Dear Exhausted Survivor,

Woman sitting on a fire escape looking kind of exhausted

There’s a pain living deep inside you, and there ain’t enough room in that town for the both of ya.

So you leave.

Often.

Seldom do you return home where the hurt fills every room.

You find temporary lodging in busyness, achievement, self-medication, and turmoil.

Essentially a homeless homeowner – embarrassing to admit, even to yourself.

Compulsive doing, which is its own objective, necessarily has chronically dissatisfying and inconsequential outcomes – the only predictable one being the irrefutable need for more.

So you do more.

You feel less displaced while at work, the gym, a bar – settings of ostensible belonging – making meaningless conversations, superficial friends, and jokes you know aren’t funny. A sort of whistling in the dark or twiddling of thumbs on the scale of your life.

But the perennial fear of going home makes you the last to leave every party.

It demands distraction.

So you distract.

And because you would need to not be dissociated in order to recognize your dissociation, you’re rarely in a position to investigate why you evade reality in the first place. Understandably so, when the very act of identifying your flight response begs the unavoidable question…

What are you running from?

A question whose answer is perhaps too heavy for one person to shoulder.

Who amongst us is willing to knock on the door of a house we once fled to survive the actual fucking monster that invaded our only safe place?

Please, let the arduous journey of returning to yourself begin with empathy for the part of you who suffered, gratitude for the one who escaped, compassion for the part who still fears, and patience for the one who yearns for rest.

When you learn to love them all unconditionally, you may be surprised to one day awaken in your own home… 

And realize it’s nothing like how you remember it.


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Wow. Please, keep writing, Adam.

Wow. Please, keep writing, Adam.

Wow. Please, keep writing, Adam.

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Thank you kindly.

Thank you kindly.

Thank you kindly.

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Published by Adam

Mentor, coach, speaker and educator for over 12 years. I have recovered from and triumphed over many obstacles and afflictions. It brings me tremendous joy to help others overcome similar circumstances so they can live their best lives.

2 thoughts on “Dear Exhausted Survivor,

  1. Thank You Adam. I’m in IFS therapy and my affirmation this month will be credited to you:

    Please, let the arduous journey of returning to yourself begin with empathy for the part of you who suffered, gratitude for the one who escaped, compassion for the part who still fears, and patience for the one who yearns for rest.

    Thank You!
    Nancy

    1. Yes! I Love IFS! That makes my heart smile to hear. Thank you for sharing that, Nancy. And godspeed on your journey of self-discovery ❤️.

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