Published November 16, 2017 by Chloe Madison

Dealing with self worth… it’s difficult. It’s difficult to not connect your self-worth to what others think or believe or how they treat you. I think of these people who have known me for 20 years and chose to jump ship. I’m trying my best not to let that hurt me, not to let it affect my self-worth…but it’s near impossible.

I struggle with identity. I struggle so much with identifying myself as a child of God and not as my father’s daughter. And I can’t. I just can’t.

I read an article today about Elon Musk and how he said it’s been difficult breaking up with his girlfriend. His vulnerability struck me because I view him as such a powerhouse of genius, ingenuity, and talent.

“I will never be happy without having someone. Going to sleep alone kills me.” He hesitates, shakes his head, falters, continues. “It’s not like I don’t know what that feels like: Being in a big empty house, and the footsteps echoing through the hallway, no one there – and no one on the pillow next to you. Fuck. How do you make yourself happy in a situation like that?”

“When I was a child, there’s one thing I said,” Musk continues. His demeanor is stiff, yet in the sheen of his eyes and the trembling of his lips, a high tide of emotion is visible, pushing against the retaining walls. “’I never want to be alone.’ That’s what I would say.” His voice drops to a whisper. “I don’t want to be alone.”

😔

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“Friends”

Published November 11, 2017 by Chloe Madison

Y’know, people wonder why I don’t want to share with others. People wonder why I’m so hesitant to reach out. Here’s why. 

I got drunk at home last Friday night, wrote a despondent blog here, cut to release (very superficially- it was NOT a suicide attempt), and promptly went to sleep. I decided I wanted to sleep in so I turned the ringer on my phone down low. Cops started banging on my door around 8pm maybe? 

A friend had read my blog, which was alarming to him, and texted. When he couldn’t get a hold of me, he called 911. Why couldn’t he just send a mutual friend over to check on me? I don’t know. Why couldn’t he call or text a few times instead of just once? I don’t know. Maybe I would have woken up. 

The police refused to believe me when I said I was fine. But I was intoxicated still and I’m not sure how I was presenting to them. 

They took me against my will to the ER. I was compliant and polite, but made it known that it was not my wish to go. To make a long story short, I was locked up in a mental health facility against my will because they thought I was going to commit suicide. 

For five days. 

Within a half hour of being picked up, I frantically started calling friends to help. My main concern was my dog. He just had surgery and needed his meds at 6am. I was so worried I couldn’t find someone to take care of him and make sure he got his medicine on time.

It actually took me several hours to find someone. 

I was so instantly distressed that within an hour of being in the ER, diarrhea started. It was incredibly embarrassing because they wouldn’t let me use the bathroom alone. My body began freaking out. 
I was in the ER for 8-9 hours before I was transported to an awful, awful place…which was chosen because it was the “first place that had a bed open.” In the ER, I counted 7 times that I had diarrhea. It continued and got worse as I began throwing up once I was transferred. I eventually held my vomit in- I didn’t want them to think I was trying to “harm myself” by puking. I was so scared they would hold it against me. 

I was stuck…locked up. I needed help. I needed support. I needed friends.  

My closest friends here are a married couple. I’ve known them for about 25 years now. They’re friends from my hometown church youth group. They were unavailable that Fri night, but I talked to her the next day. I asked her to bring me clothes to wear. I was still in my sleeping clothes from the night before. She said she would come the next day (on Sunday) and that I could wait, that I’ve “been through worse than wearing the same clothes for 2 days in a row.” (Wtf?!?!)  
I decided to reach out to a different friend whom I’m not close to- but who was much more willing to help. Sure enough, my friend didn’t come visit me on Sunday like she said she would. I messaged her on Facebook after waiting all day for her, asking if she was coming. I told both her and her husband  how much I needed their support and their visit. They refused. She messaged saying she supported me, but wouldn’t be visiting. What in the actual f*ck??? I messaged back, saying “Wow. Thanks for the support.”  

I was locked up for 3 more days after that- a total of 5 days. 

They refused to visit me for five days.

They STILL have not bothered to call or text or message to see how I am. For all I know, they don’t even know I’ve been discharged. 

I was in the BIGGEST crisis of my life and they refused to support me or even talk to me. Do you understand why I don’t share things now??

My friend who called 911… we spoke once on the phone when I was locked up and once after I got out. I was honest and told him I still (and always will) respect him and adore him, but at the moment, I’m mad and hurt by what happened. I told him I knew I’d eventually get over it…but it still hurts. 

