Today, I experienced on of the most amazing things ever. For five seconds I didn’t exist to the world. Its like my feet left the ground, all I could feel was my hula hoop hit each hip and the music blaring through the earphones just carried me away. For five seconds in my entire life, I finally got to be completely alone, out of my head, without anyone else helping me.
I finally saw myself smiling and having fun just leaving the world.
I’m not perfect, that’s OK with me. I’m quite, belligerent, overwhelming, and emotional. I’m proud of myself. Where I came from, where I am going. I have never been PROUD of myself for accomplishing absolutely nothing. I accomplished a spark of me not being afraid anymore.
I don’t care that it was just for five seconds. I did it. I’m becoming whole again.
A few months ago I was re-diagnosed with a complex PTSD. In its essence it is quite similar to Borderline Personality Disorder but, extremely different. PTSD is often associated with soldiers back from war, it is not just a condition that affects those individuals. There are many of us who have experienced much trauma in our lives, this is a serious condition that need medical attention.
Lets begin, what is Complex PTSD?
Also, known as C-PTSD this condition is a result of long term exposure to social or interpersonal trauma. Examples; Long-Lasting, Chronic or Repeating trauma such as, childhood sexual and/or physical abuse, domestic violence, or captivity.
The symptoms of C-PTSD are as follows:
- Emotion Regulation Problems
People with Complex PTSD experience difficulties managing their emotions. They may experience severe depression, thoughts of suicide, or have difficulties controlling their anger.
- Changes in Consciousness
Following exposure to a chronic traumatic event, a person may repress memories of the traumatic event, experience flashbacks, or experience dissociation.
- Changes in How a Person Views Themselves
Symptoms in this category include feelings of helplessness, shame, guilt, or feeling detached and different from others.
- Changes in How the Victim Views the Perpetrator
A person with Complex PTSD may feel like he has no power over a perpetrator (the perpetrator has complete power in a relationship). In Complex PTSD, people might also become preoccupied with their relationship with a perpetrator (for example, constant thoughts of wanting revenge).
- Changes in Personal Relationships
These symptoms include problems with relationships, such as isolating oneself or being distrusting of others.
- Changes in How One Views the World
People exposed to chronic or repeated traumatic events may also lose faith in humanity or have a sense of hopelessness about the future.
There are many great resources for family members and people that are struggling with C-PTSD to use. First thing, my over view of C-PTSD is very vague there are more elaborate ones online, I will post useful links at the bottom of this post.
We all have those moments, thoughts, feelings, that make us scared and want to run away. I never try to let those feelings creep to far into my mind because, I will run away. I always do run away.
Recently, I had many of these feelings. I never really gave myself the time of day to deal with a lot of things that have happened to me. I just tried to keep them bottled deep inside a little unknown place in my mind, my containment box. I decided to open it one night and out came the monsters and demons of the past.
My mother, who I do not give enough credit to, pointed it out. I am not in this alone. What this person put me through, yes, did happen to ME, but it didn’t just affect me, it affected my whole family. We will get through this together. I do not have to stand alone, I will be armed with the love of my family, the bravery of numbers.
I will be ok. This was not my fault.
I always wonder what would have happened if I wouldn’t have done DBT. A question no one should ever even think of asking themselves. Why, why would anyone want to know how horrible their life could have been!?
I always wonder, that curiosity will always and forever be in the back of my mind. This program, no matter who you are is a vey spiritual, life changing experience. Without it, where would I be?
The light at the end of the tunnel is visible finally but, it’s still a long way off. I have so many emotions and fears swimming deep inside me still. But, it’s time to stare them in the face and let them go.
I feel like I don’t post a whole lot in the present of what I am dealing with because, I am still processing my past. There are so many things I have done I don’t want to be national secretes anymore. But, I am slowly letting to. I am slowly opening up to being an emotion emitting person. I finally feel as if I can relate to humans on a very intimate level now because, I’m not afraid.
My light is just down the tunnel, my light will always guide me, until that day… I won’t need the light because my world will be bright. My world will have color and shades. No more black and white, no more monotone, I will be a colorful strong woman. It’s so close. I have to keep following that little light of mine.
I used to argue about the diagnosis on hand, the bipolar, the borderline, the PTSD, and anything else they used to lump on top of me, to define my personality. Staring at them through teared eyes, and misty lashes, I would express my confusion of every label thrown my way. Deep breath, and on to life living with the labels presented, making sure I lived up to every standard, rule or description they gave me. Little did I know I was dealing with a lot less than what they had originally throw my way.
I sat down in the doctors office and I stared at her. I looked deep into her eyes and thought out loud. “I want to take more tests.” She pushed her white hair behind her ears and agreed with me and told me how. I was determined to figure out just exactly what deep dark despairing sickness I really had.
