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Transcript for Episode 6: Some Light Trauma Talk

Allison Sweatman & Andrea Coston

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Here’s the transcript for episode 006 of the Trauma-Informed Everything podcast:

I’m Allison

and I’m Andie and welcome to trauma informed everything.

On this podcast we examine how trauma shapes our individual family and societal experiences.

We demystify trauma and promote a world of trauma informed everything because like it or not trauma informed everything.

As always remember our disclaimer? Everything we say is for informational purposes only,

and nothing on this show is meant to replace treatment from a licensed mental health professional. Thanks for listening and enjoy the show.

Hey, all you cool cats and kittens. This is Andie here to finally use the marketing minor my dad paid for. He’ll be so pleased to hear that we are inviting you to continue to grow your working knowledge of trauma in practical and applicable ways. Just head on over to our page. treon and you can peruse the different levels to find a perfect fit for your needs and your budget. Just remember, my dad will want to cut of every Patreon subscription. But for real, our Patreon will provide you with action steps, practical tools and useful resources that help you take your knowledge of trauma from this podcast to real life application. From meditations to journal prompts to even getting to interact with us on a more intimate level. Our Patreon is set up to apply these trauma concepts to your real life. Check out the link in the show notes or go to patreon.com slash trauma informed everything to become a patron. See you there.

I don’t know I want to say good morning, Alison. But that’s not good morning. Good morning. It’s not the morning show. We recognize that. Talking about trauma is heavy and it brings up a lot internally and in our systems and there’s a lot of processing that has to happen. For all of us, those who make the podcast and those who listen to the podcast, I tend to be exhausted

after we record sometimes. whenever it’s the heavy stuff,

yeah, yeah. Sometimes I just stare into space today. Uh huh. Um, so this week, we’re gonna make it a little bit lighter, because you can’t necessarily make trauma, a light conversation, but we are going to attempt to not overwhelm you with information.

We’re not making light of trauma. No, you’re just talking about trauma. Like Turley. I mean, hey, this is our This is our off the cuff episode. I’m allowed to make up words. That’s a rule I just made

so. So not only are we making up words, we’re making a whole Yes, exactly.

Let’s get started with some self disclosure. I want to what jump in by asking you You Andie, What’s got you? dysregulated? Is there? Is there anything? Boy?

How about we reverse the comp the question and say it would take a shorter amount of time to ask me what hasn’t happened

we’re at the end of summer so yeah, the end of summer. Um

we were we were talking about this earlier we were recording a morning show for our patrons but patrons patrons pay whatever. That’s where I am. So we were we were discussing what has us dysregulated and my big thing right now and I think this goes for 99.9% of the parenting population. The other point 01 percent probably has a nanny is probably feeling like we are. I reserve three months of full time parenting for summer when I have all of my children home And we do activities and we make summer fun and it’s much more one on one relationship building. But because of where I am at my trauma and in my mental health that takes a lot from me, so I have to, like, conserve my energy during school time to make summer a positive experience for my children. But in our case, summer started it the end of March when school shut down for the pandemic. Thank you. COVID. Yeah, thanks. Thanks a bunch. Um, so where am I being dysregulated with my children. I ran out of my energy stores about three to four weeks ago. And in the words of the current favorite musical being played at our house, I am flying by the seat of my pants.

I hear you and I think you’re right that a lot of Parents can relate. If they listen to this, like in real time, they’re gonna be like, Oh, yes, ma’am. Same here. I think also that just makes me think about how the long term way to remedy what you’re talking about is to build capacity. Right? Like, like, the hope is that someday you’ll have three and a half months of intentional time and you like you’ll build that capacity in that resilience, but building that capacity takes years. And right now, right now you’re parenting on credit. And so it’s like it that capacity can’t be built. If, you know, this pandemic just completely hit us all with no really no warning, and so well, some warning, but I won’t get into that. We had more warning than our government wants us to think but all that to say it wouldn’t have been enough for us to build the capacity to have a six month long summer, if we are not used to that as as parents and and so anyway, that’s not necessarily my experience but I think that that’s what a lot of people are feeling right now Andie just to affirm you.

So thank you, Alison for being like, yeah, my walk it’s, I’m, I’m taking a walk on the edge of the cliffs of insanity.

