The Amanda Quick Show

Healing through Advocacy: A Commitment to Reform

January 20, 2024 Amanda Quick
The Amanda Quick Show
Healing through Advocacy: A Commitment to Reform
The Amanda Quick Show
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As silence cloaks the grim reality of human trafficking, I step forward this Human Trafficking Awareness Month, sharing a narrative that echoes the harrowing journeys endured by many. Imagine: a world where the unspoken truths of legal disparities and societal trauma are brought to light, where the strength of vulnerability becomes the cornerstone for change. Throughout this poignant episode, I tackle the complexities of trauma as the root of deep-seated societal issues, dissecting the systemic failures that rob individuals of their voice. With my own story as a backdrop, I call upon each listener to recognize the transformative power of storytelling, inviting an honest examination of the pressures that demand our silence and the dire need for systemic reform.

This invitation extends beyond awareness—into the realm of unity and action. I lay bare my resolve to uplift and support through advocacy, offering a hand to those embarking on the journey of healing and nonprofit creation. I urge you to join me, for in the web of one-on-one dialogues and community engagement lies the potential for profound partnership and impact. As we conclude this episode, it's not just a sign-off, but a vow to reconvene in our shared mission for societal betterment—a promise to return with more invigorating discussions that champion the collective march towards justice and healing.

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Speaker 1:

