Redefining Sexual Abuse

This post may contain some triggers for sexual abuse survivors. I would also like to point out that this post represents my own current state of healing. There are no rights or wrongs, just differences.

Today I attended and participated in my second session with Mai Mai to dissolve the emotional charges on significant events from my past. I’ve had a fairly full on emotional processing week since last Friday. This has resulted in an almost constant headache, which I’m okay with. I’m making good ground 😉.

In Manly for two days, I almost completed the first chapter for my book. It provides the context for my healing paradigm, and thus, the book. In the first chapter, I cover physical and sexual abuse, IVF and the Investigation. Not comprehensively, but a solid overview. As I wrote, I found that some elements created an emotional charge which I Demartini’d as I went.

This morning, when I read my list of memories, as a result of my writing, I found that I could tick off most of my memories as resolved. There was no emotional charge anymore.

I asked if we could focus on my relationship with food, and I recounted two significant memories for me. In our discussion regarding those, we moved into the area of sexual abuse. I can’t remember the exact topography now and it probably seems a bit far fetched lol, but it is what it is. It was logical I assure you.

Anyway, Mai Mai asked me to think about the words sexual abuse and how the language already connotes a negative association which is a judgement. I think an underlying component/understanding behind dissolving the charges is removing judgement from our memories and the associations from our memories.

I had to think about this, the meaning and connotation and inherent judgement in the language. It is very confronting in so many ways. Predominantly, because we are conditioned by society to ascribe moral judgements to things like abuse and ideas that disrupt that conditioning require processing.

The Demartini Method, to bring balance, requires us to focus on the perceptions that we hold, emerging from the notion that negatively impacting perceptions are often unbalanced. This means that we have focused more on the drawbacks in the situation, rather than equally focusing on the benefits we gained from the situation.

Thinking about early sexual encounters in this light is very confronting. I discovered this morning that playing a victim role has brought me benefits even though I have focused on the drawbacks.

Mai Mai took me back to my first memory. I recounted it for her, as honestly and comprehensively as my recollection allowed. The drawbacks were easy: fear, no choice, no control, discomfort, through to shame and guilt.

People have often said to me that writing my posts demonstrates courage. I have not understood that until this post. I am feeling exceptionally vulnerable in this one. I told things to Mai Mai today that I have never shared and I intend to keep that honesty going now, even though I will not reveal all of the details I shared today including the identities of the perpetrators. This might be confronting for some people who have encountered/experienced sexual abuse or uncomfortable sexual encounters.

In the context of the specific memory, Mai Mai then asked me to focus on what I gained from the encounter, the benefits. Whoah! Confronting.

Mai Mai tempered this by asking about what I could have controlled in the situation. Again, confronting. However, being honest, I acknowledged that I could have left the space we were in, I could have shouted out for help, and now I realize I also could have punched him probably.

It was at this point that my perception of the situation started to change a little, and the emotional charge started to temper. I was consciously changing my frame of reference.

I then focused on the benefits: I was a victim, I received attention, I felt seen and acknowledged, my body felt aroused, I felt that my existence was validated. It is important at this point to highlight the context I was living in. My parents fought a lot and I didn’t feel seen or safe.

Mai Mai then asked me to focus on how this perception of myself and the situation had then continued to serve me throughout my life.

Illumination! I could rattle off exactly how the labels of victim and the benefits in the situation had served me throughout my life to lead me here.

I then sat there, more than a little stunned, because my perception of the situation had become filled in, expanded, changed. I no longer felt like a victim and I no longer felt negatively towards the situation. Again, I moved to feelings of gratitude for the actions of the ‘perpetrator’.

Not only that, my beliefs are that I had a soul contract before this incarnation started and that I had selected all of the lessons that I wanted to learn. I also had people from my soul tribe offer to be the ‘perpetrators’ of yuck and violence against me to enable the lessons and empower my learning. There is a moment when our beliefs and life events hit a moment of complete connection. Today’s session served to remind me of all of this and see how the theory of my beliefs actually manifests in real life events.

I am seeing the bigger pattern now. I am also remembering my lessons. I am moving from teacher to healer, starting with my own healing. I am flourishing. And, I wish this for everyone. I’ve been reminded of my soul’s purpose. Power.

