All of our moments should be overflowing with thimbleberry thoughts. So in planting these tiny seeds, in due time and in just the right season, the blossoms of revelations, wisdom, and nourishment might likely produce the sweet and lovely fruit for which others may receive their harvest.
Perhaps you are wondering what exactly IS a thimbleberry. Thimbleberry is a beguilingly tart, aromatic fruit that grows wild in northern climates, thriving in areas with cool summer temperatures. The large, velvety berries have a tangy taste reminiscent of currants and raspberries, with soft seeds that release their nutty flavor when chewed.
All of our moments should be overflowing with thimbleberry-like thoughts. So in planting these tiny seeds, in due time and in just the right season, the blossoms of revelations, wisdom, and nourishment might likely produce the sweet and lovely fruit for which others may receive their harvest.
Please feel free to take whichever seeds of thought you like, and scatter them to the wind, because that is precisely where a miracle may in fact, exist.
I now possessed a solid awareness of who I was and of who I was not. Having this simple understanding, I was able to grasp the transparent truth that this “poisoned apple” didn’t belong to me. In fact, it never did.
I Think This
Belongs To You
By Kacie Brockman
Welcome to the other side of fear; this is where the actual fun begins. All those years we’ve spent running so hard and fast have brought us here to this moment. A short distance from the finish line, some of us might be imagining the various rewards that await us, while others might be contemplating whether we even possess the right to finish this race. Consciousnessly or not, each runner is evaluating and determining his worthiness to win. Some of our wounds are still sensitive and raw, while other runners bare only their scars. The roads we have traveled have been treacherous, yet through it all, we’ve somehow become of one spirit, one tribe, and one community. We are the defiant ones that wouldn’t let go of the rope getting dragged for miles. I will not say that we’re stupid, because that is not so. But one must concede that we are some of the most optimistic, eager to forgive, and hard-headed people with the determination to “change him” type of people around. By repeatedly applying variations of our choirlike mantras, “if we could just love them enough.” And so we thought that if we suffered long enough, endured the abuse long enough, maybe they might understand how much we loved them.
And then they might just be able to love us back.
Listen, loving her enough, loving him enough, loving any of them enough isn’t humanly possible; but what IS ENTIRELY possible is spending your entire life attempting to provide them with the joy and life fulfillment that they should have gained through their own experiences rather than yours.
Understandably, we want them to love us; but they won’t because they can’t, at least not in the way that we love. They love the way that we make them feel about themselves. They love the fact that we love them. They LOVE that they can repeatedly hurt us and yet we return to them; reinforcing that of which they crave. They treat us as the bottom of their boots and yet there we are still.
Can you begin to see why they despise us. Why they look down on us? Why the abuse continues? This must be the clear evidence that supports their belief that they are superior to us. It makes me physically ill looking back at what I tolerated, and the precious relationships I continuously relinquished for the sake of wanting him to love me.
This was more than once, more than twice, this was, “GOOD GOD YOU’VE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME!” three times I’d been driven to the edge of sanity. Three different individuals with highly covert Narcissistic traits took me on the scenic route of their own choosing, with each gaslighting, mind-twisting, terror inciting turn I was lost before we even started. So, yeah…political correctness does not get to ride shotgun as these… (Kacie, be nice, be nice, don’t say it…) individuals would much rather be reading my obituary tomorrow morning over breakfast than my blog. They loved no one but themselves. But oh! And their little dogs too. I’ve chosen to privately refer to them as whatever I like, just as they’ve chosen for example to turn and walk away from a critically ill human being that was literally begging only for water, well, because Toto had an appointment with the dog groomer. And upon walking out the door advises said dying person (who only hours later was admitted into the ICU for 5 days) with zero humanity or compassion, “Just call 911 for Christ’s sake!” In my world as well as my blog, abusers don’t receive the privilege of being identified as a card carrying, diagnosed NPD. The generally politically correct psychiatric community can urge the public all they want to develop a compassionate understanding of the narcissist and his “lost” self, but the fact remains, it is not, nor has it ever been an officially recognized diagnosis. I kindly request that research be conducted before admonishing me or any one of the ABUSERS TARGETED VICTIMS.
My view on the meta-physical mechanics of each life’s purpose is that there is an individual lesson of great significance continuously being applied throughout our lives. In my case, the successful understanding and application I might have obtained in the earlier part of my life, I did not. So the learning opportunity was presented again yet formated or structured differently. This process would continue until at some point the student would gain a better understanding of a specific life experience. This understanding is a critical part of the purpose for which we are here in this life. But I digress…basically, the fact is I’ve never been the sharpest crayon in the box, and so the lesson was applied again, and again, and….
It is my intent by hanging all of my dirty laundry out in public, by opening my family’s closet of skeletons, by all of this writing, is that it won’t take you, your loved one or another entire family having to endure years contaminated with tormented loss, confusion and despair. I am praying this awareness be understood and processed in far less time for you.
The tricky part is that an internal shift must take place and a willingness to surrender must occur. A surrender perhaps of life held convictions or embedded belief systems has to happen in order to allow room for an “alternative truth” or “just another possibility” if you will. I encourage, invite, and challenge you to step into the light of the possibility that there may likely be another truth albeit a harsh one. I am hoping that your willingness alone will suffice. That was all it took for me and then I began to wake up from the heavy slumber of a denial system that had overstayed it’s welcome. It wasn’t long for me to feel the freedom of living an authentic life. If your willing, the Universe/God/Source will guide you to your personal truth. The floodgates will be opened as they were for me, and an end to your suffering will surely find its way to you.
It has for me that’s for certain. Once I got it, I mean I GOT it. It was as if the blindfold had been removed and there it was. The truth and I staring at one another with the usual awkwardness of a first meeting. This revelation occurred after I’d inadvertently landed in what I perceived would be a logically sound discussion with someone I admired, trusted, and deeply loved. It did not go as I had planned, and before very long, my heart was shattered. I understood early on that alcohol was a factor, so I attempted to disengage, that one attempt to assert a boundary just spiraled into another lecture from this intoxicated and irrational person. But the conversation continued into the next day, by his initiation. I believed that as it was morning, perhaps we might have a more productive outcome. I was asserting myself for the first time ever and establishing imperative boundaries for my personal preservation and growth. It wasn’t well-received at all.
A covert narcissist is often just too arrogant, lacking the understanding that one needs to gather authentic intelligence or facts to back up their allegations. Narcissists in their grandiose notion of superiority don’t believe they should be questioned and that by their status alone, they should never be required to prove anything. But initial lies can only survive so long, and then there’d better be some real truth to move forward.
Having no real substance to support his argument, he went directly to what has proven successful in the past. In my case, I was not nearly as emotionally healthy as I am today nor was I as educated. So facts to support any false claims, and there were quite a few, well, they just weren’t necessary back then. The only card ever put into play was the one which I consistently provided, the “scapegoat of the family-drunk-addict-pathetic-excuse-for-a-mother-perpetually-unemployed” card was placed face-up on the table and that was that. Game over and so there I’d go crawling right back under my rock with my bottle of vodka.
After later analyzing the conversation, I understood what had just transpired. I gained an immediate awareness about the culprit and the exact nature of what has been at the very core of every relationship, personal or professional and even the relationship I’d had with my children as well as myself for over 49 years.
The specific points of contention were my unwillingness to yield to him and also the fact that I’d made many, valid points that could not be reasonably contested. Within moments of the realization that my boundaries were not to be moved, came a myriad of deflections, projections, thinly veiled insults, blanket statements, and straw man arguments. There were many flying in but could fine no landing zone. I now possessed an acute awareness of who I was and of who I was not. Having this simple understanding, I was able to grasp the transparent truth that this “poisoned apple” didn’t belong to me. It never did. I have repeatedly acknowledged ownership of my wrong doings, and have taken the difficult but necessary actions to correct or repair the damages that I alone created. But this poisoned apple? Perhaps it was the alcohol that exposed his betrayal. . Regardless, a shallow attempt to conceal his contempt for me had been noted. His affect was bitter and his words saturated with hostility. As the lies began to take center stage, the accusations began. What I think hurt the most was the fact that I’d been completely duped once again into believing someone loved me. As the lies took center stage, the carefully crafted but equally as cruel criticisms made their poorly costumed entrance. Accusations were lodged that I was making accusations, and from thereon the entire performance was a comedy of errors as the improvisation of the truth began and the curtain closed with applause as several texts not intended for me, but clearly about me, were then mistakenly sent to me. This was the day I recognized “the poisoned apple” for exactly what it was. And so I refused to take it because it simply wasn’t mine to carry. This belonged to him and him alone. So there I left it, every single bit of it.
