Can journaling help build you back up after trauma?

It’s taken a while to get this out because every time I go back and read it, my heart breaks a bit more. She was six when we met. Knowing what I know about trauma after reading some critical books like The Body Keeps the Score and Surviving the Survival, she was traumatized. She felt unsafe. She would cling to me desperately. But something was wrong, something inside her needed help that was bigger than what I understood. Super sad that today we are in the same situation.

My life, for the most part, was blissful. My parents are still married for almost 50 years. I went through a divorce and have had financial problems as a result, but for the most part, that was my biggest issue. I mean shattered self-esteem because a cheating boyfriend/husband isn’t small by any means, and it ruins lots of lives in devasting ways, but aside from that, I have had an easy emotional street. Thanks to mostly present loving and kind parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, and many many close, caring friends. I have been blessed my entire life. I am so grateful. You personal level of trauma will have a lot to do with what you have gone through up until that point. I was pretty unstained.

Sharing below what life was really like for me after this all happened. Keep in mind I wrote the below being brain injured some sentences make no sense at all. I started correcting and it became too much so I just left it all raw…

5/2/15 Saturday

Talking with my Dad about raising kids. She has no independence and has been this way since she was little. She was desperately holding onto me like something bad was going to happen. I remember a really terrible conversation with her that I was basically reprimanding her for acting like something bad was going to happen as if she had control. The feeling just got too intense of having to protect her from nothing and the panic all the time is exhausting you reach a breaking point and for me that shows up as disengaging. Becoming silent. She is sharing with me that her teacher wrote to her mom twice about a research paper and the last time her step dad put her in the bathroom and was withheld food. She was telling me that her mom said that she ruined she and I’s friendship and that she was not to talk anymore about the bad things that happen and only the good things that happen. Edited all my social media contacts, do not want anyone to have access to my life that I don’t want to have access to my life. There is no way this cannot be traumatic because it is so violent.

5/4/15 Monday
Living with a child with “disabilities” is hard. Evener harder is when the outside world cannot see those disabilities. Dyslexia, Adjustment Anxiety Disorder, Acute Stress Disorder, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. It’s radical. Thinking about why this happened…Feeling really depressed today, totally numb. Had to write to Ombudsmen to see if she will come to the IEP meeting. Just not feeling good. I want to go back to the big island and be near my mom and dad and sage. Decided to not take any medication today and see how I do, slowly through out the day my pain got worse and headaches started again.

5/5/15 Tuesday

Woke up today with the worst headache and can really feel the spot where she finger dug into my throat. Back of my head hurts at the base of my skull. My stepson called us at 6:30am to speak to my husband about the inconsistency with the protective orders. It’s 1pm back home and we have not heard back from Kaitlan Vogel the city prosecutor. Talked to Lance, this is so annoying.

Talking to Kaitlan. Helpful. Be cautious of what we say. Has all emails. Kicking sand, trying to wear us out. Trail date, 5/26. Possible plea bargain. First time to meet and talk to defense counsler. They want to continue to trail date, told them no. Motion to continue, another readiness on the 19th. Opposed to a continuation, up to the court. Readiness hearing, more negiotation. Between now and then gave very irrelevant information and nastiness. Videos and photos they want her to see. She is not too worried. She thinks is what she might be, mutual combat if that is the case what she will do. Main points huge size differential. Cad print out, recording. Getting 911 call. Going to be ugly, court ugly. Not about about us but towards us. No stipulations, no agreements. Going to be there be prepare. Never met attorney. Criminal protective, not modified but they have to call us. Marcsy’s law had to call us. Family court separate, be aware of it. Kaitlan spoke to her explaining the process and dates and what we suspect….we work together. A crime that occurred and we need to prosecute. Pre trail notions, not it excluded. Plea bargained, examples are made see going to trail is fairly low, personality dependent. Because she has not ever gone to jail, it most likely will go to trail. Plea to the sheet and the judges sentences. Completely up to the judge same thing that would happen with a trail. Judge dependent. Bottom line 30 days custody, full DVRP 52 week class offenders in our section have to do it manadatory anger management conflict resolution and tools, all custody 60 days 380 days and have nothing, what is a good deal, photos she has, prep us before. Pychological evaluation and mental health judges are, not allowed to speak to her. Demeanor when arrested. On the 19th readiness may call.

5/6/15 Wednesday

Talking to Lance he is telling me that he is my best friend (he is) and he didn’t get it until he was really getting it, really getting what was going on with me. He didn’t get it until he hugged me in Hawaii, I was still triggered and stiff. Have an opportunity to help tens of thousands of people. The part refined about ourselves. I got mated into a family that had fundamental issues, where there was a mother that had issues. I saw neglect and abuse. Not going to have a child living in my home continuing to suffer due to what that house inflicted. I cannot stand for it.

Talk about stages, but it isn’t the way it exists in reality. Normal course of working through this shit as humans. Lance is telling me an old story how Biggie was sleeping and he heard a noise in the kitchen. He sat up and Biggie sat up and then he plopped back down and he was annoyed. He loves Biggie. Me being small and the strangulation being a new statute in law and Aurelia. Pyschotic episodes. Light a fire under me. This is going to be a really good thing, hopefully the good thing is that Aurelia spends time in jail. We don’t wish her any harm but knows it will be beneficial. Part of Chapter 10 I touched on and spoke of stuff I don’t have any hatred of her I want this to be a healing thing of everything. I am just angry that she did this. It is horrible for people anyone to go through this. All people in the domestic courts know this and the fact lied. Not trying to hide anything. I am saying all kinds of things consistent with the book that Lance that is reading. Thousands of children and women suffer from a big person exerting force upon them.

Having some intense memories come today. In yoga I was revisited with the physical sensation of what I will call life leaving my body. I go to yoga and lay there for the most part, I just want to be near my tribe. Some people call it passing out, some people call it a natural outcome of being strangled. I then started to remember how I heard Jonathan’s voice softly at first as if it were in a tunnel, and it got loud and louder. Today as I was sitting icing my neck and looking off into the water in Hawaii, I saw myself in that tunnel I heard Jonathan calling to me. I was walking towards a light a bright light. I was reminded of how I was feeling which was similar to the way I was feeling when my leash broke, the spilt second when force stopped pulled and gravity has not set in suspended floating weightless peaceful calm dark. I felt this way in the tunnel.

Completely weightless, completely calm, no pain, no fear all peace and acceptance like nothing had happened. I had no idea of what had happened it was like the trauma was not there but it had just happened. As I was walking down this tunnel it went from complete darkness to a light that I started moving towards with curiosity and desire to not be in darkness for long. As I was moving towards it I hesitated and something made me turn then I realized that it was getting louder and louder and it was Jonathan so I turned and started moving towards his voice and in a spilt second I was conscious but not really back in my body. Disoriented I got to my feet and the panic set in Jonathan would not stop yelling at me until I did what he said. Then I started screaming again and could not stop screaming. Between the screams I would say you just attacked me!! You just attacked me! In complete shock and horror of what just happened. I just googled near-death experiences and verbatim this is other experiences too feeling of weightless dark tunnel. Although I might have already known this on some level I certainly did not feel or remember until this point that this is what I have experienced.

Having these journals to look back on is so helpful. The best advice I got for surviving co-parenting was to document everything. Having gotten into the habit of it has gifted me peace of mind because I can go back and see clearly what was going on for us. I would have forgotten all of this. It brings such clarity.

#journal #write #trauma #cptsd #panicattack #trauma #domesticviolence #strangulation #coparent #heal #family #love

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