Published March 23, 2018 by Chloe Madison

I have actually slept super well for the last 3 nights in a row! I’ve slept long and deeply. I woke up only about 4 times each night- that’s a world record for this past year and a half.

I am so grateful. I’m still so, so exhausted that I came home from work yesterday and crashed- took a nap and then still slept through the night. I’ve only got a year and a half of sleep to catch up on. 🙂

Lots of dreaming, but very few nightmares. So that’s good. My therapist and I decided not to do EMDR again because she thinks I’m still processing with all the nightmares I previously had. Next week is spring break- so maybe the idea of vacation time is helping me to relax as well. (?) I don’t know.

My therapist said she thought I was doing too much to keep my mind occupied. The studying, the chase, and the hiking every weekend…she thought maybe I’m not giving my brain enough down time to process and that’s why I was still processing things through nightmares.

We talked a lot about my friend who relapsed. She thinks I have issues of my own that came up when things with him started happening. I guess him being mean or rude to his wife brought up my past with my ex who was pretty abusive psychologically, emotionally, and verbally. Only rarely did it turn into physical abuse. Catching him cheat on me was just the cherry on top. I do still have a lot of hurt and anger from that. I know that every time my ex was enraged with me, it was never my fault and it was never justified. I guess that’s why my friend being mean to his wife is ruffling my feathers so much now. I love the guy and care deeply for both him and his wife…but I cannot, cannot, absolutely canNOT handle a man mistreating a woman. I just can’t do it anymore. I’ve seen it my whole life and I hate it. I’m sick to my stomach about him doing it- I guess because I’d looked at him as a good, Christian guy. I’m not saying he isn’t. But it’s just a huge let down. He and his wife took good care of my little dog for me when I was in the hospital. I’m so appreciative of that and grateful for them welcoming me with open arms and zero judgment. I need to extend the same to him.

I have a friend coming in town to visit tomorrow. I’m looking forward to it, but I’m super scared. Either I hide who I am and all the terrible things I’m dealing with- or I’m open and honest. Obviously, he could reject me as crazy or needy or any number of things I’m scared people will judge me as. I have quite a bit of hesitation with seeing him- but at the same time, he’ll occupy about a third of my spring break- so that’s great. I don’t think I need to be alone. That’s never good. Not recently, anyway.

And the sanctuary, the shelter that I’ve been envisioning…I’d love to be able to open a Christian camp in the remote mountains. I was thinking part of it could be a place that church groups could go to for retreats- youth groups or men’s or women’s groups. The other part of it though- that’s what I’m focusing in on- the other part would be a safe haven for victims of human trafficking and/ or sex trafficking. It would be a safe place that’s remote so they have no fear of anyone they escaped from finding them and where they’d feel confident walking around outside, enjoying nature. I envision having group meetings and even counseling/ therapy for them. Maybe have a full-time therapist on staff? That would be awesome. I’d like to give a beautiful, safe place to people who need it- who need some where to go for months or even a year- to recover, to learn to live again, to learn to feel safe again. I was thinking of offering training in some kind of trade as well- so they could sustain themselves and make a living on their own.

I don’t know- it’s just a dream. I keep envisioning it in this peaceful river valley that I’ve been driving through these last few weekends.

So…there’s that.

Please pray for my friend and his wife.

Published March 18, 2018 by Chloe Madison

Oph. Nightmares have been unreal. And unrelenting. Last night I had several. The most notable was when a friend killed me. The killer’s face in my dream actually kept switching back and forth between two different people, both friends of mine. At one point, my friend/ the killer was threatening my life. I retorted with the fact that he should go ahead- he’d be doing me a favor. Smh.

I’m not quite sure why the last 2 days have been so difficult. My sleep has been so interrupted and when I do sleep, it’s nothing but nightmares. I’ve been overly emotional these last few days as well. When I was hiking this weekend, I kept breaking down crying. Hiking and crying doesn’t mix. I’m not gonna lie. I thought of ***** and ***** quite a bit out there.

