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Trauma Healing

Becoming our true selves

I had a revelation – I had put my life on pause.

About 3 years ago I unconsciously put my own life on hold. What happened at that time is that I moved in with my partner and we had a baby. Life drastically changed as I moved out of my flat in Dublin city and moved in a quieter area nearby; I said goodbye to single life living with my best friend and embraced sharing a relationship and a 3 bedroom house with my boyfriend. I also lost my job and not long after that we got pregnant.

It was a life overhaul. I switched identities over a few months. Consciously and unconsciously. Voluntarily and involuntarily.

For three years and a half we have been sustaining a certain lifestyle with my partner and it was great for the time being. We’re now coming out of this life cycle with many ripe changes ahead. But I’m also coming to so many realisations about my actions and decisions during that time.

If you ask me if I was happy during that time, I’m afraid I can’t answer with a 100% positive yes. I’m not sure if it is even a 50% percent yes. I’ll stay away from formulaic expressions but I’ll say this: I know this is exactly what I wished for on a subconscious level so I can come to these realisations today.

I’m looking in a perspective and it feels like I’m watching a movie on the big screen. I see a young woman ready to brush aside her own life and throw herself into a committed relationship. A young woman ready to put a new hat on and call herself a spouse, a mother and a housewife – that’s actually three hats! A young woman eager to grow up and mature and act like an adult. A young woman that has never learned the importance of being your true self and ready to forgo that very important time in life when you learn and discover that. A young woman that believed her life was defined by the lives of the people in her family, and that supporting them is her purpose in life.

A young woman that simply didn’t know any better.

I thought I had to stop living for myself so I can support my partner and child and sustain our life as a family. And I did. Though, it wasn’t something that I consciously decided to do. I simply didn’t know that I can live my life and also our life – with my partner and with my child. I didn’t know I could have a relationship with myself and with my partner and child.

I  gave up on myself (before I even got to know myself), thinking I should be focusing on being a spouse and a parent.

Again, I simply didn’t know the importance of getting to know who you truly are – my true self.

Or rather, working to unfold and become who I truly am. But here’s the silver lining:

What happened during these three and a half years was part of my journey which led me to discover the importance of being my true self. Have I not experienced what I’ve been through, I wouldn’t be where I am right now. And that’s exactly what should’ve happened and that’s exactly where I should be right now. And it applies to all cycles in our lives.

And I know it sounds fairly simple to grasp but when you’re in the middle of the battlefield you tend to lose perspective. I know I’ve had these moments before in my life, when I can finally see clearly, but that’s pretty much when you’re out of the battle. And then quickly again you’re into another deadly grip.

But I’d like to go back to the importance of discovering your true self. And while some people have wonderful relationships with themselves and others, other people struggle with issues like self-love, self-respect, low self-esteem and confidence, feelings of low self-worth and not being enough. Here’s me for one!

I believe I’ve reached so deep in my self-exploration (plus the benefit of coming out of a particularly challenging period in my life), that I can faintly see the root cause of all that suffering. 

The challenges that we experience in our lives stem (logically enough) from our childhood. Namely, from the beliefs we form as very young children. Those very first years in our lives when we need to build our base and ground level.

Or not. Sometimes we never do. So that’s why when we’re in our 30s or 40s (perhaps even later or never in this lifetime), we have to turn our lives inside out. We embark on a process of un-doing everything we’ve done so far. We’ve spent years forming fragile identities based on certain false beliefs from early childhood. We’ve constructed rigid egos to protect those fragile identities. We’ve accumulated layers of fears and defenses; we’ve build tall towers of lies about ourselves and others. We’ve hurt a lot and we’ve locked our hearts away in a dark room, never to feel again. Never to be let down again!

Until one day it all shatters. And you’re left bleeding on your own. And you let it all bleed away from you because slowly you start realising, you start seeing beyond the visible. You’re not afraid from the blood anymore, but you see that as a purification. As a stripping of all that you’ve so carefully build.

And can you guess what you get to see after all that’s gone?

You see a small child – you see yourself weeping.

At the end of the day, we realise we were meant to go through all this – that’s why we chose exactly the parents we have; so we can form these false beliefs about ourselves; so we can later start un-doing them; so we can experience all these states, experiences and lessons which our souls need to learn in this lifetime; so our souls can evolve.

And here’s the good news you’ve been waiting for:

Once we see that small child, we can embrace him and help him heal his wounds. Let him know he’s loved and he’s really been silly to believe he wasn’t. Then teach him that love is our birthright and that our parents don’t really mean to hurt us. And we don’t need to prove anything to anyone – we deserve anything we want. The world is our oyster and as human beings we are entitled to be here and have all we wish for.

Once we unfold all that is untrue, we embark on the incredible journey of evolving into our true selves.

Does this resonate with you? Have you found yourself trapped in the life you’ve so carefully built for years? Do you believe early childhood is where all this happened? Share in the comments!


Vilina Christoph is a spiritual writer and uses the power of words to help others on their journey of healing and recovery. She distills challenging life experiences into meaningful lessons and practical wisdom. She believes that finding our voices and speaking our truth empowers us to transform our lives and reach long-lasting fulfillment.


  • Elizabeth Jay

    Wow! What journey of discovery you are on! I can relate to so much of this post and am really excited to be sharing what we are learning with each other! I’ve taken a big step today into the life I want. Exciting to choose ‘me’ over what most people consider normal, but a little scary at the same time! What a great journey this is – to be discovering our true selves! Blessings, friend! x

    • Vilina Christoph

      You’re right to say that “choosing me is scary”, Elizabeth! Stepping into our true potential is probably the most challenging thing we’ll ever have to do in our lives. But nonetheless – the most exciting and rewarding. Looking forward to some updates from you soon! Love and blessings to you, x

  • dfolstad58

    It can seem selfish to choose your own needs but for everyone to be happy long term we have to learn to share our needs so others can respond. Is this on topic?

    • Vilina Christoph

      Hi, yes it is on topic 🙂 I believe these are very basic needs – to share our needs. But sometimes our parents teach us other things and we grow up in life thinking otherwise.

  • K E Garland

    Well, this couldn’t be more accurate for me. All of it is what I’ve experienced. Building an identity based on what family and friends have said and done, and then having to shed those identities and reveal who I “really” am. It’s been quite a journey, and I’m glad to know I’m not alone in feeling the way that I do.

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