Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a diagnosis I keep to myself. PTSD does not impact my life much, though I know I have a small issue with the symptoms. A long time ago, I was in a hospital elevator and the tall, thin man that entered sent my mind reeling. Fearful, I escaped the elevator and kept running down the hallway, looking over my shoulder for the man. My heart was racing, and my vision was odd, as though I were in a tunnel and the area outside my direct vision was blurry. It reminded me of a scene in a movie. Today I had a reaction hearing a motorcycle start and take off. I felt chills down my spine and my body quivered. Reminders of a small piece of the brokenness of my mind.
I don’t want to remember.
My intentions were to leave the trauma and memories in the past. Most days I am successful. On this day I heard the sound of that bike take off, and I physically reacted, leaving me baffled. I hear the roar of motorcycles all the time, and I pay no attention. I note that I have struggled maintaining sleep patterns the last few months, and I have some anxiety affecting my chest. I wonder why these symptoms are arising at this time. Unfortunately, answers elude me. This is the after effects of trauma.
My childhood is years in the past, still I carry the it with me. I worked a lifetime to let it go. However, here it sits, dead center in the middle of my world. No one close to me knows I am struggling. With a full life of work, family, church, and my other life happenings, I mask the truth. Honestly, I have no need to live this way. I fight to stay strong. I came to terms with my abuse years ago, dealing with the ‘trauma’. Satan uses our junk to come at us and attack. He knows our weakness and will take advantage anywhere he sees an in.
My goal, to prepare for battle. Satan is not stronger than He who lives in me. I don’t want to remember life at 8, 9 or 10. Yet, it seems we don’t have a choice. Sitting at my desk, doing my work, a motorcycle drove by. The driver on that bike is a stranger to me and never hurt me. That man was out enjoying the beautiful weather. Today is June 6, 2019, I am a grown adult. Living in the life God has blessed me with, and I am not a victim. I am a survivor.
“You can recognize survivors of abuse by their courage. When silence is so very inviting, they step forward and share their truth so others know they aren’t alone.”
― Jeanne McElvaney, Healing Insights: Effects of Abuse for Adults Abused as Children