Trauma: give yourself space to breathe and love yourself

The Mercury - - METRO - ROD SMITH

MA­JOR trauma has hit and now you face the over­whelm­ing chal­lenge of re­build­ing your life. Here are some things to an­tic­i­pate: Head-knowl­edge tells you that you have to carry on liv­ing. You can’t con­sis­tently find the heart for it. The strength to live on comes and goes like, years ago, ra­dio sta­tion trans­mis­sions would fluc­tu­ate on long car trips.

The trauma has left you con­fused on the rare oc­ca­sions you can think at all. You are cloud-liv­ing and your feel­ings seem anaes­thetised. Your ca­pac­ity to plan any­thing, even sim­ple things, is se­verely im­peded.

Peo­ple an­noy you, even peo­ple you love. They an­noy you be­cause their pres­ence feels like a tug into a fu­ture you’d pre­fer not to face. You cry a lot when you least ex­pect it.

So what do you do? You rest as much as pos­si­ble. You drink a lot of wa­ter. You go for long walks, alone, even if it is speed walk­ing in the mall – es­pe­cially if it’s the last thing you feel like do­ing.

You rest, you breathe, and you face life a minute or an hour or a day at a time. You give yourself per­mis­sion to suc­ceed and to fail, and you of­fer yourself the love you’d of­fer a trea­sured friend.

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