PTSD: is it background music for us?

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My mind developed in survivor mode, it plays as background music now, always lurking in the shadows, always looking to increase its volume.

My mind is drawn to problems (danger), like a bug to a light, it is a habitual trait, it allows the background music to amplify the tune.

Our defense mechanism is more sensitive, more developed, and more used than a normal person.

We are superstars at spotting potential danger.

Focusing on the present becomes problematic.

My emotions intensify, some of the left prefrontal cortex shuts down, we are in full-blown survivor mode.

The cognitive engine will only make things worse, he heightens panic, as he judges and grasps trauma thoughts.

Failure or Fear of failure has always been a worst-case scenario for me.

My childhood was filled with fear of failure, it became habitual, my default mode of existence.

I try to meditate, try to distract myself, try to let this bombardment of thoughts go, and try to calm down.

My mind is mush, the best I can do is play defense until the spell breaks.

I have traveled this path so often it has become a freeway.

This path is filled with pain and suffering.
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Deeper Dimensions of the Heart

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From The Deep Heart:


“As we learn to abide in the heart not knowing, a different kind of knowing appears.

It speaks in a different voice, one that does not judge, assert, insist, or deny.

Amidst the cacophony of the mind’s stream of thoughts, the voice of heart-wisdom is more like a murmur — the quiet guest at the noisy dinner table of daily life.

This knowing may use words or images, or it may be immediate, direct, and unmediated by language or imagery.

It may come as a subtle feeling and sensation — a glow of recognition when the truth is spoken, an inner sense of illumination.

Or it may use all of these modes in combination like a symphony.”

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PTSD: Hyper-vigilance and fear

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Triggered the other day, I became more hyper-vigilant for a couple of days.

I am acutely aware, super sensitive to external stimuli while feeling extremely vulnerable.

This is PTSDs mechanism of influence and control.

Everything is heightened as my body recoils, bracing for my fight or flight to fire.

Perceived dangers have multiplied, thinking is compromised, and my nervous system is on high alert.

No physical danger exists, it is all perceived emotional damage I fear.

It feels real, my body’s physical mechanisms for protection are near tilt.

Feels like I am going into battle or my PTSD symptoms have exploded.

I would avoid and isolate however I have outings planned with my grandkids.

Sometimes I can block out most of the world, and feel like I am wearing a protective shield around me, impenetrable and safe.

My mind wants to focus on past triggers, feelings of danger, and vulnerability.

Thoughts of what if and worst-case scenarios fly by my consciousness.

Thoughts interrupt my serenity, perceived fear wants control.

How will I handle today?

It is emotionally draining as the fear seems real.
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PTSD: Not Knowing

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From The Deep Heart:

“Not knowing refers not only to our inability to know what will happen; it also means that we cannot know our true nature solely by thinking about it.

Who we really are is not something we can define or confine with thought.

Who we really are is quite literally inconceivable and unimaginable.

Our true nature is not an object — it exists prior to the mind.

We can say what our true nature is not, at least initially, but we cannot definitively state what it is.

Yet we can know it directly by consciously being it.

When the mind clearly recognizes that it is not going to understand what is prior to it, a spontaneous letting go occurs, and attention quite naturally rests in the heart.
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Introverted or Extroverted Marty?

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When I improved the first time, life was much better, the craziness had calmed to a tolerable level.

It almost felt euphoric in the beginning.

So all my life, until this point I was an introvert.

All that changed and this other self, the extroverted me arrived.

At the ballgame yesterday, I engaged two different parents, separately during the game, guys in conversation.

It was easy, and enjoyable with two lively conversations about kids, sports, and life.

It is funny, like it’s a caricature of me, animated, engaging, confident, almost at ease.

Who is that guy?

The PTSD Marty is shy, calculated, and avoidant.

The true self is at ease, extroverted and engaging.

Is this a success or what?

It’s startling to look back and wonder, how did I do that?
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PTSD: Desire versus Risk

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PTSD: The Equation that decides how we live, is desire versus risk.

If my desires lead to me being triggered, I start avoiding this danger.

