19 thoughts on “In the Shadow

      1. I know Sara I battle this each day. I do not think many could understand how much our knowing of our emotions gets buried in emotional neglect.. Its as if our body and soul and mind is a complete mystery to us… Hugs and love this path is so tough for us living with Complex PTSD and long term abuse issues.

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  1. Wow, terrifying. When first approaching what had been forced to stay within me because that is the ‘norm’ when a child is sexually abused by another family member or friend of the family, I was in my 40’s. And even then it was extremely difficult. My therapist/psychiatrist had me take 30 minutes each day to do some form of art to depict what was still inside of me because no words ever would come to talk about it. It was a sacred half hour.
    One drawing, or painting, had black taloned hands reaching up for me almost exactly like yours. There were other things too; a two headed snake out of clay, a bumpy gross penis- because when a child sees one for the first time too early to see one, they are UGLY and weird.
    It is terrifying to carry such things inside oneself for so many years doing harm to all body systems. After the few months were up, I put it all in a box, painted it black, and at my therapist’s home, I carried it out back and we burned it. Cleansing. It was a start.

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    1. What a powerful and symbolic moment with your therapist to burn those dark creations together. That sounds incredibly cathartic.
      It’s amazing what images come up when there are no words to access. This painting came after I made two failed attempts at a landscape painting yesterday. I was just having an off day and it showed in my painting. It was awful and frustrating. So after trashing those paintings I decided to just see what my paintbrush would say if I let it show me what I was feeling instead. It came quickly, and it made complete sense as soon as it was done. It didn’t make the feeling go away, but it did help to begin to assign words to it.

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