Oh, oh, I um, I really hope that you can find some, some rest and whatever you need. Even if it’s little glimpses here and there throughout the day, that’s really hard to do when you’re just already in survival mode. So

it is because when you’re in survival mode, when your trauma brain has kicked in, when you are in your sympathetic nervous system and your primal brain, part of your brain is running the show. It doesn’t want to engage in self care. You It’s, it’s like a runaway train, I want to stay on this track. Because if I can focus that 26 days from now, by the grace of God, my children will be leaving my house for school. I just I’m so focused on that end, I’m so focused on that end. And I’m like a train, I just got to get there, I have to focus on that. And so my brain is stuck in that survival mode, and he doesn’t want to jump off and do self care. It doesn’t want to let me recharge myself. Um, so even at night, like the kids go to bed, and I do have some time to myself, my brain won’t let me recharge. That’s another area where I’m dysregulated because I am like, okay, the kids are going to go to bed and in my logical brain, like, right, I’m going to do this and this and this to recharge my body, my mind. I’m going to go to sleep at the right time. And we’re gonna have a better day tomorrow. And then the kids go to bed. My primal brain takes over. Because it’s 10 o’clock at night, nothing good after two happens. And instead of being responsible and going to bed, instead of doing something that’s productive, I participate in more activities that lead to more dysregulation. Like, I’ll binge binge watch Netflix. Mm hm.

Like a helpful thing. It’s not like, yeah, I hear you.

Yeah. Because, you know, there’s times when binge watching is totally fine. Like, it’s fun. It is self care. And there’s other times where what I’m doing is shutting my brain down, and I’m not letting my brain integrate itself. So I’m staying in that survival mode and continuously. Yeah, yeah, it’s like

it’s sort of like when you need to turn off a lamp, but instead of turning off the lamp, you throw a scarf over it. And you just dim it just enough to like get by. And I don’t know, I don’t know what I’m trying to say. But that like that, that feeling of I’m doing just enough to continue to survive, but I’m not solving the root of the problem and like knowing that you’re doing that, but not being able to, like, address it. Because tomorrow’s coming and I just,

yeah, yeah. And it’s hard when when you live with trauma, I call it trauma brain and I know a lot of people do when you have trauma brain, you have a really hard time wanting to take care of yourself. It’s easier to stay in your negative habits, your self harming habits than it is to jump over the hump of wanting to take care of yourself. And so I’m to the point where I have decided that I need to make myself like a schedule and a list for my own self is tell myself because my wing three will take over if I make myself a list or a schedule of things that I need to accomplish or do for self care. I’ll do it because there’s a list.

Yeah. Well, I’ve told our Patreon friends that I make embarrassingly detailed lists for just a regular day. And I know that that’s because executive dysfunction is super real for a person with PTSD or ADHD, what have you. And so, if I’m having one of those days, I will literally write out the steps to cooking breakfast, you know, or like, like, I can’t just put meal prep on the to do list like it has to be step by step, and very detailed the way that you would treat a toddler and I don’t I’ve, it took me a while to not be ashamed of that to just be like, this is what I need. You know what the other option is? It doesn’t get done, you know. And so, and it also reminds me of and I think for people who don’t experience trauma brain, but they have kids, this will be helpful. It’s kind of like that. newborn fog, like if you if you have a newborn and you lived in a newborn fog for at least a few weeks after you brought them home, whether that was from lack of sleep, or just all of the stress, and maybe you experienced some legitimate postpartum issues, like that kind of thing. I would, I would compare it to that, like, for parents, it really does come down to, like, everything feels new, when it should not be new, you know. And it’s such a learning curve. And it’s like, for me, for me, the key has been to release the shame around meeting my own needs in that, you know, because it can, it can just compound things. I think, for a long time, when I was writing those detailed lists, and I was like, I am a grown a woman, and I have to treat myself like a toddler sometimes. Instead of berating myself for needing that just meet my need, and then life can happen, you know, and it’s like, this is just what I need to do. You know, that’s actually a pretty ablest way to treat ourselves, especially if we live, you know, on a neurodivergent point in the spectrum of the way that brains function. And so, yeah, I think I was just covering my mouth because I was wiping my eyes. But anyway, I think that’s really important to remember to cut ourselves some slack. At least identify the shame when it comes up. That’s the first step so that you can you know, kind of stop living in the shame.

