Here's What I Need To Say About My PTSD

Here's What I Need To Say About My PTSD

Two years later and I need you to know a few things.

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I'm always looking for a distraction. Every single day, I look for a reason to not think about the thing, but I always end up thinking about the thing. If you suffer from PTSD, then you know exactly what I'm talking about.

And as my trauma anniversary approaches, this feeling intensifies even more and suddenly it encompasses my every move. Two years since the incident and I still find myself warped by the memory.

What most people don't understand is how this affects me in daily operations. As my trauma anniversary approaches, I have become tenser. I'm writing this in the height of my yearly freak out.

I want the people who caused this to know a few things:

Firstly, you aren't bad people. You are good people with good intentions, but you can make mistakes, too. The way you impacted me will be something that I can never forget, no matter how hard I try. On the other hand, I think you can forget it. That's the real travesty. That while I spend every day surrounded by thoughts of what happened, you can spend every day doing literally anything else. Despite this though, these past two years have taught me that you are not inherently bad just because you wronged me.

And that being said, just because you are good people does not mean I have to trust you again. That's been one of the hardest things for me to comprehend. You caused me such trauma and such pain and for the longest time, so many people in my life tried to convince me that all this rage I had against you was negated by the good work you did.

I can recognize that while you may be good at heart, you hurt me in such a way that I don't owe you any sort of forgiveness.

Secondly, when you hurt me, you took some of my youth. I believe that maybe I made some mistakes, too. The difference here was that when I messed up, I was a child… you were an adult who stole some of my childhood away from me. I went from learning and being carefree to being bogged down with overthinking and finding ways to afford therapy.

You changed how I saw the world and forced me to become cynical and jaded before my time. Looking back, that part of it didn't hurt me at the moment, but it really hurts me now. I was consumed so badly by this mental disorder called PTSD that I lost so much of my innocence. As an adult now, I can recognize that I'll never be able to get that back. That's all thanks to you. I grew up faster than I ever wanted.

Thirdly, I wonder if you ever think about that day? I wonder if you think about how I asked for medical attention, but received none. I wonder if you ask yourself if things could have gone better. I wonder if when you're in the shower for too long, your mind starts to race as you replay the events. I wonder if you wish you could take it back. And if you don't feel regret, what do you feel about that day?

Fourthly, I listen to a certain song a lot now. It's on repeat some days when things are particularly hard. "Two Years" by Have Mercy is constantly on my mind. Maybe it's just because I'm two years in and have found my entire life warped around that one moment. Or maybe its because my Ed Sheeran playlist that I played on a loop after you ruined me can only help me cope so much.

And fifthly, next time I see you I hope that I can have the courage to finally stand up to you, but I'll probably just put on the same show that I always do. You'll ask me how college is. I'll tell you it's been great. I won't mention how every time I meet someone new I wonder if things will end up the same. I don't talk about how hard it is to be a part of the social scene when it all comes back to me thinking about how alone I was. I'll tell you that I'm adjusting alright and that I'm thinking of joining a new club. I won't let you know that somehow you're still always on my mind.

I bet you wish this message would end happily with an "I forgive you". The truth, however, is that I just don't.

You'll get your forgiveness when you deserve it. You'll get your forgiveness when I stop waking up from night terrors, gasping for air because for the fifth time that week I've relived that entire day start to finish. You'll get your forgiveness when my Facebook memories feature doesn't scare me to check because I don't know what's bound to pop up and trigger a PTSD attack. You'll get your forgiveness if you ever even bother to ask… or apologize… or believe me. You'll get your forgiveness when you stop telling me I'm overreacting. You'll get your forgiveness… but then again, you probably won't.

You won't and that's okay because I'm the one hurting right now and I deserve to be allowed to be in control of my own hurt since you've controlled that for long enough.

Cover Image Credit:

Chris Klogg

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To The Girl Who Had A Plan

A letter to the girl whose life is not going according to her plan.
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“I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul.” - William Ernest Henley

Since we were little girls we have been asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” We responded with astronauts, teachers, presidents, nurses, etc. Then we start growing up, and our plans change.

In middle school, our plans were molded based on our friends and whatever was cool at the time. Eventually, we went to high school and this question became serious, along with some others: “What are your plans for college?” “What are you going to major in?” “When do you think you’ll get married?” “Are you going to stay friends with your friends?” We are bombarded with these questions we are supposed to have answers to, so we start making plans.

