Posts Tagged ‘AWARENESS’

An Excuse proof Mantra: “As long as I have a Breath, I will die one step closer to my Father”

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One man, Nando Parrado, his will, his ability to think outside the box, to think rescue was possible, took action when all others had given up.

The other 15 survivors thought Nando crazy, thought walking out of the Andes impossible.

They were mostly high school boys, a rugby team, the Jesuits we’re rigorous academics and thought rugby developed the toughness needed for life.

The pilot miscalculated crossing the Andes into Chile and crashed.

No life existed at this altitude, many died in the crash while others died in a later avalanche.

Nando created a mantra, one that was in the moment, one of action, “As long as I have a breath, I will die one step closer to my father.”

They left Uraguay in nearly 100-degree weather.

Took Nando almost a month to convince another to go with him.

They all would have died on that mountain, Nando was the only visionary who realized this fact.

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It is called the “Miracle in the Andes.”

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Nando and his partner, Roberto had crossed the Andes with clothing sewn together from airplane seats. They hiked 70 miles in ten days from the other side of the Andes.

Professional climbers with modern day equipment struggled to repeat this miraculous feat.

To this day, no one knows how two men could survive this ordeal.

16 men survived because of one mans will, drive, life force.

His mantra was excuse proof, as long as I have a breath, I will take action, take a step forward.

He saved 15 and Roberto became a heart surgeon.

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Labels dig us deeper into PTSD

https://www.pinterest.com/pin/1031042908411618836/

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“When we attach labels onto things that appear in our life, they immediately become a roadblock to directly experiencing the Truth of the thing itself. Our labels impart an immediate bias onto things, which skews our impression, distorting our perception.”

This is a quote from the Kundalini morning group I am part of.

We “PTSD people”, is this our identifying label for life.

I identify with being a PTSD sufferer, ran a mindfulness group to help trauma victims, and currently facilitate this PTSD blog.

My life is consumed with trying to gain well-being against PTSD.

I label others as normal people, my words isolate me more.

Other labels connected are unworthy, flawed, anxious, and different.

We also label others, which places the bias on them.

He is gay, she is a rape victim, and our labeling gets a nasty boost with divisive politics these days.

Look at the names being thrown back and forth by politicians, Twitter has become a battlefield.

We kind of demean others with our labels, place them in a confined box, limiting their potential.

Does labeling myself as a PTSD sufferer limit my chance for well-being?

I know the labels I use are detrimental to my health.

I could stop using so many labels.

Now I see labels are hidden judgments that gain everyday use and acceptance.

This is fertile ground for us to improve.

It is all connected to dissociation, thinking about the past then drawing conclusions.

Guilty as charged, working to drop as many labels as possible.

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Apple Is Working on iPhone Features to Help Detect Depression, Cognitive Decline

https://pixabay.com/users/colin00b-346653/

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“Company is working with UCLA, Biogen to see if sensitive data like facial expressions, typing metrics could signal mental-health concerns.”

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My two cents: I do not need a machine to tell me I am depressed.

However, this could be a great diagnostic tool for some therapists.

My other concern is Apple having all those biometrics on my privacy and mental health.

I guess they could read this blog and find out way more about me than depression.

What a world we live in.

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Sex and gender differences in post-traumatic stress disorder:

https://www.pinterest.com/pin/372672937885609980/

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Full article here: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5632782/

“Prevalence and type of trauma: The lifetime prevalence of PTSD is about 10–12% in women and 5–6% in men.

There are similar differences between the sexes for (comorbid) disorders such as major depression and anxiety disorders.

PTSD subcluster scores have been found to be increased in women, e.g. for re-experiencing and anxious arousal (Charak et al., 2014).

Men and women experience different types of trauma, both in private life and at work (e.g. police officers, Van der Meer et al., 2017), with women being exposed to more high-impact trauma (e.g. sexual trauma) than men, and at a younger age.

Trauma early in life has more impact, especially when it involves type II trauma interfering with neurobiological development and personality.

Traumatic stress affects different areas of the brains of boys and girls at different ages.

“Acute phase, stress-coping and psychotherapy: In the acute phase, women generally score higher than men on acute subjective responses, e.g. threat perception, peritraumatic dissociation and known predictors of PTSD.

Women handle stressful situations differently and have evolved differentially to support these different behaviours. For instance, women in stressful situations may use a tend-and-befriend response rather than the fight-or-flight response that is often assumed.

Emotion-focused, defensive and palliative coping are more prevalent in women, while problem-focused coping is higher in men.

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Women seek more social support, the lack of it being the most consistent predictor of negative outcome of trauma.

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Women have been shown to benefit more from psychotherapy then men in the reduction of PTSD symptoms.

Psychobiological reactions and effects of oxytocin: Although only 2% of psychobiological research has been conducted in females (mainly rats), sex differences have been shown.

