Improving?

Sunshine Coast

More of this please?? (Photo credit: semuthutan)


Today I have answered e-mails like if I was something extra-terrestrial… Though, I did get to work an hour and a half late.

I can’t seem to get into the habit of getting up at six, like I used to.  However, that means that I am sleeping well!

How long will it take to get into the habit of work again? I read, last year I think, that if you’ve been away for four weeks, it will take just as long (four weeks) to get into the routines again. That’s quite long… But maybe true!

This is my second week back, and I must admit, last week I had so many things to check online before I could get any of my items in my to-do done. I thought like this: If I answer this e-mail, than she will answer me back and maybe have another question for me, so I will have to write yet another e-mail…

Seriously, I really like my job. I just miss 32 degrees, sunshine and lazy days.

Yesterday I saw my therapist again. This time of year is usually very difficult for me, and I am happy she will see me every week for a while, at least. I think things have changed since last year though. But maybe as some things improve, others appear. To sum up, it goes like this:

I sleep better, and haven’t had any flashbacks since I came home.
Although struggling, I have done some workout; the kayak is my best friend for the time being.
I have a feeling of coping, instead of chaos. (Crossing fingers that it lasts).
I managed to talk about my husband yesterday; he’s been acting like he’s having PMS or something lately, a real bitch… and I am not sure what it is, or what to do, so it worries me.
I find it difficult to think “mindful” and meditate, both work and family are a bit overwhelming just now.
I need time for myself. Not sure why that is such a big thing right now, but I really do.
The pain in my neck is really really BAD. I saw my physiotherapist yesterday, it is his fault. He worked at all the muscles in my neck, head and face, which surely has made the back of my head black and blue, my neck feels twice the ordinary size and I have a terrible headache. I hope what he’s at will help, the reason for this is of course my bicycle crash last year.

Today, I am spending some time with the girls, again. Tired.

Bad bad feelings?

English: Toy balloons Русский: Воздушные шарики

Up and away, never to be seen again (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I really hate it, when I get into those «if only» thoughts and regrets. Why is it so hard to accept the past, and be OK with it? Guess that’s the essence of it all. It’s no problem to see that what happened to me was so wrong. I guess I used a few years just accepting that it happened. And a few years trying to find ways out of it.

Sometimes I think I have found it, the way out, and some days it is just lost again. Some days there are things that trigger feelings and memories, which I wish to be gone forever.

Some days I need help to see things in perspective.

I try to meditate, I try to live by all the mindfulness ideas, and know that it helps. But some days are just different.

I wish I could put all of these feelings in a bin bag, tie it up and throw it away. Never to be seen again.

To my:
Anger
Shame
Loss
Sorrow
Regret

Please leave. Now.

Me Me Me!

Mind the gap...

Thin line between hopelessness and ability to heal! (Photo credit: asparagus_hunter)

So many years spent without the ability to think outside the ME-mind! Well, I did take care of my family, I did get an education, I got a job, I have friends. But the egocentric mind, dominated for so many years. And by all means; “ME” is the mind that must heal.

Realizing last post was a genuine recipe for depression (which I definitely had) I need to make a follow up.

So I got to think… I am no longer only inside the “ME”-thing, which I described earlier. As a child, I didn’t know anything else.  Trying to cope with depression, there was never room for anyone else, really.

Like so many others with backgrounds similar to mine, you don’t just have PTSD or c-PTSD. You get depressed, you stop sleeping or sleep too much, you might have anxiety issues, eating disorders, dissociative disorder, OCDs, phobias or other stuff. None of it is very nice… Most need treatment. How hard it must be to point out THIS ONE THING as the reason for all your trouble. Like I have my PTSD. (At least that the way I see it, don’t know if my therapist agrees).

If you get a physical decease, you still have a life to live. It doesn’t have to consume all your thoughts and high wire your brain for years. If you have a mental illness, it IS who and what you are. Sometimes for most of the hours of the day. And night.

For me, realizing this, happened in retrospect. I think at one point, I decided to define myself outside of it. (I probably have decided that several times, like if you decide to diet or stop smoking again and again…) But now I feel rather successful at it.

I think all the time of how I feel, and evaluate my feelings. How do I cope with feeling sad, why am I sad, does it have to be like this? And how can I use the mindful approach and be here right now, and let it go? So many times, I find that after meditating I feel so much better. More focused, positive and with a calm here-and-now feeling. This enables see others, feel beauty, enjoy life, concentrate…

I want to focus on the good feelings (still having some bad ones from time to time), and I want to choose to feel good about me (though sometimes I don’t). It means experiencing all feelings and regard them in a state of not judging them either way. I kind of set myself outside the feeling.

