Spilling my Beans

woodsy1

MyPTSD Pro
So, I've never written a trauma diary before. I doubt I'll immediately identify a specific focus here. I'm just writing.

I spent the last two weeks thinking I was avoiding processing. It happens anyhow. Can't seem to stop my mind from continually tormenting me.

I guess I might as well write things down. At least it gives me something to do instead of just being miserable. Maybe it will help.

I think I want to talk to my therapist about PTSD in general. What it's like living with this every day. Not knowing who I am or if I have any purpose in life. Having muddled thoughts all the time. Not being able to sleep well. Not being able to socialize. Always being tense. Feeling like I will go crazy though I'm constantly assured I will not. All the usual PTSD stuff.

My therapist and I jumped from one discussion about my trauma to breathing exercises. Maybe that's good? But I think I am very cranial. I think I need to talk more about my stuff even if sometimes I don't think I can or don't think I want to.

Once I get to talking though, I dead end. It seems so useless to just keep whining about what I'm experiencing. Then I feel like it's no use to keep talking about the same symptoms over and over again.

This is still so new to me. This is not who I am accustomed to being. All my life, I've been a friendly, introverted but outgoing, fun loving person who always took life's challenges in stride.

Now I'm pretty pathetic. I can't handle people. I still want to, but I just can't. Even saying hello to friendly strangers in the mall is a major life event for me.

I am always tense. Sometimes the tension becomes physically painful. It just sucks never being able to properly relax.

Sometimes I get the shakes. My hands sometimes shake so bad I can't drink my coffee. Sometimes my whole body shakes.

I long for relationship. But I can't seem to be still long enough to build relationships. I try to sit and have conversation with folks and end up so uncomfortable that I can't enjoy it or even think straight.

Ugh!

So today, I am processing some of this by writing about it. Tomorrow I may not want to process anything! I don't know what I'm going to be like day to day.

I've only just begun really working with my PTSD. Perhaps in time I will identify something of a reliable pattern to how I relate to the world now. Right now I just don't know.

It's encouraging to think that I have seen improvement over my condition a year or two ago. It's daunting to think it may take years to figure out the new (not improved) me. I want to just live my life! But living a "normal" life like I did before is just not in the equation right now.

Well, it does seem that all this rambling has helped. I feel more calm than when I started.

Perhaps I will end up journaling a lot. Or, maybe my symptoms will flare and I will tire of writing, feeling it is useless. We'll just have to see what happens.

I'll keep you posted.
 

woodsy1

MyPTSD Pro
I think maybe in addition to my PTSD, I may be having something of a mid-life crisis. I'm turning 50 in May and sometimes I feel so old.

It scares me to think of being miserable for what ever time I have left. I'd like to just enjoy what time I have. But I often find it challenging to enjoy my life in my current state of mental health.

Ugh.

It can be challenging to find the words to express my feelings. Frustrated. Trapped. Debilitated. Lonely. Regretting past mistakes.

It seems I have a hard time staying focused on one topic. I stray to another topic. Then I think of more to say about the original topic. Then I decide to skip it.

Ugh.

So anyhow, 50 sometimes seems like a big deal to me. It feels like I'm starting life over with just a few years to go and less than half the tools I had in my toolbox before.

I guess I sometimes feel rushed. I want to be functional enough to enjoy my time. But functional enough seems so far off. So I try to fake it til I make it, only to crash it.

That's my bean spilling regarding my approaching 50 years old.
 
Welcome, @woodsy1. I too am about to turn 50 and it's really making me take stock of my life.

Is your therapist experienced in working with trauma? I found I bounced around a lot in therapy until I found someone who really knew what they were doing in regards to treating people with trauma issues.

