This poem was written to bring comfort to those individuals who deal with PTSD/trauma on a daily basis, and they feel like they’re in the “Stuck Aspect” of Trauma. Although we feel like we are trapped, we know that God’s presence is always there. It is a representation of the dialog between the trauma impacted individual and God himself.
“I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. 2 Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit, He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit, He prunes it so that it may bear more fruit. 3 You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you. 4 Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me. 5 I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing. 6If anyone does not abide in Me, he is thrown away as a branch and dries up; and they gather them, and cast them into the fire and they are burned.
Stuck Inside Message of Hope
7 If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. 8 My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit, and so prove to be My disciples. 9 Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love. 10 If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love; just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love. 11 These things I have spoken to you so that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be made full.
There is nothing worse than feeling stuck. Literally stuck! Sometimes we have a zipper that is stuck. When it happens, it is usually when we are in a hurry. So, what we do is to keep pulling and tugging on the zipper, creating a worse situation. Then, we pull long where we end up with extra material in the way of the zipper, and the next thing you know, we have a ripped coat and a stuck zipper.
How about being stuck in an elevator? I don’t like elevators myself, and so the thought of being stuck on one just makes me feel claustrophobic and helpless. And of course, for people who have been stuck on elevators, their first reaction is to panic. Lastly, what about feeling stuck in a relationship? There is nothing worse than feeling powerless, and not realizing that you do have options. However, you have grown so used to dysfunction, that you don’t know what it is even like to exert boundaries, and explore these options.
Today’s topic, “The Stuck Aspect”, deals with a dissociated state of trauma. In this state you end up feeling helpless, trapped, and not sure of how to proceed, where to go, or when to go. We will explore two aspects of this state: the stuck inside and the stuck outside aspect.
STuck Outside Aspect
The Stuck Outside aspect of trauma is when you are dissociating, and having an experience where you are “outside” of yourself. This experience makes you feel like you are watching yourself as if you are watching a movie, but you are not part of the movie where all of you is integrated together.
I first experienced this when I was living at my last place of residence, and trauma was reigning, and in the forefront of my life. Basically, I was in survival mode. I hadn’t done much work in the area of healing because of being afraid to face my feelings, possible retraumatization, and fear. I had all of this going on coupled with the fact that I had just been released from working in a toxic environment for nine months. When it happened, I felt out of control, and I started feeding more into it, with the anxiety from trauma escalating.
It continued to occur when I moved to the residence that I am living at now. However, I realized how to manage the symptoms better. Instead of panicking more, I started to remind myself that I was fine, and of the status of my present surroundings and situation. This created a calm inside of my brain, and then it would pass.
Stuck Inside Aspect
The stuck inside aspect deals with you feeling like you are trapped inside of your body. People on the outside can see from your facial expression, or the lack thereof, that something is wrong, but they aren’t sure of how to handle it. You feel like your whole body has gone stiff as a board, and you can tell that your eyes are doing something weird. This might sound strange, but I have also noticed that since having trauma, eating certain foods can bring this on.
I was at a worship service with a friend right before Christmas a couple of years ago, and it happened right after I’d finishing eating. I could tell that she was trying to figure out what was going on, because I saw her staring into my eyes, trying to figure out if I was okay. Once again, I grounded myself in my location, and in the present moment, and I told myself that I would be fine, that it had happened before, and to just let it pass. It eventually passed. However, it had definitely caught me off guard.
Have you ever found yourself in the “Stuck Inside” or “Stuck Outside” Aspect of trauma. And if so, what did you do to calm yourself down? What was the reaction of others around you? Would love to hear your thoughts!
When we think of separation, it brings up pain and sadness. However, when we are separated for the cause of Christ, it changes everything. For to live is Christ, and to die is gain. We have the Father’s love to guide us as we run our race of endurance.
There are a lot of voices that we hear on a daily basis. However, discerning the voice of God becomes the most important one that we need to focus on. Do we know what to look for? Is it the same voice for everyone? These questions and more will be answered in this week’s episode: Hearing God’s Voice in the Midst of Chaos.
How to Know It’s God
How God Speaks to Me
Truths on Hearing God’s Voice
Samuel and the Voice of God
Part #1 Hearing God’s Voice
Good afternoon! Welcome to Valley of Grace’s Healing Our Brokenness Podcast! Today we are on episode 18, entitled, Hearing God’s Voice in the Midst of Chaos. When we think about hearing God, we often associate it with the Ten Commandments movie where God spoke to Moses on the mountain. Sometimes God is just that powerful. However, often hearing God can come in the small, subtle, or least grand ways than we expect.
