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(Sensitive content) July 21 2023, Golden Road to Katahdin Stream Campground:
I woke up from a dream I had about my Spirit guide, Vadim. He was morphing forms between a dragonfly and his physical form, walking me down the trail, smiling and guiding the way. It was only him and I. I felt it was similar to the energy I experienced during our ayahuasca ceremony, subtlety reminding me that God was guiding me and that I had nothing to be afraid of. I could have faith and trust in my path and know that God was always holding my hand through it all. I didn’t have to be afraid of falling or of the fearful images I perceived in the world, because everything was playing out for my highest good, and there was nothing truly actually there.
As the night time dream faded, I attempted to make love to Voodoo, not sure why since there was the pattern of him pushing away.
Still, I attempted, to which he turned over and pushed away, saying, “You always do this shit right before we have to leave.”
It’s not like we were on any sort of time schedule. But, I backed off and went to get ready. As I was taking a shower, he opened the curtain and started groping at my body, pulling me in close, in attempts to fuck me.
“You look so delicious when you’re all slippery and wet,” he said.
The passive aggressive pattern in me came out as I retorted, “There’s not enough time,” implying that I took his words personally.
I kept feeling this pattern of feeling rejected and as if I wanted him so much more than he wanted me and it would get into my head. I was making everything so real. Especially in the moment of a trigger, I had a difficult time getting off the train of thoughts that were occurring.
I wanted to heal that passive aggressiveness that I perceived within myself and he was helping me bring it up to the surface so I could see what patterns still laid there. It seemed I really was an ‘all or nothing’ kind of girl. I felt as if when I really liked someone, and if they showed me they were compassionate and loyal, I would give them the world. I would treat them like a king, but the second I perceived them to betray me in some sort of way, I felt like I would be tempted to attack with passive aggressive behavior. Which to me looked like the silent treatment, withholding sex (which seemed impossible to do with him) and building a energetic wall. I knew it wasn’t healthy and I could see how it was my own trauma response, but it was what felt familiar to me. However, it didn’t feel good. It felt like I was only hurting myself through passive aggressive comments and actions that I seemingly projected onto another.
I admitted to feeling rejected by him so often that it made me not even want to be intimate with him anymore. I also explained how I kept getting mixed messages around him. I wanted to wake him up with blowjobs and handjobs and he even told me to do that, letting me know I had 100% permission no matter what. Yet, when it came down to the actual moment, he would often reject me or push me away. It was often abrupt, too, thus, making me feel more nervous about how he might react if I were to make a move.
“Well then fucking do something! Suck my dick or show me your body to get me off. Don’t just touch my hard dick for thirty minutes because that’s boring to me,” he said.
I felt so hurt, because my intention was to make him feel so good from the very first thing in the morning. I wanted to please him all of the time sexually, not ‘bore’ him. I wanted to take my time and appreciate his cock, his breath, his expressions.
I took a breath and thought back to my lovers who practiced tantra with me. They were men who were all about building up the sexual energy with me and elongating the experience as long as possible. They wanted to take it slow rather than jumping straight to the act.
So, he raised his voice at me when I was the one rejecting him now. I almost raised my voice, too, but instead, I used a tone that suggested I was over his shit. I intentionally punctured him with my words by telling him I was turned off from having sex with him and that I was leaving. I didn’t call him names or anything of the sort, but just telling him that felt so awful. The feeling of projecting onto him came right back to me, such like a boomerang. I saw how weak it was on my end to speak on anger.
“I’m turned off from fucking you, too,” he said, “I can’t just shut off my emotions like you and have sex when I feel like shit.”
I told him I felt like shit for so long around him and that he made me feel so small and insignificant, as if I was nonexistent in his presence.
“I can’t do it anymore,” I said.
Aggressively, he lifted me up from underneath my armpits and threw me onto the bed, his eyes filled with fury. It felt like he didn’t know how to control me so that was what came out of him.
“What the fuck?” I said, with my bottom lip quivering, unable to hide the fact that I was overwhelmed. I felt like when I finally found the courage to speak up, I was immediately shut down. He got on top of me and pinned my wrists down to the bed, hovering over me, telling me to leave.
“I’m trying,” I said, “but you’re physically not letting me.”
He pushed off of me and I moved to the edge of the bed. As I was about to stand back up, he pushed me back down and began to put me down with his words.
