That phonecall I actually made, and its aftermath…

I went into therapy feeling really really spacey. I had a head floating away into the clouds, a mind that retreated away somewhere safe.

Dr K noticed it straight away and asked what the problem was. I told her I had psyched myself up to call the sexual assault referral place, and she made sure with me that I was ok to do this seeing as we aren’t able to see each other next week (she’s on holiday). I said that the longer I left it, the worse my anxieties would get.

She sat with me whilst I dialled, encouraging me and helping me just by her presence. My fear was there but I pushed on through it and spoke to two separate people about my confusion and worry.

The receptionist and the doctor who talked to me both agreed that I need to talk to my GP about the problems with the pain and bleeding I’m still getting, but the doctor also said that she would get an independent sexual assault advisor to contact me and help me out if I decide to report what happened to me. They were both so kind and respectful, and believed me without question. The doctor also told me to contact them again if I felt upset or needed any more information.

Dr K was so proud of me and all of my fractured jigsaw-piece parts. The younger parts, fourteen and fifteen year old me, were both upset but ok with the fact that I was trying to get help and also that they were believed through me. I floated out of therapy feeling like I’d achieved something but wanting to curl up and sleep.

Tomorrow I travel along the country to teach. I have a train journey to master, two classes to teach, socialising and responsibility for myself in a station I’ve only recently had a panic attack in. I think I can do this. I will just be careful with myself, take a puzzle book, and try to sleep well when I’m there.

I feel scrambled still but I hope that I will feel more with it tomorrow. I am so proud of myself, but I’m tired too.

Thank you for supporting me today.

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Humans.

I’m currently glued to the Channel 4 drama Humans. For those in the USA/those who don’t know, Humans is about synthetic humans which have become an integral part of our day to day life. They are our servants, doing menial jobs, looking after our children, even serving as prostitutes in a brothel. Five of them an feel. They are anomalies and they are hunted by the government because of who they are.

I love Sci-Fi. I’m a huge Blade Runner fan, I dig the old Star Wars films (the new ones sucked big time, for so many reasons), I love my Star Trek and Prometheus blew my mind. So, Humans was always going to be on my “must -see” list.

What I didn’t know was that it was going to be so deep.

Niska, one of the feeling synths, is forced into hiding in a brothel. She endures countless encounters with awful men until she snaps and kills one of them, a particularly horrible perverted man who wants her to “act young and scared”. She becomes hardened to violence and pretty terrifying.

Mia has her whole personality buried deep in the meaningless code of a household synth. She is given a new personality, and Anita is born. Mia struggles to break past the mask of Anita to get the message through that she is not like normal synthetics.

Leo, once a normal human boy, has an accident which changes him irreversibly. His memories are digital code, his brain wired and chipped, his means of staying alive bizarre- a hash of human and machine.

Niska affected me the most originally. I was torn apart by her suffering and I understood her pain so well.

Tonight, tears poured down my face for a different reason.

(Spoilers, please look away now if you haven’t see the latest episode!)

A childlike and wonderful synth named Max sacrificed himself for his “brother”, Leo. He let himself die so Leo could get away.

He smiled as his eyes shut for the final time, his innocent face awash in bliss that he had saved his brother. He was innocent and adorable and saw the best in everything and everyone.

I found myself sobbing like a child.

I know why I was crying. That sweet, innocent person was like the childhood me. I was so naive and loving and I cared so deeply for pretty much anyone. I wanted everyone to be happy… Just like Max.

I feel like watching Max die explained something to me. The innocent child in me died when I was fourteen, that horrible night that I thought I would be safe with the boy I loved. She died and I miss her. She was uncomplicated and sweet and thoughtful, and I miss her purity of spirit and her desire to be good and helpful.

I am lucky that some of that child lingers in me, that some traits we both have. I still want to believe the best of everyone, I still care for everyone, and I hate to see anyone suffer. But the innocence has gone and I don’t like the experience that’s been left in its place.

It’s funny, how these things come to you in a flash. I think tonight I will curl up and mourn the child I was, the little girl who was so similar to Max.

Fifteen year old me hijacked yesterday’s post, sorry…

Insight is a remarkable thing.

Yesterday, I was hurt and upset and basically not me. Fifteen year old me was out to play, with all her sadness and insecurity and unhappiness about the world. She does not understand her body, she is frightened of sex because it’s a weapon in her view, and she needs a lot of talking down when she gets that upset.

