Archive for the ‘PTSD’ Category

h1

Continuing to learn about “trauma brain”…

March 17, 2014

I recently started reading again about PTSD and what I call “trauma brain”. The stress of some things in our living situation started to overwhelm me and I really needed to find more support and more information. So, I started searching again and found more information. Actually, there seems to be quite a bit more, but here are some things I am finding.

Apparently, they are now coming up with official labels for “trauma brain”…the brain that has developed in a biologically different way as a result of persistent abuse/trauma in early childhood. I am still learning about the labels and how they are separate and how they overlap with PTSD.

They now have something called Complex PTSD…or C-PTSD. I believe this is a new label because I don’t remember seeing it before. I also saw DTD…Developmental Trauma Disorder. There are several articles that I have not read, yet, but I am going to share them here because a quick perusal indicates that they have some very useful information.

A few years ago I read about the push to put DID under the PTSD category in the DSM. There was quite a debate about it. Clearly the two are connected, but not everyone agreed on putting one under the other. I wonder whatever happened with that. Perhaps, some of these articles hold the answer.

So, here they are, in no particular order…more articles on PTSD in its various forms. I chose the ones that went the most in depth (which is why I have not read all of them yet myself).

Developmental trauma, complex PTSD, and the current proposal of DSM-5 by Vedat Sar

Complex post-traumatic stress disorder by Wikipedia

Reconceptualizing Child Traumatic Stress in Child Welfare  by Ally Jamieson, MSW

Part Four: From care to where? Early brain development susceptible to neglect, abuse – Emotional, physical trauma in childhood can cause delays in brain maturation, say experts by Tracy Sherlock, Vancouver Sun

I have added these links to the Abuse, Trauma & the Body/Brain page.

h1

Making Progress…and other odds and ends…

March 15, 2014

Gosh, November! Has it really been that long since I have blogged? I guess it has, obviously! There are so many things I could share, but it is challenging to know where to start. So, here, in no particular order, are some odds and ends of my life for the last three months.

I now have a working bathtub!!! I cannot say enough how therapeutic it is to be able to take a long soak. Cheap therapy. Even if I cannot do it in the moment…just knowing I can is HUGE! That happened very recently, about two weeks or so ago? In fact, it happened after we put the house up for sale.

Which leads to item number two (but who’s counting, anyway).  One of our sons has offered to move us in with him and our wonderful daughter-in-love.  This is because his dad is in a lot of pain and had to quit working. So, our unfinished house that we have been living in is for sale.

Next tidbit…I have sporadic contact with my father via email. He still does not know where we live (other than generally) and does not have my phone number. It is all good..meaning that I am taking care of myself.

I had a cult GF (who also does not know where I am) contact me via email. She has to sell her house (which I thought I saw sold a couple of years ago on the Internet) and wanted to know my address so she could ship me some boxes of books I “left” in her garage years ago. Neither Dave or I recall leaving books. I wrote to ask her what books they were and have not heard from her since. So, yes, I think the feelers still go out. Did I mention that she has met my parents and probably has their number and that her family cult is the same one as mine? Oh yeah, and I had to distance myself from her previously because she was setting off my programming…which is so NOT happening now!

It has been a challenge watching my husband hurt more and more. I believe this move is a good thing, even though it may be moving into the “lion’s den” in some aspects. But G-d goes with us and I believe this move is a “G-d” thing.

I will have to come back soon to this blog because it is time to walk out the door and there is so much more I could say. I want to share some things I am learning about PTSD and “trauma brain”.

Until next time…take care and be blessed!

h1

Telling my story…

November 20, 2013

is not easy. Nor is walking out my healing. There are many who would not understand my story. They would think it too fantastic…to unbelievable. They would not want to believe that such things even happen. Funny thing is…some of those same people will read the Old Testament in the bible and not question for a moment the child sacrifices and pagan practices mentioned there. (For those who are upset that I use the word “pagan”, get over it. That word is used in the bible, so if you don’t like it, take it up with G-d. I mean no offense.)

