When other people speak about trauma I usually don’t feel especially married to the word. Trauma feels more violent, abusive, and overt. I had managed to distance myself from that space of suffering up until recently.
The truth is, we’ve all suffered from some form of trauma at one time of another. Many of us are still dealing with the aftermath of traumatic events in our lives.
Trauma creates our own personal hell.
My acceptance of the word and it’s impact on my life is new. I’m still sifting through my shit. And this is my admission before it appears in any book...
My trauma came from witnessing alcoholism in my family during childhood, clinical depression in young adulthood, and a diagnosis of a chronic illness only a few short years ago.
I grew up a member of Generation X. We are known as the “forgotten generation”. I was used to feigning indifference about everything. I never blamed anyone else for my own insecurities or fears, I just went down whatever path life took me. It was me against the world in my head. I was a solitary creature and like my mom says, I acted like I’d been hatched from an egg 😄 (That reeks of privilege, in actuality I wanted for nothing.)
I became a mother at 26, had my first panic attack shortly after his birth, and quickly slipped into post-partum depression (PPD). I wasn’t an affectionate mother...but neither was my own mother as much as she loved and protected my brother and I. Clinical depression soon followed in PPD’s footsteps and then came the realization that I’d always sort of felt this way but the identification of it made me feel better about this way of being.
I started unpacking these uncomfortable emotions in my 30s and went to multiple therapists. “I can do this,” I thought, “It’s fine, I’m fine”.
But I wasn’t fine. I felt suicidal at one point and the thought of driving into oncoming traffic one morning scared me enough to try medication.
That was a clusterfuck of a period in my life. I didn’t know whether I was coming or going but I did know that I wasn’t ready to die just yet.
Days before my 39th birthday I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. It’s a diagnosis I’d been waiting to hear my entire life. That sounds crazy but it’s true. I knew at some point I’d get diagnosed with something I’d have to carry a lifetime. I just didn’t know what form my traveling companion would take. I knew 6 years before scans and tests could discern any abnormalities. I should’ve known then I was a “traveler”.
Yes, time travel is real to me. Just as real as the voices that give me guidance and the images that manifest out of thin air and hover beside me.
Trauma created the being I’ve become and still becoming. Trauma helped me see beyond the veil. It’s helped me connect the dots in a world that doesn’t often make sense and created community where I was once all alone. It’s given me refuge and sacred spaces, empathy and a new love of self. Trauma gave me strength even during the times I yelled at the sky and asked why I felt so weak.
Trauma creates Phoenixes 🔥 There’s healing on the other side of hell. I promise.
To be continued...
Storyteller | Dream Worker | Soul Bridge