And that’s where I’m at like, I will go to bed and I’ll be so mad at myself and then then the next morning and I’m like, failed again. Which makes me then when you wake up with the this concept that you’ve already failed you. All you do is wake up. Yeah. And you know, to me, I wake up and it’s, you know, full disclosure. It’s nine o’clock in the morning and my children have been watching TV since seven. And you’re a low screentime family because it triggers them They don’t function well when they’ve had a lot of screen time. And when you wake up with an idea that you’ve already failed, that just puts this negative vibe over the rest of your day and, and you know, going back to being neuro divergent, and it’s so ingrained in us being raised in a capitalistic society to have your life look a certain way that productivity is, is your, like, rating scale. Hmm,

yeah, it’s your it’s your measure of worthiness.

And so, if I am because I’m awake, three, there’s that I need to be I need to have produce something today. I need to have something to show. But I have to reframe that for myself in my own self care. And so writing that list that seems so infantile, like literally my list would say feed yourself.

Don’t wash shower.

A lot of neurodiverse people will understand this because our brains are so focused on sensory processing and survival and regulating ourselves internally that we do forget to eat. And we do forget to go to the bathroom. My husband makes fun of me because I’ll be like, it’ll be like four o’clock, guys. And I’ll be like, Oh, I go the bathroom and he’ll look at me and be like, you want First of all, why you have to say that out loud. Second of all, like you’ve not gone today and in I know that, as you know, somebody with ADHD and trauma brain, and SPD that like, my brain is not paying attention to my own bodily functions, because it’s trying to keep itself running. Mm hmm.

Yeah. Yeah. And that’s part of the bodywork, like, like dropping in to your body. You know, just like asking your body what it wants. Again, sounds like a really woowoo thing, but it’s like that becoming aware of body bodily sensation. Is what re embodies you, you know, this whole separation of mind from body that society really wants us to believe because it makes us more productive. For most people, there are some people whose bodies are used, you know, like athletes and stuff like that but in their, in their job but like for the most part, employers and the system of capitalism benefits from us forgetting that we have a body and so we’re finding ourselves that by yeah 15 minute breaks, reminding ourselves that by by listening to those cues, even the cue of I should go to the bathroom before my bladder is literally bursting. You know, those those cues like I think it took me a really long time. Yeah, it’s pretty recent. I think that I drop in like that at all and I know that I’m not well whenever That’s what’s happening. It’s like I’m not going to the bathroom for several hours or I’m not stretching at all for several hours and I’m walking, hunched over because of, you know, me forgetting that my body needs to stand up every couple of hours. But

yeah, my body will, what I like to call it retaliate against me, where if I have gone for an extended period of time, like this entire pandemic, without taking care of it, it will pick a day, just a random day, usually a day that I have something important that needs to be accomplished, or it picks a holiday or what we like to call trauma days and it will shut down. Mm hmm. And I mean, like literally shut down. I will wake up and not be able to move or I will feel ill I will not be ill like I don’t have a sickness, but my body looks like when the toy runs out of the battery and it just doesn’t know how Yeah, yeah. And I’ll have to text my husband from bed and be like, I literally can’t get out of

bed. I’m tapping out today. Yeah.

And thankfully, we’ve come to a place like he didn’t understand that at first that my body would take over and it does my body takes over and I have no physical control over feeling that but so that’s the days where I’m like, Oh, yeah, sorry about that, buddy. Yeah,

yeah. Oh, I love that. I love that you just talked to your body. I don’t mean to, I don’t mean to like Therap eyes you right now. But there’s a there’s a an embodiment coach that I follow and really like a lot of what she says and she’s she talks about making the most generous assumptions of your body. So, so treating your body like a person that has always had your best interests at heart, even when they shut down on you

that day, you know, in that moment that I do recognize my body as like I will talk to it because I realized that it’s trying to tell me something that I my brain has been ignoring. Yeah. And yeah, I think that’s really, really powerful.

Andie, what’s your favorite book about trauma?

Seriously, do you even have to ask? I mean, Alison, do you even know me? Well, what’s mine?

