Recently I attended at training on Trauma Informed Care. This is something that I have attended training on since I obtained my license. It has a growing knowledge base in the field. I was reminded that trauma occurs when there is an event that is experienced with adverse affects. I was also reminded that trauma can be experienced (First hand trauma is where the even is happening to you) or can be second-hand (Trauma experienced through witnessing or hearing and event). Something that I have felt, but never really heard much about is there is a 3rd kind of trauma that occurs when there are holes in our understanding of an event.
I have shared previously about being a young child and learning that my father was abusing my sister. I knew what was going on, but I didn’t understand. Not understanding, I created my own reality of the events that happened when I was a young child. This was a reality that shaped my teenage years and adult life. My reality shaped my adult life. It wasn’t until I started processing my emotions as an adult that I was able to see the lies that I had formed reality on because of my childhood perception. Events I could talk about, the emotions were buried.
One day I sat down and made a list of traumatic events that could happen in the life of a person. I was trying to make sure I covered everything in a speech I was writing at the time. As I sat there looking at the completed list, with the exception of two or three things on that list, I had either experienced it myself or had someone within one degree of me experience everything on the list. However, in regard to those events where I had holes of understanding or experienced second-hand, I have always said “It’s not my story to tell.”
As I sat in the training, I felt a burden lift just to have a name to what I have experienced. I realized that the events I experienced, even through others, is my story to tell. Those events, traumatic experiences, they shaped my story. I filled in a lot of blanks on my own. I made my own decisions and drew my own conclusions. I can’t live my life and explain my personal beliefs, morals, and viewpoints outside the sum events of my life. How that will look, I’m not sure yet, but I know that the few things I have shared verbally have helped others, so I see this as the next phase in my journey.
This was also confirmed as I was in worship tonight. This same training and the events in my life came to mind. I realized that in the same way I have holes in my understanding of events from my childhood, I also have holes in my understanding of God. He is working to help me correct the understanding of my events from my childhood. He also has to help me fill the holes of my understanding of Him.
It is not just the work of filling the holes. He also has to help change my thought process that led me to believe what I do. I have to empty out the wrong belief, have new revelation of what is right, and then allow the Truth to minister and heal those areas of my heart, soul and life where I have tried to put my own understanding on things. I know that it will not be an overnight process, and that it is a work that began the day I became a Christian. It is emotionally and spiritually taxing work, but I realize the work is necessary to move on to the next steps in my life.