ALL OF THIS – this that you’re seeking, the knowledge and understanding of the various traits/tactics/inner workings of the narcissistic mind; Investigating every website that refers to NPD, gaslighting, exposing the narcissist; ALL OF THIS – this that you’re doing, all the fighting back against the blatant lies and the absurd injustice, the hours of documentation, and the therapist appointments; scrambling your brain in a desperate, yet futile attempt to make others understand what you’ve been through;
ALL OF THIS – this that you’re hoping for, holding tightly to the notion that by understanding the narcissist, their wounds, how to communicate with them they’ll magically wake up to how much you love them; fantasizing what it will look like on that glorious day that you and your child will be vindicated and the truth will be set free;
So even all of this does not hold the answer for which you so desperately seek. It is, however, leading you, guiding you and gently nudging you to awaken to the one true answer.
Aren’t you tired of repeating the same lesson? I will attempt to explain what happened for me, where my answer came from and what specifically the answer was. Let me first say, that initially I did not like it one bit. But then I realized that if this were indeed the answer, then a large portion of my current heartache and the likelihood of future suffering might actually be eliminated.
The answer I discovered was that all the years of misery and suffering was not necessarily caused by the abuse and cruelty of the narcissist. In fact, the lesson has never been about them at all really. It is and always has been about one person,
I told you you wouldn’t like it. Because surely after the sheer hell they’ve put us through, having tormented us and possibly our children for years, stripping away our dignity, self-worth, and oftentimes our sanity, by God this belongs to them! Not us! Right?
The Mirror, remember?
They were showing us what we just couldn’t see, or refused to see.
They were simply treating us precisely as we agreed they should, and continued to mirror the value we’d placed upon ourselves long before they even came onto the scene.
Because every time we tolerated one minute more of the abuse? We became their cosigner. Every time we accepted one hour more of their behavior? We agreed with them. Every day of compliance with an assigned role of being a scapegoat, or the receptacle for everyone’s secrets, shame and lies? We acquiesced and gave them our blessing.
We subscribed to every issue.
We cosigned every deal.
Every time we engaged in irrational and illogical arguments that could go around and around for hours?
*God…Please let these words, my words, this explanation touch someone who so needs to understand this right now. Please pour your light and understanding onto this one gravely critical fact…*
The times they succeeded in driving us to our knees as they threatened to kill themselves? When they held the barrel of a loaded shotgun in their mouth? When they grabbed a 7 month old infant from his sister and held a hunting knife to his throat? By God we conceded to every one of these horrors by choosing to wake up the next morning in that same monster’s bed.
We permitted it by staying. We allowed it to continue by keeping it secret. Please make no mistake…
By our silence, we shook hands with their insanity.
Now we need to answer the question, “Why?”
Why did we stay?
Because we loved them? Are you kidding me? Who loves this type of creature? At the core of this exam, that will not suffice as the answer.
We BELIEVED the abuse was measured out in direct proportion to our worth.
We BELIEVED that we weren’t valuable enough to protect ourselves.
Read that again.
WE BELIEVED WE WERE NOT VALUABLE ENOUGH TO PROTECT, DEFEND, OR PUT AN END TO THE ABUSE.
Allow this to marinate.
Your value is defined by what you allow.
Your value is set by you.
As the lightest twinkling of an awakening begins, I say to you,
This is the space where healing can finally begin.
You are not alone. And you are so fucking worthy.
#Maybehedoesnthityou but he won’t let you go home or see your friends very often or at all.— Akilah Hughes (@AkilahObviously
#maybehedoesnthityou but he tries to control who you talk to, where you go, what friends you can have, and acts like it’s out of love.— sailor mourn ⚰ (@detricotage) May 9, 2016
#maybehedoesnthityou but he constantly criticizes your clothes, your makeup, your body, instructs you to work out and be more ‘feminine.’— Laurie Penny (@PennyRed) May 11, 2016
#MaybeHeDoesntHitYoubut he makes sure you believe that you’re too broken/damaged to ever be wanted by anyone else— Just Juanita (@Just_Juanita May 9, 2016
#maybehedoesnthityou but he cheats left and right, and makes it feel like it’s you’re fault that he did it and that you can’t leave— lauren (@l0ve_lauren) May 11, 2016
#Maybehedoesnthityou but he’d convince you to hate your parents & friends and to push them away completely because they didn’t like him.— Queen Bitch (@MacaelaRipley) May 11, 2016
#maybehedoesnthityou but he rips your infant/toddler/small child from your arms and threatens you that you will never see your baby again. #maybehedoesnthityou but maybe he threatens you that he’ll convince the court that your unstable and bipolar so you will never have you child. #maybehedoesnthityou but has forced sodomized sex against your will with small child in bed at the same time #maybehedoesnthityou but he follows through on every single threat he’d made during the marriage! #maybehedoesnthityou but convinces everyone that none of this happened and your just a jealous or bitter lying albatross – February 16, 2020 -Kacie Brockman
#maybehedoesnthityou but he tells you he’ll kill himself if you break up with him.— Jenny Jaffe
#maybehedoesnthityou but he never lets you forget that he could leave you for someone prettier, less “slutty,” less emotional, less damaged.— Ella Dawson (@brosandprose) May 9, 2016
#maybehedoesnthityou and he treats you like property and not a person— Keegan Kenzie (@Keegannnnn)May 9, 2016
#maybehedoesnthityou but he says you should be grateful he doesn’t— audrey honeydrone (@singing_ghosts)May 9, 2016
I deserved better, not only from them, but also from myself. What they ceased to recognize is that I was no longer the timid, people pleasing, always agreeable doormat that they’d all come to know and love. I had discovered my voice, yet they preferred I had just continued drinking the vodka.
Thou Shalt Not Set Boundaries
“It’s too easy to criticize a man when he’s out of favour, and to make him shoulder the blame for everybody else’s mistakes.” – Leo Tolstoy
Sadly, my family required that I continue to live up to their highest expectations as a pathetic, unemployed alcoholic doormat. Believe it or not, being an employed alcoholic garners you a higher position in the family. Being an unemployed alcoholic garners you isolation, abandonment and the darkest nights of your soul.
If only I hadn’t have told prospective employers that I had a felony, a kid, no car and I couldn’t work around alcohol. Maybe then my family wouldn’t have thrown me and my little boy away.
I have come to a place in my life that certain types of communications have become intolerable. Once they were accepted because frankly I didn’t know any better. But today I do. In fact, I know that boundaries were quite in opposition to my mother’s narcissistic agenda our entire lives.
I deserved better, not only from them, but also from myself. What they ceased to recognize is that I was no longer the timid, people pleasing, always agreeable doormat that they’d all come to know and love. I had discovered my voice, yet they preferred I had just continued drinking the vodka. My youngest daughter- I just realized is The YOUNGEST ACTUAL ADULT in our family and even she has a far better understanding about all of this than the two senior members still attempting to dominate what is rest of our family through deception and threats which are not always so carefully veiled.
I’m quite confident that with this “seriously poor attitude” of mine, any opportunity for growth to climb up the ladder in this family is pretty much nonexistent. I caught a glimpse of what’s up there, beyond the top of that ladder, and from what I can tell, I’ve got much higher property values right where I stand.
They told me to go get well. -so I spent well over a year “getting well.” In reality I’ll most likely be addressing recovery in one way or another for the rest of my life.
Perhaps they might like to catch up. – but it’s an awful lot of work and a serious time investment of which so far none are willing to take on. There’s that hostile and aggressive attitude of mine again. But after hearing mean and nasty remarks made about you to you via a misdialed text it’s beyond painful.
“I found peace of mind when I walked away from small fights not worth fighting. I stopped fighting for people who gossiped about me. I stopped fighting for those who didn’t respect me. I quit worrying about those who wouldn’t value me for being me.” ~Dana Acuri
I am still surprised in regards to just how strong a denial system can actually be. And even though I’d broken through a large portion of mine, I truly believed that they were the healthy ones! I’m just so grateful that I possessed the ability to recognize how very sick I had actually become, and be willing to change it.
I was recently informed that by calmly defining clear and definite boundaries which included refusing to tolerate or engage in any future discussions that I identify as belittling or being strategic in nature or appear as a manipulated set up- that I was being insulting, rude and aggressive. And then three times accused of drinking.
They “Hope I’m working my program…”
Establishing boundaries…standing up for myself as an intelligent being, oh…and basically with a conscious decision to remove myself from emotion-so that for once I’d be taken seriously….I simply said,
“NO MORE.” These same words I’d said 6 years ago to my abuser, have brought about similar consequences. A disapproval masked by an immediate delivery of a defensive and dominating deflection. (I swear that tongue twister was not planned out. I couldn’t have made that work if I’d tried!)
Simply an attempt to establish boundaries accompanied by an explanation that the bar had been raised and the level of respect which I had previously accepted would no longer be. If, for example, I’d not asked for financial help in the last year, then for what reason should I be expected to explain why I didn’t currently have a phone line? With care, I constructed my words so as to ensure that the full expression of love would be understood for the basis of this conversation both for myself and for him. I explained that I needed to protect my fragile self-esteem and sobriety. Yet every one of my explanations and attempts to communicate any of my feelings were received and interpreted only as a defiant attack upon he and the family. (I’m assuming he’d been referring to the family, as he kept referencing “We” & “Us” throughout the discussion when I clearly informed him that I was addressing him alone in regards to the way the night prior he’d been quite demeaning to me while intoxicated.
