I’m watching 60 Minutes right now and there is a story being reported about trauma, specifically childhood trauma. I am listening to these brave souls tell their stories and my compassion is overflowing.
The damage I’ve experienced myself didn’t happen until I was in my adult years, although some of those traumatic feelings were a result of my looking back at the child I was, and feeling compassion for her. The blessing is that while I was growing up, I had no idea what was going on, so I defined being “happy” by what I was feeling, which was constantly very scared and confused. Every day of my childhood. Therefore, it is no surprise that what I attracted in my early adult years was also labeled as happy, but was in fact a series of relationships in which I did not feel safe. Ever.
My definition of happy is much different now than it was then. What I thought was a happy life was good enough for that little girl, that teenager, that young woman, and for this I am grateful. There is no blame whatsoever in my world, and today I am still appreciative to have been raised the way I was, because I know it’s not what happened, not what I was told or how I was treated, but my perception of my childhood experiences that created my reality. Everyone in my life, my mother, my sister, my grandmother, and most importantly myself included, have done the best we could with what we’ve had.
There is a traumatic experience in my adulthood that came back to me so powerfully a few minutes ago as I heard this; “the moment of value in your life can come from anyone who looks at you and asks, ‘what happened to you?'” That phrase has haunted me, and at the same time escaped me, for the past 27 years. It seemed so simple. I stayed open and looking for that one person who would never come. The one who would look at my life and say with love and trust, “What happened to you?”
Because of this, my love for others has been a source of strength, and I have always looked at anyone who is acting in a negative way and wondered, “What happened? What has happened to you, to make you act this way?” I don’t ask, “What is wrong with you,” because I know how that feels.
The incident I refer to was something that catapulted me into a life I could never have imagined growing up, and I now know was Divinely mastered. At the time, I needed help, but I was judged instead. And like the story tonight on 60 Minutes, my perception was more of hearing, “What’s wrong with you?’ instead of “What happened?”
In the wee hours of the night sometimes…wait, who am I kidding…for so many years, I was obsessed 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and focused on wondering why not one person ever said to me, “Oh my darling, what could have happened to you for life to unfold for you the way it has? What happened to you that made you decide to take the actions you have taken?” Instead, I saw in others’ eyes, “What’s wrong with you?”
I got over that finally when the gift of forgiveness entered my life and it has been like a drug ever since that has kept me on the highest of highs I could ever imagine feeling. It truly doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks, or asks, about how we live our life. I don’t blame anyone else for anything, I instead give credit to those who have challenged me and helped me grow. After all, he or she is doing just that…asking. What matters is how we perceive our experience and the power we have to find the good in everything that happens, the joy, the happiness, the love amidst the trauma, the hurt, the craziness. It’s all happening for me, not to me. I know that now, and it’s amazing. What gifts I’ve received just by staying in the open space to receive.
Again, I am grateful for the life I’ve lived, the way I was raised, the scary things that happened to me as a young person, the things I thought everyone was experiencing. I depended on my “whispers” and my gut to make decisions, and I know with all of my heart that beautiful whisper was (and still is) the Divine Being, God, the Universe, Source…whatever your Higher Power is called in your magnificent world, guiding me to be who I am today, and we’re not done yet.
Now I know I’m here to use all of it for the Greater Good for all. I am compassion. I’m still learning, still out there running the road, taking chances, being “GoTerriGo” because so far it’s working. I am vulnerable, I am real, I am still making mistakes and reaching out to every human who crosses my path, with pure and unconditional love.
I am eternally grateful and appreciative for EVERYTHING and EVERYONE.
I love you. With all my heart, I love you.
Thank you for visiting my blog and reading this entry. You are amazing and worthy. Don’t let anyone dim your light.
Love always, Terri