My battle with PTSD has been a long hard journey, as most are. Switching medicines, trying different forms of therapy, seeing therapists who tell you one thing while another says the opposite, for some like me there are even a few psychiatric hospital stays. But we must take each day as it comes. I have been having a hard time lately on what to do, think or feel anymore. After a few months of no PTSD symptoms a few started to creep back in, by no means am I as bad as before but it is still discouraging. My Psychiatrist said the PTSD could have gone into remission, or it could be symptoms from having severe OCD as well, it is hard to tell which is which. I contemplated if I should even write anymore, I felt so confused and lost. I messaged PTSD chat’s Kate Gillie about what was happening and she said to take “each day as it comes” which inspired me to not only write this post, but about it.
There are days with PTSD you will have good and bad days. For me there seemed to be no in between, but I kept fighting with all I had…But it does get tiring. I know the frustration of thinking every day will be like today which is a great day mentally, then the next it hits you like a ton of bricks. I have been on that roller coaster my whole life, while today might have been a good day I am still sitting on the seat of the roller coaster still strapped in cause I know it will vary. Those with PTSD have come so far as it is…we made it through the trauma and even though we may have scars we are STILL survivors. I have wondered why I made it through so many situations that should have had me buried. But I am thankful I am alive and well today because there are so many people like me that NEED help, to know they are NOT alone, and awareness needs to be made. The past few days I have had intrusive thoughts (unwanted thoughts or images), but not as bad as before because I have tools I have learned in therapy to help me overcome them. I am very stubborn and think what I want to think and do what I want to do, it helps at times but at others it would only hurt me. I have gone into countless therapy sessions with the mindset “This isn’t going to help, I am beyond damaged” and shut out anything that may have been the answer I need to get mental relief. As I had stated in my previous post “Think like a therapist” I still stand by that, every person responds differently when it comes to treatment for PTSD. Don’t give up if one thing isn’t working for you!
I respond best by doing EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy) and by grounding myself by stimulating my senses. Because my days have varied so much lately I decided to take a break from therapy to take some time to give my brain a rest and to reset myself a little. My Husband helps keep me in check at times, when I start to have a panic attack or feel out of control he helps keep me grounded. I tend to worry too much about the past, or the future. Staying focused on the present doesn’t seem so overwhelming when you can just take things a day at a time. There are days when I cry out for help to Family & Friends to just be overlooked, it is a horrible feeling when you feel like you are screaming and nobody hears you. I have been trying to overcome a lot of anger lately, I do feel alone very often. I am a pretty introverted person and don’t often ask for help, but there are days I need someone to ask me if I am okay. I by no means want sympathy, I just want Family and friends to stand by me and be there for me. Someone once told me during a psychiatric stay “PTSD is a lonely disorder” I just think people fear what they don’t know. PTSD can take a heavy toll on relationships. It can be hard for people to understand your behavior, why you are less affectionate and more volatile. They may feel like they are walking on eggshells or living with a stranger. That is why PTSD awareness matters.
As much as I want to give up as my psychiatrist loads me back up on every medicine I was off of just months ago. I somehow find the strength to make it through another day. Your life has a purpose, your story is important, your voice matters, live every day like it is your last. Don’t be discouraged if today is a “bad” day in your battle with PTSD, cause through it all you are STILL battling and tomorrow can be very different. Stay Strong..