Trauma

I wrote this post a couple of weeks ago and haven’t had a chance to put it on here, so thought I would catch up 🙂

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trauma

Ominous. Threatening. Fear.

I’ve had this blog post running around in my head in the last 24 hours or so and as I sit here to start writing it, I feel like my fingers are a little unsure of what to allow out. But since I do my best (and most powerful) writing by simply allowing it all to flow, I thought I would just start and see what came out.

I have had a really difficult couple of weeks at work with some very emotional topics. I see a number of people who have been traumatised by events in their lives, which has a pretty big impact on the body, mind and spirit. One in particular left me carrying a whole heap of “stuff”. You know the whole theory about being able to hold it together during a crisis and then falling apart afterward?

Well, I did that. My client needed me to be strong and to ‘carry’ her through the crisis. I did that. And then I fell apart.

At the time, even after debriefing with a colleague, I knew I was holding onto some of the stuff. I just didn’t know what. Two weeks later I was able to discuss it in some greater depth in an attempt to deconstruct it and discover what it all about. This conversation occurred yesterday, and let me tell you, the deconstruction was seriously deconstructed!

trauma not just imaginationIt took a bit to work through the jumbled mess that was in my head. We discovered that … I am procrastinating on writing the words. I don’t want to say it out loud … I was traumatised. By supporting my client through this stuff, I was traumatised. See, I need to say it twice to really get it out there. This stuff was huge. The type of huge that is major responsibility and decision-making that has a significant impact on people’s lives.

It left me feeling like I had a big, grey, ominous, heavy cloud hovering over me. With the incredible support of my friend and colleague I discovered that this trauma had reminded me of all the other times I have been traumatised in my life that had never been acknowledged. My history has been to “soldier on”, pretend things never happened. And then to eat. And eat. And eat, so I don’t have to acknowledge and deal with any emotions that might be sitting there inside me. Numbing myself has always gotten me through in the past. It has helped me survive the trauma.

This time I began the same routine. My first instinct was to stop at KFC. But something inside told me that this time needed to be different. This time eating wasn’t the answer. That voice was small. But it was adamant. And certain. So I didn’t stop, which is a proud moment for me.

Yesterday I got a lot of stuff out of my head. But it is only the surface layer. There is so much more there. Every single time something happened in my life that was never talked about or dealt with. The times that were talked about and partly dealt with. The times that were acknowledged and the times that weren’t. so much stuff sitting in my head and heart. And on my body.

As I have been told several times before, this is my time. I no longer need the protection the food has provided for me in the past. I am destined for amazing things in the rest of my life. My past experiences have taught me incredible things and now, as I receive one more key to unlock one more lock, I gain a little more insight into how big my future really is. I need to take my next footlight and start unravelling and acknowledging each of the traumas in my life …

  • The deaths of my parents and brother.
  • The bullying I received as a child.
  • The feeling of not belonging in my own life or friendship groups, even in my own family.
  • Coming home one day to find my friend and housemate in crisis and having to support her, and then not having any support to process what happened.
  • Being used as a punching bag by my sibling as a child.

So much stuff. And given how bright my future is, so so worth the process. I need to do this to be able to live my destiny.

Bright. Light. Destiny.

hardships destiny 

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If I had a guy …

If I had a guy to be by my side I would want him to love me for who I am, regardless of what I look like. I would want him to support and encourage me to spread my wings and fly. To share my gifts and talents with the world. To hold me up when I feel like I am falling.

authentic beauty

He might tell me something like this …

“I love every bump and curve on your body because it has helped make you who you are today. And I love who you are. You are beautiful in every way possible. Your eyes, your hair, your nose, your arms, your fingers and toes, your hips, your back and stomach. Every single part of you is beautiful. It has character. It has a story. A story of hardship and pain and strength and overcoming abuse. A story of joy and dreams and fulfillment and courage.

Your hair is soft and shiny, just like your personality. Your eyes show me expressions of the pain, hurt, sadness and vulnerability you have experienced at different times in your life. Every time you look into my eyes you show me your depth of character. You tell me your story.

