Bear & Gratitude

This post is in gratitude to Bear, who has walked with me longer than I knew.

Bear came to me around 5 years ago in a shamanic journey/meditation. When I trained in Reiki Drum a couple of years ago 2 male black Bear came to me.  

Today in therapy I faced up to some truly sadistic behaviour from my parents as a child. Bear came and flanked me on either side as I worked through this, leading me gently away and above a body in extreme pain.

Bear communicated he had been with me then, had been with me throughout my life. My sense of gratitude to Bear is deeper than any words can express. Thank you Bear.

Prayer and Dissociation

Repeated early trauma will frequently lead to dissociation, a separation of the self from the body in order to survive the reality of what the body is being subjected to. Structural Dissociation in some degree may occur (for more on this, I found http://www.complex-trauma.eu/?p=307 to be of great help).

In indigenous shamanic cultures dissociation is seen as soul loss, where a part of the soul takes flight. This fragmented soul-part can be brought back through practices such as soul retrieval.

In prayer, I have always struggled with the sense that there is a veil between myself and God/divinity; a veil I would now term a dissociative veil.

In my 20s I spent five years as a Carmelite nun, five immensely rich years, intending to dedicate myself to God for the rest of my life. What I did not realise at the time was just how devastating the trauma I had experienced as a child through abuse had been,  and the impact that had had on me as an adult.  Living in community was highly triggering, but I had little idea of what it was triggering back to; what the emotional flashbacks were all pointing to. It became clear that I could not continue my life as a Carmelite, as I had been too damaged by my childhood; left too unstable for community life.

Now I know just how traumatised I was, and am grateful indeed for the trauma therapy (EMDR) I am now going for. I would liken this to the process of soul retrival, placed within a modern psychological framework. Fragmented parts of the soul are brought back. Yes, they are the dissociated emotional parts which carry traumatic memories, but specialist trauma therapy is able to put these in the past, where they belong.

Today I spent an hour in prayer in another Carmelite monastery chapel. A place of deep Healing, of Light, of Peace, and of Hope. Carmel stands as a witness to the Eternal, the Absolute, the One. It is uncompromising; asking that we give ourselves totally to that One. Yet that Eternal One does not want a mere sliver of who we are, a tiny fragment of who we are, a superficial persona. What that One calls us to be is the fullness of ourselves – because how can we relate to any B/being if we are splintered into dissociative fragments? The relationship will only be with a tiny part of who we are.

Called into the fullness of Life by that One, I know that One will also give me the strength to continue in this path of recovery, no matter how tough it is.

Amen.

 

Ogham-Saille

Last month, Fearn (Alder) accompanied me as a warrior in remembering the past, facing further emerging memories of childhood abuse. 

Today I harvested Saille (Willow) from my ogham. She greeted me with an unequivocal message: the deeper the pain, the deeper the trauma, the more we allow our emotions to carve out the inner depths of our being, the ever greater capacity for healing we have. Tough love from a truly beautiful tree.

Saille  generally is about intuition, emotion, sexuality, trauma, and physical illness caused by trauma. Martyn Pentecost gives us this message from Saille:

‘Never underestimate the value of who you are…My essence will help you to heal, to alleviate pain and dis-ease…My magic reminds you that you are an amazing person…Be exactly who you are and always cherish your uniqueness.’  

(Martyn Pentecost, The Little Book of Celtic Reiki Wisdom, mPowr Publishing 2015).

It seems we have to plunge ever deeper within to emerge into the fullness of who we are, which is our gift to the world. Sending this powerful essence out now to those who need it.

Blessed be. 

 

Sacred Space Interfaith Healing Ritual

Yesterday I shared a powerful healing Sacred Meal with an Interfaith Minister friend of mine.

It was largely to share within ritual space some of my journey with emerging memories of MDSA as a child. To share healing. To place this trauma in the hands of the One who is my Source, the One to whom I will return, and the One who is my Light along the way.

We blessed each others bodies with salt water. Blessed my lovely Brighid statue, which I surrounded with my Northern Tamarisk beads and gems sacred to Brighid.  

I shared my emerging memories in the form of a litany of grief: grief for the girl raped by her adoptive mother; grief for the girl who was made to experience oral sex at such a young age; grief for the girl who nearly died at her mothers hands; grief as well for a father unwittingly coerced into more covert sexual abuse.

These memories, written on a piece of paper, were placed along with my vows made into the hands of Brighid at Imbolc under her statue.

I am grateful for the sacred friendship offered. For a true Anam Cara. For the possibility of healing.