Tuesday, July 18, 2017

The Flashbacks Wipe Me Out

I've come a long way in my healing.  I've leaped over mountains.  I've not only survived what was done to me, but I have thrived and I'm conquering new worlds.  Yet, the flashbacks come up every now and then and wipe me out.

The feelings are the first to show up for the flashbacks.  Then it progresses to the hint of the images.  Next the images start to take a shape, and a larger view of what they are follows.

The night time becomes an exercise to convince my eyes that it is okay to close them for a few hours.  I try to coax my brain into turning off long enough to get some rest.  It becomes a tug-of-war, and who wins is anyone's guess.  The winner result will be known when the sun comes up.

As the images, thoughts, feelings, and sensations come on, my mind works feverishly to hide from them.  In this stage, I despise them.  I hate them.  I abhor them.  How dare they sneak into my conscious thought!  How dare they!

At times, I feel like a deer caught in the headlights, not sure what to think or what I'm seeing.  At times, I just sit there bewildered and caught off guard as if my thoughts are a million light years away.

My mind tries to rationalize the flashbacks as if there was some way to make sense of them.  There is no way these images are real, I scream violently back to them.  There is no way this could have happened.  "Are you so stupid that you would think they would," I chastise myself.

Yet, myself laughs at the ridiculousness of my aversion to the flashbacks.  It knows more than I see and sees more than I know.  Yet I'm not about to give up the control.  I'm not about to hand over the keys to something I don't know exists.  No way - no how!

Then I read an article in the paper about some father sexually abusing and torturing his 7 year old daughter.  My eyes turn to rage.  I want to make that father suffer as much as he made his 7 year old daughter suffer.  For I know that this will forever change her and it will be something she has to deal with for the rest of her life.  I try to silence my rage and anger, for they will lead me down a path that will not be good.  I can only hope they lock him up for good, but I know all too well, that often the child abusers get very little punishment if at all.

The flashbacks don't stop.

The flashbacks continue.

At times, my body feels like a wrung-out wash cloth ready to be tossed into the garbage.

At times my body feels like an exhausted mess of muscles, tissues and cells all frustrated with another episode of flashbacks that I have to deal with in my life.

This is what my life becomes at times.  This is the horrible world of flashbacks that I live with from all the abuse and torture that was done to me as a kid.  I struggle to write those words because what child would even think a family member could do anything bad to them.  "How dare the child think this?" I scream at myself!  It is hard to accept.

The images aren't pretty.  It isn't only my mind that remembers.  It is the physical reactions I can see in my legs and across my skin.  It is the shivering one minute, followed by heat and sweating the next.  It is the rash that shows up.  It is the burning that I feel one minute, followed by nothing the next.

Some days I wonder if I've gone crazy.  Some days I am so tired of dealing with flashbacks that I despise the air I breathe.  Some days, I just don't feel strong enough to face them.

Yet, I know - that this too shall pass.  One of these days, things will calm down.  Yes, I know, I've got more to work through in my life and when I get through these things, there will be greater peace.

Today, that all seems like a dream.

Today, I will hold on to that dream.

Today, I feel wiped out.

(From my journal on 6/22/17)

Blog Post And Images (c) 2017 by Don Shetterly
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