Passionate About Inspiring Others
During my childhood, I was a victim of abuse, multiple types. Like most people who suffer from the aftermath of emotional abuse and neglect; emotional developmental delays are often painted on our life’s murals. I did not receive counseling to cope with the emotional damage that affected and stained me, so I struggled without knowing; assuming that, my life was not correlated with the experiences from childhood. The stains of my traumas left the stain from Macbeth, a spot that would not come out. I felt like I could not remove it, so I had to learn to live with it. I felt damage, unclean, broken, and I suppressed and bypassed emotions because it interfered with my daily survival.
Even when I became a mother, I still did not fully realize the impact of my childhood sexual abuse and traumatic experiences. I did not recognize the correlation between my thought process, my learning ability, my behavior, my adult choices, and my childhood trauma, I was running away from those parts of me all the time so instead my beautiful brain gave me the gifts of suppression and avoidance. The price to pay for those gifts was chaos. Eventually, I realized that I was being affected emotionally, psychologically, physically, and spiritually.
I was just trying to make it one day at a time. I was not paying attention to the damage I was causing myself or others during the process. Only when I started my spiritual journey did I fully understand the damage that was underneath my functioning. It took a lot but I had to be willing to feel the pain. I had created multiple systems to avoid this pain in order to discover what was on the other side.
During my studies at Cambridge College in Boston, I did extensive research on sexual abuse and its implications in learning environments. During this search, I discovered parts of myself in the statistical findings of what people who experienced trauma experienced in the classroom. After completing that research for my master’s in education, I realized I wanted to learn more about the impact, ramifications, and day-to-day residue that sexual abuse and other traumas leave behind. I have begun to see myself as a series of symptoms tied to these events and wondered where my identity lied with those findings.
One of the things I learned was that abuse affects several parts of the brain that could shape the thought processes as well as behavior. “Sexual abuse dramatically affects both the structure and chemistry of the development of the brain causing behavioral and learning problems that plagues children. However, the brain changes do not have to be permanent. Timely interventions can help to rewire the brain and put development back on track” (Kendall, 2002).
Through research, I learned about the paralyzing effects abuse and many other emotionally traumatic experiences can have on an individual’s life. This was a defining moment of my life. I knew that I wanted to help people learn to cope with their experiences instead of being imprisoned by them. I wanted to assist people who wanted to live in a body, mind and spirit they understood, instead of one they were afraid of or did not know. I had been there and I did not want someone to be there alone.
With this epiphany, I went back to school for a second Masters in Mental Health Counseling and that degree changed my Life. I discovered that there are fundamental principles of mind, brain, body and spirit that are damaged and fragmented as a result of abuse, neglect, trauma and psychological damage. I realized that I had to understand these essential principles if I was to get the change I wanted to see in the world. My start began with the mirror.
Coming from a third world country, therapy was never an option that people could use as a primary means of solving problems thirty years ago, at least not those from my socio-economic background. We were taught to press on regardless. If it did not kill you, it would only make you stronger. Keep it moving; it’s already happened you can’t change it. Additionally, protecting family secrets was paramount. That mindset and culture created a problem of not dealing with the problem, which became a habit that I used to cope with problems that I would face.
I thought I was a victim until I learned that a victim relives trauma and often allows it to control his or her life. I did not want to be a victim; I became a survivor. I did not want to be ruled by my traumatic past. I wanted to be free. My freedom would only be discovered when I allowed my self to be open, vulnerable, ready to heal and spiritually ready to choose the path that I was chosen to walk.
Master's of Arts in Education M.A.Ed.
Masters in Clinical Mental Health Counseling.
Certified Anger Management Specialist