When your days are consumed with helping others, it can be easy to miss how very much you’re in need of help yourself.
It wasn’t until after one of my closest friend’s child died this past August that I was finally triggered past the point of my own resistance to get help for the trauma I had compartmentalized and never dealt with after almost losing my own child. The guilt of getting to keep my child after my friend (basically my sister) lost hers and the vicarious trauma of daily helping her through the horrors of her devastating loss was finally more than I could bare. Especially as a lifelong empath. For the first time in my life, I started an anxiety medication after being diagnosed with c-PTSD about 4 months ago now.
It helped a lot for awhile. But since going back to school two months ago in January, I’ve been struggling more… (one step forward, two steps back type struggle). Suddenly confronted with self doubt about how much I can help others when I have so much of my own trauma to deal with and wondering how I’ll be able to pass the licensure exam when I took most of the classes for this degree program 20 years ago.
The stress, pressure, and self imposed expectations involved in going back to school, along with my pre-existing advanced adrenal fatigue and chronic illnesses seem to have further dysregulated my already dysregulated nervous system. Pic below is me during one of my MCAS flares….
Then Emma got engaged in January – the same month I went back to school. Within a few weeks, her wedding date was set for much sooner than we originally anticipated. My mama heart began to wonder how much more it could possibly take. She and I are so close, it’s like she’s my built in little bestie and I can’t imagine her never again coming home each night, once she moves out. So at this point, the heartache of anticipatory grieving is added to the mix.
This was around when I noticed what I later learned is misophonia setting in. I’ve only just started learning about it. But just like with c-PTSD and chronic illness, I am choosing to believe it can be healed with time, patience, and the right healing treatments.
Through my own personal experience and my counseling classes, the biggest takeaway I’ve learned is that the body keeps the score. Try as you might to stuff your emotions, it can only work for so long. Your body will betray you if your mind refuses to acknowledge the trauma. It can be so brutal but you can’t heal it until you fully feel it.
I put so much pressure on myself to keep Emma alive every day, for months on end (with no light at the end of the tunnel, until one day it suddenly came). To the point, I basically let myself stand in as her own functional Savior, (as if she didn’t already have a real Savior). It was a huge turning point in both myself and my husband’s faith journey, to be forced to realize we could do “all the right things” and it may still not be enough to save her. We had to lay our sheer terror, desperation, and pleas for her life at the foot of the cross and beg the Lord to save her, instead of relying on our own strength to make it happen.
Yes, sometimes it’s an absolute necessity to ignore your needs for the sake of your own survival or someone else’s – like when you’re at war, trapped in some kind of abuse without immediate recourse, or in my case – 24/7 laser focused on trying to save the life of my child who desperately wanted to die.
But eventually, comes the reckoning – and the ultimate renewal and rebirth. Join me as I continue to share what I’m learning and use it to try to help others going through similar situations. Or even if not similar – perhaps there will be other applicable takeaways that may help you or someone you know.
Sharing this journey will look like a deep dive into the intersection between mental and physical health. The mind, body, spirit connection is so strong yet so often not acknowledged, let alone studied.
That’s why I believe the Lord wants to use me to help spread hope and education on this topic. So I narrowed my life and health coaching niche at rootcauseremedy.com 🙂 In time, there will be blog posts on all kinds of topics there related to this (and more)!
Here’s to chasing the rainbows after the storms and pursuing wellness for mind, body, and spirit – together 🤍 XO