Healing from trauma

We self sabotage when we lose hope.

We abandon creative becomings / dreams when we live in fear.

We forget possibility when we aren’t able to trust in the mystery and magic of the unknown.

Recently a friend reached out in a deep state of hurt. She said she was at rock bottom and I said “The thing about rock bottom is that it’s not really a bottom. It’s an opening – a wormhole of sorts (if you will) – to a new pathway, something else entirely that you didn’t let yourself see before.” She said “I hope that’s true.” And I said “It is if you want it to be.”

I think one of our biggest fears as humans is loss. And what’s ironic is that loss is inevitable. Because death is inevitable. Change is inevitable. We fear life when we fear pain. This has been one of my biggest continued learnings in my own journey.

I’ve pulled myself out (many times) from what I was convinced I’d be trapped in forever. One of the many things healing from trauma has taught me is that we can get stuck in the body’s fight, flight and/or freeze response and think that’s the only reality there is. And when your nervous system is always in high alert it’s all too easy to live in this state of fear and limitation.

I know sadness. I know what it feels like to feel like you’re going to drown in it. Like it will never go away. I know that hollow aching feeling. A feeling as if you’ll never be able to come up for air because it’s like you’re stuck in quicksand. I know anxiety. I know the need to ignore. All of these states…they’re each a special kind of difficult.

There’s a kind of silent desperation that comes with wanting to escape your feelings but with no energy to do so because they have convinced you there’s no way out.

They are the body / mind / soul’s response to trauma. It is trauma crying out to be heard.

When we either diminish or ignore what’s happened to us and its effects on us, we can end up trapping ourselves and disassociating from our feelings. This keeps us limited in how we participate in the world and our relationships with others.

Learning how to let the feelings move and finding our way to self-worth and activities that inspire connection to ourselves, others and nature is the antidote.

But the kicker is: we have to feel worthy of healing in order to heal. Self-worth is hard to conjure if it any point we’ve been told that we are not worthy. Or if our parents or caregivers were told they weren’t worthy and they unconsciously passed this story on (in the case of intergenerational or ancestral trauma).

It’s been my experience that when we validate our more difficult experiences and the emotional and physical toll it took on us, we create more movement in our body and can shift the minds perception of reality. This expands our consciousness and the lens through which we create our reality.

But to do this we have to be willing to see what’s wanted to remain hidden. We hide from things when we’re afraid that we don’t have the capacity to feel our emotions.

“When we are being run from our unhealed wounds and fears from our past we lose our freedom to choose.”

As we begin to heal from trauma we realize that: Instead of asking: what bad thing is going to happen next? We can begin to learn how to ask: what am I able to create?

You are not your pain AND your pain will teach you (if you let it) who you are.

There have been many times in my past that I diminished my own reality. I suppressed my feelings and the potency of my lived experiences so I could be ‘normal’. For a long time I wasn’t aware of the extent of the toll that some of my experiences had on me. I didn’t know how to honor myself until my body forced me to. The single most important step I took in healing the many physical symptoms that came from suppressed emotions was to learn how to release trapped energy and to feel my own feelings.

So much of the work I do with others is about supporting others to feel their feelings THROUGH and WITH the body. To honor their experiences by naming them, feeling them and then shifting the energetics of them into more coherent states.

It’s still not ‘normal’ on a grander (more mainstream shall we say) scale to share one’s feelings or difficult experiences with others. My 6-7 years ago self would not have been able to stomach what my present self no longer censors within me.

We live in a world that often teaches us to either put on a smiley face and pretend our way through life or at the very least suppress our feelings for the sake of being ‘rational’ or to make others feel more comfortable. I have found that the more I rationalized myself out of the emotions of my experiences the deeper a hole I dug myself into a state of disembodiment.

Working with energy healing, bodywork and breathwork showed me that I no longer wanted to diminish the human within me. Sitting with all of my dark and difficult has shown me the possibility of joy and connection to the depths of what living really is and the magic that exists. And how too often I hid myself away to make others feel comfortable who were not yet ready to face their own emotional states.

It is my experience that we set ourselves free (mind, body and soul) when we make contact with our experiences, our feelings and our body.

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