Life is Getting Better and Better Every Day….

I wrote this exactly two years ago when things were not going particularly well for me. Reading this now I feel so full of pride and gratitude that I have passed this stage and am in a good place.

Yes I’m still in pain with my spinal issues and still awaiting two surgeries one of which is in 10 days. But I’m happy. I’ve met amazing people and have surrounded myself with positive people who make my life better. And I hope I do the same for them.

It’s sad but positive reading where I was this time in 2017. Things will only keep getting better…. I know it. I feel it.

*******

September 2017

I’m tired….

Tired of trying to be perfect

Tired of being in pain

Tired of being defensive

And guarded….

I’m tired of pretending

to be someone I’m not

Tired of my insecurities

Overwhelming my very being….

I’m tired of being sad

Tired of not being good enough

Tired of causing hurt

And disappointment….

I’m tired of trying

And failing….

Tired of being put down

Made to feel inadequate….

I’m tired of being called names

Tired of backstabbers

Tired of worrying

What others think of me…

I’m tired of being consumed

With pain

Tired of wanting to be accepted

Tired of trying to be the

Perfect woman…..

I’m tired of worrying about

My looks

My weight

My figure…..

Of what others think of me

All day every day

I’m tired of this…

I’m tired of being insecure

Tired of lacking confidence….

I’m tired.

Just

Freaking tired

of

Being

Me…

Because me has never been

Good enough.

Ever.

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Part 1 – an Email I Received

This is a two part post.

Part 1 – this is an email I received a few weeks ago. It was something I needed to hear. Something that validated so many things for me. I have asked this person if it’s okay for me to post this without identifying details and he’s agreed to that.

Part 2 will be another post which was my response to him.

Tonight I Have to Cut My Mother out of my Life…

When I left the cult I was born into I never imagined that when I did so I’d have to sever ties with every single person I’ve ever known. That included family.

As one of 10 kids I’ve lost all of them. Mostly because of things they did to me during a bitter custody battle, and not because I cut contact.

When it came to my parents we had almost no contact for the first couple of years. They couldn’t come to terms with me changing so drastically.

Eventually we came to an understanding that we wouldn’t discuss religion and they would accept me as I am. And if not then I would have no choice other than to walk away.

This has worked pretty well. Comments have been made but shut down just as quickly. And it’s been a couple of years now that things have been mostly stable.

I don’t discuss my personal life and don’t antagonise them in any way. Likewise they don’t try to influence me either.

I guess it would be called having mutual respect and agreeing to disagree. I personally don’t agree with their way of life. However it’s not for me to say anything. It’s not my business. I just want to be afforded the same respect. That’s all. Is it too much to expect??

However tonight everything changed. I went to their house after having not been for a while. During the course of a conversation my mother asked me about my relationship with an ex boyfriend.

She asked me outright whether he ever stayed at mine and when I said yes she asked “in which bed”? It didn’t take her long to work out what had been going on.

We had been together for 2.5 years so this wasn’t a fling or a one night stand. This was a proper relationship and I loved him.

All of a sudden she said “so you sell yourself to men”.

I have to be honest here and say things as they are. I’m a very calm person generally but I lost it. I swore outright to her for the first time ever. I was fuming.

“How fucking dare you say that to me – your own daughter? You’re calling me a prostitute?? Why?? Because I was intimate with a partner I was in a relationship with and we weren’t married!!! That is the most disgusting and offensive thing you can possibly say to me. That’s low. Very low”.

Things were said. It got out of control.

I was shaking with anger. I couldn’t believe my own mother would say that to me. I tried to explain to her – whilst I was livid – that morality doesn’t come from religion. It comes from oneself.

She said if I slept with him then I can do that one night and sleep with another man the next night and so on. And that I’m selling my body to random men. The logic… WTF.

Being a secular person doesn’t mean I have no morals and that I sleep around with different men.

I realised I was wasting my time and my hurt and frustration were breaking me. I was on the verge of tears. I didn’t want her to see what her words had done to me. I was desperate to get out of there.

As I got to the front door she said “I’m sorry for what I said”. And I replied “what you said was so offensive and low I don’t know how you could do that to your own child”.

It was dark outside. I got into my car and cried. I cried for the parent I have once again lost. I cried for the pain of being judged so poorly… and I cried for myself. For the pain I was in.

What is “Sleeping Through The Year’s”?

Have you ever come across the phrase “sleeping through your life”? I hadn’t until a couple of years ago when I stumbled across it as I was doing research on traumatic experiences.

In a nutshell, many people who have suffered years of constant trauma will, as an adult, not recall much of that time of their lives. It’s a way of your brain knowing there’s a limit to what can deal with.

So your brain will “make you forget those times” and for some people, like myself, it means that although it was a way of my mind protecting my sanity and not allowing me to have to remember everything, it also means that now I truly struggle to remember basic things.

