This blog is part of my recovery, and I would like it to remain a safe place for me to share parts of myself and my life that people close to me may or may not know. As a result, while I'm not going crazy with privacy settings, I do ask that if you find this on your own and suspect you may know me, please respect my privacy by checking with us before reading any further. This obviously doesn't apply if one of us has given you the link!

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Even A Knife-Wielding Maniac Can Illustrate Growth

Yesterday, I went to an event held by Open Minds, and came home expecting everybody to be out. After I turned around and locked the door, without even having a cursory look around the room, I turned back to discover a "knife-wielding maniac" standing right in front of me.

Confronted with a similar situation a week ago, the 18yo daughter stood still and screamed. And darn near wet herself. I would have expected that to be my reaction as well. Instead I stood stock still with quite a surprised look on my face and just froze. Completely and utterly. And then my eyes adjusted, I saw who it was... and I laughed.

Since the "knife wielding maniac" was, in both instances, Bumface, I posted about the prank on Facebook as I internally processed all the positive things I had learned from it. Unfortunately, some of my friends seemed to feel that because they didn't find it amusing, I couldn't (or shouldn't?) have, either and I now have a lot to process around that.

But.. between the prank and the Facebook fall-out, I've learned and cemented a few new/emerging thoughts and truths for myself.

1. My eyes might be getting worse and I should probably have them tested. To be perfectly honest, I didn't even *see* the knife until after I recognised Bumface. :p

2. I have grown so much, emotionally, over the last year. I knew that, but this prank really illustrated to me just HOW much, and I'm so proud of that in myself.

3. Despite this growth, in an emergency situation, my instinct is still to freeze. This is probably not the best plan in most situations, so I need to practice forms of self defense (or at least fleeing!) enough that they become second nature as much as freezing.

4. Some of my actions when I believe I'm alone put me at risk. It is a good practice to be aware of my surroundings when I enter a room, to at least make a quick check that everything is in order. I don't mean a paranoid examination of every corner of the house, but a cursory check that there isn't a crazy man less than two feet from me is probably a smart move. ;)

5. I have a great deal of deep trust for Bumface. Not many people could stand in front of me, holding a knife, and still make me feel safe once I recognise them.

6. I don't believe in "if you can't say something nice, then don't say anything at all" - but I believe in something that (I feel) fits that grey a little better. "If you can't say something constructive, then you shouldn't say anything at all" because, let's face it, sometimes it's necessary to say something that isn't nice. If your best friend is dating an abusive jerk, you should probably tell her you can see that he's abusing her and you're there for her. Now, that's probably not the nicest thing to say -- but better to say it than let her think what he's doing is okay because everybody's seeing it and nobody's speaking up!

7. I don't need other peoples' approval as strongly as I used to. I am still deeply hurt by the disapproval and rejection I felt/feel about reactions I received to my post, but there is not so strong a sense of "well, maybe I did something wrong" - now it's a sense that I'm sad that people can't just be glad that I'm in a relationship that makes me happy, is good for me, and has allowed me to grow so much. Still, out of pond muck, lillies grow.

Most of all, I cemented that this relationship really HAS been very good for me over the past year. I didn't doubt it, but it is still nice to have solid confirmation of the ways in which he has helped me to grow. I only hope I've been as good for him as he has for me.

(And that I can come up with a damn good retaliation prank...)

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