Exiting the Room
My heart doesn’t lie
The signals are clear
This situation is damaging
If not deadly
Yet I don’t get up
Walk out the door
Follow my heart
Childhood PTSD is a harsh taskmaster
One lesson bleeds into another
Something else reaches out its tentacles
Trying to keep or put me in my place
My heart remembers the terror
It can’t tolerate another second
Of helpless hopeless angst about
What ‘they’ might think or do
When I stand up and exit the premises
It’s not about you or them
It’s about me
It’s about taking my heart seriously
Standing up and walking out the door
Finding a quiet place somewhere else
Acknowledging my terrified heartbeat
Showing it and myself I’m not afraid
Though I don’t understand all the connections
Between this present terror
And the terrors of girlhood
Living with my heart these last few weeks was like enduring an unpredictable roller coaster ride. Lovely moments of normalcy punctuated with the anxiety of a heart out of control. I saw it happening on my heart monitor and felt it in my chest.
My biggest challenge isn’t what to do when this happens at home. It’s what to do when I’m in a public gathering and my heart suddenly goes haywire.
From childhood I’ve known the terror of feeling trapped. No exit. Often in church. Not just at home.
As an adult woman, I’ve also experienced feeling trapped in punishing work and worship situations. I could, and occasionally did get up and leave the room. Though not until I was falling apart.
So what’s needed today? I need to exit the room. Take my heart to a safe place. I don’t need to explain or apologize. It doesn’t even matter that I don’t understand what’s going on. It’s time to follow my heart, and see what happens next.
© Elouise Renich Fraser, 26 March 2019
Photo found at tripadvisor.com
Bravo for listening to your heart and recognizing the lack of need to apologize or explain or even understand it yourself… it gives me hope….
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Thank you Gabrielle! I’m so glad this connected with you, and wish you well in your own journey. 😊💜💕
Why is people now say “exiting a room” instead of “Leaving a room’? I much prefer leaving to exiting, it’s somewhat new I believe, and not a real word
It’s not in my OED.
Exit – Passage or door by which to leave a room. building etc.
I wonder who the smart chum was, who decided to mutilate the English language a bit more?
Now if you’ll excuse me I’ll leave your post, or should that be exit? No not exit……………………….
exit’s a noun
are not is 😦
But exit is in the Cambridge one, which is actually in the same country as Oxford – two meanings as nouns and two as verbs even in the good old UK. Elouise used it as a noun and a verb.
But Lord B I guess you missed the angst and point of Elouise’s heart’s cry. It’s a real feeling and sometimes of helplessness.
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Thank you Robin. 🙏🏻