Everything has been going well, the memories and my emotions were in check. I had not had a flashback in months, no nightmares during this time, only a better sense of self and happiness. Then Monday night I awoke in a terrible state, screaming, crying and shaking. One memory I hope would not be true and only be words spoken by the priest so I would comply. The images were so real. I was sitting up in the bed and there were hands wrapped around me from the back, trying to stop the shaking and hearing her words you will be alright, it was not your fault. I guess we must have sat there for over an hour silently. I did not want to talk. My friend told me I was yelling over and over, you did not love me, I was not special. Let him go he did nothing to you. I saw the younger child and the priest leaving a dark room. Was it a dream or real? It was so vivid. I remember the words which had been spoken by the priest, if I did not do what he wanted he would visit someone else close to me. I always hoped he did not but had fears he did something to him. It seems so real, I remember screaming and shaking while I saw the images.
This was the first time during a flashback that I had someone comfort me by holding me and speaking gently to me. I thought about this and realized for me I had did not have someone to be there for me as I battled the past. I remember during prior flashbacks being yelled at and left to struggle, hearing laughter and taunts. She handled me in a kind way. I remember in the past I would find myself sleeping on the floor covered in blankets trying to hide from the images. This time I remained in the bed and even fell back to sleep for a few hours.
I always had the fear of what the abuser may have done to someone near to me because of the abuser’s words. This person died too young and lived a life so lost. I was troubled all day, thinking of images and words. I keep asking myself of how and why was this young child there.
I had a support group meeting last night. We talked about nightmares and flashbacks. It seems many have experienced new flashbacks or nightmares after they began the healing process. My T had said once I accepted and let the emotions out the memories would surface over time, when the time was right. The others in support have experienced the release of the memories and images as they “let their guard down” of burying the past. I now need to deal with these images and memories. I look to the day that the all the memories have been experienced and are not lurking awaiting for the right time to come to life.
But for me, to have someone show compassion and kindness as I was experiencing the flashback made me feel valuable. I now believe, those around you are instrumental in how one heals or does not heal. Thank you to all the supporters who are there for us.