The following discussion on trauma captures only a small part of the story. It is the honest and heartfelt accounts of two individuals (and Windhorse clinicians)—Polly Banerjee Gallagher and myself. We were chosen to share our stories, not because we are special or that our stories are unique, nor that we have completed a process of working with our traumas. Rather, we speak because the experience of trauma is ubiquitous; it is known to all. And in sharing we desire for you who listen to find some peace in your own stories.
However ubiquitous trauma is, it does not manifest in a single form. Trauma is as unique in its expression in our lives as we are in our expression of ourselves in the world… Because of this reality, there is no discussion of a single way to treat trauma, or even the idea that trauma is something that can be treated away. What you will find are stories of acceptance and integration, of a living on-going process, of a recognition that our traumas are not a thing to be removed or hidden, but a part of our lives. This is not to say that trauma defines us or determines our value, only that it is what we make of it.
We wish for you to listen to these stories with an open heart and open mind, that you may find some place of resonance with us as tellers and offer compassion for our vulnerability. And, in doing so, may you offer yourself the same kindness, and compassion in your personal journey to make friends with your trauma.
I really appreciated the focus on the subjectivity of trauma. We all experience the world so differently and it is helpful to hear the difference in Dave and Polly’s experiences and how that guides their work and path in life. Trauma is such a prevalent issue and I think it needs more attention, especially on a systemic level that doesn’t just look at what’s happening right now but also how our actions in the present will create future challenges for ourselves and each other further down the line. Thank you.