Happy to answer questions about this one.

Emotional Congestion

I am waking up every morning with either a head cold starting or a headache. I am Demartini-ing everything that comes up lol. My body is manifesting symptoms to keep me from sliding. I become conscious and I nurture myself.

Whilst away in Manly for thirty six hours, I finished (almost perfect) Chapter One of my book. It is about the context that lead to this healing year. There were potential emotional charges throughout it: physically damaging childhood, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, IVF, last year’s investigation.

As I wrote, I found that I was using the Demartini method as I went to dissolve the charges. It became a reflex. I shared this with Renee; I was so surprised and so happy that it was happening.

Changing the narrative is empowering and makes it so much easier to write.

At one point, on the way back to the unit, Renee (unintentionally) made a comment along the lines of all women fulfilling purpose by bearing children. Six months, even a month ago, this would have caused a twinge of emotion (failure/regret/loss) within me. Yesterday, it just elicited a facetious response, but more significantly, there was no emotional charge for me. I had to assure Renee I was fine, and I truly was.

Every step, every event, every single thing in my life has brought me to where I am right now, and right now, my life is charmed.

I am not wealthy, but I have enough, most of the time. I am healing and I am happy. I am surrounded and immersed in love always, my own and the love of others. I look after myself and I am very kind to myself. I am kind to others. I feel light. I feel fulfilled. I am creating my ideal life. I am blessed. I am grateful for all that has lead me here.

A human cannot ask for more.

Writing Retreat

My friend Renee and I have often said that we should take off for a few days to write. We always have hair brain schemes running. Not even half become real.

However, I have a book proposal due at the beginning of December and she needed some time to finish her memoir, and so this morning we came to Manly. After settling in to her family apartment, we went for coffee and started work. Every couple of hours we got up and went to a different cafe ~ great for the creative flow and for our writing.

I wrote over a thousand words and resolved my ideas. I edited this entirely and repeatedly. I’m almost happy with it.

I’m grateful. And blessed.

🙏🏻🦋

Letting Go: Failed IVF, the Investigation, Fear and Control

Hi. My name is Tina and I am a recovering control freak.

As a child, I felt so out of control so much of the time, that as an adult I have tried to control everything.

I figured that if I had control, life would be good and I would become blissfully happy. I have spent my entire adult life controlling or trying to control everything. I have never really just let go.

Until now.

Thank you, Uluru, for your sacred healing energy that infused a trust for the divine into my soul. I am still, still. There is a calm and a peace in my depths that tranquilises any fear or anxiety that may arise.

I am very zen.

And as a result, obstacles are dissolving.

I only know this because I know the other side, too intimately.

For the best part of five years I tried to control falling pregnant and having a baby. When I did fall pregnant, my fear of not having control expunged the foetus from my body.

This was an opportunity to learn a strong lesson, that I failed to learn. The lesson was that I needed to trust the higher powers, whatever and whoever they are. I needed to trust the flow of life and the contract I made with myself prior to my birth into this incarnation. I needed to trust, full stop.

I then didn’t trust my family and friends to be there for and with me, and I tried to control that too. And so, I was alone.

Fear is a great controller. Broken, from failing to control everything, fear seeped into the wounds and kept me bound. I couldn’t move forward, or even see behind me. There was just the moment, and not in a zen way.

Failing at pregnancy, I turned to fostering. Again, trying to control, I wasn’t enough; my reason for fostering wasn’t enough. I was confused and broken, belittled and worthless. Again.

All the while, I was being bullied at work, reliving aspects of my childhood I thought I had resolved years before. I was used by people whom I trusted. I was belittled and betrayed. I tried to fight back without conflict, with understanding and compassion I told myself, but really, my fighting was fear manifested. I tried to control from a very weak and inauthentic place, and that resulted in poor choices.

The fear resulted in a ten month long investigation. Ten months of fear and anxiety, and a strong, visceral reminder that I control nothing. Subconsciously this fed the I am worthless narrative I had been telling myself my whole life. My desire and need for control was really just me trying to feel like I was worth something and trying to prove that to everyone else.

“I’m pregnant, look everyone. I belong. I am normal. I am one of you.”

