So; life’s like a river. Things passes by, and we move on

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I am leaving therapy.

It has been some years. Getting ready to let go of that helping hand, is a long process. I think I decided that the time had come after summer vacation. However, I was not in a very enjoyable mood just then, returning to work, feeling the pain everywhere, from being so busy. But it was really just a bad mood. No depressions, nothing not normal about it.

So last week we decided to end treatment, or talks, as it has been lately. I have two more appointments, one in November and one just before Christmas, I think I will try to change that to after Christmas. Christmas is never a good time for me, too much family, to many memories and feelings.

I’ll get back to more thoughts on this later.

So; life’s like a river. Things passes by, and we move on

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#thatfeeling

Green Heart (And the Green Grass Grows All Aro...

Green Heart (CarbonNYC)


Ok, I sat out this week too with high ambitions. So many thing are happening just now, so I can’t seem to get to where I want to be. That must be ok for now.

The only important thing, is that my daughter is having a complicated heart procedure, it takes many hours, and many doctors, and is really just overwhelming. I am sure she will be ok, afterwards, we just have to believe that. Even though she wasn’t after last time they tried. Now she has been off from work, and hardly studied this last year. Waiting. All of us.

We are leaving tomorrow night, and she will have the operation on Tuesday. It is in another city, 5 hours drive from here.

A real #thatfeeling downer. Hopefully, on Tuesday evening, it will be different.

Did someone sing you lullabies?

Slumber Cat Overhead

Now I only sing for my cat, she doesn’ even try to listen…(Photo credit: Taekwonweirdo)


I hope so. I always sang a scary one for my girls, they fell asleep with a giggle.
Can’t remember anyone singing for me.

Lullabye

Rest your drowsy cheek,
My girl, quiet on my
Prickling arm. Dream
Your dream of lapping
Waters cresting on this
Human form. The tides
Are breathing, you and
I, in your small clench
And my tight heart.
Tonight we fill the
Grave with stones and
Slumber in the summer’s
Dew. And all I make
Are promises which can
Not come true. I will
Not give you away, my
Girl, I will never make
You cry, nor morning
Find us far apart, nor
This hand gone away
From you.

Mike Finley

Sleepless

sleep

sleep (Photo credit: Sean MacEntee)

I hate not sleeping well. Some nights, when I go to bed, I just can’t sleep. Other nights I wake up having flashback, or spend time awake, in the middle of the night, having flashbacks. Or more seldom, I wake up at three thirty, and fall asleep again just half an hour before the alarm wakes me. Yippee…

It happens from time to time. Insomnia.

If I can’t get to sleep at night, it is usually because I absolutely cannot miss the alarm next morning. If I have a plane to catch. An important meeting. Or if something terrible has happened, but that is out of the ordinary.

Flashbacks have occurred more seldom during the last months, a year ago, it would happen several times every week. I’d get so tired, after several troublesome nights in a row, that absolutely nothing would make sense. Day or night…

My sleep problems are much better, but so annoying, when it happens. Have you noticed that thoughts during nighttime are so different that the ones you have during the day? I can’t even blame the darkness…

Right now I try to stop taking meds to sleep, I’ve taken pills to go to sleep, and pills to stay asleep, and not have flashbacks.

From time to time, I’ve also taken quite heavy painkillers, also getting me sleepy.

Now I try to control pain in meditation, which doesn’t mean that the pain disappears. It only means that I handle it better, I have a way of coping with pain that doesn’t involve medication.

Quite strange, we seem to have (and think we need) pills for everything. And so easy, when you get into it, to just take that little pill, and know, its ok, I will have a quiet night.

I hope I will make it without any meds. Definitely a goal… so now I have cut the doses to half of what I used to take. Summer is coming up, and that is usually a difficult time for me. Too much free time, not enough routine, some wine from time to time. Not good.

So if I get trough summer, like this, I will be very happy!

My granddad collected stamps

English: Statue representing the God Shiva - M...

