It feels like forever since I last wrote, although in reality it is only 4 days. Time is passing in weird ways. Parts of me are stuck in trauma time – land of the perpetual present. There are no new words. It’s all been said and it makes no difference. There are possibilities running through my mind for ‘life after K’, but they are too painful and confusing to write about. My journal remains empty, the parts’ book is suspended in time, there is a reluctance to get on with normal life. And yet, in so many ways, that is what I am doing, what I must do. Part of me has already disconnected from K – there is too much shame over needing someone, over the holes in me that I’ve looked to her to fill, over the fact that I can’t even pay to get what I need. And a voice keeps screaming ‘help me!’ And I want to, I think, but I don’t know how. How do I let this part (Leia, she is 14) express her pain when in the face of it her mum went away, even as she begged her to stay?
And it hurts so much knowing that to K I am one of many, so many, when to me she is and always will be one in a million. I am in her heart, we all are, I know that. And it is not enough. She has stayed with me in the darkness, shining her beautiful light, for so long now. She has sat by me and with me in my darkness, holding hope for me when I couldn’t find my own, helping me face the blackness until the stars came into view.
And whilst I would like to think that she has given me enough light to fill the darkness long after she is gone, in truth without her I am scared of being plunged into that darkness forever. Even during the times when I know I will survive, the prospect of a future without her by my side feels pretty bleak. There is a lot of shame around this, but I won’t go there tonight. I thought she would be here for so, so much longer. I thought she would be by my side as I began dating (urgh) and formed new friendships and lost my mind during my daughter’s teenage years. I thought she would be there to witness everything. I thought there would be one person who the parts had told their story to, one person who had heard it all (and I get that this is meant to be me, but their story is a lot for me to take in sometimes). And even though we may work together in the future (she has said that is a possibility), it will never be what it has been. And my system will not need or get from another therapist what we have had from K. We are stronger, we won’t need so much support and love and validation. And this is a sign of progress I know, but it is so much to lose. Some of the emails she has sent to Miffy in particular have made us feel more loved and safe and warm than anything ever has before. It is a huge amount to lose.
Monday’s session was a completely horrific, snot-ridden mess due to things going on in my life aside from the end of the therapeutic relationship, but on Monday next week young parts just need to sit with her and be with her and take in all that we are and have been. They need to be heard and seen and have their pain validated. She said we don’t need to starve ourselves to let her know how much we are hurting, but the young parts feel so lost, and I am scared of their pain, how life and death it feels, how all-encompassing it is. They have no words for what is happening. So I really hope K and I are both strong enough to allow the parts to come out in session and feel what they need to feel, even if it is messy. And I really hope they can begin to find a way to externalise this pain and loss so there is something real to take into the future. I looked at a couple of books – a Debi Gliori one called Always and Forever and one called Rabbityness – which are meant to help children with loss. Foxes and rabbits are really special in K and I’s work, so I may get them, but in so many ways accepting this is happening makes it all feel too real.