Hello everyone, welcome back to the Amanda Quick Show. I am your host, amanda Quick. Today I want to expand a little bit more on some of the conversations that we have been having. It is still January and it is still Human Trafficking Awareness Month, and this month it's really been. There's just so much going on in the world right now that it's been so important, at least from my lensing, to speak up, to speak up to share stories, to talk about all of this stuff, to talk about human trafficking, to talk about privilege in the legal system, to talk about all of the things that I have been sharing in this podcast this month. And what's really what it's really kind of coming around to is this idea of those of us, like myself, who have been through really really challenging situations and have been through exposure to human trafficking, to have been through exposure to privilege in the legal system, have been through traumatic experiences that have stemmed from problems in any of the systems, be it legal, medical, education, etc. All of those stories, all of the things that require awareness, require us to talk and share our stories. You know a lot of people. They really struggle to talk about the hard stuff and I don't really blame them. Society doesn't set us up very well. There's so much judgments pushed on to all of us from the time that we go out into the world, even in school, about how you're supposed to act, who you're supposed to be, what well-behaved looks like, what it means, and we are constantly shaped and formed through positive reinforcement and negative reinforcement when we don't comply with the standard. And all of this includes how we react to other people, how we react to things that don't feel right, that don't look right, that don't just aren't right. And I know for myself, I was never very good at following the rules, and yet, of course, I still did, because I had to exist in society, I had to support myself, I had to graduate school, I had to do the things I was supposed to do as a well-functioning human, and so, whether we'd like it or not, even if we're somewhat, you know, adverse to the rules and traditional ways of operating, we still have to exist here, and so we still do. In a lot of ways. What we're told, and when that happens in society continually, repeatedly, turns a blind eye to horrific events, to not just one singular event but entire structure set up to support horrific events continue to happen and when society turns a blind eye because it's so freakin uncomfortable and nobody taught us how to react and respond to these things. Nobody wants to feel the atrocities in their system, of course not. But when they turn a blind eye to things like human trafficking, to things like privilege, to things like all of the traumatic events that have continued to happen, all it does is tell all of the people who have those experiences and have those stories to keep quiet. Society wants us to keep quiet and not shake the boat, not rock people. Well, sorry, that is not why I'm here, I am. Well, I refuse at this point to keep quiet. It's not who I am, it's never who I have been. And yet I still did for a while until I couldn't anymore. I can't and won't keep quiet and I encourage everybody listening, anybody out there who has those stories, to not keep quiet either, to rock the boat, to say the triggering thing, because if we don't talk about it, nobody will even know it's happening. Nobody will even know it's happening and then we'll never begin to have a conversation to change it. I want to be invited into the room to have the conversation about how do we fix the legal system. How do we make trauma-informed practices? How do we educate jurors, judges, lawyers all of them About what this looks like? How do we shift it? How do we recognize that trauma is the root of all addiction issues, all abuse issues, all of it? Like, how do we actually address the root problem instead of just trying to band aid it all up? That's the conversation I want to have, and if I don't talk about it, well, that's certainly never going to happen. And yes, there, it's not just on me. There are many people out there having this conversation and I will continue to lift them up and to speak just as loudly and together I have to believe that eventually we will be heard. But the more of us who speak up, the more of us who talk about it, the more will be heard, the louder we'll get. A lot of times it's the loudest person in the room that is heard, not the quietest, and so we have to become the loudest. And you know, I think that's in a lot of ways why I am the way I am, why I've had the experiences I've had and why my story is so shocking. You know, I've had people talk about the name of my book and even just saying I wrote a book oh what's it? Called the Sex Trafficker's Wife. What I did it on purpose, of course they did, because I have to get your attention. The awareness is too freaking important to be quiet about it. These things are happening every, every freaking day. These things happen not just to me, not just to my children, but to many, many people out there. People are fighting for custody from their abusers who have done what my ex did and worse, every day. And the system doesn't. It gets it wrong all the time. It doesn't do anything about it because, whether they don't have the money, they don't have the proof, or they are penalized because of the support to the person, because of their trauma, all of the things. As you can tell, it is something that really still, I will remain passionate about, because it's a problem, and I do feel like part of why I had to go through. What I had to go through was to bring awareness, was to keep talking about it, and months like January of every year, I will have these conversations on any avenue and channel I have, because this type of awareness doesn't just get fixed overnight. It's not like oh, somebody started talking about it, now it's fixed. No, it takes continual dedication and commitment to change. You know, I've been having a lot of conversations about what it even means to be committed to something not necessarily someone, but to a mission. What does it mean to be committed to a mission? What does it mean to be committed to a mission To stand up for your truth, to speak out even when nobody seems to be listening. What does that mean? It's not easy. It's not easy to talk about things that nobody wants to hear. It's not easy to see the triggering thing, knowing what their response is probably gonna be. You can almost feel it preemptively. I know when I say this it's not gonna sit well and I'm gonna say it anyway. To me, being committed to this mission means that I don't stop. It means, when I don't get a response or reaction, that doesn't mean it was wrong. The other thing I said was not okay. It just means I have to keep talking until the right person listens. And until the right person listens, I will keep at it, whether that's in this podcast, whether that's places on stage, whether that's through my TEDx event or anything else they do. I will keep talking about this. I will keep sharing my story. I will keep sharing the triggering components. I'll keep sharing my lessons, my learnings, the healing, all of it, because it's too fricking important not to and I know that there are many, many, many people