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#339767 - 09/07/10 07:34 AM Encroachments
earlybird Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/17/10
Posts: 1007
Loc: WA USA
Yesterday Ė I screwed up! Itís not the first time and like many others, Iím likely to mess up again, real soon. What makes this blunder different than most is that I learned something valuable about myself. (Now, if I could just hang on to this new revelation)

I have a flower bed that sets in the corner of my yard protected on two sides by a fence. A small ornamental tree is the featured decoration with a number of other smaller plants and flowers as its backdrop. My lawn grows up and under the ground covering. The two make for a lovely combination. The problem is that the grass tends to work itself further into the flower bed than I want and then grows through and towers over the lower larger leafed ground cover. Nothing new about this issue I, along with many other idiot yard people, deal with managing encroaching plants every weekend.

For those smarter people who donít have flower beds, maintaining them this is different than pulling weeds. In plucking weeds there is no dividing line to maintain. There is no decision as to which to leave and which to pull. Unlike weeds in this particular situation Iíve been the planter of all these living growing things. I love the beauty they give me. I simply wish they Ďd be more cooperative and stay in their designated areas.

I started my usual pulling of the grass. The undergrowth that I want to keep is very delicate and dense so there are no tools or easy fix. Just hand pulling. I began the task by reaching between the plants I wanted and working my way down the stock of the grass so I could pull it out roots and all. This is a slow and tedious project one I normally donít mind. But yesterday I was in a different mood. I didnít want to be doing this and mentally was focused on issues pertaining to my abuse. Not a good combination. After about an hour I realized I may have gotten too aggressive and I was no longer taking concern for the ground cover. I was treating both the intruder and the resident as a big pain in the ass. Sure I got the grass out maybe even better than usual but the destruction to my flower bed was massive. Crushed leaves broken stems and gaping holes was the result. (But the grass was back in its rightful place)

Now, sitting on my lawn gasping at my workmanship I was thinking about how often Iíve done this when working at incorporating my rape. Iíll start out carefully reaching deep into my thoughts and like a surgeon try to extract some awful self belief I may be carrying. Sometimes I find that the roots are running deeper than I thought and turn to more drastic measures. In the process if (well more honestly said) when I become frustrated I end up being more like an elephant than a surgeon. It works, kinda, but the destruction of my innards is massive. Like the flowers and the grass they will grow back and fill in my mistakes I only hope Iíll learn more each time I fail like I did yesterday.




Edited by earlybird (09/07/10 07:36 AM)
_________________________
Balanced (My goal)

There is symmetry
In self-reflection
Life exemplified
Grace personified

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#339771 - 09/07/10 10:19 AM Re: Encroachments [Re: earlybird]
Ever-fixed Mark Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/02/10
Posts: 729
Loc: United States
Sometimes we are so focused on the problem that we can be ungentle with ourselves. Learning to be mindful that doing one thing physically we are emotionally doing another is a difficult thing.

I've seen your garden, and while the injury to these plants is worthy of your concern, it is the whole garden you must step back and consider, and not the one piece that just repelled an invader.

Isn't it amazing that something so beautiful and peaceful can flourish in a place so hostile to it's nature?

-efm

_________________________

Everybody here's got a story to tell
Everybody's been through their own hell
There's nothing too special about getting hurt
Getting over it, that takes the work

- "Duck and Cover" by Glen Phillips

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#339780 - 09/07/10 01:00 PM Re: Encroachments [Re: earlybird]
CruxFidelis Offline


Registered: 06/16/10
Posts: 486
Loc: NJ
Dude, you sound really serious about your yardwork. Your wife must love you smile

I am glad that you can recognize that there are some good things growing inside of you alongside the weeds and the snails. Even the most beautiful gardens in the world still have pests, but being serious about your recovery & facing your fears head-on will turn you into the master gardener you need to be. We all slip up now and then and let our frustration and anger get the best of us, but the only true failure is not getting up after we fall.

_________________________
ďIf a man wishes to be sure of the road he treads on, he must close his eyes and walk in the dark.Ē

- Saint John of the Cross

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#339785 - 09/07/10 01:33 PM Re: Encroachments [Re: CruxFidelis]
sono Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/19/09
Posts: 1069
Earl,

It sounds like you've had a striking physical manifestation of some of the anger or other emotions which live within you. I think it might be interesting maybe to work on what got you going...i.e. What exactly were you thinking of when you found yourself triggered in this way.

Kevin

_________________________
the family
the perp

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#339804 - 09/07/10 06:27 PM Re: Encroachments [Re: sono]
EGL Offline
Moderator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 06/19/04
Posts: 7821
Hi earlybird,

Your post made me thing of the ways we cope sometimes with the issues that are boiling inside us from the abuse. I know I did some wreckless, destructive things that I know was in reaction to the real things that were going on underneath the surface. Kind of like pulling the weeds willy-nilly because that was the easy way out for me, rather than facing the problem head on and dealing with it the way it needed to be dealt with.

_________________________
Eddie

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#339811 - 09/07/10 08:35 PM Re: Encroachments [Re: EGL]
prisonerID Offline
Greeter Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/17/08
Posts: 1247
Loc: Oklahoma
In my twenty years of dealing and not dealing, recovering and not-so-recovering I have done damage to myself and others while working on my issues. In desperation sometimes I did all or nothing approaches and made rash decisions when my emotions led my actions.