“Stop looking for a scapegoat in your life but be willing to face the truth within yourself & right your own wrongs” ~ Eileen Caddy.
That Bus I was thrown under? Not sure why it was necessary to switch gears into reverse and then right back into Drive again. My mission to spread public awareness about Covert Narcissistic Abuse is founded on a solid foundation and my resolve has not wavered. Every single relationship that is lost due to character assassination or smear campaign just proves to me exactly why I CANNOT back down, and be assured, I will not back down. Your threats of relationships with my children possibly being severed, no longer carry weight or substance. I WILL NOT BE MOVED. Nor will I be intimidated by your illusory reality ever again. This purpose is not even my own any longer. This is God’s show…HE IS THE DIRECTOR- HE IS IN CHARGE- AND I AM ONLY ABLE TO FACE GIANTS BECAUSE OF MY ABSOLUTE FAITH, TRUST and RELIANCE UPON HIM.
Ample opportunity was for provided for both to stop the charade. I just wanted healing, honesty and a willingness to engage in an open dialogue with one another absent any deception that was occurring, one of whom even finally offered an unapologetic, “I’m bored, and I sit here alone all day. What do you expect? Don’t talk to me about anything then.” Every pure and true act of love that I’ve extended and every truth I have begged for was coldly ignored or straight up rejected.
I live in silence no more. As three separate therapists tried for 5 years to guide me into a truth I couldn’t bear to accept.
There was a REASON WHY I chose HIM.
We seek out what is Familiar – We seek out what looks like family. “HE” was much worse, so much worse-no one believed me then, either. It’s excruciating when people believe the perpetrators over the victims. SO WHY EXACTLY DON’T PEOPLE BELIEVE US?
Today, We are a nearly 12,000 strong community of Gaslight Survivors that as a collective voice refuse to be intimidated by the relentless incoming cannons you shoot at US! The innocent ones, the ones YOU abused, the ones YOU manipulated for decades, and yet when you’re perfect “image” is put up on the block, the complete absence of any conscious, integrity or soul becomes nauseatingly transparent.
The attacks have begun…All the “mentally unstable” or the tired and worn out “substance abuse” “jealousy over So & so “ and/or the… “She’s just bitter….””…can’t stand to see me happy” artillery has been launched.
I am the kindest freaking human being in the world! So seriously? I forgive again and again and again. I’ve never once claimed to be perfect, but I did not deserve this in my childhood, my second marriage, and certainly not now. Not one of these people, with all their money, real estate, 401Ks or material possessions could pass a polygraph. What abuser can? I’ll tell you who could though…this “white trash, unemployed, AA card carrying, X-felon and cookie baking, garden growing, simpleton grandma, that’s who!
All the toxicity, a completely fabricated history, MY HISTORY, which until I implemented “NO CONTACT” would still be force fed to me. If I posed too much opposition to the “spun story” then it would be fed to someone else with a naive or trusting nature. Hell, the story would be recited to anyone at all who’d listen, and all the while a deliberate undermining was taking quietly erodying what was left of my life, my relationships and my reality. The only way to survive was to walk away. The last conversation brought me back to the sheer insanity of trying to maintain a clear and logical conversation with someone who is deliberately trying to create confusion with a nonexistent scenario within the conversation. It’s an impossible conversation which always ends up with you being projected as the antagonist.
The conversation being referred was a flighty attempt out of what I imagine could only be sheer desperation and intoxication, to create “a something out of nothing” spun story….Ironically coming only a few hours after I’d effectively maintained an articulate, logical and nonaggressive discussion, in which I had for the very first time in my life set rightful boundaries. After an unsuccessful attempt to violate said boundaries, came the bitter sting of a completely unsuspected betrayal. Receiving texts clearly not intended for me, I had now become the complete antagonist in the conversation earlier that day. How had I become “The Bad Guy?”
The Flipping of the Script
By seeing through the bullshit basically. I had addressed the deflection, inference and the subtle but steady undercurrent of disparaging and dismissive comments intended basically just to trip me up. So now the script had been rewritten. *Flipping the script. Now the story was, “I’d probably been drinking, was aggressive, rude and insulting, and blowing his phone up all day while he was at work and wanted to just be left alone” Well okay then, I just hope someone has a fire extinguisher nearby when his pants combust into flames.
“It’s too easy to criticize a man when he’s out of favour, and to make him shoulder the blame for everybody else’s mistakes.” ~ Leo Tolstoy, War and Peace
“ I don’t know what she is trying to do. They are insulting , rude, aggressive. I told her last night I doubted she is sober. She is going on and on. So tired of it.”
So the feigned concern has been noted and documented. Both may now drop their “Go-To Plan” as the “We’re just so concerned about her, her mental health or I think she’s drinking again…or, or something.” act has worn out it’s originality and audience appeal.
Mr. ABCDEFGHIJKLMNO…the night before was attempting to convince me that he was not significantly impaired by texting almost the entire alphabet to me. As one might gather from the ridiculousness of this, yes he’s had multiple dui’s. Perhaps he reckoned that I might just not notice the previous nonsense he’d already texted…the alphabet….smdh. I would never in my wildest imagination believed that I would not provide this person with cover for his past mistakes. I’ve always kept a shield of silence for both of them until now. I can only survive so many injuries from their lack of compassion, communication and covert manipulation. Walking away is evidently the only choice they’ve left me.
This is their “go-to” or method of operation when someone finds them out. Well the recent attempts to undermine my credibility were so poorly executed by that sadly intoxicated family member whom I previously would have laid down my life for.
The proof is in black-and-white – the conversation’s transcript as well as clear attempts to divert me from staying on point throughout the conversation. – The mind games that I was now so familiar with were unsuccessful so then when his attempts to flip the script failed miserably, he came back dangling the proverbial carrot which I’ve been chasing all of my life.
This encounter perfectly exposes an assortment of textbook narcissistic tactics and it will be in detail and publicly posted only because of the following:
I’m done sheltering evil with my naïveté and my silence. Love? They’d rather see me in jail or dead than for me to break my silence.
Anyways…What’s Love Got to do with Any of it? I’ve only enough love left to spare for the pure and honest hearts left in this world.
They’ve attached to me over the years, their wickedly sharp barbs of Guilt, Secrecy and Shame which I carry NO responsibility for, thus I have laid all of it down at their feet. It was never mine to carry. Not then, not now, not ever.
“Every group feels strong once it has found a scapegoat.” ~Mignon McLaughlin
This is THEIR secret, NOT MINE.
although it continues to pain me deeply… I did not start the fire.
It was already burning before I even took my first breath.
His irrational and unpredictable rages which initially brought me to my knees subsequently became my morning cup of coffee. My new normal if you will.
The Letter And The Lighthouse
By Kacie Brockman
Roughly 5 years ago I came to be captivated by lighthouses. There was nothing in my youth or past experiences that would explain my fascination with them. I began thinking about their absolute magnificence and significance. I also became highly aware of each time I would see one and how it eerily connected to some type of experience I was having at the time.
On occasion, I’m able to create a deep well of thought or emotion around what typically for others is a very simple concept which is what I did with lighthouses. I began to visualize how many ships, how many sailors, captains or crewmen were petrified, frozen in fear during the darkness of night and trying to do everything they could just to survive as the violent waves of a ferocious storm relentlessly tossed their ship about. Perhaps it was during those panic-stricken moments when they thought all hope was lost, that they saw a light. They saw the light from the lighthouse, which would ultimately guide them safely back to shore.
In 2013 I desperately began searching for rescue. I didn’t know what to do as my ship was being tossed about in a violent and abusive relationship. His irrational and unpredictable rages which initially brought me to my knees subsequently became my morning cup of coffee. My new normal if you will.
Interesting that I should still be able to recall that, as it was over 6 years ago and according to many a story I’d simply invented. Periodically I still recoil at the fact that I was told, “We never saw anything that would indicate that you were ever abused.” His perpetual insistence that “No one would believe you anyway,” was right on point because he was always right. I can still hear the echoes of his voice asking me, “Dontcha think?” He repeated this personalized mantra again and again until it became embedded in my psyche not only for the next 5 years, but even now. Because according to him, I just never did…think.
Back to the lighthouse. I would notice it in various elements of my life and then provide it with a meaning or relevance to parallel experiences. Thus last night’s realization having pierced me so deeply, I again remembered the lighthouse and it’s invariant association.
In 2014, I believed my family was my without question, my lighthouse. I certainly assumed, if I got up out of that house and really left him for good that I would have their love and support. I imagined that once they knew the entire truth, that I would be safe. Sadly, imaginations are precisely that, imaginations.
