Beginning a painful narrative

Lately I have started to feel like I will never be ‘stable’ enough to deal with my trauma and all that’s tied into it. But I came across a beautiful old photograph of myself and my little sister and it sparked me to write. I thought, this is a starting place, a point to begin the narrative.

I wrote in the first person, as though I were a small child telling the story. I wrote the good memories first. Camping trips. Running riot in the woods. Contentedly caring for pets. Sweet gestures and days on the beach.

As I wrote, an old forgotten innocence started to rise in me. I wanted to drown it, to deny how real those memories were because it feels easier to remember in monochrome. There’s a devastating conflict in wanting to embrace that happiness, to catch hold of that pure, childish joy. I just can’t untangle it from the agony of its untimely ending.

I wanted to swallow the good stuff down. I wanted to forget everything that was taken from me. To force that free-spirited girl back into the depths. Because without the contrast, without the brightness of those days, the awful shadows are just that bit easier to tolerate.


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