The Cage

Age 12, shy, lonely, heart-broken, and looking “normal.”

Age 12, shy, lonely, heart-broken, and looking “normal.”

A large part of my Unconditional Model is working with an existing therapeutic model: Internal Family Systems, (IFS) created by Dr. Richard Schwarz. It is spiritual, because it puts you in touch with your Higher Self, beyond your body, thoughts and feelings. It is subversive, because “it aims to replace your authoritarian inner government in which each part feels appreciated, is free to do what it prefers, and trusts the non-coercive, heart-centered leadership of the Self.” (Introduction to the Family Systems Model by Richard C. Schwarz, p. 118)

The crux of the Unconditional Model is a new way to look at power dynamics that serves as a portal into unresolved trauma. IFS serves as a base, to return to again and again, once you enter the portal. With the help of many mindfulness exercises (or a therapist) you form a relationship with the part you identify as trying to find expression, still in need of unconditional love and acceptance from your Self, so that it can transform and integrate, and you can transform from the inside out.

I do this work on myself constantly, and sometimes, when I get in touch with an exiled part, I recover memories. Sometimes these memories are small puzzle pieces that create a more comprehensive picture of my past. They sometimes answer questions I may have had for years, things that I knew but didn’t make sense.

The craziest people on earth act out of a place of internal, emotional logic that can be understood to the degree that we have looked inside and understood ourselves. My perpetrators were absolutely insane, and they were also high functioning, extremely rational and calculated. The abuse I suffered was built into a system to allow for the perpetrators’ insanity to be given free rein, in measured windows of time, secret spaces, and organized ways.

If all of humanity understood that our entire culture is built around protecting the insanity of its leaders, we would be free, instantly.

In terms of IFS, world leaders are in manager parts when we see them, in control and controlling others. Manager parts are the perfect authority figures. They exist to create order in the system to hide the internal chaos, to protect the exiled parts from awakening. Behind closed doors our world leaders let out their firefighter parts, indulging in every possible addiction. Firefighters also protect the exiled, painful feelings from emerging, by soothing them or by escaping.

The world leaders I came across never consciously accessed their exiles, even though everything they did was based on their exiled fears, pain and rage.

They secretly believed that at their core they were their exiles, disdained and considered worthless by their own manager parts. They had no access at all to their Self, characterized by calmness, compassion, courage, connection, curiosity, confidence, creativity and clarity. If they exhibited these traits in public, they were perversions, coming from parts, mimicking the real quality. They had no internalized sense of right and wrong. Without access to their pain, they had no access to their joy, so their firefighter parts manufactured pleasure through sensation, which both perverts and numbs true feeling.

I have spent the past days with an exiled part that revealed its world to me. She tells me she likes to be called Birdie. What she showed me, was the last piece I needed to fully heal from my attachment to the American perpetrator who was like a father figure to me, who controlled world affairs from behind the scenes, and maintained a public profile as a philanthropist.

At age 9 I was gifted to him by the Belgian politician in charge of the network there, and taken to the US to be educated by the American as his personal slave. I mistook his attentions for fatherly love and absorbed them with all the intensity of a devastatingly deprived child who has nothing but love to offer, for whom the word “belonging,” which she heard so often from his lips, meant family. Next, I was sent to a mind control facility in Germany for continued education as a child sex slave and spy. After being taken back to Belgium at the end of the summer of 1972, I was often driven back and forth to Germany by handlers of the Belgian network, to spend time in the company of a German VIP.

In the spring of 1973, I was taken to Berlin, assuming it was to see the German. Left in a large room of an official building, the American entered. It was our first meeting since the previous summer, when he had sent me off, high on the idea that I belonged with him, in his family, in his class of people. The happy reunion was cut short when I realized that his plan was for me to belong to him as his slave. This plan could make him millions, and would give me all the material comfort of a sex slave to the elite. It would mean I would sleep on satin sheets and be treated as the most prized object by the high powered men to whom he sold me. In my later teens he would show me off at the most exclusive parties. I would never be auctioned off, never be sacrificed at a ritual, never be forced to have sex with dozens of men per night, like other sex slaves. I would get to feel special. I might become famous.