“Fucking bitch. No one’s ever going to put up with you the way I did,” he said.
He took a chicken packet and whipped it at the wall behind me, missing my face by less than a millimeter. I dropped my head down and sighed. I felt tired and knew I couldn’t do it anymore. I felt broken and defeated. I lifted my head back up and held eye contact with him as he continued yelling.
Eventually, I realized I didn’t have to sit there and take that shit, so I got up and walked into the bathroom and locked the door. He started banging on the door, asking why I locked it. He aggressively shook the handle and tried to unlock it with no luck. I looked into the mirror as he yelled on the other side of the door, calling me a parasite that just drained everything out of him—his balls and his pockets.
“Fucking bitch who just used me up,” he said.
I came back out to finish packing my things.
“No one’s ever going to fuck you like me,” he threatened.
That felt true. I knew that would be the hardest thing for me to let go of. He had me absolutely whipped with the amount of orgasms he gave me and how he did everything I apparently wanted him to do in bed, no questions asked. That was the inner work I knew I had to do. I really wanted to be open to the fact that there would be other men who could give me orgasms and adhere to all of my kinks. I also really wanted to work through understanding that sex did not equate love, which was something I still happened to misunderstand quite often.
So, Voodoo’s friend happened to call him during this moment and he answered, aggressively letting him know that he was currently yelling at me, as if it was something to be proud of. Then, he started telling his friend how I ruined his hike and how he hiked the entire trail the way ‘I’ wanted to and that I got him out of the 100 mile wilderness and messed everything up. He basically turned everything around on me and said that everything was my fault.
I saw how he had a way of reversing things and rewriting the stories.
I felt so triggered by his comments, because anytime we were making any sort of plans, I always said, “We could do whatever you want and I’ll follow you. I want you to lead.”
So in the moment I heard him say that stuff to his friend, I found myself projecting as I interrupted, “Oh yeah? I’ve been trying to hike alone since the moment I met you and you only just started giving me that freedom a couple of weeks ago and even when you did let me hike alone, you would be shortly behind me chasing me down the trail.”
I reminded him that I never forced him to follow me or do anything with me, often letting him know that he had the freedom to move in whichever direction felt inspiring to him. I reminded him we didn’t have to hitch through the wilderness at all and that I just wanted to take a breather because I had just started my moon. I was okay with taking it slow, I just needed him to know I would be taking a lot of breaks.
As I was going off about all of this, I realized there was no point in even trying to defend myself, because to him, he was always in the right, despite the story being apparently untruthful. And then, he said something that was the key for me to find the courage to just get up and leave.
He said to his friend, “I’m trying to keep cool because I don’t want to go to jail and get any domestic violence charges.”
That was the moment it all hit me and I realized I had enough. It wasn’t worth going down this path with him any longer. I accepted the fact that I couldn’t love my way into his heart and that over time, he would be kind to me. I accepted that I couldn’t do anything to help him if he didn’t want to help himself. It seemed he couldn’t take responsibility for the part he played in this game and didn’t want to do the work with me. His comment was an indicator to me on where this path would take me if I didn’t find the strength to move in a different direction.
I told myself that I could just hang in there with Voodoo for one more week, then summit with him and part ways. But the last second, it didn’t feel wholesome to me. I asked myself why I wanted to summit with him so bad instead of doing it alone like I always have and the answer was that I just wanted to have a picture kissing him on top of the mountain at the finish line. More honestly, it would have been a fake picture of happiness and I didn’t want that for myself. I wanted to look back and rethink to myself how great I felt at the summit, rather than look back at a picture of us kissing and be swarmed with feelings of sadness and pain. So, it wasn’t worth it to me and it didn’t matter to me how close we were to finishing.
I got my bag and left, giving him a cold goodbye. I promised myself I would never put myself through a relationship like that ever again. My heart felt shredded, my mind felt defeated, the self worth I thought I had for myself seemed long gone.
I prayed to Spirit to keep him in place and not chase me until I figured out where I was going. I started walking the road and immediately hitched a ride by an older woman named Charlotte. I didn’t last a full 30 seconds having a normal conversation until I broke down in her car. I kept apologizing, over and over again, feeling like she didn’t deserve this random chick having an emotional breakdown in her car. I felt I was being a burden on her. I put my head in my hands, trying everything in my power to stop crying.