I have texted him every single day now and he won’t respond. On Facebook, I commented on one of his posts, asking how his dog was and he didn’t answer me. He answered others though. I got so embarrassed that I deleted my comment. I guess he’s avoiding me now? I don’t know. Is this temporary? Is this permanent? I have no clue. 
But there goes another one. You can’t sit here and tell me people love me and support me when they choose to walk out of my life. 

THIS is why I don’t share. This is why I don’t open up. I KNOW I’m dealing with a lot. I know I come with a ton of baggage- even for friends. That’s NOT MY FAULT!! I know it’s a lot for others to handle. This is exactly why I’m so reluctant to share myself with others. 

Rejection. 
It’s the last thing in the world I need. 

People who know my whole story tend to wind up rejecting me. I don’t know why. 

What I DO KNOW is that I don’t need any additional negativity in my life. I don’t need rejection. I need support. 

I know all my baggage is too much. That’s why I come to a place like this. Where I can be myself and at least, not be outright rejected.

Friends- the good: 

-My two best friends who live across the country were a great support to me, they called every day that I was locked up, and one even offered to fly out. 
-Another friend drove an hour and a half to come visit me there and she called as well. 

-The second friend I asked to get clothes for me did so. She visited for a while that day and listened to me. She’s also the one who came to pick me up when I was discharged. I had no one else. 
The bad:

-My closest and longest friends abandoned me in my greatest time of need- in a CRISIS, they chose to not be there. I’m still stunned and don’t know what to make of it. 

-My friend who called 911 isn’t speaking to me now and it’s breaking my heart. He was my biggest supporter and encourager. I love him and his entire family so much and I fear I’ve lost them. I’ve told him this. There’s still no response from him. 

-I was told several times that my pastor would visit me when I was locked up. He didn’t. He called Thursday, 6 days after I got locked up and left a message saying he’d call back. He never did. 

Do you know how hard it was to sit there and watch person after person get visitor after visitor? This is why I feel so alone. I was locked up ALONE and left in there all ALONE. 

You can’t tell me people CARE. It’s fucking bullshit. I know I’m not making myself lovable. I’m not tying to…I’m simply trying to be myself and get through my own crap in my head and heart. As soon as people find out, I get rejected left and right. 

This is why I don’t share. I don’t want to be rejected. It’s that simple. 

EMDR

Published August 18, 2017 by Chloe Madison

I feel so weird. Extraordinarily detached. I’m not feeling a thing. My thoughts seem to float. Detached. No connection. The perfect time Too easy.

Shame is what we focused on- being ashamed of who my father is…that I’m so closely related to a sexual predator, a criminal.

I saw myself walking on the sidewalk next to the building where I work. This massive black tar-like substance began slowing oozing down from the entire building. It was one giant encompassing entity. I think it was shame. It suddenly changed from slow moving to a quickly engulfing tidal wave that swept me up into a whirlpool. A deep black whirlpool. I was caught up in the enormous swirling blackness. Then I noticed the sky turning white. It was a stark contrast to the blackness of the giant whirlpool. I thought maybe the white sky might be God. I saw a red rose floating around in a downward trajectory. I want to die so I laid back in the black whirlpool and floated on my back- giving up, wanting to drown or be swallowed up by this. 

The rose drifted down and landed on my chest. I was distracted by it- I kept looking at it laying on my chest, but also kept laying my head back and floating, in an effort to give up. I realized the rose was sticking to my chest- like the tentacles of an octopus. I tried prying an edge of it off- one rose petal- and as soon as I let go, it would reattach itself. 

I remembered that the red rose had made an appearance before, but I can’t remember what I thought it represented. This time I kept getting the phrase, “Word of God” over and over and I kept picturing my new Bible. So perhaps the rose that’s attached itself to my chest represents the Word of God. As I realize that, I think it begins to embed itself in me. 

I notice the black whirlpool begins to swirl with a milky white liquid, mixing with the blackness. The white seems to overtake the black and soon the whirlpool is white with only traces of blackness through it. 

The spinning of the whirlpool begins to slow. I hadn’t noticed before, but the level of it had lowered. The next thing I know, I’m laying on the wet ground- soggy grass wet with a milky white substance. The waters of the whirlpool had so gently dissipated that I barely noticed it. 