Uh,

I mean, exactly. That’s what I thought. Okay. Okay, how about this? On the count of three? We’re both gonna say our favorite trauma book. Cool. Cool. Yeah. Okay. All right. All right. Ready? 123 the body keeps the score. I know, right? Oh, good.

No, it took me months to finish because there was so much good stuff to absorb and learn and fly.

Yes, me too. That’s why when I recommend it to people, I tell them to take their time. It’s gonna be a lot. You know what I mean? Oh,

totally. Oh, wait, wait, wait, here’s an idea. Here’s my did hear me out.

Okay. Okay, you ready? Pretty good.

Let’s let’s you and I get some folks together to read this process and apply the concepts from the body keeps the score. Hey, why don’t we start in the fall?

Oh, that sounds like a good idea. Okay, okay, but seriously, y’all. This book is thick. It’s important, and it’s key for understanding trauma in the real world. That’s why we’re choosing it for our first ever fall book club. Starting this September.

We’ll have regular online gathering printables to help you process while you read journal prompts, and more. We want you to get the most out of this incredibly important piece of trauma research. So we’ll be there with you every step of the way to sign up, click the link in the notes for this show or go to Allison Sweatman comm slash fall book club.

So what’s got me dysregulated? I skipped therapy last week I I’m in every new weaker and weaker

and new way that people introduce themselves on the to weaker. What about you? I’m a fine

monthly, I really should be a weaker weak layer. Um, but you know as it stands, therapy is expensive. And even though my brain is part of my body, it’s not covered on my health insurance. So

get into that. No,

no, no, no, no, but I cancelled because I had something that day and totally could have moved in or out in on any other week I would have. But I was like I’m actually doing, you know, I’m doing all right. And my therapist is really understanding and so I did cancel a couple of days before the appointment. The day of the appointment comes and it was a horrible day, just a horrible day, as as it turns out, I did need that appointment. But instead of, you know, rescheduling, for sometimes sooner, I’m holding out I mean, I that’s ultimately, you know, the goal is to have as many of those self regulating skills in my toolbox as possible, and I definitely pulled a lot of them out. And it’s all right, so, skipping therapy was quite dysregulated. But I’d say I recovered, I was able to find find solace. And the The other thing that dysregulated me is the full moon, which was yesterday, but I think it only dysregulated me because it dysregulated my kid and it was just a really tough day but But friends, today’s another day, and everything’s like it’s like, we’re all right. Today has already been better than yesterday the full moon the height of the full moon. So, yeah, that’s that’s what’s got me dysregulated I can’t wait to airport again.

Yeah, go. Do you think when you say you know, like you woke up that day and it was a bad day? Do you think that your body and brain have gotten into a rhythm that when it realized that day it was not getting it was not going to get what it expected. You know, like for us, for me, this is a very random example. But for me, our kids will have snow days and they will be dysregulated on snow days because their rhythm has been broken up. So I’m just curious on your thoughts, that your body woke up that day that you were usually supposed to have therapy and then when it realized that it wasn’t going to have therapy was like, I’m out.

Yeah, I believe in that too. But it was actually It was earlier that morning, that bleep hit the fan. And so it was like, just it was it was one of those days when, you know, my husband and I were just kind of like missing each other communication wise, and we’re very much on the same wavelength like 95% of the time. And so I was like, Oh, perfect day for that to happen for us to like, not really find a way to communicate well, and, and, and then so that happened. And we have some big shifts that are like coming in our family. And instead of those shifts being exciting, they were really, really anxiety producing for both of us. And so as we were trying to process that to one another, and we weren’t really understanding where each other was coming from. It was like, we just shouldn’t talk right now. Like, let’s just take a break. Yeah. And also my husband. Yeah, exactly. My husband is working for home right now too. And we we like the time that we have, but we definitely have to respect one another’s time in the office like, we split the day in half. And then like the extra hours so that we can like get all our work in half and either before the kids wake up, or after they go to bed, but the first half of the day, one of us is in the office, the second half the other ones in the office, getting getting our work done. And so all that to say, that day looked the way that it always does. But it got started out with some miscommunication. And that was hard, but we settled it and everything’s okay now.

