The Heart Knows What It Needs


There are moments in this life when we feel desperate and all alone. We feel that we are pulled into a vortex that sucks us out of our full being. We think we are the only ones in this complex universe that are experiencing this utter despair, but we are not. We are not alone. In fact, it is what makes us human, ever-so-beautiful, and deeply mysterious. We come from stories, are shaped by our stories, and are impacted by the stories around us. Luckily, we get to create and shape our stories, in time, with courage.

It is impossible to escape trauma in our lifetime. It is a path that we encounter. For some, our wounds take over our entire being and our whole lives. For others, the trauma is so deeply embedded in their history, that it is mistaken for a personality trait or mistaken for identity. When trauma has been misplaced and taken out of its roots, it can become misrepresented and fall out of context. It is a trauma that has gone untouched, a deep wound that has gone unacknowledged. It is tucked ever so deeply in the back, in the darkness, underneath hoards and hoards of pain and clutter.

Those traumas pull on the energy of the soul, the energy of our being. It leaves a sense of deep tiredness, deep loss, and a profound lack of movement or energy to do anything in this life. Alternatively, it can present itself as energy so chaotic, so out of alignment, that it spews everywhere without any sign of containment and leaves the heart in a constant race against time. Still, little gets done; the body is left tired and alone. It is as if that trauma, tucked so far away under the rubble, has tentacles. It reaches, pulls, and clings to all aspects of the self and what gives it life.

How do you even find it if it has been so deeply pushed away and pushed aside? It is like a parasite. It needs to live and feed off the places its tentacles have latched onto, latching onto the pain, latching onto the fear. It feeds off danger and keeps the body in a constant state of bracing for what might come. It is a lot of responsibility to acknowledge our hurt, but it takes no prisoners, and we have no choice. Often, trauma can take the form of limiting beliefs. The negative voices that flow through your ether without permission, that whisper, “You are not good enough.” It can sound like the voice that says, loudly, “You do not deserve love,” or the voice that smiles with hate, knowing it has your attention when it tells you, “Your needs do not matter.” That is not true, and that is not you. It is the limiting voice of trauma, preventing you from stepping into your full self; it tells you an untrue story about yourself. The stories of our limiting beliefs shape how we take in the world and shape how we mistakenly see ourselves. It can feel so real and true, but it is all just a mirage.

Beliefs that are not yours, that stop you from being truly you, belong to the trauma. It was not safe to be seen or heard or to have needs at one time, so you held it all back and kept it hidden away in a small jar that you dug deep into the earth for no one to find.

It is a lot to hold after it outgrows its quiet space, with its limiting whispers. It can feel like a heaviness that sits on your chest that makes it hard to breathe when all you wish is to have a moment of ease, a moment of breath that flows in and out with life and clarity. It can feel like a tightness in your neck or a heavy burden on your back. You cannot even name or decipher what that is, but you know it is not yours. You know it cannot be all yours, alone.

Somehow, it goes unnoticed, as it quietly rises. It moves from one hand to the other, from one generation to the next. The untouched trauma, the unhealed wounds of the past, are passed on to us. It keeps on moving steadily until, at last, it is courageously met with vulnerability.

What else gets moved from one generation to the next? Hope. Strength. Resilience. Love. Knowledge. Wisdom. True, these things, so sweetly precious, so magically powerful, are hidden away as well. It makes sense to hide your power. It makes sense to protect your magic, your knowledge, your wisdom. You hide it so it won’t be taken away, shamed, or disrespected. You hide it so it won’t get hurt, and you hide it because it is all you have. It gets hidden so well, so deep within the caves of your being, that it gets lost and forgotten. It is hidden and tucked so far away in the corners of the heart that it almost seems too lost to ever be found. The mind searches, it wonders, it plays and replays and imagines just where it was left and where it might be. The body knows. The body knows where it lives, so the heart gently nudges, and with a spark, moves the words into your being, “I am here. I am right here.”

We can feel that we are our trauma, that it has a say, that it takes the lead. It is just the familiar. It is easy to let go into what we know, no matter how painful, no matter how destructive. It is what we know, and that can feel like some sort of comfort—it is predictable. Letting go into the self is something new. That can feel unfamiliar. It asks you to be vulnerable. It asks you to be with fear. Fear rises, the type of fear that calls and calls you some more, and that connects to that inherent knowledge deep inside that says, “Yes, that is it. This is right.
I am enough, I am full of love, I am wise, I know what I need, and I deserve to have needs.” You can feel that knowing, in the warmth of your heart and in the fires of your gut, it feels like a vibration—a buzz so sweet, so gentle, so right, that it lifts you upright, holding you in a soft strength.

The heart knows all it needs; the heart knows all the answers to what it is you need and the wisdom to bring you back to yourself. The knowing never leaves; it rests inside of you, speaking a language that is yours, speaking a wisdom that is so deeply profound, it brings tears of joy and tears of relief. It brings a love that cannot be expressed, but that ever-so-gracefully melts you into strength. It is all there, waiting to meet the trauma with understanding and with honor. Honoring how you have coped, how you have survived, and ready to offer you more—more space for your being, more space for clarity, more space for ease and space for grief to unfold. To allow space for pain to do what it needs so that you can transform back into your being, starting from a clear space, full of love, and a letting go, to allow yourself to be.

Trauma is the response to something that has happened to you—it is not what defines you. The journey back to the self is painful. The journey back to the self is hard, unfamiliar, raw, and uncut, but something beings to unfold along the way. It is a newness, a feeling of something different that allows a melting to take place right into your heart.