I don’t want to get up- I’m curious to see what’s around me, but I feel lazy, maybe just exhausted- I don’t want to even lift my head. I feel like God is telling me to get up and go. But I don’t want to. It becomes clear that it’s ok for me to stay there for a while and as I do, the grass becomes less and less soggy as the milky liquid is absorbed into the ground. 

I can’t remember correctly. 

I think I sit up and begin to look around and I see nothing in all directions around me. I see a weird scene as short, sharp grass seems to be in blue ground. The word “wasteland” comes to mind. There’s  nothing out there in any direction. It’s a barren wasteland. As I stand up, the landscape turns more and more bleak. There’s still nothing but everything continues to dry up- like the desert of Mad Max and the Thunderdome. I look down as I feel something heavy and awkward on my feet. I see sandals on my feet- but super old school ones like Jesus would wear. I feel something in my hand but I can’t see it clearly. It feels like a heavy Bible or something- but an old leather covered one. The ground has now turned into a dry orange sand.

I can’t determine which way to go- which way God wants me to go. No matter where I turn, every direction looks the same. I think God needs to show me which way to go. I also think this is a long arduous journey- one that will take a while and that I clearly don’t have much to survive with. I see a vertical sliver of light off in the distance and think that must be the way to go. I slowly begin to move toward it. Again, I look down at my feet, the old sandals, and feel this big book-like thing cupped in my hand. I feel underequipped for what’s ahead. 

As I move forward, two big masses of blackness come from either side up in the sky. They develop and swirl like clouds- but they reach from the top of the sky to the ground and even cover parts of the ground. They’re ominous and threatening. I can still see a path to follow in the sand though. I can still look above the blackness and see the little sliver of light to follow. So I continue. 

Then…giant evil faces emerge from the blackness. On both sides, I see deep red eyes and huge, deep red grimaces. They’re laughing at me and threatening me. I hear the word “black” over and over rhythmically and as I do, I picture my wrist, a gun, my wrist, laying back floating in the ocean, Chicago, my wrist, ….

I can now see nothing but blackness. It’s grown to cover every inch of the ground. The path is obscured. Images of suicide are everywhere…surrounding and engulfing me.

EMDR 3

Published June 21, 2017 by Chloe Madison

This was an extemely emotional session- I was crying before I even went in (about other stuff though). I feel so deeply tired, like I can’t move my body. Almost like I’m drunk, my body feels numb and tingly and heavy.

We had a discussion about what’s real or not in EMDR and how could Jesus be bringing forward my dad if I don’t even think my dad’s in heaven. If it’s not real, then how can this bring healing? This was important to discuss because it’s even distracting me during sessions. I wonder how much of what’s happening during EMDR is just wishful thinking on my part and how much of it is real healing that’s occurring. So we only did 20 minutes of actual EMDR.

I realize I have new anger with my dad- so much more than before. I’m incredibly angry about the life his actions have taken and the multiple lives it’s ruined.

We picked up where we left off- my dad was there with a sad face and big, questioning eyes, (waiting for me to either forgive or accept him or hug him or something) and Jesus was behind me. I pushed myself back into Jesus- not wanting to move toward my dad and wanting to rest/ rely on Jesus or to know that he’s still there for me.

Jesus and I were standing the same pool of water. The water changed from blue to red, as I was avoiding looking at Jesus because I really wasn’t ready to move toward my dad. I remembered that Jesus nudged me the last time to go toward my dad, but since I didn’t feel ready, I felt ashamed to look Jesus in the face.

The red crept up from the water and moved into the sky and everything became a deep red- I thought Jesus was leaving, but I remembered that’s what the color purple represents. I’m not sure what the red was all about. 

Out of the corner of my eye, I see green grass sprouting up.

Out of the green, blooms a single yellow orchid (which reminds me of my dad because he grew orchids- there’s even a brown orchid with a fuchsia and yellow center named after my dad, called the Charlie Orchid.) 

The Charlie Orchid


The grass morphs into the orchid plant and in fast forward motion, whole sprays of yellow orchids shoot out and bloom. I see a caretaker of the orchid plant- someone (only a shadow) bent over the plant. I think it might be my uncle (because he and his wife grew orchids after my dad died). It turns out it is my uncle. He looks up and talks, but I can’t hear him. I really want to hear what he’s saying so I tell him that I can’t hear him. He gets up close to me, smiles a great big smile and loudly says with a funny, sarcastic attitude, “What I said was…” and then he keeps talking but I can’t hear him again. His mouth moves, but he’s silent. 