I feel (logical, rational 25 year old me that is) like I should probably apologise if I frightened you all yesterday. I’m ok- I’m safe and so is fifteen year old me. She had a talk in therapy today, which is an odd experience seeing as I have only recently admitted to myself that I am somewhere on the DID spectrum. It feels like in Harry Potter- “a memory. Quietly preserved in a diary for fifty years.” That’s what my parts feel like- memories, slivers of myself preserving the trauma and keeping it away from my current, conscious state of mind. I tried to describe it to Katherine as “we but not we,” which meant that I am aware of the fact that parts inside me are there but that I think I’m more like a jigsaw- pieces of me need to be slotted back together.

I wonder if, one day, I’ll be brave enough to explain to everyone what’s going on on my head.

Crashing down is so familiar.

It’s happening.

I hate this place. I keep being thrown here, keep being locked into this cycle of wishing I was dead and not seeing a way out.

Monday was a nightmare. It was pretty frightening. I saw myself in the physio’s eyes and saw a has-been with no future and no present. I was ashamed of the leg that’s not the same size as the other one, ashamed of the knobbly knees, the bad back, the shape of my pathetic useless body that’s “out of condition”. Another way to say not good enough.

I’m under no illusions- she was trying to help me, trying to motivate me to realise the shape of my therapy with her to come. She’s attempting to push me harder, to help me achieve the goal of returning to dancing. She even said that if I decided not to, it was ok because there was definitely life after retirement.

Oh I know that. I’ve been there for the past two years, and it’s been horrible.

Waking up and seeing the body that let you down so many times in the shower, and hating it. Waking up for work on Monday and hating it. Waking up and hating yourself.

Little Red Riding Hood. (TW: body stuff)

Trigger Warning guys- I talk about a triggering memory, body issues, and my feelings on all of that. Stay safe. x

This could well be a bunch of my random musings. I’m feeling a little distractible and dissociative today, floating on my after-therapy cloud. I feel like I’m hiding inside my own head, letting my body take over and do adult things so that I can just hide and not have to face anything tougher than ordering a coffee.

I feel like today’s session was a rest. I am so tired with all the frantic busyness of the week before but the late sunsets make it very difficult to sleep. I lie awake, hyper-aware of my body, telling myself it will all be ok soon. I hope.

What struck me about today was that I’m realising that connections I could have made years ago are only now being made due to how much I’m actually able to face them. Certain memories that have always haunted me and made me uncomfortable are actually not the stand alone events I thought they once were.

I have a lot of uncomfortable feelings about my body and sexuality, and I believe that quite a lot of that stems from a memory which has always been difficult for me to remember. As I was writing in my journal today, I had what was pretty much a flashback.

I’m fifteen. I’m going to my new boyfriend’s house- well, the place he stays during the week with his grandparents so he can get to school easier. I’m excited and nervous. I’m going out with someone who says God has given us both a special purpose, that we’re angels in human form, that we will defeat the antichrist and save the world. I lap it up eagerly, mania helping me to swallow the lies.

He gets handsy, but I’m ok with that. In fact, when his hand slips down the front of my jeans I’m not worried, I’m excited. So excited I have my first proper orgasm and my jeans and knickers are soaked.

I’m confused. I knew I could get excited but this is new. He seems to find it exciting too and I’m pleased that he finds me attractive.

Problem is, once he’s finished, we head back to his and I’m left sitting in my soaked clothing.

There’s no offer of help, no jointly-concocted lie about me sitting in a puddle on a park bench. I’m just left wet and embarrassed and uncomfortable, and I’m so embarrassed when my mother asks me about the “funny-smelling” jeans and underwear I threw in the wash.

Clearly that means I’m dirty. I’m ashamed of how excited I got and guilty. I lie to my mother a few days later about sitting in a puddle on a park bench, and when I start bleeding whist passing water, I know I’m being punished for what I did. I’m a dirty whore, clearly.

Antibiotics cleared the infection but my sense of cleanliness altered. I felt ashamed and dirty a lot. Clearly, this incident connects to much of my bad feelings about my body today- my horror of myself, my suspicions that I’m infected by him, that somewhere in my psyche he planted a warped seed and laughed at me as it grew. I always feel dirty. I’ve scrubbed my skin raw today in the shower, as I do often, and I’m paranoid about infections or illnesses very often. I tell myself that I’m anxious, that eventually these symptoms will fade, and they do.

