It is Finished

Shame:  It is Finished

You can always tell what things are important to Jesus.  That is why his last three words on the cross summed up everything:  “It is finished.” He already knows the things that keep a high level of stronghold on us.  Shame and rejection are just two of them.  Shame is when we are perceiving ourselves as bad.  This perception can be due to issues playing out in any of the following areas: financial, emotional, intellectual, spiritual, physical, and mental.  Because we are all broken, we dump shame on ourselves, and then unfortunately we dump shame on others.  Last week, we discussed the shame aspect of trauma here.  When we wallow in shame, then we see ourselves as unworthy.  We become deficient in self-worth.  What did the scripture say about our actions in regards to shame? “Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of [our] faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.”  Hebrews 12:2

 

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Rejection:  It is Finished

Rejection hits the same brain wires as when we experience physical pain.  When rejection plays out, we receive the hidden message, “You are not good enough”.   You need to prove yourself.  The next natural response to not being “good enough”, is trying to figure out what we need to do in order to qualify.  Unfortunately, depending on our background, this could turn into a dangerous ground for Satan to get a foothold.  Jesus was despised and rejected as he planned to take his place on the cross.  He didn’t need to prove himself, or figure out how to get someone to like him because God, his Father, was all the approval that he needed, and Jesus is all the approval that we need.  His life in exchange for our freedom:  He was despised and rejected–a man of sorrows, acquainted with deepest grief. We turned our backs on him and looked the other way. He was despised, and we did not care.  Isaiah 53: 3

 

We can finally release all of the shame and rejection on the cross by remembering the last three words that Jesus said, ” It is finished”.

 

When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.  John 19:30

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When Grace Is No Longer Grace

Dissecting Grace

As Christians, we know that the best example we have for living is Christ.  We love because he first loved us.  We forgive because he has forgiven us.  We give grace because we have been given grace.  But, the question is, when is grace no longer grace?  This is the question that I have had to revisit several times in the last few years.

Grace is no longer grace when we have gotten to the point of disrespecting ourselves.  How do we know that we our disrespecting ourselves?  It is usually when our needs, thoughts, well-being, and boundaries are ignored.  Boundaries exist emotionally, physically, mentally, and spiritually.

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Body’s Reactions

One of the ways to know if we are disrespecting ourselves is to pay attention to our “gut reaction”.  A lot of times our bodies know that something is wrong before our emotional, mental, and spiritual knows that something is wrong.  When I first met a neighbor at my last residence, she seemed nice.  Although she seemed nice, there was still something that didn’t allow me to feel 100% safe.  During the course of talking to her, she almost fell.  She grabbed on to me to recover her balance, and my whole body locked up.  If you live with PTSD/trauma on a daily basis, then you are very familiar with the stiffness of the body as a reaction to trauma/stress.  Because of trauma victims having a negative charge, we are even more sensitive to detecting something wrong.  We are magnets to certain types of energy.  Had I acted on this warning, I could have avoided a lot of heartache.  When you have a gut reaction about something, it is your body’s warning that your boundaries are being crossed, or that something said isn’t right.

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Giving Excuses

We all have bad days.  We are all broken, and because of our brokenness we are going to sin on a daily basis.  However, it is important to pay attention to how often we are giving excuses for behavior.

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Giving

We are not to keep score, however, it is important to know that there is give and take in any relationship.  If we are on the giving 90% of the time side, this is a sign that grace is no longer grace.  This will manifest itself through feeling drained emotionally during or at the commencement of the relationship.  This isn’t a normal reaction in a give and take dynamic.

 

Working

You are working to prove your value and worth all the time.  Jesus’ death cut out all the legalism of work.  If we are striving for approval or value from others, or we are given the hidden meaning to keep hustling for someone, grace is no longer grace.  I love this verse in Romans that makes this so clear:  And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work. Romans 11:6

 

 

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Control

Grace is no longer grace when we allow ourselves to to be controlled.  Control can be subtle or obvious.  When you find yourself in a toxic dance, your gut feeling is not right, and you are going around in circles, this is a sign you are being controlled.  It can also be a matter of having the things that you say or do be used against you.  For example:  Person A says :  Do this.  Person B:  Does this.  Person A says:  Why did you do this?  And then this repeats over and over again.  The only way to come out of the dance is to eliminate your action as person B.