I turn to ask Jesus to help out here- to help me understand what my uncle is saying. I think I forgot some parts that happened in between…but I see my uncle smile like I have literally never seen him smile before and he gives a side hug to my dad, who’s also smiling. I immediately think it’s fake. This isn’t real- there’s no way everything is all hunky dory between them. (This is where I question the veracity of EMDR). 
? I don’t remember, but I think I look back at Jesus to see if this (my dad and uncle hugging and smiling) is real- to get confirmation. Jesus looks different this time though. He looks like a real person- not like the glowing light he was before. 

⬆️⬇️ don’t know which happened first 

? At some point, I’m avoiding looking at Jesus and I look down and play around with the water, letting my hands glide over the top of the blue water. The water slowly turns white. After all the water turns white, where Jesus and I are standing together, the water begins to glow a warm yellow. I feel warmth on my back where Jesus is. I think I turn to see him. And then I turn back to see where my uncle and dad are- it’s like I’m checking to make sure they’re not the same- like there are no tricks or anything. (?)

I look directly at Jesus and ask him to talk to me, I ask, “What do you want me to know?” He says in the most convincing, sincere and compassionate way I’ve ever heard, “I LOVE you.” He continues, “I’m here with you… (and he says something else and something else- I can’t remember)…and “choose life. Choose MY life.” Jesus hugs me and holds me and says the same things all over again. I’m confused with what he means by choose “my life.” I ask him and he says, to choose the life that he has for me. I ask him to explain to me how to do that, to show me that. In response, I no longer see any visuals- I hear “scriptures” over and over again. I’m mildly annoyed by this because it’s a vague answer and It’s always been hard for me to discern the meaning or the direction that some scriptures point you in. But “scripture” was the very clear answer. 

EMDR 2

Published June 12, 2017 by Chloe Madison

We started out with the image of my uncle, shot,  face down in the bloody grass.

I almost immediately lifted straight up in the air and was floating over my uncle’s house.

I saw the events of the suicide play out from a bird’s eye view: my uncle barricading himself in the back bedroom, the police coming in through the front door, I see him leave out the back door of his room and run around to the front of the house. I see him come up behind the officers, the last of whom are still entering through the front door. I see him raise his empty handgun and point it at the officers. I see them shoot him. He falls and as they approach and pick up his weapon, they realize it’s empty. One of them says, “Ah, fuck.” 

The police take hours to write up their reports. One of my memories is staring at the circular burn marks in the grass that were made by the police cars idling on top of the high lawn.

My aunt is crying and my uncle is getting taken away on a stretcher. 

I go back into his bedroom, where he’d barricaded himself.

I feel like there’s something I need to see, something I need to find- a clue maybe. 

I’m drawn to the bed…it’s dark underneath- twice I see a long shot gun laying under the bed amidst the darkness.

I find sheets of paper between the mattresses – maybe a suicide note? Or some kind of communication from my uncle?

I hold the papers and a green vine grows up out of them toward the sky, like Jack and the Beanstalk. The vine quickly swirls upward toward the sky and soon, red blood trickles down the vine.

The trickle turns into a gushing of blood pouring down, like the elevator scene in The Shining, where blood gushes out. 


I jump out of the way as the blood pours down from the heavens. It pools on the floor. I keep up against the sides of the walls. I don’t know what to do. I slip out of the door to the bedroom, wanting to leave the mess behind. I feel guilty right away and realize I’m turning my back on my uncle. So I face the door and put my hand on white door and on the door handle, saying to myself that I’ll go back in. I just need a minute. 

Then a yellow light forms directly behind me and garners my attention. I’m drawn to the light but I keep wanting to go back to the bloody room. I hear, “Come to the light.” I think they say, “that’s not yours,” taking about the bloody mess in the room. 

I don’t want to leave the room- it’s my depression. I’m not sure I’m ready to leave the room/ the depression behind.

A hand reaches out from the light and takes mine and it makes me smoothly and swiftly move forward. I think I say something about how easy it is when you take my hand. ? 

It pulls me sharply through a membrane or energy field kind of thing- into a bubble filled with white light. 

Inside the bubble is bright but we can see through it. We float up again over the house. I see the dark room – blackness envelops the outside of the room and the red blood is still pooled in the inside. It seems they’re pointing me in the opposite direction of the room to find happiness. It’s not toward the bloody, black room- it’s elsewhere.

