The memories of what next?

Recently I spoke with my old therapist she has many years experience in defending aswell as writing up reports on abuse cases that will be going to court. I generally wanted to know the course of action that will happen ,how invasive are the questions ,time frames etc. seen I now live over seas ! M was incredibly truthful with me in explaining that more that 85 percent of her clients regret or are more traumatized than ever after either beginning or finishing the court trial, by this stage I was crying on the phone “we spoke about my reasons ,they pretty simple im at a honest stage im sick of hearing how my uncle for one continues to molest children even at the age of 77 there around and even though he has dementia and numerous other health issues he still remembers how to do this “YUK” and yet family still hold onto the belief his not aware anymore ,shame leave him the live in a very poverty stricken squatter camp in south Africa so im guessing these young teens are more venerable! Then for me there was not only him I was abused by a cousin and four of his friends and roughly same time there was another group of three that joined separately  making a total of 8 offenders so my battle was going to be more intense. M also spoke of the strain on my family as all will be interviewed and we talking of a time frame over 30 odd years how would we manage? … could we survive this?

At this point i battle daily to stay grounded as night falls and my mind wonders were too , M as far away as we are is available for more chats surrounding my questions …she made me promise that either way forward id not do it alone I need a small group of supporters of professionals and family who no my queues .There’s something about that I hate grrr I so want to go it alone its mine and ill deal with it ,there’s to the other piece of contacting sexual abuse rape crises and getting support to a police interview next week around more questions on the process , im battling to even ring and ask!

As for now im drowning myself in work 14 hour days it helps my anxiety and for now im home and don’t return till weekend and Monday then home 3 days were ill go this interview …”BREATH IM TRYING”

 

 

 

What Makes a Memory, and Why

Dear Readers of Survival,
I have neglected this site, as well as my own as of late. The past years dedication to WP had seriously eaten in to my obligations as a homemaker and Mom. I have decided to slow down, a lot. However, this question/thought hit me the other night. I hope you will be able to add to it!!! Much love, Heather

Pondering…..

I sit quietly alone on my terrace watching the sun set on the day, as I have done oh so many times before. There is one particular sunset I do recall. Though it was only about 4 years ago, the night was still, the air a pleasant spring time damp. Torches of candle flame stood tall without nary a breeze to fight. This sunset is a memory. I ask myself just when it became so and just why. What was so different than all of the other nights when most probably, the setting was just the same? I ask myself “Will tonight become a memory and if so, when?”

When does an event cross the line and become embedded in our hearts or mind. Why is a memory thought as one a day later, but forgotten with time? We use the terminology in the present that it will “make a great memory”. Such a fun time, a sad time, an unexpected moment, but does it always make the cut, does it really? No, it doesn’t. We forget it. We can possibly recall it with help, but it is not embedded as a memory free for the taking.

I can recall a time when I was about 4 years old popping tar bubbles on a telephone pole one hot summer day. Why? Was it the sensation of the goo on my fingers that nothing else ever matched? What was it? Why is this afternoon of my life still so vivid? The first Beatle album I ever listened to and just exactly where and how I was sitting on the floor of my neighbor’s bedroom at the tender age of about 6. When my dog got sprayed by a skunk. I am sure that memory and the tomato bath she received that night was perhaps distinctly because of the odor I encountered all but once in my life.

People. I have memories of people whose life crossed mine for not more than 10 heartbeats of my own life. Why them? What subconscious meaning did they give me? Something, for sure. Why do I recall them now? Today? Why do my friends have vivid memories of times with me and I, myself, have no recollection of that moment?

The mind and the way it files and retains events selectively is astonishing. Are memories to treasure, to learn from, or to keep a mental note on just how fast time flies? A marker for where we were then and where we are now? As a reminder of simpler days, of harder ones, as ones we didn’t even notice or appreciate in their presence (Hence, a dog’s tomato bath). Will this evening 10 years from now be a memory? I doubt it, but I never expected tar popping to be one either.

Memories, What do you think???

Sunsets and Memories

Sunsets, like childhood, are viewed with wonder not just because they are beautiful but because they are fleeting.” ― Richard Paul Evans, The Gift

Sunsets and memories

Sunsets, like empires and memories of love long ago, fade slow; first brilliant, then warm, and finally passing to silk brocade on black velvet.  How much more beautiful they are in memory when the busy moments of planning and passing through life have stilled. Continue reading “Sunsets and Memories”

Heroes of Annihilated Empires

That is why I write – to try to turn sadness into longing, solitude into remembrance. ― Paulo Coelho, By the River Piedra I Sat Down and Wept

Each person a collected marble every memory of them a tumbled stone like heroes of annihilated empires
Each person a collected marble, every memory of them a tumbled stone like heroes of annihilated empires.  Randstein

