PTSD Triggered

Yesterday I got the opportunity to visit a new mum and her now two week old baby girl. They are both healthy and getting to know one another. Mum has plenty of milk, baby is sleeping as newborn babies do, in little spurts, and they are in contact consistently.

When I held the baby yesterday I had the strangest feelings. It wasn’t a feeling that I wanted to have another baby, in fact it was the exact opposite. I felt uncomfortable holding the baby and really tried to get into the warm loving mood with the newborn, but it didn’t really come. I marvelled at how new she was and how perfect her little features were and was able to almost objectively enjoy the situation, but deep down it wasn’t what I thought I would feel. As most of the mums in my mums group are “clucky” I excepted that I may feel like that too, but no.

The interesting thing is that I could feel the feelings of trauma, of hardship, that I associate with that stage of life. They felt incredibly real, and even moreso today for some reason. I came home and told my husband last night that I was officially over that stage of life and that we will not be having any other children. He was agreeable as he usually is, I think he was rather relieved, because it was also quite a traumatic event for him too. The son we do have is an incredible person and I am thankful every day that he is ours and that we get to grow and learn with him. I certainly don’t think we will be missing out by not having another child.

So all day, I’ve been really sensitive. I read a children’s book online earlier to vet it before reading it with my son and I started full on bawling. I mean sobbing and had to lay down, which was good timing since my son was down for a nap. It was a story about a mother who has a child and goes into the childs room at night, no matter how he’s been in the day, and rocks him and says she will always love him. It goes through the different stages of life and at the end, she needs him to come to her house, and she is too frail to pick him up and hold him, the next scene is him picking up his own daughter and singing the same song about loving her forever. I am crying now thinking about it. I feel this strong lump in my throat and my stomach feels upset and a headache is present. Whoa. What an emotional response I’m having.

So this experience of holding a newborn baby has acted as a trigger for me, bringing back the helpless and challenging feelings that I experienced after my son’s birth, when I was fully in a post traumatic stress disorder scenario. I really had thought I had moved past this, but apparently not. It’s eye opening, and I’d like to move on from this wholeheartedly, and acknowledge that I have these feelings.

Mortality

I don’t know if I believe in an afterlife, going to heaven or hell, or reincarnating. I do know that the fear of death has been with me even when I was a child. I recall sitting at my grandmother’s knees crying asking her about death. She was a good god-fearing woman and would lean on her bible for strength in those times.

As an adult I have experienced moments when in deep stretches of meditation, that everything is unified and all of this is transient. I feel like that is more of a truth to me than believing of some light at the end of the tunnel. I have lived my life with the acceptance that now is what is, and it’s up to me to make the most of it. I have changed my life again and again in pursuit of my own growth, without a thought of if I do x now, then maybe I’ll be redeemed in heaven, or whatever. I live a moral life. I have a strong sense of right and wrong. I don’t lie on purpose, which is a great distinction from saying I always tell the truth because maybe some times I do lie but it isn’t on purpose, it’s just that memory isn’t in my memory bank at that moment, so I go with what I know and is fresh in my mind.

All in all, I really am the best person I can be and live as good of a life, making as positive of an impact as I can amongst the people I associate. I feel good about all of this. If anything, the feeling that I can be doing more is always there, which is why I am changing course and heading into medicine, so that I can positively impact even more people and have the influence so that people may actually do what I suggest.

So in researching and studying for the upcoming medical school test, GAMSAT, I have been diving in biology, anatomy and physiology, psychology, philosophy, chemistry (only lightly so far), and have recently watched a succinct version of life from start to finish from a scientific standpoint, and I was crying by the end of it. The amount of change that a person goes through in their life, especially for women, is tremendous. I am aware of my own mortality again, and all of this life seems so precious, and so fleeting, and I am tinged with sadness because there isn’t anything I can do about it. I know that I will flip this perspective and use it the opposite way, of making most of every moment and finding happiness and alleviating stress because I know it makes life better and healthier, but in this moment, right now, I am sad and I feel it.

Sadness is a rich human emotion and I am glad that I get to feel it. If I had to choose to know that I would die, I don’t know if I would choose that again. I would like to know the preventative measures I can take in order to make my physical life as healthy as possible, but if I could choose to be like an ordinary mammal and not know about my own mortality, I would. Perhaps I will change my mind when I am in a better disposition, but for now I just want to cuddle up and escape for a moment.

