To Deal With Trauma, You Have To Let Yourself Feel

To Deal With Trauma, You Have To Let Yourself Feel

I was 15 years old and I didn’t know what to do with all the feelings that I was experiencing.

Traumatic events are not just sad things that happen in life that are eventually forgotten in time. These events are painfully heavy. They are burned into your memories and are equally as vivid in recollection as it was the first time you experienced it. The pain, the sadness, the hurt that you felt when the traumatic event hit your life still stings, even if it has been years since it occurred, because when you feel that level of emotion, your heart remembers it forever.

So how does one cope with trauma? How do you deal with the heaviness you are experiencing? To be honest, there is no right answer. Everyone deals with trauma in their own way and because of that, I can only share how I have dealt with trauma in my life. To protect those involved, I will not describe the traumatic event. However, I will describe how I felt.

I was 15 years old and I didn’t know what to do with all the feelings that I was experiencing. So, I shut it all down. I didn’t cry. I didn’t get angry. I didn’t even talk about it. I pretended like nothing was wrong and I focused all my attention in school and my extracurriculars. Anytime anyone would try to bring it up or express how they felt, I would leave the room. I had convinced myself that I wasn’t bothered by the situation so much so that I would get irritated if people tried talking to me about it.

You may be asking how I managed to block what happened to my family out of my head? As I mentioned, everyone copes with trauma differently. I believe that since I was so young, not thinking about the complexity of what happened to my family helped me deal with the situation. However, this method was not effective for long.

After about a year, my block began to weaken. I started getting emotional over things completely unrelated to my family and I started to think about the event more and more. It started to consume what I thought about and I became extremely distracted. Eventually, I couldn’t ignore what I was feeling anymore and I had a breakdown. It felt like the tears that were coming out were slowly easing my pain that I had held on to for so long.

If there is one thing I have learned from my experience is that by avoiding dealing with my family’s problems, I was simply pushing off the inevitable. This caused my later coping to be even more painful and heavy. Had I allowed myself to experience the emotions I was feeling at the time of the event, I probably would have prevented my later suffering. And although I cannot be too hard on myself since we cannot always control how we will react when trauma occurs, it is one thing that I regret looking back on that experience.

If you are reading this and have also been through a traumatic situation, I speak directly to you. However you choose to deal with what has happened, as long as it is healthy and not hurting anyone including yourself, is a valid way to cope. Take your time and process what has happened the best way you can. It will be difficult and you will feel confused and conflicted, but know you will get through it. Do not feel ashamed to seek out the comfort of family, close friends and/or professional help. It does not make you weak; in fact, the simple recognition that you need help truly defines what strength is.

Cover Image Credit: Health Comu

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30 Things I'd Rather Be Than 'Pretty'

Because "pretty" is so overrated.

Nowadays, we put so much emphasis on our looks. We focus so much on the outside that we forget to really focus on what matters. I was inspired by a list that I found online of "Things I Would Rather Be Called Instead Of Pretty," so I made my own version. Here is a list of things that I would rather be than "pretty."

1. Captivating

I want one glance at me to completely steal your breath away.

2. Magnetic

I want people to feel drawn to me. I want something to be different about me that people recognize at first glance.

3. Raw

I want to be real. Vulnerable. Completely, genuinely myself.

4. Intoxicating

..and I want you addicted.

5. Humble

I want to recognize my abilities, but not be boastful or proud.

6. Exemplary

I want to stand out.

7. Loyal

I want to pride myself on sticking out the storm.

8. Fascinating

I want you to be hanging on every word I say.

9. Empathetic

I want to be able to feel your pain, so that I can help you heal.

10. Vivacious

I want to be the life of the party.

11. Reckless

I want to be crazy. Thrilling. Unpredictable. I want to keep you guessing, keep your heart pounding, and your blood rushing.

12. Philanthropic

I want to give.

13. Philosophical

I want to ask the tough questions that get you thinking about the purpose of our beating hearts.

