Remembering how far I have come when it feels like I can’t go on once more..en

Hi all,

It’s been a little while. A little while of a lot of self work, revelations, further adaptation to triggers, symptoms, sleepless nights..

And just as things were getting ‘good’ life has once more fallen apart in its entirety. I once more find myself in a place whereby I must rebuild it all again, only two years since my trauma. Two painful years of getting to know myself all over again, two painful years of building a lifetime from scratch.

Of course old habits die hard, my initial response to the situation? Distraction. Oh bitter sweet distraction, how I hate to see your ugly face once more. This was my absolute go to when my world turned upside down in 2018. I tried to run so far away from it all to forget it ever existed. To pretend it didn’t. In the hope that maybe then, it really didn’t happen..

Until I realised that distraction didn’t serve me. I could do it all only to be hit with reality shortly after, the same reality every time - it DID happen, life IS different, I AM different, I can’t keep running.

I got myself through my darkest days on my own. I recognise the strength it took me to do that when in reality, I didn’t even want to exist anymore. I don’t really know why I fought to go on but I did. And yet, although I have been through the worst, it feels like I will not get through this..

My strong has run out.
 

ladee

MyPTSD Pro
Your strong hasn't run out. It's a different kind of strong now. The strength of experience of making it thru, on your own, knowing it will change. Baby steps. PTSD is not linear. It feels like we just can't get it sometimes. But that is not true. You got this far and as tired and discouraged as you are, you can and will make the next steps to heal.

It is not defeat, it is just another learning time and it sucks. It really really sucks. But so did all the other things you transcended. That sucked too. And you made it thru.

Give yourself some resting time. I hate PTSD with a passion. But this is the hand we have been dealt. Nothing fair or right about it. But you are among many people who just have to start over. Again.

I'm starting over too. And some days I resent the hell out of it. One more thing that I am powerless over. But I can still put one foot in front of the other. No matter how tired and discouraged I get, I know things are going to change. It always does. Not when I would like for it to, but it does change.

Take your hard earned experiance and take a good look at what you did to get thru to where you are now. That still works. It's ok to be tired. It really is. But don't give up on yourself. You can do this. Sending gentle hugs of understanding if you accept.
 

woodsy1

MyPTSD Pro
Hi. We've not met before. I'm glad to meet you. Sorry for what brings us here though.
It’s been a little while. A little while of a lot of self work, revelations, further adaptation to triggers, symptoms, sleepless nights..
Ugh! I'm glad you made some progress.
And just as things were getting ‘good’ life has once more fallen apart in its entirety.
What happened?
I once more find myself in a place whereby I must rebuild it all again, only two years since my trauma. Two painful years of getting to know myself all over again, two painful years of building a lifetime from scratch.
Is that how long it took before? Do you think it will take 2 years again?

Rebuilding from scratch was the hardest part for me. I just told my T about this yesterday. Starting life over at age 50 with a multitool instead of the standard issue full tool caddy is rough!
Of course old habits die hard, my initial response to the situation? Distraction. Oh bitter sweet distraction, how I hate to see your ugly face once more. This was my absolute go to when my world turned upside down in 2018.
Distraction is a hugely valuable tool. I use it daily.
I tried to run so far away from it all to forget it ever existed. To pretend it didn’t. In the hope that maybe then, it really didn’t happen..

Until I realised that distraction didn’t serve me. I could do it all only to be hit with reality shortly after, the same reality every time - it DID happen, life IS different, I AM different, I can’t keep running.
This was the key for me...realizing everything is different and running into that instead of away from it. Which direction are you pointed right now?
I got myself through my darkest days on my own. I recognise the strength it took me to do that when in reality, I didn’t even want to exist anymore. I don’t really know why I fought to go on but I did.
I call these my white-knuckling it days. I make it through them because I know I can find better days ahead.

You are stronger than you know.
And yet, although I have been through the worst, it feels like I will not get through this..
You will get through this. Isn't that why you are here in the forum? You just need a little outside help. We're here!

You will get through this.
My strong has run out.
Been there. The good thing is that after it runs out, that's not the end. We get power ups. I don't where they come from always.

Last week, I was in a horrible tailspin into the depths of darkness. I was all out of strong. I reached out to some friends. They had me over. They were my power up.

I hope you feel better after having written about it. That tends to help me a lot. I think it helps me own and take power over my affliction.

Chat you soon, eh?
 
Thank you both for taking the time to communicate with me.

Progress definitely has been made and I recognise that, at least on a better day. But the set back... it feels as though I have taken 2 steps toward and 10 steps back!

PTSD is definitely one hell of a disease, I often call it a ‘life sentence’ because it’s like a rollercoaster which never ends.