Love Still Shines Through Immigration Woes

“Can you please sign this Stat Dec for immigration for us verifying our relationship.” It’s the strangest thing to have to go outside of my own relationship to have justification that it exists and is viable and continuing. It’s almost like with immigration that you are guilty until proven innocent and there isn’t anything I can do about it. They just assume that the relationship is not genuine and make you go through so many hoops, years, and money, to finally get the stamp of approval to stay. It’s a heartless process for something that is supposed to be about love, about partnership, about sharing cultures and values.

This process of applying for Permanent Residency has been heart wrenching for me. It doesn’t matter that I am married to an amazing man. It doesn’t matter that we have a child together, who was born here. It doesn’t matter that we have been in a relationship for over 5 years now. At this stage, I can still be asked to leave at any time, even though I do have a current Partner Visa. It sucks. It’s so hard to not have that base security. It’s so hard to always feel on edge about whether or not you might have to leave the life you have built.

Most recently I’ve had to ask friends, some for the second time, to bear witness to my relationship. Not only that but I need them to then  get it certified and prove that they are a citizen themselves or at least have PR. It’s a hassle, it’s all a hassle. The thing is that if it’s only me having to be the one going through this hellacious process, that’s one thing, but it’s not just me. It has to extend to family on both sides, it has to extend to people who know us both. It’s such an invasive process of asking for someone else’s okay about the relationship that normally wouldn’t be any of their business. Not only that but normal relationship rules don’t even apply to my husband and I. Since I was not born here, and I am in the process of immigrating, we have to go through so much more effort, and more authority based things than normal couples would even go through, like having a joint bank account, or both of our names being on the lease, or doing either of those two things literally the day that you decided to have an exclusive relationship. No one does that. Not normal couples. So to then be judged as a normal couple when our standards are already so much higher, is crazy, and redundant to me.

A positive in this process, is that I have gotten back some of the statutory declarations and they have been heart warming. Where friends have written how they can see the love between David and I and that we try to make everyone else’s lives happy. This makes me cry even writing it. So a strange twisted positive is, that I actually get to have feedback from friends about how I operate in the world, and how my husband and I as a family operate in the world. That isn’t something you’d normally get, and it’s endearing. It has shown me that I really do extend my love to those around me, that my husband and I really do show loving affection for one another and that we are a connected family unit. I always want to do my best to help improve the world and share love, and oddly, in this process, that has been confirmed.

Now, I’d just like to have my PR granted and move on to citizenship and be done with all of this. In the end we all want to be loved, and I know that loving myself and loving others, is the way that it circulates around. Even with having this heavy burden of loving someone foreign and wanting to have a family who gets to live and have all the same rights as everyone else, it still shines through, my love, our love still shines through.

Online Coaching

It’s a mixture of feelings, of disgust, guilt, and feeling like I may have missed the boat. There are so many other life coaches, and business coaches, and health coaches, and parenting coaches, and every other kind of coach imaginable now online. I see them in my news feed every single day. I see their stories of how they were broke and look at them now all tanned in a holiday location living the mobile lifestyle. Otherwise I see the ones that are just starting out who are still in their office slash bedroom telling you how they can help you change your life. I don’t believe them all. I can’t.

I mean, how do you know who to trust afterall? I paid ten grand for a program that wasn’t actually ready to be taken, by a couple of coaches who had incredible marketing skills and a fast talking salesperson who boasted that she was great at NLP, which I now know is basically the ability to use words and ideas to convince you that you made the choice yourself. It’s all kinda bullshit. I took the course as it was being developed, and I got in on the “discount” early bird price because I was told it was going to double in price, even though they had just started out. Now when I look at their website, nothing has changed, and their social media presence pretty much stopped at the same time I had to stop to have my baby. Perhaps none of us were ready. However, if I am going to spend that much money, I expect that they know what they are doing, what they are talking about, and are able to actually help me along.

