Girls Standing Behind an Old Chevy Impala.
Normalizing Self Care

Childhood Trauma and Beyond

Have you ever felt heard in a way by someone who you have never met and has no idea the impact they made in a 30-second reel? While scrolling through Instagram one night, I came across a series of Reels from Jamie Norton, a licensed Christian counselor in Middleburg Heights, Ohio. Initially, her voice caught my attention; sounding similar to my grandma who passed away many years ago. As I scrolled through many of her reels, I came upon one that resonated with me so much that I listened to it multiple times.

Girls Standing Behind an Old Chevy Impala. Latchkey Kid of the '80s.
Growing up in the ’80s, Normandy Park Washington.

In a very short time, my childhood experiences felt validated. Ms. Norton describes a childhood that was unpredictable and chaotic causing you to learn to speak in a way that protects you and to try and avoid painful truths. She goes on to say that you pay so much attention to the outside that you never really get to know yourself on the inside. I always felt this way but never knew how to put the words together to make it understandable.

I wasn’t focused on the future, graduating college, getting a job, or daydreaming about what my life would be like. Instead, I was distracted by the “chaos” wondering why we couldn’t have the peace of the families around me.

I have spent my life overcoming my past experiences with years of counseling to identify and stop the destructive behaviors and patterns that I experienced so my children don’t carry on that legacy. Learning about what alcoholism does to the family and how co-dependency is just as destructive. I have made peace with my past and forgiven myself for the mistakes I’ve made leading up to that. I will be the first to tell you that it took work, and every now and then I have this moment of clarity or a feeling of validation for what I went through.

Finishing the podcasts for Making Peace and Beyond, I look forward to the workbook and video series. Since it comes with a price I will wait until I am absolutely ready. I want to normalize self-improvement and talking to someone, including therapy, counseling, or support groups about experiences and trauma. I spent years working through the grief of my past and am in a good place but there is always work to be done. If I can encourage others to say that while it doesn’t come without work but there is relief on the other side of the grief and anger. We all deserve to feel heard, understood, and validated.

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