These last two weeks have actually been GOOD. I was beginning to get hopeful that I was on my way out of this dark mire. But now I’m not so sure. I keep wanting to stay away from people and keep them away from me. I just want to be left alone and yet I absolutely despise it. I actually hate, hate, hate being alone. It’s just a safe place to recoil to.

Up on the mountain, I was begging God to be with me. He wasn’t. I asked out loud over and over throughout the hours, “God, are you there?” I tried to humor myself by replying to my own question with a sound effect of lightning striking. I thought I was funny. But that didn’t change the fact that I was alone up there.

I don’t know why I cried so much. Both today- during church again- and all day yesterday.

The only thing I can think of is that I’m wrestling with how I view people- and men, in particular.

I know my abusers have been men. Throughout my life, I tried to be normal and be in relationships, but my two most serious relationships ended because I was being cheated on. So I haven’t had the best men in my life- obviously including my own father. And I even think of my grandfather who was a verbally abusive a-hole.

I’ve tried to counteract this and combat it by looking to good men in my life. I think of a teacher I had in high school who I fantasized would marry my mom and be my dad. He was gay and and I chuckle, knowing even back then that my little fantasy would never happen. But I wonder if him being gay is what made him feel so safe. He would never hurt me. Beyond that, he was a gentle, sweet old man. And I love that about him. I was crushed when I ran into him a decade later and he didn’t remember me.

I fondly remember my youth pastors and how awesome they were. They were great examples of Christian men and they were fun and loving and just plain awesome. Then, after my teenage years, I ran into a void of good men. I stopped going to church and didn’t exactly surround myself with the best people. I was involved in the music/ rock scene and saw every single guy use women nonstop for sex. It was unreal. There was even one band I know who have special backstage passes made for girls called “Chicken Head” passes. It’s a lewd reference to girls giving oral sex. I mean, how much more degrading can you get?! And I’d see guys laugh about that.

Then, I started coming back to church. And I came into contact with my former pastor. He’s an amazing man. I love the guy to pieces. He told me he thinks of me as one of his daughters and I loved that. I miss him a lot. He’s the one who said my dad was a monster. But he was a pillar of strength to me and a source of encouragement through long, daily emails for years and years. Both he and his wife are phenomenal people.

And then I moved out of state. It took me several years to find a good church. And almost immediately, I found a guy at that church who was a great, trustworthy person. He’s my 911 friend. I love how he interacts with people and how he cares for and loves his wife and family- and everyone else, for that matter. He’s the most recent person I’ve tried to use as someone to look to as a good example of what a good, Christian man should be like.

My 911 friend kept pushing me to stay with another couple. I didn’t have the heart to tell him that I didn’t trust the guy. There were stories of him being violent towards his wife when he used to use drugs and I could never fully let that go. It’s disturbing and highly alarming to me if any person has the potential to hurt another when not in self defense. That’s not ok. It never will be. I kept trying to tell myself that this guy is no longer a drug user, that it’s in his past, it’s not who he is anymore. But I still felt threatened. And now, in the last two weeks, I’ve seen him relapse. It’s not his relapse that’s so disturbing. It’s his mistreatment of his wife while he was actually sober. He treated her like dirt and continues to- even when he’s not high. THAT is what I’m struggling with. Of course, I’m worried for his relapse and don’t want him going down that road. But I can’t believe- I’m actually shocked- that his verbal, emotional, and psychological abuse of his wife is coming when he’s sober. I don’t know what to make of that. Part of me feels justified in how I never fully trusted him and this IS EXACTLY why. But part of me feels guilty…that I should be forgiving. He’s not remorseful though. He doesn’t see anything wrong with how he mistreats and “punishes” his wife. And that makes me question why she stays with him. If it were me, I’d dip out in a second. But hey, maybe that’s why I’m not in a relationship. I absolutely cannot handle a man being cruel or abusive in any way, shape, or form. I just can’t do it.

And we…women…shouldn’t have to! Why do women put up with this? Because they love the guy? Because they’re stuck in a marriage and they don’t want to dishonor God by divorcing? Smh. This pisses me off.

