Letters of Import: Private Writings to a Psychoanalyst
Miss Seeing You-Difficult 13
Written by Jennifer Kiley
Illustrated by j. kiley
First Published March 19th 2013
Published Early Tuesday AM
Thirteenth Posted June 11th 2013Tuesday, December 25th, 2007
Not seeing you today was so painfully difficult. I realize it is Christmas day and you are with your family and I am, of course, with mine. Our furry kitties, Patrick, Toker and Little Sparky and our feathery Amazon Parrot, V Woolf. At present, we are all spread out together in the family room. Scottie is looking for a great book to read for the holiday week. She likes to choose a special book every year. She starts it out and when her voice begins to crack, it becomes my turn. I love this part. When I was in school, I prided myself on being able to read without a mistake or tripping over a word for the greatest length of anyone in my class. It was a feat that I still hold the record to. It’s a good habit to have if you ever have to do a book reading. Which as you may know, I do fairly often. More locally, then in the past, when I use to travel all over the states and sometimes even over in Europe, particularly in England.
I know this is suppose to be a joyful time of the year. Scottie and I have a good time together. We have a special Christmas Eve dinner, which was delicious last night, and there are always leftovers. We started the Christmas Eve feast our first Christmas together, before we were actually together. But that story is for another time. Something has been running through my mind, which I cannot talk about in therapy, private or group, but I need to get it out of my system. It has to do with crying. All the films we watch at Christmas should make me tear up or cry, especially at the end of Alastair Sims’s Scrooge, A Christmas Carol. His is the all time best film on Dicken’s story. I’ve watched it every year since I was a child. That is what I want to talk about. When I was a child, I remember I would swallow my tears in the lump that formed in my throat. I was too afraid to cry or for anyone to see the tears in my eyes. I better explain why. It is not a pleasant story.
I don’t cry. It is something I cannot do. Only when something so traumatic happens can I cry and then I can’t seem to stop. Everything sets me off. But only in private can I show my tears. I shut down completely around everyone, even Scottie, and during a sad film where crying is completely acceptable behavior. As I said, Tiny Tim always gives me a lump in my throat. It is my body trying to protect me by holding back the tears. It’s probably because I really want to scream. There is so much rage pent up inside of me. I want to let go of it but I’m afraid.
It’s shame. I am ashamed of my tears. There is a really good reason. When I was really young I use to cry all the time. It really drove my mother insane. My brothers would tease me and call me a cry baby. I hate that term. It made me cry even more. My mother use to tell my brothers to leave me alone. She left me alone to. But then suddenly, I must have reached a certain age when my mother didn’t find it acceptable any longer for me to cry. She flipped out and became some dark creature and mean as Hell. It started. She turned into a Demon. When ever she found me alone, she turned on me, like some cornered animal and started to beat me, all the while screaming at me. I became terrified and of course I would start to cry. This made her even more angry. Her seeing the tears in my eyes and falling down my cheeks enraged her. That’s when I discovered that tears were dangerous. They ignited a full blown rage in my mother. That was when I started thinking of her as evil and in therapy I came up with the name for her of The Shadow Mother. That’s what I called her in my mind. I cannot use the other word alone. It disturbs me.
My tears from that point on caused me to be physically, emotionally, psychologically, sexually and spiritually abused in the most vicious ways imaginable. The depth of abuse crossed the lines of any kind of abuse in ones childhood. The Shadow Mother wasn’t my only abuser but the things she did to me were so harsh. One would not expect a mother to do these things to their young child. Now that I am older and understand more I can describe what she did to me. She was into bondage and dominance mixed in with sadomasochism. In her beatings there were not any safe words to make it stop. That’s when I felt it brought the abuse into a questionably sexual realm with The Shadow Mother. The word No and Stop in her mind meant to keep abusing. Crying only doubled and tripled the intensity of the beatings. She started out by striking me through my clothing at first but as the frequency of the abuse increased eventually she would not get enough satisfaction with striking cloth, she wanted to beat my body on my flesh where she could see the effect of her brutality. She wanted to see the bruises and the tears in my skin. She used various weapons. Usually what ever was near at hand but she had a favorite switch taken from the branches of a tree from our yard that she liked the most.
Silence and no movement were the only things when combined that worked to stop her. I needed to be dead or show the appearance of someone dead for the abuse to stop. Maybe not technically but physically without sound or motion. That was the first part. When that was over there was one more phase to the abuse. It wasn’t over until I, the child and one abused, went to her closed bedroom door and groveled at the door with The Shadow Mother inside. She was always dead silent. I was always on my knees pleading with her to forgive me. I had to ask my abuser to forgive me. I’d ask her multiple times to forgive me. I was trained well into being submissive but even with all the pleading there was no forgiveness. Not ever. The door never opened. There was never a sound made from inside those walls behind that damned door. I was left there till oblivion escorted me away. Memory blanked from that point on. Rewind tape and repeat performance at a future but unknown time. Just her performance was the only thing that was repeated over and over again in all its brutality and my submission and pleas for forgiveness were echoed in those halls and bedrooms.