I could go on for some time on this… Probably get back to it!

The depressed universe doesn’t have any room at all for any other than ME. The million-dollar question is how to get inside that ME and make it help itself, instead of forever lingering in the deep hurt and pain issues.

Have you been trough the same? How did you start to heal?

Sleepless on a Monday night too….

To change physioterapist must be like changing dentist… They find new troublesome and bothering stuff, that you never knew existed.
Tonights sleeplessness has been about PAIN, waking up every hour or so. He is a head/neck-specialist, and got the most sexy overarms I have ever seen. I feel so beaten up… And has exceeded the dose of funny pills. But sleep? Hardly…
Been up since three am…
Getting tired of this! Soon off to work…

How to communicate the content of feelings that has no language?

English: Band-Aid logo designed by Dresser Joh...

Got one for my flashback anyone?(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

If I get burnt on the kitchen stove, I’d go “ouch”. Or some four letter word. Some years back, I wouldn’t, I’d just be silent. My husband is always VERY frustrated when I accidently hurt myself, because I go absolutely quiet. I can’t speak. It is as if all the feelings are going inwards. And he stands there looking at me, without knowing what on earth happened. Where does it hurt? What happened? How?
If I cut myself chopping veggies, he’d see me bleeding, those are the easy ones. But if I get my finger in a squeeze or something else that doesn’t show, I can’t speak. When in pain, I go silent. Whatever kind of pain.

In therapy, this is sort of stupid. How many wants to go to therapy, and talk and talk your guts out? Raise hands please…

Me too. But as soon as it starts to hurt, I go silent.

Am I shy?
It’s not like I can’t talk, in any other situation. I know the words. I talk to lots of people all the time, in several languages, and I am never lost for words. Except in therapy.

Am I embarrassed?
After so long trying in therapy, she knows my story. No, I don’t think I am embarrassed. Nothing was my fault. And I don’t think I have a problem with self-esteem either.

Scared?
Maybe. Sometimes, after the worse flashback-situations, I feel like I am floating around, and need to pinch myself to stay afloat, to stay in the room. Not just float away into those strange fragments of memories. Yes… sometimes scared.

Otherwise talkative and blabbering, when in contact with those flashbacks, language disappears. I sometimes think of them as sets of images, passing in 800 km/hour, round and round inside my head. They blend in a mixture of other impressions, sound, pain, smell. They stay for a while. I can’t breathe.

It’s not like I think there are things left to explore. The whole picture is not that difficult to figure out. The flashbacks haven’t changed much this last year (or something). And they don’t appear as frequently as before, which is very good.

I’d like to figure out the lack of language, the feelings that are not verbal. Why is it like that? (And it is NOT that I don’t want to).

I would like the flashbacks to go away and never haunt me again. In a mindful-kind of way, I’d like to breathe through them. I think that will happen sometime. But I don’t think they will ever have a language.

Anyone can help me here?

To talk or to forget?


I wonder from time to time… And we have also discussed it in therapy. I think her approach has been to talk things through, and then it will be easier to handle, so much easier perhaps, that it is not a problem at all.

But when it gets real heavy again, she wants me to try out specialists in trauma psychology or EMDR.

It is really quite typical, when I talk about something very bad, something I can’t cope with, she must feel that my story is too hard to handle, and wishes for me to get help from somewhere else. The idea of even thinking about talking to someone else, when I am in such a bad state (it’s not often) scares me. So sometimes I wish I didn’t tell. That’s not very dynamic…

It’s very hard for me to talk at all. I am still scared that I am going to need somebody. (I know I need her though). I am afraid that someone else might get to know what I am thinking. Stupid after all these years of therapy… The thought that if I try to explain, and she doesn’t understand, also scares me, because then I won’t be able to make it right. She will have an impression or understanding of something I said, and it’s the wrong one. That doesn’t help me. However, she has helped me through so many things, and I am quite sure that if I hadn’t met her, I would have been far out on drugs, or maybe not even alive at all by now.

And then there’s the thing about all those memories that doesn’t have words. How can I tell? I know I have written about this before, sorry for repeating… but it is important to me. When those memories make me a total nutter at night, stealing my desperately needed hours of sleep, it’s only logic to conclude that they need to be explained. It’s like I don’t know the language…

So how about forgetting?

How about concentrating on the moment, on how to live on right now? Right now I am (at work…) writing about this, I am ok with that, it’s no big deal to make words and meaning coming out of my thoughts, and most of the time I am ok with everything I do. I get through the days; I even think most of them are meaningful and good. Nights are a different story. But concealing the memories into somewhere far away, does that make sense?

