A Mess

Packing up somewhere sounds like it will be easy. Then the packing begins, and all of these old memories come up. Suddenly, things that have not been seen have meaning. The house actually becomes more of a mess as trash is separated from keep. Then, there is the I have no idea pile. At least I know that progress is being made.

I overreacted with my daughter yesterday. She was playing with all of the other kids. There was an adult around who reminded me of the past and freaked me out. I yelled at my daughter to come sit by where I was. I cannot explain the panic and fear that took over me in that moment. I do not ever want her to have negative experiences if I can prevent it.

Maybe I have been through to much and have done to much research. A person can still be a pedophile if they have kids or if they are older. There is not just one description. I do not care if they are at the same party, a background check was not done to get into the party and something could happen.

Luckily, my daughter and I had a productive talk last night about the incident and I assured her that it was nothing that she did.

Today means more packing and getting the house ready for pictures. Should be a busy day.


Living Nightmares

Why does therapy have to be so difficult. I wish that I did not have to go through hell and feel all of my emotions associated with the abuse I had growing up.

Not that not being in therapy would help either. I still have flashbacks when there are certain colors or smells. Locations are the worst. These are not dependent on therapy.

At least a horror movie can be turned off. Not so with memories. They haunt me while awake and asleep. PTSD has taken so much from me. I am always scared to be out of the house and am hyper vigilant. I try to go out and be “normal” yet I have scars that are visible and I am always looking around me waiting for the next event to happen.

Maybe one day I will be able to relax and process all of the horrible things that happened.

Things are Healing

My injury is healing. I go back to the doctor tomorrow for a check up. Physically, I have a wound and scars.

The problem is mentally. I still feel like I am just walking through the day getting the things done that I need too. Even that is at a bare minimum.

I am still trying to get my ex and all of my doctors together in order to see my kids. I was fortunate enough last night that I was able to see one of the kids in a concert.

Getting my medications has been a bit of an adventure lately. I call a refill in and give a time when I will pick it up. Then, usually after that time I go in to pick it up and it is not ready. I am told it will be 20 minutes, yet if I had not called it in the wait time would be the same. Solution: just walk in and save the phone call.

It seems as if I have began to snore so loudly that it is waking my husband up. This is a problem when he needs to get up in the morning. I made a appointment with the doctor to see what is the cause and if anything can be done about it.

There are still some loose ends that I need to tie up with school. I just am scared to even go to the neighborhood where the school is located. I am going to have to take a deep breath and just do it.

My therapist wants me to feel the feelings that were repressed around events when I was a kid. I am scared to show feelings to anyone. He wants me to write about it between now and Friday. Hopefully I can get some words onto the page.

What a Nightmare **May Trigger**

I had to go for a mandatory test yesterday with a doctor that I did not know. The test was administered in an area where I grew up. Everything came flooding back to me as I sat in the damp waiting room with a tiny air conditioner which had seen better days.

I remembered my mother leaving me in the car as she would go shopping in businesses that were gone long ago or going to the dentist in the same buildings. Just down the street was the church where I had made all of my sacraments and was glad to get away from as soon as I could.

This was an area that I choose not to go into because it was a dark hole in my past. This was an area of living nightmares and haunting experiences. I intentionally avoid the area when at all possible. Yesterday, I did not have a choice. I was mandated to go into a little building with a dark staircase and a mildewy smell.

This caused all of my symptoms to become active. I was having flashbacks, I was hyper vigilant, I began to shake, and I had impulses to self harm to feel better. The examiner asked if I was like this all the time and I replied that I was uncomfortable and the shaking was not unusual.

The examiner actually followed me out to my car after the test to make sure I was ok. The first thing that I did was to email my therapist and then call my psychiatrist. The next thing that I remember was that I called my husband to tell him that I was not safe to drive home. My hands and feet were going numb and I was in and out of the present.

I felt violated. Someone who did not know me or my condition was asking me questions that I had a hard time answering. I did not want to discuss my abuse in detail and only gave who and the years that it occurred. She wanted to know details about my illness that I have not shared with those who have been treating me for years.

She seemed to believe I was ok because I white knuckled it to stay out of the hospital to see my children. Even though I told her I was needing to call my treatment team more than once a week to check in with my safety.

Yesterday night was hard. I have flashes of my husband asking me about my PRN’s and what I needed. I do not know what I would do without him. Today, I just want to isolate. I do not want to see or speak to anyone. I am questioning if this brought up to much and if I should go into the hospital and am trying weigh the pros and cons of inpatient vs outpatient treatment. Inpatient would at least make me feel safe and allow me to have staff there, yet I need to work on things in outpatient treatment in order to function outside of the hospital’s protective walls.

Looking Back: Not a Pretty Picture **May Trigger**

12 years of treatment and yet I can still become triggered to the point of dysfunction. Last week, there was a video shown in one of my classes. What I saw and heard on the screen made me want to throw up for the first time ever. To hear the sound of an object against bare skin. To hear the terror and a child pleading to stop.

I am trying to deal with what was brought up in therapy, yet part of me realizes that it will not ever change what happened and just does not want to talk. 

Mental illness. The attitudes that some of the people around me who want to work with oppressed groups really gets to me. The word crazy has been used. The idea that people with mental illnesses should not have children or their children should be taken away from them. What would they think if they knew about me? 

Now it is about hiding. Trying to act like nothing is affecting me when all I want to do is scream at the top of my lungs. The word ignorant comes to mind. I think they really do not realize what they are saying and who is sitting next to them.

Looking back on my own abuse. The beatings, the sexual abuse, the emotional neglect, the psychological abuse. How did I get through it? People do not want believe in DID, yet that is what got me through. That internal environment was the only place that was safe for me to go into. My own world that no one could take away.