I am sorry that I am telling you this now but Christmas is about family and I have no family. I left them all behind when I became brave enough and my first therapist managed to convince me I needed to leave that place of unbalanced confusion, madness and inequity. There are no blood family I want anything to do with except a niece and her family. We are close and keep in touch but I have never met her. My agoraphobia has prevented us getting together. Her family want to meet Scottie and me. It’s just I have a terrible time being around people. I relate to them from a distance, through cyberspace. With the few exceptions. Physical contact is not something I am very good at except with my animals and Scottie. I do group and private therapy but do not relate well in my private sessions. As far as group goes, I can handle the people in group as long as it’s in a therapy room. Now, it seems to be developing into something impossible and uncomfortable to handle. If you weren’t there Annie, I wouldn’t return. Your entering my life when you did has saved me. I hope in the near future you will come to my rescue even further. You becoming my psychoanalyst is my Christmas wish and those wishes always should be answered.
Merry Christmas Annie. And thank you for entering my life when you did. It means more to me than I am able to express to you in person at the moment. Oh, by the way, Scottie finally settled on her choice of books to read over the holidays. It’s Evelyn Waugh’s “Brideshead Revisited.” We loved the series and have watched it several times. I seem to recall that the opening line of the series was spoken by Charles Rider, played by the actor Jeremy Irons (one had no idea of who he was at the time in the states) saying off camera, “I knew Sebastian by sight long before I met him. That was unavoidable for, from his first week, he was the most conspicuous man of his year by reason of his beauty, which was arresting, and his eccentricities of behaviour, which seemed to know no bounds… I was struck less by his looks than by the fact that he was carrying a large teddy-bear”.” It should be fun hearing Sebastian talk about his teddy bear Aloysius, “If it could only be like this always – always summer, always alone, the fruit always ripe and Aloysius in a good temper…” Love both of these lines but I wish the second one could be true most of the time. I, also, love all the adventures Sebastian had with Charles at Cambridge together. Then there is Sebastian’s family, the mother was almost impossible to take to heart and overly pompous in her religiosity and the same of brother Bridie, what a bore.
It was easy to love Sebastian’s sisters Cordelia and Julia, and spending time at Brideshead, the Flyte homestead, that was mostly marvelous in the beginning. And Sebastian’s father was a free spirit, who was accepting and had found love away from England in Italy, away from his wife and the mother of his children. When all starts going wrong, that I don’t like. Sebastian is my favorite and I don’t like that Waugh gives him such a bad turn. It should still be exciting to have Scottie reading to us as I rest my head in her lap and stretch out the rest of my body on the sofa with a throw over me, our cats Patrick, Toker and Sparky curled up on top of the sofa with us, and a fire roaring in the fireplace. Quite the romantic and cozy scene. Add to that some Schubert or Rachmaninoff playing in the background or Michael Hoppe and the sweetness of the spiritually uplifting flute and the peaceful serenity the music induces inside one’s soul.
I’d say thanks for listening. In a way you are, at least in my head. Annie, that does help me make it through, believing that you are there for me. Maybe after this letter you might not want to deal with someone who has been so damaged. It isn’t easy to be around that shit I wrote about. It’s in my psyche and I hate having to remember. I don’t often. My defense mechanisms are like iron vaults. They lock up the darkness as best they can but there is always the sneakiness of memories. They don’t like being trapped in any containment. They have no idea they are so destructive to me. All they want is their freedom. Being creative helps to release them in a way that I have more control over them but one doesn’t have control over one’s nightmares unfortunately. They sneak out through all those symbols in the unconscious, thank you Carl Jung, that collective unconscious that manifests its self by bringing back the dead to haunt me, so that I will be forced to remember, even if it is in code. Eventually, the code is broken and the symbols are understood. They must be. It is the only way to work things out and be rid of their hold on me. Out, out damned nightmares. I may joke but I want my dignity back and my honour and innocence.
Annie, this is what you would have to look forward to if you decide to accept the challenge to be my analyst. I so hope you will. Please don’t turn away from me now. I can feel my insecurities are already starting to grow. There is nobody I am able to turn to who will help me. I’ve tried so many therapists and analysts. I need help. There isn’t much time. My strength is weakening. I feel suicidal so often. Holding back the dam from breaking just won’t work much longer. With all my heart, I am asking you sincerely to please help me.
Sorry for such intensity. I am not able to help myself. It is part of who I am. All I want to say now in finishing this letter is to wish you a great holiday vacation. I hope it’s wonderful spending time with your family. I look forward to seeing you after the first of the year. It will be hard to make it through that long. I will work on being creative. My new screenplay needs working on for Scottie to begin setting up her method of attack. She’s beginning casting after the New Year. The casting department at the studio have lined up actors for auditions after the holidays. So I am under pressure to have something decent for them to read in their try-outs. Plus I want to work are some of my computer art. That should capture my full attention.