So, the question
that you all are probably asking is, “Well, if it is small, how will I know?”
We do three
We slow down enough to hear him. If we aren’t slowed down enough, we won’t hear God, or gain clarity on anything else that is going on.
We pray and ask God to help us to become discerning in regard to noticing his voice.
WE look for God to speak to us in themes or patterns. This can be via sermons at church, small groups and bible studies, therapy, or via inner circle advice.
Part #2 Hearing God’s Voice
I have realized
for myself that God speaks to me through my work. Since I read and listen to a lot of blogs,
articles, podcasts, and sermons, God will have them to center around a certain
theme for me to understand that it is something that I need to work on.
speaks to me in dreams to prepare me. I
have heard others say that God doesn’t speak to other people in dreams as in
biblical times. I beg to differ. God knows each and everyone of us by name, the
number of the strands of hair that is on our heads, and the names of all the stars. I believe that God will use whatever means
necessary for us to know that it is him.
A few years
ago, after going through a horrific divorce, I longed to see my dad who I hadn’t
been in contact with for a while. I
searched for him, and unfortunately, came to a dead end. About two weeks later, I had a dream that I
was with him on the bus in Chicago, and he was wearing the leather jacket that
he often wore when I was a kid. I looked
down at his shoes and pants, and I realized that he had the appearance of not
keeping himself up. So, in the dream, I pondered
over asking him if he was homeless, but I was afraid to ask. I woke up, wondering what this all
meant. Less than a week later, my dad
got on the bus that a family friend was driving, and he was able to connect
with my aunt who brought him to my house.
The sight of
him nearly made me fall to the ground.
He had indeed hit hard times and was homeless for a period of nine
months. God has given me a lot of
situations like this to speak to me.
other instances, I thought that it was me being strong-willed/lazy in regard to
something that someone else wanted me to do with them. I am not a strong-willed person. However, I am human, and a sinner. And like all of us broken individuals, there
are things that we know that we should do, but don’t feel like doing, and we fuss
and go on and do it. I thought this was
the case in about three situations, then I realized my whole will had changed because
God was trying to tell me that it is something that I shouldn’t be doing.
It took a
while to see the pattern. They weren’t
bad things. They were things that I had already
dealt with in my healing. There was
literally a pulling in my chest, and a feeling in my spirit that said, “No! This is not for you.” I was surprised because one time I had
planned to write a certain devotion, and I felt God’s Spirit telling me, “No!”. I decided to write on a different topic that
night: Handpicked by God. As I was riding
in the car the following morning, I received confirmation that I made the right
choice by getting a 3-minute clip on a Bible Teacher’s message. It coincided with the new devotion. The words that came out of her mouth were
almost verbatim to what I had said in my devotion. I choked up with tears. What I thought was simplicity was God
exemplifying that he is a God of order.
God can also
have us to sense things in our spirit that something is wrong when we talk to
people. Their emotions and psychological
dysfunctions can enter our emotional, psychological, and spiritual space. Sometimes it takes a while to figure this out. We are usually able to detect this in
patterns after a while.
A few months
ago, I had the feeling that my confidence had been stripped away. This was due to the trauma and the cycle of
shame that revolved around it. Even if
there were things that I knew how to do, I would get afraid of not being able
to do them. This is indeed a problem
with trauma, where you can forget how to do certain things temporarily at any
point and time. However, it isn’t often
that it happens. And I realized just
recently, that Satan was using this fact to create low confidence in everything
that I did. Right around the time that
revelation hit, I had three different instances of God speaking to me in regard
to this confidence.
one included a conversation with someone that I met who was able to discern
this. The second conversation was from
someone wishing me a happy birthday, and then stating that 2019 would be the year
of confidence for me. The third time was
reading a book, and having a specific chapter speak on self-confidence, the importance
of it, and how to lean into God’s love to get it. For some reason, I had never thought about
praying for confidence.
some Truths that we can meditate on when it comes to Hearing from God in the
Midst of Chaos
Being too busy will miss out on hearing God’s voice.
If we are limited to our way, we will miss out on hearing God’s voice.
The failure to act in obedience in the small window of time that God gives us in emergency situations may hinder us from hearing God’s voice.
When we fail to act on God’s instructions to share what he has placed in our heart with someone else, we miss the opportunity to bless someone.