 

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Patterns

One of the best ways to determine whether grace is no longer grace is to look for patterns.  These patterns will give a clue into whether or not there was a misunderstanding on our part, or if there is a pattern of sin on the other person’s part.  If it is hard to detect, then one of the best things that we can do is to pray.  Prayer for wisdom and discernment will allow us to receive what God wants us to know.  As much as we hate conflict, it is something that we can’t avoid.  The podcast on handling conflict can be found here.  We are told in scripture how to handle the conflict of sin:

“If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over.  But if they will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses. If they still refuse to listen, tell it to the church; and if they refuse to listen even to the church, treat them as you would a pagan or a tax collector.  Matthew 18:15-17

 

What I have come to figure out myself is that if the scripture verses above were put into effect in all of my situations, then the draining/toxic effect could have been avoided or lessened.  We cannot save or fix others.  It is Satan’s job to make us believe that we can, to the point of disrespecting ourselves, where grace is no longer grace.

God bless you all!

 

Katina

 

 

Footnotes:

The Shame Aspect: Living With and Healing from Trauma on a Daily Basis

Dissecting the Shame

Last week, we discussed “The Changing Seasons Aspect: Living With and Healing from Trauma on a Daily Basis”, which can be found here.  This week, we will be dissecting “The Shame Aspect: Living With and Healing from Trauma on a Daily Basis”.  One thing about shame is that when it creeps in, it can do a lot of destruction.

Trauma itself can produce a lot of shame because of its symptoms.  Depending on what symptom you are trying to control, it can leave you feeling isolated, and wanting to self protect for fear that someone will not empathize with you for your condition.  I harbored shame for three reasons:  the swinging/aggressive impulse that it caused, the good memory that God had blessed me with had been had been significantly damaged, and last, the physical condition that the trauma left my body in.

Shame of Lost Memory

I took for granted the memory that I was blessed with.  It just had always been there.  The ability to memorize telephone numbers, social security numbers, birthdays, and spelling bee words all came easy until the trauma.  Even names of people became a blur.  When you go from having all this, to trying to remember if something happened a week ago, or three weeks ago, because of the time aspect of trauma, it can do a number on you.  Even now, my brain hasn’t fully recovered.  Sometimes, I am standing with friends and talking, and for the life of me, I just can’t seem to remember their name.  At this point, I will try to tell myself to relax, and then not to overthink it, and the name will come to me.  I feel so blessed that God has recovered what he has.

 

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Shame of Aggression

The second part of shame that has taken me a long time to talk about is the aggression.  When the aggression hits, it leaves you with the impression of wanting to hit something.  Since trauma gets stored in your body, the only way for this aggression to improve, is to get it out.  I do this at home by doing a kickboxing style type of move to release the anger from my body.  Also, if you don’t go to therapy where it’s safe to talk about the trauma, it just remains stored in your body.  Unfortunately, this symptom of aggression from trauma stemmed from seeing my mother abused when I was a kid.  I didn’t know it was traumatic until the trauma of my ex-husband’s behavior in the home right before my divorce, coupled with the fact that my daughter was eleven years old at the time.   He was planning on leaving the home, and this brought my childhood surface of trauma to the forefront.  I was also eleven when my dad left the home.  His exit was also traumatic for me.  It involved coming home, and then almost everything you own being gone from the house, including him.

shame, guilt, trauma, anxiety, PTSD, depression, emotional health, mental health

 

 

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Shame of Physical Burnout

The last part of shame from trauma that I dealt with is the physical aspect.  I was in a compromised state.  Since my ex-husband wasn’t paying the proper amount of money, I figured that I had to go back to work to make ends meet.  I got a job that came with a high price: toxicity.  From start to finish of working there, it mirrored the emotionally abusive marriage I had just left.  I should have quit halfway through when my body started falling apart, but I didn’t.  It was nine months of Sodom and Gomorrah, and everything in between there.  I was in such a jacked up state, that I couldn’t think straight.  At one point, I probably should have been hospitalized because of physical exhaustion, thyroid crisis, and adrenal gland crisis.  I also suffered with chronic fatigue on a daily basis.  It took a good almost three years before my body starting responding to the thyroid medication again.  More shame crept in because during these three years I was more concerned with living up to everyone else’s expectations than living with reality of my situation.  It was also at this point that I should have filed for disability, but I didn’t.

