Thursday, February 10, 2011

Broken

(If you are looking for FYBF, it is being hosted by MummyTime today. Apologies to Lori. Thank you dear Brenda, for picking up the slack, xx)


Falling. I am falling. For so long I’ve held it together.

People shake their heads, “You are so strong,” they say. “How do you do it?”

The answer is nobody does this without a cost. For six months I have parented alone with no respite. For six months I have lived in fear, ever vigilant, waiting for the axe to fall. For six months I have followed the rules of the system, pounded on the door of the system, waited for the slow cogs of the system to turn, been let down by the system.

My brother flew out for a few days recently. The kids were overjoyed. There was a different energy in the house. I had forgotten what it was like to have someone around to help out. He played with kids. He helped put them to bed. He bought dinner and cleared the table. Little things, but they meant the world. I cried when he left.

I keep telling myself I must hold out a little longer. One day, this will all be behind me. But for now, I have to keep going for my children. Eventually, I’ll have permission to move and I can get out of this house with its dark history. In another month, I’ll be in Australia where I can breathe easier. These markers, they give me hope.

But my body has said no. It has put a stop to everything and simply refused to keep going.

At work I stare at the computer screen but can’t focus. In the mornings I stand in the kitchen and look at my daughter’s lunch box and can’t remember what I was going to do with it. The simplest of daily tasks seem insurmountable.

This morning I asked my friend to come into my office. I sat there and cried and told her I needed help. She was wonderful and helped me connect with the right people. Apparently, what I’m experiencing is normal. To be expected under such circumstances. In my case it’s the result of trauma, social isolation (what family I have is thin and far-flung), sustained, elevated stress and the ongoing threat of violence. It’s a wonder I’ve lasted this long.

Now I am leaving to stay with family, so that I can rest while they help care for the kids.

I haven’t talked much on my blog about what’s been happening the last several months. I’ve held off for fear of retaliation, either litigative or physical. I haven’t seen my husband for six months, but isn’t it funny how I can still be silenced by the implicit threat of backlash? Such is the dynamic of abuse. Don’t speak or else.

But not speaking has cut me off from one of the few support networks I have. Not speaking does not keep me safe, by any stretch of the imagination. Not speaking has impeded my healing. And now, months later, I am broken.

I have made the decision to talk more openly about the difficult things, the scary things, the ugly things. Here. On Wanderlust. And I am taking time off to let myself heal. Between the two, I will find the strength to move forward and do the hundred things I need to do to get to the other side.



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85 comments:

  1. Take care, lovely. Thinking of you. xx

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  2. Love to you girlfriend, I am going to give you the biggest hug when you get here next month x

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  3. Textbook PTSD, Kristin. It's normal but you can get help, you will get helped - and you WILL be better! x bigstronglovehug from one survivor to the other x

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  4. I wish you so much happiness and hope in your future, you brave, beautiful woman. Let yourself be nestled in the love and care of those who cherish you; they will help you heal x

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  5. Focus on yourself.
    Will see you soon,

    Love mex

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  6. Rest up and take care of yourself. You will get there. x

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  7. Just sending love and hugs from across the sea x

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  8. I'm listening when you're ready, K. Just gotta push through the wall and complete your marathon. x

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  9. I was afraid of this. You've been through so much, more than anyone should ever have to, and it's been bound to take its' toll on you. God I hope with all my heart that you catch a break SOON.
    Meantime, take care of YOU, and if there's anything I can do just SAY SO. That's a genuine offer.

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  10. Although you probably feel frustrated by people telling you that "you are so strong", the really amazing thing is that you do possess the inner Strength to make it through all of this. Remember, everyone need a break, time to rest and refocus. You are not Broken, only a little stressed which is understandable.

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  11. This is what came to mind upon reading your post: “No one ever told me that grief felt so like fear.” (C.S. Lewis)

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  12. Take care of yourself, rest up, and find some laughter with your family.

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  13. Oh, Kristin, sending you the biggest virtual hug. Mrs Woog and I talked with lots of love about you yesterday and I can't wait to take you under my tuckshop-armed wing for a confidence-boosting style/shop session xxx

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  14. I had been wondering how you were going because you had been so quiet on the subject. Thinking of you, hang in there xo

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  15. Hugs, girl. I'll be so glad when you get moved!

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  16. Hoping you get some well needed help and rest, and some focus on yourself for the journey ahead.

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  17. Much love to you. I hope things start getting easier soon xoxox

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  18. I have no words to say excpet I am thinking of you and will pray you find a support network and a way through this diffcult time.
    You don;t have to be strong all the time (hugs)

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  19. Take care of yourself sweetheart.... hope the support from your family recharges your batteries and gives you the strength to carry on. Thinking of you....

