I was sitting in front of my computer at work. My personal email was open. I forget what I was about to do, when it happened. I had recently read a book, “When will I Be Enough” and in it I found a description of my mother–to a ‘T’, right down to some of her sayings…This made me rethink my understand of my world, who I am, which stories from my childhood were true or why they were not. My mother was a narcissist.
Picture yourself in complete blackness. Quiet, damp, like a dudgeon built using stone for the walls. Now, hear the creak, from an old horror movie as a large wooden door opens a crack. A split forms in the stone wall and a blare of bright sunlight hits your unprepared eyes. This is how I felt, at work, when the memories that I kept hidden from myself flooded back into my awareness.
I quickly typed into an open email, until it became overwhelming. Every severe, intense emotional sensation was overlapped all at once. It seemed to be hitting me in my chest, at the base of my neck. It felt as though the sheer power of the energy would cause my chest to explode and my face to rip open from the inside. I locked my computer, got up and went to hide in the washroom.
The next morning, a time when I generally write, I sat down at home with the intention of examining one of the memories that I had been flooded with. Nothing came. They were gone again, hidden behind that stone wall in my memory. Inaccessible. This is how we protect ourselves from the pain. This is how we keep from reliving the emotional trauma day after day.
Unfortunately, I recognize that this wall must come down, stone by stone. I need to examine and process these memories so that so much of my resolve is not used up keeping the wall intact. Unprocessed emotion stays with you. It jumps out when least expected or when something in your life triggers a part of what you have stored. It has been blamed for addictions, depression and disease.
I opened the draft of the email that I made my notes in and I was able to look at it and examine a single memory. This is the best way for me to deal with this new revelation. Unfortunately, my fortress is no longer intact and I find that I’m bursting into tears while driving, watching television and while I am alone. I caught myself, yelling at myself during a particularly long drive. Thankfully, I was alone at the time. Not pleasant, but I think it is probably necessary. More stories to come. I’ll post them here.
I wrote my first book, (above) before I knew that my mother was a narcissist.