Trauma + Healing Stories
Empowerment + Validation + Support for Trauma Survivors, one story at a time.
I've never really had "lunch table" anxiety over who to sit with or worried who would like me. In fact, as soon as I began to realize in 9th grade what drama would occur in those situations, I would skip my lunch period to draw / write in an empty classroom or go to visit my favorite English teacher to talk about books, life, and girl things.
I've never bought into classes being more or less than. Instead I watched humans act out in full panic, embarrassment, shame, fear, insecurities, anger, revenge, deceit and other unregulated ---> god awful feelings.
I watched bullies cry hard in the bathroom and realized hurt people hurt people.
I watched popular girls pick apart their closest friends and judge wardrobes while panicking about their own.
I watched closeted gay students act out in defiance or bullying or resort to bashing the gay community out of shame they could not join it.
I watched kids with abusive parents pass as normal at school, even though I was one of them and whole heartedly knew how "not fine" we were.
I watched people call one another sluts for the way they dress, but had sexually abusive partners or were being peer pressured to have sex by their partner.
I watched boys eager to date, so eager they would stomp on friendships just to conquer the girl like a notch on a belt and then toss her to the side for the next conquest.
I watched friendships dissolve over rumors that were started within their own inner circle.
Growing up in trauma made me see the world differently. I spotted out so much abuse and bullying that I could not bare to be around it and I felt extra terrible every time I became involved in it.
When someone bullied me, I thought of how hard they must have had it.
When someone peer pressured or teased me I thought about how badly they wanted to fit in or how bad they wanted to escape the same labels they teased me with.
Hyper-vigilance and empathy were like paint brushes and jars of colors, allowing me to paint the world around me in order to understand it better.
I spent my time absorbing the scenes and then recreating the marks each moment left on others' into the words I now write so easily.
My flow and passion come from a life long observation of human development and painfully creative truths.
J.S. Jaded Savior
Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick.
Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick.
Louder I follow the beat, one tick at a time with slow breathes to calm my chest.
I am not calm yet but I am now centered.
It is 11:11 and the third panic attack of the morning has set in. But here I am, ankles crossed and legs bare on the bathroom tile.
Leaning my weight against the wall, nestled in the nook between shower and door.
This is my place of solitude, here in the bathing room -----> where my thoughts bounce around and come to a halt as they ricochet off mattress walls to ease my anxiety down.
My trauma does not reach me here very often, so this is where I go to find peace.
I never did do well with meditation music or counselors voices.
Between the irritating tones and sound waves of relaxation that everyone else seems to enjoy, I would hear nails to a chalkboard and a condescending tone.
PTSD makes it hard for me to remember things in order.
My mind is often like a jigsaw and I have to unscramble the 4000 plum pieces to decipher where my feelings come from.
I could get lost in a 3 hour roam around target, not for the pretty dresses or cutlery sets ----> but the way my mind loses track of time all together in wide open spaces.
Nothing brought more chaos and pleasure than walking aimlessly around malls when I had deep anxiety and depression.
The fact that I had no real direction or thing to drive home with felt synonymous with my swinging moods.
And the sea of strangers that scattered about made me feel like I was not alone, while at the same time providing no single intimate moment where I would have to dig up a boundary or conquer a trigger.
Time was a weird thing.
Perhaps because I was never allowed to own time, being told where to be indefinitely ---> and that was usually my room.
It could have been minutes or hours, or months, of solitude from evening til morning every day that kept me blinded to the clock.
Lack of play dates or outings unless I was locked out on purpose.
And in those times when I fell into the wind, I had everywhere and nowhere to be til whatever time.
How much does time really matter when your personality is stifled down by trauma?
When day after day after year, you only know that the abuse is timely?
The one consistent tick is the utter dissatisfaction your parent has with your existence...
When you have PTSD you evade time in ways others just don't understand.
In one moment, you are there just staring beyond the dinner plate ---> and in the next blink, you are a 10 year old with nails tightly gripping your thighs and tears streaming down your face as the THUMP. THUMP. THUMP. THUMP. Of the stomping feet and the furniture crashing down to the ground startle you.
And in the next, you hear a voice that is no longer familiar but very much real. Telling you that you are ungrateful and unworthy of the things that you have. That you did nothing to earn them and you should have it all taken away.
Right back into sipping your water and shakily chewing your chicken, taking extra small bites as to not need seconds.
PTSD can be really subtle, this time traveling between moments and emotions.
It can present itself as calmness, being collected or just sleepy. It can look like a smirk and kind eyes, with a tight grip on the thighs under the table where no one can see.