This industry of coaching has certainly tapped into the more ambitious self help people out there. Those of us who know we have more to offer but for one reason or another, continue “healing”. I cannot underestimate the power of spending time on yourself and learning what makes you tick. It is important, it does help you understand why you are a maniac when it comes to hearing other people eat, or why you have to have order in your life to feel productive. The thing is that once you are in that healing phase, it’s actually hard to climb out of it and actually use it. So much insecurity arises, so much doubt, so much wanting to be the one who is taking the coddled journey. It’s low risk if you are only helping yourself, and for someone like me who wants to help others and does help others every single day but not in that big grand internet coaching way that I see advertised to me every 8 posts on social media, it can get discouraging.

to be continued…

My Mind

I love the way my mind works. It is mysterious, it has great moments of clarity and insight. My mind is easily able to connect disparate things, items, genres, ideas, and is able to find the similarities. My mind is highly impressionable as well, I can sit with things and they can greatly affect me. My mind is also one that absolutely takes what it wants and leaves the rest behind, integrating as I go along, as I absorb new information. My mind works best when I am immersed in something, something different, something stimulating, something worthwhile like solving problems, or creating a base connection between things.

My mind is wild, imaginative, and I have beautifully descriptive dreams that are very close to reality that sometimes it’s hard to know the difference. The mind doesn’t know the difference I guess, so I have to dissect it to understand, yet I certainly don’t do this all the time. It would be too much. Plus I have other responsibilities.

I am highly inspired by so much, beyond just nature and it’s perfection, but onto man made things, and ideas, and intangible things. It all has an affect on me and I carry all of what I have been around with me. It’s really beautiful that way. Multifaceted, able to debate for debate’s sake, able to get to the root of the problem, able to see from different sides, able to laugh at my own self.

I also have to remember that I am in control of my mind, not the other way around. It is a great power and with that does indeed come great responsibility and I do my best to use it with care. Although I could likely use it at a great capacity than what I currently am, but this is a stage I am in as a full time carer and I am a using my mind to be the best mother I can be.

Unattachment and Change

The biggest barrier for real change is attachment. Having an attachment of the idea of what you think will happen, or the expectation of a future event is the downfall of progressive change. In order for real change to happen, the unknown must be embraced so that whatever actually does happen, based on goals and aspirations, that it is not shrugged off as not what you were looking for. The acceptance of ambiguity must be there so that the progress along the way isn’t underestimated. Just as a seed is growing underground, you don’t pull it up every week to see it’s progress, you just trust that it is indeed doing what it is designed to do. We are all meant, all designed to be born, grow, evolve, and then die. This is the process. It happens again and again.

Even when we think that we know what will happen in the future, there are so many variables, that it is necessary to release attachment of the outcome and embrace what actually does happen. By looking for the underlying theme, the underlying feeling, you can determine if what has unfolded is on the right path. Life is so full and so much happens every day, and every single thing really does matter. Even the simple option of what you want for breakfast matters because it sets up habits in your mind, it affects your body, it makes an impact. In ten years this may seem insignificant, but it isn’t because it is now a part of you. Everything that happens now is based on the past, and everything that will happen in the future is also based on what you do now in the present. Releasing attachment to what has happened before, and what may happen in the future is essential in order to minimise the drag that can happen when making change. The drag that stymies growth, the drag that may slow down progress to where a person gives up because they aren’t getting there fast enough because they are attached to a certain outcome and it has not manifested clearly enough for them to realise it.

So in order to utilise this idea to our advantage, it is best to accept that the future version of you is already here. The mind doesn’t know the difference. It’s best to accept that the future version of life is already here. The mind doesn’t know the difference. By understanding which virtues, which attributes you value, you can infuse them into now, in order to create this version. Staying unattached to the proposed outcome during this process is as essential as accepting that the change has already happened. It’s all habits, it’s all mind play, It’s all change, and it’s all happening right now. Right now.

The Genre Must Change

If your genre always thinks its at the edge of destruction, it will never fully emerge into the next paradigm. Instead of holding onto the hippie movement, let go and embrace the next chapter. Take the good things with you, but don’t hold on to what was because it will never be that again. Let go of nostalgia, and do whatever you can to make this next paradigm the best version of itself.

If the mindset is always that “we are so close” then that’s all it will be, so close, but never actually gets there.

The mindset for actual change must be that it’s already happened. It must be of a thought solely of the new paradigm and how it operates. It’s about understanding the virtues of the new paradigm.