In addition to not being able to fully share my story, there is the fact that I still have to deal with what I dub “trauma” brain and PTSD. I kept thinking I was getting better and then things would happen that would seem to throw me backward. Now, the reality is that I AM better on so many levels. But my other reality, as I have been discovering over the past 6 – 8 years, is that abuse in childhood results in the brain developing differently than the brain of a child who is not abused. I have a whole page dedicated to articles on that topic. Abuse, Trauma & the Body/Brain  Most of the articles are technical and deal with medical studies. There does not seem to be much in the way of practical information on how to heal from this or live with this. So, I do the best I can.

There are some things I have noticed. One thing is that the PTSD leaves me very vulnerable to “over”reacting to stress. In other words, I cannot handle the same stresses that a non-PTSD person can handle. What might be merely an annoyance or discomfort for someone else can result in my insides shaking like crazy. The intensity can be huge. I also have flashbacks that are sometimes so strong that I want to rock back and forth to deal with all that energy.

It can be very challenging for me to be out and about as I never know what will hit or when. I can be at the store or on the road when, all of a sudden, I just want to be home…NOW. It diminishes over time, that is, until I get hit with some other life event that knocks me for a loop. Then I feel as if I am thrown back to square one. For a long time, I thought I should be able to fix this…I just need enough therapy or counseling. But that won’t fix a biological problem. Even the PTSD has a biological tie-in and is connected to the trauma brain…seeing as how the same things caused both.

Between trauma brain (which affects how memories are stored and retrieved) and PTSD (which leaves me more vulnerable to life’s stresses ), day-to-day living can be very interesting…to say the least. Oh, and did I mention that I am also rather amnesic? Yep, I am missing all but a handful of memories of ten years of my younger sister living with our family and a whole host of other things in my growing up years and some of my adult life. Some of it may be missing due to improper storage or non-storage because of trauma brain. Some of it is repressed. Some of it may be hidden behind the cloud of dissociation.

At least I now know that there is precious little I can do about a lot of this other than to pray and just keep pushing forward, one day at a time. I used to think there was something I was neglecting.

Ever since my son was arrested, I have been struggling a lot more than usual…a lot. I am forgetting things…or as one doctor once told me…I am probably not forgetting them, I am simply not recording them. I find myself oftentimes leaving things unfinished as I get so easily distracted. I cannot focus as well. Food gets burned. I leave things out in recipes (not often, thankfully, as I have really been working on checking my recipes multiple times while cooking).

Even before his arrest, I was noticing flashbacks, but my ability to handle them is diminished. Too much added stress, I think. I see things and can feel the stress inside starting to skyrocket, so instead of going through that door or down that tunnel to see what is there…what memory is trying to surface…I find myself pushing it away.

Anyway, that is life for me right now. Or at least some of it. I feel overwhelmed. I cannot call people I want to call. I am just making it through each day and trying not to feel guilty for not being “better” than I am. Yeah, I know this is not my fault and largely out of my control, but the rest of the world does not understand and that is what makes it hard. I so want to look “normal” to others because I don’t want to have to tell my story to them. But the reality is that, sooner or later, I need to tell at least a part of it. Maybe…just maybe…they will understand.

To all my friends that I am not calling. I am sorry. It is just beyond me right now and has been for quite a while. I was hoping things would calm down by now…but they are not. In fact, the family situation just keeps getting worse and I am fighting against the effects of it.

I don’t have the energy to proofread this. I hope it turned out OK.

h1

More Resources…

July 31, 2013

I am amazed at how much more information there is out there on how abuse affects the brain than there was only about 10 years ago. Back then you could hardly find anything…or at least anything for the lay person. Now, I see all kinds of articles and studies. There is more understanding of how the brain works and how memory is affected…lots of good information. I hope it helps someone.

I have updated my Abuse, Trauma & the Body/Brain page once again.  It looks like this will be an ongoing thing as more and more research is done. I hope that I will also see start seeing a lot of articles on successful healing and how the lives of survivors are made better.

h1

What is healing…

December 4, 2012

I am not really sure what healing looks like. I think it is different for each person. After years of looking at it, I still don’t have a solid definition, but I can share with you some things that sure look like healing for me.