“I’m a head teacher, look everyone. I belong. I’m normal. I am one of you.”

“I’m a foster parent, look everyone. I belong. I’m normal. I’m one of you.”

Years ago, at a crossroads professionally, I went to a medium. She acknowledged my crossroads. She told me my two alternatives. Promotion at work, or book signings as a healer and teacher.

Fear, manifested as control, kept me bound, until the investigation and then India. Prior to the investigation, the universe had started to untie my bounds. I had paid my deposit for India. I had completed many natural healing courses. I had registered a business name and received an ABN.

Last year, paradoxically, I had my worst professional year and my best. I was amazing in the classroom; I was exemplary. I was an amazing mentor slash healer. I loved teaching and being with the kids. But, my life and my soul fell apart.

I was forced to relinquish control. I needed to find trust that I was being redirected. I was coming home.

But, in the midst of anxiety and fear, I couldn’t see this. Almost a year after the investigation concluded, I can see it. Clearly. And today, I can feel it. Freedom. Bliss. Purpose. Fulfillment.

I am a healer. I am a teacher. I am a writer. More than that, I am me. A recovering control freak, a survivor of childhood dysfunction, and a braver scaredy cat.

🙏🏻🦋

Trust – Yikes.

As a result of the way I processed the trauma from my childhood, I really struggle with trusting people to support me. I don’t expect that they will because, ultimately, I believed the narrative I wrote for myself as a child: I wasn’t deserving; I wasn’t worthy.

As a result, I have ALWAYS struggled to ask people for help. ALWAYS. And, when I say struggled, I generally haven’t been able to ask for help because I haven’t believed it would be there and then the narrative would be true.

As I grew up, as I moved through adulthood, until recently, I shut down in times of stress and pain, rather than be told I wasn’t worthy or important enough to receive help. It was never helped that when I did find courage to reach out, I either wasn’t clear enough in my request, or it was too hard for people to support me (not knowing how, not realising how desperate I was, etc).

All legitimately, and often because I failed to communicate my needs clearly through abject fear of rejection. However, in my traumatised brain, the ensuing refusal to support or failed realisation that I needed it, only reinforced my childhood narrative. It made me shrink further.

I have been working hard on improving and healing myself. I have worked to remove blocks to abundance and worked to remove obstacles that I imposed in friendships. I have worked hard to become the very best version of myself, and that has also meant sacrificing control.

As a traumatised child, I had no control. As a damaged adult, I have over compensated the control area of my life. Detrimentally.

For years, decades, I have tried to control everything. The investigation last year was a real and significant turning point for me in my healing journey. I had no control over anything except me. No control. Read, nightmare.

But, it forced me to start to trust myself. And I started to trust and utilise my Higher Self and my guides (those nagging voices we sometimes here; call it what you will). I heeded the call and went to India, and my life completely changed. A true transformation to become my best self.

Very recently, I have struggled with some minor obstacles (first world problems completely) and I have had to reach out twice for real support. I struggle with this still. But I have grown enough to realise that I need to clearly communicate what I need. I also accepted that support may not be possible through no fault of the others; I was asking a lot.

Both times, my request for support was very lovingly heard and acted upon. I spent more time agonising than was necessary. More time stressing and feeling awkward than was necessary.

I am so grateful. Grateful for the support I received lovingly. Grateful that I am growing. Grateful that I have created a life where second, third, fourth and tenth chances are offered. Grateful that I can trust other people to support me. Grateful that I realise it is on me.

It is easy to blame others and say, I am always there for others and no one is there for me. I hear this often. I used to say it. Often. But, it’s on us.

The universe is a big place; there is enough for all of us to have what we need and want.

However, we need to clearly communicate what we want and need. And, we need to understand that to achieve it, we need to trust those around us. We need to provide the opportunity for others to support us. We need to accept that not everyone will or can support us, and this is not a reflection of our worth and value.

Easier to say than do, I get that. I am a forty six year work in progress. But, it is getting easier. I am surrounding myself with people who have been through a lot with me, who have tolerated a lot, but also, in the last four or so years, I’ve also become discerning in who I give my heart and trust to, and that is making the difference.

I am a giving person. I am a loving person. And, I am surrounding myself with like minded souls who get me. I am grateful for this.