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  20. I can't wait to meet you.

    The most strongest people of all are the ones who admit they get broken, every once in a while. True.

    XOX

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  21. Take care. Rest. Let others help. Sleep. You will need your strength yet. Thinking of you x

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  22. Sorry to hear you have been having such an isolating and oppressing time. I hope this next month gets easier and your return to OZ is cathartic x

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  23. I'd been thinking it was a little quiet. Thinking of you and sending you love and strength. Cannot WAIT to see you at the conference!

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  24. Take the time, you need it. Let others help you. It is bloody hard. I collapsed in a heap over Christmas, it was all just too much. And even now, I can't get back into my "old" life. I want out, I want relief, I want freedom.... I hope you can get them soon.

    You are never far from my thoughts...

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  25. You are going through some heavy shit. Hell, you are getting smothered in it.

    Hold on. Hold on. You will make it through the storm. When you fall, there will be someone to pick you up, dust you off and get you moving again.

    Cry. Break down. Write.

    xo

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  26. Sorry things are broken for you Kristin. We are here if ever you want to share. x

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  27. Sending you healing thoughts and I'm glad you're giving yourself some time to step back. Enjoy the break :) x

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  28. You are gonna get to the other side my friend. Massive squishy hugs to you.xxx

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  29. You cannot give what you're not getting yourself. Take your break, soak up all the love and understanding you can get, and then you will have that to give to those precious kids of yours.

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  30. Kristin - hope you are okay. I am looking forward to seeing you next month. Let's laugh ourselves silly and put Cornflakes in Mrs Woog's bed. Whoops that's my bed too. xxx

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  31. Sending lots of healthy healing restful vibes your way Ms Wanderlust. Take time to rebuild and refresh. I know little about your circumstances but feel your pain and exhaustion from your post. Blowing beautiful winds of refreshment your way .... caz

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  32. Breath. Lomg. Deep. Hard. And sleep. xxx

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  33. Really, really thinking of you. I'm glad you have family to stay with for a while so you can heal. You have shown such strength just to get to this stage. You've got more of it to draw on, I just know it. Hugs. xo

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  34. We are here and we will listen to your words. We will pray for your healing.

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  35. Kristin.... this post is strong. This is strength. Reaching out, teaching your children that they NEED people, always, no matter how strong they (or you) are. So glad you are able to do that. Wish I was going to the conference to meet you and all the other amazing bloggers out there... next one maybe :)

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  36. There is nothing more noble, terrifying and pure than recognising that you are human. Nurture yourself well. You are beautiful and you deserve all the love and support you have been offering far and wide.
    Love from a stranger
    x

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  37. I am so glad you are talking about it! I don't know how you have managed for so long! I had my parents to help and friends when I went through difficult times.
    Strange how violence can silence us. But only as long as we let it! You have done nothing wrong, and it needs to be addressed! By the strongest of voice: on black-and-white!
    Great post! Glad you have reached out when you needed help!

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  38. So sorry to hear of your troubles - and apologies for not commenting more often. Just want you to know you're not forgotten, even by those of us who don't know you.

    I hope tomorrow is a better day for you.

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  39. Much love for the healing that will take place xx

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  40. I have been reading your blog for a little while but have never commented (don't you hate lurkers)

    All I can say is this. Look after yourself. Look after your kids. Hang onto the fact that you will get through this (because you will). Let the people who love you help.


    Take very good care. And know lots of people are thinking of you.

    xx

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  41. Why did the chicken cross the road? the same reason you are coming for a trip to Australia, I reckon this trip will help you, mentally and physically get to the chicken's most desired destination. Lots of love and sorry for stupid analogy. xxx

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  42. My love and prayers are with you Kristin. I am so glad you are getting some help for a little while and taking time for a break to try to heal a little.

    Mich x

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  43. PTSD. It was bound to happen sooner or later. You've been through so much. Accept all the help that's offered, take time off from blogging, do whatever it takes. We'll be here when you're ready. Look after you.

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  44. such a hard road you travel... keep on walking mate - one day you will reach base.

    Meanwhile do what you need to do - write it, say it, feel it.

    Oh and when you go to the conference ask for Pods. Ask everyone to help you find them - in fact request from here that they be prepared for your arrival. Pods will help cure you, promise. especially the Mars ones!

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  45. Oh hon, you've been through so much. You'll come through it. You're a survivor. Keep that writing flowing, words have such healing powers. Thinking about you and sending you warm hugs xx

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  46. So glad to hear that you have asked for help and you are taking action to ease the stress. I don't like to wish away time, but I hope the countdown to the conference goes quick for you. Wishing you strength and peace of mind xx

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  47. Oh Kristin, hugs to you dear lady.

