Startling Power and Perspective From Upside-Down

My ability to invert fully has not been a high priority in my recovery; it's been months since I even bothered trying.  One effect of my post-concussive syndrome is that while I retain my ability to handstand, an attempt results in nausea, dizziness, disorientation--or a crazy-feeling bout of crying just because I feel weird. I … Continue reading Startling Power and Perspective From Upside-Down

Bad Memories and The Power Of Secure Attachment

The week of the Kavanaugh hearings I have flashbacks.  I'm lying on my yoga mat in my boyfriend's bedroom while he works downstairs. I'm driving as I catch sight of my abuser strolling toward me near the courthouse.  Bile rises in my throat, my knuckles turn white, and my heart is pounding so loudly it … Continue reading Bad Memories and The Power Of Secure Attachment

Sticks, Stones and Perspective on First Date Kisses

My abuser used to joke about me being a shitty kisser.  He'd needle me about how he put up with it on our first date.  We met for coffee, which turned into hours of talking and then dinner.  He wore a leather jacket and gave me his arm when we walked.  He made sure to … Continue reading Sticks, Stones and Perspective on First Date Kisses

Healing and Unconditional Positive Regard

On Saturday morning I wake from disturbing dreams: of my abuser coming after me--and of my cat purring in my arms while I rub my face against her silky neck and say to my friend "I know she's died, but she feels real."  Of course, Kira did die and I'm awake only a few moments … Continue reading Healing and Unconditional Positive Regard

Healing In Community: I Am Safe Here

It's my last morning at Danielle's house.  I wake, meditate and go for one last run along the Eno River, slower than I'd like.  I do pull-ups in the master bedroom. I feel heavy and weak and irritable, but I am determined and I get them done.  Pixie the cat paces around me while I … Continue reading Healing In Community: I Am Safe Here

I Honor the Light Within Me; I Am Unstoppable

I’m driving home from a long day. The road is busy and my body is stiff with fear. Still, there’s something different in my countenance. I’m afraid, but full of determination. I turn over some of the words that have been spoken to me this week—the validation, the affirmation, the support and the love. I … Continue reading I Honor the Light Within Me; I Am Unstoppable

A Brutal Catharsis, and the Victory of Whipping Cream

I take a deep breath and direct myself onto highway 40 going West.  I carefully manage the space cushion around me the whole drive, except for once when a big Jeep speeds up too close behind me.  I begin to hyperventilate, my heart racing, and as it pulls into the next lane I see spots. … Continue reading A Brutal Catharsis, and the Victory of Whipping Cream

Friendship and Nature: A Beautiful Morning

Maddie arrives well after nightfall--after work and grocery shopping and the long drive to spend a night in the woods with me.  Maddie, my old favorite sparring partner from Muay Thai, is full of adventure and hope. She's stood by me, though I know she doesn't always understand and I'm afraid of asking too much … Continue reading Friendship and Nature: A Beautiful Morning

On Suicide, Shame, and Small Acts of Courage

I am staying at a friend's house while she's away.  It is a beautiful, spacious place.  It is quiet.  I love it here.  But after I drop off another friend who can't keep me company all day, I am indescribably miserable. It hits me the moment he's out of the car and I wail all … Continue reading On Suicide, Shame, and Small Acts of Courage