PTSD makes it hard to wear a watch.
In fact, I always hated them.
Hated schedules and deadlines and calendars, without a clear reason why.
So I recently made a decision, against every fiber of my being, to use a gift card and buy a watch.
I consciously made the decision to step into the present.
I decided, in 2020, I want to master time.
Somehow, listening to the Tick. Tick. Tick. Tick. has become therapeutic from the moment I first wrapped the silicone band around my wrist and pulled the tab off pause.
Now when I feel like my mind is about to leave, I focus on the ticks and all other noises just fall away.
Like a metronome.
I picture a heaviness in my wrist that anchors me to the present, and travels like a warmth through my veins within my entire body.
Hot lead, filling me up and telling me it is safe to stay.
J.S. Jaded Savior
I've been thinking a lot about the concept of "whole" and how unattainable it feels for someone who has been shattered by abuse.
We idolize this idea of "whole" because we think there are people out there who just "are".
Who were born into the perfect, loving family.
Who never had to struggle without money or shelter or food or provisions.
Whole means holidays of magic and celebration.
Whole means a full fridge all the time and a happy person ready to cook and serve it.
Whole means loving relationships and healthy communities that all go [not out of their way] exactly as ALL IN as they should into helping one another out.
Whole means friends who show up, call, celebrate, and encourage you.
Whole means a job you love and an environment you absolutely love showing up to.
Whole means great health and balanced diets. Strong bodies and athletic stamina.
Whole means pleasured and pleasuring and nights full of orgasmic perfection.
Whole means all time is managed and all nooks are in their crannies and all bows are perfectly symmetrical.
Whole means never having to heal from the bad.
Whole means kisses and promises dont taste like regrets.
Whole means heard.
Now a days I ask myself...
Who even is "whole"?
Who had the luxury of being raised "whole" without nightmares or anxiety or depression?
Without illusions of who they can really trust or what their reality is really like without abuse?
Probably very few.
I want to talk about our TRUTHS.
The things that keep our shards of broken emotions taped together.
"I want to shake the standard and provoke the term 'whole' because too many people are avoiding their truths thinking that facades are crazy glue.
The truths are that we are every bit made up of trauma, each and everyone one of us is in some way hurt.
And so long as we chase our tails thinking the tip of healing is the end all, we do not really see the entire value of what we are in the present.
Not being whole has taught you a whole lot about life.
Not being perfect has helped you to grow through your mistakes.
You just need a reminder daily that what you are currently is a moving mosaic.
And it is beautiful.
So sit down with it, the fragments of your being.
And tell yourself it is enough now.
You are enough right now, your valuable insight and resilient nature.
And you will never "become somebody" or "do something meaningful" once you are "whole".
You will be invaluable now if you speak your truths.
Your purpose now is to be transparent during the hard days.
So that we can all realize we are quite similar.
And finally stand together.
J.S. Jaded Savior
Today feels like a day to talk about f*ck boys.
We know them. We have crushed on them. We have dated them. We have been crushed by them.
For 28 years I walked around with an inkling that men who like to play games and hurt other people for fun were super f*cked up inside.
But simultaneously, I experienced dating many males who were "the best listener", "so supportive", "showed up", "were so funny", and "were on a self discovery journey".
I said things like, "he is young though. He is still confused about life".
A toy soldier.
One who was programmed since birth to march but in what direction, he did not know.
He did not know. Ever.
I wasted many excuses on men who were toxic.
And for that I was deeply disappointed in them and myself.
When the promises did not ring true.
When the bullshit surfaced and then I was too afraid to admit the abuse or the fact that I was wrong.
Back then, when i was in a group of girls all giggling and swapping stories of how romantic and AMAZING their partners were ----> I shriveled up inside.
But you best believe I told stories and I giggled.
Now, years after spotting abuse ---> honing in on my hyper vigilance ---> and gaining self awareness, I have realized something so disturbing.
Those amazing stories had similar qualities.
"And then he planned it all. It was so perfect."
"And he didn't even complain."
"AND he let me share my feelings. He wasnt even mad."
Or the worst...
"He said he was just really busy..and I get it."
"His phone broke so he left it home."
"His mom was like mean or whatever growing up. She never understood him. I understand him."
"His ex was like...CRAZY. yeah. Yeah. 10 calls in a row. Showed up at his house CRAZY."
Who does that?
Now I know.
When a man was:
Indifferent, charming to a fault, inspired by my feelings to NOT OVERREACT, had me thank him for listening, pointed out his patience and kindness, asked me to restate concerns when my attitude was better, or deflected my "issues ....MY ISSUES....