Trust will be an ongoing journey for me. I feel guilt when I accept help. This is ridiculous. I would do what I could for most people, whether they are in my inner circle or not. I should at least expect and accept the same for me.

And, if this has resonated with you, so should you 😘

🙏🏻🦋

The Darkness

I think one of the hardest things to deal with from being abused is the feeling that you're never quite good enough. When you are young and another person treats you like you are worth nothing, and your power is stripped from you, it's very hard to take that power back and get those feelings of worth reinstated.

I have two clear memories of sexual abuse. One of these has been with me since my late teens and has never shifted; there's not much of it but enough for me to still feel a pang of ick when I recall it. The son of family friends was playing Hide'n'Seek with us. We hid in one of the bedroom's wardrobes. It was dark. And, you know, stuff happens.

Yep. Stuff happens. I'm at peace with it but am struggling to write what that stuff is. There is that fear present. Not of him but of judgement from others, of someone saying, that's not abuse and you're making something out of nothing.

Maybe I am. Maybe I did. I don't think so.

Because it impacted me. In the context of my childhood and my life, it changed me. I was never the same afterwards. I was very young, and the touching down there violated a part of me. I couldn't tell anyone. I lost my voice. I had never really felt safe before and I definitely didn't feel safe after.

I always felt that there was more. There was a way that one of the adult family friends always made me feel when he looked at me: vulnerable, uncomfortable, undressed. A horrible feeling when it isn't coming from someone you love or choose to be intimate with. Last year, during a healing session (I blogged about this at the time), I had a video reel of the sexual abuse playing through my head. That included penetration and all over grossness. Again, I was very young.

By the time this one was fully revealed to me I had completed so much personal work on my own healing, reclaiming my voice and standing in my truth that it barely impacted me emotionally. If anything, for me, it validated how I had felt all of those years.

Neither of these situations was one-off. And I don't think they were the only ones. But, I'm not sure. And I don't think it really matters. The impact was made. I needed to heal that. I'm happy with the knowledge that I do have. I don't need or want more.

We are all very different. What one person can handle, another might find completely devastating. I think that's okay. We all have our own path to walk. And, in our own time.

When I was at uni, away from home and my family, my indicator behaviours became more pronounced. I became obsessive compulsive with cleaning. I was cleaning the house from top to bottom every morning, manically. I stopped answering the phone; okay on its own, but as I listened to it ring out, and landlines ring forever, I was gripped by absolute terror. I became reclusive and shied away from any physical human contact. I started eating really badly and quite gluttenously (hello future weight problem) attempting to shield and nurture myself all at the same time. And, I started arguing unreasonably and without any flexibility in my tutes at uni; I needed everyone to hear me. Flashbacks were coming at random times.

I was sliding between mania and depression. I wanted to hide and be seen, I wanted control and wanted to be looked after. Contradictory behaviours that were driving the sanity bus straight to insanity.

I had majored in Psychology and knew enough to research the behaviours indicators of sexual abuse. I listed them. Made an appointment with a local sexual abuse specialist counselor. Turned up, with my list, and matter of factly announced that I was sure I had been sexually abused, could she please look at my list and validate that for me.

She was amazing. She smiled, read my list, passed it back, and started a dialogue neither validating or denouncing my claims. With her support, I started unpacking my behaviours and my memories and owning them all. She empowered me to see that I had choices, and reminded me that healing was a process, and a long, arduous one.

And, then she went on maternity leave and my professional support stopped for a time.

It was only through owning my perceptions of my childhood sexual abuse that I was able to move forward, very slowly. I started to speak my truth. The hardest thing was telling my mum. She validated my claims, but that opened a whole other can of worms for me. More on that later.

There were many dark times during the next, close to ten years, I'd say. My twenties became marked by trying to work myself out and get better. I couldn't see me reaching my thirtieth birthday; I was sure I would be dead by then.

I drank a lot in my mid to late twenties, started casually using some low level drugs sometimes, and wanted to walk into the ocean and not come out more times than I can count.

More on all of this later.

But, I survived. I still didn't think I was worth very much, I didn't like myself very much, I was doing more and more for others at my own expense, I was bitterly unhappy, fleeing from situations that challenged me in all of my relationships, working hard to not commit to any people, and succeeding, but I survived.

