I bolted upright in the therapist's chair. She'd just asked me about why I'd stopped searching for my birth mother Pat.
A frigid wave of fear flowed through my body as a picture popped into my head...
I'd opened the door of the therapy room to find her framed in doorway.
She was rejecting me again.
The spine chilling terror suddenly somersaulted to red hot rage. I'm not going to let this fear of a second rejection ruin my life.
For some, the Primal Wound gapes like the exit wound from a dum dum - three times bigger than the entry hole. For me, this was only the second time I'd experienced it in 46 years on the planet. I'm one of the lucky ones.
The Primal Wound is a metaphor to sum up a set of feelings including loneliness, insecurity, fear, shame and a whole load of horrible others.
But it's fundamentally something that's FELT. It's not a thing. It's a feeling. A visceral, scary feeling that engulfs us or threatens to do so. It's triggered from time to time.
More often that not we turn away from painful feelings. That's not just an adoptee thing. It's a human thing. We turn away from trauma or try to numb.
In that second moment I felt it I resolved to run towards it. Apparently the US Marines take huge pride in doing the same. Whilst the rest of the army shy from gunfire, they - the elite - run towards it.
6 years later I'm still looking for the trauma. And yet I've still not found anything other than feelings (like insecurity) and thoughts (I'm not good enough).
So what have I found out? That I'm not my trauma. We are not our trauma. Our past needn't shape our future. What we focus on gets bigger, so by focussing on our trauma grows. Because studying the dark never leads to the light. The further down a rabbit hole we go, the darker it gets and the more likely we are to get stuck.
Trauma snowballs. Obsessing on the hope brings light. That helps us see better like dawn piercing the dark. Then the sun's warmth melts the trauma. The snowball shrinks. It becomes a pool of the water. It evaporates. And then there's nothing there.
Because the Primal Wound was made of feelings and thoughts. It was never a thing. It hid who I was like a fist clenching a diamond. Stabbing the hand pierces the flesh but doesn't wound the precious stone within. Diamonds can't be cut.
I felt primally wounded.
But I was always whole.
Because we are all fundamentally unwoundable.
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