Thursday, January 6, 2011

Hankie Wisdom Flags Step 3

Here are the hankies for my first flag. blue - white - red - green - yellow (same color order as Tibetan prayer flags)

Colorful threads will hang down...still awaiting the Trauma Sword labels...

Sword of Trauma
 Theory by Angela Shelton
Trauma – like rape, incest, child sexual abuse, domestic violence or neglect – is like getting pierced with a sword.
Being pierced with the sword of trauma can leave you silent, frozen in fear, stuck, and in pain.
It is nearly impossible to have intimate relationships. Being wounded by the sword of trauma can make you quick to anger, depressed, or isolated. It causes health problems. You can have chronic migraines, body aches, bad memories, insomnia, or numbness. Being wounded makes it hard to breathe deeply.
You can live with the sword pierced through you. You can ignore the fact that you are wounded and deal with the symptoms and instead of the cause. You can get into relationships with other people who are wounded. You can live in entire communities that are in pain. Keeping the sword in place is living in denial. Denial is a powerful choice that you have the freedom to make.
When you see the sword and realize you are wounded, you can also see how you are affecting yourself and the world around you. You can see that you can live a much healthier life when you remove the sword that wounded you.

Step Number 1 – Acknowledge the Sword
What is your trauma? What is your story? What has you living in pain and suffering? How is it affecting your life? How is being wounded keeping you away from joy and happiness?
The thought of facing trauma and going through the process of recovery brings up fear. It can make you cry. It can make you have body memories. It can make you want to scream out in horror and rage. It can scare you and leave you frozen in fear and not know where to begin. You may hear all of your negative thought patterns rear their ugly heads telling you that you are stupid, worthless, ugly, or nothing.

Step number 2 – removing the sword
If you were going to go through surgery you would have to make a plan. You need help, support, a place in which to remove it in the safest way possible, and a place to recover. Going through recovery is the same thing. You need a support system. Make a plan, gather support, and then go right into the fear. Find your therapist, support group, friends, and supportive family members to help you through the darkest hours. Select the support team that works best for you.
Some things that may come up while you are removing the sword are:
Removing the sword hurts. In order to get it fully out you have to go through the pain of purging it. In order to heal it, you have to feel it. Remember that once you face the fear and remove the sword – you will have it!

Step Number 3 – Healing the Wound
With your sword out and on the ground, you are left with a big gaping wound. You may feel sad, empty, depressed, lonely, isolated, or just plain numb. You may want to cry for a few days and that’s okay. Now is the time to take care of yourself on all levels – body, mind, and spirit.
Now is the time to replace negative thought patterns with positive self care and self love. Some good thoughts to have are: I love you, you are wonderful, you are loved, you are worthy of greatness, you’re beautiful, I love you, squish.

Step Number 4 – Using Your Sword
Now that the sword is no longer keeping your stunted in pain and suffering, you can pick it up. Take note that the sword – just like your trauma- is something outside of you. It is something that happened. It does not define who you are. See your sword, visualize it in your hand, on your back, or at your side. You have a choice how you are affected by your experiences. Being wounded by the sword does not have to make you into the walking wounded for the rest of your life.
You can remove your sword and use it for good. You can use your sword to cut away negative thought patterns. You can use it to give you strength in the dark times and remind you of your inner strength.

Step number 5 – Practice Sword Play
Removing the sword of trauma and then using it takes practice, especially if you were taught to live in denial. Living with your sword on your back or in your hand is a lot different than remaining pierced with it. Using your sword takes practice just like recovering from a traumatic experience. You may have to re-learn how to love yourself or parent yourself. You are not alone. There are many out there who are wounded. As we all get better and recover – more warriors replace victims.
You are worthy to be loved and you are worthy to have a sword instead of being wounded by it.
You sword can be a lot of things. I can be your pen, your camera, your paintbrush, your microphone, your musical instrument, or your walking stick.
Please use your sword with love instead of vengeance. Share this message with others and support your fellow warriors.

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