I left the Welsh Valleys at 17 years young, suitcase in hand, escaping childhood sexual abuse, unfortunately stepping into several years of domestic violence. The result of 8 years of trauma left me with complex PTSD, flashbacks and intrusive memories, severely anxious and a self-esteem that was on the floor, which then saw me entering a string of destructive relationships. After being bullied by a particularly narcissistic female boss and suffering post natal depression, I realised I was repeating unhealthy patterns, being triggered too often and I needed to change, monumentally. And I was ready…
My recovery journey began aged 23. To date I’ve had lots of personal therapy, with several different therapists of different m0dalities, over many years. I put myself on wellbeing courses, read self-help books, watched ted talks and soaked up as much knowledge as I could. I learned how to self care, using exercise, diet, yoga, meditation and mindfulness, creativity and lots of practical tools. I surrounded myself with a supportive network of friends, family, therapists and professional services, which I am eternally grateful for.
Finally feeling comfortable in my own shoes, I realised that I wanted to pass my knowledge and tools that I had learned, that had put me back together when I felt broken. I wanted to make what I had been through mean something, to help others recover, so I trained as an integrative counsellor. I don’t believe that one way fixes all, so I continued to add strings to my bow,
I followed it up with the Award in Education and Training and began writing and teaching wellbeing courses for mental health charities. I saw a lot of complex trauma cases entering the therapy room and so I followed my passion and specialised by completing a Level 7 PgDip in Traumatology and PTSD, in which I learned 6 different trauma-focussed approaches, somatic training, inner child work and more recently a foundation in traumatic dissociation under the support of the Clinic for Dissociative studies.
Life isn’t a dress rehearsal. Working on yourself and facing everything in therapy may feel scary and daunting, but its not as difficult as continuing to live with difficulty – you have a choice. Be brave and love yourself enough. You can heal and feel empowered again. .