I’m so sorry to read that you are both starting over too - it really does suck.

@woodsy1 - I am so proud to hear that you have reached out to friends who offer you a power up! I’ve always admired this in people and in fact, always encourage my close ones to reach out for a helping hand when needed. It’s priceless. And yet I can’t seem to do this myself. I just can’t bare to be a burden maybe? Or maybe I believe that no one around me will understand anyway so it will be pointless?

Those around me have never dealt with PTSD and the intensity of it. So it feels like sometimes it is an unnecessary worry for them to know just how bad things actually are.
 

ladee

MyPTSD Pro
I'm starting over because my son killed himself Jan 12 this year. I am shattered and broken and have PTSD as a constant companion to further complicate an already complicated set of circumstances. If I did not have this place to come to and the people here who are my friends, I simply would not do this rebuilding again.

So I truly understand about taken ten steps backward. But we can do this. Because we are not alone. And people here DO understand.

Hope things get better or at least different for you so you can regain hope and momentum. I do understand.
 

ladee

MyPTSD Pro
I'm starting over because my son killed himself Jan 12 this year. I am shattered and broken and have PTSD as a constant companion to further complicate an already complicated set of circumstances. If I did not have this place to come to and the people here who are my friends, I simply would not do this rebuilding again.

So I truly understand about taken ten steps backward. But we can do this. Because we are not alone. And people here DO understand.

Hope things get better or at least different for you so you can regain hope and momentum. I do understand.
 
@ladee, I am so so so deeply sorry. So deeply sorry for your loss. I cannot even comprehend. It is not something a parent should ever have to go through, ever. I lost my daughter two years ago, albeit different circumstances but the grief we share. Life has very much not been the same since.

I know you probably hear this a lot but the sheer admiration of you, out here lending a helping hand when you yourself have been dealt the worst of cards - what a pure soul.

There is nothing in this world that I can say that will make any of this better. All I can do is thank you for being here, reaching out in the darkest hour and hope that one day soon your soul too feels a little lighter.
 

ladee

MyPTSD Pro
And I am so very sorry for the loss of your daughter. We are changed and never quite go back to our old selves again. I'm so very very sad that you understand. None of us should have to do this. But here we are.

Sending you a lot of hugs and respect for still wanting to have the life you need to have. We can do this. We weren't offered a choice. So we will make the best of what we have left.

Heart hugs to you!!
 

Simply Simon

MyPTSD Pro
I recognise the strength it took me to do that when in reality, I didn’t even want to exist anymore. I don’t really know why I fought to go on but I did. And yet, although I have been through the worst, it feels like I will not get through this..

My strong has run out.

Hello and I’m glad you’re here so you don’t need to be quite as alone.

If my lifetime of experience (and decade in this community) is anything to go by, this will probably keep happening to varying degrees. The bad news? As @ladee said, PTSD is not linear. I like to think about it like having a seizure disorder or diabetes. There are management tools, but there are also times when everything goes to hell, and sometimes you know why, and sometimes you don’t.

Here is what I tell myself. Sometimes it helps.

PTSD is a f*cking liar. It will knock you prone, set its boot on the back of your neck, push your face into the dirt, bare down hard, and then it will incessantly shout at you, or maybe it will whisper, but it won’t stop:

You will never be happy

You have never been happy

This is forever

You’ll never survive


And all of it is lies.

As my husband likes to say about the voice in my head: put tape over that bitch’s mouth and lock her in the damn closet.

You will transcend these lies. And you’ll probably believe them just as often as you prove them wrong. But they are lies. Don’t forget that.
 

woodsy1

MyPTSD Pro
Thank you both for taking the time to communicate with me.
It's been a pleasure. Thanks for reaching out. Glad to meet you.
Progress definitely has been made and I recognise that, at least on a better day. But the set back... it feels as though I have taken 2 steps toward and 10 steps back!
That's how it feels. I sometimes wonder though. We're always moving forward, ya know? It's just a matter of learning how to move forward in a way that works for us. Or learning how to make it work with new rules. Yeah?
PTSD is definitely one hell of a disease, I often call it a ‘life sentence’ because it’s like a rollercoaster which never ends.
Yup. PTSD. Life. We have it until we don't. It's each moment that counts. We learn to enjoy them regardless of the condition we find ourselves in.
I’m so sorry to read that you are both starting over too - it really does suck.
It does. Starting over also has benefits, no matter the handicap. We get to try again. I like that better than the alternative.
@woodsy1 - I am so proud to hear that you have reached out to friends who offer you a power up!
It was done out of weakness and need. Like asking for a life saver. I don't know how much there is here to be proud of. Just clinging to dear life and the things which are important... people, friends, loved ones. What other things really matter?
I’ve always admired this in people and in fact, always encourage my close ones to reach out for a helping hand when needed. It’s priceless. And yet I can’t seem to do this myself. I just can’t bare to be a burden maybe?
I could not either. I was a helper. An encourager. A supporter. I was working towards my MA in family therapy.