Why Did I Ask Again?

Last therapy session I really got on my therapist. I will go off topic again if I can every time an uncomfortable subject comes up. It is not concious, yet thinking back to the session, I know that I have done it. At this point, it frustrates me.

When I was a teen and people were asking me questions, avoiding was a way of survival. I was so scared that I would make a mistake and talk. What would happen if my abusers found out? Life was all about making excuses and making sure that no one knew the real truth about what was going on.

Fast forward to today. My parts still feel like we are going to get in trouble for talking. Like my abuser will somehow magically know what is going on. Yet I need to talk. I need to go through all of the events from the past that are still weighing me down and causing my symptoms to be high.

I know therapy is not easy. I have asked my therapist to push. To not let things get off topic. I am tired of walking out of therapy being disappointed that once again I did not share what I went in to talk about.

This means facing my demons head on and not being able to hide. I need to do this. I want to try to get a little better, yet my brain fights getting well. The memories are pure hell. Sometimes I would rather be physically injured then have to talk about what went on behind closed doors.

I have asked and we shall see how today goes. There is a topic that has been floating out there for a while. Today, it needs to begin to be discussed. 

They do Not Make a Medication

I wish that they made a medication or a treatment that would make all of the memories go away. They are always there, always a part of my past. There are the days that I can use my coping skills and diminish the effects of a memory or flashback. There are other days when even the best coping skills do not work. 

Sometimes I wish that I knew more about my family history. That people were more honest about what they went through and if it still bothered them. Maybe it would help me to understand why I have PTSD and others do not. 

I was once told by a treatment provider that everyone does does not get PTSD. There could be 40 people in a space when a traumatic event happens and only a small percentage would have the symptoms associated with PTSD.

I think of it like a switch. The switch can be turned off for years. Then, something happens, and that switch gets turned on. Why can’t the doctors figure out what that is and make a medication or therapy that treats that switch. 

Instead, those memories take the form of flashbacks and nightmares. They are a part of me. A part that some people cannot accept and others think that they will catch. 

One day, with advocacy and education, more people will understand mental illness and be open to accepting those who have it. Those in medical school will be interested in researching trauma and there will be more students who choose to go into the field. That is my hope!

A Math Problem ##MAY TRIGGER##

I do not remember what class it was in high school, I only know that it was a math class. There was a problem about digging a hole. The problem went something like the person dug three feet and two feet would get filled back in. How long would it take to dig 10 ft. That is how trauma work feels right now.

The only problem is that the hole gets filled completely in or there is a mountain on top of the hill. Spring is supposed to be a good time. The weather is warmer, summer break is around the corner, and my husband even booked a wonderful vacation for us to a spot that I love.

Memories. The memory of being told that I should have died, the memory of having to just get over everything while my mother talked for hours and days about her two stillborn children, the memory of being molested. Other memories of being bullied or wearing long sleeves in 80 degree weather to cover up bruises on my arms.

Right now the past sucks and the present does not feel much better. True, there are some things that I do have control of. Then there are those things that I do not have control of. My ex wanting more child support. My body feeling to weak to be able to dance, yet pushing through.

This has all led to thoughts of suicide and self-harm. I have been trying to get “better” for 12 years now. There are days when there are glimmers of hope. This time of year those days are few or do not exist at all. 

How do I explain this to the people around me. If I had a stomach bug or the flu others would understand. People cannot be inside my head. They do not know the flashback and the exhaustion that comes along with all of this. Most people do not want to hear about negative things.

Where does that leave me? Feeling very alone and frustrated. Anger has built up inside me. I feel like screaming that I just need a break. There is no break from my mind. I cannot turn it off. 

When a Movie Can be an Example

Trauma is often not understood. Terms like flashbacks, hyper-vigilance, and dissociation are foreign. 

Today, my kids wanted to watch The Hunger Games. As I watched with them, I saw all of those terms come alive on the screen. I thought, I wished more people understood. 

Trauma does not go away. It gets relived and revisited. Therapy is slow and tedious for me. I am a detail person and some memories are like walking through a fog, while others are clear.

It is scary to say them out loud. For me, it makes whatever happened real. It is easier to believe it was all a horrible nightmare. 

Where Has The Time Gone?

Where Has The Time Gone?

I did not even realize how long it has been since my last post!!

My cat is healing from surgery. It has been quite a month with her. A simple surgery turned into Pet ER visits more vet visits and a pretty miserable kitty for a few weeks. She is now back to begging for food and her hair is growing in. No more kitty cone!!

My car is finally back and better than before the accident. The more important part is that I can get to therapy and groups!!

The kids are doing well. Their dad has started to date someone with kids and they are feeling upset about him spending his time with someone else. At least they have continued to open up to me! I guess that I have not done a completely horrible job as a mom.

Stress has crept up on me and I am acting on my Eating Disorder. Not everyday, but most days. I wish that I could just stop, but it is not that easy.

I have started to apply for jobs. All have rejected me. I will be the first to admit that my work history is horrible. Someone is really going have to want to take a chance on me to hire me. I am just waiting patiently for that person.

I was able to see my service dog in training at the organizations annual picnic. It was so freeing to be able to walk with him and have him by my side! I cannot wait until my formal training with hm.

Other than the above, my mother had a birthday. I barely survived the day, yet I got through it. I am debating over what kind of relationship that I really want with her because I know that the current one is not healthy for me.

Well, that is it for now. I am sure that I left something out. I need to get better at doing this more often. Again thanks to everyone for the support, esp. when my cat was sick. It really helped.