I know many of you have been closely following the difficult national conversation around Brett Kavanaugh, and that the news he will likely be confirmed is a terrible blow.
Regardless of your position on his impending confirmation, engaging with the stories around it has forced us all to look in the angry, frightened faces of the abused. For some, it is in the faces of our loved ones. For others, it is in the flood of faces, mostly strangers, declaring #metoo. For some—far too many—it is the face in the mirror.
We are glimpsing the terrifying scale of the trauma roiling under the surface of our institutions, our culture, and it strains at our collective ability to cope with it.
I imagine if we could remember the first hours of our infancy it might feel something like this. A warm, dark world of buoyancy and nourishment replaced quite suddenly with cold air on our wet skin, a dizzying onslaught of sensory information—most of it threatening in our state of absolute vulnerability—and, of course, gravity’s gaping maw.
In those early moments, absent the power to prevent any of it, we had but one mechanism to cope: total surrender. We wailed and hoped that our wailing would be met with warm skin, strong, gentle hands, and a bosom to shield us from the terrible violence of gravity. I believe that this surrender is the bedrock of everything we build after.
There’s a fight coming. Ground your fortifications in bedrock. Find a safe place, or a person—if you’re very lucky, people—and surrender. Fall apart. Wail. Be afraid. You did it once, and in the wake of that awful, frail moment you learned to walk, and then to run, to speak, to play, to fight. So can it be now.
Reembody’s dedicated practitioners and apprentices stand ready to provide shelter to those who don’t have it. You can talk, and we will listen; you can fall apart and we will help you up.
There is nothing anyone could say to make this moment anything but hard. Soften. Fall. Rebound. Rebuild. When the next moment comes, you’ll be ready.
One Response to “The Terrible Fatigue of Trauma—and How to Beat It”
I love this advice.