TRAUMA 03/06 (Lenten collection 2020)

“ Is there any issue in your adult life that can’t be traced back to trauma from your childhood?”

Ouch. That was not a question I had ever expected to hear. But, since being asked, I have been stuck there. Thinking about how traumatic events shape us. For some of us, it becomes such a problem… PTSD, much?

The truth is that I definitely believe I am living only a portion of the rich life I could have because of the trauma. I sat down and made a list… It’s very painful to me but… I’ve been abandoned, molested, raped, and abused. Absolutely traumatized.

PTSD is real. I refused to accept that it could be something I am dealing with for the longest time. There is safety in denial. There is comfort in being a brick wall. There is calm in perfection. Accepting that I have PTSD, anxiety, depression and often very obsessive thoughts is accepting that I am deeply flawed. It makes me so mad. It frightens me.

Anyway, so what do I do to move on? That’s what these exercises for Lent are supposed to do… propel me forward in healing.

Let’s face it, Folks, being stuck in the aftermath of trauma is almost as horrific as the trauma itself.

Frankly, I’m tired of all of this reflection. I’m ready to put a plan into action for healing.

  • I am working on taking things in stride. I have a short fuse and a quick temper. I snap quickly as a defense mechanism. You know, like a wounded animal who is trying to bite the hand of the rescuer? Yeah… that. The issue is that I am modeling this behavior for my kids. This is not the impact I want to make on their lives. I want them to live in a world where chaos is not the answer to problem solving. I commit to healing from the trauma.

  • I could reflect and process why I get so angry, but I feel like that is wasting time right now. Maybe when that seems to be the only problem left? (note to self: pick up anger management from Target next month). Look, it's not that I want to rush through healing… that’s not it at all. I would like to rush to the starting line, though. Wallowing is exhausting me. Working on this path to wholeness is more restful than I thought.I commit to healing from the trauma.

  • Trauma is real. I am accepting that mean people did despicable things to me. What better way to overcome and accept the bad than to dive headfirst into the muddy lake water of Hell? Gross. But… it is time. I commit to healing from the trauma.

  • I will surround myself with love. The people, places, hobbies, etc that bring me to feelings of peace, joy and love. No one is more important than ME. I commit to healing from the trauma.

  • Move on-or move out. Seriously. Move forward, ONward with me. Or, get the HECK OUT OF MY WAY. If I have assured you that I love you, then I do. Deeply. But, I need to actually start LIVING. My love for others is no longer going to stunt my growth.. I commit to healing from the trauma.

  • Keep writing. These self assigned writing exercises have helped me more than I ever thought possible. I commit to healing from the trauma.

The ones who traumatized me were predators. They stole my youth. The trauma lives in me-but it can no longer dictate how I live my life. I want my power back. I want to live. Wholly and Fully.

This Lenten season is making the impact I need it to make.

Trauma is NOT the boss of me anymore. So says ME.

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