Stuck on a threshhold;
Caught in a spider’s web,
Not able to come or go
Or know clear thoughts.
A blizzard of confusion;
Cold fog of unknowing,
Wind that stops me from hearing;
Come, sun of wisdom;
Help me find the way home.
Guide my feet, friend clarity
Until I rest.
For the past few days, I have been pondering the matter of finding peace.
One thought I have is that you know you have found peace when you check inside and encounter your own presence instead of a void.
I think this because peace has to do with wholeness rather than lack of noise or challenge.
I searched for some interesting quotes and found a few that I liked:
“You cannot find peace by avoiding life.”
So true; in fact, I would say it is as you live that you find peace.
“There is a criterion by which you can judge whether the thoughts you are thinking and the things you are doing are right for you. The criterion is: Have they brought you inner peace?”
“When you find peace within yourself, you become the kind of person who can live at peace with others.”
And finally, just so there is something to help you laugh:
“If you can’t get rid of the skeleton in your closet you’d best teach it to dance.”
George Bernard Shaw
“The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.”
My car was running just fine,
Till I tried to go up hill.
It dragged, sputtered and stalled;
My engine started to overheat;
I muttered ###.. I mean, “Oh dear!”
I took it to my mechanic:
He said it checked out great;
then charged me a couple hundred;
I thought I was going to faint;
But held my breath and bit my tongue.
Things continued on this way,
Good, except for uphill.
Then one day, I looked in the trunk:
And much to my surprise,
I found bags of cement.
So I removed them one by one,
which made my body ache.
They gained moisture while riding around;
No wonder my car wouldn’t go;
“Silly me,” I said to myself.
Then the most wonderful thing happen:
I found treasures among the bags:
things I had lost or forgotten;
I didn’t even know I had.
Some that were priceless to me.
Now I clean my car more often.
I make sure it has all it needs
by keeping shorter accounts;
By reviewing needs and concerns;
Now my car runs extremely well.
(Okay, so this isn’t really about cars! the point is good: As we do our work of recovery, we get rid of the “cement” and find the treasures. That does make the hard parts more endurable, yeah?)
Several years ago, when I was at a professional workshop, the presenter said,
“As adults, we must choose: We can keep everything we learned in childhood, swallowing it hook, line and sinker; we can throw it all away or decide what we will keep and what we will let go.”
I like this: It empowers me.
I have also learned that it is much more easily said than done.
It would be simpler by far if I wasn’t sorting in a room full of fun house mirrors: Distortions and illusions are everywhere!
I suppose that everyone has to distinguish falsehood from truth; that’s part of living. It is more difficult if trauma is part of the mix, however: There are so many lies that victims hear: “It’s your fault,” “You are ugly and worthless,” And one of the grand prize winners: “You are responsible for what others say or do.”
So, the sorting job takes on a new twist Throw the lies away and keep (or more likely, learn) what is true. Indeed, I have come to believe that a large part of healing is to find new truth, since so much of what I was taught as a child was completely unreliable.
I have discovered another helpful part: Respect the process; enjoy the journey; hold onto hope.
“Hope Smiles from the threshold of the year to come, Whispering ‘it will be happier’…” Alfred Tennyson
I am back to addressing a particularly difficult aspect of surviving trauma, and thought I would try to share some of it:
When I try to check inside, especially if there is something stressful going on, I usually find
N O T H I N G
I am betting that anyone who has wounds in his or her soul because of trauma, whether it is from abuse, molestation, medical treatment, tragedy, combat or anything else, knows what I am talking about.
Even Numb would be a step up!
If it isn’t that dead space, it’s the opposite: So much chaos and confusion, I can’t sort all of the thoughts, feelings and other “noises” in my heart.
I wish I had great words of wisdom; an instant cure would be nice…
But there isn’t any.
What I do know is this:
As I get healthier, I am more able to identify triggers and take care of myself in “The Dead Zone.”
I have also found that, as I walk through these seasons, I discover more of the self I lost in the trauma or tragedy.
It’s as I heard it said some months ago:
“When you’re walking through Hell, don’t camp there!”
Know that you are only passing through on the way to greater wholeness. Keep going, one step at a time.
Discover the strong, healthy things that work for you and practice them every day.
I am looking forward to my next round of victories in this battle called recovery. I’ll be sure to celebrate!