Jill's blog: Process the Unprocessable

clock Released On 14 May 2024

Jill's blog: Process the Unprocessable

After the birth of my second child, my brain went into overdrive. And not in a healthy way.

Suddenly, I was struggling with things I couldn’t remember and feelings that felt so intensely deep-seeded I was certain I was going crazy.

I wasn’t. I was just trauma triggered.

For various reasons this concept is not one that is spoken about very often. Unless you are already in therapy it is highly unlikely that anyone will say to you “when you have a child you might end up experiencing emotional flashbacks to when you were young. And at every stage of your child’s life that coincides with something traumatic that happened to you, you might be triggered.”

Once this happened, I had a decision to make; do I pick apart what I thought I already dealt with, or do I push it all back down and carry on as much as I am able? I chose the former.

Maybe for better, maybe for worse but I am now 4 and a bit years down the road of conjuring up and purging out a whole host of unresolved feelings. Some I can remember and connect to specific situations, some I cannot as I was too young, and others that are attached to things I have blocked. And though I have had awareness of them, I did not want to unlock the door and walk through the memory.

But the body remembers.

And it holds it all until it feels safe enough to process it, which often comes with flashback to the experience. In physical, emotional, psychological, and cognitive ways.

But asking for help when the darkness creeps in is just a very difficult thing to do. How do you share your darkest thoughts with someone without the fear that they will judge or misunderstand you? That they will view you as weak and broken. The concept of being seen as fragile goes directly against what I need for my personal sense of self-worth. Yet maybe I need to admit that sometimes I am fragile. Sometimes, when I am feeling at my most broken, I have to accept that the lack of help and support might be what turns my shattered pieces into dust. And I don’t actually want to blow away.

That realisation has led to some big changes for me. Changes in the way I look after myself. Changes in the way I let people in. Changes in the way I manage those moments when the world seems unforgiving and unrelenting. Over these last four years I have learned that always standing alone may offer you protection, but it does not offer you healing. Not at the cellular level. And if I take a moment to truly ask myself what I want out of this life, it is to feel whole within myself. To replace the pain and the darkness with joy and light and I can’t do that if I keep myself in the shadows. 

Jill is an American ex-pat living her best English life on the border of London and Surrey. She spends her days pretending she knows what she’s doing, creating some fun things along the way. With a passion for storytelling and the gumption of a New Yorker, she’s raising two cheeky, clever boys with deep imaginations and an annoyingly cunning use of language. With a husband, cat and hamster along for the ride, life is never boring. Even if sometimes a bit too stressful.


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