I have been going through files on my computer trying to find where I had been writing my book. I have many files designated for use in the book, but so far I haven’t been able to find the actual book in progress. In my efforts to find my book entries I have read many documents I have written over the years, and some of them are still painful to read, many are unfinished, and even more need to be sorted and sequenced for fitting into the book format. Here is one that I just read today. I don’t know how long ago I wrote it, but it strikes me as a good thing to do as an introduction for the book:
These are hard times for people with a DID diagnosis; and even harder times for those who suffer from this condition but are undiagnosed or wrongly diagnosed. My heart goes out to all of these, and I dearly want to minister hope and grace to them.
I am not a professional. I can’t diagnose or treat anyone. What I can do is share my experiences, starting before mental health treatment of any sort and continuing through today, in hopes that both professionals who encounter DIDs in their offices and people who struggle with extreme dissociation in themselves or in a loved one can find hope and encouragement in these pages. I hope that together we can learn to treat DIDs with dignity and respect for their creative survival skills, and help them to see their life struggles as the unique and special gift that God has given them. I sincerely hope and pray that they find new perspective and courage to face life’s struggles.
I know the challenges of self-doubt and self-rejection that plague individuals with DID. The truth about the past and present can be very difficult to accept and embrace.
To begin with, I want to share words from the Bible that hopefully will speak comfort and encouragement to the hearts of everyone who reads these pages, but most especially those who have experienced dissociation to a significant degree. I’m quoting from an Amplified Version of the Bible. The whole chapter is well worth reading and meditating on; but I will restrict my quote to just parts of this wonderful chapter of Psalms. Psalms 139: 1-4; 13-16
“O LORD, You have searched me [thoroughly] and have known me. You know my downsitting and my uprising; You understand my thought afar off. You sift and search out my path and my lying down, and You are acquainted with all my ways. For there is not a word in my tongue [still unuttered], but, behold, O Lord, You know it altogether… For You did form my inward parts; You did knit me together in my mother’s womb. I will confess and praise You for You are fearful and wonderful and for the awful wonder of my birth! Wonderful are Your works, and that my inner self knows right well. My frame was not hidden from You when I was being formed in secret [and] intricately and curiously wrought [as if embroidered with various colors] in the depths of the earth [a region of darkness and mystery]. Your eyes saw my unformed substance, and in Your book all the day [of my life] were written before ever they took shape, when as yet there was none of them.”
When I read this passage I understand it to be talking about my natural birth, but also the “birth” of each personality who was born out of trauma in a dark and mysterious place. I believe God was there even when it seemed like there was no one there to help me; and that He has/had a purpose for the creation of each personality. He has formed each one of us, and has build into each one of us the characteristics each one of us needed to accomplish the tasks appointed to him/her.
There is another passage of Scripture that equally speaks hope and courage into my soul, and I hope it will do the same for you. I take the liberty to insert my name/s into the passage to personalize it, and I invite you to do the same.
Isaiah 43: 1-4 (Amplified Version) “But now [in spite of past judgments for Israel’s sins], thus says the Lord, He Who created you, O Jacob, and He Who formed you, O Israel: Fear not, for I have redeemed you [ransomed you by paying a price instead of leaving you captives]; I have called you by your name; you are Mine. When you pass through the waters I will be with you, and through the rivers, they will not overwhelm you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned or scorched, nor will the flame kindle upon you. For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior; I give Egypt [to the Babylonians] for your ransom, Ethiopia and Seba [a province of Ethiopia] in exchange [for your release]. Because you are precious in My sight and honored, and because I love you, I will give men in return for you and peoples in exchange for you life.”
(It might help to understand that Israel was the name given to Jacob by God when God chose him to be the line through which He would keep His promises to Abraham. When I substitute my name into the passage, I insert the name given to me at birth for Israel and my nickname for Jacob. Any name of a personality can be inserted into this passage. Each one has been chosen by God for a special purpose.