TRIGGER WARNING: This post lightly discusses abuse trauma; if this is a topic you do not feel safe reading about, feel welcome to skip it and go on to the next!
Many of the people I work with have asked one question, specifically regarding healing from traumatic childhood abuse. The abuse may differ for each of us who experience it - physical, sexual, emotional, mental abuse, or a combination - - but the the question is the same; after a session - or sometimes weeks, months, years or even decades - working on the many layers that present themselves as we go through the process of recollecting our authentic selves after abuse. . . the question I refer to is this:
HOW DO I KNOW WHEN I AM HEALED?
Or: HOW DO I KNOW HOW HEALED I AM?
And here, my dears, is the simplest answer I can offer:
YOU KNOW HOW HEALED YOU ARE BY HOW WELL YOU TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF.
This is not an answer many people like to hear - especially those of us who may not consider ourselves to have experienced any trauma or abuse. But this is the bottom line: If you are NOT taking the very best care of yourself - on all levels - physical, emotional, mental, spiritual - then somewhere within you is a particle of lack of self-worth. No one is born with low self-worth; it is learned, most often by some form of abuse. You may fight this, saying "it is not my lack of self-worth, but rather my job's demands that keep me from self care" or "but I can't take care of myself; my children (or parents, or patients, for friends...) need me and there is no time left for me" or any number of other "reasons" we come up with to defer caring for the very vessel that alows us life on earth; ourselves.
I will not ramble too deeply on this, but to say that when we are not treated with kindness, compassion, presence and awareness when we are young, we unknowingly build our brains to hold the sense of worth we were given. Then, later in life, we are likely to live the lives we feel we are worthy of - not necessarily consciously, but rather the lives our deepest, most vulnerable inner selves feel worthy of. Often, this means we routinely live with a lack of self care in one area or another of our lives. (As we begin to heal, we increase the care we are willing and able to take of ourselves.)
On the up-side, that lack of self care could be thought of as a golden thread - which, if we are brave and have good support, can be followed back to its roots. . . those roots which are the gateway to healing. So, if you are taking wonderful care of yourself on all levels, BRAVA BRAVO AND HIP HIP HOORAY to you!!! And if you assess your life and see that there are ways you are not quite caring for yourself at an A+ level, hooray for you in whatever moment of mending you are in; your AWARENESS is the key to your next steps toward healing!!
Take a breath; take a look. . . are you giving yourself all that you know you need? Are you offering presence, listening and healthy care-giving to your body's messages? To your emotional well-being? To your mental health? To your spiritual awakening?
How well you are caring for yourself is the simplest, clearest tool for assessing your own level of healing. . . it is an assessment that is always available and always absolutely free. AND, if you your assessment leaves you with a new consciousness of your need for deeper healing and you feel ready to move toward it, please reach out on your own behalf; there are many, many ways to investigate self-mending. (I am happy to assist with referrals to many types of practitioners, or if you want to work with me, personal session visits in office or by zoom.)
However you move toward letting go of what holds you back, and however you begin to embrace filling up with what you have been lacking, I wish you growth, care and
Much Love Always,
Rev. Maya Massar