This powerful article has been written by TRibe:
We offer our polyphonic version of this beautiful song — ‘Rescue’, by Lauren Daigle — as a prayer this solstice for any dissociative trauma survivors who have known, or continue to know, the horror of ritual abuse at this time of year.
May the message of this song bring you comfort. May its grace give you the courage to do the difficult system work necessary to protect and heal your people from this kind of harm.
We’re going to tread lightly, here; this is delicate territory.
Let’s talk about what it is within our power to do; because there are things we can do to protect against and heal from ritual abuse. Even when it feels impossible, there is hope. You are not alone in this. There are so many dissociative trauma survivors walking this warrior path with you. We can draw strength, inspiration, courage and hope from each other.
And from music. We’ll walk through the lyrics of the song, and see what it can teach us about initiating our own rescue this solstice.
First, our version of the song, Rescue.
You are not hidden.
The first thing we need to do is be able to see, hear and sit with our people who have endured this type of abuse. We need to know their stories. No matter how difficult and painful these things are to hear. How do your people communicate to you? Maybe it’s in images. Or body sensation. Or sounds. Use all of your inside and outside senses to listen to them. See them. Sit with them. Give it gentle time and space. As much as it needs to come out of hiding.
There’s never been a moment you were forgotten.
Then we need to communicate back to our survivors that we comprehend the scope of their hurt, and that we care. Deeply. We understand that they have endured this abuse so that we don’t have to. Now, we can manage this trauma together — if we sit in the immense collective heart of our system, where the truth is that our people are united by the common goal of survival. Each of our people has taken a portion of the load so that we could make it through. We honor their contribution. We could not have done the parts that they have done.
While the memories of what these people have been through might be new information to some of us, when we sit whole-heartedly in the place that all of our people are connected by the goal of survival, then we can replace our ‘forgetting’ with recollecting. We can understand that we weren’t able to remember until now, because we weren’t ready to. Able to. The people who have been through ritual abuse were never really forgotten; it just wasn’t the right time to remember, yet. When we sit with the immensity of their sacrifice, and our collective grief around that, we are communicating that we are truly with them, now.
You are not hopeless; though you have been broken, your innocence stolen.
Those who have taken the role of enduring ritual abuse at solstice are some of our bravest, strongest people. Even if they don’t always look or feel brave and strong. We can remind them of this, and hold that truth until they have had the healing they need to hold it again for themselves.
They are far from hopeless. They have already demonstrated the incredible depths of their capacity to survive. They have already shown the magnitude of love in their hearts by being the ones who came forward to take these experiences for the rest of us.
Yes, perhaps they have been broken. Quite surely, their innocence has been stolen. They will need generous amounts of time and space to begin the process of healing from the hurt they have experienced. Right now, they are gravely injured. But they are not beyond hope. The very qualities which have allowed them to come through the abuse are now the qualities which bear the hope for their recovery.
I hear the whisper underneath your breath; I hear your SOS
We need to ask if the threat of harm is there again — still — this year, at solstice. And we need to be able to hear the answer, either way.
If the answer is truly no, then we set out on the path of recovery and healing.
If the answer is yes, then we must circle the wagons. We must find the courage to hear, and respond to, the SOS call. We must send out our dissociative army.
What might prevent your people from being able to hear the whispered SOS? Dig deep, here.
I will send out an army to find you in the middle of the darkest night; it’s true, I will rescue you.
The direction in which we deploy our rescue mission is initially inwards. That is where we will find the information we need to form an effective safety strategy.
Who is in danger, and from whom? How connected can we become, as a united collective, to the realities of this situation? How much detail can we reclaim about the ways in which our people find themselves in this ritual danger? What kinds of protection and defence can we muster over the next few weeks? How much of a priority will we make this? What is the depth of our commitment, here? Are we ready to show up for this immense challenge, to show this magnitude of loyalty to our ritual abuse survivors?
Will you send out your army in the darkest night?
Will you rescue yourselves?
I will never stop marching to reach you in the middle of the hardest fight; it’s true, I will rescue you.
The distance between us and the unfathomable reality in which ritual abuse happens is one that must be covered over and over. The ‘distance’ is the strength and depth of our dissociation. We cannot bring all of this information into the light of day on our first, second, or even tenth attempt. But we must keep marching out. We must keep bringing back whatever pieces we are ready for. We must keep fighting to reclaim the whole of our story, no matter how hard it is to hear and hold. We must keep strengthening our system relationships and communication so we can be more ready; so we can bring back more truth. And then make the changes that are needed to put a stop to the danger and hurt.
Our people took this burden so that we didn’t have to. Because we weren’t able to. They showed up — with the most incredibly light of intentions in their heart — when we most needed them.
Now they need us. They need us to show up for them.
They need our rescue.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Thank you, TRibe, for sharing your thoughts, and for singing such a heart-felt rendition of Rescue. We can hear the connections, pleas and pain in the voices of your people, and what an amazing way to reach out and offer comfort, safety, and peace to the others who struggle with such difficulties.
I wish you all the best in your healing journey, many hours of heart-filled comfort music, and safety from harm.
Copyright © 2008-2022 Kathy Broady MSW and Discussing Dissociation