It is the Christmas season. A time of warmth and family for some, but also a time of loneliness and depression for others. For me this year, it is a little of both.
I spent this evening at church helping herd sheep, goats, and one very stubborn donkey into and out of the living nativity scene. Last years pageant was a very emotional one for me. When I was a teenager we had a similar pageant, started by the same pastor that began the tradition here. I had only been attending the church here for a couple of months last Christmas. Hell had been breaking loose inside of me over past abuse issues as I began building a relationship with a new pastor in the same denomination. I remember sitting and wondering, "Would I still be around next year for the pageant." Now I wonder about about 2008.
Tonight brought back a lot of thoughts of this past year. Times with Tom, trying to work through my fears and emotions; phone calls to Bob, my first abuser; and finally a day of confrontation and closure for me as I faced Bob with Tom by my side. It has been quite a year.
I find myself wondering where I will be next year. Will more issues be settled inside of me? Will I finally have closure with the denomination as a whole? Will I have finished dealing with the shame I have carried for so long over the second pastoral sexual relationship?
I find myself now in the thick of dealing with that second relationship. Tonight while herding the very stubborn donkey, my hand was caught between the rope and the stall we were trying our best to tug him in to. I yelled pretty loudly as the rope began to feel more like a vice. A couple of blood vessels were popped but some ice and Gladys' wrapping it and it felt a lot better.
Gladys is Tom's wife. She is also the church nurse. And, I am transferring my emotional stuff all over her. Transference is one of my best accomplishments! Helpful when I realize it and can use it to find freedom.
Minton's wife Sue was also a nurse and one time wrapped my knee for me after an injury offering me the same kind intervention. The replay of history hit my emotions before they hit my understanding. I went into the restroom and cried over the pain I was feeling without a clue as to why I felt such intense sadness. An hour or so later and the light bulb came on. The parallel between the two situations had brought long buried emotion to the surface.
I don't know how to explain to those of you that read my blog, the power of past emotions. I wanted to run to Gladys for approval. I wanted to apologize for something I never did to her. I feel so much shame over my behavior with Minton and how I chose to stab Sue in the back when I crossed the line with her husband.
Shame is surfacing everywhere. My past two nights sleep have been interrupted by multiple dreams of abuse and agents seeking me out for abusing other children. I have woken with shudders of grief, waves of confusion, and a nauseated stomach.
Yet, all this is good. Hard but good. It has taken 7 years of work to get here to the place that I can now face this tragedy. I know that I am on the verge of a tremendous healing. I feel so alone. I know that my therapist, Dan, understands. I wonder if others who have dealt with this type of issue understand or am I truly alone in this venture. And I am aware that many are in my life who have no clue as to what I am dealing with or the tragic depth of pain and destruction it has carved into my soul.
Pastoral sexual misconduct caused me to lose so much. I just want someone to put their arms around me and understand.