Moving on while looking back

Nothing is easier than self deceit, for what each man wishes that he also believes to be true – Demosthenes.

I recently finished the book The Tenth Circle by Jodi Picoult, which at first I was unsure about reading. Nervous it would be a bit too close to home, I instantly wanted to know the ending, in slight hope that it would give me an indication on where my life was leading to, whether good or bad. But, after being told the boy committed suicide, the book brought more questions to light than I’d ever had before.

The book follows the life of a fourteen year old girl that was raped by her boyfriend, focusing on the impact of such accusations on all those involved – the victim, the accused, and their families. However the strongest thought throughout is over the power of word. An insult doesn’t have to be shouted to make you bleed, a vow doesn’t have to be whispered to make you believe, a thought is enough to change the actions of anyone and anything that crossed your path.

We keep thoughts within our heads, but because it isn’t said, doesn’t mean it’s not heard. Our thoughts, while they may not have a physical presence, impact our physical actions. We change the way we act around people based on our thoughts, we like and dislike objects because of something we have led ourselves to believe, we wind up believing what we wish to be true. It is human nature to wish. We wish for a better life, wish for health, strength and love, but we can also get lost within our wishes, believing them to be true. I have recently come to realize just how much of an impact a thought can have over a human being. How someone can make a statement about what they’re doing, what they’re feeling, knowing that they are lying, yet still believing themselves to be true. Whether lost within their own mind, caught up in what is wished and what is reality, or whether they are lying with the intention to lie, both are controlled by a thought process that quickly takes a physical presence impacting on those around.

Like any other dual defence, you can’t have strength without weakness, light without dark, love without loss. There is a fine line between love and hate, wishes and reality. You cannot have one without the other, and you need each to know that you are alive. You never expect such closeness of a relationship could one day feel like an intrusion, that something you thought or wished would result in it becoming a reality. That one day, you might be able to pin point the moment your life began to fall apart.

The book looks at dealing with trauma. If you can’t put trauma behind you, you can’t move on, but if you did put trauma behind you, you will have to give up on the claim to the person you were before. Looking into self harm, as well as the support of those trained, Picoult shows that no matter how dark a situation, there is always an opposite. We end up focusing on what we want to get away from in this world rather than what we may miss. Life is limited, and no matter what traumas may occur, we may only have one chance at feeling the touch of a snowflake, the deep breathe of fresh air, the sudden rush of emotion, the love of those that touch your heart, so don’t throw away all you have for something that doesn’t have to control your life.

I saw an old friend call for help today. Stuck in a frame of mind that has no way out, like a deep hole with nothing to climb up with, you feel you have no choice but to let go. But just because it feels like it has no ending, it doesn’t mean its true. There is always a way out, always somewhere you can go to.

When everything was happening last year, when my life felt like it had fallen apart, there were time where I saw no way out, but with perseverance, commitment and determination, I got through it all and I am now stronger than ever. At the time I thought I was in the wrong, that no one would understand how I thought or felt, but how wrong I was. While it is a sad thought, this book alone shows that I am not the first nor the last person to have gone through what I have. It’s reassuring to know that you are not alone, but also sad to think of how many people are put in such a place on a daily basis. I regularly thought I was in the wrong, that I was to blame, but now, over 6 months on I finally realize that I was not to blame. That all the thoughts I was made to think were actually the thoughts of another. While it is not all over, and I’m still not free of it all, I can now look back and realize just what truly happened rather than be lead to think what others tell me.

In time, this will all be behind me but until then, I can already see the old me coming back. I’ve not given up yet.


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