Sometimes I intentionally harmed myself and others but sometimes it was without realization in my efforts to get through certain issues connected with my assault. Kind of like preferring to burn the house down rather than clean it.

_________________________
Broad statements often miss their true mark.

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#339824 - 09/08/10 01:08 AM Re: Encroachments [Re: sono]
earlybird Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/17/10
Posts: 1007
Loc: WA USA
Thanks to everyone for adding to this post. I see so much of me in each one of them. I also appreciate the wisdom in the advice given.

Sono, you asked a very straight forward question. Iíll try to give an equally straight answer. I was in a deep internal battle with my fear of rejection. I donít feel rejected when someone disagrees or even if they call me an asshole (been done here). It actually lets me know that the person at least values me enough to respond. But what I fear the most is silence. I have more poems on this subject than any other and they are woeful in nature. So when I went out to begin pulling the grass out of my flower bed I was in an internal fight trying to figure out what the hell was wrong with me. Why do I perceive silence as rejection?

Some may say arrogant. Maybe?

Some may think Iím insecure? Not in most things but here yep put a check in that box.

Others have suggested I crave attention. Hummm, okay Iíll wear that shirt.

So as I battled with these opposing personal observations both external and internal while simultaneously tearing out of the grass I got more aggressive. Whatís the answer? I donít know. I guess it is either for me to try to be honest or shut up. Thatís where the groundcover took the real beating. Earl

_________________________
Balanced (My goal)

There is symmetry
In self-reflection
Life exemplified
Grace personified

Top
#339828 - 09/08/10 03:30 AM Re: Encroachments [Re: earlybird]
sono Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/19/09
Posts: 1069
Earl,

Fascinating...ok...so as Simon and Garfunkle said, it's the sounds of silence which created this situation the other day, and you say that is the worst. If you try and trace back feelings like this, silence, no reaction, no answer, rejection etc. where do they lead you? When were you waiting for a response, an answer etc. and got nothing? Were you a child, an adult, and so on...i'm not saying this exercise will produce any life changing results, but I do enjoy and find beneficial the task of trying to trace these things back to their roots.

Kevin

(although you CAN call me sono if you like - I could create a whole scenario that by calling me sono again after months of using my real name Kevin, that you're sending me a message, but I know that's not the case...I think...)

_________________________
the family
the perp

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#339834 - 09/08/10 07:53 AM Re: Encroachments [Re: sono]
earlybird Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/17/10
Posts: 1007
Loc: WA USA
ďWhen were you waiting for a responseĒ

Kevin, (sorry about the use of Sono)

Iím trying to break the habit of using peopleís names on the open thread. I had someone point out to me that I had used another manís name on the open thread that used only his MS name. Though I had been given permission to do so I realized that some saw that and thought that I was divulging info without thought therefore I might be seen as not trust worthy. So Iíve tried to go back to using peoples MS names. Iím bad at doing it because I keep going back and forth. So nothing meant by it. Youíve been very kind and honest with me. I like the fact that you trusted me enough to point stuff like that out.

Okay to your question. I can trace it back to the night of and the following days after being raped. I try to cry out for help and no one came. No one heard me. This was no oneís fault, well except the two men. Then I went silent. Oh, I told people, but not in any direct way. There was no way that anyone could have guessed but I was saying and doing things that sent messages and no one knew to hear.

Iíve spent a life time making my world smaller. Making me smaller. Relocating myself in a places where I donít have nearly the amount of people around me. Donít belong to any groups, originations, churches or clubs. Male Survivor is the first time in twenty years that Iíve tried to participate in a group endeavor. I started out reading and involving myself in nearly every forum. As time went on it became necessary, in my head, to slowly withdraw. Making myself smaller and smaller. Now Iím left with only two forums, the poetry section and the ASA forum. There is more but Iíll PM you. Thanks for caring enough to ask.

_________________________
Balanced (My goal)

There is symmetry
In self-reflection
Life exemplified
Grace personified

Top
#339854 - 09/08/10 12:41 PM Re: Encroachments [Re: earlybird]
CruxFidelis Offline


Registered: 06/16/10
Posts: 486
Loc: NJ
Earl, I can relate.

After my sexual assault, I went silent and in the midst of that silence, my body and my soul cried for help even though my mind was trying desperately to shut them the $(#)@(# up. And yeah, when we relocated, my wife made tons of contacts with community organizations, church, her company, pregnancy & breastfeeding groups (the list really goes on and on...) and I spend my days reading books, surfing here on MS and watching Wonder Years re-runs until Daniel Stern starts narrating my deepest innermost thoughts.

I can't speak for everyone here, but I know that personally I would be deeply saddened if you went silent forever. Don't let that silence encroach on all the trees and flower beds in your soul.

_________________________
ďIf a man wishes to be sure of the road he treads on, he must close his eyes and walk in the dark.Ē

- Saint John of the Cross

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#339884 - 09/09/10 01:07 AM Re: Encroachments [Re: CruxFidelis]
earlybird Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/17/10
Posts: 1007
Loc: WA USA
Thanks Pete,

I can't see me going silent ever again. Thank you for encouraging me not to. The problem is I don't know my proper balance or role here at MS. I hope to find it over time.

_________________________
Balanced (My goal)

There is symmetry
In self-reflection
Life exemplified
Grace personified

Top
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