When we fail to act on God’s instructions to share what he has placed in our heart with someone else, we also miss the opportunity of bringing possible correction or rebuke to that person on an issue that God was already trying to show them.
Part #3 Hearing God’s Voice
Samuel learned to identify God’s voice. And unfortunately, he had some sad news to give to Eli, who had neglected his duties as the person in charge of the temple in 1 Samuel 3:
And the child Samuel
ministered unto the LORD before Eli. And the word of the LORD was precious in
those days; there
was no open vision.
And it came to pass at that time, when Eli was
laid down in his place, and his eyes began to wax dim, that
he could not see;
And ere the lamp of God went out in the temple of the LORD, where
the ark of God was,
and Samuel was laid down to
That the LORD called Samuel: and he answered, Here am I.
And he ran unto Eli, and said, Here am
I; for thou calledst me. And he said, I called not; lie down again. And he went
and lay down.
And the LORD called yet again, Samuel. And Samuel arose and went
to Eli, and said, Here am
I; for thou didst call me. And he answered, I called not, my son; lie down
Now Samuel did not yet know the LORD, neither was the word of the
LORD yet revealed unto him.
And the LORD called Samuel again the third time. And he arose and
went to Eli, and said, Here am
I; for thou didst call me. And Eli perceived that the LORD had called the
Therefore Eli said unto Samuel, Go, lie down: and it shall be, if
he call thee, that thou shalt say, Speak, LORD; for thy servant heareth. So
Samuel went and lay down in his place.
And the LORD came, and stood, and called as at other times,
Samuel, Samuel. Then Samuel answered, Speak; for thy servant heareth.
And the LORD said to Samuel, Behold, I will do a thing in Israel,
at which both the ears of every one that heareth it shall tingle.
In that day I will perform against Eli all things
which I have spoken concerning his house: when I begin, I will also make an
For I have told him that I will judge his house for ever for the
iniquity which he knoweth; because his sons made themselves vile, and he
restrained them not.
And therefore I have sworn unto the house of Eli, that the
iniquity of Eli’s house shall not be purged with sacrifice nor offering for
And Samuel lay until the morning, and opened the doors of the
house of the LORD. And Samuel feared to shew Eli the vision.
Then Eli called Samuel, and said, Samuel, my son. And he answered,
Here am I.
And he said, What is
the thing that the
LORD hath said unto thee? I pray thee hide it
not from me: God do so to thee, and more also, if thou hide any thing from me
of all the things that he said unto thee.
And Samuel told him every whit, and hid nothing from him. And he
said, It is
the LORD: let him do what seemeth him good.
And Samuel grew, and the LORD was with him, and did let none of
his words fall to the ground.
And all Israel from Dan even to Beersheba knew that Samuel was established to be a prophet of
I have had situations where I felt God speaking to me about sharing with someone in regard to my own person struggles. However, I allowed my own shame, and the worry about other peoples’ perception of me get in the way of obedience. There have been other times that I was more afraid of ugly face crying and losing control in the process of vulnerability rather than the obedience itself. I had to speak truth to myself about this. It is sin. I am calling it what it is. When we know to do good, and we don’t do it, it is flat out sin. I hope that you have enjoyed our episode of Hearing from God in the midst of Chaos. God bless, and until next time.
“And he said, Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the LORD. And, behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the LORD; [but] the LORD [was] not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; [but] the LORD [was] not in the earthquake: And after the earthquake a fire; [but] the LORD [was] not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice. And it was [so], when Elijah heard [it], that he wrapped his face in his mantle, and went out, and stood in the entering in of the cave. And, behold, [there came] a voice unto him, and said, What doest thou here, Elijah?” 1 Kings 19:11-13
I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my eye upon you. Be not like a horse or a mule, without understanding, which must be curbed with bit and bridle, or it will not stay near you. Psalm 32:8-9
Call to me and I will answer you, and will tell you great and hidden things that you have not known. Jeremiah 33:3
We have been dealing with the series “Living With and Healing from Trauma on a Daily Basis” for a while now. Today we will dissect “The Anniversary Aspect”. Just in case you missed the last post in this series, “The Unpredictability Aspect”, you can read up on that particular issue here.
Anniversary dates can bring on several reactions: laughing, smiling, crying, dread, and so on. These reactions can be separate. Or, they can coexist. The one thing that is true about anniversaries is that no matter how much you try to prepare for them, when the time comes, there is no preparation in the world for what the reality will look like.
