Five Things Trauma Has Taught Me
And how I handled it
No one is perfect. We all have flaws, no matter who you are or what you become. Perfection is an illusion that sits people up on high pedistool. Those people look down upon those of us who accept our imperfection.
My family surely wasn’t perfect, we still aren’t. We struggle, more than anyone I know. It seems that financial issues will never go away and we will continue to thrive for a little bit of cash to make it through the day. I must admit it does get tiring.
My father has epilepsy, he’s had it since he was fifteen years old. As he ages it seems to grow worse. I remember several times where he got a job and lost it shortly after due to having one of his episodes on the job. They called him a liability. He tried for social security but they refused to give it to him as they considered him an “able body willing to work.”
We moved constantly, thus horrible repeats of making friends, being stable and finally considering a house home. Eventually, nothing ever felt like home.
When I hit the age of twenty three I bought my own home, car and brought my parents and two of my younger brothers to live with me. It was like a breath of fresh air, not only did we have our own home and our own cars but my parents had managed to find a well paying wage of work. We were all so happy.
But it seemed like life enjoyed seeing us suffer. It was like we could never be truly happy or financially stable and on April 16th, 2021 everything changed for the worst.
It was 8:30 when the garage caught on fire. Though we tried to subdue the fire it was simply not possible. Our home was over two hundred years old and it caught on fire in a matter of minutes.
What made this worse is that we lived two miles from Canada and when 911 was called, we got Canada. It took twenty minutes for the fire department in my own town to come save our house.
Their station was only six minutes away from the home.
It was a terrible experience.
So why am I giving you a sad sob story? Well, I can’t tell you about how I cope with my trauma without a little bit of backstory. I wasn’t abused, verbally, mentally or even sexually. I can’t disclose or talk about that trauma. I’ve never been through it and my heart goes out to those of you who have.
My trauma is set on the incident that still plagues my heart today.
So here are five things that Trauma has taught me.
1. It can come at anytime
Trauma does not have a set schedule. It can come at any time in life, whether you are old or young, adult or child. Often at times it is a merciless storm, bringing with it shaky waters and high winds.
There is no way to avoid it, It is Inevitable. I just took it one day at a time after the incident.
2. The people who truly care about you will come out in the light.
The first person to come looking for me and my family at the second she woke up was my ex co-worker. I worked along side her for five years and we became good friends. When she discovered what had happened she rang me up, went out and spent all morning looking for me and when she arrived, she swept off of us up into her arms and held us close for a suffocating amount of time but she had also along with her daughter and fiancé brought us breakfast and things to drink. None of my outside family ever bothered to reach out or support us. It was mainly her and her daughter.
A few other family friends had come to help and even the school system my brothers attended donated money and materials so we could get by. It wasn't my grandparents, it wasn't my uncles, cousins. It was friends who truly cared and work mates who adored my family and myself.
3. Triggers and PTSD
I still have them, even after an entire year. Winter is the worse time of the year. The smell of woodstoves plagues the cold winter air, sending a panic feeling to course through the body, thus resulting into an endless and meaningless search to find the culprit of the odor.
My first true panic attack was at midnight and it was triggered by absolutely nothing. Every time I tried to call out for someone to come help me all they escaped was gasp for breath. It felt like I was suffocating I remember trembling in my bed until 3AM when sleep finally decided to take me away from it all. I was so cold too.
I ended up forcing my mind to focus on things that made my happy and that mainly was my brothers, especially my little nine year old brother who always managed to make me smile and laugh.
From the time I wake up to the time I go to sleep my mind is a jungle of pure regrets. I think about how I should have never bought that house and how nothing horrible would have happen to my family if I didn't. We lost everything that was precocious to us. I'm not talking about TV's or PS4's. Those are replaceable. I'm talking about baby pictures, photo albums, my sisters ashes and my 26 year old Teddy bear, my cats.
Those things aren't replaceable and if my parents and I had gone to work we would have lost two of my younger brothers too as they both went to bed normally at 8pm.
Living with that would be something I'm not strong enough for.
But living with the thought it could have happen is a hell on it's own.
I tell myself every day, it wasn't my fault. I could have never known it was going to happen.
5. Never think it won't happen to you
A week before my house went down, another house fell to the flames of a burtal fire. I remember sitting on my four wheeler thinking. "Damn that sucks." but my mindset was "it won't happen to me though."
Oh how funny life can be.
I quickly ditched that "it won't happen to me" because you never know what fate has instore for you.
So that's it. Five things Trauma has taught me.
You may be wondering why I'm sharing this.
Well my dear reader, if you made it this far into my work I want you to take something from this. I want you to know that your trauma isn't your fault, may it be abuse or loss of something vaule to you.
I want you to know that you CAN fight the demons that force you into a fit of panic.
I want you to know there is someone out there who cares about you. And fi you think no one doesn't. You're wrong.
Because I care.
And if my readers should ever need a listening ear.
Know that I am here and I will listen.