Photo by Roussety Gregory

Bertha’s Son by Joseph Waddy is an autobiography of challenges and successes. Trauma will change you and more, but it is in your hands if it’s for the better or not.

Trauma can be attributed to a lot of different interrelated and adjacent subjects, but when spoken of, it is mostly referring to the emotional and psychological damage that people experience from catastrophic or extremely personal events.

Traumatic events happen at any time and, if left to their own devices, cause lasting harm. Trauma touches differently from person to person. Some are affected by trauma only a little, while others are burdened by trauma throughout their whole lives. One thing is certain, though, that trauma will change you, but whether it’s for the best or it’s for the worst is entirely up to the kind of person you want to be.

Baptism of Fire

If you are someone who has been through trauma, it is important that you remember and acknowledge that you survived. You found yourself in flames and emerged baptized–and, despite what you did, what you are experiencing after the fact is completely normal and natural. The mind is a fragile thing, but it is because the human will is strong that the mind persists as it does. 

Of course, just because you survived a traumatic experience does not mean you will survive them all. So, be careful, be watchful, and be mindful of the things happening in your life. While trauma transforms, it can also dominate your spirit. 

Yet, it is important to remember that everyone has been touched by trauma and that it is not a failing to ask for help or to want to be helped.

Trauma Will Change You for the Better

Because a vast majority of individuals are not fully equipped to handle the burden of trauma, it is often seen as something negative and damaging to the mental well-being of the individual. However, while that may be the case, several people who have also undergone traumatic events can reliably say that they turned over a new leaf due to them.

While trauma can be akin to a complicated labyrinth that is difficult to navigate your way out of, the experiences you encounter can give you a unique and broader perspective about things and a greater sense of empathy for a wider pool of individuals.

  • A common outcome of how trauma will change you is how your experiences will compel you to confront your vulnerabilities. When someone is severely traumatized, they are often drawn into deep contemplation–thoughts of their mortality and place in the world. This overwhelming vulnerability leads to a more intimate understanding of how human relationships affect people. This also leads to a more pronounced appreciation for everything in life, from the big things to the small, which teaches individuals that there is more to life than the material things and that there should be implicit priority toward one’s relationships with others.
  • While traumatic experiences give individuals a deeper appreciation for the world around them and the people that inhabit it, it is also a crucible of sorts. Trauma will change you and mold you to become a more steadfast and resilient individual who has a wider perspective on things and a better understanding of how to navigate challenges and alarming circumstances. The experience of trauma and surviving it reminds individuals that they have gone through greater tribulations, which makes the smaller things much, much more manageable.
  • Additionally, after exposure to trauma, an individual can discover a higher sense of purpose and direction in life. This is because trauma and the troubles that you are forced to attend to when undergoing it gives you a clearer vision and a more profound clarity, especially on which things are worth living for and which should be regarded as mere distractions. 
  • While it is not often discussed because of the broader implications, trauma is also a great source of inspiration. Although it is highly stereotypical of the mad artist trope, there is a certain kernel of truth to the idea that a deeper well of creativity and imagination can be pulled from trauma. This is because traumatic experiences, more often than not, upend ingrained perspectives and worldviews, forcing traumatized individuals to consider other possibilities and ideas.

Bertha’s Son

For a better look at how trauma will change you, Bertha’s Son by Joseph Waddy explores the ways in which deception, seduction, and violence can become intertwined. 

Joseph is a young child in a household that hides deep trauma. His mother, Albertha, was just a young virgin when she was raped by the despicable Joseph, who quickly abandoned them. His grandmother is Clara, who has to wrestle with the trauma of losing her husband and discovering that her daughter was violated.

It is an autobiography of challenges and successes despite the darkness that one comes from.

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