What he really was...
BUSY = Cheating
FULL OF EXCUSES = Can do no wrong
ANGRY = UNREASONABLY angry
INQUISITIVE = GUILTY
PREFERENCES = BULLYING
I though a whole lot about these past people in my life and how I met them. What they did for me in the beginning.
Things like "planning the date right away and going all out" did not at all raise a flag.
Why would being pampered raise a flag?
When he picked out my outfit and his to match.
When he planned his favorite food place and a movie right after at the theater that he always goes to. So much that the girl behind the counter rolls her eyes but gives him extra popcorn.
When he didn't ask me a thing as to not bother me and be chivalrous.
Was it though?
I realize now that what I would have done is asked someone what they like..had conversations about who they are..picked something personal.
But hey, the guy tried hard right? What is wrong with that?
We all "wished" a guy would try hard.
And that was the thing of it.
In the beginning of my abusive relationships, the guys tried SO HARD. But hard was actually just "their routine".
It was a routine.
And had I not been clamored by the details and the initiative, I would have maybe seen that.
Dating and opening up to someone...a healthy relationship.. it is not a routine.
It is not a formula.
It is just baby steps into each others lives.
It consists of silly, awkward dates.
It consists of asking questions and doing conversations for the purpose of forming a connection. A two way connection.
My exs were one sided.
It was me.
I was the side that was committed.
And on their end.
Their phone broke. They had an emergency. Their job ran late hours. They had to do something with their mom and forgot to tell me. They had to run errands and forgot to call.
On their end. I was crazy. I was paranoid. I was a worrier. I had anxiety. I was insecure.
I was insecure... where did that come from?
Pre-boyfriend I felt strong. Beautiful. Good.
I chose clothing for me. What I liked.
I did things for myself that I liked, just to feel good. And me time was not selfish. It was self love.
When I got a few mos in with these guys, self care was for them.
To serve and turn on and appease them. In the way they envisioned it.
"All my exs had dark long hair. weird. But yours is nice." He said.
"I am used to curvy girls. But I love your smile. It makes me feel good."
I made them feel good with my looks.
Like when I wore sweatpants and did not try.
Like when i was not in the mood to smile.
Like when i was not "in the mood".
"Come on, babe. Just do it for me."
I realize now too that many things I took for initiative were really about control.
I realized none of the presents were ever personal and came generically on time, OR in hallmark fashion ---> out of season and with a hauntingly paranoid feeling of "what was this for?"
When ex stories came up, they barely had any. Even though most girls smiled in their direction or they knew every girls name and partners name.
"Its not weird that he knows that, I'm social and I know peoples names." I would think to myself.
Yeah. But i dont have memorized every guys name that ever smiled at me and what his girlfriends name is. And where they live or work.
"I dont keep inventory of peoples behaviors and relationship statuses, because that would be weird right?...." I would justify it.
Yeah. That would be weird. Because I was focused on myself. Who I was. what I was interested. What my passions were. What my plans for the future were.
When I'd ask them, "what do you love to do?" , "what do you want to be", "what is your purpose and passion?" I ALWAYS GOT THE SAME RESPONSE from all of them.
----> I'm in between things.
----> I am meant for grand things. My purpose will find me.
----> I tried ______ but the _____ was so ________, I just didn't fit in there.
Again. These all sound normal right?
And who knows themselves at 16? 18? 22? 25? 28?
He was just "taking it a day at a time."
But I wasn't.
I had plans. Goals. Dreams. Passions.
And slowly, the guys would say the same thing. "What will you do with that? How will you even make a difference? What is the point of that?"
This was all in regards to helping people. Serving people. Working through peoples triggers and emotions.
Social work. Teaching. Counseling.
"Only crazy people need that."
There it was again.
Void of compassion or depth of psychological structure of the brain. Lack of understanding what it means to be human.
What did crazy mean to them?
Their "ex" was always crazy.
Mom yelled because she was "crazy".
Even I, when I presented accusations, was crazy.
Without facts ---> I was crazy.
These men did not validate emotions.
They did not put emotion and logic in the same sentence.
No intuition or self awareness of mine would convince them I was sane.
And they were professional dancers.
No, not tap or tango.
They danced around their words.
They had excuses and circle jerks around every single conversation I started that ended with them having to explain themselves.
Swirling and dipping around all the PROOF, a curtsey to dodge a date or time.
And in the end, I had "trust issues" that they just had to get away from.
While girls swapped stories of their dates and their sex lives -----> how he knew what he wanted and did what he did so well...
I felt like I was collapsing on the inside.