The edge of your jaw and your mouth show me how compassionate and articulate you are. The curves of your shoulders have carried the load of other people’s worries and troubles for many years. Your chest holds your heart. A heart that loves and cares deeply for others. A heart that is full of compassion and empathy.

The band of fat around your stomach has protected you from all the attacks you have received through your life. The hurt and impact of the bullies that teased you when you were at school. The shame you felt at not being good enough to belong. Your stretch marks show me the courage it has taken for you to endure the words from all the people who told you that you would only be beautiful if you lost weight.

I love the cellulite and dimples all over your legs and hips because they show me how strong you are. You have stood up in spite of everyone who tried to bring you down. Those legs have carried the weight of so much pain and suffering. And they are all the stronger for it. STAND UP!

I love the pocket of fluid in your belly and the swelling of lymphoedema in your legs because they have withstood the attacks from all the people who have tried to crush your spirit. Those legs hold your spirit safe and will allow it to flourish and fly when the time is right.

I love your brain. It holds all the memories of your past. All the hurt and shame and pain. All the courage, determination and certainty. All be strong be fiercethe knowledge and skills so you can live your dream and make the world a better place. The power. The love. The thoughts and feelings. The wit, humour and intelligence. The values and reason and justice. The passion, loyalty and sensuality.

I love the length of your slender fingers and the fragility of your wrists. They tenderly hold and comfort the people who are experiencing their own pain and sorrow.

You have so much depth. So much strength and skill. I love that you have taken your past and made it a story of triumph, learning, fulfillment and happiness. And that you continue to do the work that will make your life even richer”.

I don’t have a guy to say this to me, so I am choosing to say it to myself.

I love you Ali, for all these reasons and more. I love you simply because you are on this earth.

beautiful right now

Stand Fight Fit

I have been feeling quite overwhelmed with all the stuff I do at work and uni and I have been feeling like I never get time to myself. And yet whenever I am not at work or uni I am at home by myself. This includes most weekends and every evening. Doesn’t quite make sense, does it? focus on your heart

On Saturday morning I went to a Stand Fight Fit workshop with Emazon. I set my intention for the workshop; “focus”. I wanted to come away feeling like I was focused and could concentrate on the stuff I needed to do. Like assessment pieces for my degree. To let go of work stuff, leave it at the front door and then focus on what I need to do at home. Instead of what I have been doing; sitting in my recliner watching mindless television while I eat everything in sight. Well, maybe not everything. But close to it. And then I wonder why my mind is racing at night and I can’t get to sleep for hours …

I finished Saturday’s session feeling centred and calm. And the short talk Emma gave afterward was particularly pertinent for me. The more I push my body and ask more of it, the more stress I add to it. The more I stress it out, the more it craves carbs and sugar. And the more it craves, the harder it is for me to deny those cravings and the more I end up eating. Emma did a youtube clip on something similar to this a few months ago. Very interesting stuff and it makes perfect sense.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tiuSTG8g-f8 

So, rather than ask more of my body by spending extra time “trying” to do extra stuff, what I really need to do is create some rituals and give it what it really needs; time to replenish, repair and heal from the stress it has been under for so many years. My kiniesiologist told me a while ago that my adrenals were stressed. I wonder why!!

I need to add to my goals list to include:

  1. Create an evening ritual of quiet time with a cup of tea and meditation.
  2. Spend some training time with the air element, morning and evening. Breathing, meditation, yoga-type movements.
  3. Allow myself to take what I need every day.
  4. Be in bed by 9:30pm to breathe before sleep.
  5. Spend some time in the Japanese Gardens on the weekend, simply sitting, walking and breathing the serenity.

relax

Free Fall

“It’s when you stop looking that you see things that are in plain sight”.

I was watching “Neighbours” tonight (of all things) and one of the characters said these words. They struck a chord with me.

I’m not really sure why at this point, I just know that it has. And it’s related to my previous post on rituals and letting go.

I talk a lot about trusting myself, and yet I never seem to get to the point when I push myself to the edge and I need to trust. To where trust is the only option. I always head back to old habits. I get right to the edge of the precipice and never take the step into free fall.

