In the beginning of 2012 and throughout 2013, I would often feel flat, and at times, it was a challenge for me to get out of bed in the morning. While this was going on, there was another part of me found it hard to accept how I felt.
I believed that I couldn’t allow myself to experience life in this way, and there were a number of reasons for this. Firstly, I had articles to write and books to read; I couldn’t take my foot of the gas, so to speak.
Secondly, I was seen as someone who was generally upbeat and sociable, so I couldn’t allow what was taking place within me to define my life. In a way, it was as if I had this weight on me and I had to do what I could to push myself forward.
What played a part here was that I wasn’t allowed to sit around as a child; I had to help my family with the guest house. Thus, through being kept in line for so many years, I had an inner voice that kept me in line as an adult.
Like A Dog with a Bone
As a result of this, I was able to write and to do other things even if I wasn’t really in the mood for it. One way of looking at it would be to say that at one point in time I was being kept in line by a tyrant and, at another, the tyrant was within me.
The trouble was that while this did allow me to take action, it also meant that I didn’t always talk to myself in a kind manner. I showed compassion to others, but rarely did I show it to myself.
In addition to pushing myself to take action, I also looked into why I felt the way that I did. And as I felt so low, I would often experience resistance when it came to doing anything that would elevate my mood.
The reason for this was that if I felt better, it would only be a matter of time before I would fall right down; it was similar to being on a high building and then falling into a deep hole. It was far less painful to feel low, than it was to rise up and then fall back down again.
A Break Through
At the same time, there were also moments when it wouldn’t matter what I did as I would still feel the same. I came to see that I was carrying a lot of anger within me, and when I expressed this I would often feel a lot better.
This was then the difference between feeling flat and not wanting to do anything, and feeling a rush of energy and wanting to embrace life. The problem was that I didn’t feel as though it was safe for me to get angry, so it was a real challenge for me to embrace my anger.
There was more to it
It was also around this time that I had a lot of fear come up, and I later found out that this was due to the trauma that I experienced whilst I was growing up. There were big traumas during this time and there were so-called little traumas.
When it relates to the former, there was the neglect and physical abuse that I went through and, when it comes to the latter, there was the verbal abuse and the fact that I grew up in an environment that was extremely unstable.
This was a time when I didn’t really understand why I was experiencing so much fear and emotional upheaval. Yet, what I didn’t know was that I had to find a way to deal with what I was going through.
What I was going through would be classed as Post-traumatic stress disorder; there is no doubt about it. I hadn’t been on a battle field, but I had grown up in an environment that had a lot in common with one.
Along with the anger that I was carrying, I also felt extremely hopeless and I was carrying a lot of grief. And all the time that I felt this way, it wasn’t going to be possible for me to rise up once again.
Ultimately, I was in a hole, and I needed to find a way to dig myself out of it. I ended up doing a lot of exercise around this time, but that didn’t have much of an effect; it just lifted me up for a short while and then I would soon return to how I felt before.
A Gradual Process
I also had people around me who I could talk to, but there was only so much that these people could do. The first step was to work with a therapist who did SHEN therapy, and this was a time when I started to feel better.
Another part of this was for me to cry out grief that was within me, and this included other feelings; this was something that I consciously did ever day for about a year. And after focusing on my emotional body, I became aware that I needed to find a way to deal with the trauma within me.
A Number of Things
The first thing I tried for healing trauma was something called somatic experiencing, which got the ball rolling, so to speak. Shortly after this, I ended up coming into contact with a healer/therapist called Ben Ralston.
There is not a name to what he does, but it is highly effective at healing trauma. A little while after this, I found out about something called Total Release Experience (TRE), and this is another effective technique for healing trauma.
Patience and Persistence
Throughout this time I had to be patient and persistent; it wasn’t to going to happen overnight and this meant that I had to keep going. When I used to speak to a friend called Sheila about my journey, she would say that I had a strong survival instinct, and I am extremely grateful for the support that she showed me.
And I would say that regardless of where someone is on their own journey, they need to keep going. The answers might not always arrive when we want them to, but I believe that they will arrive as long as we don’t completely give up.