writing is healing for me. from grief and loss, a break up, or an abandonment wound, the last year has been an incredible healing journey.
the pandemic happened, and there i was feeling pushed back up against old wounds and memories.
personally, my abandonment wound had been quiet for some time. when the pandemic happened, there it was, rising back into awareness.
perhaps it was the feeling that the world had abandoned me, or the recurring nightmare from childhood of the huge black figure stuffed into a tiny small car?
perhaps it was the other nightmare that revealed a hole in the dining room and a monster yanking me out. feeling like i was trapped inside of my childhood home, there was no way to escape but to fight back.
the monsters of childhood reared their ugly heads to remind me, trauma can lurk behind every triggering corner waiting to see if you’ve healed what you say you’ve healed.
whatever it was, something about the lockdown brought it all to the surface. it forced me to return to many of the practices that i had developed to manage this wound.
although i relapsed, i knew those buried feelings of anxiousness and insecurities that haunted me were not welcomed to stay.
so i went back to work. i dug deep. deep inside, in order to calm the triggers and to relearn how to manage the childhood wounds of abandonment. i decided to do something constructive with the experience and allowed myself to feel every emotion.
i wrote what i did so that i could also help others who struggle with the very primal and painful wound of childhood abandonment and attachment disorder.
i have learned the abandonment wound is a deep cavernous wound with many tributaries and meandering manifestations.
-it can show up in the most subtle or complicated ways.
-it can show up as an over-reaction to a slight in a relationship.
-it can show up as a pang of irrational jealousy that arises out of nowhere.
-it can show up as an overly dramatic reaction to the end of a friendship that wasn’t actually that significant in your life.
-it can show up as a desire to get back together with someone you rejected, when you find out they are now seeing someone else.
-it can show up as a certainty that you are about to be fired, that is not grounded in the reality of your work circumstances.
-it can show up as a sudden fear of going out in public, because it feels less triggering to be alone at home where no one can reject you.
-it can appear in the form of a myriad of patterns and ways of being.
-in fact for some, it is a perpetual need for freedom from attachment. in others, a desperate need for connection.
sometimes, as a fear of committing to one person.
sometimes, as a tendency towards co-dependency.
sometimes, in the form of a monastic life, in an effort to avoid one’s triggers with the world.
in others, in the form of a life of service, in a determined effort to become so needed that no one leaves you.
sometimes, it can show up in a refusal to commit to any life path, or its opposite—a desperate need to affix to, or commit to something, someone, anything!
sometimes, it shows up in the decision to choose a safer relationship, or a less challenging career; other times as the path of a risk-taker.
sometimes, as a fear of intimacy; sometimes as a desperate need for intimacy.
for some, it compels them to disconnect from their family of origin; for others it compels them to cling to them even tighter.
things that we do, or don’t do, either in an effort to avoid feeling abandoned again, or as a reflection of our deeper need to be triggered so that we can finally look at and heal the wound.
in short, there is very little in our lives that cannot be impacted by the deep childhood abandonment wound.
the way that it manifests itself really depends on how you experienced and responded to the wounds, how deep the wounds go, and how you internally and externally cope.
from the insights, tools, and techniques that i need to meet this long-standing wound, i still choose healing.
the healing journey has been about identifying precisely where the wound lives inside, and to come to terms with how it impacts the many areas of my life has been a process indeed.
most importantly, to get to its roots and heal that which is ready to be healed .
to practice living an intentional life has taught me that i still have work to do.
as the collective works toward healing, i recognize how avoiding an unhealed abandonment wound was quite triggering during the pandemic.
i still had work to do and process how to feel, or talk about it. i seek tools, techniques, and insights that support this unique and personal healing journey and process.
relearning how to love myself through the childhood abandonment and providing a safe container for my healing has been difficult but also transformational.
i am working to be present for myself and honoring the ebb and flow of emotions that come through.
reading about the #215 babies reminded me to honor those who also survived. the legacy of unhealed pain and the loss of childhood took me back. idk how you all felt, but personally, i was triggered.
here’s to continued healing and loving compassion that is required.
may we all seek, welcome, and open our hearts to receive the blessings of healing and love.