I look forward to seeing you the second Tuesday of the New Year. Bye for now. Next week is New Year’s Day. I hope I haven’t totally freaked you out as much as I have myself. “Like madness is the glory of this life.” — Shakespeare-The Timon of Athens
I write these letters in the strictest of confidence. I am not trying to be a coward, but I feel if I don’t hold back now and never send these letters to you, then I am freeing myself up to write whatever I need without any censorship. There will be secrecy to protect you, Annie, and to protect myself. But I also want to record the development of our relationship as it truly happens. At least, in the way it appears in my own mind.
I want you to trust me, Annie. I am freer writing to you this way. If I know I will not be sending these letters to you. I will be more honest with what words I use and feelings I express. I will know I am not hiding anything from coming to the surface. It frees up my libido. I will keep my letters confidential. On my honour, no others shall see these pages, I promise you that.This is the poem I would like to include in this letter. I like to leave a poem if I find one that I would like to share with you. Since I am not even sure if I am going to give these letters to you, I felt it is okay if I include a poem within these letters. And if some day, I change my mind and I hand my building collection of letters to you, then I will likely evaluate all that I have written to determine if all of the content feels acceptable to me to share openly with you. I may feel too shy to be so vulnerable. We will proceed as we have for now and see this as a way of recording the experience of getting to know you and in turn get to know how this all effects me as I record this experience in writing.No Healing But Time
By Madison Taylor
Dec. 23th, 2007
No healing but time.
Even that is a projected hallucination.
Feeling a hold on what is real.
Moments creep in and change things up.
Waiting for time to pass so the pain will stop.
Not able to control the intensity
hurting the flesh
corrupting the instrument of the mind
controls the dam from overflowing.
Tear everything apart
to stop the insanity of waiting
from circling the brain.
The madness takes over
rips it all apart so it becomes bearable.
Eventually, the torture subsides
is replaced with a more acceptable level.
The waiting feels less maddening
the feelings brought down
to a more manageable level.
But the waiting still exists.
The pain remains.
The intensity is spread out
to a bearable diversion of acceptance.
There still exists time between the madness
and the satisfaction
the pain will be subdued
to a reasonable state bearable
to only the divinely mad.
Losing control sometimes
is the only acceptable answer
to certain situations.
Healing needs to be done
only in a way that allows
for all possibilities of acceptance.
LE CHATEAU DE ROCHER
Maksim — Somewhere In Time (A New Version-with Quotations-of the Theme Song for “Letters of Import: Private Writings to a Psychoanalyst”QUOTATIONS from: LETTERS of IMPORT: Private Writings to a Psychoanalyst
The beginning always starts out with a dream.
It is all a dream
And we are all players
In our own nightmares”
— Madison Taylor
“For that fine madness still he did retain,
Which rightly should possess a poet’s brain.”
“Who ever loved that loved not at first sight?”
Christopher Marlowe for “Hero and Leander”
“A therapeutic relationship is often more psycho-emotionally intimate than a marriage, or a romantic attachment. I know things about my patients that they would never dream of revealing to their spouses or families. Why is that? One word — trust. If you do not have a connection with a therapist, you cannot trust them. If you do not have trust, you will not expose yourself, and if you do not expose your innermost being, what good is the therapy?” — unknown but ask any great therapist
“Men have called me mad, but the question is not yet settled, whether madness is or is not the loftiest intelligence…whether much that is glorious–whether all that is profound–does not spring from disease of thought…” — Edgar Allan PoeQUOTATIONS on MISSING YOU-DIFFICULT:
“I like to see people reunited, maybe that’s a silly thing, but what can I say, I like to see people run to each other, I like the kissing and the crying, I like the impatience, the stories that the mouth can’t tell fast enough, the ears that aren’t big enough, the eyes that can’t take in all of the change, I like the hugging, the bringing together, the end of missing someone.” ― Jonathan Safran Foer, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close
“I had my chance.’ He said it, retiring from a lifetime of wanting. ‘I had my chance, and sometimes in life, there are no second chances. You look at what you have, not what you miss, and you move forward.” ― Jamie Ford, Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet
“All I can think about is what she must be doing, and how I wish she were still here.” ― Pittacus Lore, I Am Number Four
“Tamani smiled softly and lifted a hand to her face, tucking a strand of hair behind her ear and letting his thumb rest on her cheek. ‘Trust me, it’s no picnic missing you. I wouldn’t wish it on anyone.” ― Aprilynne Pike, Spells
“He tried to tell me week after week to accept things as they were and move on with my life. But if there was one man who had put his life on hold to wait for something or someone, it was him.” ― Cecelia Ahern, A Place Called Here
“Didn’t I say I’d always be your same stars? If you get to missing me, just look up.” ― Anne Rivers Siddons, Fault Lines
“Usually time alters and affects everything, but when someone you love dies time cannot change that, no amount of time will ever change that, so time stops having any meaning.” ― Rosamund Lupton, Sister
“I won’t let you have it. I won’t give you this moment. I won’t let you fill up this valuable organ…I own it. I won’t do it. I can’t think, I won’t think about it.” ― Coco J. Ginger