I was unable to trust, and kept real distance between myself and other people. And this basic feeling - of being disconnected, and then of wanting to be disconnected - persisted until I found a way to align myself with a spiritual practice that embodied this as spiritual virtue, that put detachment high on the list of desirable qualities.
And I was fine with that detachment except for the feelings of boredom, isolation and loneliness. Except for all the ways I felt disconnected and broken, I was fine. I've carried this idea with me, that this brokenness was a legacy, and that while I could maybe overcome, it would be difficult and painful and take a long time.
But a very dear soul has helped me, in a short period of time, re-frame so much of my own understanding. And more than anything, I realize I'm not some traumatized child, defined only by my past and what I was victim to, but I am an adult, capable of caring for myself, and reaching out and connecting with others, and knowing that sometimes people are trustworthy and sometimes not, and that that is no reflection of me.
I am not stuck in some earlier stage in my life, unable to think or feel clearly, or unable to communicate clearly, or any of it. I am a fully grown woman, who has years and years of experience cultivating good communication and meaningful interaction. And if I'm not always so good at it? Well - that's ok. Very few of us are always good at it. But I don't have to blame it on my distant past or re-traumatize myself with a story that there's only one way I can understand it.
I am a very ordinary human being, with very ordinary requirements, emotionally, physically and spiritually. I need the same kind of love and care and attention as everyone else, and whatever has been in my past doesn't define my present or my future. It did once. It overwhelmed me and overshadowed me and almost destroyed any hope I had of being fully myself.
But I'm not in the place anymore. I don't need it and I don't want it, and I have no romance or sentimentality or nostalgia about it. I was there. But now I'm here, and this is where I belong. Because my life is bigger than my past, and G*d has a purpose for my future. Not everything is going to work out the way I imagined or even hoped. Not everything is going to unfold as I expect or plan. But it's all going to be fine anyway. And I'm going to be more than fine. In fact, I already am.