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Hope from God

What does God tell us about shame of any kind when we are dealing with it?  Instead of your shame there shall be a double portion; instead of dishonor they shall rejoice in their lot; therefore in their land they shall possess a double portion; they shall have everlasting joy. Isaiah 61:7.  I hope that this discussion on shame has been a source of healing and encouragement.

 

God bless,

 

Katina

 

 

Episode 2: Conflict Among Broken People

Analysis of Avoiding Conflict

I used to think that avoiding conflict was good. I thought that avoiding conflict was the same thing as avoiding confusion, strife, and extra drama. I took pride in thinking that avoiding conflict was keeping the peace. I was so wrong about that.  What I was doing was avoiding dealing with a small problem, which later became an out of control problem.  This was due to fear of the response of the other person.

What God revealed to me recently was profound: We are all broken, and so when we avoid conflict, we are avoiding dealing with the problems that arise between two or more broken individuals.

This podcasts dissects all aspects of the word conflict, by giving the things that occurs when we avoid conflict to going through the steps to take to resolving conflict.

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  • King Solomon Handled Conflict
  • Used Wisdom
  • Used Discernment

 

  • King David Refused Conflict
  • Used Avoidance
  • Used Passive-Aggressive Behavior

 

Bible Verses to Focus on:

1 Kings 3: 28

Everyone in Israel was amazed when they heard how Solomon had made his decision. They realized that God had given him wisdom to judge fairly.

2 Samuel 13: 21-22

When King David heard all this, he was furious. 22 And Absalom never said a word to Amnon, either good or bad; he hated Amnon because he had disgraced his sister Tamar.(2 Samuel 13-21-22) 

2 Samuel 13: 28-29

Absalom ordered his men, “Listen! When Amnon is in high spirits from drinking wine and I say to you, ‘Strike Amnon down,’ then kill him. Don’t be afraid. Haven’t I given you this order? Be strong and brave.” So Absalom’s men did to Amnon what Absalom had ordered. Then all the king’s sons got up, mounted their mules and fled. (2 Samuel 13:28-29)

2 Samuel 13: 37-38

Absalom fled and went to Talmai son of Ammihud, the king of Geshur. But King David mourned many days for his son.  After Absalom fled and went to Geshur, he stayed there three years. (2 Samuel 13:37-38)

2 Samuel 18: 14-15

Joab said, “I’m not going to wait like this for you.” So he took three javelins in his hand and plunged them into Absalom’s heart while Absalom was still alive in the oak tree.  And ten of Joab’s armor-bearers surrounded Absalom, struck him and killed him. (2 Samuel 18: 14-15)

Matthew 18: 15-17  If Your Brother Sins Against You

15 “If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother. 16 But if he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, that every charge may be established by the evidence of two or three witnesses. 17 If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church. And if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.

Revelations 2: 1-6

2:1 “To the angel of the church in Ephesus, write the following: “This is the solemn pronouncement of the one who has a firm grasp on the seven stars in his right hand – the one who walks among the seven golden lampstands: 2 ‘I know your works as well as your labor and steadfast endurance, and that you cannot tolerate evil. You have even put to the test those who refer to themselves as apostles (but are not), and have discovered that they are false. 

3 I am also aware that you have persisted steadfastly, endured much for the sake of my name, and have not grown weary. 4 But I have this against you: You have departed from your first love! 5 Therefore, remember from what high state you have fallen and repent! Do the deeds you did at the first; if not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place – that is, if you do not repent. 6 But you do have this going for you: You hate what the Nicolaitans practice – practices I also hate.

Run For Your Life!

