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Rachel Grace

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[20 Feb 2007|06:53pm]
It's been a while since I've logged on, so I just wanted to tell you that I'm doing okay. More than okay, actually. I feel as if I'm actually starting to work through a lot of stuff from my past, which is, of course, a good thing. My nightmares... they're not gone, but they're certainly a lot better. What I mean by that is... I'm fighting back now. Before I'd kind of just give up, but now I fight. My therapist says this is good... that my subconscious is seeking for a resolution.

I have two friends who know what all has happened to me, and they've been a tremendous source of support for me. They've helped me through triggers and flashbacks, and were there for me a month ago when there was a sexual predator loose in the area, going after people at our school. Rose has helped me just talk through things... rant... all that good ol' stuff whenever I'm having a difficult time. She helps me, gives me advice and such. Austin listens. I can't even begin to describe how helpful that is... to have somebody truly just listen to you. He's also started teaching me self-defense - which is SO EMPOWERING.

So, all in all, I'm doing great. I still have my low days - months, even, but I'm able to work through them with the support of those who love me. I don't know if I could be any more blessed than that.

Hope you all are doing okay.

Safe hugs,

Rachel Grace
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[27 Dec 2006|11:55pm]
I'm disgusted at myself. I feel like I've just hit this unpassable brick wall. Like I'm just running up to it again and again, bashing my head into the stone, hoping that somehow I'll even make a dent, because it's too hard to climb, and I keep falling back down again. I don't know how long it's going to take me to realize that physical pain, physical pleasure, whatever, isn't going to help me heal myself when I'm just using it to escape. After trying to escape, I just sit here, guiltier than before, just absolutely disgusted. I don't know... am I even explaining myself clearly?

It's been over two years now since that last time... it's so weird to think of that, because I don't remember the last time I went over two years. Was it before I turned six? Or even earlier than that? Or have I never gone two years without something happening? And yet, with each day that passes, I don't feel a sense of accomplishment, relief, or happiness... I just feel dread. I feel like nothing matters... I'm going to be raped again anyhow. And I don't know why I'm thinking like that. It's awfully pessimistic of me, and I'm not generally a pessimist. It's just... I've always had a sort of "sixth sense" in regards to these kind of things... I always know when something bad is going to happen, or when something bad has happened to somebody I care about. I don't know how, either. I can probably pick up subtle signals from people or something. But this... it's just so utterly unfounded! It's maddening!!! I'm just expecting it to happen, and wondering if, when it does, I'll actually have the courage to tell somebody this time. *headdesk*

I still can't sleep all that well either... I'm always having dreams of some sort. Even on the nights that I don't have nightmares (or, at least that I remember), I'm always dreaming that I'm doing something very active. When I wake up, I still feel tired, as if I haven't slept - after all, I've been running or jumping or swimming or whatever all night long. Sigh. One of these days, it'll get better... but until then, I'm driving myself crazy, or at least, moreso than I already am.

Well, if this makes no sense, it's probably because I haven't slept in over two and a half days. Blah.
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[05 Dec 2006|07:34pm]
flashbackCollapse )
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[18 Sep 2006|09:02pm]
A little over a week ago, I got in a fight with my dad. Anyhow, the whole thing culminated in him suddenly making some observations that were very close to the truth about how I'm feeling. I was freaking out a bit, but didn't really show it. Then he says, "I want to read you something". He takes out his computer, and proceeds to read an entry I made in _survivors_. Cue major panic attack complete with flashbacks.

I guess somebody was watching out for me though, because nothing really important was revealed. Basically, the entry was one I had made on vacation using his computer. Somehow, while deleting the internet history, that one entry URL wasn't erased. That could have been coincidence, but also - what about this? Not only was it that one page out of many that wasn't erased, but that one entry happened to be talking about me 'spacing out' - dissociating. Not once was the word "abuse" mentioned. So basically, my parents only know that I 'space out' - though I know they know something is wrong.

