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I have lived for 41 years.
When I look back to the first 18 or so, I think, “Wow. I was an asshole kid at times.”
I don’t remember a lot of it. But what I do remember, I place in one of two categories:
1. The loving, kind kid
2. The asshole kid
The first is, of course, full of joyful moments. I had two dedicated parents who gave raising me their all. They did the best they knew how, and I am appreciative of their guidance and lessons. They supported anything I wanted to try growing up—ballet, showing horses, softball, track, cheerleading, travel. They always encouraged me and helped me believe I could do what I wanted.
The second is full of moments of me being super bossy, not performing well in school, gossiping, being difficult at doctor and dentist appointments, talking back, ignoring requests, and having moments of all-around rude or inappropriate behavior. Once I wrote an overly sexualized poem with explicit sexual language. A friend’s mom found it, and I was forbidden to go to their house. I am not sure my parents ever knew about that.
As supportive and loving as they were, I don’t perceive that I experienced secure attachment. I was emotional and anxious. Our discussions stayed pretty surface. My mom grew up in a home with five brothers, and a mom who had a strong personality: she was straightforward and didn’t “beat around the bush” so to speak. My mom was also that way.
Because my childhood recollections were minimal, I was nudged to do some soul digging in my late 20s. Fun fact, to quote Ele-writer Janis Isaman, it takes people on average 20 years to address a Big T (trauma).
Old memories began appearing like small flashcards of images that would emerge in my mind. I would remember the feeling of forced pressure and get flashes of being held down. Then I started to see other faces appear. Slowly and over time, the whole scene presented itself to me.
I realized I had experienced COCSA, which stands for Child on Child Sexual Abuse. Because I never experienced “penetration,” I downplayed it in my mind as child’s play. Then I shut it down for many years, and I didn’t remember nor recall any of it until therapy sessions several years later.
At age 41, I am only now understanding how it affected me. I was able to recall the scene in my mind—my legs held open and forced down, arms and hands covering my face, as I stare through my fingers at the brown wood bottom of the top bunk above me, wishing it would crash down. Feelings of disgust came over my young, vulnerable body, feeling my bathing suit bottoms ripped away.
I realize my asshole kid memories were symptoms in my childhood that I never understood were signs of sexual abuse:
>> Bossiness, ignoring requests, talking back = fear of losing control
>> Not performing well in school = distracted
>> Gossiping = low self-esteem
>> Being difficult at any doctor’s appointment = oversensitivity of blood, even the most minor bodily harm like a scratch
Other signs appeared, but I had no idea they could signal sexual abuse—pants wetting, disordered eating, anxiety, numbness, depression.
Later in life, I experienced dissociative patterns, and relationship challenges, pushing people away. I also went through the guilt, shame, blame, disgust cycle.
I was hurt. And I was a total asshole.
So when I say, I was an asshole kid, I was. And I am sorry.
I am sorry to the little girl in me who was wounded. I am so very sorry that I couldn’t do more to protect her, that I couldn’t stand up and push that person off her, and I am so sorry she had to go through what she did. I love her to the depths of my soul, and I want her to know that.
I wish I could have given her so much more than I was able to. And I let her know that. I let her know I love her, I ask for her forgiveness, show her so much damn appreciation, and…I let her know she wasn’t an asshole kid—she only acted like one.
While it’s still something I am working through, I have found a lot of peace since my initial recollection.
When my realization caught up with my body, western medicine couldn’t identify the source, and I was then guided to more holistic subtle energy practices. I tried everything: Astrology, Acupuncture, Healing Touch, Feng Shui, Reiki, Energy Codes®, psychotherapy, trauma therapy, the list goes on.
There wasn’t one specific magic fix. It has been a combination of many approaches and tools, which is why I find many certifications on my resume, including Feng Shui, Spiritual Counseling, Medical Intuition, Subtle Energy Medicine, and now, Energy Codes®.
While I have shared my complete forgiveness process before, one tool I have also used is connecting with my inner child and loving on her. While I am not inferring this will “cure” or “heal,” I want to share this practice with anyone who may feel called.
It’s a short guided meditation into safety and love, connecting us with our higher selves in an unfolding journey into inner-child presence. The process supports a path of awareness and empathy: inner child meditation.
It has been a potent tool for my journey, and I have heard from clients that it has helped them to dive deeper into compassion, acceptance, forgiveness, and awareness.
If you do try, I would love to know how it resonates for you.
In closing, I apologize to the people I hurt. Hurt people, hurt people, and I am sorry to those I bossed around, gossiped with and about, and I am sorry to anyone I mistreated.
May my share offer a different perspective to my asshole kid ways, or maybe bring new awareness to a kiddo acting out in your life.