For various reasons, of which I can only speculate, the tables were turned against me at every crossroad. I somehow came to be at fault for everything. I was at fault for taking him back to the home. I was at fault for leaving him. I was at fault for not planning it out the exit out of the marriage better. I experienced a car accident and was clean and sober at the time. I was not at fault according to CHP or 3 Witnesses. Nevertheless, when I arrived back home, I was indeed found to be at fault. I was at fault for not putting the washer lid down, the shower curtain back the way it was supposed to be, or for not closing the garage door. I was at fault for stuttering and being confused and lost and afraid. Though I had intermittently used drugs for a time right before the separation and right after, which I had independently come forward and confessed, that became the sole focus for nearly everyone. For some, the fact that I acknowledged my role in the ensuing chaos made all the difference. For others, the false accusations and storylines ensued and grew more elaborate by the hour. E-mails I still have provided such a distortion of events and theories kindled and brought ablaze to profoundly illusory statements. I suspect the reason for which was deep hostility harbored by both mother and my older sibling. Those grievances were indeed justified, as I had certainly brought with me enormous discontent and chaos into their already troubled lives. Yet the manner in which these resentments were expressed was vindictive and vengeful. Ultimately the culmination of everyone’s dysfunctional attempts to rationalize or repair resulted in a hellish nightmare from which not a single one of us could escape.
I made a difficult discovery last night. As I was going through some of my belongings boxed away in my garage I found a letter unopened. A letter I had written to my family at a critical point of our family’s ultimate collapse. I had hand-delivered it to my mother. It had never been opened. It had never been read. It might have changed the course of everything had any one of my family been privy to that communication. Regardless, she held onto it only to be found after 6 more years of suffering endured by all. I imagine she must have felt reassured in knowing that no one would ever read those words.
The letter contains the desperate words of a woman left with very few options. Each sentence a plea begging for someone to save her child. Every word was mine. And each one breathed my soul as I petitioned and implored my family for help.
By design or by default, these words will, in fact, be given attention to. They will be read. They will be known. If not by her, then by God, by everyone else. Too many instances she has been given, to do the right thing. Too many times she chose not to. My love is no longer a harbor for her sins. My silence no longer provides a refuge for her secrets.
The truth comes out in the end people. Whether you like it or not. Mine sure did. Most truths I came clean with independently, others, I got my hand caught in the proverbial cookie jar. And when it did, my mother was sure to tell everyone, every time. So in effect, perhaps the nut doesn’t fall far from the tree.
However hard you try to hide it… the truth always comes out. I guarantee you, it is best to not lie. If you have lied or have been deceptive in an area of your life, come clean before it’s too late. And if you’re looking for a sign?
This is it.
By choosing to remain trapped in a lie, you just might want to be prepared to get caught and face consequences much steeper than had you provided the truth. And trust me, time always, ALWAYS delivers the truth.
With the blink of an eye, they will put you in the ground. They will weep at your funeral to intercept any compassion and empathy for themselves. To describe the level of sheer disconnection the narcissist is able to achieve, allow me to provide an example. When I returned from a 72-hour hold in February 2014, just a week before I wrote this letter, my mother said to me, “I hope you enjoyed your nice little vacation.” Three weeks later I was arrested for attempted murder with a blood alcohol content of .397, a nearly fatal absorption level for which I was initially hospitalized. Roughly one week after my arrest she hosted a slumber party in her home and posted it on social media.
At this time an impossibility remains for me not to speculate on how circumstances might have been different if someone, if anyone had simply opened…
Life is our playground and our sandbox. So it’s about time I started playing and creating. How can you be afraid to play? How can you be afraid to create? Only if you’re waiting on somebody else’s opinion of how you play or what you decide to create do you actually accomplish, well, …nothing. Not a damn thing. For 49 years I’ve been waiting on someone else’s approval, pat on the back, good job, agreement, gold star etc. Not anymore. It’s no longer, “One day I’ll start that blog…One day I’ll write that book…” No. Today, this day, is day one. No more dreaming, no more wishing, no more talking. It’s Game Time.
I thought I could do this chronologically but that’s not going to happen. So then I thought my blog? My book? Well then, my rules. And here are the rules:
There are no more damn rules.
I followed them my whole life until life stopped me dead in my tracks and the very earth’s foundation began shifting like sand in an hourglass. Cognitive Dissonance became a very real construct in my scrambled world. My entire belief system was shaken (not stirred) to the core of my being.
Following the rules keeps you safe. I promise it does. But do you feel joy, contentment, fulfillment? Does following the rules make you happy? That cookie cutter mold (Social Image) that you have spent your entire life creating, conforming, enhancing, or forcing yourself to be, is it really you? Do you even know?
When I say rules, I don’t mean the necessary law abiding rules of a civilized society, I mean the “rules”-the unspoken ones, the ones that if you don’t follow you are frowned upon, or not invited to someone’s wedding, or talked about behind your back, or excluded from a circle of friends perhaps.
I’m over it. I was recently told that I lacked a filter. I was honest about my feelings by simply allowing a physical response to an emotion of sorrow move up, out and away from me. Teardrops. I was very hurt and had yet to process the new and uncomfortable, no, downright painful information I had just been given. And right away I was perceived as being difficult, or not having the reaction or response that I should have had, and that there was just something different about me and something wrong about me. I didn’t used to lack a filter. I had tact and a courteous manner and I could fake a handshake and a gentle smile, but when you’re backed into a corner and you’ve jumped through all the hoops and you played all the games and you’ve danced all the dances, knowing all the choreography by heart, because at the deepest level of my being, EVERYTHING I did, everything I said, the friends that I surrounded myself with, EVERYTHING was to ensure at all cost never having to experience the following: judgment, abandonment, ostracization, exclusion, isolation-and rejection. Yet every single one of my deepest terrors still occurred. I manifested every single one. Everything I feared, everything I navigated my entire life so carefully around so that would never happen to me, well, it still happened.
So now what? Do I dance the dance again? Do I jump through hoops again? Do I fold my napkin properly across my lap? Do I tell you everything‘s fine when it’s not? Do I talk about the beautiful weather we’re having? Do we sweep all those nasty little dust bunnies of life’s experiences right under the carpet again?
Or…Can I be real finally?
I am unladylike. I am honest. I stay up too late and I sleep in too late. I haven’t shaved my legs in weeks…and it’s summer. I don’t always think things through. I don’t fill my gas tank until the red light has been on for a few days and I don’t pay my utility bills until the 48 hour notice. I pick up hitchhikers every once in a while and we talk about Jesus, the cosmos and the best taco truck in town. I drink out of the milk carton. The other day I flipped off a driver that passed dangerously on my right while I had my child in the car… and started using curse words my child’s never heard me use. He was impressed.
I am beginning to feel emotions that I have not felt since the age of 13.
At which age I learned to adapt and endure multiple traumas by inducing a numbed perception through self injury and subsequently alcoholism and drug addiction.
The first thing you get to experience in recovery is emotions. Feelings. For some that may seem a very simple concept but when you have existed for close to four decades dodging, swerving and leaping over them, it’s quite a challenging and difficult experience to acclimate yourself to.
Yet, Today I wear them openly. I cry too much, I laugh too loud, I wear clothes that don’t match, I’m too loud, I’m too lazy, I’m a whole lotta “too much” everything.
And you know why I think that is, because I did follow all the rules all the time all my life. And something shifted and the transition began about five years ago.
When you’re arrested for attempted murder… Life takes on a whole new meaning.
When the whole community really doesn’t know when, why, how, who, or where, well then they fill in the blanks themselves. And the story takes on a life of its own that isn’t remotely possible to break apart, even with the truth.
So I stepped back and I accepted that people believe what they want to believe. It’s much easier to construct, believe, pass along information however erroneous and untruthful, it’s much easier for people to swallow than the ugly monster called the truth.
So,I will never again take another breath for another human being to decide whether I was worthy enough to breathe.
I lack a filter, because I expressed an authentic human response to news that my new normal life that I had finally just adjusted to, was now being thrown up in the air and juggled around and landing in places I never expected. My heart and my mind, my sense of security, my sense of familial relationships, all of it felt like it was just thrown out the window and anything short of immediate readjustment, reacclimation, acceptance and overwhelming joy was unwelcome. Well it didn’t happen that way and so once again I was different from everyone else. I was (perceived/or real) the cold, unsupportive, selfish disfunctional / toxic black sheep of the family.
Humans feel. Humans hurt. Humans make mistakes…often. I am one of the messy humans so quadruple all of that.
I can’t be neat and tidy and proper anymore. Nope. I cannot live in such a fashion to make me suitable to invite to tea parties or luncheons or to meet your new fiancé. I am inappropriate and coarse. My clothes are wrinkled and your feathers will likely be ruffled.
White Trash? No. Low Class? Not even close. It’s called, walking barefoot through the soft, green meadows and shards of broken glass that together create this experience called life.
True compassion, understanding, and humanity that can only come from experiencing it all.