What exactly am I looking for here? Whatever it is, it seems so elusive. Like it’s just out of reach and no matter how much I fumble around for it with the tips of my fingers, I can never grab hold of it.

I wrote a letter last weekend, addressed to all the teenagers out there who used to feel the way I felt at their age. You can find it here if you’d like to read it. The entire time I was writing and proofreading it I was calm and composed. I had doubts about how it would be received and whether people would get some value out of it, so I asked a friend to proof it before I posted it. Her response was that it was powerful and she wished someone had said those things to her as a teen.

I read it once more before posting it and this time, to see how it sounded, I read it aloud to myself. And of course, I immediately started bawling. It really hit me. I posted that letter on my other blog 3 days ago. Tonight I was talking to another friend about it and I realised that I actually wrote it to myself. The teenage self that was never told she mattered. The teenage self who needed and desperately craved love and acceptance. I wrote it so that she could feel like she had a place in the world. Because, as much as I know it as an adult, the teenager I was never understood it. And she needs to. I need her to. I need her to truly take those words on board and allow them to sit comfortably.

I need it so that I can feel ok about letting go and taking that step over the edge.

Free Fall.

free fall penguin

 

5 signs you’re on the hero’s journey.

5 signs you’re on the hero’s journey..

I came across this article today and wanted to keep it. It speaks to me. Enjoy 🙂

It talks about your greater mind providing the signs you need to listen to so that you can live the life you’re destined for. It’s very well written, uses a lot of metaphors, and while sometimes the language is a little “lyrical”, the message is clear. No matter how much you fight it, your greater mind will always lead you to the life you are meant to life. Even if it hurts like hell to travel the abyss to get there.

So, we may as well learn to let go and listen, right? 🙂

When you feel like you’re going backward …

Well, to be honest, I’m not sure I feel like I’m heading backward, but I do feel like I am starting to come out of one of those phases. Kind of. I started the 12wbt in February last year and did 4 consecutive 12 week rounds. Since the end of the third round the scales have remained stable, despite a lot of really crappy nutrition choices. Now I could suggest that my body has needed the rest and time to adjust after shedding 30kg, and while that may be true, it’s probably more accurate to say that my brain had a bit of a meltdown. On and off it has been extremely messy in there and confusion has reigned supreme!

Dealing with university assessments, work stuff, heightened emotions from the Emazon convention in April, and having little time to sort any of it out (or more accurately, not making time), have combined to set me going backwards. At least it seems like it.

The Brave Girls Club (www.bravegirlsclub.com) has heaps of resources on their site and they shared an old blog post by one of their founders. It really resonated with me today when I read it. You can find it here. It talks about how even when you feel like you are going backwards, even if all you do is face forward to where you want to be while you’re travelling, you are still moving in that direction. Basically, keep your eye on the prize, even during the tough times.

After some recent not so pleasant events someone asked me, “when are you going to choose your life?” When it was said I was definitely not in the right frame of mind to hear it at face value. The comment was right though. I certainly haven’t been choosing to live the life I want. I have been sitting back and allowing it to be. It’s kind of like I’ve been expecting it to happen to me, rather than me going out to get it. I have a long history of that. For many years I have had people make allowances for my size. They offer to do physical stuff because I’m not able to do it. And I allow them to take over. It’s almost like I’m allowing them to live my life for me. *Light bulb moment*

As I sit here looking at the sentence I just typed I feel quite shocked. I have given away my power and decision making ability on all things personal. And when I am presented with the tools to make changes I choose not to use them, hoping that someone, or a series of someone’s, will put them into place FOR me, thereby absolving me of the responsibility.

Logically of course I’ve known for ages that I am the only one who can do this for me. And yet I’ve been waiting for other people to hand it to me so I don’t have to do the work. *sigh*

I want to say “will I ever learn?!?!” to myself. But I know that’s not going to do anything for me other than bring me down. I overthink. I analyse. Too much. My brain works overtime, especially when it comes to my own stuff. Not news to the people who know me well, I’m sure.

I have signed up to do the next round of the 12WBT. It’s time I take back my personal power. Figure out what I am capable of. I have big things destined for me. When am I going to choose my life?

Now.

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