Healing Is

Healing is being able to laugh…even in the midst of pain.

Healing is being able to cry…even when others are around.

Healing is being able to somewhat identify what I am feeling,
and hopefully…even being able to have an idea of WHY I am feeling it.

Healing is knowing when I need to decompress,
being able to identify safe places to decompress,
and then…doing it.

Healing is being able to sense whether a person or place is safe
And then being able to keep myself safe.

Healing is being able to find joy in life.

Healing is being able to see good things…even when bad things are happening.

Healing is being able to have gratitude for what I do have
rather than bemoaning what I don’t.

Healing is being able to be productive in some way every day
even if I am the only one who recognizes it.

Healing is being able to take a step forward,
no matter how tiny
and even if it is only in my heart.

Healing is being able to face some aspect of my past…without completely crumbling.

Healing is being able to recognize that some part of my history,
no matter how small or big,
no longer has a hold on me.

Healing is being able to make plans…and know that they might actually happen!

Healing is being able to say that I made it through
another minute,
another day,
another hour,
another week,
another month,
another year,
another anniversary,
another flashback,
another body memory,

Healing is having the freedom to fully unleash my creativity and
sing again,
play music again,
write again,
talk again,
share again.

Healing is being able to give without manipulation
and receive without manipulation
even more importantly… recognizing the difference.

Healing is being to allow myself to truly love
and open myself to the potential for heartache without fear,
knowing that I can rise above anything that happens.

Healing is allowing myself to trust others
and being trustworthy myself.

Healing is giving myself permission to live life to the fullest
without thinking much about healing or hurting or my history.
It is allowing myself to temporarily “forget” that I even have an abusive history.

Healing is knowing that I was a victim who dared to survive
and am now a survivor who dares to thrive.

Healing is being able to put words to my experiences,
words like
“rape”
and “sexual abuse”
and “incest”
and “satanic ritual abuse”.
And healing is to put them without capital letters because
I am bigger and taller and stronger than they are
and I refuse to give them capital letter power in my life.

Healing is being able to cry and know that I am OK
and everything will be alright.

Healing is being able to see my Creator’s love for me
even when I know I don’t deserve it.

Healing is being able to see His hand in my life…even during the most awful of experiences.

Healing is being able to see His protection and how He got me through.

I may think of more things to add to that list. As I do, I may edit

h1

Updated Page…

December 3, 2012

I updated my “Abuse and the Brain” page. It is now called “Abuse, Trauma & the Brain” and I added two more articles at the bottom.

These two articles deal with soldiers who have PTSD. Why do some have it and some don’t? They are beginning to study these soldiers lives PRIOR to going into battle to see if there is a clue there. It appears, so far, that it is possible that those who develop PTSD in combat actually already have it. They have had traumatic experiences that caused them to have some symptoms of PTSD prior to the military, symptoms which subsided a bit while in combat, but then came back with a vengeance even worse afterward.

I have to say that my personal experiences seem to bear this out. I have difficulty watching videos that have intense scenes in them. I used to be able to “handle” it when I had to, but it is still there. You would think that, with all the healing I have experienced that it would be better and, in some ways, I so seem to be better able to handle it. However, in some ways it is worse.

I think  my age and the fact that I no longer have the strong young body that could take the stress and bounce back faster is a factor. I simply don’t have as much energy for the “fight”, so I try to be careful about what I expose myself to. A little bit of nervousness (like when I am going to sing) can turn into a raging shakiness that almost incapacitates me. I feel things to the extreme and I believe it is due (at least in large part) to how my brain developed because of all the earlier trauma.

h1

Why Can’t I…

October 3, 2012

Why can’t I feel without being overwhelmed by it? Well, let me clarify, it is not that feeling is always overwhelming, but that feelings connected with remembering are overwhelming. I have already written about this, especially in the previous two posts.

