Amazing Amelia is the girl whom everyone thinks has it all.
To all she looks happy and enjoying her life, not a cloud on her sky to block the rays of sunshine. "I am so jealous of you!", her friends will say, "I wish I could swap places with you, if just for a day".
What people don't know is that in her heart, she does not feel happy, or angry, or sad. She feels nothing, she's numb, a dead woman playing alive!
She learned as a girl to smile and be nice, no matter how many times they hurt you and try to make you feel like you're worthless, that you may as well die!
She tried so hard to make it in life, to get a good job and a husband who comes home at night. Her childhood days are long, long gone, but it feels like the past is alive, alive in her heart, alive in her mind.
Amazing Amelia, the girl whom everyone thinks has it all, is feeling confused and asks herself, what it will take to break the spell? It feels to her that she's got strings, she is not free - free to be, to exist! The past is holding her down, with a foot on her head - no chance to a life in fulfilment and joy, to love in peace or to enjoy a clean breath of air! Her lungs are filled with pollution from the past, her head feels like a cloud full of dust and her heart has got holes from the ashes that burn since she was a little, little girl.
Adverse childhood experiences (ACE) can have a long-lasting impact and can make you stuck as an adult and can lead to mental health problems. Physical, emotional or sexual abuse, on-going neglect, bullying, parents divorcing, bereavement, toxic levels of stress, addictions within the family, multiple losses and physical or mental illnesses are all factors that can throw children off balance. If support is not offered, the child might learn to adapt to an environment that is hostile and chaotic in order to survive, but powerful feelings of rage, anger, resentment towards self or/and others, hate and aggression will always be part of that child's life and these feelings will be carried into adulthood. A heavy weight to carry, and you feel slow to get ahead in life, your shoulders start to drop, your feet fell like are made of stone! YOU MIGHT START EXPERIENCING MENTAL HEALTH ISSUES.
An ACE study was conducted in America in 1985 in Dr. Vincent Felitti's obesity clinic in California, and the findings identified a direct link between adverse childhood experiences and adult chronic illness, as well as emotional and social issues such as depression, domestic violence and suicide. People with multiple adverse childhood experiences are 460% more likely to experience depression, and 1220% more likely to attempt suicide, than someone with no adverse childhood experiences.
Breaking free from your past can happen only when you start being aware of the unconscious drives that dictate your existence. START EXPLORING YOUR PAST!
Breaking free from your past can happen only when you start giving a voice to the unbearable pain you tried to dismiss with layers and layers of defences. YOU CAN'T CHANGE YOUR PAST, BUT YOU CAN LEARN TO RELATE DIFFERENTLY TO IT!
Breaking free from your past can happen in counselling. Give yourself the chance to grow wings, to learn to fly. Learn to love yourself and be gentle to yourself. Learn to forgive and let go, cut the strings and be free! FREE TO BE, TO EXIST!
Start re-writing your story, be the one who's in charge of your life and put the ghosts from the past to rest, stop the haunting down! START LIVING IN THE PRESENT!
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About Gianina Ardeleanu
Integrative child & adult counsellor, with a special interest in adverse childhood experiences. I work with and help people experiencing common mental health problems like depression, anxiety and panic attacks. I am being inspired in my writings about my own experiences and from my work as a counsellor. Therapy is a gift and it can change lives!