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Picture a laptop screen.
I bet yours is neat and orderly.
My desktop is full of folders and files all over the place. No specific order. Everything I’ve started is there—many are unfinished.
My web browser has a lot of open tabs, and I rarely shut down the computer because I’m too afraid I’ll lose a tab and forget to finish that thought. Adding bookmarks is ineffective because I forget they’re there. So the computer stays on indefinitely until it crashes and has to be forced to reopen.
Just like I had to be restarted. I got restarted upon entering therapy and was deeply validated. I was rebooted when the person causing me the most stress was no longer living at home. I was rebooted for a third time when I entered rehab to regain control over my bulimia.
I believe my numerous breakdowns over the years were like the computer crashing due to overuse. I tend to overwhelm all of my computers because I don’t care for them as they deserve. Until therapy, I thought self-care was selfish. Even some of those I loved said so.
My husband’s laptop has no open tabs. He shuts down his computer every day. He rests at night with no problems, and he manages everything incredibly well. He is the epitome of organization. He is efficient. And at the end of the day, his checklist is complete, and he feels productive.
Yet, for me, sometimes, the smallest thing could feel like a monumental task for me to complete.
Obviously, it isn’t a big deal in neurotypical thinking. But for someone living with C-PTSD, every day is a battle to “be normal like everyone else.” I am acutely aware of how others function and how I don’t measure up. That’s a lot of shame to live with. That is a lot of noise. And I have listened to the noise for so long that chaos and negative responses feel normal, and I get nervous in the quiet. And I don’t know what to do.
Noise is what causes me to ignore God’s voice.
He isn’t far away; I just have too much static running between my ears. I had figured out how to lose the noise in rehab because I was away from an unhealthy environment and was able to find glimpses of my old self. Discovering that you aren’t lost forever is empowering. It took me 18 years, but I am back on the right path, distancing myself from toxic noise.
Noise hurts my healing.
Noise makes me switch back to survival mode. In survival mode, I don’t have enough bandwidth for fun, love, and compassion. Especially not for myself.
Instead, I’m just getting through the day trying so hard to not traumatize my children. I need to be stabilized before starting my day. I need encouragement for the days the noise is overwhelming my senses. In order for me to make it, I need to rely on therapy and close friendships. Without those strongholds in place, I won’t be able to recognize the noise when it begins to overtake me.
Noise is insidious and crafty.
It’ll come out of nowhere with a charming smile and charismatic appeal packed in shiny wrapping paper.
Noise rewrites your reality and makes you doubt your own thoughts.
And when I succumb to the noise, I need to be reminded that my instincts are not wrong, that my ideas are not weird, that my feelings are okay and acceptable. I need to be reminded of my truth.
My love language is what I missed as a child. I know what not to do to my kids—but the noise deafens my abilities with them.
For true healing to last, the noise has to be completely gone. Then I am free to choose whether to enter someone else’s drama and keep a clear head, or to know I can choose to leave it alone by recognizing when it is too much for me.
I am a teacher and author. I am goofily passionate about developing curriculum and creating tools for the classroom. My projects are deep and thoughtful, and I cover all of the necessary details so that I create products that bring magic to a classroom. Everything is fine-tuned to include all learning styles, so no child is left out. And taking the time to reach the core of everything promises a lengthy process. I attempt to connect my heart to the students who will benefit from my creations.
I think many of us are deep thinkers who prefer heart connections. When we allow noise to stay in our daily lives, we eventually lose sight of who we are. We survive instead of thrive. We trade long-term vision for short-term relief.
Are you barely surviving each day?
Maybe there is too much noise in your life that needs to be silenced.