLY consider a major panic attack because all those other ones, those were just little things. They were just minor disruptions in your day. They were nothing you couldn’t deal with. You have dealt with so much more. Yet, those copious amounts of tears, that inability to catch your breath while driving 80 on the freeway, THAT was the moment that made you realize, you needed to talk to someone. You didn’t need to talk to someone about all the details. You needed to talk about the incident. The incident that caused THAT panic attack. If you deal with that. Everything else can stay stacked in its box where you have neatly put it away so you never need see it or hear it or talk about it. That way it won’t have an effect on you or your life…except for every waking minute of your life.
But let’s be honest, when you start to tell someone a piece of your story…they ask questions. Every question unearths a new one. It tugs on that thread of your tapestry and you start to unravel. Every question pulls a piece of you as you give a piece of your story, your thread to someone else. It is someone else once again asking you to trust them; promising you that they will never hurt you like everyone else. Once again, it is up to you to decide if you should take a leap of faith and throw yourself onto the fire ready to watch yourself burn if this person becomes another flame instead of the water you are so desperately seeking.
So here I sit, staring at a blank screen with loose threads hanging from me, fires everywhere I look and not a drop of water anywhere in site. Every ounce of fear and self-preservation tells me to shut down yet there is a tiny whisper of hope that instructs me to tell my story. Inside of me lays a moment of courage that propels me forward and says that the Beast won’t get me. From every word forward, I tell my story and stitch together my tapestry trying to become whole. Sometimes, I will need to unravel in order to correct an improper stitch but it will be part of the process. I won’t see the beauty of the stiches until I’m complete but I hear I’m quite a work of art.