My dad asked me what _survivors_ was. I told him something strange that I know he didn't believe... but whatever. He said he wouldn't go browsing livejournal to find anything else, and I am forced to trust him on that.

My parents have agreed to get me a counselor. My introduction appointment is this coming Friday.

I guess everything worked out for good, but I'm really nervous about the appointment. Siiiigh.
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[31 Aug 2006|02:22pm]
In the book I got, the "Invisible Heroes" one, it talks a lot about how the trauma survivor becomes more in touch with the right side of their brains after the trauma. In a lot of ways, trauma actually rewires the brain in different ways to where the right side of the brain is strengthened. Knowing this can help a lot with healing, because it can help the individual become more in touch with themselves and their experiences while actively healing from them. Imagery is the best healing method known for this reason.

I've been working with imagery since I've learned that, and it's really been helping. I've found that when I've realized I'm starting to dissociate, there are things I can do to help myself reconnect with my body. The first one, which I discovered myself and expanded upon, is to sit somewhere, close my eyes, and count ten slow breaths. While doing it, I visualize what I am wearing, where I am, and what's around me - in vivid color, detail, and feeling. By the time I reach ten, I'm calm and in control. It also helps when I'm entering into a panic attack. Another thing I found, which I read in the book, is to close my eyes, breathe slowly, and visualize a type of spirit presence (I see it as a type of concentrated aura) that starts in the head, then moves slowly down the body, until it reaches the ground and is swallowed up. It helps me to get back into my body when I feel as if I'm 'floating away' to watch things from a corner.

Now, on to the reason I thought to write this.

Last night, before I went to bed, I was just feeling generally crappy. It was one of those nights where I just knew was going to end up having a flashback. So I'm laying in bed, eyes closed, and I decide to try a new type of imagery. It was the weirdest but best sensation I've had. I completely forgot that I was doing imagery, and actually started believing it was real. I'm getting ahead of myself though. But here's what I ended up Seeing.

I was facing the door to my room, and I heard a rustle of movement. A faint, pulsing light started growing brighter and brighter by me, fanning out, until there was a woman by me. She radiated a sense of warmth and caring from her, and I instinctively knew that I had no reason to be afraid. She was beautiful, with blonde hair that draped across a part of her face, coming to rest by her cheek. She took my hand in hers - I realized she wasn't solid, but yet still there. I could put my hand through hers, but yet it wasn't a chilly, clammy feeling I got when doing so, but a soft, caring immaterial touch. This woman - this angel - held my hand in hers and whispered to me, "Don't worry. You are safe. I am here with you. Nothing can hurt you anymore. You are beautiful, you are strong. You will heal, and I will be here with you. You may not always see me, but I will always be right beside you, protecting you." She put her hand on my forehead, and a golden light appeared, growing, until it was a little ball of light. It grew, expanding through my whole body, down to my toes - everywhere. As it covered the final parts of my body, it suddenly exploded outwards to where it formed a shining, golden outline a few feet from me, encircling my body. The light pulsed brightly, then disappeared. I realized that the angel had protected me - that because of this protection, nobody could hurt me again. I started to cry, but not tears of sadness and shame for once, but tears of happiness and joy. Then my door opened, and a figure darker than the darkest of night entered my room, coming towards me. I knew who it was. The angel stood up and said to the figure, "It is not yet your time. Your time has passed. Leave her be." Her light shone brighter and brighter, until the darkness was eaten up by the light. The figure was gone, and I was safe. By this time, I fully realized that by the Protection I had been given, I could not be hurt by the darkness. Crying again, I thanked her, and asked, "What is your name? Please, I must know." The angel smiled at me and told me, "You will know my name when the time has come. Just know that I am with you, and will always be with you, even when you cannot see me." Her light began to grow dimmer, until she disappeared. Yet, I knew she was there - just lurking out of sight, watching over me.

I woke up this morning without having any nightmares, remembering the Light that protected me.

