Trauma and the Healing Power of Comfort
I dedicate this narrative to my Angel on Earth, Kathleen Pendoley, and other earthly angels who rescued me amidst personal turmoil.
I asked Kathleen if I could write a guest blog article, and she agreed. As I described the topic - my personal experience with emotional trauma and how she (and others) have been instrumental in my healing - I broke down in tears.
So, to Kathleen, My Tribe, and my other earthly angels, this is for you.
Life is not without upheaval, both acute and benign. Whether the unrest is monumental, minimal, or both, our bodies and minds react.
Extreme turmoil can yield devastating short- and long-term chaos, disrupting the mind, body, and spirit.
Some may opine, "mind over matter," "it's your choice to let this control you," or "get over it and move on.” Yet we are complicated humans with convoluted and powerful brains and bodies. Sometimes it's inevitable that turbulent maelstrom leaves us frozen in angst, even though we wish otherwise.
Managing and Emerging from Trauma
Toxic or tumultuous events may lead the victim to two extremes:
- self-isolation and withdrawal, or
- seeking outside support from trusted individuals.
I tend to do both; first the former, and then, when ready, the latter.
Withdrawal is often a necessary step. It allows us to regroup, process, and start the healing journey.
However, this writing is about the latter - seeking solace from trustworthy friends or family who lend strength, empathy, and wisdom, enabling the healing process.
Targeted by Loved Ones: A Personal Journey
AN ABBREVIATED BACKGROUND
The particulars surrounding my upheaval are irrelevant, save one caveat. Those who targeted me are close loved ones and family members. Being the target of loved ones and family made the trauma's wake more severe.
What is relevant to my event and this guide is the aftermath of the event and how my trusted Tribe saved me.
While my description of the account may be interpreted as self-pity, personal trauma is unique and individual. My aim herein is to convey my experience and help others begin to heal.
My experience left me a gutted and hollowed mess.
I was heartbroken, angry, sad, depressed, and despondent, with such emotions and feelings plaguing every waking moment for months.
Quality of life and work suffered, and emotional and creative mojo took a backseat. Solid sleep became elusive, and daily sobbing episodes were guaranteed. I was lonely, isolated, devastated, and eviscerated.
While my internal angst continued unabated, my perpetrators went about life status quo without another thought.
Relief and Safely With Those Trusted and True
SO WHAT TO DO?
After emerging from my safe radius of self-seclusion, I craved an outlet.
I knew I could not share (or overshare) with just anyone; I could only disclose to my closest, dearest, and most trusted confidantes.
I refer to this small circle as My Tribe, my peeps, my saviors, and more.
I reached out to these faithful ones, opening my heart and soul as I (tearfully) described my encounter and poured out the pain, feelings, and heartbreak.
Each of these good, great, and generous souls (you all know who you are ❤️) took me in. Each spent precious time checking in, often daily. They gauged my emotional temperature, offered feedback and support, and shared the sagest advice.
My Posse acknowledged and validated my feelings, pain, and heartbreak. Finally, I no longer felt on an island of my own.
Without this host of earthly angels, I would not be on a path to healing.
Finding Your Own Tribe and Giving Back
SURROUNDING YOURSELF WITH A SUPPORT NETWORK
Identifying who we can trust with our most precious thoughts and feelings is essential.
So what makes someone the right fit for your support system?
- Pinpoint a small collection of trusted, comforting, and understanding friends and family.
- Ensure these individuals will keep your confidence.
- Be certain they will lend a safe environment wherein you can relinquish barriers without fear of judgment or criticism.
RETURNING THE SUPPORT
Just as vital as being blessed with an invaluable Tribe, becoming part of others' support system is equally paramount.
Going through experiences ourselves lends perspective. We can offer empathy, feedback, and advice when others seek to navigate their own challenges. Furthermore, giving back strengthens and enhances relationships with trusted confidantes.
To My Angels on Earth; My Saviors
A Tribute to My Tribe
To Kathleen and the rest of my supporters:
You've given me the strength and courage to emerge from some of the worst, allowing me to breathe and heal.
I am beyond blessed and am forever grateful to and for every one of you.
And by the way, I'm here for you, too, my friends ❤️.