There are many years which I can barely remember anything I did. I remember the birth of my children but I don’t recall much about my life between the ages of around 5-14 and again from 19-35.

I’ve spent so much time trying to think. Trying to recall. Trying to remember things even if it’s to help others. And slowly over time things are coming back to me.

And when it does, it hurts all over again.

So “sleeping through the years” was my body’s natural coping mechanism. However now I want to know what happened. I want to remember things. But I can’t.

It feels as if I’m someone else, detached, and looking in from the outside in, and feeling constantly frustrated that my memory has let me down when I need it to help others.

What I do remember is painful enough but I want my memory back. I had kept diaries of specific times although I was never totally honest in them for fear of them being found by certain people.

And aside from the 4 books of ramblings which I’ve never read back I have nothing. I will read them one day but even though they were written between 2010-2013 and many years have passed I haven’t got the strength to read them. Yet.

Sharing a Deeply Personal Part of my Journey – Food Banks

It was cold and dark. I looked behind me. Kept glancing back just in case anyone would see me. I’d be mortified if anyone knew where I was heading to.

No one must ever find out where I’ve been. No one. Ever. That’s what I kept thinking. Over and over again as I walked quickly.

But now I’m ready to share this part of my journey.

As I walked down the lonely back streets of London, with a map in my hand, I headed towards the church hall.

I was told it was the place to go. They were kind and caring and would understand me. They knew about “people like me”.

Who are “people like me”? Single mothers who have just left long term relationships or marriages where often there was Domestic Abuse. Situations like mine. Where a woman desperate to feed her children had no means with which to do so.

I felt so utterly humiliated as I entered the car park and saw the big brown doors with a green and white welcome sign.

I thought of turning back.

Then I remembered my bare cupboards.

My empty fridge.

And my 3 kids.

I told myself they mustn’t know. They would be horrified. But I had to do whatever I could to feed them.

So I followed the sign to the “Food Bank”. I had only ever heard of those kind of places on the news. I never for a moment believed I’d be one of the people needing to go there.

So I walked inside, hoping the ground would swallow me up. Yet I was greeted warmly and taken to a side room where I was given help in knowing where to turn to for assistance.

Then I was asked me what I needed. I looked at the floor. I couldn’t look her in the eye.

How had this happened to me? The woman living in a big London house with 2 cars? The confident woman who never had these worries? I mumbled something about if it wasn’t for my kids I’d go hungry. But I couldn’t expect them to come home from school and not feed them.

She understood. She went outside and told me she will be back. She returned with several bags of food. Not only that, she even added toiletries and other things I’d not thought of. I was running on empty and at that moment

I had only thought of the absolute vitals. In my head that was bread and milk. It didn’t include shampoo, sanitary towels or toothpaste.

But they had thought of everything. Their kindness had me bowled over. I was emotional. I had been running from one court hearing to another. From one lawyer’s meeting to another. I couldn’t stop to take stock of my life.

They had put everything in bags that were from local supermarkets so I wouldn’t be ashamed to walk the streets with them.

They thought of everything. They told me to come back again whenever I needed. I told myself I’d do whatever I could to never have to be that desperate to have to go.

I ran out of there in tears but feeling lighter than I had the days before that. Sadly I did have to return several more times till I got myself back on my feet.

For the first time ever I spoke about this to someone just 2 nights ago and I realised how far I’ve come since those days.

He told me I should be so proud of myself for how strong I’ve been to have dealt with all this and for where I am now.

And I realised that rather than be ashamed by this part of my journey of leaving my cult, I should share it with others so that other people going through similar things know myself and others were there too.

And more importantly, that 4/5 years down the line I’m independent and standing on my own two feet and financially stable.

I never imagined I’d be at this place but I am. And you can be too. It takes time but you’ll get there. Just like I did.

It’s best to Live with Understanding rather than Bitterness

A question was raised today about ex Jews using OTD groups which inevitably mean we must identify as Jewish, which in fact we don’t.

Many of us use these groups almost as a support group for ex cult members. It’s a place we can talk about our experiences without being judged and having to explain the nuances of that existence.

I’m fortunate that I’m several years into my journey, that I can look at religious Jews (or other religious people) without bitterness, anger or hatred.

Many of us who had our kids kidnapped by the cult and yet now are so disassociated from it we can look at it differently. I know I look at them with understanding as I was once there and I try to remember the brainwashed mindset that makes this kind of abhorrent act okay.

In no way does it justify what they did to me and countless others. It just means I try to look at it from their perspective and the way they are taught to treat people like me.

Living with bitterness or anger towards others, regardless of who they are, will affect your life and your mental health. And one has to consider oneself first.

So I have chosen to live with inner peace and calm rather than constant anger or bitterness. I know that there are people who will read this and say “it’s okay for her to talk. She got her daughter back eventually” and they’re right.

I cannot possibly talk for those who are still battling this terrible injustice and who are living a life which is a living nightmare.

I can only talk from my own point of view.