    These lines are for you:

    "It takes more courage to reveal insecurities than to hide them, more strength to relate to people than to dominate them, more 'manhood' to abide by thought-out principles rather than blind reflex. Toughness is in the soul and spirit, not in muscles and an immature mind."- Alex Karras.

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  48. I don't know you, but big hugs to you! I wish you the best for your recovery and healing in this hard time:)

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  49. I am so glad you asked for help so that you can have some rest and time to look after yourself. Big hugs to you xo

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  50. Just know that I'm thinking of you. Been treading water myself this week, haven't even made it into my reader until tonight for over a week. I have posts I still have to red for the GOFA! Will email you soon. Take care. Accept the help. Much love. X

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  51. Oh love, I'm so sorry but I'm not entirely surprised. It probably seems impossible on top of everything else but you need to take care of you.

    Rest up and drink plenty of tea. xxxx

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  52. Amazing. That's you. I'm so, so, so glad you are asking for help. What you have been through is MAJOR. Don't underestimate it. And I will be here to support you as you talk/write about it. So many will appreciate it. Especially those who are hiding under another's hand, also in fear.

    Break the silence, I say. And I hope you rest lots. Your body is begging you to. xx

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  53. Sending lots of love. And I've been wondering when this would happen. You can only go so long. I'm so glad you're seeking out the help you need.

    Remember this, too: when bone fractures and breaks heal, that part is even stronger than it was before.

    You will be too, someday. I promise.

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  54. hugs to you hon. I'm so glad you have some family that you can stay with for a bit and to help you. 16 years later and I am still drip feeding reality to parts of my family who could never deal with the reality of what I lived with.

    I know sometimes it seems like one step forward and two steps back, but you will get there.

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  55. Yeah you really need to take care of yourself right now. Lots of hugs to you xx

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  56. You went beyond running on empty. Get some rest. Take some time. You've been strong and a wonderful Mom, but everybody needs help sometimes. Take care of yourself!

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  57. Sending hugs and good thoughts for all the healing time you need. Take care of yourself because you are the core of strength and love for your children and an inspiration for all.

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  58. Stay strong. Keep reaching out. You are perhaps in the dark and scary night of your soul, but you are surrounded by light and love. Lean into it...you are an inspiration to all.

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  59. Completely understandable. We are here hun just waiting to be able to offer more support and more help. Arohanui (maori for with all my love!) Vxx

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  60. Keep listening to yourself. You know what you need. Follow your heart.

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  61. Take care xx sending you ((hugs)), big ones! Hope they help xx

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  62. There comes a time when 'holding it together' is too hard. Believe me, I know.
    Take some time for yourself Kristin. It will be worth it.
    We'll be thinking of you.
    x

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  63. Totally understandable. Look after yourself, it won't be long til you're down under with us, feeling a world away xox

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  64. I'm glad you have such caring friends and family. And glad you have turned to them.

    Take some time to look after you and rest up. After all it seems the Aussie Mummy Bloggers are going to make you party hard once you get down under.

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  65. Your health and the safety of you and your children is of the utmost importance now. Do what you have to do. we'll be here when you get back. Good luck.

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  66. sending you love, light and strength to do all the things you need to heal and mover forward. As always your words are inspirational and I hope some of that inspiration comes right back to you.

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  67. Thank you for all the beautiful comments. xoxo

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  68. Crap, crap, crap. Not fair!! Not fair that you are doing it so tough, not fair that you are the victim of the system as well now. Please take the time to heal, allow yourself to let go a little (of the tension) while you are away. Can't wait to give you a hug in Sydney. Much love to you and your gorgeous kids. xxxx

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  69. Kristin, my yoga teacher was speaking this morning of the image of your heart as a lotus flower that pushes its way through the mud to blossom in the sun. My intention was focused on you - that you are able to blossom... Thank you for sharing your story - there are many others who are silent and also suffering in one way or another.

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  70. Kakka, are you coming to the conference? I'm so thrilled. It will be wonderful to meet you in person. xx

    Anne Marie, thank you so much. xo

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  71. Sending lots of healing energy your way...or just space "to be". May the warmth of Australia be just what you need. Lots of love, Katherine

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  72. I'm so glad you wrote this post, both for yourself and for others in a similar position.
    "Staying strong" can be highly over-rated. Your mind and body are telling you to let go for a while. In fact they are insisting on it.
    So let go and take care.
    Big hugs. Thinking of you.

    Trish
    x0x0

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