My mother had always advised me that if I wanted to share a secret, to share it with a stranger, because I would never see them again and I would feel relieved of my burdens. I opened up to her and expressed how scared I felt. I wasn’t necessarily scared of Voodoo finding me, I was scared of breaking the bond and the attachment I had for him. I was scared I would be nothing without him, which I was sure was what he wanted me to feel.
“I’m so sorry,” I cried, “I never do this when I’m hitchhiking.”
She told me over and over again to not apologize. She kept reminding me that I was okay and that I was safe now. I felt safe, that is, not even from physical harm, I simply felt loved and appreciated. I relaxed into that feeling and told her I didn’t remember the last time I felt that. I didn’t remember the last time I felt the perception of someone being soft with me.
“When is the last time you ate?” she asked.
“Yesterday morning,” I said.
She took me out to eat and told me to get anything I wanted. I got a sandwich and a bottle of Gatorade.
She looked at me as if I was being silly and said, “Anything you want.”
I grabbed a couple pieces of candy, but she shook her head and made me resupply on all of my food. Then, she bought a bunch of extra stuff without my knowing—muffins, oranges, candy and chips. I told her how I felt she was an Angel that was here in human form. She expressed to me how she knew exactly what I was going through because she had went through a very similar thing herself when she was younger.
“It’s not your fault,” she would remind me over and over again.
My tramily would often repeat that me, too, yet the words didn’t penetrate. It really seemed as if it was my fault and I had numerous reasons to convince myself that it was.
So, Charlotte drove me down the Golden Road and dropped me off on the trail. I thanked her deeply for being there for me when I felt I needed it the most. She told me to reach out to her and that she would give me a ride back down from Katahdin when I finished and even give me money for my trip. I gave her a hug goodbye.
When I got to the base of the mountain, I saw a ranger there. I was supposed to have a permit, but didn’t.
I took my pack off, sat down and said, lI’m in a bit of a pickle right now.”
I gave him a short story of the situation I found myself in, without giving too many details. I didn’t want anyone to know anything, nor did I want any information about Voodoo being spread about on trail. I knew he was just hurting and I didn’t want to talk badly about him.
“I really just want to summit and go home,” I said as I started crying.
The emotions from everything that apparently happened were so fresh. I didn’t feel I had any space to process anything yet. He was super kind to me and explained how he had worked as an officer in the law enforcement. I told him numerous times how I preferred for him to keep everything on the down low because I absolutely did not want any law enforcement to get involved. I simply wanted to finish the trail, not run into Voodoo for the next couple of days and just hitch back south. He let me know he understood and that he would respect that.
He asked for Voodoo’s government name to which I hesitated and said no. I told him I didn’t feel comfortable giving it to him because I didn’t want them to go after him or anything like that. He assured it was only for making sure they knew who the guy was in case he would happen to come to the base of the mountain. So, I gave it to him along with a picture of both of us so that he could keep the other rangers informed.
He didn’t let me sign in the register and even gave me a fake name to use for the next few days. He got me into a campsite despite not having a reservation and told me he would make sure that Voodoo wouldn’t be allowed to summit for the next couple of days so I could have room to do my thing.
So, I started walking up the Blueberry Ledges trail and as I was walking, there was this pull for Voodoo to come find me. For a moment, I felt as if he was the only one that would bring me back to a sense of safety. As if I would just feel him in my arms and all would be well again.
I wasn’t sure why my mind romanticized him. I would just think of the way he smelled and tasted and I would forget all about the pain. That was the hardest part for me—letting go of him and what we had. But, I knew that was the first step—awareness of what was really going on. It seemed all this time I had mistaken pain for pleasure.
I never thought that I would take on so much pain and allow it for myself. I never thought I would be ‘that’ woman. I never thought I would find it so hard to leave. Because when it was good, it was so good. And in those moments, I truly never thought the opposite would come.
When I got to the ranger station at the top, I saw a bunch of other hikers there, but didn’t feel in a place where I was ready to converse with people. So, I went to sit at a picnic table across the bridge while I worked on my writing.
About two hours in, a law enforcement truck pulled up and a woman hopped out of the drivers seat, with a smile on her face and said, “You made it!”
I nodded yes, feeling a little bit confused. Then, a bunch of cops came out and began approaching me. One in particular was fully dressed in uniform from head to toe. He had his gun and bullet proof vest and an air of authority about him.