So yeah,

I hate those days when my husband and I are off, like it’s, you know, usually you’re like two cogs in a wheel and you’re functioning fine. And things are rolling, and then you wake up and sometimes we can tell just by going back to my body, just shut it down. Sometimes you can just look at your spouse’s face in the morning and you’re like Whoo Yeah, and sometimes it’s more subliminal where we each take our you know, we set our boundaries or find ways to avoid each other can and cannot be healthy but yeah, yeah those days can be so frustrating and yeah, yeah. less less than less than I’d like do we actually look at each other and say we’re just off it’s gonna be okay usually usually ends up in an argument about how we parked the car in the alleyway.

Yeah, yeah, we have.

Like I said, we’ve we have found a groove with the pandemic and the way that our house functions day to day but if one of us needs for the schedule to change a little bit because of like a meeting or something like that, and the other one isn’t feeling particularly giving of their office time.

It can be like, oh, oh, here we are, you know.

But yeah, it’s

just got this visual of you and your husband and like a Western showdown. Where to like hear the music?

Yes, yeah, that’s what it’s like whenever we’re fighting over office time. No, I mean, we we really do respect each other with it. But like last week, the kids got talking about screen time leading to dysregulation it gives the illusion of regulation and then the fallout is just the worst. And so we we did a lot of screentime last week and over the weekend, so that we could that was my second to last week of classes like I’m finishing up the semester this week, and I don’t know we yesterday was also I say it was the full moon but it was also the first Monday back after having about seven days of like, yeah, you can watch Mickey Yeah, yeah, can play on the iPad, you know, so that we could be Get a lot of things done that needed to get done. And then Monday came, and I didn’t think about how there would be, we would have to come down from that, you know, and the adjustment period might be a little more intense than I had prepared for So, But to answer your question about did my do, I think my body knew. I think that something that happened that day was whenever I did feel like Oh, actually really could use this therapy session that I cancelled the feeling of, oh, why did I cancel that only made it worse, you know, like, because there was a time a couple of years ago with my therapist when I was like, I’m good, I’m good. And I would cancel actually, pretty frequently. And I’m past that, but you know, well, part of the reason actually that I cancelled was because of a trip that I wasn’t going to take but ended up not taking. And so there was then it was like well, I cancelled for that and then thought, but I I’m gonna be fine. And now I’m totally not fine because I didn’t get to take the trip, you know, like the trip was not going to replace therapy, but it was gonna be therapeutic. So it’s just this whole thing. So all that to say, I’ll see her next week. My therapist, I wish I could say her name. Maybe I will someday because she has such a great therapist name. She doesn’t

do anything. Yeah, it’s the best therapist.

So we were we are pressing on and we are accessing our our toolbox. We are staying within our window of tolerance. I’m trying to think of all the all the therapy words that we use. Yeah. All the all the terms. We’re staying within our window of tolerance by using the tools that we have developed and accessing the resilience that we have fostered over the past couple of years in our therapeutic relationship.

Yeah, sometimes I’ll have sometimes I’ll talk like that to my husband when we’re having an argument and he’ll be like, can you Not?

Yeah, like, like Alison, save it whenever I find things in TV shows or movies or something which we’re going to get to, but whenever I find things like that, that connect to trauma or oppression or systemic oppression, my husband’s just like, Allison, can you just watch the movie? Yeah, we just enjoy the movie. He doesn’t really but sometimes he’ll be like, wha wha? What? Can I point those things out? But it’s hard not to see it. What do you want me to do? Just like turn off my brain. You’re just like, like, stop seeing things the way that I see them. No, no, not gonna happen. So. So Andie, you told me what has got you dysregulated but I want to ask you what’s saving your life right now?

Haha. Ah, that’s a great question. Um, you know, I’m not going to boxes of wine which is not you know what saving my life in all honesty in the words of my friend Allison I am going to bring myself to the table

yet bring bring all of you yeah

all of me a lot of my things the things that are saving me that are my coping skills are not healthy and I know that I’m and I’m to a point in my trauma healing where I have created accountability and those unhealthy coping skills and you know, honestly, wine is at the end of the day, I just want a glass of wine. Um, because that the the alcohol reaches the part of my primal brain and help that, you know, chill out. I’m Elsa saving my life parks, getting my children into nature and getting myself into nature or getting them into spaces where they can engage and play by themselves. With me watching while I can take give my brain a little break. Yesterday we had a really rough moment and I just yelled get in the car. Mm hmm. And I didn’t know where we were going. I didn’t know what we were going to do. But I knew being in my space in our house, which were so sick of being in our house. I knew that that was we need to get out. Yeah. We had an X. So I made an exit plan. Like we’re just going to get out and we drove to a park that we haven’t been to in a long time. Yeah. And they ate for an hour by themselves. Well, I sat in

the car. Yeah, they just needed the outdoors.

