Some days I wish I could just switch it all off, no longer have my past. I am in a good place at the moment, and it is not that I am having nightmares or am very triggered. I just get fed up being a survivor sometimes. Because no matter how hard I try, there is pretty much not a single day where that status does not somehow come into play. Maybe I have to pay a bill that is making me feel anxious, courtesy of my parents’ financial abuse. Or I make a typo in an email, that I only notice after I hit ‘send’. Thanks to my N boss, I can cringe at mistakes that would not even phase most people.
Sometimes it just feels like there is no end to all this. When I think I have it all worked out, I will remember something new, or recognize a new trigger. I know we all have them, those days where we feel like the house from ‘The Money Pit‘: broken and beyond repair.
On those days there are a few things I try to remind myself of. Simple tweaks to my outlook that help me feel a little better about myself and my survivor status.
I Am Not a Loaf, I Am Never Done
There is no such thing in life as being done. There is always more to learn, more to develop. That is true for every single person in the world, even if some people forget. Realizing that self-improvement and learning are a constant factor in everyone’s life, helps me see my own journey as simply life happening. I am not a loaf, and so there is no specific cooking time, or even a state that can be considered “done”. Unless your ambition is to be a loaf of bread, be okay with the never ending process.
When you dance, your purpose is not to get to a certain place on the floor. It’s to enjoy each step along the way.
— Wayne Dyer
The simple realization that life is a journey, not a destination can be very helpful. Sure our journey includes healing from abuse, but it also includes a lot of other things. Perhaps we have a wonderful partner, or very good friends, an amazing job… As our identity is not just one thing (we are not JUST a survivor), our journey is never just one thing either. We may very well be dancing a cha cha cha and hip hop number, all at the same time. That’s how we rock!
I May Not Be Where I Want To Be, I’m Further Than I Was Yesterday
Looking back on my journey so far helps me appreciate my achievements. It is so easy to get hung up on the anxiety and triggers that are still plaguing us. Celebrating how far you have come is essential, and something we often forget. It is one of the things I love about writing and journaling. It makes it easier to gauge your state of mind over the expanse of your journey.
Marking your achievements, and celebrating your success helps to keep you going. I mean, how much easier is it to keep getting up early when you notice (and celebrate) that it’s making you more productive during the whole day? Same goes for your healing journey. Once you realize you are not fighting a losing battle, you will find inspiration to keep going.
Marking our achievements has many benefits, fixing them in your mind encourages you to go for your goals, even when it’s easier not to. Proving your achievements builds confidence.
— Mhairi Gordon-Preston on Psychologies
If I Was Not A Survivor, I Would Not Have…
It may sound cheesy, but there are some awesome aspects to my life, that simply would not exist without my survivor status. Some of my closest friends would not be in my life. I would likely not have started the business I did, or at least it would not be the shape it is. I would not have the understanding and love of life I have…
Sometimes realizing what wonderful things have come into your life as a result of your healing journey can be a wonderful way of focusing on the positive results of your hardship. Seeing the positive in anything will always improve your life ─ always!
Positive anything is better than negative nothing.
— Elbert Hubbard
Yes, I Will Always Be A Survivor
Is that really such a bad thing though? Nah, I have a lot to show for my survival. I will just keep dancing this dance.