“But, I’ve watched you sleep on more than one occasion during the day while I was next to you, how do you explain that?”

Self actualization, self discovery, self acceptance, knowing your strengths and your weaknesses requires truth, strength, optimism, undeterred determination and stick-to-itiveness to keep moving forward even when you feel like quitting. Being present in your life and purposely choosing to walk it out requires a willingness to stand in our moments of hard truths even when they are extremely hurtful. We MUST will ourselves to ‘just keep moving’ ensuring we don’t get stuck or lost in becoming the best version of ourselves.

Last week was a difficult week for me. It was brutally cold and living with a chronic illness that is exasperated by cold temperatures meant I was physically hampered as joint pains were ramped up. The discomfort in my physical body equalled the mental/emotional distress as past memories began swirling in my head. Chronic pain impedes mobility, this can be devastating to someone like me that have used movement/mobility as a coping strategy, a means of survival. While others seek after stillness, stillness for me constitutes fear, it means thinking, means reliving, stillness meant and at times still means anxiety amplified, therefore I move.

A significant part of my journey to mental freedom is understanding just how much work is required to reset and relearn. I’m journeying, but I have yet to arrive and that’s ok. I’m learning to accept all the bits and pieces, to be kind to myself and to take it all in strides. I am learning how to process and release and that healing of any sort does not happen overnight, it is constant and relentless work, somedays will be more challenging than others, because rewiring thoughts, adjusting moods and changing behaviors/responses after 30 plus years warrants patience, understanding, consistency and unwavering commitment. I am learning each day and I’m using my everyday encounters and experiences to help me along.

A conversation with my Ex last Sunday led to my uneasiness. We’ve had this conversation several times before, but once again through speaking new insight was revealed. We spoke about the break down of our relationship. My inability to be still was a major issue (this may seem simple, I’ll expound later another post) he could not understand or accept my reasoning, the why in which I was constantly moving. While speaking he mentioned once again he couldn’t understanding why something as simply and basic as taking a nap came as such an arduous task. And, once again, I found myself listing the reasons, the only difference being, I was able to articulate and express myself more freely.  We had spoken times before about my crazy sleep patterns and that it was impossible to take naps during the days because my brain was always on overdrive. The reality is, unless sick and heavily medicated sleep evades me, my brain stays in reactive mood. “But, I’ve watched you sleep on more than one occasion during the day while I laid next to you, how do you explain that?” There’s a level of truth that unfolds while in conversations, the back and forth that forces the brain to search the inner parts for a response, I had questioned myself previously, for I too needed clarity, but it wasn’t until I responded “have you ever stopped to think, the only reason I was able to fall asleep was simply because you were by my side and felt comfortable, safe and secure within that moment?”

The revelation took us both by surprise. I’m not quite sure what that meant for him, but for me, it was another moment of truth. The realization was a doozy for me and set into motion my quest to find how and when my unhealthy sleep pattern was first interrupted. My discoveries saddened me and added to my weeks emotional woo’s, I was able to process and accept, once again proving, it’s only through speaking openly and honestly that I am able to face my truths. My sleep pattern was first interrupted at age 5, the age of my traumatic experience (sexual molestation) escalating my fear of the dark. At age 10 (we were robbed at gunpoint by masked men within our home, another post) with guns held to my head and robbers prying me from my mothers arms in an attempt to take me with them, that set in motion the irreversible. At 13, I discovered grandpa’s newest obsession, he had set his sights on my then 3 year old baby sister, my unhealthy sleep pattern was cemented. I no longer knew what uninterrupted was like. Truth be told, I still don’t know, the question then becomes, will I ever? I don’t know, but time will surely tell.

The beauty of being on this my journey, is that I am willing to accept all that comes with it in hopes of creating a shift, a change, a new way of being, even as the not so pleasant truths unfold. I have long hoped and prayed to return to my default setting, to reset, to return to a place of normalcy, a place where I felt unafraid, loved, cherished, comfortable and secure, but my reality is, I can’t recall such a time and I/we cannot go back, therefore I/we must create a new reality. Childhood trauma robs you of everything! even the moments that seems normal is tainted, the mind is never at ease, you question every act, every thought, every action, though I have experienced moments of peace, I was never able to fully surrender or engage for intrusive thoughts were my constant. Everything good was only but temporary. The voices in my head never took a vacation, they never, they never went on pause nor did they ever sleep. Moments of intimacy, moments of peace, moments of relaxation were constantly interrupted. I have had some horrible experiences, faced somethings no child should ever have to face, shouldered responsibilities meant for adults. Survival unknowingly and unintentionally was the name of the game. Now, I fight for mental freedom for myself and for others.

I envision the day I will be able to stand unbothered, unaffected and unafraid (a dream, I’m in pursuit) but until then, I am transitioning, I am transforming, I am becoming, It’s a freaking difficult process, but I am journeying, purposefully, resolute, I will become the me I was meant to be! Join me as I/we Journey 2 Free, from my heart to yours.