He sat silent at the table, his coffee hot and bitter.  He looked up to collect his runaway thoughts then continued to read an old book.  Around him life moved near light speed in tweets to Twitter.  Facebook connected ten thousand souls to only ten distracted minds that milled around in half-dazed skulls.  Next to him sat a woman. He knew in her day she was someone else’s love. Her hair was near solid gray, well dressed in blue, white, and spotless shoes.  She read a book he once read, perhaps thirty years ago. Continue reading “Heroes of Annihilated Empires”

STICKS and STONES by Topaz Winters

One’s dignity may be assaulted, vandalized and cruelly mocked, but it can never be taken away unless it is surrendered. ― Michael J. Fox

Rose and Stone
“I sometimes pretend I’m a Phoenix” – Topaz Winters, from Sticks and Stones

 

It’s my pleasure to bring you another poem submitted by Topaz Winters. Her poem takes us inside the maelstrom of a wounded spirit stuck between feeling the reality of unrelenting anguish from abuse, trauma, abandonment, and the dream of love and life as first imagined. The journey to healing is never swift or without setbacks captured in the line, “I sometimes pretend I’m a phoenix.” Topaz’s advocacy for survivors and awareness is greatly appreciated.  Topaz offered her poem as a tribute to the readers and authors that know abuse and trauma all too well. Thank you for your continued support, Topaz.  And now, dear reader, I submit to you, Sticks and Stones by Topaz Winters. Continue reading “STICKS and STONES by Topaz Winters”

LITTLE CREEK

Love is an untamed force. When we try to control it, it destroys us. When we try to imprison it, it enslaves us. When we try to understand it, it leaves us feeling lost and confused. ― Paulo Coelho

Little Creek

Love is an untamed force.  Indeed.  I’ve spent a lifetime trying to understand it and in the end realized that the torture of asking why, what if, and if only served to deepen the wounds of memories whose sharp rusted edges tear and bruise one’s heart and spirit each moment they live above the surface of that restive cauldron that never cools.  I’ve realized that it’s the mind that eventually falters and in time the pitted patina of our youthful losses fade into a gray-blue surreal scene with black edges and dark contrasts.  Peace comes when the mind hears and no longer recognizes the sound of that first anguished cry.   Continue reading “LITTLE CREEK”

A Faded Rose

Love itself is what is left over when being in love has burned away, and this is both an art and a fortunate accident. ― Louis de Bernières, Captain Corelli’s Mandolin

A Faded Rose

In a follow on to my side trip into aging gracefully, I made a few tweaks to this previous post to give a snapshot into the thoughts one has for a loved one as they grow old together and frailty begins to pull one away from the other.

The metaphor of life from a faded rose in my garden struck me one day as I watched it fade, almost over night.  Memories of youth and life played like a song in my mind even though the words played hide and seek as I searched my mind to no avail to remember dates, names, and faces of those long gone. How our lives fade came to me all too clear in that moment through the lens when the rose came into focus. Continue reading “A Faded Rose”

The End of War

This is a repost of a chapter from one of my short stories.  It wasn’t very popular as far as likes, comments or views. It seems counter intuitive to beat that old dead horse again here.  I replay it because much is said about post traumatic stress disorder in service members but it’s not well understood by the public.  It can manifest years after the event as the memories suddenly drift in like a cold breeze through a forgotten open door.  Internal dialog of scenes long forgotten play out when and wherever they will – triggered by a thought, sound, a vision, a taste or smell. Continue reading “The End of War”

Suddenly Alone

Survivors Blog Here is pleased to welcome Guest Contributor Heather at The Starting End.   Heather was first featured here with her poem, “Night,” a look into the grip of restive dreams.  She spun waking dreams in the reader’s mind with a soft touch and vivid imagery.  Heather’s talent at expressing love and life through poetry and prose is a masterful stroke from the artist’s soft sable brush. 

Today we want to share Heather’s personal insight into her eventual discovery of a new life after the unfortunate loss of her husband in, “Suddenly Alone.”  Recovery from trauma and loss can take years.  Each person is different and must take whatever time necessary to come to grips with the truth of their life’s story.  At some point we realize we are no longer walking our path looking over our shoulder but lightly afoot, eyes forward to a new horizon with untold promise of brighter things to come.  Please enjoy, “Suddenly Alone,” and visit Heather’s website. You will understand why we are so excited to have her as our guest.

