For First Time Visitors
If you are a first time visitor to this blog, I invite you to start from the beginning, especially if you are unfamiliar with the potential emotional impact of long-term child abuse.
Trigger caution to unhealed survivors!
Trigger caution to unhealed survivors!
Understanding the Incomprehensible
Children of incest or long-term sexual abuse grow up to be wounded adults with complicated emotional issues. Unfortunately, some symptoms are misinterpreted or often dismissed as "crazy", only serving to maintain a tormented victim status. We, as a society, have the power to change this dynamic. Each of us can make a difference.
Dec 18, 2008
Insiders disclose precise location
I'm at the point of jumping around to various topics for this blog. Actually, that's more in line with how "stuff" comes up in therapy. The art blog reflects the few images that identified a location for me (including the one shown to the left). It requires some explanation so am using this space for that purpose. A dual-blog post (?). Show and tell.
In my world of art therapy, the more images I had of a place or an alter or an external person, the more prominent it was in my subconscious life. Prominent could mean frequency or intensity of memory. With my military pedophile f*ther, I had memories of several military locations as well as mansions, museums, and other unusual places in my conscious "ordinary" world. My alters seem to know a very upscale wealthy world where consciously I feel extremely uncomfortable. Once I walked into the lobby of The Beverly Hills Hotel just to say I was there. It was so ornate I instantly felt like a pauper and glaringly out of place. Awful feeling. I digress.
Over and over I tore out pictures of building with double chimneys (two single chimneys but spaced a bit of a distance from each other). Then Walter Reed Army Hospital came up in images and internal messages only. No conscious memory. I had so many pictures I started a folder. Buildings with double chimneys, lots of horses, images of big drain pipes, and rollerblading (huh?). The internet became part of my world of answers. I found the photos of Walter Reed and an Annex that was in disarray featured by a group wanting funds to preserve the older part of the property. Strange pictures on that website. One of the annex buildings had two chimneys but I knew it wasn't "my" building. I didn't even know for sure the two chimney building went with Walter Reed. They just went into that file. In looking at the current hospital, nothing "rang a bell" but I did print out a picture of Fire Company #55 that was on the Walter Reed property. You'll see that in the art blog. A quick review: double chimney building, no specific known location but "someone" put it with Walter Reed, and a fire truck in front of the hospital with #55.
Synchronously, I met a woman (K) through my online survivor group who lived in DC. She invited me to join her for a tour of the Annex being given by the restoration society. K had conscious memories of abuse at the Annex and the records to prove it. Anytime a survivor visits a place of abuse, we walk a fine line. We risk totally freaking out but don't want to arouse suspicion by military guards or security in the area. My friend had few dissociated memories and was in control. I thought it would be nice to meet her and my then husband was agreeable to make the drive and wander about with us. The day of the visit I left my folder of images at home. I didn't even think to take a camera.
I met K at her home and met her lovely family. She drove us to the Annex. It was a lovely day to wander. We had much to speak about. She was the first survivor of similar abuse I'd met in person. She knew one building intimately...knowing how she had been brought there, what had been done to her, where it was done, and who had done it. While husband and I pretended to be oblivious, she snuck up the stairs evading the Marine guards and took photos of the door where she had been traumatized on the other side. We were so grateful she wasn't caught and we hadn't been thrown out. I'm the "invisible", "don't make waves" type. Or was. lol. Not true now with these blogs.
Nothing at the Annex set my radar off although I began to feel dizzy and slightly triggered. After we sufficiently wandered the Annex grounds, she offered to drive over to the hospital area. Why not? It was the weekend and she had to drive past three entrances as she went around the block to find the one entrance open that day--the entrance approaching the hospital from the rear.
One building blocked the view until she got past it. A large fence had a very visible sign warning of NO ROLLERBLADING. That was it. I went nuts. My eyes refocused from the sign close up to the double chimneys in the background. I switched to a babbling little pointing to the building. It wasn't a hospital building. Husband identified it as an incinerator building which caused little's screaming. As the car drove around the fenced off area of the hospital toward the incinerator building, I noticed very large metal piping (what I called drainage pipe in my images) around the top and sometimes down the side of the huge structure. I don't recall if it was explained as wastewater, but it was some type of waste being led away from the building. My clues were playing out before my eyes.
I also knew from the images that the building had a window that looked to be glass blocks. I actually like that kind of architectural feature. The closer we got to the incinerator building the more I became the blithering terrified little. I wasn't sure if I was freaking K out, but since she had children of her own, she had reassuring and calming words. The building indeed had a "window" of glass squares--light could get through but no one could see in or out. At the side of the building, a door was open with a small stairway. I won't disclose what I asked but obviously some horrid trauma took place with watching something being incinerated. K offered to take pictures of the building and send them to me. I was so focused on the building, dealing with flashbacks, and noticing what my body was doing and how I sounded, I saw nothing else.
After taking photos, K drove beyond the side of the building. My head stayed fixated on the chimneys and the detail. My images showed the detail of the "circles" that went around the chimneys from top to bottom. When I finally turned my head to face forward (with the hospital behind me), immediately to the left was Fire Station #55.
That experience proved to me that I would likely one day be able to validate the unknown locations of certain buildings or other landmarks through my clues. And there would always be a final validating clue. In other words, if that had been the third location I identified from my collages, I would have said, "I'll know for sure this is the place if there is a fire company #55." And that's the way the story of my life has unfolded since.
Note: It is documented that Walter Reed Army Hospital was the recipient of MK-Ultra funds for psychiatric experiments. It was also the site for many of the Department of Energy's Human Radiation Experiments.