Background

Have you ever been in a situation where you had to literally run for your life?  I have, and I tell you, it is no joke.  I had to run to safety.  I was right in the middle of going through a divorce, and there was an issue that came up for visitation to be ceased for a few days.  Unfortunately, the order was ignored.  My daughter and I continued to get call after call, and doorbell ring after doorbell ring.  I told her to stay away from the door as both of our nervous systems went into hypervigilant mode.  There is more on the hypervigilant mode of trauma here.  And if you have been through any type of PTSD/trauma, you know this moment is like fear on steroids X 100 with you watching and waiting for when and where something will happen.

My dear friend called me while this was taking place.  I was supposed to be attending a Divorce Support Group that night.  There was no way that I was going to leave my daughter at home to deal with this situation.  I texted two members of the group, telling them to have fun, and that I had serious situation going on at the homefront.  No matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t shake the fear. My system was jacked up with adrenaline, anxiety, and fear.  That’s when my friend advised that I spend the night at her house.  She said that I could have trouble on my hands all night if I didn’t.  At this point, I was tired of getting the police involved.

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The Flight

I packed up our night clothes, my important papers, and clothes for the next day.  I also had to call my son and get an okay for him to spend a night at a friend’s home.  I told him that he was not to return home for any reason.

My friend pulled up to the garage, and my daughter and I ran to get into her jeep, and as she sped off, the three of us quickly glanced to the right, noticing a figure hanging over pretending as if it were limp.

We didn’t get much sleep that night because we were in hypervigilant mode, waking up every 20 minutes or so, having to both shut our phones down from the incessant ringing.

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Biblical Analysis

Like myself, David was on the run for his life.  Saul’s jealousy turned into anger, and his anger turned into madness: “And Saul was furious and resented this song. “They have ascribed tens of thousands to David,” he said, “but only thousands to me. What more can he have but the kingdom?” 9And from that day forward Saul kept a jealous eye on David. “1 Samuel 18: 8-9

Once David found out that Saul was going to kill him, he fled, having the king of Moab to house his parents, as I had to house my son overnight: From there David went to Mizpeh of Moab, where he said to the king of Moab, “Please let my father and mother stay with you until I learn what God will do for me.” 4So he left them in the care of the king of Moab, and they stayed with him the whole time David was in the stronghold.… 1 Samuel 22:3-4, BSB

However, David wasn’t able to stay there long.  He was advised to leave, running from place to place, cave to cave for safety, but God was with him: Then the prophet Gad said to David, “Do not stay in the stronghold. Depart and go into the land of Judah.” So David left and went to the forest of Hereth.…1 Samuel 22:5, BSB

1 Samuel 23:7-14 King James Version (KJV)

And it was told Saul that David was come to Keilah. And Saul said, God hath delivered him into mine hand; for he is shut in, by entering into a town that hath gates and bars.

And Saul called all the people together to war, to go down to Keilah, to besiege David and his men.

And David knew that Saul secretly practised mischief against him; and he said to Abiathar the priest, Bring hither the ephod.

10 Then said David, O Lord God of Israel, thy servant hath certainly heard that Saul seeketh to come to Keilah, to destroy the city for my sake.

 

11 Will the men of Keilah deliver me up into his hand? will Saul come down, as thy servant hath heard? O Lord God of Israel, I beseech thee, tell thy servant. And the Lord said, He will come down.

12 Then said David, Will the men of Keilah deliver me and my men into the hand of Saul? And the Lord said, They will deliver thee up.

13 Then David and his men, which were about six hundred, arose and departed out of Keilah, and went whithersoever they could go. And it was told Saul that David was escaped from Keilah; and he forbare to go forth.

14 And David abode in the wilderness in strong holds, and remained in a mountain in the wilderness of Ziph. And Saul sought him every day, but God delivered him not into his hand.

Even when we are at our lowest point, and in the depths of fear, God is with us.

 

Dear God,

We thank you for being our refuge when there is nowhere else to go.  We pray that during times of crises, we would seek you like never before, knowing that you have an angel of armies running with us.

In your name we pray,

 

Amen

 

Have a blessed night all!

