Creative Spirit; the Gifts of Disassociation

When one is part of a group under the same accord, energy is shared and magnified, life can be easier.  Even when there are disagreements, wounds and misunderstandings, the group flow still persists with love. My mother raised me to be “in the world but not of world” and that’s how I lived my life, somewhere in between.  She was speaking in spiritual terms, the principle applies to how I interacted with others except I embodied a deep separateness that isolated me.  I was your typical teenager that felt misunderstood compounded with a higher than average sense of low self worth that quickly pathologized into a superiority complex.  I became the “observer” of humans and their interactions.   I was there solely present to observe, collect data and sometimes experiment.  I wasn’t a part of, I was alien.  My home became the periphery.

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This is digital new media art created for the Facebook page @narrativeoftheredstring.  Created by artist Nataki Bhatti, she uses the online format to instigate and process  creative healing practice.

What I didn’t realize is this positioning and superiority was a very deep self-rejection and seeped isolation, one of the major symptoms of my brain injury. (Midlife I acquired some congruent diagnosis; PTSD, depression, anxiety, addiction all in varying degrees of the spectrum.  Had I not suffered consequences, I probably would have lived my life undiagnosed.  While some may view such as a disability, I call it what it is today… a brain injury.) A silenced teenager, I sat in corners alone, walked the streets at night, lived on the periphery of the subterranean terrordome (a word termed by Public Enemy to describe the inescapable cycles of poverty, violence, oppression in the inner city)  of my ghetto life.

Trauma and violence greatly affected my life.  For many years, I blamed poverty, emotional abuse, the systems of racism, the misogyny that condoned my victimization, all of which I endured when I should have been skipping, laughing, picking flowers, imagining, experiencing a childhood.  What I have come to now understand is what injured me wasn’t the fact that I endured trauma.  The injury stemmed from me experiencing trauma, then telling no one!  I learned to hurt alone.  I practiced keeping darks secrets.  Secrets and hurt formed the first layers of separation, disguised as superiority.  Retrospectively, I can identify how disassociation fostered various distance between myself and others, affected by my perception of my connectedness.

Today, there is still a protective layer that protects my core self.  I am very aware of this feeling place, the place where I keep the keys to my inner life and I experience what I am in the moment.   The in-between space takes a great effort to transverse before moving into being present with my outer reality.  I have to work to connect with others and my environment.  It seems like I am always talking about this in between space.  Well, it is where whales sing their songs, the great abyss of disassociation.  You and I sitting next to each other on a couch talking. You speak calmly with assuredness, I look calm but I am screaming from far away, what you hear is my echo.

The eloquent echo of my inner life can come dressed in many expressions of you.  I have learned that I have many gifts because of my brain injury.  I can easily assume your feelings belong to me, and now I have learned the difference.  Understanding this difference allows me to use an internal compassion to position my feelings so you can see yourself more clearly.  Emotional balance is a lot of work, and I have spiritual help of lightwork and meditation to manage my feelings.  When I have balance, I feel such a deep inspiration that I can only describe as vastness.  I become my own windtunnel of beautifully synchronized movements.  I become wind.  Within this wind birthed my creative spirit that is espoused in everyway I express myself: written words, spoken words, hands creating crafts, my soul painting and my heart writing are all expressive forms of disassociation that characterize me as an artist.

When I speak it is a form of poetry.  When I write, I am documenting, charting and organizing memory.  When I illustrate or paint, my soul opens and codes my sub and superconscious.  When I create with my hands, I am praying into the crochet, sewing, weaving; binding with my hands my daily needs.  My imagination governs my written and spoken words.  My intuition controls the realms of my painting.  And my ancestry deeply influences the workings of my hands.  Vast internal winds birth my creative spirit which is the how and why I live my life. In all my ways, I live to create.

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