Having PTSD has taught me numerous and countless lessons in my life so far but the ones I have the most problems fixing or correcting seem like they should be the simplest to overcome. Remembering to eat, or that I’m hungry, forgetting to set out something for dinner, the piles of random items placed with the intentions of one day making it to their assigned designation, the forgotten medication, freshly washed laundry still in the machine two days after you started them; I could probably keep going, but just simple things I used to take for granted that seem like such a massive accomplishment now.
I know it gets annoying and is hard to live with. I’m reminded fairly often by multiple people, so it isn’t just one person that notices. How I’m late everywhere I need to be, I don’t communicate effectively, I don’t know what social barriers are acceptable to cross with new people, and I either end up intimidated and shutting down or freaking them out to the point that they just disappear. Shutting down and being numb are no strangers to me.I spent so many years that way because the few times I did try to talk about it at various times in my life, I’ve always been asked to stop when I brought it up. Was I sure? What responsibility did I place on myself for putting myself in that position? Did I try to fight? Why didn’t I tell anyone in charge? The would have, should have, could haves already consume me daily since they happened. They are not something I have never thought about. But they are absolutely things that I could not control because ultimately the responsibility comes down to the person committing the action. I thought being quiet was the only acceptable thing to do about my past because after talking to others about my experiences and their rejection, it was really the only way for me to survive.
This afternoon my husband was snippy as is pretty typical during the work week, and for the obvious aforementioned reason of lack of housework I already don’t get done being the main troublemaker. Anyhow, we were discussing things and he made a blunt statement, that no one wants to hear about my past, I’m a very boring person (I know I am a nerd, but I still think this one is debatable), and I guess now that I’m not instant messaging with others, all I want to do is spend time on Facebook or this blog. I get it, my past isn’t pretty, but it is what made me, me. How am I ever supposed to heal from past wounds if I’m never allowed to grieve them, let them out, accept them, rediscover the person that was left in the aftermath, and continue to attempt to live a fulfilling life if I keep shoving all of it down for only my brain to consume itself with?
It is hard for me to feel comfortable in many situations while trying to act like everything is fine on the outside but all I want to do is run and hide on the inside. I think I have to get out my past troubles before I can get back to the basics of living the life that I desire. I hope by using this outlet as my means of healing, I will be able to make more meaningful connections with people in the future, that are fulfilling and nurturing on both ends. When people ask me why I think and feel the way I do about things that are so different from the views I held as a child, but then make no attempt to meet me where I am at presently in my life, it makes it really hard for me to answer them. I usually end up saying something to the effect of “the eyes can’t change what they have seen and the ears can’t un-hear the things they were told.” I can adapt my beliefs to fit my new world beliefs, but I cannot and I never will be the person I was before the Navy and I wouldn’t want to be. PTSD and all.