Restoring ourselves by meeting our pain

At Gabor Maté this weekend a workshop on the topics of trauma, child development and addiction ran for two days.

Trauma applies to anyone suffering as a result of their past and there are two human truths that I feel are both deeply true as well as healing when realized;

The first is that when we are young, consistent physical and emotional security with our carer(s) give us the best chance to blossom.

The second is that although that ideal is less and less likely in today’s society, trauma and pain don’t ultimately rob us of our true selves; we’re still in there behind the pain. We just need to make contact with it in the right way so we can recover ourselves.

Gabor Maté’s books can be beneficial to anyone trying to understand how trauma happens and the damage it can do that we don’t recognize as a society. He also shares insight into how we can change this. All kinds of symptoms such as anxiety, depression, fatigue but also physical manifestations like ALS, MS and cancer (“including anything chronic”) have research supporting the possibility that childhood development and emotional stresses can be bigger predictors of their onset than genetics or diet. Professionals may or may not already know a lot of the information he talks about, but for me personally, it’s the amount of research and the gestalt of his presentation that has the most impact.