Wednesday, 26 June 2019

When the Call for Help Runs Dry (TW)

I was browsing social media when I encountered this post. I am placing it here in the glory of its original size because dammit, it is about time that you had to deal with even a small portion of the hurt that I experienced.

I do feel bitter. When I issued a cry for help, I got two responses.


So look at that thing. Read it. AGAIN. And the next time that I ask for help, by God, *do* something.

When I fist saw that image, I started shaking. The shaking was the physical manifestation of the fact that I was suppressing screams, heaving sobs, curling up in a corner of the bed, etc. First of all, I was in the midst of a bad asthma flareup. It would have harmed me to give way to decompression and venting.

Secondly, I was not in a space that was safe for me to decompress like that. Others here would not understand the process and could become frightened by it. God only knows if they would have preserved my privacy, or told their entire congregation about it. I needed a safe space where my privacy, autonomy, and dignity would have been upheld.

The images in my head were historical: the chattel enslavement of Africans and their descendants by whites, forced imprisoned workers enslaved under convict leasing, enslaved sharecroppers.

What is in my heart and in my soul did not express itself in my head. Those memories of my past stayed right there, in the middle of me, waiting for the chance to explode and take me over for the next few hours.

I didn't let it happen - not because I am "strong," but because I do not have access to a safe space in which to let it all out.

I had been begging for exactly that space before I limited the privacy of the post. I am bitter. I see people post advocating for causes related to the very abuses that gave rise to the injuries which in turn continue to hurt me. It is easy to reach out to help a vague wounded entity. Here is a tangible, wounded entity right under your noses.

I re-experienced the emptying out of my own identity. The emotional pain. The weariness. Sleep deprivation. Brittle, rigid rules, moving goalposts, any chance to insult and punish. I re-experienced the abject fear.

But for a very few people who shared space with me and heard me out, I was alone with it. No-one should have to be alone with such monsters. No-one.

The causes that you advocate are under your noses. Open your eyes. Unplug your ears. Care for the people who are right there with you.

Thursday, 13 June 2019

We Are Strong; Fake Bone Spurs Are Wimpy

I live with PTSD due to causes other than military service. I don't know what it is like to live with PTSD as a military serviceperson. I do know what it is like to live with PTSD as a result of severe abuse.

We are not weak.
We are strong.

Every day, we battle demons that others could not imagine and that would leave most everyone else flat on the floor. And yet each and every day, we choose to continue breathing. We continue to create, to work, to parent, to love our families - by birth and by choice - to lead, to add the richness of our experiences and personalities to this world. Even those of us who don't make it, whose pain is so great that they die from these horrible monsters - our siblings in survival fought it off for so damned long. So damned long. They fought. We all continue to fight. To breathe. To keep giving back.

THAT is the depth of endless bravery.

You know what's wimpy?
Fake bone spurs.

Thursday, 6 June 2019

The Nightmare of Flashbacks

It is chasing me. It is haunting me. Popping up unexpectedly, unwanted.

There is nowhere to run. No hiding place is safe. It is a monster, rising from the night to become a daytime beast.

Key terms: PTSD. Nightmares. Flashbacks.

I am a strong person and do not need pity. I do, however, need some gooey choco-oatmeal cookies and a stereo that plays radio and CD. Especially the latter, though, as it is for my mental health. Love is also cool.