Yeah, they did. Yeah. They needed other there were other children there. There. Yeah. And I mean, I sat with I was very present in their safety. Well, that we have to pause a second What do you need? Yeah, what do you need? Okay, thank you.

I

thank you for watching. thinkers. Hi, thanks for letting me know.

I make it a wish.

Our podcast just got interrupted because my children needed to tell me that it was 1111 and it was time to make a wish. Oh, thanks, kids. Yeah.

Oh my gosh, how cute

is so cute. Um, anyway, back to what Ben saving me, um, man. Honestly, my work, my work. There’s so much happening just I mean, there’s this podcast and then there’s other things happening in my life, where I am being. I wouldn’t even say nudged it would be pushed off into a new territory, I guess, into work that I have been yearning and longing and preparing to do for literally my entire life and now I’m stepping into being pushed into this territory of I’m not being asked anymore I am being told. Kind of like when you messaged me in over Instagram and you said to me, we’re going to do a podcast again, sir.

It’s gonna be called trauma informed everything. We’ll figure the rest out later.

That’s literally

and here we are. So I’m coming into these spaces and I these, these new things that I’m doing are fulfilling me in ways that I have never been fulfilled like when you are doing something that you’re passionate about that your body and your soul feel called to, in an area that you enjoy, it fulfills you in a way that nothing else can. Yeah. And so my work has been saving up Because it’s been reminding me that this pandemic is temporary, that my situation, being home with my kids is temporary, it will end changes coming. And then I can fully participate in these little blurbs of, you know, my passion projects, if you want to call them that. They give me life.

Yeah. Yeah, I think that that’s a huge insight because we forget how many things are legitimate coping mechanisms in our lives, even work whenever we have the freedom to for work to be something that that gives us life. It can be a coping mechanism in a time of immense stress. Like now, you know, yeah, so it’s it’s like it’s more than it is a way to make money. We can’t count that out, but it’s more than a way to make money. It’s it’s a way to cope, you know, and it’s it’s an outlet for energy. And I think that’s really beautiful. And then I also want to say I, over the past, probably six months have been doing some reading and trying to understand the history of. Okay, big alcohol, like we talked about Big Pharma, but we don’t talk about big alcohol. Yeah, you know, like on a government level and policy and stuff. And then also the way that the discourse publicly around addiction is actually doesn’t really make much sense. And it only benefits big alcohol, all that to say, I read a book called quit like a woman, it’s about sobriety, but it’s not like trying to get you to be sober. It’s like explaining kind of some of that systemic stuff to you. And then talking about how it relates to, you know, the way that we show up in the world and it’s really really good. Um, it’s by a woman named Holly Whitaker and definitely check it out. But all that to say, I have been really really thinking a lot about alcohol and thinking a lot like if you look at the numbers for Sales of alcohol they’ve shot up since the pandemic started. And I think, though, that where I am right now is that regardless of to a certain extent, regardless of what your individual coping mechanism is, it can be an intentional legitimate coping mechanism. I think the problem is when it’s your only coping mechanism, you know what I’m saying? Like, and I actually had a professor of Social Work Professor professor who said that to me, and not just me with the whole class, she said that that was her take on it, and she has worked in addiction for a really long time. And I was like, wow, that really helps put it into perspective for me, because, being for me, for me being realistic around alcohol doesn’t feel like the way that I need to live in order to be living intentionally being remaining in my body, you know, and I keep all of that info viewed Knowing that like, I come from a long line of alcoholism in my family, you know, and so, all that to say, I really liked what, at this time, I could change my mind. But I really like what my professor said. She said, I think that it’s okay to have alcohol as a coping mechanism as long as it’s not your only coping mechanism.

