Tuesday, December 27, 2022

2022 Reflections

This year has most definitely brought its trials and tribulations and yet somehow, it still managed to be the best year yet. I have even impressed myself with my ability to bounce back from absolute SHITE but let’s be honest at this point I am a trauma pro - and not just professionally. 

I started the year off with a move to London, causally just moving across the country in the hope that there was something better there for me (& there very much was!). Actually, I suppose it was more of a pull but whatever, it was still the most terrifying thing I’ve ever done. I’d lived alone and away from home, but not in the most expensive city across the country with a brand new job where I had limited friends to rely on for support. I didn’t even have a place to live until the day before my moving date but by the grace of God, it all worked out as I had just trusted that it would. 

3 moves later and I am finally in a house I can truly call home and i’v met some of the most talented, kind & inspirational people along the way. Lesson 1 here is, MOVING IS HARD. Not just physically, but emotionally and even spiritually; moving house unsettles your world and is not something that should be taken lightly.

I always thought Bradford was interesting but Hackney is an absolute madness - I witnessed sights I’d never seen, some of which were jokes and some, just frankly disturbing. I suppose every city has its darkness and challenges; in London this is perhaps heightened by the overwhelming population and contrasting presentations. The city is flooded with a mixture of rich and poor, those thriving and those merely surviving walking side by side. 

This year for the first time I found myself questioning whether people can actually be born evil as I ignored my better judgement and found myself way too exposed to a really really unkind person - I have come to the conclusion that they cannot however, due to unfortunate and cruel circumstances of life, people may develop an impenetrable self-serving nature that no amount of kindness, grace or even love can soften.

I promised myself a while ago that I would never allow myself or rather, allow someone else to abuse me again. And yet, with all of my experience, knowledge and good faith, it still happened anyway! One empty bank account and a whole collection of PTSD symptoms later I found myself questioning why me? What did I do to deserve this? The truth is I did nothing to deserve it and not every misfortune (or even fortune) is a reflection of what you deserve. Sometimes you are just dealt a set of cards because you are and as cliche has called it, it’s how you respond to and manage said cards that counts. 

As we know I’ve experienced trauma before but this time, experiencing it in my adult body with my adult mind was quite different. Whilst I was acutely aware of every single millisecond of certain experiences, dissociation has taken on a whole new meaning as I found myself floating through April-May completely outside of my body. Or perhaps still in my body but inside out, and upside down; it’s not an easy experience to describe but the point is that although I was there, I wasn’t there. My mind, body and soul had been jilted and the strangest thing was, I understand dissociation so thoroughly on a knowledgable level and yet, there was nothing I could do to pull myself out of it. It was the same with panic attacks, as I thought I would be less vulnerable purely due to my understanding that it is just an attack but alas, they came and they came swiftly, sometimes unprovoked and here is where the power of breath and mindfulness comes in. I suppose the brain does what it needs to do for a reason; self compassion, patience and a very supportive network are magic tools for getting through challenges like these. The ultimate lesson I took from this overall experience was to TRUST YOUR GUT INSTINCT. If your gut/ body/ something is telling you to get out of a situation/ relationship then get the FUCK out. Stop making excuses and finding reasons to put others before yourself when you know damn well you deserve more. 

Now, I’m not going to promise myself horrible things won’t happen to me again because I cannot be sure this is the case but I can be sure that I will go forward in life with my eyes wide open, an awareness of my surroundings (environmentally, energetically) and with a stronger sense of trust in myself and my own sense of what is and isn’t right. I won't ever stop seeing the good in people and sharing love with them because to me, that is what life is about; I just have a more solid idea of when it is and isn't safe for me to do that now.

Of course the year has brought with it many other lessons but I can’t be bothered to go into such detail about them. Some brief examples include:

  • Motivation: a fleeting concept that we place too much emphasis and reliance on in my opinion. Naturally, as life ebs and flows the energy within us fluctuates accordingly; there are thus times when motivation to do things that may be beneficial in the long term but absolutely not a necessity in the short term will be lacking or full on non-existent. This is annoying because in order to progress at things consistency is needed. And HERE is where discipline comes in. The ability to carry out a code of behaviour when you don’t want to. Discipline is what delivers success. 
  • Ask for what you want, you just might get it
  • You can never predict how people are gunna move. Kanye & Drake, key examples
  • Not everyone will be happy for you, as you become happy with yourself

I’m truly so grateful to God for all that I have been blessed with this year and to my fantastic friends/ family/ co-workers for being a shining light in times of darkness. Reading this back now I actually feel incredibly proud that I managed to get through such a shitty experience whilst in a new city, creating a new life. Ofcourse, outside of the aforementioned trauma 2022 was a year of incredible growth. I have met and befriended people that have inspired me in ways I couldn't predict and I know i'm exactly where i'm supposed to be. The future is bright and i'm so excited. 

Any reflections/ lessons of your own from this year, please do share below :)


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