Our conversation did not include a list of the perks of being a sex slave to the world’s elite; I found these out later. I did get a sense about remaining in safety and comfort, at least for some years, as long as I looked pretty. But this perpetrator did not allow for any mental distance at all. I had not had a single thought that was my own for the entire time we had spent together, three or so weeks in July of 1972. I had observed that his household and sailboat staff similarly had not a thought of their own, all acting like it was the most natural thing that a man in his late fifties would have his nine year old “niece from Paris” sleep in his bed. They, like myself, and like him, had been all smiles all the time. I was forced to join him on his materialistic cloud nine, dissociate to be one with him in his excitement and imagined freedom, be high with him on his blissful escape from the reality of his life, as well as the world. The slightest mental distance was dangerous. I had to yoke myself to him with body and mind. Three seasons later, In the official building in Berlin, I broke the spell.

As soon as I expressed my own thoughts about his insane plans for my life, a look of disgust spread over his face. He instantly rejected me, violently, and forever. His change was so drastic I immediately regretted my words. Desperate to see the smiling father figure again who made me feel special, I clung and begged. He pushed me off him and hurried out of the room. In this moment, a part was born I call the girl in the ditch, frozen in space and time in disbelief.

Right after the American left, when I was still lying on the marble floor in this elegant ground floor room of this official building, two men entered, grabbed me, drugged me, and dragged me to the basement of the building. It was a very large, dark place with wide hallways, lit by cold neon lamps. Along the walls of the hallways were rows of cages, hanging from the ceiling. It looked like a classic prison cell with black metal bars, but hanging up like a bird cage with heavy chains. I was locked inside one of these cages. There were other children locked up there, as well, and also adults. The space inside the cage was too small to stand up or stretch out lying down. The cage to my left was empty. In the cage to my right was an emaciated man. In my state, I could not cry out or speak up, and didn’t have good motor control. Everything was blurry.

There was no natural light to indicate the passage of time. The people who would walk through the hallways seemed handlers, putting people in or out of the cages. The man next to me was removed and taken away.

At one point, the American walked by. He was with someone dressed in a uniform, like an army general, and they spoke in English. I was certain that if he would see me like this, the love that he had felt for me would return and he would release me, carry me out and ask for forgiveness. The drugs paralyzed me. While my feelings were all there, the intense longing, desperation, and the impulse to scream out, I was unable to move or make a sound. Though he never acknowledged me, he did have that look of disgust on his face.

In this short moment, I accepted his entire burden of worthlessness. Through the paralysis and confusion I felt the most intense shame I would ever experience.

Much later, I was taken out of the cage by handlers. I was covered in dirt, as if I’d been in a coal mine. The handlers hosed me down and gave me back my clothes. They brought me outside, to the street, where Belgian handlers put me in a car and drove me back to Belgium.

In the past few days, I’ve gone back to that dark basement, rescued that little girl named Birdie, and rescued everyone who was locked up there. Carrying Birdie, I murdered the American many times over, then had him and the general arrested. The arrest felt more right, having handcuffs put on him and know he was to get a taste of what he perpetrated on others.

From drawing with pilot pen by Kerstin Kartscher

From drawing with pilot pen by Kerstin Kartscher

I’ve carried her around in the house. She is still sooty, just starting to come to life. She can’t speak yet. She is extremely shy. Last night she was ready to go outside for the first time. As we walked out, it was dusk, and the first thing she saw was a firefly. The scenery, the trees, the outside air, and the fireflies filled her with wonder. She has only ever known the dark basement. This morning she was ready to quietly sit in the garden. When a little sparrow landed on the back of the chair not far from us, she responded with pure joy. I had named her Firefly but felt then that she preferred to be called Birdie, so we changed it.

Many years ago, I received an invite to the opening of a German artist friend of mine in a European gallery in the form of a postcard of one of the drawings in her show. Seeing this postcard, I knew that I had to have this piece of art. I bought it. It has hung on my wall ever since. There was something about the hanging cage that I could not dismiss. In more recent years, I have heard from other survivors of satanic ritual abuse that they were at times locked up in hanging cages. I sensed there was something about this, but didn’t know what.

When exiles are released, when memories arise and complete the picture of the past, change happens within and translates to external circumstances. I’ve noticed big shifts in the last days alone. I always wondered why the American didn’t kill me. Perhaps he counted on the programming that would have me commit suicide if ever he should drop me, but it is possible that I was more valuable alive. If I was to carry his immense, unbearable burden of shame, he would never come close to feeling it, as if he made me his own exile. This accepting of his burden was ensconced in the moment he walked by the cage. If he had even a vague sense about this, it was worth far more than all the millions he could have made off me. I’ve never been able to earn a decent living until I got in touch with all the repressed feelings towards this perpetrator. It’s time to thrive now. This little girl in the dark cage, this sweet little bird in the somber night, has been set free.

Anneke Lucas