I look over to see what/ where happiness is and the place has green foliage with red roses and a blue ocean. I see the red roses vividly- they stand for life. It’s just the rose- no stem, no nothing- just the flower. Suddenly I’m out in the ocean and there are about 5 or 6 of the roses floating in the blue ocean with me. I question whether the ocean is truth like the other blue water was. It’s not. It’s darker, deeper. I see it as being how I describe depression and suicide- like an uncontrollable, wild sea overwhelming and devouring you. 

Like La Mer:


Like my twitter picture:


So I decide the ocean is not where the roses belong. I look toward the shore and see the white sand of the shore and the green foliage with palm trees. I think that’s where I need to move to. I pick up the roses floating in the ocean and gather them together and paddle for the white beach. Paddling goes on forever. I make it to the white beach, sit down, gaze out over the ocean, and set the roses down in the sand. As I’m looking at them, I realize they won’t flourish here. They’re life. And to make them live, they need to reach the green foliage behind me. So I pick the roses up off the sand and take them to the greenery. I see a small gentle waterfall flowing into a small cool pool of water in the middle of the green foliage. I think the roses might belong there so I put some in the greenery and I lay some on the water to float. I stand in the water and analyze the roses in the greenery and the roses floating to see which is better. The water is better. So I take the few roses from the greenery and put them in the water with me. 

I want to lay back in the cool water and float, but I don’t want to lose touch with the roses. So I take a rose in each hand and lay back and float. With the red color in my palms, it reminds me of Jesus on the cross. 

When you float and water is in your ears, you can’t hear most of what’s happening around you. So I think it’s not safe to float because I can’t hear if anyone or anything approaches. So I sit up to see if anyone is there. I spin around and do a 360 and see no one. But I feel like someone is there so I say, “who’s there?” At this point, I think my dad begins to come forward- a faded figure with a belly. I’m not sure though. As he emerges, it becomes clear that it’s definitely him. I see his jeans and his red and white plaid shirt.


 I recognize his body, but his face is more blurry. 

I think he’s there to finish our conversation. I go to get out of the pool to hug him/ greet him. But I stop. I picture wearing wet clothes and think because of him and his past, that might not be appropriate or safe. So I remain in the water. He sits on the edge of the pool with his feet in the water. I want to talk so I say, “Is there anything you want to say?” He says, “I love you” and then says something about if there was ever any doubt or there shouldn’t be a doubt. I think he says something else but I can’t remember. 

<I think something significant happens here, but I just can’t remember what… >

I apologize, but I bluntly tell him that I just can’t trust him. I see a picture of the clown painting and a bird briefly enters the picture. I think the clown painting (representing grooming or deceitful, manipulative actions) might represent why I have doubts. 

I just don’t believe him.
I ask, “Can God say that to me so I can believe you?” But I feel bad right away and drop my head, thinking of how you shouldn’t ask God to prove things to you. 

Jesus comes almost immediately, full on in all His glory. No shadowy figure- but a bright white and yellow, very clear image of him appears. He gets in the water with me and stands right in front of me. It’s almost invasive how close He gets…but it makes me realize He’s there for me, how close He is to me.

He holds his hands out toward me with a red rose in it. The red rose turns into the red sacred heart. 


I think I hear “Jesus is life/ I am life” and “choose life” over and over and over again. Jesus takes me by the hand and I say how easy it is when he holds my hand. I grab? His other hand and ask him to never let go. We embrace in a long, strong, very safe hug.

I don’t know if I ask him if my dad loves me or not. My dad is there off to the side waiting. I explain that I love my dad and I think I’ve forgiven him. Jesus answers by saying, “I love you” with the implication of isn’t that enough? Or isn’t that all you need? Inside I know it is. I don’t answer out loud. I cry a lot (in real life) while this is happening.

I think I still want to know about my dad- what to do. When I asked Jesus to never let go of my hands he didn’t…until this point. He turns me around to face my dad and puts his hands on my shoulders. His hands feel huge and they grip strong so I know he won’t let go of me. He’s got me, is supporting me- he’s got my back, so to speak. I feel a gentle nudge forward, towards my dad- Jesus asks if I’m ready to move forward. I hesitate. I don’t know. I feel I’m not ready and I don’t know if I should accept him or what. ? 
The therapist says she sees the Holy Spirit all over this. She said something similar the last time too. I wonder if she just says that to everyone. 

I didn’t want to go today. I was crying before I even went. I’m so angry and so overwhelmingly sad. I’m surrounded by love at the moment, but all I want to do is get away- run away. I just want to disappear. On multiple levels.