What about my needs? My ideas? My dreams?
What about my worth?
Self worth is conceited, according to his logic.
Even though he bragged whenever he was remotely good at something. An epic story.
"And you should have seen me, babe. First time up, and I was amazing. A natural. The best of the day. Too bad it was guys only. You should have been there."
Self idolizing, pedestal type inflations about their ABILITY.
BUT THIS WAS THE SAME GUYZ WHO EVER FEW MONTHS...in fact, like clock work, every 3 months had a crying and raging episode of self loathing and would text me things like "I can't take it anymore...." and then no reply. For hours.
I was left swirling. Foot work and body twisting around like a samba. No control in my mind but my body moved on point with familiarity in each step.
Abuse was a dance.
I stopped thinking the dance was cute when my gut proved me right.
When I'd get so much "evidence" and confidence in myself that I would .....
I would prepare to present it.
I would recite a breakup in my head.
And then, I would fall apart.
I would spiral at the loss of a love.
A one sided commitment that I worked so hard on.
It was like writing a 200 page dissertation, getting the format correct and nailing my theories ... only to LOSE THE ENTIRE PAPER AT THE END because I didn't save it properly.
Only a relationship that is one sided often lasts way longer than 200 days and the mistake of not deleting sooner can cost you years of torment after.
Years of wondering why they finally ghosted you. Left you for someone and then called you the next CRAZY.
Or worse. Said they needed to find themselves for a while and then deleting you out of their life completely.
But wait... what was this dance for?
Weren't we figuring out life together?
No. We weren't.
And you should have known.
From the first dates he planned himself.
From the many things he planned or bragged about.
He was the center of his own world and he never spent even a day planning along side you.
Not in bed. Not at dinner. Not for the present or the future.
I see it now.
How the group of girls talking about who's man is more amazing are all suffering.
And I can actually back it up now with DATA.
You see, it is not about them being wrong...
It is that their words are fluff and they do not have the self awareness to realize 3 out of 5 of them are in fact being abused.
Are experiencing gas lighting and manipulation, affairs and bullying.
They did not look for signs because no one has ever even held the conversation about them.
No one has sat their daughter down and said "these are the signs of an unhealthy relationship."
Instead we were told things like "he was mean because he likes you."
"Hes a boy so he doesnt know how to talk about feelings."
"Boys are no good at these things honey. We have to SAY what we want."
"He is just immature. He will come around with your guidance."
"Most men don't know what they want. That is normal."
It goes deeper than a "man being born this way".
Men and women are not taught healthy.
Women are taught to be supportive, selfless, nurturing, loyal, and effort full.
And though there are people who hold these conversations, there are kind men and healthy relationships out there -----> what I am talking about is NOT a critique or a judgement or a claim that healthy is not found anywhere.
I am pointing out the missed signs.
The missed red flags of abuse.
The subtle hints that when stretched apart look like little toe points. Nothing.
But when strung together, execute a pattern that is not usually broken until it's too late.
So what is healthy? How will I know healthy when I see it? When it is portrayed and shared with me?
Healthy is growing together as well as apart. It is a personal journey we are all striving to be on. So a healthy relationship will be tested a lot by two growing people with different thoughts, desires and opinions.
That is actually normal.
Making mistakes, not being perfect, laughing off a hard day, being humble in our qualities but PROUD when we achieve something... those are all human qualities.
Struggling. Struggling and questioning and worrying are human feelings. Not something we wield as a weapon on others.
And feelings are valid.
If you have a partner who feels invalidated and lost, they are not toxic .... they just do need growth.
But a toxic person, an abusive partner, mocks growth.
Mocks the idea of change. Of things being out of routine.
Routine = control.
A toxic partner will NEVER RATIONALIZE YOUR FEELINGS but will always validate their own.
Not with an explanation or truth. With questions as responses. With deflection.
Void of shame.
Know the signs. Speak the signs. Light the way.
And let it be known that you are not their Jaded Savior.
When an abusive person comes knocking or texting or dancing with ways you can solve what is wrong with them.
It's not your job to fix anyone.
You can only work on yourself and not make the same mistake twice.
J.S. Jaded Savior
Love and other things we find too intimidating, so we dabble.
We dabble in hearts.
We give 10%.
We dip a toe in it.
But if it seems too cold, we retract.
No, no. This is not right. Too hard to try and love this. Too much effort. And too much resistance.
When we meet, befriend, or are family with someone who is cold.
And it hurts us when they are distant back.
When their game face is the same as their "I love you face."
If you are empathic or a highly loving person, this is dangerous for you.