One More Thing:
I say “Fuck” a lot more these days…and not in a whisper.
Two years ago today my life changed in a way I never imagined. I had to hit bottom in a devastating turn of events that completely shattered my life along with those around me. Today I give thanks to my Creator for knowing what was best. I give thanks to the police officers, hospital staff and the correctional officers who had a job to do and did it well. I thank The Fellowship – Narcotics Anonymous and Valley Sober Living. I thank the Judge for placing a bail high enough to save my life. I thank my family, friends and those who stuck by me when by all rights could have walked away. I had such a hard lesson to learn. Today I am clean and sober by a miracle. Many people were placed in the right place at the right time. By God’s Mercy and Grace I am alive. I am sober. And I am loved. Gratitude abounds and I wish there were enough words to express how I feel in this very moment after just learning that one of us did not make it out alive. Today I have my precious children,my grandchildren, dear friends too numerous to count and my sobriety. Again, and again I give thanks.
And yet, just one year later, I would plummet from the warmth of that wagon straight into the ICU.
But there it was, the complexity of their lies ultimately pummeling the simplicity of my truth. That is when I knew for certain that Karma had arrived perfectly on time. It was the worst possible time for my years of truth mismanagement to come due.
Balloon Theory Explained
Initially upon my acceptance back into the family, in a clear maneuver to evade culpability for her own atrocious behaviors, she stated, “EVERYTHING IN THE PAST WILL BE LEFT IN THE PAST. AGREED?” And then only days later she presented me with one of her bag-o-tricks – that I provide full disclosure about absolutely everything, or risk losing certain relationships which for me held such innate value, purpose and meaning. As was customary for my supporting role in her productions, I complied and cooperated. It wasn’t an interrogation on the spot but rather a well-thought-out plan to extract as much guilt, humiliation and shame humanly possible for as long as possible. This steady and reliable supply would keep her demons fed, for a while anyways.
So when you’ve had a spiritual and moral ass kicking, and you come through to the other side where you embrace the light of the sun rather than seek safety in the shadows, you develop an intolerance to every nature of deception. From false pretenses to hypocrisy to every day, run of the mill back-biting, because to experience it’s suffocating heaviness is unbearable. You come to a place of reverence and a desire to protect the truth.
So when I’ve said lying is so much easier, No, I retract that. It was perhaps easier for the ever so fleeting moment, but when that bill came due, it was game over. I was destroyed physically, mentally and spiritually. It was truly my own personal Armageddon. There would never again be flirtations with falsehood nor any dances with dishonesty. I’d been pummeled by the very same absence of integrity and dishonesty that I’d become complacently removed from up until that day.
You might be just like I was. You might feign innocence and think it’s not a big deal, but hey, that’s your karmic loan that your securing. And yet I know that there are people that don’t deceive others because I’ve met them, a lot of them. They don’t do it for attention, they don’t do it for personal gain, they just don’t do it period. I also know this because I know what I did then and I know what I do now. Big difference. I chosen to live a life of goodness and truth just as my father did. When I leave this earth all I hope for is that any memory of my existence be of laughter, goodness, or truth.
This is the truth about my lies. They worked really well for a while. Until my father died. That is when the world stood still, the ground beneath my feet faltered….and I was heading for the moment of God’s truth and no longer mine. If you’re one of the good eggs, thank you. Because I believe in the ripple effect and I believe that we could all make this place so much better if we start caring about others more than we cared about ourselves. But if for whatever reason honesty and truth tend to fall on the back burner more often than not, just a warning from personal experience-be prepared for the inherent nature of Karma’s severity and unpredictability. Because the bill will come and when it does, the interest due will be in direct proportion to ANY suffering that was endured because of your deception.
Tell ya what…I’ll make this easy for you. I know precisely what the balloon 🎈 payment consists of, so listen up because you do NOT want to go into this blind. Let’s just say, it is no less than a customized karmic nuclear holocaust that could deliver a beating with such severity, you’ll never again want to look at that deck of cards of deception let alone play with them. Yeah, it’s kinda like that.
Five and a half years ago an insidious and systematic manipulation of the truth came within inches of utterly annihilating me. It was a mob attack of lies and slander I couldn’t even conceive of. But there it was, the complexity of their lies ultimately pummeled the simplicity of my truth. That is when I knew for certain that Karma had arrived perfectly on time. It was the worst possible time for my years of truth mismanagement to come due. And my God, the balloon payment required was nothing less than my own precious child.
I’ve recently discovered several of my writings from 1-2 years ago, when I was told to quit posting my thoughts publicly because I was just humiliating my family with anecdotal BS or slam poetry fueled by alcohol.
I’ve been reviewing many of these “locked 🔒 posts” and today with a steady and sober mind, I am tilting my head a bit, wondering if in fact it was simply the truth that was “humiliating my family”, because as I’ve been reading my own words from 2 years ago, what I see are cohesive thoughts with articulate and clear expression pouring out like ignited gasoline onto the screen. Was it a tactic to once again squeeze shame or embarrassment from my moment of courage to speak?
I believe so.
So I have decided to go ahead and share them – and to let the readers decide for themselves. If these are seen as drunken dialogs of nonsense, then I will catalog them as such. But with clarity of mind and heart, I just don’t see it.
Following are three of the “Tipsy Truths” that I was coerced to remove from a social media account because I was informed that it was “painfully obvious” that I was intoxicated at the time of writing them. I was not, but I was also not strong enough to fight any more battles. The characters assassination had already taken hold and truthfully, the way I was carrying on certainly didn’t help my case. It takes incredible resolve to mend a splintered spirit. I was simply too tired and too lost to fight anyone about anything, anymore. The Bells Palsy and subsequent job loss had done a number on me.
Basically, I got drunk too many times for too many reasons, none of which held any validity. And when you do that, I was not aware that then you need it. And I mean you need it like you need water, like you need food, like you need oxygen. Your body demands that you supply it with alcohol and that was a lonely and horrifying world to enter.
But back to topic, I know the difference between being tipsy and swimming under current in the abyss-two distinctly different realities.
Allow me if you will to step up to the plate and open my closet of skeletons. In fact I hope that as each one comes out it might do a two step stomp and be set free.
I ran. I was always running from pain, confusion emptiness or any emotion I basically didn’t have the skill set to navigate. And there were so damn many. So if it had a lot of calories, I’d eat the sadness away. If it could break through skin then I’d bleed the anger away. Or with lighters burn until large fluid filled blisters would form and I’d squeeze that bubbling rage until it left trails of moisture down my arm. If I could get a buzz, I’d drink the awkwardness away. If it had nicotine, I’d smoke the anxiety and guilt deep into my lungs with 20 cigarettes a day. If I could get high on meth, I’d be busybusybusybusy so the shame and humiliation simply couldn’t catch up to me. I was always afraid. Always alone. Always wanting out of this life.
I found comfort quite inadvertently at 12 years old with the sharpness of an old key repeatedly running back and forth on my arm. I still have that scar and for God knows why, in a sick way I’m actually proud of that one. But by my late 30’s my diversion technique (what I called it) had up and abandoned me. Good old self injury could no longer offer me solace from all of the gaslighting, family turmoil, or from an increasingly disorienting relationship with my mother.
The emptiness was insatiable for years. I could eat an obscene amount of food and not even have it digested before I’d begin again. I’d gain over 100 pounds and then lose 80, gain 60 pounds, lose 40, it was a never ending war I’d wage upon myself every minute of every day for over 20 years.
My daughters became my best friends and allies against such a wickedly sadistic world. We’d lie in bed and listen to Evanescence and Him (Music) and I’d cry and they’d try to console me. Then they’d be brought to tears and I’d try to console them. It was very unhealthy and damaging I’m sure. I have regret. I have too much regret for one lifetime alone, I assure you.
There were far too many times I chose to comfort myself with a bottle of booze than to look at the hard stuff. Like the agonizing fact that my mother was never capable of loving me. The numerous times she would find fault with me or hang her arms limp beside her as I hugged her, or the stare. That stare that I think only someone who’s experienced it can understand. It is still beyond my ability to describe. Or the fact that the majority of my family would rather find fault with me than to look inward. Or that my entire reality was a pathetic version of The Truman Show. The examples are infinite… I could write for the rest of my life, I’d never be able to list everything. But the truth is, regardless of everything, every-single-thing, I CHOSE to drink. I chose until eventually I had no choice.
In 2013 when HIS mask completely disintegrated, well that demanded an entirely new regimen of snorting burning white lines of hellfire which with incredible efficiency created a season of unimaginable suffering. Between the monster I married, my mother and the methamphetamine, I’d begun to serve three vile masters just to experience the always temporary illusion of well being. The consequences were brutal and merciless. All three masters were never satisfied so there was always a steep price to pay.
I should have gone to the safe house. I believe this one solitary decision would have changed the course of everything. I chose not to go because I was still addicted…to “Him.” I should have complied and cooperated with the people that actually did want to help me. Instead I would end up running back to those that didn’t.