 

Katina

 

The Changing Seasons Aspect: Living With and Healing from Trauma on a Daily Basis

Background Story

Last week, we discussed the Regulating Emotions Aspect of trauma.  That post can be found here. We are starting another season, and along with changing seasons comes another issue: a ton of grief.  Thus, this week’s discussion:  The Changing Seasons Aspect: Living With and Healing from Trauma on a Daily Basis.  For some reason, when you are living with and healing from PTSD/trauma on a daily basis, the grief from the changing of seasons comes with the territory.  It usually takes about a good month of the season setting in before the grief eases up.

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Analysis of the Grief

Unfortunately, when this happens it is usually not just one thing that you are grieving about.  The changing of the seasons can take you through literally a good 15 to 20 different things from over the years that may have been done in that season.  The best thing to do when this happens, is to allow the grief to come out.  Holding it in only leads to more problems.  The hard part about this particular time is that a lot of the grief feels raw.  Even though you may feel like you are going backwards because of this rawness, you’re actually not.  It’s one of the those that we have to ride out, just like the other trauma symptoms.

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When the grief is this intense, I find it helpful to release from my stomach going upwards, if that makes any sense.  What happens with trauma, is that the trauma and emotions get stuck somewhere inside of your body.  When it is this hard and heavy, it is usually in the stomach area.

Self-Help

It wasn’t until I had enough courage to start releasing the grief that I understood the meaning of what one of my friends said.  We were discussing grief one day, and she told me that her grief was always trapped in the midway point of her face.  Some of the things that may help you out during this time are:

PTSD, trauma, anxiety, stress, fall, changing seasons, depression, emotional health, mental health, self-help

  1. praying
  2. reading Psalms
  3. talking to a friend
  4. going to therapy
  5. listening to music
  6. taking a walk
  7. journaling
  8. painting
  9. giving yourself grace
  10. learning something new

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The Regulating Emotions Aspect: Living With and Healing from Trauma on a Daily Basis

Background on Dysregulated Emotions

Last week, we discussed the Depression Aspect: Living with and Healing from Trauma on a Daily Basis.  If you’d like to refer back to the discussion you can click here.  This week we are discussing:  The Regulating Emotions Aspect: Living With and Healing from Trauma on a Daily Basis.  For someone living with and healing from trauma on a daily basis, regulating emotions can be a challenge.

Having difficulty regulating emotions is a sign that your amygdala has had a beating from all the trauma.  There are times when I have had a full two weeks straight of dysregulated emotions.  What I have managed to figure out recently is that it usually occurs for one of three reasons:  1) when my system is overloaded with grief, and I am having a hard time getting it out,  2) I am in a place where I feel that I need to get up and go to the bathroom to grieve because it needs to be heavy release, 3) the trauma is causing my mind and body to self-protect, and I don’t feel safe enough to let it out.

 

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Getting it Out

Dysregulated emotions isn’t the worst thing.  However, it is not the most pleasant either.  Once your emotions are dysregulated, then it makes you wonder if you shouldn’t have just gotten it out anyway.  For example, when the emotions are dysregulated, your face may be showing something different than how you feel.  The worse thing is being around other people when this happens.  You almost feel like you have to put on a fake face to show that you are not in agony from being pinned up with emotions.  On the flip side, you could also end up being way over the top in expressing the emotion that you are feeling.

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Anger is one of those emotions that this can happen with. It’s best to try to be honest with the people that you are around by letting them know you’re having problems regulating, and that you need to excuse yourself to grieve.  The best thing that I can advise, as I had to remind myself the other day, after having dealt with a two week flareup:  “Better out than in”.  Try to let the grief out as soon as possible.  It prevents your whole emotional system from going haywire, and you having a long drawn-out episode that could have been avoided.

Until next time!

Katina

Abide My Love, Dance With Me

Last night, I attended an “Ask the Author” event with my Writing Group.  It was different in that it was setup like more of a poetry workshop.  We were given several handouts of bible verses, and we had to pick one.  I decided to use John 15, since this particular chapter on love and abiding seems to be the theme of the last two weeks for me.  God has definitely been speaking through that chapter.  The poem below is what I came up with last night.  I added a few more words this afternoon.  It tells the journey of how God had me to relearn what love is after being in an emotionally abusive marriage for 20 years.

