Bad shit rolls downhill. So does good shit, and any other kind of shit you can imagine. But what I want to talk about is the shit in my life. The kind that’s been with me since I was a child. I’m done with it. I’m done worrying about it. And I’m done looking away. Let’s deal with it already – and move on. Let’s turn it into fertile ground and plant some plants in it. Let’s, please, just get rid of that stinking, awful smell.
It’s hard to accept that I might not ever truly know why I am the way I am. All I know is, I want to take my own experiences and make them meaningful somehow. I want them to mean something to someone other than me. Otherwise, what’s the point? I don’t know how many other people there are that can relate to what I’ve been through or where I’m headed. I sometimes feel like I’m an alien of some sort. But that’s pretty common, right? Feeling like you don’t belong? Because difference is something we all have in common.
But no matter how weird I am, or screwed up I think my past was, I don’t want to be someone who constantly makes excuses for why I can’t get ahead in life. I’ve gotten this far in life and I’m doing OK. Build on the strengths you have and learn from the weaknesses. Learn to work with those weaknesses, because ultimately they make you more interesting and more rounded. Or so the theory goes.
My partner, too, suffers from trauma. It can be hard to handle sometimes. But I know I want to build a future with her, and we are getting the help we need to help each other. I want to learn to support her. I want to be there for her in a way that no one else has been able to be there for her. And I know she wants to be there for me too. She is helping me see my own value for maybe the first time in my life. My trauma is pretty different from hers. It’s about moving to a different continent at a very vulnerable age (11 years old), a country rife with racism, bloodshed and hypocrisy. And no one really to talk to about my difficulties adapting, no one who really understood what I was going through. Then it’s coming to terms with my gender and the storm of pain that followed as a result. It’s about losing friends to suicide, and struggling with suicidal tendencies myself. It’s about losing my father in the worst possible way, and losing my family’s support in the process.
But I’m ready to look beyond all that now to something else. It’s also about recognizing the suffering of my parents and how that rendered them helpless to truly be present in their children’s lives. It’s about how a culture of lies and deceit and repression, and a legacy of emotional, verbal and physical abuse spreads like a virus through generations – until someone stops to treat it.
I want to understand how trauma changes people and how it can be transformed into something positive. I want to turn my life into more than just a dirge and speak out, not just for myself but for those who came before me and for those struggling today and tomorrow.
Maybe if I truly understand how trauma works, maybe if I am able to truly communicate that to others, I can make this world a slightly less troubled place. Maybe, just maybe, healing is possible. Wouldn’t that be wonderful.
We all deserve to feel safe, in our homes, in our bodies and in our souls. That is what I wish for myself and everyone else.
Let’s make it happen.