A special thanks to Randstein for writing the beautiful introduction.   XO M



SUDDENLY ALONE

Suddenly alone, we find ourselves. Be it from divorce or perhaps death, the chapter of our lives that we never read in our imaginary “Book of My Life” now puts on an unknown page. Continue reading “Suddenly Alone”

Midnight Letters by Topaz Winters

I would like to introduce to you, dear reader, a gifted young lady that I’ve followed since I began blogging.  Topaz Winters is a young novelist, singer, and song writer whose contributions to the world’s music, literature, and poetry is indicative of an ancient and wise soul.  She works tirelessly at her passion for the arts while balancing a busy life.   Recently, She dedicated her poem, Midnight Letters, to the writers on Survivors Blog Here and our readers.  Continue reading “Midnight Letters by Topaz Winters”

I Remember That Day

“The true soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because he loves what is behind him.” ― G.K. Chesterton

Veterans
I REMEMBER

In flames and rivers of blood they lay,

With weary eyes, they saw their fate.

As the chaos of war reached for their souls,

Courage bid them rise and fight that day.

When the battle raged and wounded fell,

Death threw open the burning gates of Hell,

And good men carried the Brave away.

Remember Our Veterans

Wall of Masks

“Words dazzle and deceive because they are mimed by the face.
But black words on a white page are the soul laid bare.” ― Guy de Maupassant
Faces
Based on original image from Associated Press 2011
Wall of Masks
The words fell naked from her face,
So proud to run a single race,
Alone each mile at her own pace.
A smile and eyes glistened red in light,
Each mask she wore slipped on skin tight,
And all their hues and colors were right.
They played all summer in heat and sun,
And all the friends were there for fun,
But for her the task was to pick which one,
To fall as prey to her sick game.
All rued the day they learned her name.
They came for joy, she gave them blame,
They drank those words to slack their thirst,
They drank until their minds near burst,
The lacy toxins only made it worse.
In their heart the seeds of hate,
Grew like weeds in the lake,
And when they knew, it was too late,
To erase the words their hearts now felt.
Words fell on backs like leather belts,
until bowed and on their knees they knelt.
She stood victorious all alone,
The sun set, there was no one.
She cries out loud but no one comes.
She taunts her masks with naked face,
And screams the words that set her pace,
To run for life in a single race,
Alone with all her masks of hate.

Things Unseen

Sail the things unseen

“In imagination she sailed over storied seas that wash the distant shining shores of faëry lands forlorn, where lost Atlantis and Elysium lie, with the evening star for pilot, to the land of Heart’s Desire. And she was richer in those dreams than in realities; for things seen pass away, but the things that are unseen are eternal.”  ― L.M. Montgomery, Anne of the Island

Castle Walls

CASTLE WALLS

“Follow your bliss and the universe will open doors for you where there were only walls.”

― Joseph Campbell

Castle Walls

 

Juron felt safe in his castle. He was of noble stock, the ruler of his domain – a population of one soul complete with body. Juron and his two aether-friends lived a carefree life. They roamed about the castle of their own free will. Juron’s imagination and shadow played gleefully but never too far away from him. The freedom to choose where he would go and what room he would visit gave him a sense of the explorer’s wonder. Continue reading “Castle Walls”

Upon Realizing I’m Old

ALBERT


“Age is not a particularly interesting subject. Anyone can get old. All you have to do is live long enough.” ― Groucho Marx

 

Hotel Staircase

Albert was eighty-eight years old today. He planned dinner with the boys to celebrate. Eighty-eight years. Not a small accomplishment by any means given the many challenges Albert had weathered in his life. He fought in the big war against the Nazis in Africa, Sicily, and up the boot of Italy until wounded. He spent two years in recovery, going from hospital to surgery and back again until it was all a blur. Continue reading “Upon Realizing I’m Old”

Of Joy and Shame

“Watch out for each other. Love everyone and forgive everyone, including yourself. Forgive your anger. Forgive your guilt. Your shame. Your sadness. Embrace and open up your love, your joy, your truth, and most especially your heart.” ― Jim Henson

Joy and Shame

 

Joy and Shame

The voice of Joy and Shame,

Forever call my name.

I hear their pleading day and night,

Step from the shadows into the light.

Come to me, the voice calls;

One rises, the other falls.

The touch of Joy, a fleeting game,

The rival player, a crying Shame.

I love them both, I cannot choose;

Side-by-side, they play my Muse;

At the end, I turn away,

They’ll be back another day.

Neither hopes to ever win;

But, they  know; I’ll play again. Continue reading “Of Joy and Shame”

The Mare

The mare
The Mare

When I was a child,
There was a mare;
She waited for me each day.
With her, I rode to far off lands,
And dreamed my life away.
As I grew, she stayed in place,
Her eyes straight forward, her mouth agape.
I no longer noticed her wild-eyed stare,
Neglected by my hectic pace.
Then, one day, I returned to her;
Sadness and wrinkles upon my face.
One last time, I hugged her neck,
And together we rode away. Continue reading “The Mare”