And I know, I am safe. If that was imagery, it was amazing. Yet it feels like more than that - it feels almost tangible and real. Maybe it was.

I can feel the Light's aura inside of my chest, reminding me of its presence.
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[30 Aug 2006|10:24pm]
Healing - cut just in case there might be a triggerCollapse )
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[19 Aug 2006|10:31pm]
Long with triggers for a few thingsCollapse )
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[17 Aug 2006|10:28am]
Triggers for self-harmCollapse )
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[16 Aug 2006|11:13pm]
...Sometimes I even wonder if trying to heal is worth it. It only seems to be making things worse...
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[09 Aug 2006|04:19pm]
I have no idea what has gotten into my mother. But whatever it is, the bottom line is that she's being extremely emotionally abusive right now. She's acting as if she did nothing wrong at all. Incredulous, if you will. I don't know what to think. I can't think straight anymore. Maybe she wasn't at all, like she said. Maybe she was just ranting about the computer, and I took it the wrong way. But I know deep inside that that isn't true.

God. God. God. God. God. God. God.

I can't take it anymore right now.

But I think I figured it out... like she said, I was guilty. I overreacted. I'm to blame. I mess everything up, don't I?

I'm hypervenilating right now.

She's never acted this way before... ever.

What the hell is wrong???
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[04 Aug 2006|08:08am]
Cross-posted to _survivors_

I got to thinking this morning...

I daydream. A LOT. I notice that I do it at times when I'm feeling stressed out about one thing or another. I never remember what's going on in the real world at those times. Sometimes people see me, for instance, waving at somebody who isn't there (not that it's like a hallucination - I'm daydreaming that a person is there, and I'm waving at them). I'll start thinking of ways to hide something I don't want people to find... something that only exists in my daydream. I've done this as long as I can remember.

It just made me start to think... could this be a mild form of disociation? I know I disociate sometimes, just to the point where I'm feeling kind of spacey and disconnected from everything - to where I forget even the things I've really been looking forward to doing.

It's starting to become a real problem.. I never remember things I was told to do, and thus get in trouble for not doing them. Or, at school, I'll miss an entire lesson - even if it was something I was looking forward to hearing about. It's like I'm thrown into a dream, and can't get out.

What do you think?
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[26 Jul 2006|12:41pm]
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[25 Jul 2006|11:01am]
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[20 Jul 2006|09:31pm]
A poem I wrote after a trigger...Collapse )
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[18 Jul 2006|11:23pm]
If you all could take a few minutes and pray, I'd really appreciate it.

A boy from my brother's Boy Scout troop was in a really bad accident late this afternoon. He is described as being in "very critical condition", and his sister is in critical condition. As of right now, we don't know if he's expected to live, and if so, if he will ever recover.

Please pray for the boy and his sister, as well as for the family and friends as they go through this difficult time. Also pray for my brother and myself as we try to find out who this boy is, and if we know him.

Thank you so much.

-Rachel Grace
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[18 Jul 2006|08:59pm]
Hyperness, then some thoughtfulnessCollapse )

I don't think there's anything in here that'll trigger anybody... most of it is not related to abuse anyhow. I think I just love lj cuts.
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[11 Jul 2006|10:02pm]
Finally remembering good things about my past... cut for lengthCollapse )
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[07 Jul 2006|09:57pm]
Hey everybody!

I'm actually doing an update for once! Hah. Well, I updated yesterday, so I guess what I'm saying is that I'm actually updating two days in a row - a first, I think.

I just neeed to share this all with you:

I BROKE THE SILENCE!!!

You guys all know just how important that is - a real step in healing. I guess I'm just really amazed that I could actually go through with talking about it. You know I was worried about that yesterday.

So... let's see. It was kind of awkward at first, knowing that whatever was said would inevitably lead to a discussion that I was afraid to have.

