Hello friends, how are you today?
I hope you’re having a good day.
There’s been something on my mind the last couple of days. It’s something that I keep going back to any time I have a small little relapse in my battle with my mental health. I have found that I will be good. Really good for months, and then I will have one day where things are bad, and I am out of sorts. Instead of just acknowledging that it is a bad day, I find I am beating myself up over it. I find that I am knocking myself down a peg, because I should be better than this by now. That’s when it hit me...
During my efforts to deal with my PTSD, to deal with my anxieties, and to work through the mental and emotional abuse I faced in my past, so many times the following words would fall out of my mouth: “I thought I’d be further along by now”, or “I thought I was over this”, or “I thought I was better than this”. I am so quick to beat myself up over a small infraction that it becomes a bigger deal than it truly is.
It happened the other night, and I got into a snit about it. I beat myself up mentally for getting into a negative mindset, and then proceeded to beat myself up over beating myself up. It was a horrible vicious cycle.
I thought I’d be further along by now.
This was also a common phrase said to me by many people watching me struggle.
“I thought you’d be over this by now”
“I thought you’d be happier by now”
“Why are you still holding on to this? I’d thought you’d be back to your old self by now”
This is the thing my friends... healing is not a straight line, as we have discussed many times now. You can’t just snap your fingers and have all the trauma disappear. We aren’t Thanos...
We can’t rid the universe of it’s problems, or our own thoughts with a snap of our fingers.
Trauma is kind of funny like that. Not in the “hah-hah” sort of way, but funny in the weird, “what the hell is this crap?” kind of way. What do I mean by that? Well, you can work so hard, and dedicate so much time to your healing... you will think you’ve got it under control, and them BAM! It pops up, yells “BOO!”, and you’re right back into it. It hides in the folds of your brain. You may think you know all of your triggers, and have dealt with all of them, but then surprise!, there’s another one lurking in the shadows.
So what do we do in this situation?
Take a minute.
Take a deep breath.
Ask: What’s really the problem here?
Acknowledge what the problem is.
Appreciate the fact you recognize what the problem is.
Sit with it.
Change the negative self-talk into positives.
Cry a little if you have to.
Take a deep breathe.
Take another one.
We are all, so quick, to speak negatively to ourselves. To beat ourselves up for some small, minor infraction.
Next time this happens, ask yourself, “what good is going to come from beating myself up over this?”. More than likely the answer is nothing. Nothing good will come from being mean to ourselves.
Speak kindly to yourself.
I knew today what I had to do after my snit. I apologized. I apologized to who I was with when it happened. I acknowledged that it happened, and that it is something that still needed some work. All we can do from this point on is move forward and acknowledge that there are going to be bad moments some days. Healing from trauma does not come easy, and it does not come lightly.
You are going to get frustrated some days, and you are going to be frustrated with yourself. But I am here to tell you, as long as you admit to yourself that, that is what is happening, you’re already a step above where you were before. And that my friends is something to be proud of.
With healing your worth is not dependant on how quickly you’re going through things. All that matters is that you are dealing, you are healing. You can go as quickly or as slowly as you need. It doesn’t matter. Progress is progress, and that is all that matters. Progress, no matter how slow, is something to be proud of.
So let’s stop beating ourselves up, because we aren’t quote “better yet”. Let’s embrace the fact that we are working on it, we are progressing, and we are dealing with and re-seeing some serious shit.
You my friend, should be proud of yourself. You should feel amazed with how far you’ve made it. And if you stop, and think “I’m not where I want to be, I should be further along by now”, just remember this:
You are still doing it. You are still moving forward even when your brain tells you to give up. You haven’t. You’re still doing it, and you’re going to get there. When your brain says you should be further a long, stop and take a minute to think of where you were, and where you are now. You’ll most likely end up seeing that you are better and far more along then you realize.
Keep your chins up my darlings.
Lemonade takes time, and a lot of lemons to make, and once you get there, you can stop and sip all day long on that deliciously tart and sweet life you have made.
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