Yet you are in awe of the snow aren't you?
Cold things have an appeal to them.
It is that stark, quiet, resilient, strong exterior.
Ever notice how you feel playful and happy with snow once you play in it?
How delicate and unusual it is, to touch and get a taste of something that is quite deceiving.
It is actually quite delicate and fragile in your hand, isn't it?
In fact, cradling the snow in your palms you can see that it just melts.
And you feel warmth inside from this beauty.
"Look what I can do."
Let's talk about the love and intimacy issues an empath has when they fall in love with snow.
When they delight in the cold things.
Like a child, filled with wonder.
Looking forward to days off, to quiet play.
Let's talk about how cold, frozen things cannot be hot. Like...ever.
There is no warmth in snow.
Yet we look out for it and we choose it.
Let's talk about how falling in love with a narcissist, for an empath, is like leaping up Christmas morning to snow fall on the ground. Running outside to play, no coat or boots.
Running and twirling, socks getting soggy in the powder.
How a beautiful thing, a cold thing is so tempting that even when their lips turn a blueish hue and their teeth begin to chatter, they say "its ok, I am not cold."
Let's talk about how they will lay right on their back in the fluff, arms and legs spread out wide. Taking the snow right in. Absorbing it. Nose wrinkled, eyes shut.
"Just a little while longer."
And now, immersed in the deep end of the yard and burried in this puffy, cool blanket they finally look around at the vast white emptiness.
And the silence kills.
The empty streets, no one around for miles. The isolation snow has. Everyone else safe and warm in their homes while the empath lays there naked and shivering.
Wondering how she got so far away from the warmth, how the feelings got drained from her limbs.
What a realization, that snow does not bless growth -- but instead feeds on all it touches, to death.
How the snow did not warm for her after all. It just melted away into nothing, that is if it did not swallow her whole and take her with it.
15 years ago I was attacked by my own mother, while she was in a drunken rage and unaware of her actions. She chased me around with a knife and I put my dresser infront of my door to sleep that night, which I did very little of even though I had 9th grade exams the next day.
14 years ago, my birth father stopped his visitation with me because he was jealous I had a boyfriend [my first serious one] and didnt "love him the same" anymore. I had no idea he was back using heroine and pills.
13 years ago I got pressured by all the closest people in my life to abort my first pregnancy, to fit their agenda and "worries about my future".
12 years ago I got kicked out of my home for being pregnant, my mother and her husband changing the locks right after and taking all my childhood/belongings with them. I had no identity, no records, no parental signatures or verification to get myself into school or any legal aid. I was pregnant at the time and also kicked out of my high school as well as dumped by my ex and his whole family, as he was "given a choice to not be a parent".
11 years ago I brought all 3 legal guardians to court for abuse, abandonment, and tax fraud for continuing to claim care for me after kicking me out. I lost my case for abuse, having NO CREDIBLE EVIDENCE like "pictures of bruises or witnesses to the neglect". They denied all substance abuses and domestic violence reports I submitted. BUT I was granted legal emancipation as a 17 year old and did not have to ever see them again.
10 years ago I was in community college as a
Liberal arts student with an infant in a stroller, walking through campus and being ridiculed by peers. "Who's the dad", "SHE has a baby?!", "SLUT". Then I joined student government because of my first friend suggesting it. And it changed my life. I got the taste for leadership, personal development and advocacy. I took a Women's Studies class to fill in a gap in my schedule and AGAIN had a life changing experience. That became my major for the next 4 years after as well as my life long passion for advocacy and social connections for change.
8 years ago I thought I was thriving. I was in a University studying a major I fckng loved, in college organizations and a part of the college newspaper. I was living in my own apartment that I afforded myself because of my campus job, which I also loved. I met amazing friends. I was dating someone finally. And all felt "stable" in my life. Until my h.s. ex reached out and then WRECKED his opportunity to get to know his kid. My parents reached out and each WRECKED my mental state and self esteem. My family became more distant with me and then my boyfriend started getting weird. Detached. Scared. So he decided to plan a finding himself trip that did not really consider or include me. I stayed supportive not knowing what else to do. And that was a mistake.
6 years ago, said boyfriend took his dumb trip, came right back and still didnt know himself. Tried to propose as a constilation prize, then had a mental break down about life. So we broke up. And I for the first time I was a single independent woman with my shit taken care of. So I cut my hair, pierced my nose, let loose and started to PARTY. Have FUN. Do a little soul search myself. Soon after I took him back. We dragged thru the mud 5 more months til he confessed he was having an affair and left me. At the same time my parents were each having organ problems and brain deterioration. Each reached out again and I hit my own rock bottom mentally. Feeling alone, like my world was crashing and I had nothing good in store for me. I told myself in anger that my life was only meant to be dysfunctional and fucked up.