Women appear to have a more sensitized hypothalamus–pituitary–axis than men, while men appear to have a sensitized physiological hyperarousal system.”

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My two cents: “Women seek more social support, the lack of it being the most consistent predictor of negative outcome of trauma.”

We men isolate, I do not trust men or women. My childhood had serious type two violence over 18 years.

Childhood abuse destroys trust, emotionally separates us men, our felt unworthiness reinforces the isolation.

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Unused Emotions: Warning; sarcasm and gallows humor ahead!!

You Can Stop Apologizing for Your Sick Sense of Humor!

https://www.pinterest.com/pin/498281146262541482/

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My PTSD symptoms have developed into habits, some emotions have been tamped down, almost buried.

I feel the void watching others interact, watching such trusting and kind emotions surface.

Defenses are down, they display warmth, I am envious, a coldness engulfs me.

I do not feel what they feel? Why is what they do worthless to me?

People laugh out loud, hug each other, seem to absorb great emotional rewards, valuable property. They smile and I guess life is good.

This sharing and community must be happiness. What do they feel?

Memories and terror are absent from their demeanors, their behavior. I do not feel safe, free, exuberant emotions, not in private, not in public.

I have no idea what this abstract thing they enjoy, it seems to fulfill them. Makes me uncomfortable.

They have some special connection, attachment, some secret communication of knowing, trusting. I think they developed this in childhood, the security they feel is also foreign to me.

I have not and do not feel these emotions and never would I trust people like this.

Why have certain emotions been absent from my life? When others have warm inclusive feelings, mine are cold, watching for danger.

Have they not been betrayed, publically humiliated, beaten half to death as a kid?

Oh, I love gallows humor, you have to laugh at what we were born into.

If you do not believe in reincarnation, childhood abuse sucks.

If I ignored my PTSD, did nothing to heal, I would expect to suffer.

Why does my PTSD haunt me after a decade-plus of intense effort?

I navigate life in a narrow alley of confusion, anxiety, and terror, finally absent of guilt.

Words can not explain the emotion of unworthiness at my core.

How could my friends understand my feelings, understand my words, or what my life is like?

How should I look at my life at 70, hope for healing by 80?

Sarcasm and gallows humor. Depression is so serious.

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A couple followers get results

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Recently two followers shared therapies that have made a difference for them. PTSD is finicky, what works for one has no impact on another.

My advice is have an open mind, keep adapting, and trying new things. I am grateful for followers sharing their journey.

Marcella Cahill:

“I finally have regulated my nervous system and have found a calmness & sense of peace inside.

Neurofeedback was the final piece for me. I live in Ireland and I do this remotely with a therapist in the states. I’m not sure if you ever tried this but

for me, it has been a life-changer. I experience the world in a completely different way and I finally have a sense of myself. I’m a nurse and had to give up my career

because I couldn’t function and am not looking forward to returning to the world of work. It may be worth a try. Please feel free to email me if you want any info

on it. I always believed I’d find my way out please believe you can too.”

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Laurajane74 wrote:

“This is maybe a little out of the blue…I know you’ve read and studied so much when it comes to this subject (childhood trauma/cptsd) but I want to recommend a book to you, if you’re interested. It’s called “No Bad Parts” by Richard C. Schwartz. It’s new this year, and as I’m reading it I’m finding a new perspective on healing trauma, it’s very practical and helpful for me so far. I’ve read and studied and meditated and been in therapy forever, too. I know how hard it is, and how much I long for a full recovery, or an end to my symptoms…I’ve had good progress the last few years, lots of setbacks, too. I appreciate you sharing your journey and I’ve learned a lot from your posts. Thank you”

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My two cents: The internal family system helped me. Dissociation is a huge issue for us.

Biofeedback did not help me but I would recommend you try it. It is simple and straightforward.

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Childhood PTSD is like herding cats

https://www.pinterest.com/pin/566046246891715375/

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At my worst, my fight or flight exploded 15 times a day, things were out of control.

At one point, my mind and nervous system were not under my control, I was numb, frozen, shaken, and terrified.

Being overwhelmed, terrified, anxious, furiously trying to avoid further suffering, I would risk my life to escape that hell.

It’s easy to see how addiction and suicide are the solutions too many choose to stop the pain.

Ptsd was like herding cats, wholly irrational to try and corral trauma or felines, thoughts would escape from the pack.

Without notice intense emotional terror would arrive in an instant, my fight or flight would violently fire, I was in survival mode, sometimes in public, frozen, unable to speak.

I never wanted to be vulnerable around people.

Childhood taught me being powerless will get you abused.

It is almost impossible to not think, to try and stop thoughts.

Try to stop thoughts and they will proliferate like rabbits.

Focusing on the breath intently, letting thoughts fade on their own, can be accomplished.

https://www.beabetterhitter.com/baseball-bat-sweet-spot/

When I played pro baseball, intense concentration was a skill all hitters possessed.

