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Breaking the Chains of Trauma: Embracing Creativity as a Path to Healing. I am Curiosity. I am Circumspect. I am Creative.

Good morning! And Welcome to my Blog, Nomadic Gemini. Where we hold space for transforming trauma, igniting your purpose, and rewriting your story, one episode at a time.

This is part 3 of a 26 part series: Unraveling the Past from A-Z: Exploring the Layers of Trauma and Uncovering a Path Towards Healing.

This series explores the lingering effects of trauma from childhood. 

We examine the remnants of those haunting memories and how patterns and cycles of generational trauma impact our thoughts, emotions, and self-perception as an adult. 

We also discuss the challenges of confronting those ghosts, unbecoming everything we were never meant to have become in the first place, and, finally, reframing narratives, embracing vulnerability, and fostering growth in rewriting our story, one chapter at a time, to heal from these deeply-rooted wounds.

Now the A-Z part, I’ve written in Poem form to show you the layers of the trauma that I’ve survived.

Today I’m working my way through the layers of the letter “C” in my own life.

And I’m using the three lines that pen my healing…

I am curious (who I was as a child).

I am circumspect (who I became as a result of my trauma).

I am creative (the product of who I’m manifesting and how I’m transforming my trauma into purpose).

Today, I’m going to discuss how embracing creativity as a path to healing can help break the chains of trauma that keep us rooted in the past.

So let’s dive in and get to work.

The Curiosity of a Child:

There is something truly remarkable about the curiosity of a child. It is an open-mindedness that has not yet been scarred by the world around them. As a child, my mind fueled my imagination and my thoughts knew no limits. I was not yet controlled by what I was supposed to do or think or say, free to do whatever I wanted as I explored and not what everyone else expected of me.

As a child, I was insatiably curious. I asked endless questions, sought out new adventures, and approached the world with an open, inquisitive mind.

I remember wanting to be outside, in nature, under the stars, adventuring in the woods. 

Playing with my Barbie and Ken dolls as they allied with my brother’s Gi Joe figures and we played for hours and hours using nothing but our imagination to keep us company on long, hot summer days.

I was curious about learning to play the piano and developing my talent of singing in concert choir as I got older.

I remained curious about the world and how it worked, and always wanted to be out going for drives in the country, or in the desert when we lived in Phoenix.

I wanted to take road trips and travel and had this need to know about other people and their cultures even from a young age.

I learned about wildlife and nature and fell in love with every animal under the sun and wanted to bring them home, rescue them, and start a sanctuary to help them all.

And I’ll tell you a little secret - that desire never really went away. And if I ever win the lottery, it will be one of the first few things I do for real!

Even the long walks home from school were an adventure as we created make-believe stories and made ourselves into characters that were brave and stronger and much more interesting than we actually were, I’m sure.

Time seemed to slow in those days as we walked and talked and made memories on the way home, collecting buckeyes and interesting shaped leaves and thwarting the evil plans of anyone that dared cross our path and get in the way.

Not really. We would never actually hurt anyone. But we had a club. You know the one. Blood sisters for life. 

Where no one could touch us, because we had each other. 

Because in our minds we were unstoppable.

Because we were bonded for life by the secrets we kept and the stories we told.

Oh, if things were only that way still today.

And I witnessed it all with a sense of wonder and a willingness to explore the unknown. 

There were no boundaries to my creativity, and every day was an opportunity to learn something new. 

I asked endless questions and sought answers with relentless determination. 

And funny enough, I talked so much that I was even bribed once to sit at the kitchen table during dinner and be quiet for 5 minutes. 

That’s it. 

Just 5 minutes to please stop asking so many questions and let us eat our dinner in peace. 

They said they’d even give me 5 bucks if I could do it.

But I just couldn’t make it. Within a couple of minutes of sitting in my chair like I had ants in my pants, I broke my silence and continued rambling on about God knows what. 

The point is, back then, NOTHING, not even the promise of money could silence my curiosity. 