5 years ago I was in my senior year of college, about to graduate when I lost all final financial abilities to pay my tuition off for the semester. No more loans. No scholarships to qualify. So I started a GoFundMe. And in 3 weeks I raised $7000 by sharing my stories about overcoming obstacles, being a single teen mom in college and working my butt off. I paid my semester off but couldn't pay the summer + last amount needed so I finished up the semester and moved away. I had met someone wonderful and began a relationship with him. He was my person, a great match and someone ready to commit. We got pregnant 3 months in. Right before graduation. Right before I was to decide what comes next for funding and college. So I turned down my Masters Degree acceptance for lack of funds and i moved. Once again pregnant and leaving everything I knew AGAIN behind.
4 years ago I welcomed a baby boy, after a natural water labor + natural birth. My baby girl acting as a doula and my boyfriend there by my side. He proposed the next morning, several hours after I gave birth. I wokeup to a diamond on my finger right before going to the bathroom for the first time post delivery [fun times, now that's a push present] . My life was changed again forever. He had a business of his own and wanted me to be his partner. In work, parenthood, and life. I had left behind years of college, friendships, and personal growth to now grow a family. And for once, no dysfunction occured. No worries. Just love.
3 years ago we became pregnant with baby #2. One we both wished and planned for, our wishes answered the first month we tried. We announced at Thanksgiving how thankful we were for our family, our business, and our baby becoming a big brother. Everyone cried. It was the first announcement in my life that included happy tears and no judgement from anywhere. That year we LOVED our business, our life, and our growing blessings.
2 years ago everything crumbled. With 2 little kids, a preteen, and a super full time career ---> our marriage, parentlife and persona identities all felt the toll of never having a break or any joy in our days. All we did was work and fight. Fight to survive. Fight over emotional needs not met. Fight over our future. And again everything felt shaky. But we decided to hang in there and just keep working HARD. Hard work pays off, right?
1 year ago my husband grabbed me in his arms and said "sit, we need to talk". And my head spun as I heard him tell me we needed to LEAVE everything again. Leave the job. Leave the location. Possibly leave home. He had big debts, big stress, and personal health issues. He had watched me put my ALL into things that failed me. From business ideas to projects that fell apart, I was miserable. But I just kept pushing thru the anger and sadness. I kept saying "I hate everything". DAILY. OUT LOUD. So we stopped everything. And we went back to the house to regroup. We decided to try working from home. To give ourselves a break. And we never went back.
6 months ago I was a stay at home mom, with my only focus daily to be my kids and house chores. It was the most calm, simple way I ever lived. No dysfunction. No harm. No worries. And yet, I was in a deep depression. I cried daily. I hid in the bathroom as often as I could. I hated myself. I hated living. I felt lethargic, angry, tired, worthless, and completely burnt out.
The quiet brought on bad flashbacks and feelings, as well as old nightmares about my parents.
And then, my mom reached out. Right before mothers day and right around the time her own mom was dying in hospice. At first, she was kind and calm in her messages. She asked how I was. Told me she was happy I was ok. [She is mentally ill and an alcoholic] She told me she was planning on getting her own place after her divorce [with my abusive and narcissistic stepfather]. And she asked if she could just stay in touch by text, to know I was ok.
I was at my lowest mentally and I began to let her into my mind. My heart. I convinced myself it was a good idea to text her. To let her know I had a great life. Kids. A loving husband. Then her mom passed. And her texts to me got aggressive. Incoherent.
This lasted for a few weeks. Until one day she was super apologetic about her wrongs in life. The ones she could remember at least. And then said she couldn't go on. She made me think she was suicidal, something I had witnessed many times growing up.
And then, she stopped replying. My mind went wild. I was hysterical. Over someone I hated. But the idea of her submitting her last texts to me drove me nuts. I decided to call a local suicide prevention center and report it. I was so scared for her. Her losing her mother, her marriage and home, her daughter---> her whole life NOTHING. I felt like she was doing it for real. The center I called said they would contact her and take care of it. Hours later she responded saying she had been shopping. She asked why I sent so many freaking out texts. She had played me. So I blocked her. I blocked her emotionally. And literally from my phone.
Then I leaped onto my first Facebook live to talk about it. I made a clear decision to face my shit. Face that shit. And talk about it.
That month I began my blog about trauma. I wrote many hard, emotional stories in order to get them off my chest and out into the universe. And it all began.
