Understanding How I Came To Be

Drawing of the author and her brain sitting with the pain and surrounded by darknessI will fight very hard to stay as I am. Correction, my brain will fight very hard to stay as I am. But I don’t want to stay the way I am.

The way I am is not working for me. I no longer want to be in pain, spending time running from my pain or ignoring my pain.

To go forward, I must go back, back to the beginning of it all. And in many ways, the end of it all too. The end of what I think my life could have been.

Revisiting My Pain Past

There is something about revisiting the past. I haven’t done that in a very long time. I have avoided thinking about it because it was painful. And I am a huge fan of avoiding pain.

My life wasn’t all pain. There were good times too. Unfortunately, the painful times overshadowed the good times. And it was the pain that shaped me.

Comfortable in My Pain

It is one of the reasons that I am comfortable in the pain. I know that I shouldn’t want to stay within that pain, wrap myself in it like a warm blanket. It is familiarity. It is known.

I like knowing things; I like knowing what to expect and what to know is coming down the road. I want to plan, even if that means that the plans don’t work out. I will still plan so that I know.

 Pain is like that too. Not that I plan to be in pain or have pain, but the mental anguish that I live with every day is comfortable to me because I know how it feels. These other things, other feelings, I don’t understand them. It is a known entity.

Familiar Pain

Growing up knowing, being able to be familiar was a finite commodity. My world was kept so chaotic, first by my father and then by my mother. Being able to have something familiar was so important, even if that familiarity was emotional pain.

Like my journey away from alcohol, my journey away from my pain is unfamiliar. It is not something that I would have done willingly. And even now, leaving that familiar space is terrifying.

My mind developed not to have peace. My brain developed to be on the lookout for danger constantly. My brain kept the pain in the forefront so that I would survive.

That is what is my familiarity. My comfort zone is pain and danger.

Choosing My Story

We choose the stories to tell. For so long, I chose a different story. It wasn’t an untrue story. It only was missing lots and lots of pieces. Some might say it was missing the central theme; pain.

In part because I was sitting in pain, but I didn’t want to admit that I was. I wanted people to see me as this strong person who no one could hurt. It’s the post of the switch. I hadn’t remembered that or thought about that in years.

I am now changing the story that I choose to tell. That doesn’t make any of the stories that I have shared before untrue. They are all my stories. But now I write about my truth. And my truth includes my pain. They are intertwined together. I need to unravel them, to pull them apart.

I am hoping I will eventually set my mind free, to be peaceful. To sit with peace and not pain. 

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