A Collective of memoirs by J.S. about Trauma + Mental Health + Abuse + Healing.
I do not cry when people around me die or lose it when people leave me. For years I was scared of this non-expression and then realized it was disassociation.
I have been a chronic coping robot for so long, with a calm face and exterior, that it has become difficult to have the right reaction or let out my emotions during a safe time ( or while in a safe space).
I have pain in my body and aches that feel unexplainable since I am a young, limber adult with no physical ailments or broken bones/injuries to ever speak of.
I did not realize my body stored all the trauma and pain left from abuse within my back, neck, shoulders, and knees.
I was never taught how the body contains our emotional pains and insecurities, so I grew up thinking something was seriously wrong with me.
Every time I saw a doctor and complained about aches or irritations, I was told my numbers and tests were extremely average and "fine".
For X amount of years, every professional I have ever seen has convinced me that light exercise and a healthy diet will provide me with a healthy lifestyle.
Not one has looked me in the eyes and said, "You dear have stored trauma and need to heal".
How was I ever supposed to know I had problems after leaving my abusers when the only people who saw me all thought I passed as normal?
I have said these things as well as heard them over the years.
I had no idea I had PTSD until last year, at 28 years old, when a professional diagnosed me after examination and a session.
I knew depression was a thing and that anxiety was a way people "behaved".
I "expressed" anxiety characteristics.
I did not label myself as PTSD + DEPRESSION + ANXIETY until someone trained saw it all over me and said to me directly, "I can hear it in your voice."
And it was not a silly little comment.
It blew the lid right off my sealed tight suppression of trauma.
I fell headfirst into pulling apart my problems and had to dig deep into my experiences to figure out where it all started.
IT was not a difficult dig. The hard part was connecting my past to my present.
I had to BECOME aware of my current behaviors and emotions.
In the past, I had thought about my experiences as a child and adolescent. When I had "lived with the abuse".
I thought leaving at 16 meant I had left abuse.
Turns out I received abuse by many people after because I was unaware of the red flags or how susceptible I was to it.
NO ONE TELLS YOU THESE THINGS.
I passed as normal for everybody.
I was outspoken. Confident. Funny. Smiled often. Social.
I put myself out there and took chances as an independent young adult.
NOTHING pointed to me having problems with abuse.
Piled up laundry for days = most adults and almost all college kids, so not weird.
Idiot college boyfriend problems = well, every girl around me in a relationship with a peer seemed to have similar issues so that seemed normal too.
Struggle to keep up with ALL responsibilities = every college kid, everywhere.
Nights of insomnia or days of wanting to sleep mid-day = every college kid everywhere.
I totally PASSED AS FINE.
I did not know until last year because I had never been around a professional that was Trauma trained.
I had talked about my past abuse to other survivors, not on purpose but just in conversating with peers. And not many people could really imagine what it was like, but thought I had "turned out fine".
Others thought it was somewhat normal because they had grown up with abuse too.
But they did not call it abuse. Just "childhood".
These are the reasons now I am thankful for starting a healing journey through holistic and spiritual practices.
I am learning for the first time what trauma LOOKS, SOUNDS, and FEELS like.
Through this newfound awareness, I am building a new relationship with myself and understanding my personality in a whole new way.
It is like I am able to now dissect myself from the trauma.
Separate what is "me" from what is "unhealthy" and then DECIDE who I want to be as I heal.
That feeling of self-transformation is so powerful and I owe it all to education in trauma. But I also owe it to taking matters into my own hands after being diagnosed.
The best thing we can do for ourselves is to SEEK knowledge and then APPLY IT.
J.S. Jaded Savior
Content mention of Rape, Abuse, Neglect, Addictions, Mental Illness, Kidnap, Molestation, Child abuse, Teen Pregnancy, Abortion, birth, body image, gender/identity dysphoria, sexuality, personal trauma, domestic violence and other extremely personal stories. Please practice caution. I am not a licensed physician or mental health professional. No medical prescribing is provided on this site, Only personal insights, experience stories, and advice; All stories published have had prior authorization. Questions? Contact Jean at: firstname.lastname@example.org
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