Meeresbande Zine #1 S.42 – S.45 Owning the body
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This is not easy to read, I fear, so take good care of yourself while reading it. It was mostly written by Poeple who usually don’t show themselves much to the outer world.
Owning the body
It is hard for us to call it „my“ or „our“ body. It is a filthy and dangerous thing that most of us don’t want to touch, feel or be part of. Most of us are really happy to be dissociated from – that thing – so much that they don’t have to feel its presence at all most of the time.
We sometimes say: „We are several people living in just one body“, but we actually FEEL like many people NOT living in any body at all, not really connected to it at all. If we are connected to it, it is through pain. That is the Truth for the vast majority of us. We are only connected to that thing through unbearable pain. We are only connected to the outer world through unbearable pain (and painful feelings like fear, shame, guilt, confusion, abandonment).
Until very recently it was like this: All of us except for a few „everyday-People“ were suppressed deep to the unconscious where we led a very muted shadow-life, we were not conscious of our existence, for some of us it was even like non-existance. It was dark gray or deep black. We could not lead anything worth calling a life and we could not communicate with each other, help each other. Only very few could do that and they used their possibilities to fight for survival (of the body AND souls) and for the possibility of a better life in the future. They knew the Truth (at least to some degree): That it was not right what was happening, that it did happen and that it was not our fault it was happening.
But most of us were deep down in a kind of stasis – some are even until today in that state. For most of us the only – ONLY – exception was, when we came to the surface (when we „controlled“ the body, experienced what it experienced) at least to some degree. We were not allowed to do that in any other circumstances but certain traumatic situations. The perpetrators punished us severely if we came out to the surface without these circumstances, so some of us soon learned to distinguish these circumstances and they watched over the rest of us and made sure we did not „cross the line“. That had the consequence that most of us NEVER had ANY chance at all to experience (or even know of the possibility of) ANY non-traumatic situations. Most or us have/had very specific „functions“/“tasks“ and according skills. For example one girl watched every night and listened for footsteps and anotherone of us doesn’t feel pain or fear. So these People know nothing of anything else. They have never seen the sky, eaten an apple or sat down on a couch to relax. They did not know Leona’s friends. They did not know that a world outside their specific torture chamber did exist. They also did not know of other torture chambers (at least most of us, most of the time), so that the one who were raped by the „father“ did not know of other perpetrators and vice versa. This is probably the reason that one girl tried to get help from the „mother“ at about age 3-5 and begged her to stop our „daddy“ – not knowing that this woman was just as cruel and raped us, too, like her husband.
So we never made the experience that the body was ours. It was in the hands of rapists and torturers ALL THE TIME WITHOUT ANY EXCEPTION to the experience or most of us. The only exception are the few „everyday-People“ and probably the ones who regulate our system (for example those who prevent us from switching Personalities in the „wrong“ moments or the one who manages memories), though the latter never really had any experiences of the body whatsoever, they only knew that there were less-traumatic situations (and probably even non-traumatic ones?).
The everyday-People felt at home in the body. They thought they were one happy, intelligent and „good“ girl living a happy normal life with everything they need (including a functioning family) provided for them. They felt and acted like that were true, too.
But it all changes. We don’t know when it began to change. For some the bullying-experience at school at age 13-14 was a major negative turning point, because then the everyday-People were confronted with cruelty, emotional violence, rejection and crazy-making lies and for the first time really had to face not only these problem, but also the utter lack of meaningful help or consolation. It brought us close to a total breakdown and overburdened some of our coping mechnisms as a system. But when we were put in another class without bullying, we rebuild our previous coping mechanisms. The everyday-People remained severely shaken and scarred, though.
Now we are awakening. At least we hope that is what is happening. Leona learned to know and strenghten her/our true Self during the last 5 years and also learned how to communicate with „Parts“ – and now the true Self is VERY strong and Leona’s ability to communicate within AND without is developped to a degree that real connection is possible more and more often.
Some of us have had the Possibility to make new experiences, to discover new – and very beautiful! – aspects of Reality, to let go of their old tasks if these were destructive. Some changed their whole world-view and sense/perception of identity (which we had to do over and over during the last 5 years). Some are no longer victims, others are no longer „perpetrators“ – though some of us still have one of these identities and cling to them. It feels like dying or even worse to have to let go of an old identity – even if it was the identity of a „powerless victim“ or a perpetrator. But we can do it, many have already done it and we don’t die, ON THE CONTRARY: We can only then fully live our Truths!!! It is such a great experience to get closer to Reality: To the Reality of the outer world, of Life itself and to our own real Personality, our own Feelings, Needs, Wishes, Qualities and Abilities. It is like escaping a cage that once seemed to be the whole world…
Still we don’t really feel connected to the body. A few of us can feel quite comfortable, even enjoy it (like eating, dancing, singing, using the senses etc), but they don’t experience it as „THEIR“ body. It seems to be something that links us to the outer World. But we don’t really know who of us „owns“ it or rather who can and wants to represent the body and its needs to the inside world and whom the body represents to the outside world. It does not seem to represent any one of us, really, not even Leona or Johanna (who got disconnected from it since the bullying experience).
Does there have to be ONE Person with this kind of connection to the body? Can several people have that Role? Can they divide the „task“ between them? But then the Body would not be one, would not be whole… And some of us think that would be important. Leona likes the Body and wants to fulfill its needs and wants to experience it fully. But she can not often do that. Traumatic memories and the dissociative consequences of our past (which she is aware of more and more and so has to feel the consequences more and more) make it hard for her; also some inner Persons try to communicate to her and/or punish her through dissociation from the Body. The Body does not even look like Leona. How is it possible that the body does not look like our true Self?
Many of us hold the FIRM belief that it is dangerous and threatening to even try to connect to the Body. They say things like: „It is a filthy pile of Dirt!!! It has never helped us in the slightest! On the contrary, it has only and always caused us pain, shame and humiliation. It has betrayed us. It is painful to even admit its existance. I don’t want it!!! I don’t want to have ANYTHING to do with it!!! I don’t want to be reminded of its existance!!! I don’t want to care for its so-called „needs“ – it is a greedy, filthy, shameful thing. I wish it were gone!!!“
The ones who say these sorts of things are always living more in the past than in the present, they don’t see the Reality of our outer Life as it is now and they most likely still cling to old identities which are not their true Selves – still this attitude dominates our connection to the body.
I think every one of us has a true Self and Leona is the true Self of our System as a Whole.
We now want to let as many inner People as possible know of our present reality – that we are safe in the outer world and that we can create inner safety, too (although that is harder to achieve). We want to let every one who wants to, go outside and get to know the Beauties of the outside World and interact with it.
We want to create imaginery places inside so that we all have a home, a safe place, a place for meetings, a Place of Silence and a place where we can ask for help. We need these Places as an inner image so that we can handle the fact that we are many People. It is too confusing without such a reference point, an inner landscape. Thus we hopefully can find our Places inside the system and modify them if we want to. Besides, these imaginations can help a lot to make People feel better, to calm us down or comfort us and they are especially important for the children.
We need a new mirror – one that shows us as human beings!