Sigh. What a journey through darkness.

Sexual abuse: the gift that keeps giving.

Rubbing Against Old Patterns

I am writing a book/book proposal; working hard to manifest last new moon's intentions. I have always wanted to be a writer. And, I am.

I am grateful for this platform in this technological and connected age. But, I want more. I want books in print, partly for ego, if I'm being honest, but mostly because I have something to share. I completed a Masters degree in Writing to support the manifestation of this dream. I started this blog to support the manifestation of this dream. I went to the Writer's Workshop to manifest this dream.

And this week, I found myself rubbing up against the same old conditioning that has plagued my life: fear.

That I'm not good enough.
That I'm not unique enough.
That I have nothing new to say.
That no one is really interested.
That I'm not good enough.
That I'm not good enough.
That I'm not good enough.

Fleeting thoughts, not deep enough to upset me. And, real enough to paralyze the free flow of my writing.

I combat these thoughts, this fear, and keep doing it anyway. This is what is different now. I push through in spite of the fear. I haven't given up. I continue to torture the words, forcing them into uncomfortable positions, making them do my will.

And then Saturday morning comes, I watch some inspirational videos, and I remember to trust myself, and I remember to trust the universe (or God), and I remember that every path I take leads me closer to my enlightenment.

And I hear the higher voice reminding me to be authentic, telling me not to do what other books have done, do what you do best Tina, and I recall a message I received last week from my long term friend and sister, Crystal, and she was already reminding me of what I needed to do. It took me a couple of days, that's all, for my mind to catch up and trust.

That pesky voice who lives in fear, man, it comes at the worst times, and it inhibits growth and movement, and I forgot to acknowledge it and tell it that I hear it, but it has no power here anymore, because it found a different way to get in. It didn't come in and stop me from starting, it waited until I was in the writing groove and then it struck, mercilessly. It camouflaged itself, and it has taken a couple of days for me to see it for what it is.

But I see you now, fear, little f, and I am telling you again, you don't live here anymore.

And so mote it be. Vanquished.

Time to write.

Vulnerability

I plugged my USB into my laptop four and a half minutes ago. Brene Brown's Vulnerability TED Talk came on, and I'm now fighting the urge to fight back tears. Let them flow, Tina, let them flow.

Weird response, you might think. And, yes, I would usually agree. The tears pricked as Brene said that whilst she wanted to get her work out to the world, a part of her has worked hard to engineer staying small.

My tears pricked because I noticed how much I have grown. This resonated with me this time last year; that fear of abundance, of an audience, of people bearing witness to my life, in its totality. This means, the bad shameful stuff as well as the weird and the good.

We are, all of us, a whole package.

People have told me (and god love all of you who have because you have empowered me even further) that they respect the courage I show to post my life on the internet. It has taken me a long time to see this courage they speak of, but they are right. For me, I've always replied that whilst I know there is an audience reading, I don't really know there is an audience reading.

When I write, I write mostly for myself: what is it that I need to most hear to empower me to heal, to process, to grow. Sometimes I write for a particular person, to validate their experience or response, sometimes I write to expose or to teach, but mostly it is for myself. As Beyoncé sings, I was here; a record that I existed and that I live.

Back to being small, this was me. I wanted my 'wisdom' out there, I wanted to be seen, I wanted to be noticed, but not really. Because what if people don't get it, or don't like me, or think I'm weird, or think I'm a fool.

Yep. What if.

Who cares.

My truth is my truth. And my truth can change, and can grow, and that is okay.

I don't necessarily want to be big. But, I do want to be. And, just being now, is enough. I trust that I will put things out there and the consequences will be what they will be. My foundation is strong and won't be shaken.

I think I feel a little nervous about my book on my healing journey through sexual abuse (as part of a traumatic childhood). Maybe a little vulnerability and a little shame lingering, and I think that's okay. We all go through stuff as children that impacts who we become, positive and negative, and it's okay. The first step in healing is acknowledging this. As Dr Phil says, You can't fix what you don't acknowledge.

So, acknowledgement comes first. We each need to hold our head up high and speak our truth. Acknowledge what happened, acknowledge the impact, acknowledge the desire to change, to grow, to bloom.

