My earliest memory is one of when I was still young enough to be in a crib. The memory is more like a reoccurring dream, yet it was real and confirmed to me after finally asking if such a memory could be true. My father assured me it was, and for me, it explained a lot.
I was wet, hungry and tired. Tired of yelling, screaming and begging for someone to come to me. My frustration was one I had no name for, or understanding of what was causing it, except I needed to be heard. I can still see myself shaking the wooden slats of the crib, holding on to the sides as I jumped and fell over my clumped up sheets. Why was no one coming for me? Why was I alone? Could anyone hear me? I cried for what seemed to be hours wanting my mom to come to me. Somehow, I knew though, at such a young age, that she wouldn’t. I remember this not being the first time, and that it wouldn’t be the last. As I lay there exhausted, covered in tears, and weeping, I saw my father come into the room, lean over to me and pick me up to hold me. It was my father that came to me, not my mom. I don’t remember what happened next. I just remember relief.
This early memory is one I have gone back to in my mind many times throughout my life. It’s the beginning of understanding my desperate need and desire to be heard. I know, we all desire to be heard, and I think that it is a natural and healthy desire. But for me, throughout my life, I have really struggled with believing that my thoughts, opinions and ideas didn’t matter. The truth is that I was silenced many times throughout my life either by others, or my own doing, and it has always left me feeling just as I did that morning long ago, in my crib – alone.
I would like to share stories of my life with you, and share with you how my fearful lonely view, through the wooden slats of my crib, has shifted and changed through the years. I would like to share my journey with you of how my loneliest moments have shown me that I am most certainly not alone. Those slats no longer grip me, they have empowered me. It’s taken a long time to get here, but I’m here. My story is not special. It’s probably quite a bit different than yours, but it’s by no means important or more meaningful than any one story out there. I want this to be a place where I can be raw and real, and break down all walls and barriers. If we were sitting face to face, we would be saying, “really”, and “me too” and “can I share something with you?” It would be a time of growth and meaningful conversation, with tears and laughter, anger and regret. We would be real, hopefully, and share our stories together. So here, when I share, please know it is with you in mind, sitting with me, (but behind your screen) living our lives out loud. I want to hear you too. I want to know your desires and needs, hopes and fears. I am not sitting here about to do this, to just tell my story. I want your story to unfold for you, just as mine has for me. I have realized that the first step to healing, is to have a voice. Sometimes though, our voice comes through a pencil, a pen, or a keyboard, long after we wanted or needed to be heard.