How about the mindful approach to this? That would be to be in the flashback, and consistently draw attention to breathing. I am not there yet. After the last heavy flashback incident I had, I have had difficulties meditating. I’ve had to take some steps back, starting again, doing shorter sessions, making even surer that I am safe and being a bit more scared that if I let my mind wander off, it will be right back in flashback-hell again.

Still I know that my mindfulness moments give me more control over my days, I have a busy schedule, but I am never stressed out. Sometimes I have to take important decisions fast, I am ok with that. So I am sure about the mindfulness approach. It’s going to make me better.

However, the blog is “my story, shared”. I haven’t touched the issues with no language, perhaps I never can. It feels awful to write, but good too. I cry sometimes, it makes me concentrate, and hopefully finish some issues. Maybe getting those little pieces together, will help me.

Been humming  Paul Simons “I am a rock” all day. Took the picture of a really nice rock (on an island, get it?) this weekend. Here’s the lyrics:

A winter’s day
In a deep and dark December;
I am alone,
Gazing from my window to the streets below
On a freshly fallen silent shroud of snow.
I am a rock,
I am an island.

I’ve built walls,
A fortress deep and mighty,
That none may penetrate.
I have no need of friendship; friendship causes pain.
It’s laughter and it’s loving I disdain.
I am a rock,
I am an island.

Don’t talk of love,
Well I’ve heard the word before;
It’s sleeping in my memory.
I won’t disturb the slumber of feelings that have died.
If I never loved I never would have cried.
I am a rock,
I am an island.

I have my books
And my poetry to protect me;
I am shielded in my armor,
Hiding in my room, safe within my womb.
I touch no one and no one touches me.
I am a rock,
I am an island.

And a rock feels no pain;
And an island never cries.

Choices

Last two weeks has been a bit crazy. I cried a lot after what happened, I usually don’t cry. I felt as if all my efforts towards healing was in vain, as if I was set back years in time, so I cried some for that too. Sorrow is sometimes good. (Read last post if you don’t know what I am talking about).

But I did not start endless walking in the middle of the night because I couldn’t rest. I did not call trying to get drugs, though I admit having looked in all my secret spots… I told my therapist what happened, instead of keeping it to myself. I decided to do anything I could to get really tired (followed by good sleep), resulting in very long bicycle rides (which is my Passion) :).

I changed a pattern of wrong choices, and after a few days, it felt better. Those good choices made me make some more. It felt good to meditate, even if I need some help from time to time to concentrate. I used guided meditation from one of my apps. I decided to write, and made this blog. Writing about what happened to me has always been something I have wished to do, having an idea that it will help. However trying to do it, has caused me lots of headaches. So many of my memories and flashbacks don’t have words. Sounds, feelings, pictures that I haven’t been able to describe. As a writer, that is quite annoying. But now I have chosen to write.

This horrible flashback/self harm incident happened after a long period where I’d had a feeling that everything was going so much better. I was able to sleep almost without medication, which felt like a real victory. I’ve had sleep disorders for as long as I can remember. However; I cut back on clonazepam, (over a long period of time, so it should have been ok) but now I realize that this was a mistake. This medicine is what makes me stay asleep through the night, it sort of replaces my REM sleep with calm and quiet resting sleep, and keeps my nightmares away. Wishing to be normal, I hate taking it… Now I have increased the dosage a bit again, and haven’t had any serious flashbacks since that serious one.

I think mindfulness has made a difference for me. Maybe the most significant difference. And I am really reluctant to try anything “strange”, being hopeless skeptic to any not mainstream solutions. Actually skeptic to mainstream solutions too:) But this has given me more peace, and a very important way of having more (or some) control over my life.  I am not saying that it will be like this always, because I don’t know.

I went to see my therapist again yesterday. She was so worried after the last session, I remember saying I’m ok, nothings going to happen… Today she told me that my kind of dissociative behavior should not be treated outside of hospital. So I can understand that she was worried and wanted someone to look after me! And I was like “I HAVE to be alone, I won’t talk to anyone, I need to find some peace at home, by myself…”
I admit that I haven’t been focused at work these days, and I feel worn out and tired. I should probably had taken some time off… Whatever… 🙂 It was a good session, I was calm, managed to talk, felt good. Even if she doesn’t give me much hope of ever getting over my sleep disorder or my PTSD. It’s ok. Being able to live with it in a better way than what life’s been like till now, is a huge step forward.

This was long! Sorry:) And to all my followers in just a few day, THANKS:)