January 13, 2019 made six years that I had to put my ex-husband out. It was two months before his planned exit. Although that was six years ago, when the beginning of this past January rolled around, it felt like it had just happened yesterday. One surprising fact is that the 13th of January fell on a Sunday once again. Just like it was six years ago.
For the first time in almost six years, I dealt with triggers in regards to this event for almost an entire month. I knew that I wasn’t back there, but when the triggers came, it was as if I was standing around in the townhome 6 years ago, trying to decide what to do about the situation that I found myself in at the time: a husband who was staging a fake suicide four days in a row.
If I hadn’t responded in the manner in which I did, by going downstairs and checking the garage, me and my sleeping children could have ended up dead. There are some things that happen in life in which there are no words for, and this is one of them.
How did things get to this point? How could an individual go this far in order to regain control and pull you back in so they could emotionally and psychologically abuse you again?
So many unanswered questions.
And these things will more than likely never been answered on this side of heaven. Hurting people hurt people. Until we begin to take responsibility for our actions, we will continue to bleed out on everyone else in the form of drama, trauma, and layers of brokenness.
One thing that we can do when we are taken back on these anniversary dates is to ground ourselves in the present. We ground ourselves by reminding ourselves of where we are, what we are doing, and how it relates to now. We also create new memories to replace the old ones. There are times when following these steps don’t seem to work, and in those instances, you hold on to Jesus, and give yourself grace as you would give a friend.
Is there an anniversary date that you dread coming up every year?
It’s hard to trust. It doesn’t matter whether it is in marriages, friendships, or in our relationship with God. The difference is that with God is that he will never let us down. Either our answer will be something that is or isn’t in his will. He is our constant!
Are you tired of making excuses for everything that you did or didn’t do? How about hearing excuses from your kids when they didn’t follow through with their chores, or something you specifically told them to get done? In the beginning, it doesn’t seem so bad, but after a while, like anything else, excuses can get played out. Even with God.
Like the Israelites, we find ourselves in a vicious cycle. We end up begging God for mercy. saying that we’ll do better, and then going right back to continue the same sin over again. We end up cheapening grace until God steps in and causes a wake-up call! Listen to the podcast for this week to find out what happened to me when I ran out of excuses. Last week’s podcast episode can be found here.
No Excuses Podcast Outline
Background on No Excuses
Example of No Excuses in the bible
No Excuses Podcast scripture:
Jonah 3-4 King James Version (KJV)
3 And the word of the Lord came unto Jonah the second time, saying,
2 Arise, go unto Nineveh, that great city, and preach unto it the preaching that I bid thee.
3 So Jonah arose, and went unto Nineveh, according to the word of the Lord. Now Nineveh was an exceeding great city of three days’ journey.
4 And Jonah began to enter into the city a day’s journey, and he cried, and said, Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown.
5 So the people of Nineveh believed God, and proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them even to the least of them.
6 For word came unto the king of Nineveh, and he arose from his throne, and he laid his robe from him, and covered him with sackcloth, and sat in ashes.
7 And he caused it to be proclaimed and published through Nineveh by the decree of the king and his nobles, saying, Let neither man nor beast, herd nor flock, taste any thing: let them not feed, nor drink water:
8 But let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and cry mightily unto God: yea, let them turn every one from his evil way, and from the violence that is in their hands.
9 Who can tell if God will turn and repent, and turn away from his fierce anger, that we perish not?
10 And God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God repented of the evil, that he had said that he would do unto them; and he did it not.
4 But it displeased Jonah exceedingly, and he was very angry.
2 And he prayed unto the Lord, and said, I pray thee, O Lord, was not this my saying, when I was yet in my country? Therefore I fled before unto Tarshish: for I knew that thou art a gracious God, and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repentest thee of the evil.
3 Therefore now, O Lord, take, I beseech thee, my life from me; for it is better for me to die than to live.
4 Then said the Lord, Doest thou well to be angry?
5 So Jonah went out of the city, and sat on the east side of the city, and there made him a booth, and sat under it in the shadow, till he might see what would become of the city.
6 And the Lord God prepared a gourd, and made it to come up over Jonah, that it might be a shadow over his head, to deliver him from his grief. So Jonah was exceeding glad of the gourd.
