Wednesday, September 17, 2008

She's Come Undone

For the past week or two, but mainly the past five or six days, I have been engrossed in a book called She's Come Undone. It was apparently one of the books featured in Oprah's Book Club but I don't pay much attention to Ms. Winfrey so I was only driven to read it because of one word - undone. This is a word I've used to describe myself for the last 7 years. What I meant was that the sugary sweet persona of happiness I tried to perfect was unraveling and I was powerless to stop it. A couple of months ago I made a promise to myself to not be ashamed of the things I go through; to be just as honest about my highs as my lows. The last two years of my life have been one continuous low and I have been doing everything in the world to avoid acknowledging the fact.

Repression. My plan had been to repress everything I have been feeling and try to resume life as usual. I was going to ignore everything that was going on around me and throw myself into other things. This seemed to have worked for me previously, as a young girl but no longer. I was holding myself together with mud and then a hurricane came and washed me away. All that is left now is pieces. I look back at pictures of me just before I began to lose composure. Through forced smiles and perfectly matched outfits, I still know I was at the very least a real person. I was not fragmented like I am now. I was a whole person once. If you look at the pieces you will see - they were once part of a whole. Now I'm aimless trying to find out who I am now and who I used to be.

Remember I said I wanted to share things I write because maybe sharing these things can help someone. Everyone should read She's Come Undone by Wally Lamb. The book is raw and honest in it's portrayal of what repression can do to a person. The themes in the book (spousal abuse, rape, abortion, mental illness, death, love) are all explained in the point of view of someone who feels unloved and incapable of being loved - the abused. The book affirmed conclusions I had already reached on my own. The most important being this: For years I walked around in shame hiding all my dirty secrets, covering up for sins committed against me. It took me a long time to accept that these things are not my fault. These things happen to people. Molestation happens to good people. Rape happens to good people. Physical and mental abuse happens to good people. Neglect happens to good people.

I wonder if I will always at least be partially this way - partially broken. They say once you're an addict you're always an addict, just in recovery. Had I been honest with myself and those who were trying to help from the beginning I wonder where I'd be at right now... But I can't think like that. I can only think of the now and the now is this is me. Flawed and incomplete but on the road to recovery. And if you are walking around harboring dark secrets that keep you shrouded in sadness and shame, let it out. Chose whichever method you are most comfortable with but let it out. Free yourself. Freedom is the only path to true happiness.



your best friend said...

I love my best friend :-) I'm glad you finally read this book and i'm glad it's helped you.

Fresh said...

I feel where ya coming from. My mama would always tell me while going up that "We are our own worst enemy." I never understood exactly what that meant until I got older...and I am still kinda figuring it out. Sometimes we just have to learn how to have faith and keep it keep it moving. Don't dwell on the past.

Torrance Stephens - All-Mi-T said...

repression aint good gotta let it go sister some way so find one ok

(fŭng'kē) [blak] [chik] said...

repression not only wears on you mentally but physically as well...i speak from experience

LeNoir Tyrannical said...

A friend of mine posted this on her facebook. Appearently its circulating the web. also add to the last "White people is being able to name your kids things like Track and Trig and not have them labeled Ghetto names."America is the matrix.

abe said...