None of us deserve to feel small. Our experiences and who we are, are significant. And valid. We don't need to justify or validate them for others, our knowing is enough.

And, our desire to be big does not serve us in the telling of our truth, because if we desire to be big we stop being authentic, and we start to behave to please others rather than to serve our own higher interests. And this is disingenuous.

We can only heal when we acknowledge what has been 'done' to us (marked this way because I believe we choose) and acknowledge the impact it has made, good and bad. And, truly own ourselves in every sense. And, when we reach that point, it no longer matters whether we are big, or have an audience, or are noticed, because we come to knowing that we are enough, just as we are.

This did not end or go where I expected it might. I hope you get something from it; I'm almost ready to write.

🙏🏻🦋

A Focus on the Dark

Write the book you wanted to read when you were younger.

Thank you, Higher Self.

I had the title for this post but then became stuck. Where to from here? Not dissimilar to when I start first writing a novel or this new book. I have massive inspiration, can't wait to get started, and when I do, I start tripping over myself.

It is temporary. It is vital. And, it is very annoying.

My question was going to be, what would you want to read? My Higher Self responded as above.

The first couple of chapters will outline my personal experience with abuse, both sexual and physical. Later on in the book, I focus on the emotional and psychological impact of this.

Fractured memories is how I have titled it. I remember snapshots and sound bytes. Nothing else really. This frustrated me for a long time. People need proof and they need to know what happened for you to be credible, for it to be validated. Sometimes this isn't possible for a variety of reasons (after all, even if you do remember it in excruciating detail, you may not be able to voice it).

The impact is a self-doubt and a feeling that you are creating something bigger than it needs to be. Not entirely true. This doubt starts to manipulate your confidence in other areas, detracting from your sense of self and belief in self. Questions sometimes erode trust.

How do we move past this?

Expression. Stand in your truth. Even if you can't articulate it to others just yet, say it to yourself. Own what you do remember. Trust those feelings. Work through them.

Another person's perception of your story is just that, perception. They aren't living it. And if your perception is a little blown out, working through it will bring peace to that need too. If we are feeling something, it is coming from somewhere that needs to be addressed for health. Trust it. Work through it. Heal it.

You will be okay.

The Importance of Voice in Healing Trauma

We all experience some type of trauma during our lifetimes; it is inevitable. The type of trauma can range from childhood trauma (accident, disability, abuse, you get the gist) to losing a child or parent or grandparent or friend or partner, or rape, unemployment, anxiety, the list is endless.

We are all different and we all come from different places; however, I believe that if we are to heal from this trauma, get to a point where we can think about it without anxiety, stress or pain, we need to give it a voice.

For me, the voice first came through when dealing with referrals at school, kids disclosing to me about their own abuse and/or trauma. I would then journal, always trying to get it out of my head so that it couldn't fester. My voice, unbeknownst to me at the time, has also shown itself through tattooing. My tattoos are all markers of moments, experiences and memories. Intermittently, I have journaled and spoken my truth during my life. In mid 2014, I started blogging, expressing my voice through written word to a larger audience.

As a result, I can speak about the truth of my experiences safely. Rarely does talking about, even my IVF journey, bring me residual pain that still needs to be resolved. Finding my voice and sharing my experiences has lessened the impact of the trauma.

It is through sharing (which requires a voice) that I have processed the events, re-lived them enough that they no longer hurt, and ultimately, become grateful for them because I am a better person as a result of them.

I would not be as empathetic, as compassionate, as sensitive, as loving, as resilient, or as inspiring without each of the traumas that I have survived and flourished from.

Finding and reclaiming my voice has been a long journey, starting from when it was first silenced when I was very young. Unfortunately, there are no quick fixes to healing trauma. For me though, finding and using my voice has been integral.

My voice is not your voice. But there will be a voice that suits/fits you. It might come through painting, or fitness, or drawing, or dancing, or running groups, or volunteer work, or traveling, or it could be like mine, through writing. I implore you, if you have suffered and endure trauma, give it a voice.

Share the experience. You never know whom you may help.

You can explore this journey with me further on my Facebook page Tina K Meyer.