I should have never taken the law into my own hands. I know that for certain. I believe God/Our Creator/The Universe in all its divine wisdom has a perfect plan of checks and balances and by my interference precious time and evidence was lost that could have ultimately changed the outcome.
In 2017 after close to three years of sobriety and abstinence from all drugs, I suffered a severe Bells Palsy attack which put me out of work for some time, and then a bizarre cold virus that was not from this planet chose to inhabit deep within my inner ear which then perforated my eardrum subsequently causing hearing loss and tinnitus.
The tinnitus and behavioral health care tango will be another blog entry altogether. That was an entirely new level of Batshit Crazy Psychiatry at it’s finest that you won’t want to miss.
So by the end of 2017 after losing my job, losing my semester of grants and a scholarship, and having residual facial disfiguration from the Bells Palsy, I made a phenomenally ignorant decision. I picked up the bottle once again because through my distorted alcoholic lenses life could seem pretty good when I was buzzed. But it wasn’t, not even remotely close. And I wasn’t even remotely buzzed, I was near death. This escape hatch brought me to the bottom. I couldn’t walk and was admitted into the ICU for 4 days. But even then, a few months would pass and this alcoholic’s twisted kaleidoscopic thinking would once again seek refuge in a vodka bottle. The relief I might have obtained was ever so fleeting and the damage ever so permanent.
I still will catch myself trying to convince, well…myself that it sure felt better than this. But that is not true today and it never will be. My active alcoholism and addiction proved to be one epic disaster after another.
And I hold myself fully responsible for those disasters.
So to describe what it’s now like to face it all head on with no evasive maneuvering options, it has been a roller coaster of extreme emotional pain that has found a way to manifest itself physically. I’ve found myself curled into a ball, crying as the pain was very real…I’d feel it physically, in my upper abdomen and complete chest cavity. Real physical pain being experienced by a heart that could not bear one more loss…yet was forced to.
Yet on the flip side, there are times I experience a euphoric high that has been obtained by (nope, not bi-polar they tried that one on-didn’t fit) full awareness and understanding that I wasn’t the crazy one, the weak one, the mentally unstable one. NO! I was the normal one having to deal with an extremely abnormal amount of bullshit to put it bluntly.
The unfortunate thing that I’ve finally discovered is that there’s no way around the pain. Believe me, I have tried. The only way to eradicate it is to boldly enter straight into it.
I believe that time has come. And I’m sorry to be the one to tell you but, “You’re all coming with me.”
There has always been an Ugly accomplice to my addictions and compulsive behaviors. And that is deception. There was always some level of deception that accompanied my obsessions, addictions, or compulsions. Some might have required a substantial level of camouflage so then my lies would have to rise to that level. And vice versa.
At no time do I wish to evade culpability from the deception yet I want to establish the critical difference between the narcissist’s deception and others.
I lied to protect the only mechanisms I had in place at the time to avoid intensely uncomfortable emotions.
Calling myself out for a minute- Isn’t that precisely why a narcissist lies? “to protect the only mechanisms they have in place at the time to avoid intensely uncomfortable emotions.” Like I said, hard questions are surfacing as I write.
I never lied to deliberately cause pain or to create hardship for another being. There was never, not for a second, within my lying any intention of malice, revenge or destruction. I believe those are in fact the basis of why a narcissist lies. The level of satisfaction experienced is in direct proportion to the level of trauma they can inflict with abuse.
I pray that these memoirs, which are solely my narratives, are not perceived as a means to shift blame, or run for cover. This is why I offer these sins, MY SINS to be seen in the light of the sincere honesty that I intend for these blogs to possess. I was never perfect or innocent or without blemish. Believe me, I’ve made some monumentally dumbass decisions. That being said, I also never deserved to be everyone’s scapegoat. The cruelest imaginable punishment for my sins was for me to be made to take ownership of everyone else’s as well as my own. For those who’ve heaped their wrongdoings upon me, I release them back to you as they were never mine to carry. Not then, not now and not ever.
I continue daily to accept and repair the damage I created during my active addiction. There have been and will continue to be consequences from my choices and behavior. There will also be incidents recalled in which soft lighting won’t be provided. For anyone. That’s not how this works anymore.
Once a liar… NOT always a liar. Sometimes a person actually does step up and do the right thing, even when it’s the hardest thing. Because sometimes the truth is all a person may have to hold onto. For without it, only a stark and lonely isolation exists.
And there, past the closets locked tight with denial, fear and ego….tucked deeply within oneself, that is where the skeletons of one’s secrets go to die.
Let them out.
Let them do a two step stomp and be set free.
“When you start thinking about what your life was like 10 years ago–and not in general terms, but in highly specific detail–it’s disturbing to realize how certain elements of your being are completely dead. They die long before you do. It’s astonishing to consider all the things from your past that used to happen all the time but (a) never happen anymore, and (b) never even cross your mind. It’s almost like those things didn’t happen. Or maybe it seems like they just happened to someone else. To someone you don’t really know. To someone you just hung out with for one night, and now you can’t even remember her name.”
I learned to lie by the very best, my mother. A theatrical, dramatic, and visually stunning woman, who could charm her way through life, or so she thought. I learned early on about white lies. Harmless lies that quickly evolved into what I now refer to as lemon drop lies. But it took me a “minute” longer, more like 40+ years to discover that my Mama had leveled up in the lying games.
The occasional white lie went something like this, “Oh no, we can’t make it, my husband has to work that night.”
Then came the lemon drop lie, “Oh no honey, we’re not racist, it has nothing to do with the fact that he’s black. We don’t have a problem with it. We’re just protecting you from the other parents that do.”
When I say leveled up, I’m not sure how to describe the lie other than a complete and unstable depart from reality. It goes something like this, “ You know Kasie, I just realized that I’m not as strong as you are anymore.” We were on a Skype call and she was down south at my brothers house. Now also important to mention, no one was talking to me at the time. Except for her. I mean for months. Nobody would talk to me, or answer my calls or my emails. But she would, sometimes. And she picked this specific visit at my brother’s house 600 miles away, to skype me out of the blue. Why? To set the trap. That is why.
She’d begun to wage a smear campaign against me. At first I didn’t understand what she kept talking around/talking about (you know exactly what I mean if you’ve ever experienced one of the covert narcissist’s attacks. They’re often so confusing but of course you’re the one, the only one that can’t understand them) so I asked. Her timid, childlike reply was, “Well, that time I came to your house and you shoved me out of the garage, I realized that I’m just not as strong as you are Kacie.”
She had certainly upped her game to a new level alright. I was frozen in sudden confusion but slowly what she was doing began to take hold. I slowly replied, “Mom, …what are you…doing?” She proceeds to repeat herself in the same manner as before. I suddenly realized she was laying a trap. I firmly responded, “Mom…listen to me clearly, I have never touched you or pushed. Not once, not ever.”
“You most certainly did Kacie, you just don’t remember. You were probably drinking. Anyways you know that isn’t why I am calling you, I’m only talking to you because I love you and I’ve missed you. Why do you always want to fight” Then leaving no opening for a response, she continues, “I’m not going to allow this. I’m having a good time here with your brother.”
Yeah, um…ok. No. She clearly called to set me up on camera alleging that I’ve physically abused her. I appropriately defend myself because it never happened and now somehow I’ve started a fight with the intention to ruin her trip.”
Happy Trails ~ praying it’s perhaps only a sad detour until we meet again, somewhere out there…beyond right and wrong, pain and fear, past all the learned defenses and manufactured resentments. Back to the imaginations of our childhood that sprang wondrously to life by the magic of our innocence and the sound of our laughter. We were trailblazers together riding our schwinns, making our own dirt roads and spending so many hours beneath those old moss covered oaks. I’ll never not for a minute, an hour or a day, will I ever forget you. The real you.
If This is What Goodbye Feels Like, I Don’t Ever Want Another Hello
Located below contains the actual texted dialogue between the Golden Child and the Scapegoat. Roles which have been assigned and revoked all our lives by the Maternal Covert Narcissist which I can no longer call my mother. She had her work cut out for her no doubt. All that triangulation, manipulation,deception, invalidation, yes, all of that work finally paid off. She’s achieved her pinnacle of success. Breaking apart a bond that no one on earth, not me that’s for certain, ever believed could have been broken. Well, this scapegoat, black sheep, throw away, disposable and oh my goodness, let’s not forget, (in hushed, sing song whispers, and nodding heads, “a littttllle unbalanced”) child is still standing. This divinely treasured and priceless woman of grace and beauty is still standing. Even if standing alone.
