A Personal Journey with Complex PTSD
In 2010 I was bedridden with a full-time carer, had zero ability to walk without help, I was unable to talk or take care of myself on any level. The days seemed endless and passed by without me even being aware. What happened? How did I go from being a vibrant mum and wife to no longer having any control over my body, my mind, my life? Would I ever have any control over my life again?
The truth is right up until today (2018) I only have minimal memories of the two and a half years of my life that I was bedridden and incapable of caring for myself. The point that I do remember vividly is lying in bed and coming to the realisation if I was going to be well and return to a healthy, happy and fulfilled life I needed to find a way, I needed to take action, the responsibility was mine.
If I knew then what I know now I may not have left the bed. Hindsight is wonderful, it allows me to fully comprehend just how unwell I had become. At the time I had no idea how much of my cognitive function in my brain I had lost. The cognitive function in the brain allows us to do the simplest of tasks to the most complex of tasks. Just getting out of bed was a challenge, my coordination was minimal and I also had minimal ability to balance.
I became adept at using walls and furniture to lean on, and praying all the way to my computer I wouldn't fall over as I wasn't sure how long it'd take me to get back up again. Those were tough days as I couldn't talk either. My memory for language, for the words I love, was all locked away inside my brain.
The day I made it up and down the hallway four times is now set in my memory. I celebrated quietly within myself knowing that if I could make it out to my computer and back with rests in between four times, then there was hope I could become well and regain my cognitive function and my life again.
I can let you know with absolute honesty that nothing about the last 8 years has been easy, but it's been totally worth every part of developing personal awareness, the tears, the pain, the frustrations, agony and loneliness plus losing everything again along with the building and rebuilding of my authentic self and my life. I now understand I came out of two and a half years in bed with major depressive disorder, anxiety disorder with panic attacks that resemble small seizures and Complex PTSD.
Today, I'm nearly fully recovered, and I can speak, at last. I can finish my study and see clients, I can teach my course and I will achieve my life's dreams to live and work in America, well, between Australia and America. That's a story for another day.
And here's what I know. The Silence Has to Cease. The silence in families where we don't talk about what's happening for us emotionally, mentally, physically, spiritually and sexually has to stop. Being raised in a multigenerational family where silence was the key to being accepted, to belonging, broke my brain.
Being sexually, spiritually and emotionally abused from an age younger than I care to remember created so many events in my life that were recreation after recreation of my childhood trauma. This continued generations of silence breed within our family systems ensuring we as children hold onto way too many unconscious thoughts, emotions and beliefs and our soul, our spirit becomes heavy under the burdens, and we become unwell.
For me, the poison from my family system pervaded every part of me, right down to my spirit. The rebuilding has been intense and I wouldn't wish it on anyone else, let alone my own children. We as adults have to initiate conversations with our children, adults or not, and begin the process now of changing the generations that come after us.
My children have all grown and now live independently. This also is a story for another day how I've raised 3 kids on the Autism Spectrum, overcome the trials of two divorces, received my own Aspergers diagnosis a few years ago and so much more.