Another equation is pain versus pleasure, which finds us avoiding for safety.

Many PTSD symptoms are risk aversive, avoidance leading the way.

Survival mode is how PTSD rolls.

In this mode, risks seem enormous, our perception is consumed by the danger.

Our fight or flight mechanism strongly reinforces this belief as real.

Physical mechanisms are changing and firing.

Strong chemicals are secreted to face a lethal threat.

Desires wane when complex PTSD is active.

How do we ever enjoy life, people, or feel safe?
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I have not read an accurate description of intrusive thoughts,

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I have not read an accurate description of intrusive thoughts, what it’s like, the intensity, or the volume.

We have no control over what thoughts arrive in our consciousness (60,000 daily).

Neuroscientists tell us negative ones are like velcro, while positive more like Teflon.

It’s all related to the defense of our being, self-preservation, survival mode overrides everything else.

Life is drastically altered by these intrusive trauma thoughts.

No way to ignore or control them. Letting go is the only path.

So many thoughts arrive in my consciousness that I get tired and overwhelmed.

It is hard to describe in words. Intrusive thoughts come at me non-stop.

An image of a Gatlin gun firing round after round is what it feels like in my head.

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They arrive connected to external stimuli, or on their own without any perceived danger.

I have never been able to get away from PTSD, no matter what I have done.

It is one of the those things you will never understand unless you experience it.

Does anyone else experience thought patterns like this?
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PTSD: Blatant facts:

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Blatant facts: PTSD thoughts hide at an extremely shallow depth.

Piercing the surface is child’s play for them.

What a visual!!!!!!!

In my daily world, these thoughts haunt me, I want answers, accountability, responsibility, and justice.

None of that shit is ever going to happen.

There are few answers, and thousands of questions, we will never know or understand.

My PTSD self is elusive, he benignly senses danger.

It is hard to know what is real, and what is perceived, especially when you agitate my PTSD emotions or triggers.

I have reacted to perceived triggers over and over and over with no solution in sight.

Triggers can be unplugged, calmed, or handled, but not eliminated or controlled.

They happen outside our control, external and internal forces collide.

This has been a violent, drama-filled life.

Fear of failure should be on my gravestone.

That is hard to write.

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Feeling at peace: what does that feel like?

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I search for that peaceful feeling in the morning when the mind looks to peruse the day.

Being at peace means, feeling safe, relaxed, confident, looking forward to the day with unlimited opportunities.

Instead, my mind searches the day for danger, abstract danger, PTSD danger, perceived danger, then tries to navigate around any awkward situation.

It happens on its own, a habit practiced since childhood, it has deep roots.

I fear loss, humiliation, and failure above all else.

Our minds grapple with judgment, a never-ending stream of thoughts bombards us, and PTSD dominates our consciousness.

I deal with my PTSD symptoms no matter what I do.

At my worst I went agoraphobic for 6 months, hiding in my dark garage unable to muster the courage to go out.

My mind followed me into that dark garage, triggers fired despite my solitude.

Now, if I need to socialize or go to an event, I can navigate and participate.

It is not pleasant, it is filled with anxiety and awkwardness.

It’s like a soldier hearing a car backfire.

He takes cover spontaneously without thought, a perceived imminent threat has been heard.

He has been transported back to the battlefield.

That’s PTSD.
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Spending time in my ROOM

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This blog chronicles my decade-plus battle with PTSD.

Over 6,000 posts, plenty of educational expertise, sound advice, and an optimistic outlook for therapies and meditation.

I have read, researched, actively tried to heal through therapy, application, and meditation.

I could be a huge success story, working above and beyond, but I avoid people for safety.

I can not change reality.

In reality, I only venture out for my grandkids and necessities, hiking, food etc.

That means I live my life mainly in my room by myself.

I can not explain all my reasons, but I end up not going out.

After all the effort, all the therapy, all the courage in facing my demons, I do not socialize.

I avoid most people.

I have no desire to risk betrayal, trust died many years ago.

How do you climb out of this hole?
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