Plans, like going to college with our best friends and getting a degree we’ve been dreaming about. Plans, to get married as soon as we can. We make plans for how to lose weight and get healthy. We make plans for our weddings and children.

SEE ALSO: 19 Pieces Of Advice From A Soon-To-Be 20-Year-Old

We fill our Pinterest boards with these dreams and hopes that we have, which are really great things to do, but what happens when you don’t get into that college? What happens when your best friend chooses to go somewhere else? Or, what if you don’t get the scholarship you need or the awards you thought you deserved. Maybe, the guy you thought you would marry breaks your heart. You might gain a few pounds instead of losing them. Your parents get divorced. Someone you love gets cancer. You don’t get the grades you need. You don’t make that collegiate sports team. The sorority you’re a legacy to, drops you. You didn’t get the job or internship you applied for. What happens to you when this plan doesn’t go your way?

I’ve been there.

The answer for that is “I have this hope that is an anchor for my soul.” Soon we all realize we are not the captain of our fate. We don’t have everything under control nor will we ever have control of every situation in our lives. But, there is someone who is working all things together for the good of those who love him, who has a plan and a purpose for the lives of his children. His name is Jesus. When life takes a turn you aren’t expecting, those are the times you have to cling to Him the tightest, trusting that His plan is what is best. That is easier said than done, but keep pursuing Him. I have found in my life that His plans were always better than mine, and slowly He’s revealing that to me.

The end of your plan isn’t the end of your life. There is more out there. You may not be the captain of your fate, but you can be the master of your soul. You can choose to be happy despite your circumstances. You can change directions at any point and go a different way. You can take the bad and make something beautiful out of it, if you allow God to work in your heart.

SEE ALSO: To The Girl Patiently Waiting With An Impatient Heart

So, make the best of that school you did get in to. Own it. Make new friends- you may find they are better than the old ones. Apply for more scholarships, or get a job. Move on from the guy that broke your heart; he does not deserve you. God has a guy lined up for you who will love you completely. Spend all the time you can with the loved one with cancer. Pray, pray hard for healing. Study more. Apply for more jobs, or try to spend your summer serving others instead. Join a different club or get involved in other organizations on campus. Find your delight first in God and then pursue other activities that make you happy; He will give you the desires of your heart.

My friend, it is going to be OK.

Cover Image Credit: Megan Beavers Photography

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This Is Not Your Typical Break-Up Survival Kit

just a mixture of two typical cliches that work best together.

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Everyone has been through a break up at some point, even if it's a friend break up. We've all been there and the truth of the matter is, it hurts. However, as people say, time will make it better. And it's true, all you have to do is take care of yourself and love yourself and things will eventually work out.

1. Comfortable clothing.

At some point during a relationship, fancy clothing is replaced by comfortable clothing. This does not mean to throw on a tight short dress. Instead, to make the transition easier and smoother, attempt to wear cute and comfortable clothing to slowly remind yourself of your self-worth.

The key item to do this is on the underwear. Ladies out there, doesn't lacy lingerie increase your self-confident? After that, it's all about adding more and more clothing items that boost your confidence and say 'see you later' to those sweatpants!

2. Aromatic candles.

Candles are not necessary for romantic set up. They can be used to meditate, do yoga, to relax and take bubble baths while drinking champagne. It makes the setup for a calm self-pampering night, furthermore reason to add face masks and comfortable clothing in the basket! Make sure to avoid scents that could potentially remind you of your ex. Funny twist: grab the candles with hilarious names!

3. Funny mugs.

Humor is the best medicine, and a cup holds your favorite drinks is the perfect combo to start your day! Drink your favorite drink in your favorite new mug and have a little laugh.

4. Homemade item.

Mirror with a positive quote, a calendar full of empowering reminders, and keep in mind that others love you. Take the time to sit by yourself, or with friends, and work on DIY projects to keep busy, even if it's creating a small calendar.

5. Drinks and snacks

Tea! Coffee! And chocolate to give them the boost when they are feeling down and a bottle of wine because it gets stuff at times. I would prioritize more non-alcoholic drinks since it's not healthy in the long run. Drinking tea also allows you to relax and keep your mind at peace.

For snacks, sometimes comfort food and candy is a must. Just take the time to enjoy yourself, who cares about anything else!

6. Face masks

Nothing can go wrong with face masks, after all taking care of your skin says loving and it's fun! The good thing is that you can do it alone or with your friends, with a drink and watching a movie or on a bubble bath as mentioned above (point 2). The beauty of face masks is that it reboots your skin's health. We all love a natural glow.

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