I really don’t know what to say, yesterday was super fucking difficult. Like one day I’m doing okay and the next day I am dragged back into the pit of the dark room where I was kept, and abused and I come back to myself, so to speak, and I am supposed to just….be okay.

But I’m not.

I am watching the morning news today, and there’s a man from Richmond BC who decided to attack staff at a local McDonalds, he decided to trash the place before attacking police officers, and was incredibly violent and part of me thinks I understand that.

I remember and will never forget having the panic attack that got me arrested the rude, racist cops aside, I remember thinking “this is it, you can pretend to be okay, or you can let it out,” and I knew if I didn’t let it out I was going to be in danger, and so I let it out, and while it wasn’t the best way I also knew that I really didn’t have control over my emotions at the time.

I know what it feels like to lose control, but the one thing that I also remember is that I had the whatever the fuck it is to remain as calm as I possibly could, and I chose not to get violent.

I didn’t get violent, I didn’t hit anyone, I yelled, I screamed, I spoke calmly, sometimes all at once, but I didn’t get violent, which means that it is possible to have a panic attack, a freak out, a psychotic break, and not get violent, but what makes me different from those who do get violent?

I don’t have an answer to that question, it’s super easy to say that it’s a choice, but that belief usually comes from people who don’t get violent, but each of us, every human on this planet, has a threshold. Once we’ve reached the point of no return, sometimes we cannot stop ourselves from losing control.

There are ways of course that we can mitigate some of the damages, like practicing our breathing, doing yoga exercises, working out, going to spend time in nature, but in the heat of the moment when we “lose our cool,” sometimes those things just don’t work.

Internally we’re crying because people on the outside don’t understand the pressure that we’re under and we really want them to but no matter what we’re experiencing, they tell us there is no excuse to “behave that way” meanwhile then they turn around and say that we don’t fully understand how the brain works.

Over the years I have gone over and over again what happened four years ago when I had a panic attack on an airplane, and in Downtown Vancouver, and I believe truly that I reached my point of no return.

I had been holding on to so much for so damned long, and I just couldn’t do it anymore, I just couldn’t sit there for one more moment and pretend that everything was okay, when I knew that I was coming home to a province filled with rapists and pedophiles, who had gotten away with what they had done to me and others, for more than twenty-five years.

I was scared, and I needed someone to know that I was scared, I needed someone to hug me and tell me that it was all going to be okay, and as per usual in my life, that person ended up being myself.

For the last four years I’ve been focusing on dealing with my trauma, and today of all days I just want to “not” focus on my trauma. I want to step aside from the shit storm and focus on my writing, so I’ve decided to join a writers group where I can talk to other writers about plot design, fiction writing, and all the ins and outs of being a writer.

I really want to do NanoWrimo this year and I want to finish my second book before the end of the year, as much as I want it to be fiction I really want it to be my 2nd nonfiction book and I want to gear it towards professionals dealing with mental health patients, I just don’t quite know what to say, or how to say it, and that’s the frustrating part.

Trying to organize my thoughts sometimes like many of you can understand is really difficult. There’s a lot of stuff on my plate, emotionally speaking, and as much as I want to shove everything off and just focus on my writing, unfortunately, there are a lot of people who want me to focus on the negative.

“Well you can’t heal until you deal with the past,” except what if we just want to move on? What if I’m ready to start planning, plotting, and thinking about my future, instead of being surrounded by, and abused by, my past memories?

There’s this part of me that keeps saying “stop asking for permission,” but when you’ve been trained through sexual trauma and abuse to do exactly that from early childhood, it’s really difficult to break the cycle on your own.

However, like many people who have experienced extreme trauma, I have a hard time trusting that anyone in the world has my best interests at heart, when so many people in my past have deliberately chosen to let me down, because it was easier or more conducive to what they needed or wanted.

Yeah, I know what it’s like to lose your cool, to feel like you are drowning, to feel like everyone in the world has turned their back on you, but I also know that no matter how dark the shit storm might be, you can get through it and no it’s not about hard work and effort.

It’s about making sure that you know what your line is, and doing the work so that you never have to cross it, and maybe that means cutting people out of your life, maybe that means finding new ways to express yourself, maybe that means screaming at the top of your lungs until your heart feels like it is finally being heard, but it absolutely doesn’t mean picking up a gun and causing harm just because you’re feeling bad.

That’s the difference between us and them, we’re hurting and we want people to know we’re hurting, but not at the deliberate risk of hurting others around us, just so that we can feel better.

At least, I think that’s the difference.

How’s that for random Thursday thoughts?

Sending all my love,

Devon J Hall


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