CORONAVIRUS: FEELING TRIGGERED??

During this pandemic, I’ve been doing virtual training sessions and nutritional counseling. While it’s far from ideal, I am still able to connect with my clients and watch them make progress and for that I feel extremely fortunate and grateful! For me, feeling connected is what’s keeping me sane.

During these connections, my clients and I have been able to talk and share—we’ve shared our fears, frustrations, and how our new “normal” way of life is wreaking havoc.

One of my clients, let’s call her Maggie, suffered with bulimia, in her early 20’s.  Now, downloadalmost 50 years later, Maggie’s eating disorder is re-surfacing. The other night, she had a binge—something she hasn’t done in a very long time. While she didn’t purge, she overloaded on sugar. The next day Maggie could barely hold her coffee cup because her hands were stiff and arthritic. (Sugar is extremely inflammatory—a topic for another blog for sure.)  She is not alone. Other clients and family members are experiencing similar things. Past traumatic events are suddenly knocking on the door wanting to come back in for a visit.

To get more clarity, I spoke with a friend of mine, who is psychologist. I wanted her professional take. She said that in our current situation, the loss of control over various aspects of our lives may bring up earlier traumas involving the same sensation of losing control. The previous trauma could be anything from an acute illness to living with an abusive parent or spouse. Previous negative coping habits, like drinking, drug use, or over eating, may re-emerge. That’s exactly what was happening to Maggie.

The silver lining to Maggie’s story is that instead of self-loathing, she responded with self-kindness. She didn’t beat herself up. Instead, she paused and realized the reality of this pandemic. We are experiencing something that happens once every 100 years. We all are suffering with some form of anxiety and many of us will be triggered from past trauma and will regress.  We have to acknowledge it for what it is, forgive ourselves, and remember that tomorrow is another day.

Often, we hear about random acts of kindness. People doing lovely things for friends, neighbors and/or family members. In this very difficult time, we also have to make sure that we have non-random but DAILY acts of kindness towards ourselves. We need as much self-nurturing as possible.

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