I am a trauma survivor. I’m not sure when I accepted that, but I have.
Trauma isn’t something that just your brain survives, but something which imprints on your body.
But your brain tricks you into thinking that everything is OK, until one day, your brain and your body stop. They stop blocking the pain, they stop blocking the memories, and then your body is flooded with the agony you’ve been hiding in the crevices of your skin.
My brain stopped tricking me into believing that I was OK a few weeks ago. The memories have begun to seep into my body like ink spilled on a pad of paper – the color soaking up all of the light. I’m doing alright, even though I feel like my memories are flooding out of me faster than I know how to think about them.
The stabbing pain in my lower back is coming from somewhere, the tightness in my shoulders and neck is a reaction to a memory.
There was a time when these memories would have pushed me over the edge. There was a time when I would have taken these feelings out on myself. I would have isolated. I would not have been able to cope. Today I feel like I am handling myself better than I knew that I could.
But I fear my body these days. I fear the new pains are associated with something I can’t remember. I fear that every time I feel the drumbeats of anxiety, I will remember a piece of the horrifying puzzle that is my trauma.
Not everyone recovers their memories, and at least a part of me is jealous of those who do not. Things I didn’t understand suddenly make sense, and I can’t help but hate that the pandora’s box of my trauma has opened, leaving me to sort my own history.
Linear timelines have been shattered. Voices distorted. My timestream has met with a trauma paradox, and that paradox refuses to give me the tools to understand what happened when. Some thing I know concretely to be true. Some things I find out I have been making up to make the gaps seem impossible. Knowledge of myself has become treacherous.
But I am not panicking. I am not hurting myself. I am taking deep breaths and swimming to the surface. I am talking about my fears, and I am letting them work through my body.
I will not be owned by my pain, I will fight until it is mine to control.