Not then. Probably not even now.

But that insatiable curiosity of my childhood? I believe that it led me to embrace creativity as a path to my own healing as an adult.

In those early years, I was always eager to delve into the next adventure or discover something new. I was not content to follow the status quo, and I challenged the limitations that others placed on me. 

As I look back on those formative years, I am inspired by the boundless curiosity that defined my childhood.

It was a time when I was free to explore, to question, and to imagine without inhibition.

That curiosity laid the foundation for my creative spirit, and it continues to drive me as I embrace the journey of healing and self-discovery.

The Circumspection of Trauma

I was once open minded, free to explore the possibilities that lie before me, not caring what came next. 

But, eventually, due to trauma, I became cautious, guarded, limited in thinking, and my thoughts and words were marked by circumspection instead. And then, finally, I shut down, and I withdrew.

From the world, from others, but sadly, from myself.

I stopped being curious because if you look too hard for the good, there is always the bad waiting around the next corner, eager to steal your joy and kill your dreams.

At least that’s what my trauma brain told me and for a long time, that’s really what I believed.

I stopped believing the world was a magical place and felt like I didn’t belong anywhere at time. And then, I also stopped doing the things that I once loved to create.

Except… that not too long after my parents divorced and before we moved across the country, I started taking piano lessons. I think I was still maybe just 6, maybe 7.

But from the moment my fingers touched those ivory keys, my fears, my worries, my not feeling like I belonged was released.

While I shut down emotions I was much too scared to express, for fear of hurting others, for fear of them not loving me if I did, and ultimately, because I was told that we don’t need to talk about those things. 

Don’t do as I do, do as you should.

So I locked it all up tight and hid myself away. And I did it for as long as I could.

Now here is the caveat to all of this circumspection and withdrawal…

That withdrawal, that internalizing, that hiding myself away from the rest of the world?

It led me to pour myself into my music more than I had ever done before.

I began to spend hours playing the piano in the basement of our house.

Writing music and never sharing it, just so I could get the words out that I had never been allowed to say.

Circumspect to Creative

So how did I get from locking myself away in the basement playing my heart out on the piano to becoming an open-minded woman in her mid fifties who lives with eyes wide open and has it all figured out now?

Well, I didn’t, exactly. 

I still internalize literally everything!

There is still mistrust.

Fear of abandonment.

And a cautious approach at life itself that I deal with every single day, even at my age.

But that is what I am here with you, on this blog and in my podcast, exposing my vulnerability as I unravel the layers of my own trauma, and yours, to uncover a path to healing as we go.

What I can tell you is that I’m learning. And I’m growing. Every single day that I’m alive.

I’m learning that I can still embrace that curiosity I once had and take baby steps, or giant leaps, forward, while still remaining a little cautious until I know that I am in fact safe and can proceed.

And man, there has been a powerful shift that resonates with me lately. Within the last week or two in fact.

I read a quote the other day that said it better than I ever could - I believe it was from the Center for Spiritual Living out of Colorado Springs.

It said “Pain Pushes Until Vision Pulls.”

Think about that for a moment… Pain Pushes… Until Vision Pulls.

That pain is what has been pushing me for years, decades really, but it wasn’t in the direction I thought. 

It hasn’t been pushing me to suffer or stay lost in the trauma and pain of the past, it has been guiding me towards my purpose. 

Towards the vision I see for a future where I’m healed and whole and able to pursue my own purpose and calling to help others with their trauma too.

And the catalyst to that change in thinking and the shift in always being guarded, to again, wanting to explore and embrace the joy in what comes next without living in so much fear that something bad is surely waiting to happen?

It’s been, in large part, due to opening up to creativity once again and using those tools to help me heal.

And man, has that been a powerful tool to lean into.

Therapeutic Tools: Writing, Music, and Journaling

I’ve only recently had a breakthrough in this area - an epiphany if you ill - through the process of working my way towards healing.