And frankly, seeing all this unravel with this guy and his wife has made me lose HUGE amounts of hope in humanity and in men, in general.

And I think that’s part of what’s bothering me so much. It was him in my dream who was killing me. Him and someone else.

And then I have compassion. And I see his demons and how they’re fighting to take over his life. And I know we have the same demons. We’ve both been sexually abused, among other things. I see him relapse and I see that there’s no way out for people like us. There’s no hope for us. We claw and crawl our way up out of the pit, only to be drug right back down again in an instant. This is weighing so heavily on me. We are not in control. Satan is. You can’t fight that. There’s no winning. If God wanted us to get away, he would have done that already. But he hasn’t.

Published March 17, 2018 by Chloe Madison

My plan is to just chill for the night. I flip the channels to find some light-hearted movie just to make background noise in the house- so I don’t feel so alone. It doesn’t get any more light-hearted than Lindsay Lohan, right? So I start watching Georgia Rule while I do other things.

Then my anger grows- as she lies about being molested by her step-father. I remember the time my old pastor told me about how some people will do that- it’s rare, but it happens. I remember being baffled. Who on earth would lie about something so shameful?!? It’s not a an attention- seeking pity party- it’s a shame- filled, isolated f**king death sentence!! And here was Lindsay Lohan, on screen, lying about that. I was perplexed as I continued to watch…wondering how this fit the story line of her being an out of control, rebellious teenager.

And then the truth finally came out. She had never lied. They only thought she did. And then she actually started lying (telling her mom it didn’t happen) because her mom was in love with the guy and she just wanted her mom to be happy again.

I’m furious. For so many reasons…. crying as I write this. It pisses me off that there are people who get happy endings from this. It pisses me off that the guy in the movie is an asshole who never takes responsibility, blames her, and victimizes himself. It pisses me off that yet another movie is portraying a sexual assault victim as promiscuous. I hate that. I’m not like that- I know many victims move down that path- I honestly don’t understand it. But that’s not all of us- not all of us are promiscuous- so stop portraying us that way. So here you have a sexually abused young girl on screen and she’s a mess, rebellious, lying, coming onto guys nonstop- both teenagers and older men…and this is how the world sees us?

I’m not ok with that. I’m not ok with the fact that at the end of the movie she gets a huge hug and an “I’m sorry” from her mom when all I get is nauseated from watching this stupid movie. I never got a hug, I never got an “I’m sorry.”

All I get is people giving up on me, deciding I’m not good enough, and walking out of my life. No one has ever stuck by my side.

I know I have issues. That stupid movie kept talking about trust issues and as cliché as it sounds- it’s true. My therapist and I are talking about that too. I know I don’t trust anyone. And I know I may never get there. I know shame is devastating and ruling my very being. And I don’t think I can ever shed that.

I hate this. It’s not ending. I’ll never get better. People say they’ll help and then they dip out. I don’t understand. The only thing I can think is that I’m too much of a problem or a stress or a strain or that I’m draining. I can’t help it- I’m just being myself, however f**ked up that is. I want to tell myself to have some dignity and if people don’t care about me- then let them go and not be hurt by it. But it bothers me so much.

I am




Published March 14, 2018 by Chloe Madison

I had another horrible nightmare about being hospitalized again. A co-worker was in my dream and I was pleading to not have to go to the hospital again. I absolutely hate this.

Ive had several nightmares in the last few days, but some benign dreams too.

I’ve been pretty irritable, but overall mood is good. Things are actually looking better than they have in over a year IF I keep my mind occupied 100% of the time. I took one day after work to just rest and watch TV and my thoughts and mood immediately went downhill.

I’m working hard to keep myself occupied with various projects at home- just reorganizing or sifting through old paperwork to see what I can trash, studying, stretching, working on the hunt….I’m trying. But it’s exhausting to keep myself busy 100% of the time. It’s impossible for me to do indefinitely.

But I have to say things are actually kind of ok. And THAT is amazing. The other thing is my church. I’m so thankful for God giving me that church and those people. No matter how much of a hard time I have trusting people… there are very good people at my church. My pastor is one of them. He’s amazing. I barely know the guy, but from what I see, he’s very genuine and so is everything he does. All the other people in my church too…. they’re all amazing people. I’m thankful to be in the midst of them every Sunday. It’s a good place to be.

