To mirror some wonderful words, we are warriors, you are a warrior, you are pushing through against the odds and making sacrifices. I tell you, before I knew about the MS community I felt so very alone in my struggles with trauma, but after arriving here and reading so many testimonies to surviving trauma and taking on life in recovery, I was inspired.
A short story I think is relevant to share involves my brother in law (deceased). He was on dialysis for about 13 years. I bonded with him for the last 5 years of his life and we got close. I was the last person he spoke to before passing, and family told me he was calling for me in his last moments while I had to be at work. Difficult time, but... It is important to acknowledge that, yes he is now free from his life of pain and suffering, but it means SO MUCH more that he persevered for all of those painful years and he was as active as he could be. He had a very weak body (13 fractured ribs, broken hip and 2 breaks in leg) he didn't like crying but he would cry from pain and frustration every day. It wasn't pleasant to witness him in this condition, it was heartbreaking! But it showed me such example of strength and perseverance for his only daughter and his family that he loved us. He stuck it out to the bitter end.
That life lesson stays with me in the ways I carry on with my own chronic pain and trauma. I am intent on surviving this to be here for my family, and doing as much as I can to not let my conditions defeat my quality of life. Yes it's already difficult and bad, but I am still able to make it better and I do as much as I can. We just do the best that we can each and every day, and when it is too bad a day it is okay to recognize we are in pain and have disadvantages in life, but I keep room in my heart to keep on living for those that love me and those that I love. It isn't always easy, it's almost never easy. I enjoy the breaks I get..
On the discussion of suicide. I've committed suicide when I was 13 and I failed because I'm still here, and I continued for years to subject myself to dangerous and cruel situations that damaged me. I can't reverse the damage I allowed myself to suffer, but I can focus a lot of self compassion and patience as I try to carry on. I've known many people to take their own lives and many I miss often, others I've known to have their lives robbed from them without choice, and I mourn them as well.
I can't tell you that your life was not that bad just because you survived, and I don't suggest that at all! We can't even know of all the ways we might motivate or inspire others in their own lives. It is different for our invisible disabilities, but we can make our pain and perseverance visible by sharing what we've been through and just showing that we are still here. Obviously it is more apparent in individuals with visible disabilities that they struggle living but they do it every day.
Again, I am really sorry for all of the ways you were abused and improperly cared for. Thinking of you brother
Thank you for such a thoughtful story. It is sad to see someone like your Brother in law struggle in life with so many broken bones! (Only bone I ever broke was my left thumb when caught in a car door! I was 4. I tried to open the door but because the car was parked on a slope, I was pulling the door against gravity. I asked my sister to help, and she just sat there! then BANG! OUCH! HOLLERING!. Our dad had just gone into the lawyers office to sign some papers for a mortgage. Beautiful sunny morning. I remember everything that morning like it was yesterday. Then dad rushed me to the docs office who all he could do was to wrap my thumb in gauze and tape it up. At 4, bones like that are mostly soft form not fully calcified. My mother happened to be in at the docs office, don't know why, (doesn't matter) but the doc said to her - Do you know who that screaming child is? He's your son D, Your husband just brought him in with a broken thumb!
Funny thing is I don't remember the pain anymore! Wish I could do that with my mental pain and anguish.
Why do we torture ourselves with being unable to forget the memory of our mental pain? I'm sorry you attempted suicide at age 13. I was 13 when I first kind of contemplated it, the next year I was seriously planning it and one night came very close. Some would argue that dying by suicide is the easy way out, but it really is not that easy or simple. It's a tough choice to make, especially for a young teen. For those of us who have contemplated suicide, but survived, something of a higher power must be helping us through our difficult times. I guess we just have to believe! Believe that tomorrow will be better, believe that we will be stronger, and believe that somehow we will do more than just survive. I sure wish I could believe all those things, I talk about them, but I still struggle with those ideals myself.
The abuse and neglect we live through as a child remains with us for life. I never ever have taken my leather belt to either son. Only ever swatted their behinds when they mis behaved, Never even hard enough to attempt to hurt them, but just enough to let them know that what they did was not what I asked them not to do. Then they stopped. I never tried to make them cry. I was a boy scout leader / cub leader years ago, and I treated every boy with the respect that he had the right to. I had this rule I made up because the boys were swearing. I guess being 11 - 12 yrs old just trying to sound big! Anyways, when caught I made them do 20 pushups. They were never perfect form, but they did them. The swearing decreased, the boys took pride that they were able to show off their strength to the others. One weekend at camp, one boy swore in his tent. I told him to get out "here" and now and do his pushups. "But, Scouter D, I'm only in my underwear!" Doesn't matter C, it's nothing we all haven't seen before. He came out, did his pushups and went back in and got dressed. I suppose there might have been perhaps a moment of embarrassment, but he did them and that was that. He now works with the police department thousands of kms away from here, a different province. He is married, with children now, and is having a great time.
So that pretty much sums up my "corporal" punishment, never to hurt, never to harm, but make them stronger and learn from mistakes. It is so sad that "WE" here, have had to go through events that should never ever have happened. Why me? If only we could answer that question! It is not a simple question! Nor, is the answer any simpler. I guess all we can say is that it is an unfortunate part of life.