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August 12, 2020

A Letter to Your Inner Child, Still Trapped in a Dysfunctional Home

We may not have time to go back to the very beginning, and way may not reveal all the details, but certain things stay with you forever. If you are reading this, you know what those things are for you. Sometimes those memories are quite vivid, and other times not so much. Sometimes it feels like all those years were a dream, they didn’t really happen – did they? Maybe I am remembering them wrong.  And when those memories or reminders, behaviors, habits or hyper-vigilance seems just too heavy to carry, too exhausting, too big to reveal, too daunting to “work on” or “fix”, remember this – you are out, you are safe, and you are free.

Dear Inner Child,

You don’t have to double-check all the locks on the doors anymore. No one is going to come harm you in the middle of the night, I know you are scared and confused but it’s okay. You have your own home now; it is bright and messy and cluttered at times, but it is yours! Just enjoy it. I know you’re scared of running out of things, or making a mess, tracking in mud, scratching the table, using the wrong dish towel or getting water outside the tub but you don’t have to worry about that now.

You don’t have to check and memorize all the exits when you go to a store or out to dinner anymore. Be aware of your surroundings, but you don’t have to repeatedly check if someone is behind you or following you. You don’t have to sit in the corner so you can see everyone in the room anymore, you don’t have to plan your escape or obsessively listen for changes in sounds and tones. I know you’re frightened, but it’s okay.

You don’t have to control everything anymore. You don’t have to memorize your notes for that meeting, you can make a mistake, you can stumble over your words, you can not know the answer to a question. You can surrender to the outcome, even if it’s not perfect. I know you’re scared, but it’s okay.

You have lived your life in panic and terror, but you can let go of that now. You have gotten out, you have survived, you have flourished in the face of adversity while all statistics told you that you would fail, and that you would die. You are an example, a role model, a leader, a professional, a friend and a wife. I know you didn’t know this then, but know this now, you can be and do anything on this earth. Live passionately and without fear little girl – because you are free!

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