Writing + daily digging into my trauma + healing all began.
I sit here now working from home daily doing WHAT I LOVE. I write, I connect with others, and I empower survivors to share their stories.
I am now working on 2 different books ---> one about my life with PTSD after prolonged trauma, the other a healing guide for Trauma Survivors.
I have lost weight + changed my diet + exchanged coffee for hemp shakes + journal and write regularly as well as use Facebook daily for spiritual and personal growth.
I have a great marriage with someone who believed in me and has encouraged me to follow this passion. He cannot wait for me to grow and prosper in it. And he now talks /pulls apart his own traumas / experiences. Something we did not expect when I dove into this field but now helps us both.
My kids now see a mom who wakes with passion + purpose. I am calmer, no longer retreat to the bathroom, and cry when I decide to write + activate those emotions for healing purposes. I make time for myself. I care for myself. And so, I am a better caretaker for them. We get out to the library and take walks together. We utilize our days to plan quality time AND my blog/healing work.
I am tackling my problems. I am remembering these hard memories and calling on my past trauma so I can unpack it with love and kindness.
I am addressing who I have been in the different stages of my life. I am setting boundaries. I am cutting out toxic people. And I am giving myself the fighting chance to improve.
I sit here now blessed to get to do what I love daily because I got myself here. Every step of the way, every hard obstacle all got me to here. And the people who loved me, mentored me, taught me, or held me under their wing for guidance all got me here. My loving husband and kids got me here. Most of all, the releasing of my own blocks has gotten me here.
It is scary to write our truths. To reveal the things that made us feel weak or pathetic. We hide under our clothing a lifetime of scars and pain. But not sharing is the vice we remain hooked to, lying to ourselves by saying it is a form of protection from the world.
To hide is not to be safe. It is to be stuck.
I do NOT want to be STUCK.
My whole past consisted of humoring all the negative, toxic, stuck people in my life.
Allowing people who either consume, tolerate or are the dysfunctional part of their own lives to JUDGE OR CRITICIZE ME was ludacris.
Allowing people who are too afraid to LEAP into healthy choices... it was hypocritical.
I will never be stuck, so long as I always remind myself that I am a fighter. That my intuition and gut KNOW what is right.
I will ALWAYS prevail, so long as I make healthy and safe choices for my life and my family.
The act of getting "unstuck" is a CHOICE.
And now, I live for movement + awareness + clarity. ♡
Your life is comprised of all these moments.
Make your next moment one that elevates you beyond who you assume you are right now.
What you only THINK you are STUCK in. Your blocks only stop you if you let them. ♡
Being a Trauma survivor, I have had major issues with:
➸ IRRATIONAL FEARS
➸ LACK OF AUTHORITY
➸ LACK OF FAITH
➸ LOSS OF SPIRIT
☣☠ Trauma had me convinced I was not "normal" and that everything was dangerous or suspicious.
When someones' body language or voice or facial expressions gave me a hint of discomfort or sense of suspicion, I immediately withdrew myself from them or the situation.
But a lot of times I was just being triggered and feeling uncomfortable due to something I did not want to confront.
Maybe it was insecurities about myself or a lack of personal growth in a certain area, a weak spot I just refused to confront.
But all I knew was my gut was saying HECK NO -- BACK UP.
I wish I could go back to those moments, like pin tacks on a map in a murder hunt marking all the places I died a little inside.
All those significant little blips on a map that killed off my ability to trust, grow or learn.
I did not know that resistance could keep me from personal growth.
All I learned growing up in a dangerous and abusive household was that I had to steer clear of anything that put me in a position to be hurt. Whether physical, mental or emotional pain was about to take place.
I felt those triggers and pains frequently. When you have a parent that yells, throws china at the wall and tears down the entertainment center in a drunken rage on a nightly basis, you quickly develop an understanding of why some of the smallest and sweetest looking animals have quills.
Danger is lurking everywhere when you are in the land of predators, and even your own biological parents could potentially take you out.
As I grew, that fear and distrust built a wall around me.
Though I would have labeled myself as outgoing and sociable at the time, I realize I had a LOT of symptoms of PTSD and depression.
I kept myself at bay and kept the people in my life convinced I was ok by being an overachiever.
I also tried to have an eternally happy disposition all the dang time. Regardless of what was in my path, everyone saw me as successful and capable. As someone who evaded the path of pain trauma leaves people with. Because I applied myself. Because I was out doing things.
But I did things that served my comfort zones, not my true goals.
I just skated safely in the area of what I truly wanted.
I tried to fit in and keep myself busy.
