When I discovered that my relationship with my grandfather was wrong, I stopped feeling special and began to feel a sense of invisibility. This feeling did not occur immediately, but rather, grew on me slowly then gradually bled out into all aspect of my life. When you feel invisible for long periods of time, you become accustom to it. However, I did not see this until I began to look into the darkness that was eating away at my soul.
As a young girl, I could never look into the eyes of others. I would look away, look down or at something. I also know how to control the “fine tuning” of my eyes; so if I needed to look into someone’s eyes, I would make my vision go out of focus to blur away their face. My grandfather would look me straight in the eyes when he was with me; but I remember always looking passed him or at a spot in the ceiling and sometimes close my eyes. I would be there with him but somehow make myself disappear. I mean I was there but most of the time I couldn’t feel anything or I wouldn’t let myself feel. This is probably the reason children are able to block out memories; we spend so much time blocking out our physical pain, that blocking out memories seemed quite natural.
When I would walk into a room, I would zoom in on something or a spot in the room, then walk in that direction. I was so devastated to find out that my grandfather was commiting a crime against me. I would think back at how he touched me while being in a room full of people. I could not make myself believe that no one ever saw us; it was as if we were invisible. Now as an adult, I try to make myself invisible. I can walk on to public transit and look not one person in the face. I take a book, and read until I get to my destination. Everyone became invisible to me, so in my mind, I was there alone.
In my mind, I was not worthy of my family’s love and support. In my mind, being loved meant getting hurt. In my mind, feeling special meant getting hurt. In my mind, I needed to make sure that I was not going to allow myself to be hurt again. In my mind, what you see, is what you get. If you could not see me, then you could not get me. My living room is always dark; I never open my curtains. I feel too exposed when when they are open. I feel like someone is watching me all the time, so I make sure that will not happen.
When feeling invisible becomes too overwhelming, I will find myself sitting in the dark, crying, sometimes for what seems like hours. It is the type of crying that has no definition. I can never pinpoint why the tears would come, but they did and kept flowing; making it difficult to stop myself. I would cry until I could not feel anymore…I became numb. This numbness would prevail for a couple of days; then I would wait…and wait….and wait, because I knew it was only a matter of time before it happened all over again.
There were times where I become obsessed with being alone. I love being alone; it makes me feel safe. I never become bored; being bored is not an option. As far as I am concerned, being alone is time for celebration. There are times where I do not wish to hear sounds or be touched by anyone, including my own children. When I cannot find solitude, I become irritated, moody, impulsive and angry. It makes me want to disappear; and when I cannot disappear, I do whatever it takes to feel better.