14. Loving

When my name is spoken, I want my tenderness to come to mind.

15. Quaintrelle

I want my passion to ooze out of me.

16. Belesprit

I want to be quick. Witty. Always on my toes.

17. Conscientious

I want to always be thinking of others.

18. Passionate

...and I want people to know what my passions are.

19. Alluring

I want to be a woman who draws people in.

20. Kind

Simply put, I want to be pleasant and kind.

21. Selcouth

Even if you've known me your whole life, I want strange, yet marvelous. Rare and wondrous.

22. Pierian

From the way I move to the way I speak, I want to be poetic.

23. Esoteric

Do not mistake this. I do not want to be misunderstood. But rather I'd like to keep my circle small and close. I don't want to be an average, everyday person.

24. Authentic

I don't want anyone to ever question whether I am being genuine or telling the truth.

25. Novaturient

..about my own life. I never want to settle for good enough. Instead I always want to seek to make a positive change.

26. Observant

I want to take all of life in.

27. Peart

I want to be honestly in good spirits at all times.

28. Romantic

Sure, I want to be a little old school in this sense.

29. Elysian

I want to give you the same feeling that you get in paradise.

30. Curious

And I never want to stop searching for answers.
Cover Image Credit: Favim

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My Love-Hate Relationship with Starbucks

This is my oh so wonderful experience at Starbucks during the week of midterms.


When I usually go to Starbucks, I typically get the same type of drinks: carmel macchiato, chai tea latte, chestnut praline chai tea latte (which sadly is only a holiday drink), or a shaken black tea lemonade with light ice. However, sometimes a person just gets bored drinking the same three drinks over and over, so I thought, "Hey! lets get out of our comfort zone here pal and try something new." So I did I walked my tired stressed out self to Starbucks 10 minutes before my next class and ordered a tall cinnamon shortbread latte, I mean the description and other peoples comments about it made it sound super good.

As I was waiting for my drink I noticed that one of the baristas was having some issues with some type of syrup, but I thought that they would refill it and then add what they need, and that one probably wasn't even mine. When they did that, I saw them get a new jug of syrup and I went back onto my phone and to try and plan how I was going to get through this midterms week.

Quick info about midterms: everyone is dead, and everyone is stressed. Us college students literally live off of caffeine during midterms week. If you're lucky like me you are at school from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m., so the caffeine is really needed.

Now soon after I saw the new jug come, my name was called. I grabbed my drink and walked like the walking zombie I was to my next class. I went in for my first drink I was so excited to have this sweet taste of vanilla, cinnamon and coffee...but what I got was the opposite. It literally tasted like a very burnt somewhat coffee and cinnamon edible without the marijuana affects, or for the non-edible people, a very bad tasting cookie that was missing all the sugar. I was not a happy camper one bit, but I was going to drink it anyway because I payed $4 for this coffee. I struggled drinking this during my writing class because it tasted terrible, but then out of no where I got this hit of sweet — I was drinking the sweet vanilla and the sweet cinnamon part of my drink minus the majority of the coffee since I was 3/4 done with the drink. I was seriously crying on the inside because I didn't get to enjoy this drink the way I needed.

Then the realization hit me: 1. They probably didn't add in the missing parts of the syrup once it got refilled since they suddenly got busy. 2. They did not stir that drink one bit because all the syrup was literally at the bottom of the cup. If they did these, then the problem wouldn't have happened.

This is not the first time this has happened to me having all the syrup at the bottom of the cup at a Starbucks. Its not like I am able to swish it around myself because it is full to the top and I don't want hot coffee poured or splashed on my hand. Also, most people are on-the-go while they are drinking their coffee or doing other things. I have only had this issue at Starbucks and never at any other place have I had this issue like Anthem Coffee.

So can Starbucks just agree to always mix their drinks? So that the zombie college kids during midterms have good coffee to keep them alive?

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