It is a long time since I have had time alone and head space. I have between work driving around and home life thinking about writing some more about bullying and the impact it has had on me, my life and the direction I am taking me in. It still feels like something that I am reluctant to talk about and not sure if others wish to listen. Shame I still am coming to terms with how I allowed this experience to happen. Shame means I am still struggling to process the huge emotional damage bullying has done to me. I think in many ways to suit others and myself I have tried to bounce back to the old me and business as usual.
Now this is working in some ways. By replicating the old me I am not being a victim and I am not broken. It has enabled me to get back to work, to earn money and to remain a competent professional. Slowly by “going through the motions” I am rebuilding my confidence at work. More importantly I relearning how to trust colleagues again and seek support when I need it. This has been key on my road to recovery. I am fortunate to have found a job in a healthy work place with supportive colleagues. I am able to share and reflect on my bullying experiences and how this may impact on me.
I am also avoiding work conflict and not seeking to over complicate stuff. In some ways I have always been open about who I am and my ability at work and this has made me a victim of being over worked, over thinking and indeed being bullied. I am reaching a reality that just because I could do it a certain way on a certain day it does not need to be done. I am letting go and working hard at “good enough”. This is enabling me to return to the next task in hand the following day.
I have had some real flight or fright moments at work and in life. Generally folk do not see this about me. I am a performer, a faker of the confident. In order to step forward in life I step over my nerves and refuse to accept my anxieties. These anxieties and nerves have increased post bullying but I am seeking alternative strategies. I am currently trying to acknowledge these feelings, own them and then develop healthy strategies to manage. Journaling, dabbling in yoga and meditation are starting the beginning of a new quiet internal adventure for me. Certainly, the physicality of writing emotions out with pen and paper is supporting me finding a new truthfulness about me. It feels like I fell so hard and low last year that I can never trip and run through life like a did before.
I used to stand at the front and speak up loud and proud. I still speak up when I have to but with hesitation. I had a strong sense of justice and fairness and that this would always be upheld. You know the truth will out in the end. This would lead me to stay and fight my corner my version of truth. I would want justice to be done. These days I work on circles of influence of what I have can control. I am slowly learning to accept that some stuff is not right but beyond my control.
I meant to write that I have given up hope but this sounds so bleak. I have reached the realisation that whether right or wrong along with a series of really horrid events I was horrendously bullied and this nearly broke me. So, I no longer hold hope that justice will be done. I am focusing on the hope that I have the strength and strategies to heal me and to find a different way to walk forward in the world. Being bullied leaves a huge scar that will never be erased so it is finding a way to heal, ease the pain and then learn to love the scar and incorporate it into my new sense of being.
I am remembering this time last year. I can watch me as if I was in a film. It is like I am drowning in a huge lake water. I am reaching up trying to climb out but just sinking being pulled down. My bully is pushing me away from those that can help me and I cannot help myself. I am about to reach a whirlpool and I know I am going to drown. At this point I went on annual leave to dance camp. Exhausted and broken. So where am I year on? Well I am not being bullied but am still very vulnerable. The shame is still there but I can take the cloak of shame off now. I am tired but healthily tired from working hard and need a break. I am and will allow myself to recharge with my holidays and not disguise my fears and anxieties in chasing others wants and needs. You know what I might even say “No thanks” and nurture me!
Another thing I am noting is that I have taken a lot of time this past year to personally reflect. I am stopping considering actions activity and impact it is having on me. Life continues to challenge the path I walk in life is never going to be an easy one. However, I can control how I approach stuff and the impact it has on me. Vulnerability from bullying has given me the gift that I am no longer able to chase being superwoman. I have reached a positive resignation of acceptance of life’s challenges but to focus on the good bits in between and also to just care less about other stuff and not feel shame about it.
I shall just keep trying to walk forwards.