And I was like, that is good. That’s, you know, not that that gives us like a free pass, right? strike that thing. But it’s, it’s very true because I also have addiction in all of my families. And I and I think that’s why I am so self aware. So like some people would you know, when I say that I drink every night people, some people may the we all judge according to what our life experiences are. And some people experience addiction and choose to go the opposite direction, but I’m just because addiction runs in all of my families. I’m just self aware and have created those accountability, but I also Like what you just said is so profound because it I know I’ve done that intentionally without even knowing that concept. I’ve been telling, say, I’ve been in my brain already aware that this cannot be my only outlet because I’ve, I have personally seen the destruction that it does families. And so I’ve created kind of like these multiple lifelines. Mm hmm. You know, I’ll grab a glass of wine and I will do some art, or I’ll grab a glass of wine and go sit outside or grab a glass of wine while I’m cooking dinner for my children. Yeah, like, not to justify it, but because I want to engage. I want to engage all of my senses in what I’m doing in order to ground myself. Yeah. And for people who have trauma brain and you know, that looks like you know, sometimes it’s medication. Sometimes it’s having a glass of wine to kind of turn down the inner voices. That’s trying to manifest itself. Again, it’s not a path. It’s not a path. I don’t Yeah, I haven’t given you a path.

I think I think that for me, the the switch whenever I was reading this book by Hollywood occur, the switch came when I read, like her goal is not to convince you to be sober. Her goal is to help you create a life that you don’t need to escape from. And I was like, that is huge, you know, like this, this idea that it is the only way that you can escape from a life that is is causing you so much pain, like that gets to the heart of the issue for me And so that has almost that has framed all of my introspection around alcohol over the past. I guess I read it in December. I think so, you know, most of I guess it was good timing for me to read it right. pandemic hit Because it has there have been times when I’ve been like, there have been times when I’ve thought I just really want to blur the edges of this week is one way I’ve seen it described. But is there something else I can do to cope with that? Or do I need to face it head on? And that’s harder, obviously. But, you know, if someone hasn’t built the capacity or the resilience to do that, and we’re in already, we’re collectively in us in survival mode, then it’s like, you know, I don’t know. So again, not a free pass, but we just have to treat humans like humans. understand where everybody’s coming from. So I really appreciate you sharing that. And again, bringing all of yourself to the table.

I am who I am.

Yes, yes, yes.

Yeah, so what’s saving my life right now? I have a solo retreat coming up. My husband and I have Oh, this is really ugly. For me we have given each other like two days each to go stay in an Airbnb and it’s for my week off between my semesters and he’s actually taking a couple of days off to for his and he is literally so he’s a film blogger and movie podcaster and so he’s gonna literally watch movies for like 36 hours straight I don’t know if he’s even going to sleep to be honest which is my favorite thing to do whenever I’m you know, in a hotel situation and so he is super excited about that and then I am going to this little it’s actually a little Retreat Center for spiritual retreats and there are no like rules around it, you know, they do like programming and stuff, but I’m just yeah renting the cottage which was cheaper than any other airbnbs around here and so I am stoked about

jealous right now

as much as I’m trying to live in the moment. The property Have that solo retreat at the end of this week is what is saving my life right now I’m living in the future because I honestly cannot fathom what it’s going to be like to go there and be alone.

I, I would I would be so just listening to you talk about it. I’m like,

tantalizing? I know, I know.

Yeah, I’m just I’m so super jealous. Like, I might actually suggest that to my husband, you should. He needs it just as much as I do. But he so he’s, he is an anagram one and he has to have a schedule. He loves his schedule. He loves to be productive. Like he’s got a it’s almost three ish where he has to have a list every day and to accomplish that list. He is, you know, the yearning to feel good for him comes out in being productive. And so he has such a hard time allowing himself to vacation. Hmm. And my adopted father was also he’s also an immigrant one. And we had the same problem with him where he we’d go on vacation, we’d like he’d we’re getting up at six tomorrow, and we’re going to go to the NASA museum and we’d be like, Bruce,

Bruce, Bruce, calm down.

Bruce. Yeah, all of us all because all of us, you know, we were teenagers, and you know, my mom likes to sleep into so you’d be like, 6am and he’d be in the kitchen of wherever we were staying. And we would all collectively yell out, we’re all sleeping in.

Do not even think about waking us up at six.

