i think a way for me to be happier in myself is to process past trauma. i never properly dealt with anything bad that’s happened because i never spoke about it at the time i went through it, e.g. when i was a child, because the people who should’ve protected me were the ones causing the pain. similar to recently, i went through a tough period of letting people wear me down and accepting it as what i deserved. because i wanted to keep people around. it was very naive of me, and i think we all have that streak in us. i assume that a symptom of childhood trauma is naivety – you experience traumatic events and normalise them so you become blissfully ignorant to other potentially awful situations because you’re scared of the abandonment and being alone.
for the first time in an extremely long time, i’ve started to feel at peace with myself and the things that i’ve been through. things that used to make me cry for hours on end, or upset me, seem to no longer have the same effect. even though i find those things sad all the same, they don’t make me feel like it’s the end of the world anymore. sometimes i have this weird intrusive thought, that a part of me shouldn’t be like this, as if i deserve to be sad, not as chilled. that scares me, because it really does confirm that we are often our own worst enemy. perhaps i’m like this because i’ve been accustomed to the sadness. it’s something i’ve become comfortable with; accepting it as normal: but it’s not. all i’m trying to make out through this little paragraph of words is that even though i’m inherently a broken person, i’m starting to realise that it’s okay. and life really does go on, regardless of your flaws and imperfections. for me, it’s taken so much time just to get to this stage of being calm, and relatively relaxed. many years of pain, sadness, confusion. but even though this is one little cornerstone, i’m glad i’m finally on the right track to some semblance of stability. change has always been a quiet fear of mine, but now it doesn’t seem all so bad. i’ve had a few people who i could say have helped me realise things, but ultimately, the only person responsible for this is myself.
image featured above: sunbeams in padley gorge
木漏れ日 – komorebi
‘the interplay between light and leaves when sunlight shines through trees.’
Since Mental Health Awareness Week is coming up (14th – 20th May 2018), I reckoned this post would be fitting. I’m not an expert, I don’t think anyone fully is, but I find when people talk from experience it can be so useful. Discussing mental health, with its magnitude and variations can be daunting. Some people who experience mental instability find talking useless or unnecessary, for others, it’s what will save them in the end. Dealing with childhood trauma, it’s always been an area I found hard to come to terms with. Probably because it made me feel different to everyone else or ashamed, as I never wanted to admit I had these horribly sad feelings when people said I seemed happy. Perhaps it’s a cliché statement, and even though my problems are unique, so many feel similar things. So having this awareness can potentially help others feel more at ease. Equally, it may not help, and that’s what we also need to understand: the complexity of mental health. While it’s encouraged to speak out about your worries, it can be very triggering for some, if not exhausting, to replay and repeat issues that inflict pain or remind you of a dark place you’re ultimately trying to escape from. So with that in mind, we need to allow people to be ready and not force it upon them.