Sometimes, 30,000 screaming fans, along with the pressure of performing, the real danger from getting hit, possibly failing, creep into our minds.

If I could not block out everything else except that baseball, failure was assured.

You learn to spot spin, seeing the seams of the ball rotate quickly, knowing a breaking ball is coming.

If your thinking you fail. Thought is way too slow.

It sounds easy but you only have .4 seconds to locate the pitch, recognize it’s not coming towards your head, then have the hand-eye coordination to hit a round ball with a round bat.

On top of that, the sweet spot of the bat we need to hit the ball is about 8 inches long and maybe an inch wide at the barrel of the bat.

I had a head start on being able to meditate and did not know it.

Now instead of a ball, I focus on my breath, looking inward. All the while whether it is a ball or my breath, cognition has stopped.

Victory is unattainable, we fight for this moment, then the next, this simple, small, mundane existence, it is our life.

The ultimate goal is not healing, it is never giving up.

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Is writing this blog bad for my wellbeing?

https://www.pinterest.com/pin/19351473389808030/

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I have been told that writing this blog is detrimental to my health.

I should not be focusing on my trauma, giving it energy.

It’s like they think we can turn PTSD off and not think about it.

When I was agoraphobic and my fight or flight was firing 15 times a day, terrified out of my mind, PTSD dominated my thoughts, my body, my nervous system, and my sanity.

Is PTSD like being fat, others feel entitled to tell you why you are a failure and how easy it is to fix their fatness.

My trauma has morphed into a volatile existence.

That little boy was always dialed into his abuser (father), always trying to survive. My brain shuts down normal thought every time a scary trigger erupts.

Ptsd has jolted my nervous system violently, has frozen my mind and body in place. Mundane thoughts cease, PTSD thoughts proliferate.

I try to placate people, navigate back to my safe space, keep conversations shallow and benign.

I have no interest in becoming part of their narrative, no interest in being obligated to them in any way.

Ptsd anger comes quick and powerful, once triggered you become an enemy, trauma does not forgive.

Survival mode means exactly that, mundane life is a battlefield for abused kids.

We have always had danger outside and inside our heads.

I have found with age and my body deteriorating, being weaker, PTSD has gained power.

When your beat violently and mercilessly for just being a kid, that is hard-wired in my brain.

How much of that do you think therapy is going to fix?

What percentage of seriously abused kids, suffering extreme violence or sexual abuse heal?

The world is filled with people suffering from PTSD who had decent childhoods but later suffered a crisis.

Many of them never heal, so we are the extreme cases.

Some abused kids end up in jail, addicted, dysfunctional as outcasts, having anger and emotional regulation issues.

My emotional regulation issues are increasing, I am more reactive and sensitive as I age.

Ptsd exploits any weakness it finds.

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Different impressions of Ptsd

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My daughter has a child psych degree and years of experience in the research of children.

We differ on certain things, her impression of intrusive thoughts is much more benign than mine.

She sees control with practice and the pattern of thoughts changing over time. I agree until we get triggered, survival mode tells a much different story.

Intrusive thoughts become the monster.

She thinks community and trust are important while being a loner, being more isolated, and not trusting have a negative impact.

Can not say I disagree with that, how many seriously abused kids trust or have a positive community around them.

Many abused kids go to prison as adults, is that the community that helps heal? Check out the ACE study detailing all the extra diseases, mental disorders, and early death.

She thinks the brain has plasticity but changing hard wiring from childhood is near impossible.

Plus thinking we can reverse the damage of abuse, the larger size of the amygdala or the undersized hippocampus is never going to happen.

I agree wholeheartedly.

As she says hurt people end up hurting other people.

There is a percentage that repeats the abuse of childhood on their kids.

She pushes me to find a hobby, join a group, take a class, make attachments and go meet people.

This terrifies me as I hear her words, the risk sends me in the opposite direction.

I am not like others, I am not part of the crowd and have no desire to participate.

I can give you a list of groups that ended with me leaving, triggered, and pissed.

My trust has the depth of the kiddie pool, I have a toe in the water but the other is ready to bolt for home at the first sign of PTSD.

We must see how irrational we are, how frustrating being our friend can be.

My daughter told me it was hard putting up with “My Crazy Ass.”

I wholeheartedly agree.

It is so humbling that damage in childhood still steals my well-being at 70.

I did not sign up to be abused when I was the most vulnerable and dependant in my life.

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We have come to call these shattering experiences trauma.


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Sometimes we encounter experiences that so violate our sense of safety, order, predictability, and right,

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that we feel utterly overwhelmed—unable to integrate, and simply unable to go on as before.

Unable to bear reality.

We have come to call these shattering experiences trauma.

None of us is immune to them.

—Stephen Cope
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