In Breaking Through Silence I recount how uncomfortable I am with claiming mystical connections with spirits though every day the spirits of dead women—and living women —surround me. Well, I’ve outgrown the uncomfortable bit proving that, yes, we oldster women can evolve beyond our training of shame and modesty and stake claim to who we are and what is. As for me, it’s channeling spirit energy, which I am also decent at interpreting. I won’t bore you with the lifelong fits and starts of this pushy, lurking ability. Suffice it to say that when my dead brother walloped me with a gigantic BAM! a year ago, I figured it was time to get serious and learn about what I knew was there waiting, but could never quite touch. I won’t lie, I was looking for razzmatazz! I wanted to leave behind the sad, broken women surrounding me and channel the fun spirit stuff! I wanted to laugh with the dead, just like on television. I wanted to exclaim, “Aunt Tillie say HI! And everything’s great! And oh, I buried my diamond ring by the oak tree and it’s yours!” That’s not how it worked for me.
My mystical path has been intensely serious and profoundly informative—and transformative. Though it’s had its amazing moments of sheer craziness, I’ve experienced phenomena I never knew existed. Once I decided to actually listen to its callings I was, and continue to be, humbled by the powerful, instructive nature of spirit and its insistence on being heard.
Four years ago I embarked on writing my mother’s story. Before I knew it, I’d written 200 pages of glib, satirical prose. It was all about me, written in my voice. Two hundred pages of chronicling my mother through my hurting eyes. On August 18, 2010, I wrote in my journal, Writing the story of my mother is like trying to break through a boulder with my fists. Her silence is absolute. Impenetrable. I railed at Spirit that she’s impenetrable. Even in my memory. Spirit responded as it usually does--calmly: The clues are all there.
When I was interrupted by the call to put into book form (Breaking Through Silence) the perspectives on sexual violence that saved my life, I set my mom’s story aside. By the time I revisited it a couple of months ago, I’d developed the skill of listening to what I did not want to hear and had learned to honor the voice struggling to be heard, in spite of my prejudice, attitude, and lingering anger. When I picked up my mother’s story to resume writing, I was ready to listen to her. I was ready to hear her.
Again and again I hear women say, I just want to be heard. We all want to be heard. We all need to be heard. Being heard connects us with our deepest selves. Being heard connects us to the voice of our souls. Being heard connects us with our purpose so that we can fully live that purpose. If we are not heard, if we do not even hear ourselves, we cannot begin to evolve into who we are truly meant to be.
Phil’s been doing the radio talk show circuit in support of our mission and Breaking Through Silence. Two weeks ago during an interview, in an incredible act of personal courage, a gentleman of public recognition revealed for the very first time that he’d been raped twice. In speaking out about such agonizing sufferings, this valiant man touched the hearts and spirits of countless others in a way that his profession as a presence in the pages of magazines never could. He opened up a path to understanding and resolution for himself and other victims of sexual violence. He chose to speak. He was heard.
It does not take a mystic to see and hear the clues all around us. Victims of abuse, of sexual violence scatter clues everywhere. The clues are available to be read and interpreted. We all can learn about the devastating, lasting legacy of abuse. We can listen without judgment. We can allow others to be heard. We can champion the voices of victims, young and old. Through connecting with truth, we can begin to understand. Through our understanding perhaps victims of hidden trauma can begin to understand themselves. Understanding leads to resolution. And resolution leads to liberation from the stranglehold abuse trauma has on its victims.
You don’t need a mystic to reveal that the burden of sexual trauma can be lifted or that freedom waits in your future. But you will need a mystic if you wait to speak until you pass over. Then, I’m sorry to say, you will have to get in line. Like the television psychics, I have a long waiting list. Beautiful, sad dead women surround me, waiting for an opportunity to speak, to be heard. I do my best, but the line is getting longer.
Which reminds me, Aunt Tillie told me to tell you that she’s changed her mind about giving you the ring. Don’t yell at me. I’m just the messenger.