It is a question that is nagging at me. I need the time and space to work on this. I find myself feeling overwhelmed with all that is on my plate. Yet, I am able to keep on moving. Now, it is after midnight and I am, obviously, still up. Could it be that I don’t really want to go to bed because of the time of year? Last night was the first night of sleeping all the way through after several nights in a row of waking up in the wee hours of the morning unable to go back to sleep. Thankfully, I just talk to the L-rd and that helps. I also did a little bit of talking (well…thinking) to myself.

I really need to find out what is going on with me.

h1

I would really like to know…

October 3, 2012

I would really like to know why it is that even fairly recent memories often times trigger huge emotional surges. Why do positive memories evoke the same surges? And I am not talking about something grand like a wedding or something you would expect to bring an emotional high. I am talking about a PTSD-like reaction to common place memories…both from long ago and from the last few years.

I wonder if there is something in these positive and neutral memories and in the more recent memories that is tapping into the past negative ones. Could it be that there are triggers that relate to the past?

Or…could it be the time of year is also affecting me? Overall, it does not feel like it. And this has not just happening recently. I have been this way for a very, very long time. There is something about remembering that affects me. I either remember differently from others or I remember with an emotional surge. Or at least that is for the majority of memories.

I have lain in bed and started to recall something (not a new memory…something I already knew) and I would suddenly start to shake and I would find myself pushing the memory away. Why????

My flashbacks have almost always been the body/emotional kind. Only once in a while would I get the visual kind. When I do get the visual, it is almost always a really quick flash and a huge surge of emotion…PTSD time. I don’t have the space and time to really explore this, so I am just trying to live with it. Ugh!

So, here are my thoughts, for whatever they are worth. I hope that writing will help inside.

h1

Things I have been pondering…

October 2, 2012

I have been thinking about what to write here…the thoughts kind of going around in my head and heart. I am not sure what is going on with me.

When we moved into this house, I thought I would have some space and freedom to do any healing work that needed to be done…while, at the same time, not really being sure of what that work might be. Randy Noblitt told me on the phone about 2 years ago that he thought my system was shut down. Is it? Or is it just so blended that it appears that way? Since he has not worked with me, can he really make that kind of assessment?

I know I am still partially amnesic, but I am not sure how much. I still don’t remember my sister growing up in the same house with me. That is pretty huge…no way around that. But I don’t think blending automatically brings recall. My former counselor knows of quite a few survivors who blended and the memories came later…or some not at all.

Splitting is one form of protection and self-preservation. So is repressing. How much memory recall (or lack of) is due to repression and how much is due to splitting? I don’t know and I don’t know of any way TO know.

Lately, I seem to be getting a few flashes. Can’t tell you what they are because I don’t remember. I find it easy to shove stuff like that aside, but I think something is brewing. I just am not sure what. I am thinking it may be time to talk to “myself” again…like I did a lot in the beginning of this journey.

There is something I notice about myself that might be key to what is going on. When I think about things in the past, I almost always get a surge of emotion. It does not matter what I am remembering. It could be something positive and I get the same surge. It is puzzling to me. And it does not have to be the long ago past, either. It is as if the PTSD element of my mind and emotions is linked to ALL my memories…even fairly recent ones. Why is that?

Of course, our living situation for the last few years before getting into this house was enough to cause PTSD in many people. I have been told time and again by so many that they could not do and they did not know how I did. I just tell them it was the L-rd, plain and simple. He got me through it.

Now I live in an unfinished house that is a bit cluttered and I long for some semblance of order. My husband’s work schedule is all over the map…constantly changing hours and days off…totally inconsistent. It is affecting our whole family. It feels impossible to get into any kind of real routine.

So, I just keep moving forward…I think, anyway. On the one hand, I seem to be doing OK and, on the other hand, I am struggling. This introvert with PTSD is feeling rather drained. And yet, I DO get a lot done.  Just not all I WANT to get done.

