Texting saved my life. Or at least acted as a life line. I would be in a very different place today if texting had not existed during my initial descent into untangling myself. My selves. Texting kept me connected to you when I was geographically far away but desperate for someone to hold onto. Texting helped get me out of bed, off the kitchen floor, out of the winter’s night, out of the baby section at the store when I was frozen between soft blankets and woolly lambs. You were there at the other end of texts when Izzy got her period, when Jill refused to talk to other people. You were there at the other end of texts when I was lost, literally and emotionally. Those were crazy days. Messy days. And I made mistakes. I couldn’t understand about boundaries and your own space because for me, just then, life was about holding on anyway I could.
Then there was the time the texting stopped. Cold turkey. It was like a huge slap across the face and sent me whirling in ways you couldn’t imagine. I felt so ashamed and guilty. I believed that I had lost you, that I had sent you running far away. That I had been too bad, too needy, too lost, too wrong, too hurt and you had finally seen the truth. You tried to explain about it but by then I’d hidden it deep in my heart. Rejection always finds a home in my heart. In the deepest places.
Brené Brown has been teaching me about vulnerability. The good kind of vulnerable. (Lord knows I know enough about the unhealthy vulnerable!) Being vulnerable is hard. It makes you really look at yourself, dirt and all, and it then often leads to hard conversations. Because you can’t be vulnerable without seeing the truth. Your truth, the truth of others.
I’m a lot stronger these days. I’ve grown up and faced a lot of shit. It’s not finished. I know that. (Does one ever get to the point where we can say “I’m finished”? I doubt it.) But I function in ways I’ve never functioned before. I feel solid. I feel new peace settling in and spreading.
And yet, there are some scars that aren’t healing quickly.
So when I texted the day before yesterday after months and months and was met with silence, I felt the same shame come and wrap itself around me. I texted again to see if maybe there’d been a glitch in the iphone universe. But still, silence on text. And this old, old shame was joined with a new shame. The shame that in this new world, where I walk more solidly, where I understand much more about boundaries, where you have a whole new life, where I have a whole new life…even in this place, I feel unworthy of text.
I know. It sounds pathetic. It sounds childish. It sounds like I need to get a life. Especially to an outside person. I could never possibly outline all the nuances of our situation. I knew that when I wrote this it would sound whiny and pathetic. But that’s part of being vulnerable. The truth is that this is stirring up wounds that aren’t yet healed. And I can’t afford to hide these happenings anymore. But there are things I can do to balance my ship. Tell the truth about what’s happening, reduce the chance of it happening again, focus on the things that are really working.
Will I end up visiting you today? I’m not sure.