While a physical move did help, and I was able to sleep well for the first time in years, my issues accompanied me. They resided in a mental suitcase along with the physical ones I carried out of the house. It was a suitcase filled with impaired boundaries, low self-worth, invalidated feelings, denial of my sexuality, guilt, fear, and most of all, the shame of simply being. I had to unpack, confront, and heal all of these so I could function effectively as an individual. The weight of my issues held me back from any forward movement in life. I blamed my father for this, telling anyone who would listen how he scarred my childhood.
It took some time, but I learned to view my “scarred childhood” as a teacher of experience. The individual scars (impaired boundaries, low self-worth, etc.) were all different lessons. Scars are a tougher kind of tissue, a very real physical symbol for the toughness I needed to adopt in order to survive. I didn’t know it at the time but I learned the soul creates its challenges on the physical level in the most effective way it can learn. So these scars became precious since I learned so much from them.
© 2013 Yehuda Jacobi
When the verbal abuse wasn’t enough, he would just slap me across the face. He seemed to like doing that. When I was ten, he wasn’t just content with slapping me. He started hitting me until I ran into my bedroom to escape him, my mother following behind, trying to stop him. I was on the bed against the corner of the wall and he dragged me back to him and continued to hit. I only recovered this memory in therapy, later learning that I had repressed this and other memories out of a need to survive.
Shortly after I graduated college, after one argument too many, I abruptly left home for a dilapidated room in a boarding house. I departed in anger, thinking a physical departure would solve my problems.