As the years go by

Friday, September 16, 2011

This week was our 10 year anniversary. I really wanted to be excited about it, but felt at odds with my excitement. I mean, it's like a birthday or Christmas. It comes and goes every year. 

This year, I wanted to be special because 10 YEARS! is a LONG TIME!! 

Today I put it together. I figured out why the day just slipped right by without any real jubilation.

Earlier this week I attended a training class which was teaching us how to handle traumatic situations of our customers with care. This class really hit home for me because of the events of the last 1+ year with the girls. There was a lot of discussion around death of a loved one and the way your mind is hard wired to deal with it. 

The presenter started with some examples from Sept 11th, which were very fitting considering it was also the 10 year anniversary since the tragic event. He told stories about people who where directly impacted (at ground zero). He said there were people who were standing under the towers and the next thing they remember they are 25 blocks away.


He called it the blow away phenomenon. This is where you brain turns off it's thinking portion and just uses the survival part of the brain. The survival brain is only concerned with 5 things: 1) Fight, 2) Flight, 3) Freeze, 4) Food, and 5) Fornication. 
So, the people on Sept 11th who were at ground zero and then suddenly 25 blocks away went into Flight mode. Their brain turned on "auto pilot" and high tailed it out of the danger zone until their brain told them they were in a safe place. When their thinking brain came back, they never remembered the time in which they were fleeing.

So how does all this relate to our wedding anniversary? 
Well... it clicked for me in that training class that over the last year (even 3 years really), I have been in the "auto pilot" mode. My survival brain has taken over. Could be for many reasons. Could be any of the five methods being used for "survival".  I think it even changes day to day.

Sometimes I am overwhelmed and I freeze. Sometimes I am angry and I fight. Sometimes I am sad and I flee. Sometimes I don't know how to cope and I turn to food to comfort the real emotions I am feeling. As for fornication, we won't go there... this is a family blog. :O)

It's been a year, when is it time to move forward with our lives? When can I feel safe in the new family that God has given us?
This week I needed to turn off the auto pilot so that I could enjoy a truly monumental event like our 10 year anniversary. We have had a year to adjust to the changes, now it is time to emotionally deal with them.This is the year that we will move forward- together as a family. It doesn't mean the traumatic events never happened or that I won't think about them. It just means I survived, WE ALL survived. I cant let continue to drift anymore. Eventually, I have to feel what I feel and move forward. It may hurt for a time, but it is much better than living in auto pilot. 

I had a wake-up call I desperately needed.

I feel motivated now. I don't want to miss the celebrations and landmarks for my family due to being in auto pilot. It is time to take the wheel and drive!!


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