I can bleed as well as anyone…

IS098S718But I need someone to help me sleep. [i] I don’t know why I chose this as the title but this is what spoke to me. You see I can bleed or hurt as well as anyone I know. But it is that quiet of sleep, that place of peace inside of me,  that I can’t find on my own all the time when those traumas are revisited by something that happens in the present.

This is what PTSD is for me. You can throw me into the trauma and I can survive because then the adrenaline of “fight or flight,” is triggered. But it’s afterwards when I’m there all alone that the disorder takes place. It’s so easy for me to be able to articulate it  in reference to the abuse that I received. A couple of friends of mine said the things below to me this morning in e-mails.

dad with emil“My dad used to say “I brought you into this world I can take you out.””

My mind kept repeating what my dad used to say..”don’t let me knock you into next week.”

When I read those e-mails it was familiar territory for me. I was talking with my brother a couple weeks ago and we were talking about it the language that was used to intimidate us or to get across whatever other motivation my father had in saying those words. Because when I was growing up it was totally appropriate to see displays of physical violence against boys.

Angry boyI have a friend whose nephew just came back from the war. She was talking about how he was struggling with those things that trigger him. What I’m starting to think is that not all triggers for people with PTSD in the military started in the war. Maybe they just found something that they could focus that energy on as far as creating their emotional problems.

IMG_3283copy_zps09c845d6What the leprechaun and I talk about quite a bit is the angst, anxiety, and fear that permeates the culture. I was sitting with the Fanatic yesterday outside Peets and I was doing my anecdotal sociological/psychological field work. Watching people as they walk by I noticed that virtually no one smiles, almost no one looks at you, and if they do look at you it’s usually a furtive, minimal eye contact look.

So maybe it is that as a culture we suffer from PTSD. Maybe the trauma isn’t as “great” as some of us have suffered through. But isn’t any fear of violence a traumatic experience?

100_1617I was doing a lot of reading the other day and came across an article where some PhD’s were saying that putting the person back in front of the events that created the trauma was helpful. I remember doing gestalt therapy when I first got sober. It was helpful because I was able to talk to someone who at the time scared the heck out of me.  If you’re interested I left the quote that caught my attention and the link to the article.[ii]

I think there is something to be said for this methodology of assisting people to get through the pain of the trauma within hopefully doesn’t allow the fear to dominate their life anymore.

1317985706imT24JOh, by the way, those two quotes of threatened violence I put in there earlier, those were both directed at two women friends of mine when they were little girls. If fathers will threaten their daughters with physical violence or death, no wonder were all walking around in shock and PTSD.

[i] Counting Crows. Mrs. Potter’s Lullaby  [ii]”prolonged exposure therapy (PE), in which patients approach — in both imaginary and real-life settings — situations, places, and people they have been avoiding.”The article’s link, not the journal report ‘s link is,  http://psychcentral.com/news/2013/04/15/effective-therapies-for-ptsd-underutilized/53764.html


It is better to seek forgiveness than it is permission.


12 thoughts on “I can bleed as well as anyone…

  1. There’s a wall that I pass everyday going to work. It’s barely noticeable, but it holds memories for me. I used to be shoved against it by a bigger kid, and verbally bashed and smacked while this kid drove a knee into me me, holding me against it. Now sometimes I’ll look over at it when driving by, and think, I’m bigger now, and that wall is smaller than I am. And I feel better.

      • Once, I took my best friend over there with me and showed her, and told her the story. She promised me that if she would have been in my life then, she’d have kicked some booty taking up for me. Hey, whatever it takes…I didn’t ask for the circumstances I faced, but by golly I’ll do what is in my power to heal.

  2. Hi shoe… this may be the first time I’ve commented, and if so, I apologize — I should have before now.
    1) You have great taste in music. Depressives usually do relate to great lyrical music.
    2) Your posts are insightful and always familiar. I have lived with depression my entire adult life, and sometimes it’s just good to know that my experience is not isolated — that other people are surviving. I wish you well on your journey, and hope that you have more good days than bad.

  3. Well, Anyone who can post a pic like yours is just crazy enough for me to be drawn too. I read your stuff too. Thanks for the nice words. I think that Counting Crows song could be the topic for a dissertation. Thanks for connecting. I appreciate being heard and hope you feel something when you read the words that are put down on “paper.”

  4. When I’d do something to make my dad angry, he’d usually call me a bitch and then he’d scream “drop dead for all I care.” I appreciate that your thoughts that traumatic experiences may stem earlier than traumatic experiences that seem more “obvious.” It’s amazing how resilient the human spirit is. People go through varying degrees of crazy shit all the time, even as children, and many find the courage to make it out stronger than ever (eventually).

    • I kept thinking ‘eventually’ after reading your comment, then somehow my mind turned it into ‘uneventfully’. Kind of tickled me how I got better so gradually that I almost did not notice it happening.

      • Lucy,
        Psychic change is subtle, it takes time. I think that is what DH Lawrence talks about in his poem “The Healing.” It is the first post of this blog if you want to read it. Thanks and i love your site.

    • Thank you so much for saying that. We all have those deep seated emotional conflicts that we need to work through or out. Ggod is amazing in that we get led where we need to go. Love your artwork and anyone who is friends with my favorite OCD lady, 메간, is okay by me. Tell her to change her flower back to the orange dahila though.That new white things not as memorable Maybe she will listen to you.

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