English: Statue representing the God Shiva – Mauritius Island (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

After the war, when the missionary family came home from Africa, they stayed just for a few years. My mother and her sister went to school in my hometown, and soon my grandparents went abroad again, this time to a church in Swansea, Wales.

I don’t think he ever really recovered from Africa. They were away for so many years because of the war, and he was seriously ill for a long time. They never had a “normal” family life, I believe they must have wanted that, raising two lovely girls, doing gods work (or whatever). They would have wanted to be with family and friends, who I know nothing about.

After returning home once more, he was released from all his clerical duties. He started a very successful stamp collecting business, on behalf of the church. They collected stamps and somebody sold them.

My beautiful frail grandmother had very long grey hair. Very long! She would make her hair into very long braids, which she rolled around her head in circles. I remember touching it, felt magic.

My grandfather used to iron his banknotes. Sometimes I would get one. It felt brand new.

I bought ice cream and got coins back.

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:)

Ideas on healing

A bit strange, that the first person (C-PTSD A way out) to comment on this blog has so many of the same ideas on healing that I have. Thanks Marty:)

I have been in serious trouble for as long as I can remember. Hiding has been my way of coping since I was four, after that came running away, drugs, a short period of forgetting as I got three children, and then cPTSD struck big time. Then studies, drugs, therapy, depressions, work, more studies, more drugs… and so on, really. It has been my whole life. I hope to go into more details, for my own healing sake, later.

But as I wrote in one of the earlier posts, I now find that I have a more solid ground than ever. About a year ago, a friend of mine introduced me to an iPhone App, Deep sleep with Andrew Johnson. We were discussing apps during lunch I think, and she complained about bad sleep. (I would of course never do that… having something like the Berlin wall between my work and family life, and my PTSD issues, kind of a misunderstood idea on how to be successful.)

After downloading the app, and a few more of the same, I thought that this is bullshit. I used to go to bed like seven times every night, feeling restless and sometimes a bit anxious, but I managed to listen to the programme once, put it on play once more, and actually calmed down. So I decided to go with this, for the three weeks he recommends. It worked. I realised that by using my breath, and managing to focus on his lovely scottish accent talking me through every muscle in my body, made me calmer. And sometimes just a small step like that, the feeling that I HAVE CONTROL over something, changed the way I looked upon my whole situation. It said that I CAN DO SOMETHING to change. After so many years going round in circles this was a major step out of a circle.

These apps was an introduction to meditation, something I have always been curious about. I never had the time or took the effort to look it up. It felt too difficult, too strange, and even if I go regularly to the gym, I would never sign up for relax-classes or yoga. Too strange! But now I was curious. I started with “Meditation for dummies” but advanced quite quickly to Jon Kabat-Zinn and “Full catastrophe living” and Mindfulness. Enjoyed both apps, books and YouTube on this subject and it definitely works for me. Now I read everything I can get about Mindfulness…

I am not a premium student… I find that I actually can meditate and focus on my breathing, and after I started to do this regularly, I am much more in control of my feelings. I struggle a bit to find time to sit down and not do anything else, or think about the other things I should have done. But I don’t have the same problems falling asleep at night, and I am calmer. Last week I did a one hour speech at a national conference with 500 people, which usually gets me a bit nervous, at least before I start. This time, as I felt the butterflies invading my whole body, I managed to lower my shoulders, focus, close my eyes, breathe… And it all went away. It must be the most focused speech I have ever given, response was good too. (Afterwards I felt like a worn out washing cloth or something though…)

Being mindful changes the perspective from “I wish I didn’t…” or “If only it was Friday and I was through this hopeless dreadful week”, or “If only I get well, I will start exercising (or something)” to now, right here right now. “If only” doesn’t exist anymore. Sounds a bit weird.

This is the day I have, this minute, this hour. This opportunity.

The panic is still there, but maybe the panic for the PANIC is less intruding. Sometimes it still gets out of hand, and the last time it got really dangerous. But even so, I feel more in control, and I stop to think, instead of rushing into bad choices. I can choose!

Good choices are green, don’t you think?