out there with a big ass story too. Something happened to them that they're still struggling with, you're still recovering from, you still feel like it impacts your day today, and what I want to say to you is it doesn't have to stay that way. I was having a conversation with a friend of mine who sent me I think it was a TikTok or something and she sent me this video from a neuroscience student, and the student was super excited because they had just published some new research that they were able to prove the difference between trauma resulting in PTSD and memory, the idea being that this theory was if a traumatic event was miscoded in our minds as not memory and instead we were continuing to experiencing it as present. That's why PTSD victims continue to have triggering traumatic moments in their day-to-day life, because the thing that had happened in the past didn't get coded in their brains as memory anymore. It got coded as like a continual loop that they relive and replay over and over and over again, and I remember that feeling. I remember feeling like there was nothing I could do. Everything was just escalating. Even the thought of speaking to my ex-husband going through my case was triggering my body would have a physical panic attack and somehow I still had to survive. I still had to go to work, I still had to take care of my kids, I still had to do the things and I was trying to figure out how to live in this reality of present. And even when it was over, I still felt like it was still happening. I couldn't drive around the neighborhood or the town really without scanning around everything to see is he there somewhere or something gonna happen, like he was gonna get out of his car and talk to us, which is ridiculous. But my body couldn't stop that. It was still actively happening in my system even when it was over. And for me. I learned how to recode that memory and put it in the past. I learned how to change it so that it was in fact a memory and the person that I am now today feels almost completely separate from the person that experienced that trauma. It's a really weird place to be because the story is so much powerful, potent messages. The person speaking it is sitting here talking to you, laughing, smiling, happy, not traumatized, and I think it can be confusing sometimes to look at me and go wait. What I have no idea Well, that's the point is that those experiences don't have to stay present. Moment memories they can move to the past, they can become a gift, they can become the blessing that turns into this cause and mission that still holds emotion. Yes, I won't lose the passion for this mission, but it no longer impacts my day to day life. I no longer feel like I'm scanning my environment for something to happen, because I was able to do that, and part of what I want to share is the potentiality for people to change that experience, to realize that, once we can fully overcome it and come out of the moment where it's presently currently happening to us and we can move it into memory, we have such a massive opportunity, a huge opportunity to use that experience to help other people, to help them feel not alone, to make big changes in systems, to speak our truth in a way that honestly starts to feel like maybe it was even all worth it which is crazy, I know to say. And yet maybe it was Because I wouldn't be who I am now. That's for darn sure I wouldn't have the relationship with my kids today, that's for sure. I wouldn't have met my now husband, that's even more sure. I wouldn't be even in this town that I'm in, this state that I'm in, I wouldn't be. I would certainly wouldn't be about to speak at a TEDx event in less than two freaking weeks. There is no way any of those things would be true if what happened didn't happen. And if I didn't, I wasn't able to step into the person I am today, if I wasn't able to move that experience into the past and use it. That that is the biggest blessing of my life so far, and it's only barely really begun. And I want to use the power of my story to help heal others, to help invite others to do the same and to help encourage others to use their story for awareness, for change, for all the impact that we're all here to make. That, to me, feels like it makes it all worthwhile If not only can I change the system that wronged me, so to speak, but if I can encourage everybody else to also help change those systems. Well, that is a fight I will gladly, gladly step up, for it's almost like I'm talking on this double mission and that's okay. I mean, I'm here for it Because there's a hell of a lot of things about the world that could shift. There's a lot of people out there who do not feel safe physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually. There are a lot of people out there who have no idea what safety even means. They have never experienced it. There are so many issues rooted in the repeated traumas through lifetimes and generations of abuse, suffering, poverty, racism. We can just go on and on and on. There's so many things, and while I don't think I'm carrying the weight of all of it on my shoulders, no, but I have a voice and I have a story and I am here to share it, and so do you. If you've been listening to me, if you've been listening to my rambling and my stories and my mission, you probably do too. You may not know the details of it yet and you may not fully understand it, but I can pretty much guarantee that, if you've been resonating with my words, that you do too, and maybe you have been starting to talk about it or maybe you're still terrified to talk about it. Both of them are okay. There's no wrong. Wrong in still in the unraveling phase. Please don't mishear me there. It is a process. It is a process that everybody will go through at their own pace. Eventually, the goal is to feel safe enough in yourself, safe enough in your body, in your mind, in your emotions and in your spirit, so that you too can comfortably share your story, and whatever method that is. Maybe it's through your voice, through your words, maybe it's simply just telling your neighbor, it doesn't matter. But when you can find the safety in that, you can use the power of your story and you can also join in this mission to use it as it was intended, because we don't go through hell for nothing. That is something I deeply, deeply believe. We don't go through hell for nothing. We go through all of it for a purpose, for us, for the collective, for exactly the world that we are here to create. I am just, I won't stop, and I encourage all of you not to stop as well. And if you wanna connect with me one-on-one, if you wanna connect with me in my community, if you just want to network and feel into how we might collaborate together, I invite you to send me a message, send me an email. I am on a mission to help as many possible people, as I can, in any of these forms that I can, whether it's sharing my experience, whether it's helping other people start their own nonprofits, whether it's helping people heal so they can share their stories all of it, I'm here for it. I invite you to reach out. I invite you to reach out. I invite you to reach out because we can't do this alone. All right, everyone, lots of love. I will see you next week.

Human Trafficking and Trauma Awareness
Inviting Collaboration and Connection