I finally decided to write it out and show it to my friend. I was doing pretty good... but then I got all emotional. I guess I knew that would happen. :) Oh well. Guess what I found out? The friend of mine is also a survivor! I was not expecting that at all. WOW. That's all I can say, really.

I'm on a kind of emotional high/low right now, if that makes sense. It's all kind of... fresh again. But that's really okay right now.

-Rachel Grace
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[06 Jul 2006|09:28pm]
Hey! Sorry I haven't updated in a bit.

The camp went fine - WAY better than I expected. My assaulter was not there, so really, it was a time for me to confront my old fears and grow. I think I healed the most in that week than I have in a long time.

I've noticed something that I know is a direct effect of my abuse. I am terrified, and I mean TERRIFIED of telling people ANYTHING. It's quite absurd actually. I can't tell people what happened in a book. I can't tell people what part of a movie I liked best. I can't write personal thoughts in my diary - it's completely people-safe, full of things like, "I went to so-and-so's party today. It was a lot of fun. I hung out with so-and-so pretty much the entire time, and we ate way too much chocolate." Stuff that probably wouldn't be altogether too incriminating if found. My parents have also noticed this, and are getting angry, to say the least. I'm keeping pointless things a secret for no reason other than the fact that I can't be vulnerable - I must be strong all the time. I can't let other people see negative emotions. Once in a blue moon, it will happen, but I just CANNOT let myself tell people anything.

I took a blind leap today, and talked about that with a friend of mine. She ended up getting around to asking me what the root of the problem was. I, of course, know what it is, but I told her that it "wasn't something I want to talk about online." She was amazingly loving and caring about my inability to talk about whatever my "deep, dark secret" might be. Somehow she persuaded me to come over to her house tomorrow. We're going to have a whole chick flick day, and talk. I've decided that tomorrow I'm going to tell her about my abuse. I've just decided that it's something I HAVE to do. I'm really scared though. I've dreamed for so long of breaking the silence. I never believed that I'd actually do it.

Does anybody have any suggestions for how to go about talking about it? How do I keep myself calm? I'm so afraid.

-Rachel Grace
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[17 Jun 2006|10:47am]
Ugh. My email is still not working. So, if you have been emailing me, I'm still getting that all worked out.

Anyhow, has anybody heard from Micky? I haven't heard from him on livejournal (don't know about email obviously), so I'm kind of worried. Micky, if you read this, how are you???

----

As for how my life is, it's going okay. I have an old friend who I know knows something happened in my past... she doesn't know what, but she's asked me about it. It's not that I don't trust her; it's more that I haven't seen her face-to-face in about four or so years. But the very fact that she's praying for me has somehow made even the dreams mellow out considerably. At least, I don't think it was complete coincidence that the number of abuse-related nightmares drastically dropped the night after I talked to her. I've only had one since then, and for the first time, I woke up and was able to say "That was a dream. You're okay; you don't need to be afraid of this anymore. It was just a dream," and forget about it to the extent where it doesn't bother me at all. I consider that a major improvement.

Also, this coming week will "celebrate" the 2-year anniversary of when I met my assaulter (not the actual assault). I'm working at that same camp again; I will not allow myself to be afraid of going there because of what connections it may have to him. As in terms of my safety, I should be okay - there are people everywhere, and we have to check in with out stations every half hour per new regulations. We also have to have a buddy the entire time we're there, and even though I'll probably be paired with a guy, I've heard rumors that a few of my guyfriends are going to be there, so I'll see if I can work the system. The camp leader likes me anyhow (seeing as she lets me work there when it's meant to be worked by guys), so I don't see how it'll be any problem.

I guess, basically, I'm just so tired of hiding and avoiding these things, that now I'm just going to go out there and conquer my fears. Even if my assaulter ends up being there, I'll let him know that I'm not afraid of him. The camp is big enough though, that if I did see him, it would probably be in passing; the chances of us being assigned somewhere together are quite minute, if not virtually impossible.

Pray for my emotional strength during this coming week.

-Rachel Grace
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