I spent money on looking the part and being the role I felt I needed to be in order to pass as fine.
As happy and well adjusted.
The truth was hidden in what I did when no one was around.
In the ways, I could not be alone or in when I was alone and just crumbled in my emotions.
The truth was hidden in the times I did not cry or felt numb at things that are appropriately sad or scary.
And more so at my complete self-reliance because I could not let people in to care for me.
I had to prove I could do things all alone.
I had to prove that I could be more than a statistic or a stigma as a teen mom and then a single mom in college.
I was successful and I did A LOT. I wanted to work and go to classes full time. In fact, I piled way too much responsibility on myself and then in my free time went out or hung around friends ---- because I did not want to be alone with myself in my little apartment.
The silence and the darkness would eat at me and I would have flashbacks, panic attacks, deep depression and spirals.
My chores would pile up and my responsibilities would crush me every single time we had a vacation or off time from classes.
I did not know how to lean into myself or who I was. I was hollow when I actually humored my thoughts. I did not know who I was past the many things I was constantly doing.
And so everything reflected that.
Tons of unfinished projects and things that needed to get done pushed to the side all to appease my comfort zone.
Taking way too long or putting off the hard things.
I finally had to face it all this year when I finally experienced quiet --- lack of chaos and that long list of things to do --- and that made me very quickly hit rock bottom.
Realizing my lack of trust, lack of hard experiences or avoidance of hard things ----> It all pushed a rage and depression out of me that I never experienced before.
And suddenly once again I did not know who I was when I looked in the mirror.
Every day I literally said out loud that I hated everything.
"I hate this..." I would cry out... " I hate myself.."
And that mood would rub off on my partner, my kids.. my work..
I finally had to face myself.
And do something unexpected.
I had to admit my flaws and my truths.
To admit the bullshit...and STOP all the spiraling thoughts about not being good enough.
The truth was, I was just living in a constant loop of self-destruction but finally got so exhausted I gave up altogether. For a few days I did not shower, did not want to eat, and could not be near anyone. I did not want to have to even get out of bed. Or talk to my kids.
It was fucking hard and shameful.
But I am so thankful now I leaned in and let it happen.
I allowed myself to let go of control and chaos.. to just FALL. HARD, ON MY FACE.
And then.... like an instinct kicking in, I was able to get back up.
I got up enough to wash myself and have a hard F*cking cry in the shower.
Then I made a conscious decision to change.
Not just my mindset and my present time, but my story.
So I sat at the computer and I started to type.
I wrote out feelings and memories.
I cried all the way through it.
But I just kept writing and pouring out my soul.
And in that out pour came inspiration for my new path.
Finally the right direction.
With honesty, vulnerability, and healing that I never before realized were the pieces missing in who I was.
I realized I needed to find myself in words where my own mind could not keep them trapped or confused.
A place to write and RELEASE.
IT has been a few months now and a NEW season since that meltdown.
And I can truly say I feel 100 years ahead of who and what I was then.
I have learned since that those bullshit traits I was trying to convince myself made up who I was were just that -- bullshit reactions to TRAUMA. My brain was trauma trained since childhood and I never knew better.. not until now.
And now that I am informed, being educated daily and living intentionally with the purpose of healing and growing ---> My soul is ignited with such purpose and LOVE.
All the excuses in the past and fears I had are just falling, as I molt those old identities and truths.
Truth is I no longer need them.
Where I am heading, who I am stepping into literally has to pack light.
I have no room for :
➸ TRUST ISSUES
➸ CONTROL ISSUES
➸ RESISTANCE ISSUES
➸ IRRATIONAL FEARS
➸ LACK OF AUTHORITY
➸ LACK OF FAITH
➸ LOSS OF SPIRIT
My heart is so full every day of:
And I cannot sell some PILL, CLASS, PROGRAM, OR BEVERAGE to provide just made these things.....
I did not drink a Koolade or find a magic potion.
I made a promise to myself and then I honored it.
That is how my healing journey began.
Now my gratitude reminds me daily that it is SO easy to change.
To be reborn.
And I am forever changed, with motivation to write and so many stories yet to be told.
J.S. Jaded Savior📷
J.S. Jaded Savior
J.S. Trauma + Healing Stories
A collective of stories about Trauma + Healing, to promote awareness, validation and support for Trauma Survivors.
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.
Jean Grey is a pen name that I use across socials and as a writer at my own discretion. Jean is my birth name and Grey is a symbolic addition I chose for significance to my identity.
Questions? Contact Jean at: email@example.com
EMPOWERING MINDS SINCE 2019
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED 2022