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Photo by Burst-Brodie Vissers

My breakthrough came when I heard a message by Joyce Meyer, stating that in order to heal from abuse, we need to study as many bible verses on love as possible.  Romans 8, seemed to tear me up the most.  After studying about God’s love for a while, he allowed me to feel it.  I was so overwhelming, that I was almost knocked off my feet.  God never does anything halfheartedly.  The reckless love that God showed me cannot be put into words.  Sometimes, I would praise dance, and pretend as if I was a tree, and his love would take over.

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Photo by Matthew Henry

At the beginning of the summer, I had to face some very tough trials, and as God revealed himself to Moses, he revealed himself to me, allowing his entire Spirit to penetrate through me for a good four to five hours, reminding me that he was there, holding my hand, and ready to walk me through another storm.  This poem combines the love God taught me a few years ago, and the love that he poured on me a few months ago.  Blessings!

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Abide My Love, Dance With Me

Let his love so overflow,

Through my veins from head to toe.

Fill his presence on overwhelm,

Till that love tank is set at helm.

I now know no other love,

It’s not abuse,

Exploiting of doves.

For his love, we can’t explain.

No real words,

just like the pain.

Helps us heal from the abuse.

No more doormat,

He cut me loose.

Thought it was something that I’d just heard,

Your love engulfed me,

Felt so absurd.

The love you showed,

So overwhelmed,

Your love, it jerked me into a kiln.

Oh, now I know, “it” was the One,

Given to me,

Straight through your Son.

You are so dear, so dear to me,

To let me feel to this degree.

Oh, my Lord, almost too much,

To let me feel your Loving Touch.

Healing those places hurt by trauma,

Loving so fast,

it’s like my momma,

For it’s your love that healed my trauma,

Loving so fast,

it’s like my momma.

No greater love,

No one can copy,

You have the patent,

You own no sloppy.

It makes me dance, Just like a tree,

My arms are waving and feeling free.

I dance and sway, move to the right,

Your love reminds me

“No need to fight”.

Abide in Me, and I in you

Your love protects and helps me through.

You see when everyone is gone,

Your love is constant,

Helps me go on.

It makes me wonder,

How can it be,

That you decided to dance with me.

I can’t believe I danced so high,

And with your love, we touched the sky.

I can’t believe you came so close,

To showing your Spirit,

It made me roast.

In your embrace,

It took some time,

Just pouring and pouring,

Now I’m new wine.

 

If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.

Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples.  John 15: 7-8

The Depression Aspect: Living with and Healing from Trauma on a Daily Basis

Introduction to the Depression Aspect

This is the fifth part in the series “Living with and Healing from Trauma on a Daily Basis.  The fourth part in the series, “The Overwhelmed Aspect: Living With and Healing from Trauma on a Daily Basis”, can be found here.  Without having trauma, people living with anxiety and depression on a daily basis can find them both debilitating.  When you add trauma to the mix, it takes things to a whole new level.  What I have been able to finally realize within the last year is the difference between regular depression and trauma depression.

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Photo by Matthew Henry

 

Regular Depression and PTSD Depression

The difference with regular depression and PTSD/trauma depression is that there is no in between, or gradual shift into depression.  Sometimes, you might be sitting in a group talking to people, and they happen to mention one word.  That word might not have any major significance for them, but for you, it could be the opening of a traumatic experience that consists of twenty different things.  The next thing you know, your whole system has dropped without warning, like the ride called “The Giant Drop” at Great America.  The worst part about PTSD depression, which is similar to regular depression, is that it is felt at a deeper level if you are already dealing with other life events causing emotional stress.

