Where Trauma Hides

This happened today and I chose to ignore it after writing about it on my phone’s notepad application. Then, my boyfriend came home, and I was trying to make us dinner, with my head down, eyes down…he had just come home from a long day’s work, and the last thing he needed was to see me cry.

But then I opened my mouth and those big water balloon tears started flowing again. And I cried and laughed all at once. Saying “I’m sorry. I’m sorry.” I could feel his puzzled look and sense his anxiety, wondering “Oh shit. Now what?”

Each time I would catch my breath, wipe off the mascara from my cheeks and think I was done, and my body was heaving, the way a person who just learns of a death does, folding in on itself. As if your mind and heart want to collapse into the tiniest space they can occupy.

He took the pan off the stove and stood there, looking at me, waiting for me to explain. I was struck speechless for a few minutes. No words would come out. I knew he was probably worrying, wondering if something bad had happened.

I told him I was holding back a panic attack, and I guess, I guess….I guess this EMDR therapy is unearthing old roots.  There are heavy feet trampling on my carefully displayed garden mask. The structure is gone. It’s raining. Storming. The sun is there and then it disappears. I hear the birds and smile. I want to die. Someone has come along with a plow and turned my insides towards the outside world. WITH my permission. And it’s painful. Joyful? Confusing. And my body is purging. Visceral responses to something long gone. Safe now. Okay to let it go. Get it out…no judgment. No rules. No timelines. No assignments except to do the next indicated step or action. Even if that action is nothing. And to be honest. And to speak. Chest forward, chin to the sky. I’m not used to feeling. My body has received the signal that it’s okay to come out now. What a terrifying and beautiful experience. I felt like I needed to write it down, so copied and pasted the message I wrote to myself on the bike earlier.


I was riding the bike to nowhere and reading “Overcoming Trauma through Yoga.”

I had eaten plenty today. But about 30 minutess in, my sweat turned ice cold & my head twirled and I couldn’t tell if I was going to pass out or have a panic attack.

I sat still for a minute, trying to catch my breath. My heart was thumping out of my chest.

“It’s okay. You’re probably reacting to the book. It’s okay. Breathe. Breathe.”

I started chanting “Ommmm” and “Ramaaaaa” but couldn’t quite catch it. Went upstairs, ate some fresh strawberries & yogurt. Came back downstairs & picked up the book again.

I am so incredibly overwhelmed by The Truth held in this information that I feel as though the door to my Dungeon just creaked open a tiny bit further.

I’m smart. How do I not know this stuff? Why haven’t I been reading more about psychology and trauma and physiological somatic expressions of pain?

Perhaps because I’ve known this already and didn’t want to hear it. Reading these words is like hearing someone say “Guess what. You made it.”

I remember making it to the finish line of the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer. I’d walked 39.3 miles in 2 days. As I heard everyone cheering and saw my boyfriend with his fancy camera in hand, I cleared the Finish then my vision went black. Apparently my knees collapsed and I fell straight to the grass.

I hear EMT workers and I feel him holding my hand. People are laughing. A family friend is snapping pictures. Apparently I’m alive. And I made it.


The Cockroach, again and again. Thank God we made it. But it’s time to begin.

Copyright © 2018 Kissing The Cockroach All Rights Reserved.

~ by Kissing The Cockroach® on March 9, 2012.

11 Responses to “Where Trauma Hides”

  1. That was an absolutely beautiful expression of your innermost feelings. Being honest with ourselves can be the first step to healing. You seem like an extraordinary person (someone I would like). You are a great writer, you are cultured, you are into fitness and health, and you are a good person (thanks for the cancer walk). As you crossed that finish line you should have cleaned the mascara marks, and realized that you are doing damn good despite the trauma! Keep kissing!

  2. You write about your experiences with such raw honesty, I love it. I absolutely hate what mental baggage and “healing” can do to us, almost feels like it hurts more than relieve anything in the beginning. But each step forward is that, forward. I hope the panic attacks subside for you, they are the devil. I use to have them about 5 times a day… I was scared to death to even drive for fear of killing someone during an episode.
    Keep up the fight! You are remarkable for your strength and honesty. ♥
    And your humor rocks by the way… not speaking of this post… but from other comments and so on. ♥

  3. Raw and courageous writing…

  4. […] told her about the panic attack I had on Friday. I was so happy to make it through without having to take a xanax. (And without […]

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