WriteTogether Reflection: Week Fourteen

The prompts for week fourteen are all about reflecting on the adjustments I need to make in order to move forward in life and setting the year ahead. And to be honest, even though I codesigned this writing journey, I really wasn’t thinking about these questions being the questions I would need to be asking myself during this past week. But as the universe would have it, week fourteen was the week I ended up making space in my schedule to wrap up intention setting for the year, pulling my energy together and preparing to roll forward. So interesting how these things work…

Anyway, I also learned this week that a survivor friend’s battle with cancer and life itself had ended and she had passed on. A force of a woman, she braved and paved the path that many of us followed. She experienced so much trauma over the years, and fought so fiercely to make her pain meaningful, she was a hero to so many.

I found myself thinking about adverse childhood experiences, compounded and complex trauma, and how all of this plays together as the body and the mind develop and mature. I found myself thinking about how the body and brain heal, and the many forces in this world that work against healing. I found myself thinking about the enormous bodies of research that show the life long damage done because of experiencing war and sudden and/or violent loss of a caretaker, and abuse or exploitation. I found myself thinking about Palestine and Israel, and the lives literally blown apart. I found myself thinking about how historically recognized trauma was reserved for soldiers returning from war, how many studies conducted in the beginning were only done through the lens of male veterans and how the earlier awareness campaigns about trafficking in the US included statements like “its almost like these victims had gone to war” and “they have PTSD like hostage soldiers do.” I thought about how much more we know now, and how we are still fighting back against this same narrative and still fighting to be seen as fully human and capable of healing and restoration.

And I found myself wondering how I could change this, how I could move the needle even more. I found myself wondering what it might look like for me, what I needed to release and learn in order to be any kind of conduit for the kind of change we really need in this broken world. I found myself wondering if there was a way to both be urgent and intensely passionate, and to breathe deeply and be still. I found myself wondering how many things we could change if we were able to slow down and make space for things to come together or fall apart, space for the truth to emerge and deep awareness to lead to healing action.

I found myself feeling the weight of all of that.

I breathed deeply. I reflected on the past years and the themes that seemed interwoven in them, my values and what I really want for myself and those I love, what I want for the world itself. And I set my intentions for this coming year.

Back next week with more.