Friday, January 3, 2014

Confessions of Thriving Still

I have done in the few days that have passed since I posted about my Post Traumatic Stress event on New Year's Eve Day.

I wanted to write a short follow up because my goal is to educate others who do not suffer from such a crippling disorder and those who have not survived unspeakable violations.

To those who have survived and do suffer I want to offer up the idea that you are not alone in your suffering and surviving. That what you go through is valid and not outside of the norm.

Since the last major episode, I have actively battled depression. I do this by forcing myself to get up and get dressed. I make myself do productive things like write. I have written the next installment for Agora and an article for a anthology on race. I have made some phone calls and done some work in my home office, electronically filing things and cleaning up other things.

I have done some research on issues that were outstanding and allowed myself one nap per day. These naps are usually really long and leave me not really feeling rested.

This morning I made myself get up, take a shower, wash my hair and get dressed. These simple things often can seem like they required the energy and determination climbing Mount Everest would. I finished my article and submitted it to the editor. When I was tired of writing I would get up and put laundry in the washer or dryer or fold some clothes. I would clean a bathroom and straighten my bedroom or the living room. Anything to keep my body busy and my mind occupies.

Last night, my huasband came downstairs where the television was on and I was sitting. He brought me some sleeping medication and asked me to come to bed which I did. After crawling into bed he began to slowly stroke my hip and upper thigh while I tried to loose myself in a game on my Kindle. As his loving ministrations continued, bile rose up in my throat corresponding with my growing arousal. Irritated I had to ask him to stop and then felt bad.

Normally I love sex and in this place of post PTSD episode, sexual arousal is hard to separate from violation. The thought of intercourse and intimacy makes me physically sick to my stomach. My body and my head are not on the same page anymore and I am frustrated by this.

All acts of love and pleasure are of the god/desses and I am disturbed with myself that I am allowing past violations to interfere with my enjoyment here and now. I feel bad that I have denied a man I love his own pleasure and eventually this thinking will overwhelm me altogether and it is everything I can do not to end up throwing up in the bathroom.

Eventually, Tony and I settle our miscommunication and I play my game until I am overcome by exhaustion. I can barely set it down before sleep comes upon me, further stress and flash backs kept at bay by the medication Tony provided me.

I will continue to medicate before bed for another week or two depending on how quickly I am able to recover. I will give myself lots of latitude to be "off." I will attempt to self care as best I know how. It is still success if I continue in the direction of recovery. Failure only comes when you sit down and give up.

So don't sit down. Don't give up. Keep moving. You can do it. 

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