I am doing some PSE 8 “art” work…mostly stuff with words that I post on FB. I am fighting for my country on FB. I am home educating high school. And several months ago, I picked up my guitar again after over 12 years of not playing. When the memories started to come and the DID became obvious, everything else in my life pretty much came to a screeching halt as I sought healing.

Now, I am picking it back up and I am singing “publicly” again. I know better than to push forward too hard or too fast. I am singing this Sunday…twice. Do I feel ready? Maybe. I have sung twice now at two singfests. The first time I blew everyone and myself away. I felt like I was “back in the saddle”.

The second time I felt some of the pressure of their expectations. Plus, the mic setup was awkward compared to the first time. It was more chaotic. But the feedback I got was good. Once I am up there and I just start, I get into it and let the music and the Ruach/Spirit take me away. If I can ever get it to be quiet enough in here, I might try recording on my laptop. It probably won’t sound all that good, but I can try.

So, here I am…trying to get my thoughts together, feeling like I am rambling. I have had things to share for some time, but simply not been able to find the words. It is hard for me to understand myself what is going on.

But this I know. The time is short. I am watching what is happening in the world and in my country and I truly believe we don’t have that long before Messiah returns. So, how much time and energy should I try to spend on healing? I really don’t know. I have learned to take each day as it comes. If the right setting and opportunity come along for healing work…I will take advantage of it. So far, it simply has not been here.

I am going to throw some stuff away in the office. That might help. Then I can try to create some kind of space for personal healing. Maybe.

Don’t know if any of this made much sense to anyone, but I just wanted to finally take some time to get some thoughts out…even if they are a bit disjointed.

h1

Been thinking about…

September 5, 2012

One of my sons has been creating a list of the places he has lived. He wants to write a “tell all”, which he tells me he will redact before he lets anyone else read it. In the process of helping him to pinpoint exact addresses, I did some Google searching.

Wow! Talk about being able to see the houses, up front and close. You can see overhead and you can see from the street. I was able to get all the addresses, but one. That one I nailed down to one or two possibilities, though.

The places we lived hold a lot of emotions and memories for me. So, to say it was a bit difficult at times is a bit of an understatement. As I “went” to place after place, I thought of people and events that happened in those place. Of all the places I “visited”, though, one really holds a mystery.

We used to live in an apartment. Someone took me for a drive one late afternoon up into the hills behind the house. I remember going through the trees and on the windy road for a while. I think I remember him asking me about going somewhere. I believe he also asked me if I was thirsty. Bingo! I suspect I was slipped one of those drugs that causes you to forget…a date rape drug.

The next thing I remember is that, all of a sudden, it was dark and I had no idea where we were. We were still (?) in the car and I remember commenting on the fact that it was dark and wondering when it got dark. I asked where we were and he told me. We were a lot farther from home than I had intended to go. He said he wanted to go on to a town I knew for dinner, but I just wanted to go home. He told me that we were not far from the freeway and I told him to take me home. All I could think of was getting home to my children ASAP.

He did take me home. My children were OK, although they were wondering where I had been. I had said something to them about going for a drive, but I did NOT expect to be gone so long and I certainly did not know that “dinner” was part of the drive. Nor did I know about whatever it was that happened during the blackout time.

The next day, I received a huge bouquet of red roses at work. It came with a note that said something about being sorry. And that was it. We never spoke again. The upside is that, when I heard there were roses for me at the front desk, I thought they came from someone else. The disappointment I felt when they did not, woke me up to the fact that I had grown to love the man who later became my husband. So sweet came out of oddity and blessing out of the weirdness.

My focus switched so much away from the drive that I never really did put things together until years later. It finally became obvious that something had happened and that I must have been slipped something. Either that, or he knew programming. He was an alcoholic, which means the cult could easily manipulate him. But I know he really did like me. He even wanted to marry me. So, I think the apology was sincere. It is just that he never told me what it was for…naturally.

Was it date rape? Was it a cult accessing and he was the one to get me there? Was he in the cult (although I do doubt that)? I don’t know and, at this late date (almost 20 years later), I suppose it does not really matter. It was just the last couple of days of  “been thinking about”…

 

h1

Thinking back…

August 14, 2012

In between preparing for another year of home schooling and a potential huge change in our living situation, I have been thinking about why I was so triggered the other day. I think I know why.