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Adventure by Matthew Henry

Depressive Job Experience

A few years ago, I accepted a job at a manufacturing company, thinking that it was the ticket to getting out of debt, and more financial security for my kids and I.  It was my worst nightmare.  I stuck out like a sore thumb.  From start to finish, the entire process that had played out in my twenty year marriage played out at this company.  I went from being a trophy to being discarded like a broken toy.  I didn’t fit into the culture of anything and everything goes, so there was a plan set in place to fire me , with a good majority of the employees involved.  The workplace was a constant lion’s den of bullying, emotional abuse, and the “workplace untouchables”, so to speak.  It was God’s great mercy and grace that I was let go.  My whole system was wrecked with trauma when I started.  By the time I was let go, I was in worse shape emotionally, mentally, and physically than when I started.  The Holy Spirit had shown me what would take place from start to finish three months before I got fired.  I am not sure what was worse: knowing what would happen, or the anxiously waiting for it to happen.

trauma, identity, depression, mental health, emotional health, healing, PTSD, The Giant Drop
Picture by Matthew Henry

Fighting for Normality

I was not prepared for what happened afterwards.  The “Giant Drop” occurred without any warning.  When I explained how I was feeling to my therapist, she gave me a good analogy.  I was a deflated ball when I started.  So basically, the “already deflated ball” was kicked around.  One friend tried to encourage me by telling me not to let the job get me that down.  I was glad to be done.  However, my system had been through so much compounded trauma, that in turn this is how it responded.  I thank God that he slowly brought me out of it.  It took a few months for the “giant drop” to leave, but a few more years after that to even start feeling significantly better.  Have a blessed night!

trauma, identity, depression, mental health, emotional health, healing, PTSD, The Giant Drop
Photo by Gordon Hatusupy

Katina

  Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.  Isaiah 26:3

The Overwhelmed Aspect: Living With and Healing from Trauma on a Daily Basis

Introduction to the Overwhelmed Aspect

The Overwhelmed Aspect is another section in our series:  Living With and Healing from Trauma on a Daily Basis.  One might ask, “What is the overwhelmed aspect?”  When I am discussing the Overwhelmed Aspect with my friends, they know what I am talking about because I have given it the nickname of “The Movie Reel”.  Another one of my friends call the “Overwhelmed” Aspect a Whirlwind.  So, my new combined nickname is the Whirlwind Movie Reel.  It may sound funny, but believe me when I say that it isn’t a laughing matter.

What I have realized after having experienced compounded trauma in such a short period of time, is that the ability to handle stress is significantly lessened.  Not only is your stress fighting abilities lessened, but your brain processing speed is affected as well.  The overwhelmed aspect is a combination of the following:

Four Parts of the Overwhelmed Aspect

  1.  An acute traumatic panic attack.
  2. Replaying the details of the stressful event(s) in your head over and over again.
  3. The feeling as if you are literally in a whirlwind and can’t get out.
  4. Images of the stressful/trauamatic events going around inside of the “whirlwind”, literally like a movie reel of events.
PTSD, trauma, healing, overwhelmed, depression, mental health, emotional health
Photo by Johannes Plenio on Pexels.com

My Experience with the Overwhelmed Aspect

When I first experienced this, it totally knocked me off my feet.  The whirlwind/movie reel effect was slower.  Now, since God has increased my brain processing, the movie reel is faster, which makes me feel even more out of control when it happens.  To be honest, there is no time table on when this will happen.  It isn’t something that can be predicted.  One day, one of my friends posted an article on Facebook.  I decided that it was a good read since I have a teenage daughter.  I clicked on the article to read it, but the article wouldn’t load properly.  After trying for so long, and getting more frustrated by the moment, I figured that I would just read it later.  I was disappointment because the topic seemed really good.

PTSD, trauma, healing, overwhelmed, depression, mental health, emotional health
Photo by Skitterphoto on Pexels.com

With trauma, sometimes one word can send you into a tailspin.  After finally making peace with the fact that I would just read the article later, my brain opened up every traumatic event that I had experienced as a child.  The whirlwind movie reel took over, and it took me a good thirty minutes or so to get out of it.  What I have noticed as of lately if it happens, is that it is best to try to see if I can allow myself to come out of this whirlwind by giving myself permission to feel the pain from some of the events.  I just recently learned that when this happens, this is a coping mechansim/form of dissociation as well.  If we can feel the feelings a little bit at a time, we can more easily come out of it, and sleep better as well.

I hope that this series has been helping those of you who live with and are healing from trauma on a daily basis.

Have a blessed weekend!

 

Katina