Archive for the ‘PTSS’ Category

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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

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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.

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Triggers and Blow-ups and Talking About Things

March 26, 2010

We had a blow up at our home this morning. It was nobody’s fault and both of our faults. It was scary for me…as major disagreements typically are. Thankfully, we don’t have them very often. In fact, you could almost say they are rare, even with the increase due to our living situation. It is pretty amazing…truly a G-d thing.

BUT…back to this morning. Even though I KNOW that he is totally committed and would never leave…the fear hits when he walks out the door. Is he going outside to work on something? Or is he going to leave? Mind you…he has never left…but the fear still comes up.

I prayed a lot this morning…for wisdom…to be changed…to understand…for us. The whole thing felt overwhelming and I felt helpless…and maybe even a bit of hopelessness started to creep in there, too. The good thing is that we were able to have a good talk later. We have very little privacy which means that we cannot typically get things out in a timely manner. So things build up. That does not help.

Hopefully, our living situation will change within the next few months…at least before the next winter. That will help a LOT…but it won’t solve everything. It will give us privacy to talk. Privacy for me to work more on my healing. Privacy for us to work more on being a husband and wife. (That brings up a lot of mixed emotions…but more about that in another post.) It will be easier on our son, too…and just all the way around.

Everyone who knows our situation has told me that there is NO way they could have done it.  Well…we can’t, either. As I said…it is a G-d thing. It is only with the grace and mercy of Yahweh who gets us through that we are able to do it.

Anyway…I was able to share how I had been triggered in a huge way yesterday. He knew about the previous one, but not this one. It is good that he knows…that he is able to understand…at least somewhat. The fact that I could even talk about it so soon is a miracle. I guess it shows that I am farther along than I thought.

I am definitely better today. It is good that I was able to explain how and why I got triggered and why it is next to impossible to talk about when it happens. It is really difficult to share when I feel as if I am in a lose/lose…not that he makes it so…but that is how I hear it…how I experience it.

So many times, he can say something and I hear it totally differently than he meant it. And that goes both ways. Although he is not a ritual abuse survivor…he does have his own stuff. His father was abusive and his parents eventually divorced.  My parents stayed together and both were perpetrators. So much for family stability!

Triggers can happen in so many ways…like the way I start to feel like a small child when I get really sick or if I am physically hurt. I am there. I don’t lose continuity, but I am emotionally oftentimes like a child who is struggling to behave like an adult. Which brings me to another part of our living situation. I have to hide that I am triggered. There is no safe place to just emote and let it out. So I struggle not only with being triggered, but also with feeling like I have to hide it. This, too, we talked about this morning. It does not change anything…but it is good to at least talk about it.

In spite of the rough start…today was a good day.

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Being Triggered and Shame

March 24, 2010

I hate being triggered, especially when I feel shamed. I have not really felt shamed for a long time, but I sure felt it tonight. Oh, it wasn’t intentional. I know it wasn’t…but that does not change the way I felt…or my struggle. I ended up flashing back right into the old pain…as if I’d never left. It raised all kinds of fears that I had to fight back down…but the biggest thing was the shame.

I felt as if all the old systems were back in place. It was like being in a double bind…lose/lose…no way to win. It sends me reeling and all sorts of other programming gets triggered right along with it. This makes two very significant triggerings within about a month. Unfortunately, I am not in a position to be able to discuss it with the one who did the triggering…not yet at least. It is really hard because I know he did not mean it. I know he loves me very much and would never want to hurt me.

Maybe I will come back to this. For now…I just wanted to get it out.

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The Incest Survivors’ Aftereffects Checklist by E. Sue Blume

November 3, 2009

I just found a post that contained information for incest survivors.  It is called:

The Incest Survivors’ Aftereffects Checklist, by E. Sue Blume.  I read it at The Survivor Manual, which is run by the Angela Shelton Foundation.

I highly recommend checking it out. I know there were things on that list that hit home for me, even though quite a few did not. Some were things that no longer apply. It is nice to know that I have had some healing!

As Blume points out…you have to use information carefully. I know that it can be dangerous to assume abuse due to symptoms. Some symptoms can come from other causes. However, symptoms can be an indicator of something being wrong and help us to become more aware of what the truth might really be. They can cause us to become more vigilant and able to see things that we might have been missing previously.

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