I felt like little red riding hood in town on the way home today, lost in the forest and worried about her family. I got off the bus and stumbled across the path of a real live wolf… Except this one didn’t have his teeth bared at me.

I have known Wolf from seeing him at the hospital where I go for therapy with Dr K. He’s tall, well-muscled, close to fifty and tattooed everywhere. Even his lips are tattooed. However, despite his fearsome appearance, he’s a loyal and gentle friend. We talked today, and instead of blowing the house down, he offered me a cool lemonade at my favourite coffee shop.

This wolf believes in the choices others make. He says that although he also came from a background of abuse, he chose the path of righteousness- he patrols the town centre 7 hours a day because he wants to keep others safe. I always count myself lucky that I didn’t meet one of those wolves that will rip you apart, and that I met a wolf that isn’t what the hunters make him out to be.

When I left him today, he gave me a little gift. An angel pin, the head of it a pearl. He’s told me before that my name is in the city of angels, only one letter different from its earthly form. Although I don’t know what to believe, I like that he thought of me and that he’s smart, understanding, generous and kind.

There are a lot of wolves out there, and some like to rip you apart for liking the colour red. My ex and his grandad were like that- terrible, starving, vicious monsters craving my destruction. Wolf himself hates people like that, having been surrounded by them in his life once.

J is a wolf too I think, but more often than not, he’s the wolf that would fight any threat to protect me and is constantly, neverendingly loyal to me as his partner. He’s helped me lick my wounds and curled his body round mine when I’ve felt as dirty and nauseated as I have been feeling right now.

Little red riding hood and the wolf doesn’t end with a human slicing open the stomach of the beast, pulling the girl out of the darkness. It takes a cunning beast to catch a monster, and a wild heart to love a damaged girl once trapped in the belly of the monster that swallowed her whole.

It’s a good job there are only a few rogue wolves out there, and that the rest of the pack takes care of the weaker ones. I may be injured, but the other wolves I know will not stop growling at the darkness until it goes away.

I will keep wearing my red cape without any shame, bloodstains and all. I don’t need to be ashamed- I never asked the monster to eat me after all.

Sixteen year old me.

I don’t like these evenings where I just feel hollow and utterly unreal.

I suspect the reason for this is that my younger self is out and I’m feeling those emotions from when I was still with my ex and that guilt I felt whenever I was doing something I knew he’d hate. I feel guilty a lot. I suspect that littler me, maybe fifteen or sixteen year old me, is currently out to let me know she’s feeling vulnerable and that she isn’t dealing well with things.

I felt guilty back then an awful lot. He would tell me that I couldn’t trust anybody but him, lie to my face about my family disliking me and he’d tell me to bring all my problems to him. He always promised to fix them.

He didn’t fix a single one. He created more.

I wish I was clean of him and his poison in my life. I just want J, a life filled with creativity, my dog and happiness.

Sixteen year old me hated herself. Her legs had a gap. Horrible bent thighs – that gap used to make her crazy, straining the backs of her knees trying to close the godawful gap that stopped her legs being together in a clean line in first position. Real dancers had swayback legs.

She hated her nose a lot, hid its perceived ugliness under large sunglasses and big eyeliner.

She thought she was the buxom curvy one in her year- the pictures tell a different story. Much more of a dancer shape than she ever believed.

Oh god, let’s not get started on how much she hated and was proud of her breasts at exactly the same time. The paradox was head-splitting. Proud that they were there, but not proud that they weren’t big enough. She bought a badly fitting bra to wear under her leotard and she’s never been in class without one since. The amount of self-hatred that rises when I, as twenty-five year old me, can’t find a bra that fits stems from there. I hate that my back is small and that no store now stocks my bra size,and I hate how I feel when I shop. All of that stems from sixteen year old me. She feels uncomfortable and upset a lot and quite often straight up hates her body. I still get that.

I hope that I will fix the way I feel about my body. Sometimes, these feelings from the past jump back into the future and hurt me in the present. Other things were presents from society and a dance school which thought it knew all the answers.

I am going to soothe sixteen year old me to sleep, and I hope I have better dreams tonight. I’m just clinging on to the thought that one day, this will heal as best it can.