“…don’t let your past experiences be the reason you shortchange yourself…”
A few weeks after I got to South Africa, my aunt told me that I needed therapy. She saw what she saw and knew this was good for me but coming from what I know and what I “thought” I had dealt with, I kicked against it in so many words.
Finally, I thought to give it a shot, but I quit after two sessions.
I quit because I felt the lady scrambled my head. But the reality was that my head was already scrambled to begin with. All she was trying to do was help me dig deep into the places I had hidden all the pieces, bring them out and help me put them back together.
Regardless, I didn’t go back, I had masters to deal with, emotional crap wasn’t one of them … or so I thought.
You see, I had bottled up quite a bit and didn’t realise how badly I was affected by it. I may be doing my best to cope now but I still have a long way to go.
My story might seem like a heart breaking one but who’s story isn’t?
Many of us have been conditioned to believe that therapy or counselling is for crazy people. Can you honestly look at yourself and say you are not crazy? If your answer is yes, congratulations, you are among the lucky few who are crazy but say they are not.
On a more serious note, we’ve all been through a lot, loss, grief, rejection, abuse, etc and we have felt the associated emotions in different magnitudes.
Personally, I don’t judge people’s way of life and decisions because I’m not in a position to do that. Other than a few who make bad decisions intentionally, majority of us don’t know any better and sometimes we may feel forced to make certain decisions.
We feel so inundated with life’s struggles that we end up making choices that are not in our best interests.
In a conversation I had with my aunt a few days ago, she said “…don’t let your past experiences be the reason you shortchange yourself, people need to learn to allow themselves listen to a perspective different from their own.”
Sometimes when I talk with my aunt, I take the opposing side because then I think she’ll tell me a lot more than she would if I agree with her. (She might read this so I will have to tell her now that I agree with her, but I want to hear more, her insights are spot on).
How did/do you cope, with all you’ve been through?
This is a question I get a lot of times, I’m told that it would be understandable if I stopped at high school or I’m moody all the time. Apparently, I turned out better than expected.
I give various answers to this question but after giving credit to God, the other constant answer is SUPPORT.
From the time of the accident, I’ve had a great support system, my paternal family, friends of my parents, friends of my paternal family, my own friends and my Godmother’s family.
I mentioned her family separately because she didn’t have to do anything. However, she treats me like her own. I just need to get out of my head long enough to show/tell her how much I appreciate her.
Reading through this, you can clearly see that I still have things to sort out but just like my aunt said, I won’t shortchange myself because of my past experiences.
Now assess your daily life, your wins and your struggles. You’ll realise that some of the things you think you may have dealt with, are just waiting to spring back up.
Before they do, get a handle on it, see a therapist or a counsellor or someone your trust. If there’s anything going on in your head, you want to be the first to know about it… this I learnt from Judge Lynn Toler.
Everyone gets better with the right support.
JOIN THE FAMILY