I was 12 years old when I first recognised anxiety. I woke up one morning and it felt like a lightning bolt went through my body and feelings of complete loss followed. I had been brought up in a close family with three brothers, 2 older than myself and my closest brother two years younger than me. We moved around a lot as my father was in the services so we spent a lot of time together, mostly playing soccer and other sports. I’m sure my older brothers used to get fed up looking after their younger sister impacting their plans when hanging out with their friends. On this particular morning I realised what a huge change had occurred in my life where it felt my older brothers no longer figured in my life. They had moved on to relationships and careers and I felt completely alone.

I also realised that I had relied on them for my stability, nurture, companionship and friendship, never having stayed long enough in one place growing up to form lasting friendships of my own. The anxiety showed top in me as loss and abandonment leaving a large empty feeling that stayed with me for 7 years until I was 19. Conseqnthly I found myself getting caught up in all sorts of undesirable situations. But I only had a brief respite from that desolate feeling as my hunger brother who I had formed a very deep loving relationship got killed in a car crash which sent me tumbling down a dark deep hole which I never thought I would be able to climb out of. My life felt like it had ended when Nick died and my soul had separated in two. He was the half of me that I had lost.

My brother was my twin soul. I could sense myself going into a deep depression, and then intense anxiety took over. I became afraid of a life without him and questioning how I was going to cope not seeing him again. I remember trying to imagine living until I was 80 and wondering how I was going to be able to go that long without seeing him. I couldn’t fathom it. That particular thought made me very anxious about life itself. I was very scared and all I wanted to do was leave and be with him. It was in this dark place where I tried to meditate each day for some respite from the pain where I really came to understand myself as a human being and how much we relied on the human touch and physical presence of one another to feel safe navigating life’s maze of emotions, thoughts and feelings.  I desperately sought help from my spiritual guides and healers to help me help work through the pain and separation and to put myself back together again.  His death really brought home the understanding that nothing of a human nature was forever, and I needed to learn how to find my inner self that I understood was the strongest part of me, my soul, so I could stop obsessing over how I was going to emotionally survive.

I was completely “broken inside” after my  brother’s passing. It affected my health. I began to develop digestive problems that lead to food intolerances. I was screwed up emotionally and my mind would not rest. I spent hours each day talking to “spirit’, reading about life after death. I was definitely obsessive, staying indoors reading, crying, begging for help and getting trapped in the pain of it all. The stress also triggered an outbreak of acne that made me feel really ugly, where I didn’t venture outside for months. I felt ashamed. When I did go outside people stared at me and I would hide my face. I felt like a leper and I hated my life.

But help came slowly from my requests for help and I was shown a way to heal my emotional pain, so I started on a journey of self healing to learn self-healing after. I understood years later that when my brother died I took myself to a really dark place so I could learn to put myself together again and help others do the same. I saw myself as a jigsaw puzzle that had become completely separated and scattered by the shock of what had happened. Those parts of me that are scattered, I had lost sense of. They were trapped in the gaps between the pieces of the puzzle. I could see why I felt so lost and despairing. At that time I had no real idea of how I was going to gather up those scattered parts that were caught in the gaps. But I kept asking for help and I also realised that if I got myself in this maze, I could find my way out.

It took many years of self healing to get back to a semblance of wholeness and completeness and even then more healing was needed as we are continually experiencing life and life’s many situations. Like my first marriage to an alcoholic which turned me “inside out and into someone I didn’t recognise anymore”. But that story is for another time.

I now know that if I hadn’t experienced that break and rebuilding of myself I wouldn’t be able to help people the way that I can now  because each painful experience that I chose on a soul level, has given me the extraordinary insights and understanding.

You know, no matter how dark it gets. How much our inner light goes out. We can always find our way out and back home to our Self.  The most beautiful thing I got out of it the times I fell into depression and anxiety and suicidal thoughts was that I could stop the misery and pain at any time.  All I needed was to call on my soul to show me how.

I have spent a lifetime uncovering the real me and it was worth every experience to know who I am and what I am capable of.


About Sandy Hounsell

My speciality is turning your pain into power...

Since 2001 I have been helping transform women’s and men’s lives in healing the trauma experienced through abuse, by dissolving the root cause and the manifestation of those experiences like unhealthy relationships, anxiety, depression, self sabotaging behaviours, repetitive patterns that has disconnected you, from the Real You...Read More >

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