Thursday, February 09, 2012

Random Love

I got to leave work after an offsite meeting today.  It ended early, which made me H.A.P.P.Y.  I walked to the bus station and caught the first bus heading over to my side of town, confident that I would find a connection to get me home (and I did).  As the bus was sitting at a red light downtown, a man walked towards my window, looking me straight in the eye.  He reached out his arm and drew that heart in the dirt on the window.  It was a tiny, special moment.  It might have been the best moment of my day.

Today was challenging.  My job is very cyclical.  I am scrambling to find things to do right now.  I do not do well with this.

And today I think I had a bit of on-the-job-PTSD.  If I start misspelling words, you will understand that I don't want to come up in searches for these things, OK?  I went to a meeting of an organization against doomestic vioolence (hey! I think I like that spelling!).  I was seated at a conference table with a bunch of young, long-haired bright women, a woman my age with short grey hair and hippie clothing and jewelry, a black woman with dreadlocks, and the token man.  I was introduced to the group, I gave a very brief presentation, and then I sat down to observe their meeting.  I started to take notes (which I consider a default defense mechanism) and saw the handwriting of an old person coming out of my pen.  I could not make MY handwriting come from my hand.  Then I discretely held my hand still and found that it wouldn't be still.  I was shaking so badly I couldn't write.  Holy Cow.

I listened to these people for an hour and a half and not once heard anything I considered judgmental or harsh towards persons who are suffering from doomestic aboose.  That was encouraging.

But I sat there thinking about being taken away from my home by the police because a neighbor had called and reported that "he" was beating on me again.  When they got there, "he" was perfectly calm and collected and told the police that I was a mentally ill alcoholic and that he had been going to Alanon to try to learn how to deal with me.  He failed to mention that I was sober for 8 years and he was also an alcoholic.  I was a basket case, as any woman who has been beaten usually is, and wasn't quite as articulate as "he."  They had to arrest someone, so they were going to arrest me.  They didn't end up arresting me, but they did drive me away in the back of their car.  I think they dropped me off somewhere, like a load of something distasteful.  A one armed man from my AA meeting let me stay with him for a few days, and then I went "home."  Sounds delusional, doesn't it?  It isn't, I can assure you.  This is now nearly 20 years ago.  Praise God.

I thought of how my daughter had recently been able to leave her creepy b.f. by going to a shelter for aboosed women.  They kept her there for a long enough time for her to get her wits about her and they counseled her so she could get her own housing and some financial things in place.  That shelter truly changed her life.  She is now in her own apartment and going to school full time.  She still has a social worker from that program who comes and does a visit to her apartment once a month.  Now, THAT is a program that works.  And I am glad I know where the funding is coming from for that.

I will get used to being on the professional side of this equation, but I am not quite there yet.  This really highlights for me how long ago all of this was and how different my life is today.  Only by the Grace of God, really, truly.  I could not have gotten me to there from here.  There is no logical way.  But here I am.  Sober, healthy, happy, unafraid of what will happen if I close my eyes to go to sleep.  I haven't hidden my purse under my mattress for nearly 20 years!  And a stranger put a heart on the bus window today.  Just a nice little gift.

Thank you God!

14 comments:

Marcia said...

your post made me laugh out loud. Not sure if that was your intent but there you have it. I like your spelling.

dAAve said...

The city bus operators need to wash some damn windows. LOL

And I like the different spelling too.

Lou said...

How awesome to hear of a program that actually helps those it intends to! And follow up with a social worker? OMG, "follow up" is practically not in our social services vocabulary anymore.

Good stuff.

Syd said...

What you and so many others go through at the hands of abusers is horrible. I am glad that you are there on the professional side of the table. Your presence will help a lot of people.

Annette said...

Oh MC...I know you probably don't want or need sympathy for past trauma's....but that it still made you shake, even today, 20 years later.....just made me sad for that hurt spot inside your heart. For you, you precious woman. I am glad God moved upon some stranger's heart to share a love symbol with you.

atomic momma said...

Mary Christine you made me laugh and then made me cry.

Don't be so hard on yourself. There is a learning curve with every job no matter how much you think you should jump in right away.

Kary May said...

I think God paid you a visit yesterday and left you valentine.

Jess Mistress of Mischief said...

WOW,

Its these beautiful raw details that make you really realize how big God is! :)

Last 100 Days Alcoholic said...

The heart on the window; the flashbacks with the Police; the anxiety about work-related claptrap;
I hear you - WE ALL DO.
Such a wise and calm post - thank you for sharing your inspiration...

Hope said...

The heart on the window made me teary. What a comfort on a difficult day for you. It's just shitty that you were triggered. I hate when that happens.

My job is cyclical, too. I used to feel guilty for that, as if the down times were my fault, when it's simply the reality of the job. I'd much rather be steadily busy, though.

I have two distinct hand writing styles, the second one being a stress response one. The two are not even recognizable as being by the same person.

SoberMomRocks said...

That wasn't a stranger. That was an angel that God sent because He knew how much you needed a hug. God bloos you gurl.

Bill and Sandy Fifield said...

It is excellent to hear of a success story like your daughter's and of a Random Act of Kindness like the heart on the window.

My husband and I have also been sober for two decades, and that gift is something we work toward and are thankful for each and every day.

Mary Christine said...

I definitely saw that heart as a gift from God. Sometimes he gets really really close.

ScottF said...

wow, an angel indeed... (the heart/window guy, I mean) that's something!