7 But God prepared a worm when the morning rose the next day, and it smote the gourd that it withered.
8 And it came to pass, when the sun did arise, that God prepared a vehement east wind; and the sun beat upon the head of Jonah, that he fainted, and wished in himself to die, and said, It is better for me to die than to live.
9 And God said to Jonah, Doest thou well to be angry for the gourd? And he said, I do well to be angry, even unto death.
10 Then said the Lord, Thou hast had pity on the gourd, for the which thou hast not laboured, neither madest it grow; which came up in a night, and perished in a night:
11 And should not I spare Nineveh, that great city, wherein are more than six score thousand persons that cannot discern between their right hand and their left hand; and also much cattle?King James Version (KJV)
Welcome to the Valley of Grace Healing our Brokenness Podcast. And this morning, we are recording episode number 17 No Excuses.
excuses for everything. We secretly wish
that we could do things as well as other people. For some of these things, we have the
resources and materials to do them. We
won’t put them on our calendars. And
when we do, we keep putting them off until the next day. I’ll get to it tomorrow. I’ll get to it on the weekend. The weekend turns into next week, then next
month, then next year, and then 5 years later we are still wishing that we could’ve
developed our skills in certain areas. We
trade our desires for time scrolling social media excessively or having Netflix
or cable tv marathons.
another one: As soon as the kids are in
kindergarten, I will practice better self-care.
Instead of doing this, we become even more worn down from playdate
overload. Then, once the kids get into
middle school, I will get involved in small groups instead of isolating myself. Instead of getting connected, we become even
more isolated because we are running kids around 5 days a week for
extracurricular activities. A lot of
times our excuses is that we are tired.
And a lot of times this is the truth.
However, we miraculously find a way to get everything else done.
As soon as
football season is over, we’ll start eating together as a family, having family
night, and the list goes on and on. What
happens is that the older our kids get, the more intentionality has to take
place, but also, the harder it is to plan because of conflicting schedules,
part-time jobs, girlfriends and boyfriends, and their desire to do more with
their friends than with their parents.
know it, we look up, and that time is gone.
Our children are young adults, and we are unable to get that time back.
are going to look at one individual who made excuses in the bible. His name is Jonah. He was told to go to Nineveh to warn the
people of their sins and God’s judgment if they didn’t repent. Instead of going, he headed to Tarshish and God
had it where he was given a belly of the fish detour for disobeying his
command. Jonah felt justified in his
disobedience? Why? His excuse was that he knew that God would
forgive the people of Nineveh. Let’s
listen to the conversation that takes place between God and Jonah:
“And God saw
their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God repented of the
evil, that he had said that he would do unto them; and he did it not.
4 But it displeased Jonah exceedingly, and he
was very angry.
2 And he prayed unto the Lord, and said, I pray thee, O Lord, was not this my saying, when I was yet in
my country? Therefore I fled before unto Tarshish: for I knew that thou art a
gracious God, and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repentest
thee of the evil.
3 Therefore now, O Lord, take, I beseech thee, my life from me; for
it is better for me to die than to live.
4 Then said the Lord, Doest thou well to be angry?
5 So Jonah went out of the city, and sat on the
east side of the city, and there made him a booth, and sat under it in the
shadow, till he might see what would become of the city.
rather make excuses for disobedience to God’s instructions when we have our own
opinions of what God’s end decision will be.
When I was
at my last residence, it got to the point that I knew that I wasn’t receiving
the correct amount of child and maintenance support money. I didn’t want the stress of going back to
court. I didn’t want the additional
trauma either. However, I struggled,
playing the Robbing Peter to pay Paul game, trying to keep up with paying
utilities and rent, and scrambling to buy food.
As circumstances would have it, (God) I got backed into a corner where I
had to go to take him back to court as my kids and I were facing eviction.
lasted three painful years, and unfortunately, more lies than before erupted in
regard to income. Everything that he was
doing was projected on to me. Before
leaving the courtroom, I almost ended up unfairly with a humongous amount of
money to pay him. The whole scene was
one that was out of a crazy Lifetime movie, except it was my life.
When I got
home after court, the anger erupted, I said to myself, so basically three whole
years for this end result? Really!!!
Holy Spirit had already spoken to me several months before the last court date
and told me, “Even if you never see a penny of that money, it was never about
the money to begin with. It was about
accountability and God wanting you to fight for what was rightfully
God knew the
only way that I would stand up for myself was to force me into a series of
events that gave me no choice.
