There’s one thing I’d never been quite able to grasp till now, and that’s ownership of my past. I spent years working through names and personas, trying my best to distance myself from what was happening and what I was feeling. I spent years terrified to telling someone; anyone in fact, what my past was because the words didn’t feel right when I said them. I didn’t want to be a victim or someone to be pitied. I wanted to be someone who people could look at and say, ‘They made it through.’
When I first started this project I had no idea how important to me it would become. I wanted to do mostly for the fact that if it was in print then it didn’t have to be inside of me anymore. I thought that if I wrote it out then it wouldn’t be a part of who I was anymore. I was wrong about that.
Writing these parts of my life down and being able to see them through the eyes of outsiders has been the most important thing I’ve ever done in my effort to recover. I gave me distance of what had happened and it gave me perspective to see beyond my own negativity and remember some of the times when my life wasn’t so dark.
There was one thing that I never expected to come from this endeavour though: the ability to own my past.
Writing it all down made it easier to think about and easier to talk about. If the words were too hard to say then if someone needed to know, they could just read the words instead. I actually prefer the thought of them reading it now though, because here, in this form, it’s not about me telling anyone besides myself. It’s my own dialogue and it’s allowed me to finally come to terms with the things I’ve always hated about my past, and learn that there isn’t anything to be ashamed of.
I’ve learnt that this is my past and this is my story and I can tell it anyway that I want to. It’s not always pretty and it’s not always easy and there have definitely been times when it hurt more than I ever thought it could.
But it’s all mine. It’s part of me and I own it.
It’s filled with mistakes and misunderstandings and many, many times when I should’ve known better. It’s filled with times I’ve only ever survived and other times when I’ve learnt to live.
So I want to do something new with this. By now you’ve read everything that made my life hard, but now I want to share the times in my life that made it bearable.
No more negativity and no more hiding. This is my past and it’s not as lost as I once thought it was.