I know the feelings of wondering if there’s something wrong with you. Or of feeling so lonely you could crawl into a hole and no one would notice. Feelings of shame tumbling over you, feeling dirty, depressed, panic attacks, acting in ways that make absolutely no sense, like you have no control over your life. Repressed memories, scared, like the light had gone out. And I’ve felt like the world would be better off without me in it a thousand times over again.
I also know what it feels like to heal. And to be strong. And to travel the world. And feel moments of connection, joy, peace, and clarity. And I truly believe that I wouldn’t have known my true strength without those really tough experiences.
While a vast majority of my PTSD symptoms and Panic Attacks dissipated with the help of traditional therapy in my early 20s, I still suffered from intense feelings of worthlessness and despair. When I was 21 I set off to travel the world for several years by myself, and as it turns out, wherever you go there you are, the pain followed me all over the world.
When I returned, lost as ever, yet having gained a whole new perspective of the world, I immediately fell into another abusive relationship. And when I somehow survived that, I made a promise to myself that that would never happen again. I was going to do whatever it took to heal my wounds and stop the pattern.
In 2007, after months of reading self help books and journaling in my parent’s garden, I stumbled upon my first mindfulness meditation weekend. For two agonizing days I sat in silence and my mind was anything but still. I would jump at every sound and could barely focus on my breath for longer than a moment. In those moments I prayed for strength to help me get through this and I believe that gave me faith to keep going.
This determination and belief that there was hope and I could one day create space in my life for even a moment of peace kept me going, meditating, continuing my education, and seeking out modalities of healing. Then in early 2012 I serendipitously walked into a Rapid Trauma Resolution Training and met Dr. Jon Connelly and my life changed forever.