Out of the shadows
With the announcement of my story coming out in That’s Life Magazine next week; I thought it appropriate to talk about exposing truths and how much impact it can have on your life. As many people who have a lived experience of sexual abuse, I buried my true self alongside the secrets and shame of the details. It wasn’t until I started journaling and exposing the truth (even to myself) that there was a shift inside me about my role in the trauma. That is why I am so passionate about giving other people the tools to start the process, my website or the Baggage App isn’t about making me rich (… but happy to have that as a consequence; just saying universe). It is about sharing how this technique has made a difference in my life and how by taking the trauma out of the shadows; it became my abusers shame. It isn’t my shame; I did nothing wrong. I was abused. By exposing it, I removed from me and placed it outside of myself. This is the next level of exposure though isn’t it? My photo will be alongside a story about someone who lived through abuse as a child. Part of me still cringes at the idea that strangers may see me and identify me as that person; will they only see the trauma? Will I see pity in their eyes; is that scared little 5 year old inner child wanting to hide again? Big breath, I know this is healthy for me. Every time I expose it, more of the dark shadows are lifted. Ok, clearly I am a work still in progress, and maybe I will always be healing – it is not a cure all. I do believe that journaling is part of a process towards healing, but it is only a part of the process. There are no quick fixes, no magic transformations; there is no ‘snake elixir’ for sale here. I will just say though, it can bring up emotions that you may not have been expecting, so as always; keep yourself safe and reach out to a trusted friend or family member or use a 24hr counselling help line if you need to talk to someone.