God fucking damnit, I thought to myself.
He approached me, got real serious and said, “We need to talk.”
I’m not going to lie, I felt extremely disrespected and annoyed because I had specifically asked the ranger numerous times to keep the situation private and not get any law enforcement involved. It reminded me of when I was in high school and I really wanted to confide in one of my teachers whom I trusted. I was experiencing a lot of pain at home and I started cutting myself for some years. Before I told my teacher anything, I expressed to her numerous times how important it was to me that she please keep everything between us, no matter what I was about to share. She had let me know numerous times that it would stay 100% confidential no matter what. Next thing I knew, my parents were showing up to the school and got handed down all of the information I shared. This moment reminded me of exactly that. I felt unheard and yes, I understood that the ranger just wanted to make sure I was safe and protected, but the way I perceived it in my mind was completely different.
So, they started asking questions and wanted to know what he did and I just couldn’t find it in me to tell them anything.
I kept saying, “I don’t want him to get in trouble. I just want us both to finish this hike and move on.”
There was also this fear that if I were to speak up, I would be the one to get in trouble, since Voodoo had mentioned if I ever got the cops involved he would come find me and put me in my place. I felt so shaken with fear and adrenaline, as if my nervous system was going into a shock.
“Do you want to see him again?” the officer asked.
I paused for a very long time before I answered. The automatic answer was no, but I felt like a part of me wanted to say yes just because he was once someone I loved so deeply. I thought about what it would feel like to hold him again and kiss him, but I knew I had to be strong in that moment. I knew that the same patterns would unfold. I had to bring to light in my mind the deadness I had experienced and not pretend like it was all roses and butterflies. I knew the pain I had went through in my mind, numerous times a day.
“No,” I said as the tears rolled out of my eyes.
It felt like the officer was trying really hard to get me to say all these bad things about him, asking me if he threatened me and what he apparently did. I felt so tempted to confide in him. I felt so tempted to act like the victim. I took a breath and took a step back. I wanted to make sure not to speak on emotion and slander his name because of residual anger. I didn’t want to make him out to be this monster even though it was what I was feeling like doing in the moment.
“He’s just really hurting right now,” I said, “he just doesn’t know how to control his emotions. He’s not a bad guy, he’s just in a lot of pain.”
We were both acting out on pain in different ways. It didn’t matter that he was showing up on the surface a different way than me, the fear was the same.
It seemed the officer couldn’t understand why I was defending him and not giving him any information. He said he needed to know the details so that he could protect me and keep him away from me. He asked what I would do if he happened to sneak up here and find me, to which I said I didn’t know what I would do until it came down to the actual moment. I didn’t fear for my physical safety or anything like that. I didn’t fear he would try to kill me or anything of the sort. If anything, I feared I wouldn’t be strong enough to say ‘no’ to him if he tried to persuade me back into his arms. I feared I wouldn’t be emotionally strong.
“I highly suggest you get a restraining order,” he said.
I chuckled and said, “This guy could give two fucks about a restraining order. To him, it’s just a piece of paper.”
Overall, everything ended really smoothly. They gave me a shelter to myself and came to check on me quite often. They even gave me a secret spot to leave my bag for when I slack packed early in the morning. They said they would keep track of Voodoo’s movements and where he was camped and hiking each day.
One of the ranger girls came to my shelter before I went to bed and told me she could even have me stay in an abandoned shelter nearby if that would make me feel more safe. I thanked her, but said it wasn’t necessary. She told me she was going to leave her place unlocked and that there was an extra bed available in her cabin in case of any kind of emergency. I thanked her for her kindness.
As I was sleeping, someone knocked on the wood before entering the shelter. It was the officer. I sat up and he informed me that they tracked Voodoo and he was camped only five miles away from me. He also let me know that the ranger at the bottom of the mountain didn’t let on that he saw me or that I was anywhere in the area.
I felt a huge blow to my energy field. I wiped my tired eyes and thought about how I just wanted this to be all over with. I seemed to hate how dramatic everything had become. Why couldn’t we just part like mature adults? Why did the cops have to get involved? Why did there have to be so much intensity?
I thanked him for keeping me updated, then drifted back off to sleep. Tomorrow was a big day, for I would be summiting Katahdin and I had to prep my body for the big climb to come.