Triggers

Trauma is so much more than I ever gave it credit for.

I have spent the majority of my life ignoring it. Giving it no credit whatsoever.

…I mean, why would I want to give it any power over me? No…I preferred to be resilient. To feel as if I had conquered the beast that was my traumatic childhood.

Little did I know, so much of who I am today is a direct result of those traumas–the big ones and the little ones. To think about it is, forgive my language, still quite the mind fuck, in my opinion.

I view it as a tangled mass of yarn–all of these pieces of yarn intertwine and lead back to the center. Sometimes, I might feel like I have unraveled the mess, only to realize there are more knots–more situations that are tied together, affecting the way I act and the way I feel.

Over the last few weeks, I have been triggered by a few different events. These events triggered some deep emotional wounds inside of me–some of which I haven’t really talked about all that much.

It is amazing to me, how, even years after an event–years after I have bandaged up my heart and convinced myself that I have stopped bleeding and healed–a modern day situation can literally transport me right back to that pain.

My therapist told me recently, Don’t bleed before you are cut!! When she said that, I thought, Well, that does make sense. 

The problem? I was cut a long time ago. And triggers rip off the scabs and let the blood flow.

For me, triggers do not cause flashbacks–I am not re-living the situation or event all over again, seeing pictures of it in my head.

No, instead, triggers cause me to relive the emotion. The pain. The fear.

It occurs at an unconscious, unpleasant, and illogical level.

The last few weeks, in fact, I found myself saying, over and over, I don’t know why I feel the way I feel!!

It made no sense to me–why did I have such a huge reaction to a pretty normal, pretty honest conversation?

It took me a few weeks to realize the answer.

But, even with the realization of what my trigger was, I find that it is still complicated.

It goes back to that tangled mass. One trigger, one emotion….it is so closely tied to another. When I think of this particular trigger and the main memory that I am feeling–I can think of even older, similar memories…where I felt the same way, at a much younger age.

Do you see how many knots there are? How hard it is to untangle the mess and make it to the center?

I will keep on going…keep on working on it. But I won’t lie that the tangled mess can be very discouraging, especially when I think I have finally untied all the knots…and I am wrong.

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2 thoughts on “Triggers

  1. breakingsarah February 19, 2017 / 7:08 am

    Such a powerful post! I have experienced the same thing, almost word for word. It takes strength to keep moving forward, be proud of that. I am rooting for you all the way! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Erica February 19, 2017 / 12:32 pm

      Thank you–it always helps to know that other people have similar experiences. The journey towards growth is so much harder than I ever could have anticipated–and there have been LOTS of bumps along the way.

      Like

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