I discovered, or maybe just re-remembered, that my childhood curiosity holds the keys to unlocking my creative potential once more. 

A New Journey Unfolds:

By embracing a curious mindset and reconnecting with the open-mindedness of my youth, I found that the scars of trauma no longer define me. 

Instead, they become the raw material through which my creativity flourishes, allowing me to express myself in ways that transcend the pain I had endured.

Writing, music, and journaling have again become my therapeutic tools, offering me a pathway to healing that is deeply rooted in the power of my own creativity. 

As I delve into these creative pursuits, I discover a newfound sense of purpose and a profound ability to use my words to heal not only myself, but others as well.

It is through the rekindling of my childhood curiosity that I am slowly finding the courage to confront my wounds and transform them into sources of strength. 

My journey has taught me that the playful, unyielding spirit of curiosity has the power to break the chains of trauma, allowing us all to embrace our creativity as a path to healing. 

Within the last several years since our daughter moved across the country and had two babies, we’ve ventured over 3000 miles a couple of times to see them and spend time with them.

Now remember I said when I was young, I loved roadtrips and traveling and getting to go on adventures.

As an adult planning these trips, I realized that when I was a child, I literally had no fear. I just got in the car and followed my parents wherever they took us and enjoyed every single second along the way.

Now, in the planning stages as the one who handles all of that, my anxiety has never been higher.

I stress… I stress a LOT…

This is what a few minutes of dialogue sound like inside that craziness!

How are we going to pay for it all? Getting the car in to make sure it doesn’t break down on the road as we drive. And if it does, who would we call? What would we do? What if our debit or credit cards get hacked and we have no way to pay for a way to get home? What happens if we get in an accident and never make it to our destination? Will it storm? Will it be too hot and unbearable to do anything while we’re there? Will it snow if we go when it’s colder and risk driving in treacherous weather conditions? What if we both go and something happens and then one of us has to come home alone?

Seriously… It gets to be a LOT living inside my anxiety-ridden brain!

But you know what? I stress about all of that ahead of when we leave.

And once we are out on the road and about 3-4 hours away from home, with each mile that passes, I swear I can feel the stress and anxiety and worry slip away.

Once I’m out there and my mind remembers the feelings of when I was child, that same curiosity and daydreaming takes hold and I slip into another person, my old self perhaps, and I melt.

Before long, I’m craving to plan another adventure, and then another. And I start to feel as if nothing could stop me. And my fear is replaced by curiosity and wonder and awe once again.

For me, battling that fear and anxiety is a constant battle. But I make progress every time I push it away and come out on top.

It's a journey that continues to unfold, as I strive to remain open to the endless possibilities that curiosity and creativity offer, free from the constraints of my past.

It took time and effort to recognize how the chains of trauma had confined me, but once I did, I’ve spent the past few years seeking out ways to break free for good. 

Through writing, music, and journaling, I found therapeutic tools that helped me navigate the depths of my emotions and ignite a sense of purpose within me.

I discovered that in expressing my thoughts and feelings, I not only healed myself but also reached out to others who carried their own scars. I realized that my words had the power to heal, to uplift, and to set others free from the shackles of their own trauma.

So, as I embrace creativity as a path to healing, I am desperately trying to let go of the circumspection that had held me back and allow my words and music to flow freely. 

I find that in embracing my creativity, I can tap into the curiosity of my younger self once more, and in doing so, I found a sense of freedom I had thought was lost forever.

Okay, now I’m going to get personal for a moment and just briefly touch on a topic that affects my own life in big big ways.

Guys, you can put on headphones or tune this part out, or maybe, just maybe listen closely because you might be able to help your own wife or sibling or mom or girlfriend as she struggles with this one day.

I’m talking about the big M word now.

Menopause, for any of you that didn’t know, can be a real bitch sometimes.

I’ve struggled the past couple of years through the symptoms and side effects, often remaining quiet and trying to figure things out on my own.

I’ve lost myself and come to grips with the fact that I will never be the same again now.

