Overcoming Trauma

it’s 10am Wednesday, and my first morning meeting is getting underway. I just started this new job, and it’s training week. This is my dream job. I originally applied for it in May of this year. As training is taking place I begin to think about how far I’ve come from May until now. After completing my three rounds of interviews in June, prior to the first week of August, I had not heard from this job. During that month and a half period my troubles with finding quality employment continued to persist (see: My Bout With Unemployment). I eventually landed a part time job at a liquor store which was not bad but did not come close to paying the bills. By the end of July I was under the impression that I was not going to hear back from this job that I desperately wanted and needed.

When I made up in my mind to give up hope I decided it was time to start from scratch, and I started looking for a second part time job. If I could not get the “big boy” job with the salary and benefits, doing something that I enjoy, and that utilizes my skill set, then I decided I’d work 60 plus hours a week to survive. I may not grow in the way I want to working two part time jobs, but I was ready to do whatever it was I had to do. I was tired of waiting for an opportunity that was obviously not coming. I must have been elated then, when I got the call back that first week of August saying I start in two weeks right?

Wrong.

I did not know how to feel. Here I am for the past three months trying to find a job that is not in sales that would allow me to put my Master’s degree in psychology to good use, and put me in a position not to fail again, and I get the exact opposite of that. I was conflicted because I did really want this job three months ago, but now I was unsure because I had lost hope and I was afraid. I did not want the same thing to happen with this job that happened with my other job. i did not want to put in a lot of effort, and end up having nothing to show for it. The problem was, I really had no other options available to me, and I needed money. So I take the job, and now this week while I’m sitting in this training meeting I start having images and sensations of getting in a car crash. This was happening all week but Wednesday was different.

The significance of my car accident is the timing in when it happened (See: My Bout With Unemployment). At the time of what should have been a life ending car accident, I was in a good place in my life. I was working at my school as the graduate assistant and finally starting to get comfortable in that role. I was making money on the side to afford my bills, and I had a decent social life, all the things that matter to me. And just like that, all of those things were taken away from me in almost an instant once I got into that car accident. And not only did I lose all of those things, it has been well over a year and those things have yet to be fully restored.

So here I am at this new job, my dream job. I feel as though the trajectory of my life is starting to change but all I can think about is what happen last time I thought my life was going well. In that moment on Wednesday, while I’m in training, thoughts start running through my mind. I can feel myself getting hit again, the impact of the collision, my car be launched across a four lane highway, my head bouncing around, my body being jerked, and everything else that came along with that: me being subsequently let go from my graduate assistant position, working for free, losing all of my money and a good chuck of my friendships. The intensity of all these emotions and feelings hit me like a ton of bricks in a matter of moments. All the while, I’m trying to be present while my manager helps my coworkers and I set up our work emails.

While this is happening one word drops in my spirit, “trauma”. In that moment it dawned on me, that I am and have been traumatized, and not just by my car accident. After giving it thought, realistically, I’ve been living in a traumatized state for at least 2-3 years. For the longest I’ve felt as though I’m a shadow of my former self. Facebook has this memory feature where they will show you things you posted years ago on a particular day. I’ve been checking my Facebook memories everyday this summer, and the only thing that comes to mind every time I read something that I posted years ago is, “where did that Kenneth go?”. Yes I was younger and rough around the edges, but that was me in raw form. And while those are only posts, I can remember who I was back then. I was confident, tenacious, bold, courageous, and everything in between. Now I’m hard press to be able to tell you who I am in a causal conversation.

I find it interesting that this revelation has taken place now too because, there is so much that I am ready to do with my life; but I recognize that I cannot do those things until I deal with this. And to be honest, I do not know what “dealing with this” actually looks like.

As such, I am sad to say that I am taking some time off from blogging. I do not want to because this blog has meant so much to me over the past two months; But that’s exactly why I have to step away for a bit. I need the mental capacity that I give to this blog to work on myself, so that way I can come back and continue to make quality content. I know I do not have a large following yet, but I was never in it for that reason in the first place. This has always been and will continue to always be about the importance and power of story telling. But for those early supporters, thank you, I see you, and this is just part of the journey.

I will be better off for taking this extra time for myself, no matter how little it may seem. That being said, I still plan on posting “Food’s for thought” sporadically, and I may post one or two items from my personal journals, but no guaranteed weekly posts, or newly created content for at least the month of September. I am thankful that I have been able to build such a strong catalog of pieces over the past couple months and I encourage reading those. I believe I put out some good and creative content especially for the month of August.

When I come back, I will give a full report on my progress. I will be better, and as such My Black Perspective will be better too. talk to you all soon, signing off…

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