There are some who interpret scripture in such a way as to say that an abused wife must stay with her husband…that is is G-d’s will for her to do so! The scriptures they use to “justify” this position are not really saying that at all.

It is really frustrating when people take English translations and make dogmas out of them not realizing that there is no precise translation from one language to another. Word for word is impossible and, sometimes, even thought for thought is a real challenge. You have to take so many things into consideration. The author. The audience. The culture. The language. The idioms. The style of writing. The style of expression. How the author likely meant it and how it would have been understood by the reader/listener.

What is even harder is when I run into someone who is unwilling to even hear about these things. They simply want it to say what they want it to say. The idea that they might be wrong is simply not acceptable to them. They do not want their “world” to be shaken. And I can understand that…I truly can. I have had some major paradigm shifts in my own understanding of G-d and the scriptures. And there was a time when my self-confidence, my self-image, was very dependent upon my being “correct”. But sooner or later we need to mature and grow and heal so that we can truly say, “Show me the Truth, L-rd. Show me the Truth!”…even when it is something that is uncomfortable…something I do not like or really want to see.

While these people are annoying, that is not what was so triggering. It was the idea that an abused wife should stay with her husband…that she has no real recourse. That makes the woman (and, potentially, her children) trapped in a situation that will only perpetuate the abuse on to the next generation if it is not stopped. It also has to potential to damage the children’s relationship with, and understanding of, G-d.

Children tend to view G-d in the same way they view their fathers, which is not surprising given that G-d presents Himself as a “Father”, even though G-d actually has no gender or has even both. We are made in His image…male and female. When children are abused in the home it tends to cloud their image of G-d. When they are abused in the church, or by church people, or in the “name of G-d” (which is a lie, for G-d does not approve of abuse), children tend to get confused about the nature and character of G-d…and understandably so.

I had scriptures used against me by my abusers. My father quoted the commandment to honor my parents to me…while either not understanding what “honor” really means…or understanding and simply being manipulating. I was even an adult at the time! Oh, I have been accused of breaking a few commandments. I have had spirituality used against me by church leaders. And I have had spirituality used in very healing ways.

But back to being triggered. I think it was the idea of the woman being trapped…no way out…no recourse…no support. Now way to turn…no where to run. When someone tells me that, it is very difficult to not view that person as either an abuser currently, or a non-abuser who would turn a deaf ear and blind eye, or a potential future abuser. You see, this kind of belief gives the husband a kind of power that I do not believe G-d ever intended in His word. And we know what a lot of power can do to some people. I shudder to think of it.

I believe that the triggering is a form of emotional flashback. I was thrown back, in essence, to the time when I felt trapped…whether as a child or an adult…to a time when I felt helpless and hopeless. Thankfully, that is no longer my life, but I sure can get triggered and thrown back into that emotional state.

h1

Curve Balls in Life…

April 1, 2012

Life is full of surprises. Just when I think I am on a somewhat even keel…something happens to remind me that my “even keel” is, at times, rather precarious. Want an example? I could give many, but I will give one from tonight.

I am still working through my mother’s death and all the weirdness surrounding it and my whole life. Still being partially amnesic adds an interesting element to the mix.  I was not close to my mother, so her death does not hold the sting of losing something I had. Rather, it is about losing the opportunity to ever have it…in this life. I will never be close to her. There will never be reconciliation…in this life. We won’t hug…

I thought I was doing pretty much OK…getting back to some kind of even keel…when I saw a movie scene tonight that triggered a crying jag. Yeah…I am still affected by it. Can’t really help that. It was of a mother and son reconciling. I had seen this movie several times before, but this is the first time since word of her death.

(OK…gonna ramble a bit here.)