And I’m working on trying to think of it as a safe place to be. That’s slow in coming, but I’m working on it.

I’m still anxiety-ridden knowing that God is disappointed in me. But he’s one person you can’t pretend with. I can’t pretend to trust him when I don’t fully trust him. I can’t fool him into thinking I’m ok or I have faith that the future will be good. I don’t think it will and God knows that. He knows me. He knows I don’t have perfect faith in him and he knows I’m skeptical and don’t trust him. It doesn’t matter the reason- my therapist told me again how I’m transferring my distrust of my earthly father to my Heavenly Father. And I know the reason doesn’t matter. I’m just not able to trust at this point.

I know God is disappointed in me and that feels terrible. I know he’s mad at me for not having hope and for wanting to *** ** ****. He gave it to me and I’m not appreciating it. There’s no hiding that from him. I love God, but I’m scared of him. Geez…that could describe how I feel about many people in my life. I love people so, so deeply, but I’m so terrified of just about everyone out there. I know I have good reason, but I also know I’m an adult and those reasons shouldn’t matter.

I was just thinking…dogs and babies. Those are the only living things that I’m not afraid of, that I don’t feel threatened by. Everyone else, everything else- every single person on the face of this earth is dangerous and can hurt you. People aren’t safe. Period. End of story. But I feel God has placed me in my church for a reason. Even though I can’t fully trust them…it’s not their fault…but they are some amazing people. I miss my 911 friend and the positive influence he was. But still…I think of the people at my church and they are one phenomenal group. I’m scared to even talk to most of them 😂- but I’m grateful for them.

I’m trying to remain as positive as possible…

Published March 12, 2018 by Chloe Madison

I’ve had so many sleep disturbances. A few nights ago, I was up about 25 times- no joke. Interestingly, I was able to promptly fall back asleep each time…only to wake up 20 minutes later. The next night, my dog was super sick again and he had me up about every hour to go out. It was the weekend though, so I was glad I could take care of him and not have to worry about sleeping well for work.

I went hiking exhausted. I’m so drawn there. It’s absolutely beautiful- stunning, really. I didn’t take one minute to stop and sit. I should have though. I hiked for hours and hours. The view was incredible:

It was a narrow ridge line. It couldn’t have been more than 150-200 feet across at its widest point. It was a hike straight up…no trails. While driving there, I prayed for people and I’d asked God to be with me that day. I told him that’s all I wanted…for him to be with me.

I was disappointed because I don’t feel he answered that prayer. I encountered one old man up on top for a few seconds. He came out of nowhere and at first, he remarked how he’d never seen another soul up on top of the mountain before. Then he asked me how I got up there. I told him and he ran off. RAN! He was RUNNING the ridge…he had to be in his 70s and he was running the ridge that I was huffing and puffing just walking on. Smh. As I neared the other end of the ridge line, I couldn’t figure out how he got up there. Cliffs were everywhere on all sides. I still don’t know where he came from. I thought I’d pass him again going the other direction, but he disappeared. I joked to myself that it was God making an appearance. But I know it wasn’t.

I listened to the song about God’s relentless love over and over and over again while driving out there. I’m trying so hard to keep a positive attitude.

It’s one thing I noticed with my last EMDR session- was how much I was trying to control what happened in order to keep it positive. Usually, I just let my mind run free, but last time I worked so hard to stay positive. It’s one thing I’m trying to do since being hospitalized. I don’t ever want to go back there again so I’m trying my best. But we didn’t do EMDR last week because she thought I still needed to process more before moving into another session. She thought all the new sleep disturbances, migraines, and nightmares were caused by the last gut- wrenching session. Truthfully, I was scared to go see her last week because I really didn’t want to do it again.

