I have two types of people in my life. Those that have known me for a long time, and those that are relative newcomers.
The people in my life that I've known for over ten years have seen me fall down, pick myself up, and carry on. There are a handful who have seen me do it numerous times, from the very first time 12 years ago, when the light of hope that lived in my heart had been extinguished, and my strength to carry the facade that I had been living behind ceased. And with it, my will to live.
Apparently the universe had other ideas when my psyche shattered 12 years ago, and sent me an angel who rescued me from myself. A month later, after 17 days in the local psych ward, and two weeks away resting, the light of hope had been reignited, albeit, a tiny little flame, the façade had been laid down for good, and the real VICKY took her first few faltering steps out into the world, to live in all her authenticity.
Its been a journey these last 12 years, full of triumphs, victories and tears. Marked throughout it have been periods of time when I have fallen down and travelled through the dark tight space that I now understand to be my amygdala, the part of my brain responsible for processing emotions relating particualy to survival, and determining where memories will be stored. It is this part of my brain that switches into overdrive when certain events trigger it, and responds with overactive fear response. I used to call it my impending sense of doom. Now I call it what it is - Complex - Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
What's the difference between Complex PTSD and PTSD? That's an answer I went in search of when I fell back into trauma in March last year. I needed to know why that wench anxiety had its tight grip around my throat - yet again! And why does it keep happening??
Everything I had read about PTSD indicated that after the trauma that had triggered PTSD had been processed, "normality" returns. How come my "normal" keeps getting disrupted, time and time again??