Yeah, you may go find a mom and pop diner and converse with the old man.

But let us be.

Yeah, please sit there. drink your coffee with the old men. So we will go

to NASA at 11

Yeah, well, I bet your husband would love it then he might. My husband is an enneagram nine and so he is good at relaxing. And I say That, uh, like in full acknowledgement that that is like something we all need to learn from, you know, like, I’m not using the word lazy here, I’m like, we honestly need to learn from enneagram nines. So he’s just gonna rest to his heart’s content. And I’m thrilled for him. And I am an enneagram eight. And so my penchant is toward, at least right now. It’s been it has been difficult to rest, because justice is what compels me and right now I feel like left and right. All I see is injustice. And when I say compels me, makes me feel like I should be working, you know. And so, I really have been trying to learn from that instead of defaulting to How dare you like How dare you rest How dare you take just take that little 4pm catnap that you take every single day. How dare you, you know, I’m trying to be like What what’s my equivalent of a 4pm? cat nap? You know, what is it? Let me do that, because I think we all need it. So, anyway, my solo retreat, I don’t know what it’s gonna look like he has his planned out to the like movie by movie. He knows what takeout he’s ordering, you know? And we don’t live, we don’t live in some, just a huge destination city like we’re in Central Arkansas. So the airbnbs are pretty cheap, and they’re good little spots. You know, it’s definitely cheaper than a good hotel or even a not good hotel. So we were like, hey, and honestly, we, we looked at how we haven’t gone on a date, and we still can’t because our kids, we there’s no one we trust to care for our kids. And so, we’ve been, we were like, okay, let’s put, you know the money that we haven’t been taking ourselves on a date toward these little mini retreats and It’s a wash and honestly, it’s it’s working out and I’m really thrilled and I feel really fortunate.

Yeah, you haven’t even done it already successfully. I the idea of anticipating Yeah, this is gonna be proposed when my husband

you should you should because I mean, I think

that it’s it’s a good alternative to like honestly if I think about what it would be like for me and him in terms of risk with COVID and stuff, which were really again my kids have medical needs so we’re not even taking chances but to go to a restaurant on a Friday night indoors, are you kidding me? Like No, we’re not doing that. But this is a place where like right now Airbnb has really really high standards for the cleaning and everything and they ask all these questions and if you if you ask ahead of time, the Airbnb host will tell you whether or not like you can plan around whether or not someone has been there the night before, so that it’s like there’s been a 24 hours since another human has even been in this room, like it’s like, I just feel really safe doing it and there’s not much that I feel safe doing. So it’s, um, I’m really excited and the prospect of this weekend is what’s saving my life right now.

So excited for you.

Thanks. Thanks. Thanks. I’ll try to like give you some vicarious like, Markopolos or something so that you

know, I don’t want you to leave me alone. But you’re right. I should turn my phone off. I reject your offer Marco Polo. And I raised you just don’t talk.

I’ll take pictures and I’ll share them on Monday.

There you go. I don’t share real time. No,

no, no, no, you’re right. Soy

I would, if I have that opportunity. I would literally just like sit there and stare into space. Honestly,

seriously, it seemed so good. I don’t know where this place is. I know it’s a little cottage type thing. So I need to find out if there’s a your kitchen. If it’s too far away for me to go pick up. I don’t you know, I need to figure out what I’m going to eat but we’ll figure it out if I’m maybe it’s a fast maybe I’m fasting for two days. Either way, I’ll be alone.

Oh no, I wouldn’t pass because in my house if I eat anything my kids want it. Like, I can’t have anything to myself.

Yeah, so you’re gonna be eating no matter what if you get if you get out.

I will order all of the Chinese takeout. That’s a good idea. Yeah. That’s what I will eat. I will eat myself sick. Which is also a trauma coping skill, by the way. Yeah. Yeah.

That’s another episode. That’s another episode. Well, thanks for all your self disclosure, Andie. You too, Allison? Yeah, yeah, we’ll do this again so that everybody can get to know the people behind the trauma research. Well, we’re not behind the research, but we present the research. We regurgitate it for you,

Mama bird

That’s our show for today. If you enjoyed the show, please take a moment to rate and review it on your podcast platform. Yes, please do this helps

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Transcribed by https://otter.ai