Katie made me realize how important it is not only to recognize but to celebrate our accomplishments as we work toward healing from trauma.
Acceptance of symptoms from the traumas in childhood that remain have to be re-accepted over and over again; a body on hyper-vigilance which includes an exaggerated startle response, sleep disturbances, habitual negative thinking causing low level depression, disordered eating patterns stemming from age 8 as a survival mechanism, dissociation from the body- another survival tool, panic in small windowless places which includes elevators and airplanes, fear of people- knowing too well what they are capable of, and on it goes.
Patience and acceptance are not inherent qualities, they take effort and persistence. Persistence is part of my make-up. But no amount of it will take away the daily challenges. The work is ongoing. .
Out of the trauma grew a women whose voice is heard only if you listen carefully. A voice silenced in childhood, hushed by a mother embarrassed, and a family embarrassed, the voice goes mute. It is…
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My thoughts put into words.
I was enormously gratified last year to watch as the #MeToo movement erupted with a sudden and powerful force, to see sexual harassment and assault survivors courageously tell their truths as the world finally paid proper attention. I cheered the brave women and men who came forward, risking more of the judgment, doubt, and scorn they had likely already experienced. I felt hugely gratified to witness perpetrators of abuse finally being called out and made to answer for their crimes. Most of all, I cried tears of joy to know that – at last – our society is shining a ray of light on the dark, hidden, shame-filled world of sexual victimization, for illumination is the only sure path to the prevention of sexual abuse, as well as justice for victims and accountability for perpetrators.
I, too am a survivor, not of assault or harassment but of child sexual abuse…
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I look forward to the day when I can take action on these wise words.
The struggle is to make room for all the feelings and not run. That door is locked, open it, let it air. Because closing off one room causes stagnation. Free the feeling by feeling it and acknowledging it is there which allows for quicker dissipation.
Running from a feeling freezes and locks it. There it stays until the door is opened. The tendency is to escape from feelings of sadness or loneliness on this bright sunshiny day. Yet those feelings accompany me daily as part of my whole repertoire.
Note those and move on, because other feelings also exist. When burying one, you bury them all; the bright greens of summer while walking the meadow as the soft breeze whispers through my hair, the heron startled by my presence lifting off with such grace to fish farther down the creek, the intense quiet of a summer day interspersed with a…
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This is an important message.
We are heading into the weekend before the 4th of July. The holiday lands on a Wednesday this year. The firework store billboards are now up, looming huge on the side of the road, and the fireworks-stands seem to pop up out of nowhere in the parking lot of strip malls. Business must be pretty good, because already many, many people are shooting off fireworks and firecrackers at all hours of the day and night.
I understand the fun and enjoyment some people may have from setting off fireworks. Although there are many legal fireworks for sale in the state where I live, there is a never-ending supply of both legal and illegal varieties lying in wait for the excited revelers to buy just across our state-line. There you can purchase the big ones, the percussion of which shakes the houses in the neighborhood.
We have become accustomed to many…
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This really resonated with me.
The letter came, “You are permanently excused from jury duty.”
Words used to delineate challenges since childhood describe a very incapable person. Shaking off those thoughts I know that by owning my past I became whole.
A child abused is not allowed to recover. All those years no one knew what lurked inside, the tangle, confusion, and wounds bleeding deep. You look like everyone else. That is the goal because you don’t want to know either.
But until you do, the parts remain scattered and you run. You run to food, alcohol, shopping, and business, whatever takes you elsewhere than within your own soul. You don’t want to be you so you run.
Settle in, hold on, and peace will come.
Powerful and insightful words from one of the trauma survivor bloggers I follow.
Photo by Geran de Klerk on Unsplash
My mindfulness and meditation practice is extremely important to me. Some mindfulness masters teach that you cannot fully begin to meditate until you have wept deeply. I once read a story of a Zen teacher who flirted with meditation for years before he decided to commit. He recalled how he wept openly and often for two years and only after he had grieved for many things in his life was he able to sit in silence.
Recently, as I was sitting outside enjoying a beautiful day, I began to feel the pull of profound grief and sadness for the life I had uncovered: the loss, the pain, the torture, the years that I clung to survival as my only way of life. I was sad for the years of having no hope, no dreams, and no promises made, thinking that whoever came into my life would leave. I don’t dwell there…
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