Loss of self and identity

Today, I went to a Technical Editing class that I am taking and I felt excited and enthusiastic. I remembered that I love learning. It felt so good to remember who I am or who I was.
When I got home I wrote about all the things I missed. I miss:

  • having lots of friends
  • grabbing coffee, lunch, dinner
  • going out for drinks in cozy places talking, laughing, joking
  • talking about a variety of subjects with strong opinions
  • waking up excited and hopeful about the future
  • having dreams and hopes
  • dressing up and feeling good about myself
  • enjoying the nice weather and being worry free
  • being engaged in life, fully and vibrantly
  • not feel afraid all the time
  • having a genuine enthusiasm
  • my creativity
  • my intelligence and my brilliance
  • my opinions and ideas
  • being able to trust others
  • being fearless
  • not caring what others think of me
  • not dreading life
  • not worrying
  • feeling connected to others
  • feeling confident
  • feeling good in my body
  • feeling invincible like I can take on the world and make a positive impact
  • my love for the world – my intense, passionate love for the world
  • life

I searched Google for loss of self and loss of identity and it is very common for survivors of trauma especially abuse by narcissists and sociopaths. I grew up with both of these. I feel that every time I was able to create an identity for myself they would come and crush it. In addition, I would also get attracted to narcissistic friends or even narcissistic Ph.D. advisor.

I dislike the term “compulsion to repeat” but it is very true. Until I had my meltdown or breakdown I denied that my parents are abusive. Once I started remembering, the glass castle shattered and things started coming out. The only way to break the compulsion to repeat is to break the glass castle and build a new one made out of stone. Something, that can last longer and withstand throwing stones.

It’s been 3 or maybe even 4 years since my meltdown and I am still recovering. Grief keeps resurfacing. Wounds open up every day to be felt and healed. I don’t know if I’ll restore my lost identity cause I don’t know if I ever truly had an identity.

There are few things I know about myself though:

  1. I am incredibly resilient
  2. Unbelievable strong
  3. I love art, music, literature
  4. I have a deep sense of empathy
  5. I have deep love for the world
  6. I love life even broken, bruised, and selfless – I still want to live


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