Today marks 2 years since I left a life of abuse and addiction behind. The day I took back my life and made the choice to change my life. Some days it feels like a lifetime ago, other days it feels like only yesterday, but that is the reality of recovery. Through sharing my own journey, I want others to know there is hope. That you can and will recover, if you make the choice to, and continue to make that choice, every single day. I know that sounds easy, and in reality it isn't, but for me it came down to that conscious act of choosing to heal each and every day of my recovery.
Some things have been instrumental in helping me to get through the past two years, and maybe if you are reading this and struggling to find a way forward, one of these things may help you too.
I found a good mental health worker who knows about trauma. There have been so many emotional, difficult yet powerful breakthroughs here; learning tools to cope with PTSD, recognising the faulty thought patterns that are rooted in fear and how to modify them one by one, acknowledging fears of abandonment, deep seeded damaging self-beliefs, just to name a few.
Yoga. I only began yoga a few months ago, when I felt weighted down with stuck negative energy within parts of my body. I knew this was stored trauma, and needed to find a way to release the emotions and move the physical sensations attached to those emotions out of my body. Yoga has been life changing.
Meditation. To connect with Self, to release shame, guilt and fear, to ask for guidance and to find peace in the present moment.
Find a purpose. I have used the time for healing to connect with what's important. Taken a pause in life, and used the space to find out who I really am and what my true purpose is. I created a vision of myself, imagined I am already there and each choice I make is a stepping stone in that direction.
Honouring my body in everything I do. From what I eat and drink, to daily excercise, sleep and making time for rest and self-care.
Taking control of my own mental health. This includes making choices on medication, what I read, recognising when my mental health is slipping and taking action.
Gratitude. I now fully appreciate everything that I have. My children and family. My pets. A warm bed to sleep in and waking every day feeling safe, healthy and with the freedom to choose what I do with each day. These may seem like simple things to many, but when those things have been taken away and you get them back, they are like tiny miracles scattered throughout the day to be appreciated.
So two years of recovery and I am still learning new things every day to keep me moving forward. Trauma has changed me and it is an ongoing process, but I am beginning to feel like I have 'made it through'. And that is a beautiful feeling! I am forever grateful to my family, my amazing kids and those special friends who have supported me and loved me along the way. Without you all I would not be where I am right now.
"The first step towards getting somewhere, is to decide that you are not going to stay where you are." - Unknown