I don’t usually remember my dreams. I’m sure that I do. All the doctors and psychologists say that you dream. You just might not remember. I wonder if this isn’t some form of God’s mercy on me.

The dreams that I do remember are usually scary. There was one time when I woke up ready to scream. I don’t remember anything specific about the dream but I know it was from the pits of Hell. There was blackness and fire and demons. I woke up covered in sweat and shaking.

More recently I had one of those dreams where you think you’re still awake because you see yourself as you were before you drifted off. I was in my bed and there was a *huge* black spider over my bed. I didn’t fully wake up until I was across the room and had the light turned on, frantically looking around for the lead of ‘Arachnophobia’. (I blame that dream on certain friends who, once they discovered my fear, decided to tease and taunt me about it every chance they could get. *glares at said “friends”*)

Last night’s nightmare was a kicker though. I thought that these were done. I hadn’t had one in months. Apparently the “fun” is to continue though. I’m not sure what all prompted it. I do know that before we left for Jillians, somehow the fact that *he* is married came up. That was probably what triggered it. (Family of mine, we need to have the burning ceremony soon.) Any thoughts of him can trigger these dreams. I may have been having them and mercifully not remembering.

I don’t remember any specifics. It’s more a feeling now. I just remember being scared. I remember feeling like I was 16-years-old again. I remember feeling his hands traveling up and down my body, going where they shouldn’t, taking what wasn’t theirs. I remember feeling used. I remember feeling like nothing more then a sex object. There was no love in his touch. Only lust. Only possessiveness. I remember freezing and feeling my body going numb. And I remember I started shaking before I even woke up. It started in my legs and worked its way up my body until I was shaking uncontrollably.

I think that’s what woke me up. My eyes flew open and I gasped and everything was shaking. And I couldn’t stop. I felt like I was convulsing and I thought I was going to hyperventilate. I couldn’t breathe. Everything hurt. Everything was twitching and spasming. I wanted to cry but couldn’t. I wanted to scream but couldn’t. I wanted to run but couldn’t. All I could do was shake and beg God to make it stop.

I finally got to where I could breathe and took deep breaths, trying to calm my system. I would think that I was getting myself under control and then I’d start shuddering again. Finally though, it stopped. (My body was still numb though. I couldn’t really feel anything.) And I just held still and breathed. In and out. Trying to find some sense of control. But it was gone.

So now I’m mad. I felt like I was making so much progress. No nightmares, barely any thoughts of him, I was getting more used to being touched and not cringing or pulling away, less fear. But now I’m back at square one. I can’t stand being touched. Even today when I was hugging the Broaddus’ good-bye, my heart was thudding and I wanted to pull away. And these are people that I know love me. But everything was stiff and I found myself going back into survival mode. I took myself out of my body and concentrated on anything else. Because that’s what you do when your body is being used against your will. You seperate your mind from your body. There is no “in the moment”. There is no enjoying sensations for what they are. Because that’s how you survive. It’s a defense mechanism and I will gladly hide behind it right now.

So if you see me, please don’t initiate touch. That is not the way to show me love right now. It is physically painful for me to be touched. And if you do touch me, please don’t be offended if I pull away or snatch my hand away or whatever. It’s probably not you. I need time. I need to figure out how to get past this. Because I don’t want to be like this. I want to be able to accept a hug without becoming stiff as a board. I want to be able to cuddle. I want to be able to hold someones hand or let them put their arm around me. And someday, I want to be able to be touched by my husband and not have all these bad feelings rushing through me. But that’s not where I am right now.

I’m angry that a dream did this to me. Of all things. But it did. And now I have to figure out how to get past it.

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