Another school year, over.

It has been with mounting excitement that I viewed the calendar over the last few weeks. Somehow, without really knowing HOW the year went so quickly, it was already April.

Teachers are quite tuned into the school calendar. Summer is usually met with relief, excitement, and exhaustion.

The last day of school, though? Ahhh. It is such a bittersweet day. A vulnerable day.

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Calm versus Chaos

When I first started this blog, my emotional health was at an all time low. I was a DISASTER (thus the blog name). But, bravely, I continued to pursue healing and therapy. Day after day, week after week, and month after month.

Progress occurred, but in my mind it was slow and hardTherapy is hard work, man. It is deep, soul-wrenching, earth shattering, WORK.

Luckily, I was graced with the most amazing therapist to guide me through the process. Oooohhh, the patience this amazing woman had/has for me will never cease to blow my mind. I challenged her, I clung to her, I pushed her away…always so sure she would abandon me, too.

Through her steadfast faith in me, I grew. I, slowly, began to heal. I began to need her less and less, and gained faith in myself and my other relationships.

Healing work will never be done. That is something I learned the hard way. There will never be a magic day where I wake up and realize, “I am healed!” 

No…life is a spectrum, and I will always have some struggles–but, I can say confidently that I am on the other side of the spectrum. Continue reading

When the walls go up

Trauma is a funny thing.

As I have worked my way through the many, many layers of my own story, I have learned many interesting facts about childhood trauma and discovered many of the reasons why I behave the way I do.

Yet, I still find myself feeling surprised when the sub-conscious takes over and I revert back to those past, safe coping mechanisms.

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“I HAVE to love you, but I don’t HAVE to like you.”

I teach little people every day. Seven and eight year olds, to be precise. This year, I have one friend who can be particularly challenging. He is a boy on the spectrum, not in control of his emotions and easily overwhelmed by sensory stimuli and frustrations.

He feels best right next to me. Getting one on one attention. Holding my hand. Hugging me. Being up in my bubble. Each day, I do these things for him because he is also a child of poverty and neglect and it is my job to love and take care of him while I have him.

The other day, we were walking together. He had been having a rough day, and his signal is yelling, “I hate (whatever is bothering him).” Often, it is me, or a friend, or school, or his mother. My response is typical–“I’m so sorry you are feeling that way right now.”

After having numerous breakdowns that day, he held my hand and calmed down as I led him on a walk. He squeezed my hand hard and asked me, “Do you like me or do you hate me?”

I looked this sweet boy in the eyes. He held my gaze for a second, and looked elsewhere, uncomfortable with direct eye contact, as I said to him, “I don’t hate you at all. I love you.” He took a deep breath and relaxed, ready to go back into the classroom. Continue reading

When therapy ends

There is this person, whose couch I could always curl up on and cry, laugh, or simply vent about my life.

This person showed me a kindness I had not ever experienced. A basic, human kindness–empathy. She saw me for who I was, respected me for who I was, and allowed me to be and feel whatever I needed to.

She believed in me.

And, eventually, it allowed ME to believe in me, too. Continue reading

Finding Family

Ever since I was a young girl who recognized that my family did not love the way that is “normal,” I have been seeking.

Seeking that love from my own blood–pleasing and changing myself to fit into the mold that might, maybe, possibly, (but never really) be enough.

And, seeking that love from others. Hoping, each day, to find a person who could help me see my own value.

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