Touching My Own Void (final)15th January 2006

I realise I have always longed to be approved of, celebrated and be part of a loving family.  I have clung onto other families deluding myself I belonged, but on major days I was not invited, I had fantasised I belonged.  I have always found the world a painful place, the way I interpreted things in a way, but not everyone meant the things I thought they said and then I am told I am wrong and this just adds to my self loathing and actually it is how I feel. Always being wrong or feeling I am wrong never , never feeling loved, it is crap.

I have also to give up the fantasy about my mother and as my therapist says, it takes courage.  I do not have a mother, I have a woman who gave birth to me, but she does not mother me.  I now have a biological mother and I have been looking for a psychological mother my entire life.  The to will have to be seperate people and I have to stop going back to my mother expecting her to be able to mother me, she cannot and it damages me everytime.  I have to give up the fantasy that my mother can give me what I need if only I am good enough.  How can I be good enough for a woman who does not like themselves that much?  The venim that has come out of my mother’s mouth towards me has almost destroyed me and it is also a constant rejection as I constantly try to get her to love me.  I have now given that up too.  I have not ever been able to see it objectively, now I am learning.  if someone critises me, I am wrong, until now I have not ever been able to grab the concept that is is about them, that is why I have found the world so painful.  It started when I was so young it is not surprising.  I am now learning to find my voice and to be heard, not bollocked for every expression of emotion I had.  I said to my therapist that it feels like I am tumbling out of control, falling into the abyss and we both agreed that the rope had been cut.

However, she also said she thought it had been cut a long time ago, when my mother left when I was three, I have been in the void ever since, I think she is right.  I began to sob and my time was up, I looked at her and she said I have to go, thank goodness I was off to my first group session, it is all so much to take in, I felt like my heart was breaking, but it is a good breaking.  The fact that I had to leave her sesson straight away was really hard, I felt rejected all over again, no hug, no nothing just time up, somehow this was always a problem for me, having to leave and be alone with all that pain did something to me which felt really rejecting.

After I left my therapists I had a little time to pass before I went to my first group session, I sat in the car and gathered myself and drove to the meeting place.  I walked in and felt quite comfortable.  I sat down and one of the other members was there, I had obviously not met any of them before and we started to talk.  It felt odd to me because I was really interested in making polite conversaton i just wanted to be with me for a while.  It was not long before we were called to the room.  A nice light room and I sat by the window at the the far end of the room, it soon became the focal point as I was one of the new ones and they asked me to tell my story.  I was so grateful that there were therapists in the room, this was something I found very hard in recovery group meetings, I needed there to be supervision by a trained counsellor and here I was.

I began to look around the room and feel eternally grateful for what I had, a wonderful son, a car, money to pay the meter, a great home and I felt ready to take this leap.  I realised there and then how far I had come.  I told my story briefly of how I have been sober for 4 years and then started drinking again three years ago, actually it was almost four, and what I had not bargained for ws the shock of the people around the room.  They were scared and told me so.  How can you be 4 years sober and then drink again? I am struggling with each day.  I said that night became day for me and that black became white and a major crisis in my life took me back to the bottle and I have not stopped since……….I also said I am scared myself.

I was not prepared to tell them exactly what  had happened but I said that I thought I could cope with it and I could not.  I also said that I am so grateful that I have decided to get help again.  The meeting went on and we shared our experiences and as others did Ibecame more and more grateful, I have not lost my child, I am not brushing my teeth with vodka and I am not so physically ill that I can barely walk, all because of alcohol.  I am not feelling smug, I am feeling sick, humbled and I realised that this is serious, I want life.

As I left the room and got into my car I felt shell shocked.  I began to drive home and thought of all the times I had gone to recovery meetings all those years ago and how grateful I am to the handful of people who helped me, who stood by me and who really understood me when I did not understand myself, I was so shut down.


I drove along the country road with my music blaring out and thought, go get your future, it is over, the trauma is over, this is your story, your recovery and how you have been blessed, helped and how you have a duty to write the book and help yourself and other people.  The lack of funding for people who have nothing is a disgrace.  I realise this is why beginning to write about the time from 1996 makes so much sense.  I was not aware until then of  anything, and still struggle today but from then it is all retrospective.

I am grateful every day now for all of it.  As I peer through the shaft of light that is round the corner, will slowly get to the other side.  I am learning I let myself down and punished myself just like they did, I choose to learn to love myself as I am being loved and this is very exciting.

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