And, no…the good family friends and extended family members, no, they will most definitely NOT be standing beside me. That’s okay. I believe I have a precious few rogue soldiers, that believe in me, yet one never truly knows. I do know this. I don’t need to be surrounded by a life-support system of adoring friends or to be coddled as my superficial wounds are cared for by synthetic family members. As God as my Witness, my Savior and my very Existence, I don’t need another living soul to believe me anymore. I know the truth, about “Him” (The-X) and about “Her” and I know how they were when company came over, and I know who they were when no one was around. Damn light switches is what they were. If I sound a little harsh, please let me explain something, for 49 years I believed a beautiful lie. But a lie cannot hold up, it will without failure come crashing down. You become frozen, attempting to absorb the absolute loss…staring at the rubble of the only belief system you’ve ever known. It’s trash, all of it. So even the good has gone bad. Because knowing the truth of it all, it’s like painting with acrylics- very quickly 2 can get muddled together becoming, well, a nothing color. Yes, there is in fact the color of nothing. It’s quite ugly by the by the way. Sometimes I imagine if I was a color…ah…well, no one can ever really be a color now can they?
So now my memories are brittle and chipping away thanks to their relentless gaslighting, and my faith in people? Oh my goodness no. Not again my friend. After last night? After this bone-biting, deep betrayal? No thank you. I’m still standing, yes. But barely…should a strong breeze come by? ….well, there’s no guarantee. Funny thing is, there never has been.
Less than 4 minutes ago, one of the most poignant pieces which I believe I have every written or will ever write, well, I wrote. I felt an energy flowing through my fingertips as I bled words from my soul through this keyboard. I wept, I was naked and honest and probably very close to delivering something of lasting and solid worth. And then I clicked “Save Draft”.
POOF! It was gone. Gone into another dimension, realm, or maybe into an overflowing garbage can in some alien’s kitchen, but with certainty, it was GONE.
Those 5 stolen paragraphs were my goodbye. How on earth can a lifetime of memories and laughter and love be exquisitely written and encapsulated in 5 simple paragraphs? Well it was, and it was beautiful. It would have been the perfect goodbye to my first best friend in the whole wide world, my brother.
“Gee, thanks mom!” as I flash a giant pearly smile that’s been embedded in my psyche since I don’t remember when. (Oh! But she would because she remembers everything!) I sometimes wonder if she did it every day… the gaslighting. (I’ll tell ya one thing- it was roast beef NOT liver. It had strings around it. I must have been six.) I remember so much now. Over half a journal in 30 days are filled with her gaslighting. The incidents of abuse were always remembered wrong, my memory always being discounted and dismissed as exaggeration or being “so creative.” My very last question to her would be, “Why? Why did you have to break US? You are closer to the grave than the cradle, so why break the bond between he and I? You’re a selfish, self-centered ego fueled shell of a being still refusing to accept the reality of what YOU have done. Flipping through this tear drenched, composition notebook, I try to imagine what it must have been like to be you. But then I remember what it ,was like to be me. Each gagged and blindfolded memory violently choking on every one of your replays and sound bites. I was NOT happy when you sent Brian away. I was 11, I remember. You can repeat that all day, every day, until your dying day, but I screamed for you to stop the car because he wouldn’t stop running after us. I screamed at you remember? You with the phenomenal memory, do you remember how long he ran for??? I do! A long time, I know because I watched him until he was too small and I couldn’t see him anymore. I can still see him running, even now, I can see him. That is how long he’s been running! Look in the goddamn rearview mirror! See him? I know you do! And I hate you for trying to convince me that I was happy without him. I hate you for your relentlessly repetitive lies about so much that happened, or how I felt. You were ALWAYS correcting me about how I felt . How is that even possible? I remember him being forced to eat his entire meal off the ground because he chewed with his mouth open! Well you prepared in 30 minutes or less your alternate reality and fed it to me, the “once upon a time golden child.” Though I may have held that forced bite of your “the plate was just set down on the floor for only a second and then picked right back up” story in my mouth for a while, I never swallowed it. Today I spit it right back out at you! Because I remember him sobbing on the floor. I can STILL hear him, can’t you? Cant you?!!! No. No of course not…so now you’ve assigned me to carry the sharp barbs of being a liar, mentally unbalanced, or whatever you can cling to that will discredit this child’s surprisingly accurate recall. No longer is my memory being held captive and starved of the actual truth. And now you’ve even gotten Brian to buy into it and do some of your dirty work. I thank God every day that I’m the scapegoat now. I thank God every day that you reassigned roles. I thank God every day that I will never again have to sit at your table, because eventually, by your bullshit or my booze, I would have likely choked to death. Perhaps that’s what went so wrong with your head. You created this “reality” of being nothing less than a loving, doting, selfless mother and you actually swallowed it! You swallowed your very own lie. And somehow, I doubt I will ever really know, but you got Brian to swallow it as well. I remember you telling me that Grama didn’t like me, and even that she didn’t want me around so much. She thought that I was lazy and that she liked my cousin a lot more than me. Was that even true? Why over so many years had you still forbidden that I ever have any contact with this cousin? Wait. She knew. She must have known. Wow. I just now realized, she must have found you out, the mask must have slipped that long ago.~~~ There’s more, so much more, but Yeah…if I could force one truthful answer from those forever painted and lying lips of yours, I’d just ask, Why?”
Is this for real? Is this what a clean and sober goodbye feels like? Really??? Because if so, I never in my lifetime want another hello.
No, the dance was NOT worth the pain. NO. The sunshine was NOT worth the rain. Not THIS pain. Not THIS rain. This is Shit. Shit beyond shit, and this shit cannot be censored to appear anything less than absolute homegrown 100% Grade A SHIT. A goodbye without a voice or a vice is excruciating.
It has been a little over 48 hours, and I had myself convinced that I was surely going to pass away last night. My heart exploding with each beat, shallow breaths, and a sense of doom then surrender…of a white flag…I had nothing left in me to fight for anything. So I said, truly I said this out loud “God, its me again. I’m so sorry I wrecked this life you gave me, but please just take care of my children, and my grand babies, God, it’s okay if I have to go to Hell, I understand, but please oh God, please grant my babies, all of my babies eternal life with you. I love you and I’m so sorry God. Amen.” And I closed my eyes and waited.
Well I must have gotten tired of lying there in the dark, waiting for my soul to be collected, and so I fell asleep. I awoke slightly before dawn, my pounding heart had settled, the emotional pain was still present but was being quiet. Much more quiet. I could breathe. So I quietly got up, hoping not to awaken the screaming, painful loss again, found my way in the dark to a new bag of chips ahoy cookies. Cradled them in my arm and grabbed my precious ice cold gallon of 2% milk. I sat right in the middle of the floor, in the dark, drinking out of the gallon eating my cookie, and I figured well, I guess I’m gonna live after all. I guess I better get back to work. Because there are people, a lot of people who need to know they’re not alone, and there’s a way out of this shit storm, even if only one night at a time, one breath at a time, or one cookie at a time. We will find a way out…oh, better make that 3 cookies at a time, we’re gonna need them.
Upon my final review, I’m afraid I went about this conversation entirely the wrong way. I had the right reasons, but the wrong approach. I hold things in far too long, and then out of left field I deliver an unexpected downpour of emotions, ideas, beliefs, thoughts, etc. I know that setting boundaries and being able to communicate my feelings is imperative to my continued sobriety, but I’m pretty sure I don’t have the hang of it yet, the delivery that is….and by text?… (SMDH) That being said, I still must stand my ground. I was not once deceptive, aggressive or condescending. I was asking to be heard, validated and my boundaries to be understood and respected. Apparently my voice was received much differently. And apparently my brother has become quite comfortable manipulating the truth. I may have been abrasive, I may have been too harsh (still don’t think so, but the possibility still exists.) But when he asked me to leave him alone that night. I did. He continued the conversation the following morning, not me. He engaged continuously throughout the day as did I. Everyone knows I’m wordy. It’s just me, always has been. But what happened at the end, when he sent me those final texts. The ones that were clearly meant for anyone in this world rather than me. I’m telling ya’ll, that truth? It makes a painfully sharp pillow to sleep upon when night closes in.
This link provides clear insight into the covert manipulation and various styles of communication which clearly harbor abusive and controlling intention. I am doing so not to be vindictive or to prove anything. I no longer need to prove a thing, because I now trust my own intelligence and intuitive ability. I do so because my silence is no longer a harbor for their twisted games and scapegoating. At the onset of all of this I simply asked that we address the dysfunction that has plagued our family for my lifetime by means of family counseling. The preferred route by others was that I shut my damn mouth. Even if it meant my sanity or my life. Silence was not only expected, it was demanded. I chose my sanity. I chose my life. I chose me. And THAT is why I will never “shut my mouth” when speaking the truth.
The display of strength and intelligence by the scapegoat is unacceptable and boundaries intolerable. So the narcissist’s interns, puppets, or golden children have been trained to silence the whistleblower by a secondary psychological abuse. For if the severe toxicity of the family’s dysfunction is exposed, the reigning narcissist’s house of cards, which took a lifetime to build, will indeed come to a total and catastrophic collapse.
