Every human being on the planet has experienced trauma in one form or another. The word trauma from Ancient Greek root meaning is wound,damage. Physical and psychological injury,an event that causes great distress.
It is not uncommon to experience trauma unknowingly, because trauma is often incorrectly perceived as being a large event that causes significant distress. While that is correct, it is incomplete. Trauma can also be from small events in our personal life,childhood also from traumatic events that occurred in our family history (generational trauma), and from traumatic events that occurred to others on a mass scale. Trauma builds on trauma, so even small traumas combined can result in large trauma, but the size of the trauma isn’t what this is about.
Humans are all individual and unique, no two are the same. Trauma is also unique and individual. What is traumatic for one person may not be traumatic for another. What is a significant trauma for one person, may be insignificant to another. How an individual responds to life is as unique as they are, and is influenced by their lived experiences, their internal constitution, their conditioning, their environment and the external influences in their life.
How they respond is also from a mind, body and soul perspective – again a very individual thing. There are many, MANY things that influence an individual’s response to trauma.
Trauma can come from small events in a person’s life that were of importance to the individual. A child moving house may be insignificant to a child that is carefree and curious, yet traumatic for a child that needs familiarity and comfort for their sense of safety. The loss of a family pet may be a significant trauma for the family member who had primary responsibility for the pet, and sad but not very traumatic for a family member who didn’t. Bullying in the school ground may be significant for a child that has a difficult home environment, and insignificant for a child that is confident and self-assured and doesn’t care what anyone thinks of them. Then there are the big events which humans readily identify as being traumatic, like war, rape, suicide, death, violence and abuse etc.
Trauma comes in many forms, sizes and situations and affects us all differently. What we consider traumatic and how we respond to it is always different.
It’s an ongoing journey because I spent decades unaware of what I was carrying, and then avoiding it all when I became aware. As I work through it I get triggered, a medical term that describes the response an individual gives when something reminds them of their trauma experience. In simple medical terms triggers are “anything that prompts an increase in or return of symptoms”. They prescribe treatments and medications to minimise/subdue/prevent the triggers and symptoms.
For me triggers are unthought responses (behavioural and emotional) that activate when the part of my unconscious that houses my traumatic life events is touched upon. When I first began looking at my trauma I was triggered on a regular basis and had no conscious awareness in the moment that I was triggered, what was the cause of my trigger, and that my response was a trauma response. Doing my work, and a lot of it, has increased my conscious awareness but I still get triggered. Deeper layers of understanding come from being triggered, which are both comforting and frustrating. Sometimes I just want to live, not have work to do or triggers to deal with. If I wasn’t committed to knowing my soul and living my life from that place I would stop. Many people do, and I get it. It is not easy sometimes.
I have experienced significant trauma throughout my life. In my quest to live free from my past I delve into my traumatic life events to understand how they’ve impacted me, and to heal the wounds and battle scars left behind long after the traumatic events have passed. I am committed to shedding the energy of trauma from my physical body, the mental memories from prominence in my mind, and the conditioning, masks and stories the trauma caused my humanness to adopt. I delve into my trauma not to relive it, but to know who I am at a soul level free from it. It is work in progress but one thing I definitely know is I am NOT my trauma and I am not, and will not, allow anyone to define me by my life experiences.
I initially followed the mainstream way of dealing with trauma, with some definite results but also a large degree of failure. For me the failure comes from only looking at trauma through a singular lens, trying to apply a set of broad sweeping strategies for everyone, the subduing of triggers and symptoms rather than the removal of them, and failing to look at solutions from a mind, body and soul perspective. If humans are all individual and are influenced by different things, to different degrees, then how can the solution to trauma be anything but individual too?
Excerpt from article by Penny @ http://www.journeyhometosoul.com.au