I want my story to be the breakthrough you need to realize that you are greater than your experiences and worthy of infinite love.
I have finally gathered the strength and strive to share the real inspiration behind the name “Heal with Sheila”.
I recently shared a post on my childhood trauma and how I healed my inner child. Now I’m going a step further into how my childhood trauma affected me growing up especially in the “love” department. I feel that sharing this part of my life will resonate with and liberate a lot of women experiencing a repeated cycle of toxic relationships. I want my story to be the breakthrough you need to realize that you are greater than your experiences and worthy of infinite love.
As most of you already know, my parents divorced when I was pretty young, and as girls growing up (just as boys), we need a father figure too. So what happens when that paternal emptiness manifests? We go out into the world “unconsciously” seeking a father figure in the relationships we find ourselves in. Do any of these characteristics ring a bell?
- A family man (one who looks like he won’t abandon his family or conceived embryo because his folks looked happy).
- A man with potential (one who will provide for the family and enable financial comforts, but isn’t quite there yet, but you love the idea of the possibility).
- A “Godly” man (one who fears the Lord and won’t leave you at the altar because God is watching).
- An affectionate man (one who will love you in public and deprive you of your desires behind closed doors)
- A kind man (one who will shower you with kindness and attention until he pins you down and turns into the monster you created).
This list goes on and I dare you to write your own list and prove me wrong. Well for the girls who grew up in loving homes, with present dads, it’s as expected that you’ll find a man as good as your father and live happily ever after. So let’s not paint all dads as bad men, but for the sake of my story, I will share according to my personal journey and those I encountered.
Looking back and connecting the dots I realized that I was attracted to men who fit the description of the father I never had. If a man had it all together, I had to keep it glued together. If a man needed fixing emotionally and mentally, I gave all my energy to mend his wounds and depleted myself in the process. I was creating an elusion of a man I never knew and was ready to love with my all and lose the true essence of my femininity. It was a tug-of-war between what I deserved and what I tolerated. I learnt all these things after marriage, I married at 23, had my daughter at 26 and my awakening happened at 29 after my aunts passing.
Now here is the thing, I knew something wasn’t right, but I was living my life blindly, lost in thoughts, past experiences, traumas and motherhood (yes, motherhood can make you lose yourself if you don’t take ownership of your life). I opened up about my experiences and got schooled on emotional/mental/psychological abuse, these where terminologies I had never heard of before, and something many people aren’t aware of. As I researched further I realized that I was caught in the cobwebs of a narcissist, yet another terminology I discovered. They say “ignorance is bliss”, I totally agree to this because I found comfort in my discomfort.
So here I was, living in an emotionally abusive marriage and aware of it, in a foreign environment, no friends or family and being a mom in a toxic atmosphere. What was I to do next with all the information I gathered? Well, one thing I knew for sure was that something needed to change and fast. How did this “awakening” happen? I mentioned my aunts passing, and realized that life was too short, she wasn’t happy on the home front and she died with that emptiness. With that realization, I took charge of my life and things started to change (slowly), the flame was ready to burst through the cracks of the mental prison I had created for myself. I wasn’t out for revenge if that’s what you’re thinking, I was out to put my wellbeing above all else. That’s when my t-shirt line Liberated Junkii was born and I used my creativity as an escape, the name was pretty much self-explanatory. My love for yoga never died out and I guess that’s what kept me grounded through the madness.
Then “Heal with Sheila” was born, as I started my healing journey, I had to rediscover myself, practice self-love and came to the realization that my circumstances where a product of my continued silence. I had to liberate my thoughts, understand my emotions and realize that my partner’s actions had nothing to do with me. I did a lot of soul-searching and that’s when spirituality came knocking on my door and here I am today! Now I’m here to tell my side of the story because silence has enabled preconceived notions of what was over what is. And if you’re familiar with the characteristics of narcissists, you’ll understand where I’m coming from. When I said, “a narcissist can lie the dead into the living”, I wasn’t joking, they have the tongue of a serpent and an ego-filled delusion of grandeur.
As a result, my family failed to sympathize with the abuse because let’s face it, emotional abuse bears no physical scars as physical abuse. The healing process is tedious and gruesome, as words once said can not easily be erased and actions taken can’t easily be recovered either. When you’re ready to take the necessary measures, you’ll be the last woman standing and that walk will be pretty lonely. Brace yourselves for the turbulence ahead as I bring you future posts related to emotional abuse and narcissism in relationships. I’ll share effective tools that helped me through the ordeal and the coping mechanisms I have put in place.
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