Healing, Trauma, Emotions, a Patients' View on Post Traumatic Stress

07/31/2010 updated 08/04/2014

Healing, Post Traumatic Stress, Triggers, Healing, Hope

There are psychiatric terms for a disease or malady, called Post Traumatic Stress Disorder or Syndrome . It is likely referred to by professionals and laypersons as PTSD or PTSS.

I am not not a professional, but have sought professional help for this. I sought wellness, and cures for my emotional and mental issues over the years . As with most other humans, I've experienced several traumatic blows.

What happens is an occurrence or event strikes a human deeply, for sometimes unknown reason, but it will always be there. Some healers call it, body or deep tissue memories .

Soldiers who see battle almost always have residue affects. There are some people who are able to handle it, compartmentalize it, and live healthy and fruitful, while another soldier, standing five feet away from those who cope, can be tormented for decades or a life time. It is what is witnessed. What picture flashed - how deeply it is remembered - felt.

People with no sense of protection, are more likely to repeatedly fall into familial patterns of unhealthy or mismatched relationships. It is natural to lean toward what is familiar. This does not mean they prefer or seek abuse, they do not know any other way.

Those who would lay blame on a person for falling into these patterns is operating as a hurtful or damaging entity.


You Can Heal Yourself

For Years, Only Veterans Were Diagnosed

For decades, PTSD was solely associated with War Veterans, and it has not been used to up treatment of War Veterans probably affected by said Syndrome. PTSD has only recently been addressed in civilian society in the U.S.This is because this diagnosis is based on the patients trauma, and it would have to be classified as a life threatening event.

When a person meets terrible circumstances, their body is constantly at alert, and certain triggers can bring the past, and injurious episodes back instantly. Most research has been compiled by cases of Veterans of War...In the past few years, psychologists have found that Post Traumatic Stress is not isolated to Veterans of War.

Survivors of violence, rape, incest, robbery , kidnapping, abandonment , and other heart / mind wrenching episodes , may experience Post Traumatic Stress (PTS) ...If a person is beaten to a bloody pulp, 12 years ago, and the song Don't Worry, Be Happy was playing in the background, whenever the victim hears that song, their blood pressure will rise, heartbeat will increase, Panic can easily set in. Years later , and far away from the beating, Hearing,Don't Worry Be Happy , may cause distress. The long-ago victim may consider it a strange reaction, but it is not.

One of the problems in understanding, or making the connection is that when someone survives tragedy, the wonderful human mind and body have done everything to get you through it.

A victim may not even realize the song was playing in the background when the Beating was occurring, and may they may not understand their own "crazy" reactions.

The victim, hopefully survives, moves on, and perhaps gets counselling. Although counselling goes well, and a person is mostly well adjusted, whenever that song comes on, her body and mind will react as if she were in the rape once more. Our minds and bodies get us through tragedy, but these triggers can bring us back to the feeling of helplessness and terror. Fast heartbeat, crying, being appalled by sexual activity with a trusted partner. Anyone who has experienced grave trauma will benefit from specific PTSD counselling.

In 2002, I lost my youngest daughter to a car wreck. I have great faith in a higher power, but was in need of support. Along with the millions who have health insurance, that is too expensive to use, I searched and found a 12-Step program as a support system.

It was during this time, while reading and pouring through the literature, I found stories of those who suffered for years diagnosed, they spoke about Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome (PTSS).

The more I learned about it, the more I actively searched for counselors who offered this type of counselling. At the time, the only counselling available was geared toward Veterans.

Seek and you will find...

I located one practitioner, who offered counselling for PTSD. It took some juggling to make contact, when I did, she let the Counselor know, that I could only afford one session. The Counselor charged $125.00 per hour.


Dr. Joy DeGruy - Post Traumatic Slave Syndrome

I Needed the Reader's Digest Version of PTSD Counselling

I asked the nice counselor Jill, to please give this to her in the Reader's Digest Condensed® version. In A Nutshell. Ms. Jill did an excellent job. It is my desire to share what I learned, to pass on this helpful knowledge. Hoping this will help others find their own path to wellness and peace.

I have a burden for the younger people, because adults are given the responsibility of protecting these gems. Children often do not have words to describe what is happening to them, or they bury it for survival purposes. Later, as adults we have issues .

When something terrible happens to a person , it may be buried for a time, but until the terror, sadness or trauma is "Felt", it will continue to pick at the wound. It will not go away without a few tears and some pain.