Today I found out that a friend has relapsed. I’m having a hard time wrapping my brain around that. I offered his wife my place to stay- at least until my lease is up. I don’t think she’ll take me up on it, but in case things get violent, it’s important for her to know she has a place to go and someone to talk to night or day. I’m available 24/7 and she knows that. I just don’t know what else to do besides pray. I feel helpless. I’m so mad at him and yet I’m terrified of the stories I’ve heard about him when he used in the past. But at the same time, I’ll do whatever it takes to be there for his wife and even protect her, if it ever comes to that. He could kill me for all I care. That would be doing me a favor.

I’ve been wondering why I actually had a good week in terms of my mood. I don’t know if it’s meds finally working or prayer or both. And then I look at my friend and see his relapse. He was sexually abused as well. It makes me think there’s no hope for people like us. That’s why I hate that word. It’s bullshit. That song says “there’s no lie you won’t tear down coming after me” and I think of these things I believe. Are they lies or truth? I don’t see God coming after me anymore. At one point I did. Not anymore. God has left the same way that everyone has left. My two friends refusing to be there for me proves that people don’t care about anyone but themselves. People don’t love. People will get sick of your needy ass and will leave you. It happens all the time. No one is there.

I look at my relapsed friend who’s married and has constant companionship and even he struggles. His wife is wonderful and she’s not enough. That tells me that people like us will never get better. There’s no hope for us.

My whole last session was about God being disappointed in me for not having hope in him…about him being mad at me for being such a mess and for not trusting him. I don’t know what to do with that. I ask God to be with me…and then he doesn’t show. I don’t know what to make of it. That’s not lies. That’s the truth. That’s what really happened and keeps happening. All my friends have given up on me. They’ve all left. They tried for a while and got sick of it and bailed. God has left too. He’s sick of my shit and I know it. I feel so terrible about that.

This is all I am. A whole lot of nothing.

Published March 8, 2018 by Chloe Madison

I had a terrible nightmare last night. I woke up from it and fell back asleep into the same dream. Why does that never happen with good dreams? It was about real life events from my past. I don’t want to write about it though- just dreaming about it was agonizing enough.

I’m still in a pretty good mood considering all the sleeplessness and headaches and nightmares. I’m most definitely irritable, but I seriously have no control over that at this point.

I’ve been thinking about ***** so, so much lately. There was something about getting lost out there that’s brought me back to it. I found a story online about an old timer who mysteriously vanished in the late 1800s out there. He was found decades later in a cave that he’d stocked with some supplies. Because of the lack of forensic technology back then, it’s still not known whether he committed suicide or was murdered. He was shot and his bones were found laying in the cave next to the bones of his dog. 😦

I don’t know why- that just makes me think a lot about life and death. I look at my scar-

Y’know, today I was cleaning out some stuff and I found all my pills. The stash of pills left over from surgeries that I’d planned on using. I have more than I thought.

I look over at my field and it makes me so sad to see the grass mostly mowed. It’s not like it used to be.

I feel like… a waste. This is not what God wants me to do with my life. It can’t be, can it??

I wish there were more people at church who cared for those of us who are already Christians, but who are still struggling. It seems that everyone I know who’s a believer is laser focused on non-believers and that’s it. No one is there to care for us who believe in God, but struggle with life and death and God. There needs to be more of that. There shouldn’t be anyone who commits suicide. There needs to be people who love those who are hurting in the church. I’ve been thinking this for over 2 years now.

I remember trying to reach out to some people at church when I first started going downhill. No one seemed interested in listening or caring. Those people are amazing- I love them, but they only seem to care about unbelievers. The rest of us don’t exist. So I saw this void in the church- simply supporting and loving those who are already there.

And I’m back to square one. I feel like no one cares. No one is here. I’m alone. I’ve been fighting the loneliness by keeping myself super busy- the weekend jaunts, cleaning things out, studying….but it’s really starting to get to me again. I can only fight it for so long.

I’m so thankful my mood is still ok at this point. But I can see my thoughts going down, down, down.

I’m starting to think all this struggling is for nothing. There’s no winning no matter what you do. I wish I could control my thoughts better. I wish I was stronger- like how I see everyone else being strong. I wish I helped others more. I wish that God loved me. I’m so