“Waking” is a poem about healing. It is about waking from the slumber of denial and learning to honor the pain, rage, and grief in our lives.
It is specifically about trauma healing; the life long process of healing trauma held in the body. It is about the exhaustion that leads the body into depression, like the feeling of waking up tired or sleeping but never really resting.
It is about the desperation and the hopelessness in struggling to imagine an end to the tears brought on by the pain, rage and grief, trying to come up for air but feeling like your drowning.
It is also about the relief of breathing into those newly accessed parts of the body, essential to healing, learning to become aware of and include the pain, rage and grief, so alive in the body.
And it is about freeing, for the first time, the truths we spent so much energy denying, embracing a more whole, more full, more inclusive self-identity.
“Waking” could also mean, “blossoming,” like the calendula flowers I chose to paint to accompany this poem, set against the background of dawn breaking.
My own process of healing has included learning to love flowers. Calendula flowers were interesting to me at first because of their medicinal properties, but after planting them, I learned to also love their beauty. Now each morning, I take pleasure in the orange, yellow and gold hues in calendula petals. Each time I open my heart to taking pleasure in their beauty, I feel myself softening, opening, and healing.
My intention is that this poem can touch the pain, rage and grief in your own life and that our journeys towards healing, our experiences of waking, can interconnect and grow resilience within each of us.