Great start to your diary. You might want to think about whether you want to use it for exposure. I did and it was amazingly helpful. You can find the guidelines here -> https://www.myptsd.com/threads/guidance-for-using-a-trauma-diary-for-exposure-therapy-cbt.398/
 

woodsy1

MyPTSD Pro
Welcome, @woodsy1. I too am about to turn 50 and it's really making me take stock of my life.
Thanks @somerandomguy. I appreciate the welcome.
Is your therapist experienced in working with trauma? I found I bounced around a lot in therapy until I found someone who really knew what they were doing in regards to treating people with trauma issues.
I don't know how experienced my therapist is in working with trauma. He's a good fit for me for now though. First of five that I can sit with for more than a couple sessions.
Great start to your diary. You might want to think about whether you want to use it for exposure. I did and it was amazingly helpful. You can find the guidelines here -> https://www.myptsd.com/threads/guidance-for-using-a-trauma-diary-for-exposure-therapy-cbt.398/
Thanks for the tip. The link is actually too much for me to read all at once I can't focus that long and I lose interest/motivation to keep reading.

I may get to the point of using my diary as a trauma journal. Just not today.
 

woodsy1

MyPTSD Pro
Well, I got out for a walk today. That helped. I think regular exercise is going to have to be an ongoing tool in my coping mechanism toolbox.

I was doing really well there for a while. I was walking 2-5 miles most every day. I was feeling pretty good.

Then I caught a cold. Nowadays that pretty much means self-isolating. It was more restrictive in that it's been rainy here. Sometimes it's hard to get out for a walk when I'm sick and it's raining.

Boy did that make for a miserable week and a half for me! I isolated for two years straight not so long ago. This week and a half felt like falling back into that pit. Maybe worse?

So, I'm learning what helps me and what doesn't. That's a plus.
 

woodsy1

MyPTSD Pro
My tongue is raw. It is so irritating after a while!

This probably makes the list of less annoying things. Still it is irritating nonetheless.

Short entry. Ha!
 

Freida

Sponsor
welcome -- and kudos for a good start!

I'm super thinky too -- my ts laugh that I'm the best educated client they have because I research the crap out of everything they talk about

Bestie yelled at me because the only thing I was getting out of therapy was how not to talk about my problems! 😁

Baby steps!
 

woodsy1

MyPTSD Pro
welcome -- and kudos for a good start!
Thanks!
I'm super thinky too -- my ts laugh that I'm the best educated client they have because I research the crap out of everything they talk about
Ditto. I was actually studying to be a mental health therapist when my PTSD knocked me off my rails. When I'm in the mood, I research the heck out of everything. Lol.
Bestie yelled at me because the only thing I was getting out of therapy was how not to talk about my problems! 😁
Now that is funny 😂
Baby steps!
I have to baby step. It's all I can do now. Anybody got a binky?
 

woodsy1

MyPTSD Pro
So I went to see some friends for a while last night. Seeing them really pulled me up out of a dark place. They always have a way of making me feel welcome and liked.

Twice in the evening my anxiety caused me to shake uncontrollably. It was physically painful. One shaking event was while we were discussing something that was hard for me. The other was when I later went to bed.

In bed, I must have shaken for 20 to 30 minutes. It was so painful and exhausting. I was also breathing in a way possibly similar to hyperventilating but with longer, deeper breaths than I'd typically associate with hyperventilating.

These shaking events are absolutely horrible.

The one was triggered by conversation.

The later one maybe was kind of like my body letting go after being social and tense with my friends so long?

It's horrible to have to go through such suffering just to spend some much needed time with friends.
 

Deanna

MyPTSD Pro
Hi Woodsy! Welcome to the forums!

There are some really knowledgeable people on here, that check-in from time to time. Or is that, time after time!!! Lol!!! I personally have had PTSD all my life with a late diagnosis. I was pissed in a way because i felt like my life was a lie.. Not knowing. I'm in my 50's as well. I've been going through this thing lately where I don't talk much..

At my work ( self) people have no clue.. Totally a different person. Down to earth.. Loving ( which I am in off time) but for me meds have been my friend. I just take a few. I have chronic insomnia which I take meds for and go to counseling ( which for me.. She's a chatterbox and i know its her job) but she did get my attention the other day when she said she had a client that committed suicide. Um.. Personally I don't think she was being honest about that but hey.. Therapy doesn't help everyone but it is what you make it

I'm sorry you shake. I'd go to a medical doc for that. I did with my insomnia.

It's good to meet you and I'm sure I'll inter-react better ( or I hope I will) in the immediate future. Here's a pic of my 🐱.
 

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