But what I didn’t see coming is how leaning into writing would help heal me too.

Who knew that writing my current cozy murder mystery series, Menopause and Muffins Tops, would help me express some of the questions and doubts and fears in a creative way would also allow me to in a strange way, heal, stop living in denial, and embrace this season of my life in a whole new light.

Through the process of healing and embracing that creativity, I've come to understand that my cautiousness and guarded nature were not permanent attributes; they were merely responses to my trauma experiences. 

And as I continue on this journey, I am not only breaking free from the chains of trauma but also rekindling the spirit of curiosity and open-mindedness and I have never felt so free to explore.

Somewhere along the way somewhere, I hope that I’ll run across someone again. 

I hope to find her and take her by the hand and walk this new journey as I redefine the only woman whose voice should have ever mattered the most - and that person, the one I desperately want to learn to find, discover again, and redefine?

It’s me!

Where Courage and Creativity Abound:

So, with each word I write and each note I play, I am not only healing myself but also helping others to find their own paths to freedom.

Creativity has become my guiding light, leading me out of the darkness of trauma and into a world of limitless possibilities.

I will forever be grateful for the curiosity of my youth, and I carry its influence with me as I navigate the path to healing. It is a reminder of the limitless potential that exists within each of us, and it serves as a powerful catalyst for embracing creativity as a means of transcending trauma and embracing a brighter, more vibrant future.

In the aftermath of trauma, I felt the edges of my world closing in, suffocating me with fear, self-doubt, and a sense of unworthiness.

It was as if the very essence of who I was had been erased, leaving behind a cautious, guarded version of myself.

I found myself limited in thinking, hesitant to explore, and my thoughts and words were marked by circumspection instead of the uninhibited freedom I once knew.

The scars of trauma cut deep, leaving me feeling unloved, alone, anxious, and depressed. I withdrew into myself, building walls to shield me from further hurt, but those walls also kept out the possibilities of new experiences and the joys of creativity.

Trauma erased my freedom to explore without being judged or hurt, and I was left with the heavy burden of navigating a world marked by caution and suspicion.

But as I reflect on my journey, I have come to understand that the circumspection that took hold of my thoughts and words was a natural defense mechanism.

It was a way to protect myself from the pain and uncertainty that the trauma brought into my life.

While it may have limited my ability to express freely, it also served as a shield, allowing me to heal and rebuild in my own time and on my own terms.

As I embrace creativity as a path to healing, I have found that curiosity and circumspection can coexist.

I am learning to be curious about the world around me while also being circumspect about who I let in. 

Creativity, especially as an author and as a musician, has become a safe space where I can explore my thoughts and feelings without fear of judgment or harm.

It has given me the freedom to express and process my emotions, allowing me to gradually loosen the grip of caution and guardedness that trauma instilled in me.

So, I invite you to join me on this journey of breaking the chains of trauma. 

Let's embrace creativity as a tool for healing, allowing our curiosity to flourish while acknowledging the scars that shaped us. 

Together, we can carve out a path to freedom and self-discovery, reclaiming our voices and rewriting our stories where courage and creativity abound.

I hope you'll continue to join me for this brand-new series about Unraveling the Past from A-Z: Exploring the Layers of Trauma and Uncovering a Path Towards Healing.

I hope this post has motivated you as much as it has me to want to unravel those layers so that eventually we can learn to thrive, not just to merely survive as we’ve done in the past.

Most of all, hope, I hope you know that you are loved, you are worthy, and you are enough, no matter where you are in your healing journey.

Together, we can, and will, heal as we learn to let the past go and welcome in this next chapter, turning pages of transformation, healing, and change.

I can't wait to see where this new road takes us as we embrace this new year and make it into everything we need it to be.

Thanks for being here. And thanks for making a difference in my life.

I wouldn't be where I am today without you.

Hang in there, and know that you are loved from here to the universe and back.

Until next time, I am unconditionally yours,

All my love,

~ Sadie


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