Sunday, 22 February 2015
Keeping it simple !
I am saddened by all of the divisive fighting that has occurred between survivors over this wretched Government "enquiry". There are damaged people battling with equally damaged people over who said what to whom and and who is "right."
When actually it is all so complex there can be no "right" way. There is bitterness and "hostage taking" and a lot of pain.
It was ever thus.
And it is one of the very real reasons why this terrible crime has never really been addressed to anybody's satisfaction.
It is instinctive as a survivor to " fight" - that has been one of the dreadful legacies of abuse. We are constantly hyper-vigilant, constantly in fight or flight mode, and often have been so downtrodden that we also get into jostling for pole position.
Over the decades there have been very many "organisations" grown up, and they nearly all suffer the same fate, they implode because of the collective damage of the individuals and each person's (quite understandable) mistrust.
It is one of the things that has kept giving the church a "get out of jail free card", they are canny enough to know that if they stall and deflect long enough, then their victims will destroy themselves without any input from them.When we fight we play right into their hands.
It is also natural for individual survivors to want their OWN voice, that which has been denied them for so long. There can be no such thing as a collective voice, our own voice is what was taken from us in the first place.and so we will fight again to be heard.
It is a dilemma, and it doesn't seem to be abating any time soon, and that is a shame, because it makes survivors appear inadequate , and will perpetuate people's pain even longer.
I am not saying this from any "Ivory tower!" I am quite capable of fighting like a tiger, or even dirty when I am threatened! I STILL have that legacy!
But it NEVER does me any good, I never feel at peace, all I feel is more anger.When I feel that anger coming up into my throat, I have to try and transform it in some way, because it WILL cause me more pain! I don't always manage it- but then I am still a work in progress! I do have choices these days.
I think that is one of the reasons that I feel so very close to my deaf and speech impaired friends in Verona, we can only ever communicate on a very basic level, we don't have a very complicated common language so we never get into "politics" or hidden agendas. All we can do is connect in a beautiful simple way, with our hearts.
When I first heard their stories, I was of course shocked by the crimes committed against them, but what impressed me more than anything was their dignity, their bravery and their HUMOUR!
They joked and bantered with each other and it was infectious.
I never got a great deal of satisfaction out of "demonstrating" in Rome, apart from meeting others who were like minded, the demonstration was a a fruitless effort! No one really listened to any of the speeches, or the words of wisdom, largely because there were so many languages involved, and the words have all been said before.
We didn't get anywhere by meeting with Frederico Lombardi, he didn't hear a word we said and he was there to get some publicity at our expense. But we all smiled at each other as we lit our lanterns, and we sang together to the loud and irreverent music!
The following year we didn't protest at all! We celebrated! and we set off hundreds of chinese lanterns into the sky over Rome and dance with each other in the Piazza Castel Saint Angelo just pleased to reconnect and share a special magical moment.
There is no dignity or gentleness in fighting, there is only more fighting! I for one crave the gentleness that my abuses didn't allow me.
There is a great deal of beauty and value in a simple kind gesture, a hug, a smile, a dance, a hand held.
I am distancing myself from all of the fighting, all of the opinions and the battles, we all know that we have been cruelly treated and unfairly dealt with, but for me, dwelling constantly on that will not allow me any peace.
I will instead, be hoping to connect to my fellow travellers in all of the simple gentle ways that allow me to feel an affinity, and make me smile.