And speaking of her death…not only did my father not notify us, he did not notify anyone in her family either. The only obituary I could find did not list any next of kin…not even my father…who is already remarried. I wish I could find a wedding date, but the state they live in holds those kinds of record private. Only one year and 3 months ago she died and he is remarried. Like father like son? Family legacy? I don’t know. What can you say about generational abuse? It keeps on passing down. I am doing my darndest to make sure it stops in my generation. I really don’t know how successful I was at that. Perhaps that is one of the blessings of amnesia.

Anyway…just needed to get some thoughts out here tonight. I am still processing. I will be for a long time. And I am working on forgiveness. I refuse to lock myself in a prison of the heart by holding a grudge. Just not going there. I choose to walk in freedom and my heavenly Abba helps me to do that. I sure could not do it on my own. Nope. No way.

h1

Living Life in the Face of Nastiness…

March 30, 2012

There are people in life who are simply nasty. They are mean, disrespectful and really don’t care how what they do affects others. When confronted with such people, we have choices to make. We can either react to them, wherein we lose ourselves by allowing them to control our lives and determine how we will live. Or, we can respond to them, wherein we maintain our own autonomy and integrity and choose how we shall live. I prefer the latter. That is my choice.

When I am confronted by nasty negative people I choose to remember that I, too, have had my “moments” of being nasty or ugly. It may not have been intentional. I may not have even been aware of how I was coming across. Or, I may have realized it as it was happening, but did not know how to “fix” it. Or maybe there was no fix…the damage was already done. Any way you look at it, I have had a negative impact on others at times in my life. So, I believe it is worthwhile to remain humble toward others, recognizing that I am certainly not perfect, either!

I also try to remember that everyone is the way they are for a reason. For good or bad, we have all had negative and positive experiences in life that have helped to shape us into what we are today. Sometimes, the balance between positive and negative was fairly even overall. But for some of us, one heavily outweighed the other.

For those whose positive experiences heavily outweighed the negative it can be difficult to understand those of who whose lives were the opposite. We may fumble where they do not. We may react to things that do not faze them one bit. I think it is good when each person can believe another’s story and try to imagine living in that reality. It can help us to be more empathetic toward others.

For those of us who weigh heavily on the negative, and some even in the extreme, it can be difficult to imagine life without that. We see the way others live and struggle to comprehend how they can do that. It just isn’t even on our radar.

Thankfully, though, there can be some good experiences even in the midst of craziness and evil, that give us some positive skills for life. For me, knowing my Creator made a HUGE difference. It is part of what helped to shape me and, I think, to temper how the abuse affected me.

I still deal with the physical effects of trauma brain and I can still experience flashbacks that are part of PTSD and getting  triggered.  However, I have learned over the years how to cope and work around the aftereffects. I know what I can do and what I cannot do and I no longer feel guilt or shame over what I cannot do…even when others do not understand. It is frustrating at times when people look less favorably upon me for what I cannot do. They cannot comprehend how even the simplest of things can be overwhelming at times. But I have learned to live with that and simply accept that there are things they simply do not know and, even if they did, might not be able to understand.

Life is good…even when it is hard. I am OK with that. My heavenly Abba/Father/true Daddy walks with me. So does my Messiah…Yeshua. Their Ruach/Spirit lives within me and that strengthens and comforts me…especially when life is hard.

I refuse to give up. I refuse to hold grudges. I refuse to not forgive. I choose to walk in freedom with my head held high…even when I am shaking inside.

h1

Keeping Up With Life…

March 28, 2011

We have run into obstacle after obstacle in trying to get the house to a livable condition. Yet, every time something comes up Yahweh supplies the answer. The provision comes. The fix comes. The help comes. Sometimes from the most unexpected places.

Life happens and G-d provides. I just keep walking through it. Some days are fairly smooth for me. Some days…like right now…I feel as if I can hardly even concentrate enough to write this post. Yet…I just keep plugging along. In fact, that is how I have gotten through many years of my life…just persistent plugging along…taking it one day at a time…and even one breath at a time.

Yahweh is good. He kept me alive…kept me going. He did not let me give up. He did not let me take my life. He did not let me go in psych ward. He helped me watch over my children. He strengthened me and helped me to grow. He protected me in SO many ways!

