Monday, September 26, 2005

A Year of My Own: Part 2

Well, my year is not quite over yet, and so many wonderful and painful things have happened I don't quite know where to begin.

I have learned alot about myself so far, but I also know I have only scratched the surface. One of the most important lessons I have learned is that self-improvement takes a lifetime. I will never be perfect, and some days will be better than others. When I started on this phase of my self-discovery, all I wanted was to go back to "normal." I wanted to get the emotional, physical and spiritual pain I was feeling down to a manageable level.

I was tired of being afraid of my own shadow, of jumping out of my skin everytime I heard a noise when trying to sleep. I wanted to pretend that what happened never happened and get my life back. While the fear has subsided to a certain degree, I have also had to look at the choices I made in my life that led up to that point.

I know that I am not responsible for my ex-boyfriend's actions, that what he did to me was not my fault. But I was well aware of his anger problem, which is why we were not dating at the time this occurred. I also knew his drug use had increased, because everytime I saw him he acted crazier and crazier. The fact of the matter is, I chose this man, and did not break things off when I saw him spiraling downward.


Because I thought I could save him. I loved him, wanted him to be happy with himself and with me, and thought that maybe, just maybe, I would be more successful than his past girlfriends in helping him become the great man that he was. I have wrestled with the demons of addiction and mental illness myself and come out the other side a stronger person.

Since Part 1, I have continued with the PTSD support group and Al-Anon, both of which I have found extremely helpful.

In the PTSD group, we have been focusing on mindfulness and spiritual development from a Buddhist perspective. I meet with the facilitator one-on-one about once a week, and call him on a regular basis.

I do affirmations about 10 times a day. I meditate and pray on a daily basis.

I obtained a restraining order and my ex spent several months in jail. After he was released, I ran into him at a 12-step meeting. He called me about a month later and I had him arrested again for violating the restraining order. I was issued a new restraining order and moved.

I also have started going back to church and was baptized in May.

I completed 12-weeks of therapy.

I have also started dating again, but have been very careful not to let myself get focused on a guy who needs fixing. Even though it has been over a year since I broke up with the last one, I no longer feel I need a man to make me whole.

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