We reach out when we need to. And we're there for each other. Life is better shared.

I'm glad you are in my life.
Or maybe I believe that no one around me will understand anyway so it will be pointless?
Yup. You might be surprised how many people actually relate. It's just a matter of getting there with them.
Those around me have never dealt with PTSD and the intensity of it. So it feels like sometimes it is an unnecessary worry for them to know just how bad things actually are.
Yeah, PTSD is bad. Hard to communicate. You know what? The ones who really care somehow understand even if they don't have PTSD. We all have something. Ya know?

Some friends just have a special way of caring no matter what. It's good to have friends like that.

I love mine. I wish I could be hanging out with them right now.
 
@Simply Simon I think you’re absolutely right in saying that this will keep happening to some degree. Which sucks big time in all honesty. But I’ve had so many moments in this journey where I thought ‘FOR F***K SAKE, I am doing everything by the book, the reading, the inner work, the boundaries, the meditating, the forcing myself out in nature and I am STILL back here!!!’ I even sometimes manage to laugh at it all, probably because if I don’t laugh I’ll cry.
It’s just one of those diseases that I think gives us a reprieve and then reminds us it’s actually still lurking around every so often.

I’m just very tired of the up and down of it all now. Because there’s only so many times I can dust myself off, smile and keep going before I’m back here, at the point of giving up.

@woodsy1 - Reaching out to friends AND feeling like you love hanging out with them, feeling as though they are a little pick me up is absolutely something to be proud of. Humans need human contact. We need to feel loved and wanted and cared for and your friends are clearly doing a very good job of it! I am thankful that you have people like that in your life.

I think I probably admire this so much also because it’s not something I’m capable of doing myself. No matter how many people reach out to me because they can sense I am not okay, I don’t know why I cannot open up. I feel so lonely, is it by choice? By habit? By being stubborn? Or maybe just incapable of opening up? Who knows. I think on the odd time I have opened up I felt almost ‘dirty’ after. I can’t quite put my finger on it. But definitely like I regretted it that instant, like now they know too much, now I am perceived in a different light, they probably don’t understand, probably don’t care enough to understand and now they think I’m crazy too!
 

woodsy1

MyPTSD Pro
@Simply Simon I think you’re absolutely right in saying that this will keep happening to some degree. Which sucks big time in all honesty. But I’ve had so many moments in this journey where I thought ‘FOR F***K SAKE, I am doing everything by the book, the reading, the inner work, the boundaries, the meditating, the forcing myself out in nature and I am STILL back here!!!’ I even sometimes manage to laugh at it all, probably because if I don’t laugh I’ll cry.
It’s just one of those diseases that I think gives us a reprieve and then reminds us it’s actually still lurking around every so often.

I’m just very tired of the up and down of it all now. Because there’s only so many times I can dust myself off, smile and keep going before I’m back here, at the point of giving up.

@woodsy1 - Reaching out to friends AND feeling like you love hanging out with them, feeling as though they are a little pick me up is absolutely something to be proud of. Humans need human contact. We need to feel loved and wanted and cared for and your friends are clearly doing a very good job of it! I am thankful that you have people like that in your life.
I am also glad I do have some friends in my life to help me up when I am down. I am just learning to cry out for help. My friends aren't used to this and so often don't seem to realize that when I cry out for help, it's like a drowning person gasping for air. I think in time, they will better understand that I'm not the same person they've always known.
I think I probably admire this so much also because it’s not something I’m capable of doing myself. No matter how many people reach out to me because they can sense I am not okay, I don’t know why I cannot open up. I feel so lonely, is it by choice? By habit? By being stubborn? Or maybe just incapable of opening up? Who knows. I think on the odd time I have opened up I felt almost ‘dirty’ after. I can’t quite put my finger on it. But definitely like I regretted it that instant, like now they know too much, now I am perceived in a different light, they probably don’t understand, probably don’t care enough to understand and now they think I’m crazy too!
I get this. Asking for help is hard. I always feel like I'm putting too much on my friends when I do reach out. Sometimes I even feel like maybe they're right n I'm not really in such bad shape. It doesn't take long before PTSD knocks that hopeful thought right out of my mind. PTSD is a cruel affliction. Part of the cruelty is the recurring sense of getting better only to get knocked flat again.

I am thankful for the "better" days I do experience though.
 
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