It has been my experience that when the final event happens that leads to the disintegration of your sanity and sense of self, there is a period of shock. During that time your life may still resemble what it was on the outside, but inside domino after domino is tumbling over. In fact, they gather speed as the protective bubble of shock starts to slip away, rushing toward the destruction of the whole. I distinctly remember a moment when I put my hands on my (then) husband’s arms and said, “We’re not going to let this tear our family apart.” It did though, not because of the trauma itself, but because the trauma shoved the weaknesses in our marriage to the forefront, and there was not enough strength left to hold the other pieces together.
It still takes my breath away, almost a decade later, how quickly the damage became irreversible. The energy required to rebuild a shattered self was, in my case, more than our marriage had to give. More than just a single self, our whole family had to be rebuilt with new roles and expectations to live up to for each of us. It wasn’t possible to do it together in that time and place. Statistics would seem to indicate this is often the case. Particularly when family counseling isn’t agreeable to all parties, and one person cannot do all the work required alone.
Shock protects us initially. I am thankful for that.


~ by janetlandis on December 29, 2008.

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