If the new paradigm is that technology is here to stay, then one must embrace it and use it wholeheartedly to avoid the heartbreak of the feeling of not wanting to be a part of something that is happening anyway. It would be a matter of embracing the “this is now” paradigm and making the most of it. of course, understanding the shadow side and still working with it as well.

The old is old, the new is here, let it be. Infuse the goodness of the past and work it into the future that is now. Holding on is a futile effort as it will always be filled with strife and disappointment because it is not what will survive in the future.

In order to emerge into the next realm of growth, of evolution, we have to announce that it is here, not that it’s coming. It is here. It is now. This is how the change can happen without holding on to what was because that is long over. That genre is over. It’s over. The next one is fuelled by it, but it is not the old one, it is its own new version.

In order to be the next version, you have to be The Next Version.

Announce that the new is here. This is it. Be in it. Breathe it in. Learn it’s ways. Thrive. Then Flourish and Lead.

What to do?

Really I feel like I am in a space where I need to just be happy that I am a full time mum and carer of a beautifully intelligent little boy. The truth is that I feel like I am in a slump. I feel like I need a change, like a big holiday away, or overall changing up the scene I’m in, or leaving it altogether with my family of course. Since I’ve been sick for the last week and half it certainly has not helped anything. Topping it off that bub is also sick which means that I’ve had to not really rest myself because I have to make sure my baby is okay. I understand that this is how it goes being a mum.

It just makes me feel a bit overwhelmed and with a thirst for doing something more. When I am healthy again I’ll be returning to the gym and having my son in the kids care area for two hours at a time, and that will help, to get out of my head and into my body. Hopefully clarity will come with sweat and time alone.

I guess that’s it, I don’t have the freedom to just go out and do what I want right now because I chose to be a mom and a full time stay at home one at that. It’s strange because I also want that, but I want freedom too. I want both and I am not balancing it very well right now. It’s like my own ambitions and self care are on a back seat. By self care, I don’t just mean body work and grooming, I mean like spending time alone just being creative not just at home, and not just during nap times because at that moment I just want to rest. Again, all of this is inflamed because I am sick and have been for a week. I know that, I see that, I feel it too.

Also financially things have been very tight this year, even though we did make a trip overseas, our day to day life is limited to an extent of doing more things because there isn’t money to do it. I can’t help but notice a big part of that is that we have another person to look after plus only one income. I get it. I just don’t know how to balance it all out yet.

Location and ReJoining

Perhaps if you were to return to a location that you had once lived, where you were a different person and you understand that the nostalgic part of it is just that, then it could be successful. Ways to make it successful would be to acknowledge that you are indeed a different person, the place itself, even if it does seem the same at first glance, is also different. There’s no way that any of it is the same as it was, especially if time has passed since living there.

Perhaps taking the stance of embodying the new you, the new role you’ll be playing as you reenter would be helpful. Creating new contacts and a new sense of community could also be very helpful. The thing is anything you create when you return, would be more aligned with who you are and who you are becoming. Of course, feel out the old ways you used to live as well to see if they resonate, but do not get stuck in the slippery slope of nostalgia, and choose based on now.

It would take more will power and probably more discipline, but it’s entirely possible, to rejoin with a location that you had left, and together, make something entirely new and better.

Everything Matters

The stance “Everything Matters” and “Nothing Matters” are actually a part of the same polarity. They are each the extreme end on the spectrum of what matters.

After sitting days on end in silent meditation I had come to the conclusion that nothing really mattered in my mind. However, even though in my mind I thought that, I still strove to do my very best in my interactions, I began an open and honest relationship with myself about my emotions, and started really taking better care of my body of what I consumed.

So if the spectrum of nothing matters and everything matters are on the same line, then I can in turn think about the fact that everything matters, as I do live with the underlying idea that indeed, everything that I do, think, say, feel, matters. For some reason though in my mind I defaulted to “nothing matters” even though my actions showed that “everything matters”.

Now that this thought has arisen in my reality again, I am choosing consciously to also align my mind with the thought that I have been practicing that Everything Matters. Everything I do matters. Everything I say matters. Everything I think matters. Everything I feel matters. Everything I am matters. Everything matters. This is how I change the world.