And so the question that I leave with you tonight as food for thought is this: What excuse are you making that could be keeping you straddling the fence of disobedience to God?
Thank you for listening to Healing our Brokenness and have a wonderful rest of your night!
Call to Action
If you are ready to stop making excuses when it comes to living in survival mode, and dysfunctional patterns of behavior and coping mechanisms, check out my new online Teachable course. Remember: Healing, growth, and maturity is not a drive-thru service, it’s something that can take a lifetime. However, what are our choices: revolving door of stagnancy or thriving and freedom. YOU DECIDE! Click here for more information!
Have you ever woke up with a song in your head and your heart? Well, that’s exactly what happened to me on yesterday morning. It was a song that I hadn’t heard in years. It played over and over in my head until I had to play it on YouTube. I listened to it three times. I had my own praise and worship session with Jesus. God knows just what we need. It makes me feel special when God takes the time to show me in little whispers that he loves me.
When things are predictable, we feel safe, secure, and at ease. We are not God, and thus, the truth of the matter is that not everything in life will be predictable. However, when unpredictability becomes your norm, then it can be the perfect recipe for disaster. If you already have a history of PTSD or trauma, then after a round of unpredictability at its finest, you will be in line for more.
I was young, in my 20s, married, a full-time employee and a full-time student. And although I was very busy, and I did feel stress because of it, it wasn’t anything major. Out of the blue, everything changed. I went from doing all of the above to running to the emergency room and/or doctor’s office once or twice a week. Unpredictability rocked my world to put it mildly.
The symptoms started off with a racing heart. My ex-husband dropped me off in front of our apartment building one night so that I could get settled, and he could continue driving around to find a park. My heart started racing like crazy. I remember thinking to myself, “What is going on?” It finally stopped by the time that I got upstairs.
A couple of weeks after that, on my 24th birthday to be exact, I was standing in front of the copy machine at work when I started feeling excruciating chest pains. One of my coworkers rushed me to the ER in her car. They didn’t find anything.
However, after that, every few days there was a new symptom occurring: extremely high blood pressure, racing pulse, hammer-pounding headaches that made you long for heaven, diarrhea, an unsafe drop in weight, fibromyalgia,etc. It got to the point where my belts were no longer able to keep my pants up.
Days turned into weeks and weeks into months as the physician ran every kind of blood test that he could think of. On one particular occasion, I was blow drying my hair, when all of a sudden, my heart and pulse starting racing as if it was going to beat out of my chest, and then my entire body started twitching. I finished blow drying my hair and headed to the ER. My mother, my ex-husband, and some other family members met me there.
As soon as my ex-husband saw me with my hair just blow dried and no curls, he stated, ” You couldn’t have done anything to your hair?” It was one of those moments when you stared in shock, cognitive dissonance sets in, and then you pretend like you didn’t hear what you just heard.
This vibrant twenty year-old, straight “A” student who was able to do it all suffered a time-out. I ended up having to drop two of my classes. The exhaustion and insomnia wouldn’t allow me to keep up.
Finally, during one particular visit to my physician, I gave in and told him that I was feeling depressed. He said that it was just the stress. My reply was, “Something is wrong with me.” He listed everything that he had done already, and then he said, ” How about we check your thyroid?”
In no time, I got the results. Bingo! I had hyperactive thyroid. Better known as Graves disease. I finally had an answer for this madness. I was happy and feeling blessed. However, that didn’t last long when I found out that it would take about four months before I would start feeling better.
I decided upon the “Radioactive Cocktail” as my method of treatment. A lady who worked in the nuclear medicine department gave me the best advice ever. She told me not to be surprised if my condition reverses because of medicine not being an “exact science”. It was the same thing that had happened to her.
At first, I was mad, and wondering why she would say something like this. However, I soon realized that it was the best advice ever because I was prepared. Just like she forewarned, my thyroid condition went normal, and then reversed to the other side, better known as hypothyroidism.
Four months later, I was back to my normal self so it seemed. However, the unpredictability of trips to the doctor and ER led me to develop compounded trauma. I already had childhood trauma under my belt. Then were was the trauma of being in a toxic relationship, a verbally abusive job, and my physical health was now added to that list.
If I had to look back at that twenty-four year old woman, I would tell her what I now know: “Breathe! Allow yourself to feel the feelings! When you don’t allow yourself to feel the feelings of overwhelm, your body will take it on. The stress has to go somewhere. Let it out! Nothing is worth your health. Community is everything. God is enough!”