The tests were long, the day I took them was bad timing. Everything was off the charts, instead of showing progress I showed extreme symptoms. I could see it in her eyes as she was reading the results to me, there was nothing, absolutely nothing to worry about. She rambled on for minutes and minutes, I fiddled with my thumbs. She suggested taking an ink blot test, I kenw it then I was crazy. Ink blot tests, in movies, were for the clinically insane, I felt done for.
I can remember sitting in the chair next to the intern that was in the office at the time, she would hand me the card, I would tell her what I saw. In the past I would have been a smart ass about the whole situation but, instead, I politely spoke what was on the card and handed them back.
A few weeks went by and I was ready to hear the results. I sat in my normal recliner as my doctor sat down with her dog, pushed back her white hair, and looked at me with the comforting smile she has. I was ready for this moment in my life. She asked me a bunch of questions and by the end of that she said it looked more like a Complex PTSD than borderline. I felt a breath of hot air escape my lips and a smile creep across my face.
I wasn’t crazy, It wasn’t my fault or my moms fault, or anyone’s fault. It was HIS fault.
The symptoms were very much like borderline but, I could be fixed, I could be healed, I had a future out of this deep dark mind of mine. It was such a relief.
From that day forward I decided to live a label free life, who knows I might be bipolar, I might have PTSD, I might even have some kind of weird disorder I dont know about. That isn’t for me to worry about, what I am supposed to worry about are my actions, good or bad I take responsibility. I dont blame my mental illness anymore.
The point of the matter is, Don’t live in this labeled alternate reality that psychology has given you. Its a great science I wish to become a part of but, the labels in which you are given are not for you to live by, they are for doctors to learn how to treat you.
With that the complex idea’s of my brain are coming to a short end today. I would like to remind my readers this blog isn’t for pity, it isn’t for someone to read to gossip about. It’s a real story, of a real girl, dealing with some real stuff. And not only that, its a safe haven for others who may struggle to be able to tell a story through their own words so people can understand we are human too. We may have labels, we don’t live by them. We may have problems, We can deal with them.
This is a creative outlet for someone who wants their stories out of them, to share with the world. To potentially change another persons life. But, I see how it can be misconstrued as an attention seeking blog. Please read respectfully, If you wish not to know about the struggles of mental illness, please kindly exit the page and continue with this blog no further. I promote on Facebook for the friends of mine that I know are dealing with similar things. Please, Please, respect this blog.
I look around me today, I still see the walls formed years ago. I can deal with things easier but, when do I tear down my walls? When can I take each brick out and explain to someone, this brick represents this pain,and this brick represents this mistrust.
The memories of each brick stare at me and taunt me from within, they feel they are still winning. They feel like they are still dominating my life. I try to laugh in their face and let them know they have not won but, they don’t listen.
These memories, this pain, I want it out of me. I want it out so bad I could puke. The abuse, the pain, the world I carry on my shoulders is just sickening. I have had it for 12 years locked up deep inside. The antsy pants inside me wants it all out at once, but I know better than to do that. But, i wish it could be expelled from my body.
I want a life where I can settle down and have a child, a husband, a house, and a grin. The happiness that I want and have dreamed about since I was a little girl. I never envisioned my life turning out like this. I am currently content. But, never once did I realize I would be dropped out of school, doing therapy, working fourty hours a week, trying to keep my head on straight.
I step on peoples toes, I get in their business. I am human, but yet I feel less than human. I still feel the size of a pea to a lot of people. People that degrade my human status because I am in therapy, trying to get better. But, I guess… I am tearing down my walls… I am bettering my mind, body, and soul.
Its painful… But worth it.
I know that everyone has pain, and mine is no greater than anyone else’s that has experienced pain or abuse. In fact, people may look at my life and think I have it made. I look at theirs and think the same thing. But, this is how I FEEL.
I look back at the last year with a sigh of relief. There have been the ups and downs of mental illness, and ups and downs of happiness. I look around my life today and see how much happier I am as a person.
Laughter is allowed even if its not real, it makes me feel happy. Deep breathing is used, even outside of meditation. A half smile. Distraction. Weighing Pros. Weighing Cons.
Sounds like a lot of therapy mumbo jumbo to everyone else. But, to me it has become my life, it has become who and what I am all about. Therapy and DBT has saved and enriched my mess of a life. I look back at over a year ago when I sat in that bath tub and ripped apart my body, not only are my psychical scars faded, so are my emotional scars.
I can take a look around at all my friends and thank them for staying with me every step of this journey into a sane sober and happy life.
I am the kind of person that would like to give all my thanks to the doctors and therapists I have seen over the last year, but unfortunately for them. I can only thank myself for the progress I have made, the insights I have now seen. I dig deep within myself and I can smile and know, tomorrow is a new day. Tomorrow is ALWAYS a new day.
Please keep reading this blog for the updates will now come sooner and easier for me. I will dig deep within and let my story finish flowing. Just know.. There is peace.