I am a damaged individual. (Which is the nice way of saying I’m fucked up.) But you know, that really makes me no different than you, or the guy down the street or even the cashier at the local food mart. Everyone I know is damaged in some way or another. It seems to be part of the chronic human condition. Sure, I know there are varying degrees of being messed up in the head and the multitude of reasons, if written on those tiny pieces of paper found in fortune cookies, if stacked one on top of another would most likely stretch to the moon and back and we each deal with the effects of our damage differently. I know I sure did.
Here’s the thing, you see, while I know we each deal differently with the shit that has happened to us, I try to not let the bad shit get to me or dictate who or what I want to be. It was a hard fought internal war and took years of internal struggle for me to get there. But once I made that decision, I was a much freer and happier person. Now, I’m not saying I’m a well rounded or even balanced individual but I know people who’ve experienced less trauma than I have and they are stunted in their own growth. When I see a person in that situation, I get confused about how they have allowed one or two or hell, even a dozen bad things hold them back from becoming a more relaxed and even pleasant person to be around. It baffles me. But then, I suppose, 20+ years ago, I was in the same boat as them.
Today, I like to think that most of my anger issues of my past are beyond me. And I truly believe they are, but that does not mean that I don’t occasionally get upset. But the things that upset me are not what they once were. Today, idiot drivers in four wheel vehicles seem to be the bane of my two wheeled life. Simply because, four wheelers and more wheelers rarely see a two wheeled vehicles because we have a smaller sight profile. But now biggie, God gave me two fingers for those people. (See, that is where my anger comes into play).
Thinking back on all the crazy shit I’ve had done to me and that I’ve experienced, especially now that I write this, it seems that I should be a much angrier person or at least someone who is in an “I love me jacket” in a padded room. But I’m not. I’m sitting here on my front porch towards the end of a long day and talking to you. Why? I honestly don’t know, I wish I did, but I do know that since I’ve started writing my blog over three years ago, I have discovered it serves as an outlet, kind of like a pressure cooker valve, and the things that are released from inside of me, the anger, hate, frustration and even the love and adoration, helps me cope on a daily basis. So my blogging is a good thing, for me at least.
What is that? You want some history, some details? Nah, no need to go there. I’ve had plenty of experience trying to talk out all the shit I’ve seen and experienced to go into it here. Besides, it would take too long to write it all down… again. You see, one of the many Head Shrinkers I’ve seen over the course of my life have had me write shit like that down on more than one occasion and to tell you the truth, it gets a bit stale. To me at least. Not to mention that every time I followed their instructions, what I wrote ended up in a manila file folder. I can only guess those files are sitting somewhere in a storage facility where no one will ever read them. Thank God for that too.
So where does all this leave me? Simple, I’ve pegged it down to this, and you can take this part of the blog with a grain of salt if you don’t agree. Everyone is a victim and the only way to overcome being a victim is by making peace with the fact that you were once a victim and switch your mindset from a victim mentality to a survivor mentality. Because that is what I did. I stopped wishing the bad things that had happened to me had not and that the people that did them to me would get their punishment. I gave up on revenge and accepted the fact that I had survived everything I had been through and I could either let the past dictate who I am or I could make myself into an image of a human that I would be proud of. I don’t want now nor ever to be a victim but I do want to be a survivor. Once I made the mental cross over from one to the other,
It was and is not an easy thing to do. I still have fits of panic and I am more paranoid than anyone I know in my life but I’m in a place where I can keep things in perspective. Hell, at least I’m not packing dead bodies into body bags overseas of friends, sailors and soldiers I served beside. I have friends that have done that, and they are damaged and I wish I could reach out to them and say “It is all going to be OKAY. The things you are going through will eventually make you a better and stronger person.” But to say that to them seems to be an empty platitude right now.
We are all on a path to self discovery and acceptance. While our goal is the same, our paths are much different and they can be very lonely. If you know someone or are someone in this situation, my heart goes out to you. But, I promise, if you stay the course, work things out in you head to the best of your ability and even if you need help, it is there for you. You will become a better person and you can overcome anything put in your path.
Of course I could be wrong. (But I don't think I am.)
Have a great week.