Why? Why did He do that? Is it because I am someone special? I really don’t think so…certainly no more than anyone else. Maybe it is because I so much weaker than many others. Perhaps I would not have survived a psych ward…or a suicide attempt. I know others have gone through things that I really do not think I would have made it through.

Or…perhaps my children would not have survived if I was not there on some level for them. I don’t know. I do know, though, that my children were a very strong motivation for me to stick around. I wanted to protect them in any way I could.

I can speculate all I want as to why I have had to experience some really bad things…and yet been delivered/protected from others. I only know that He is faithful…faithful to get me through it and faithful to bless me in it. There are those moments in time when He touched me so deeply that I thought I could barely survive that! From darkness to glory He has been there for me and with me. He is why I live and breathe.

So…now I am trying to keep up with life. That means not keeping up with everything I would like to…but that is OK. It is not that some things and people are less important…it is simply a lack of time and energy.

I am becoming stronger and finding ways to find some more balance in my life. Right now…I am still juggling some things. I am learning to be true to who I am created to be…learning to figure out what to juggle and what to simply let go of. I don’t know about others…but that is no easy task for me. It can be downright challenging.

All of my life, I was to subordinate to others…to put their needs first. Even after all these years…I am STILL learning how to pick and choose when to put myself first. I am also still learning when those times are. I do not want to be selfish…always putting me first. I just want to take good care of myself. It is better to do a few things well than to do many things shoddily.

 

h1

Go Slow?…

January 25, 2011

I came here to write about going slow…or not. Lo and behold, Paul left a comment on a previous post about that very thing!

In the post, I mentioned all the things on my plate…all the things that I am trying to do and that contribute to my feeling overwhelmed. One of those things is putting my artwork up on my art blog. I mean…hey…it was what…last July(?) that I did the Webinar. It is about time I finish getting them up. Of course, it is not that I have been slacking. I have not had access to my laptop or my photo software for several months. So, now is “catch-up” time.

My goal is within a month. However, this is very challenging. Some of it is the practical stuff of prepping things for upload. Although, thankfully, I did get a lot of that done before I lost the use of my laptop. But there is more to it than that.

Each piece I upload, I am reviewing. I am, on some level, revisiting the piece…what it was about…the reason I did it…what I hoped to accomplish. And yes, sometimes I revisit the pain. Oh, it may not even be conscious. Sometimes it manifests as just an “unsettled feeling”.

There is a lot that I have had to “put aside” for the last few years because of our living situation. I have had to keep on doing life with unresolved pain inside. I have been told that I am “shut down” inside…and I believe that to be the case. But when I look at my art…it is as if I am “unshutting” down. Between the art and the potential move…which may actually happen within a month (we are not sure, yet)…there is, I think, the beginning of an awakening.

I don’t know what the move will bring, but there is a lot of potential for stuffed things…and a shut down system…to start popping up…and out. The last thing I dealt with before moving here…or actually as I was moving here and immediately afterward…was all the junk that KB and her client wrought in my life. Yeah…the KB who is, hopefully, getting her license permanently revoked…forever…and ever…and ever!

Some of this art work deals with her. Or with another therapist I did some online/phone work with around the same time. And then there is the therapist I tried to get help from after we moved here. Ugh! All three are in some of my artwork. With two of them…KB and RM…it was all bad. With one…JM…it was a mix. JM at least gave me my art back by telling me how to do it on my PC. For that I am grateful…even though he caused a lot of disruption in my system with his arrogance.

So…on the one hand, I need to give myself the time to upload the pieces without being overly affected. On the other hand, I really want to finish getting them up…and rearranged into date order. I will probably always be affected…at least on some level. I guess the question is…are the effects manageable? Can I work with them…and through them?

I have always been a fighter. I hate to quit anything…although I have learned to do so. At this point, I guess I will just keep plugging along as best I can. And…heaven forbid…if I need to…I will slow down. I do take breaks when I need to…which is, at least, a good thing.

%d bloggers like this: