Confessions

It’s time the truth comes out. I say this because I can’t do it on my own and need to be held accountable. As I’ve stated in a previous post, I stopped using drugs November 21, 2017 after 35 years of heavy non stop daily use.

When I stopped using, all the memories and the trauma that I had been repressing for so long came welling up out of me and I didn’t know how to deal with it at all. I was already in therapy but it was still too much for me to bear. I was in and out of the mental hospital because I was extremely suicidal. That’s all I could think about. I didn’t feel like I deserved to live. I was tainted. Some of the things I was forced to be a part of and participate in, no human, let alone a little child, should ever have to endure. I was defeated, broken and ashamed.

I did several weeks of a partial hospitalization program learning different skills like DBT, CBT, mindfulness and distractions to help deal with the flood of memories. I started journaling every single memory and passed it on to my therapist to hopefully set me free of the pain and the burden of holding it all inside of me. But nothing seemed to work. The more I tried to let go the more it seemed to grasp hold of me. I don’t know if perhaps I was afraid to let go because these are my secrets and they are what make me me. I don’t even know if that really makes sense at all to anyone but me. Perhaps I feel like I would lose my sense of identity if I let go. I honestly don’t know.

I managed to stay clean for 6 months. 6 months of grueling flashbacks, nightmares and panic attacks. Until I couldn’t take it anymore and I started drinking and using again. But in my broken brain it was okay Because I didn’t go back to my drug of choice. I decided to use something much worse. I picked up heroin. I went from just trying it to full on withdrawals if I didn’t have it.

I broke down a few weeks later and told my therapist. She recommended I do detox and rehab. Which I did. 7 days detox and 14 days in residential treatment. I was proud to be clean again. Then it started all over again. The flashbacks, nightmares and panic attacks. This time I tried to ignore the memories. I stuffed them in my “vault” and locked them in.

I was amazed, it seemed to have worked!! I was clean and I was trauma free. I was starting to actually feel like a normal human being. That awesome feeling lasted about a month until the vault broke open and the nightmares began again.

Perhaps out of weakness or laziness or just plain old defeat I picked up my drug of choice again. Everything went back to my status quo. I’m no longer suicidal. No more nightmares, flashbacks or panic attacks. My therapist said I was starting to stabilize. All is good, right? Wrong!

Now my health is deteriorating again. My blood pressure is off the charts. If I keep it up I’ll have a stroke. My kidneys are failing again. I’m having palpitations regularly. My CHF is acting up again and I’m swelling up with water.

I need to STOP and I’m too afraid to!!! If I don’t stop I will die. If I don’t deal with my trauma, it makes me suicidal and I will die. I need help. I’m afraid of my past and afraid of my memories. I somehow need to muster the courage to face it all head on. It’s time for me to stop running and hiding from it and deal with it.

I know I can stop using,, that doesn’t seem to be the issue. what I need help with is facing my trauma. What has helped you guys face your trauma? How did you face your trauma without losing control? How did you get the PTSD symptoms under control?

Coping

I’ve been really struggling coping lately and maintaining a sense of security. I’ve been self loathing and hating. Basically internalizing all my rage and anger and directing it towards myself. I’ve been too tired of the fighting to carry on. Tired of the daily battle of existence. I’ve been blaming myself for the trauma I experienced. I should have fought harder to try and stop it or not stopped trying to get help by telling people what was happening until someone listened to me. I shouldn’t have worried about what others thought and shamed myself into silence. These thoughts have been tearing me up inside. All the what- ifs and should have, could have and would haves. It’s very hard for me to stop this negative thinking once it has spiraled out of control. Sadly, yet fortunately, in my group therapy today, there was a new girl to the group and she was talking about the struggles she is facing at this current moment. It kind of helped me put my pain into perspective. Fortunately mine is past pain and trauma that I’m finally starting to deal with which is hard all on its own, but I’m not experiencing current issues along with it. I guess what I’m trying to say is, sometimes it takes someone else’s pain and sorrow to help put ours into perspective and dig ourselves out of the hole we put ourselves in.

The Monster Inside Me

If you could see the real me would you still love me? Would we still be friends? All the real thoughts and feelings that I have to hide. I can’t help the way I truly am. But I can help what I let you see. Evil spirit vile child. Those words resonate through me. I used to think it was lies. I tried to tell myself it’s not true. But the older I got the more I saw of myself. I don’t look like it would be true. I’m married with one child. A house and a business. But evil lurks within me. I’ve had to learn how to respond in a normal manner. Learned to mimic emotions. I don’t feel or know how to truly show love. Someone asked me recently that love meant to me. I didn’t have an answer. I can mimic it though. Compassion, remorse jealousy. Those are just words to me and learned responses. Knowing this about me I really don’t care. But I choose not to show or say how I really think and feel. I do not want to be locked away.

At a Crossroads

I’ve been fighting the urge to run. Escape from life for a little while. . No worries or responsibilities. I long for it. But that’s what I’ve done my whole life. Run and hid from my skeletons and demons. Everytime I start working through my trauma I back off and go on the defensive so as not to deal with the core issues. Why am I so afraid? I think because I’m so used to these emotions I’m afraid to let go. It’s part of who I am. I don’t know any other way. Do I continue on with treatment facing the trauma head on? It’s so hard. It’s like reliving it all over again and I’m so tired. But I’m also tired of running. I don’t know what to do. Do I do the usual and throw my hands up and put my masks on and pretend that all is ok? It sounds harder but it really isn’t. Fake smiles and pleasantries is what I know, it’s what I’m good at. Dealing with trauma head on is hard and unfamiliar. It is too overwhelming. The pain is too raw and I hate emotions. I feel vulnerable and it’s uncomfortable being emotional. I’m just so confused. Tempted to run and hide or stay and fight the fight.

In Crisis

I’m in the midst of a crisis right now. I’m hoping talking about it might alleviate some of my symptoms. I’m not to sure starting a blog was the best thing for me to do, yet anyways. It has stirred up alot of raw emotions and wounds that haven’t healed yet. All day today I have been plagued with horrendous memories and flashbacks. The visual won’t stop. It’s a movie that won’t stop playing in my head. It’s like it’s really happening. I see it, I hear it and I am even recalling any smells that went along with it. I’ve tried all the skills I’ve learned so far being in therapy to make it stop and nothing is working. It’s so bad, it feels like my brain is going to shatter into millions of pieces. I can’t continue much longer like this. I’ve made the decision to go to the emergency room so they can help me. I really don’t want to be hospitalized again but I can’t live like this either

Nightmares and PTSD

It’s 1:45 in the morning. Another night of waking up in pure terror. I’m dripping with sweat. My heart is pounding. My face is streaked with tears. I’m terrified! How much longer will I have to endure reliving the past? I feel like I should be past this by now. I have accepted what happened to me. I know it can’t hurt me anymore. I can’t change it and I know this. What more do I need to do to move on? Will I ever be able to move on? I think that is what scares me the most. I don’t want to live in the past. I want to forget. I want to wake up, just once, feeling completely rested and not tortured by memories. So I push forward. I face another day. Another day of wearing a mask so I look and sound okay on the outside. Hiding the terror and pain. I’m trying to heal and recover and I’ve made tremendous progress which I’m grateful for. I was a complete disaster a year ago. Barely functioning. A lost soul walking among the living. I had been using drugs the last 35 years to forget, to keep the trauma buried deep inside. I got clean November 21, 2017. I had no idea that the memories would come crashing over me like a Tsunami. I thought I was going crazy. I wasn’t sure I could survive the trauma again. But I did. It hasn’t been easy, in fact dealing with it has been the hardest thing I’ve ever done. But I know deep down every day I get one step closer to freedom and recovery. All I know is I have to keep trying. Keep telling myself this to shall pass

Suicidal Ideations… what to do?

Today is the first time in months I had suicidal ideations. I used to suffer from them daily. So I was a bit surprised when it smacked me in the forehead. Things have been a little rocky for me emotionally this past week. I’m going through some unwanted changes. I’m having to switch therapists, which I am finding myself struggling with. It left me feeling betrayed, angry and vulnerable. But I believe that’s my fault, I shouldn’t have put so much faith and trust into one person. I got to attached. I think because I told her everything about my childhood. I gave her the weight that was on my shoulders that I had been carrying for so long. Change for me is tough. I have major trust issues, so when I let someone in to see the real me and let my guard down, I feel betrayed when said person has to move on and leaves me there stranded. On the plus side, I have a new therapist whom I feel may be a good fit for me. The walls may take stone time before they crumble completely but I see it happening at least. I’m not going to dwell on the suicidal thoughts because they will pass and I’m glad I’m able to recognize where it is stemming from today. Each day brings me just that much closer to a healthier me.