Online advice to Felons who cannot find work: Become a Blogger 😳
In 2014 I was charged with attempted murder. (true story) The first and only crime I’d ever committed. I have taken a few disastrous detours in my life, but none as off road as this. Once you’ve experienced facing life in prison, well the little hiccups in life like a few overdrafts on your checking account, or waiting in line at the DMV don’t seem to cause any real worry.
You have to believe me when I say I didn’t do it. O.K. well, no, actually no, you don’t really have to believe me because apparently I really did try to kill the schmuk. (More about that later in blogger land.).
However with a B.A.L. of .397, I couldn’t really tell you what exactly happened. What I do know is that I am clearly an alcoholic. And I needed serious help.
Fast forward five years, and voila, here we are!
Today I am raising my 11 year old son as a sober and awakened being, rather than acting as a bystander watching my own life unravel. I have taken ownership of my past, and present…only God knows what our future holds. Today I am an active participant in my own life and making enormous strides toward an incredibly bright future, where I no longer allow others to write my story.
My children and I have paid long enough and dearly enough. This cover up has gone way too far and I will speak the truth. I will shout the truth if need be to save a single soul from the living Hell I have endured.
That being said, well there’s been some bones that have been rattling in the closet for some time now, and I’m figuring they got a story to tell. Silence harbors secrets, and I’m pretty sure these secrets are getting a little dangerous to keep. I know that I’ve personally been put through a shit storm to keep these secrets silent. And today, I speak with strength, courage, and a little bit of menopause, when I say, “No More!”
I admittedly made some catastrophic decisions that irreversibly changed the course of my life. But while I own my sins of yesterday, there are some that refuse to own a single one of theirs. I wouldn’t mind in the least really, because I believe that karma never loses an address, however some will not let me live in peace. They have relentlessly continued their charade and manipulation of truth at the cruelest level imaginable. With the information that has come to light a little over a month ago, I have no obligation to keep quiet about the covert psychological abuse that occurred during my mother’s reign over our family. It was deliberate and covert. And it somehow served a purpose for her that is twisted and at times sadistic. I refuse to provide her with soft lighting throughout my autobiography.
On that note, I must always keep in mind that in somebody else’s story, I am quite possibly the scoundrel, the arch nemesis, or quite simply, the bad guy.
So welcome aboard, and please keep your hands and feet in the ride at all times….it’s likely to get a little bumpy…
I sometimes think that my denial was a damn good tranquilizer. 🙈🙉🙊
Plllleeease…. let me sleep in a little longer. ….I’m not ready to wake up yet.
The alarm clock of truth has woke me up once again and I can’t hit the snooze button of denial anymore.
Elation, joy, release, and sanity pouring like deliciously, sweet honey into my soul, and yet….simultaneously experiencing one of the deepest heartaches my conscious mind can yet fully comprehend.
There wasn’t really that much different between that day and any other day, except for just one thing. My 74 year old mother told me to sit down. She then excitedly and in a strangely childlike voice, told me she had gotten engaged. With bated breath she waited for my response. I cried.
That might not seem too incredibly significant to most people. Yet, to my mother, it was abhorrent. Crying, or for that matter any emotion that she did not determine appropriate for her schedule, her needs, or her consistently inconsistent expectations was simply unacceptable. Her immediate admonishment to my tears was, “You know, you’re just like my mother, Kacie, you always have to take my happiness away from me. Nobody else has a problem with this but you.” Typically guilt and shame would have jumped into action, but at this particular moment and on this particular day, something very different occurred.
In the past, any crying episode would be lost in translation with her and when the incident was brought up in the future, she would reflect the experience back to me entirely different than my memory served me. She’d often recount that I had raged and become explosive. This specific time she accused me a few days later that I had verbally attacked her. And yet I clearly remembered crying and asking for time. I was always questioning myself. Always having self doubt and confusion because I trusted her and I loved her and I thought she knew best. I was wrong. I knew myself best. I just didn’t give myself credit where credit was due. Today I trust myself and I am willing to sacrifice relationships with those who cannot understand that.
A few days before this encounter with my mother, I had read an online article about Covert Maternal Narcissism. Those three sentences brought her castle of cards to a complete collapse. Because in this article common phrases and insults were listed that are commonly used by a CMN. All that she said to me, matched nearly word for word, and it was like a wrecking ball came through and my denial was disintegrated. This was the “A-Ha!” moment I had so desperately needed to save my life.
You see, I am an alcoholic and a drug addict.
After numerous months of AA meetings, 12 step recovery work, sponsorship and therapy I was struggling to successfully restore family relationships. I just couldn’t break through this invisible barrier and I had no way to explain it or understand what was happening. And here’s why, because you cannot heal in the same place that you got sick. • Mind-Blown •
During my recovery I had become removed from my family and I began to get well. Once I understood, accepted and became accountable for my manipulative and hurtful behavior during my active addiction and alcoholism, I was able to heal in so many ways, I cannot begin to cover them all.
I was excited to finally be welcomed back home with all of my new found knowledge and pink cloud charisma. But rather than address any core issues within the family dynamics, everyone quietly swept them under the proverbial carpet and I remained the alcoholic daughter that had brought the family such public disgrace.
It wasn’t more than 3 months before I relapsed.
I kept going to meetings and I continued to work tirelessly to stay clean and sober and to figure out why I just couldn’t get a handle on this. And then I got to my knees and prayed.
In recovery , and with sustained abstinence, layer upon layer of denial systems are broken apart and our personal manipulation structures that we have developed over the years are examined and released. We are shown that we must own our part in our addiction and accept responsibility for the pain that we had caused others to suffer. By bringing it to the light we could then acknowledge it, accept it and own it.
There was a wise and gentle older gentleman who had 27 years sobriety. He took me to the side after one of the meetings, and he said, “Kacie, yes, you own 100% of your part in this, of your drinking, of your manipulation to continue your drinking and the damage you have created because of your drinking.”
Then his voice deepened and I’ll never forget his next sentence, “BUT, you don’t own one ounce more, cuz trust me, they’ll let you.”
So while all the fingers had been pointing at me and having been told to “get it together”, to “stop drinking”, to “go get help, you’re sick Kacie”, not a single pamphlet about alcoholism was read, nor a single inquiry online about how to possibly support a family member that is fighting alcoholism and addiction. I believe my mother went to one Al-anon meeting, now I’m convinced it was for strictly for appearance sake. Later after I had been allowed back home, I asked her if she was going to any of the meetings, she quickly replied in a dismissive tone, “No. I’m not going back. Those people are far too controlling, all of them.”
I was out of sight and by all intents and purposes, clearly out of mind. It took my youngest daughter to reach out to me before any of the others. The irony in that is that I hurt her the most severely at the end stage of my drinking. She was the one that truly took the brunt of my alcoholic rage, and yet only days after she had given birth, she arranged to meet me (by my complete surprise) and brought along with her my new grandson. And as she cautiously laid down her anger and pain, she also laid her child in my arms for the first time. She offered me compassion and tenderness that I had never recalled experiencing from my very own mother.
As I attempted to reintegrate back into the family with tools, wisdom, and experience, it was evident that no one wanted to engage in any discussions about boundaries or to learn healthy and open communication skills. I was confounded with the idea that they all wanted me to get help but no one was willing to even look at the possibility of dysfunction and toxicity within the family. I realize now that sometimes, some things can be kept in the dark and kept silent for so long that denial simply wins by default.
And up until 9 days ago, denial had held me hostage to the truth as well. Although it was a brutal awakening to my mother’s insidious psychological abuse which our entire family had endured for decades, I felt as if chains of iron steel had been shattered and I was free.
Please understand, the cognitive dissonance that was unleashed was not going to make this a walk in the park. Over the next week I went back and forth trying to unsee, what I had so clearly seen. But slowly, with my journals, letters, text messages and voicemails, there was only one truth.
My mother knew no boundaries and her control was suffocating and severe, and yet was always camouflaged under the guise of love and concern. She subjected not only her children to these constantly transitioning realities but her grandchildren and even her great grandchildren. On occasions far to numerous to count, if I did not agree with her or her revisions of my very own memories, she’d make sure to punish me with disparagingly, untrue narratives that she’d personally present to various family and friends. More often than not, her go to was that I’d somehow or other “threatened” her, and so she would choreograph whomever bought the lie to protect this “frail, loving and devoted” mother. It’s truly been a challenge to even stay alive at times. (Yeah, I’ve had a couple of 5150’s before.)
I’ve waited my whole life to start writing, The one sure gift that I knew I possessed and trusted in and yet, I couldn’t begin. Now with clarity and conviction I now know why I was not able to write before. I couldn’t write a lie. And so as long as I believed in her distorted illusion, I would never know the truth to be able to write it.
Oh, and remember how I told you that I fell to my knees and prayed? We’ll be careful what you pray for and be prepared to receive what you prayed for. Because if your feet aren’t steady and your mind isn’t ready, an answered prayer can be awfully slippery to hold onto.