As a child, I had the bad luck to have a mean and spiteful babysitter. She burned and scarred my little hands, front and back. That was a lesson to me, not to play around the ironing board.

I was very young, and cannot recall everything. There are some dark and frightening moments that have found there way to the surface. She liked smothering me, give me air,smother...while I type this, I can feel physical affects, like quickness of heartbeat, shortness of breath, and a reluctance to revisit.

Sharing this, I feel scared, and a little panicky. Years away from that abuser, I am no little helpless child any longer, but the trauma remains. It is no longer a mysterious ailment that pops up during a innocent conversation, or brings fear for seemingly no reason.

I continue toward healing, and have worked through many things. One example, for the sake of others, is; The Babysitter used to say, "I want to talk to you later Lori! She would play this out for hours or days. It was torment, because she took pleasure in then tearing me down.


"...I Need to Talk to You Later About Something..."

When I became an adult, at the job, in a loving relationship or friendship, if someone would say, Lori,"I need to talk to you later about something", I would begin a slow descent into hell.

Blood pressure, heart rate, depression.

Before the PTSS counselling, I did not associate these sorrowful feelings with anything other than life being unfair, and people were out to hurt me. Unaware, those simple words, transported me right back to a defenseless child who was going to be harmed mentally and maybe physically.

By learning that past trauma can remain buried deep in our minds, hearts and tissue, and getting an ah-ha moment when you can learn to grip your response with what you now know. Knowing is half the battle, or a third or whatever the measurement is.

Understanding is the beginning of healing. The other thing the Brave psychologist taught Lilly, is the opposite of storing trauma, and that is the stored Good Memories and experiences.

My favorite thing in the world is to be in the woods during the Fall, going into the Ozark mountains. I will locate a giant Oak tree, snuggle down into her mighty roots and imagine a loving Mother that is protecting me from everything. The scents of the Ouachita Forest are forever etched deep in my tissue memory. From there my ears can hear, relating to the heart, the song of Piney Creek. Other sounds and smells can bring me back to the feelings of safety and happiness in moments. It brings me calming and peace whenever I thinks of it, or I am there.

Those who have had it rough, and have deep tissue memories of horror, has a positive weapon ready to be made. Make or Recall good feelings, and happy moments.

If there is even one time you were safe, or had someone step in and stop the terror, think about that Good. Anyone who escaped from a kidnapping, or recovered from a beating due to the brave actions of a loving person, can imprint the healing memories to counter the Stressful memories.

I hope this helps, if even one person. We are all in this together . If we are blessed enough to survive hell, we can bless others in letting them know that people do survive, and can thrive.

If one person can go on to have a decent life, then everyone has the same chance. Often, it depends on us.

I recently experienced a reunion with someone who helped me during her childhood . They were empathetic to me as a child, because she was abused growing up. It had been 30 years, and upon their reunion, I learned that the person who helped me, back then, was still tormented by an abusive parent who had passed. They felt like that parent had "ruined" their life...

I was shocked that she who had the tools available, to move on, she stayed in torment. We are only ruined if we decide to let our experience ruin us.

My life is not perfect, and I admit to issues needing work, but my life is not ruined. I am blessed and lucky to be alive.


Deep tissue massage, healing

© 2010 Lori J Latimer

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Comments 28 comments

katiem2 profile image

katiem2 6 years ago from I'm outta here

I love this, Knowing is half the battle, or a third or whatever the measurement is... great and helpful insights. Thanks and Peace :)


Sage Williams profile image

Sage Williams 6 years ago

Lily- You did an amazing job writing this hub. PTSD, body and/or cell memories can be very difficult for anyone who hasn't experience it to understand. You gave some excellent examples through your writing.

I can't imagine ever losing a child. I do hope you continue to reach out to others through your writing.

Hugs and blessings to you with your healing. Keeping the positive flow is so important.

Sage


LillyGrillzit profile image

LillyGrillzit 6 years ago from The River Valley, Arkansas Author

Thank You katiem2

Thank You Sage - I have read your heartfelt writings on this - and appriciate your kind comments. Like you, i hope to bring healing and understanding to those who don't understand "odd" reactions to certain stimulus...Bless and Thank You again.


Maryanne Maguire profile image

Maryanne Maguire 6 years ago from Santa Monica, CA

I've read where our soldiers come home with this (anyone's soldiers, really!) Important to get help. GOod info!


LillyGrillzit profile image

LillyGrillzit 6 years ago from The River Valley, Arkansas Author

Thank you MaryanneM for your helpful comment! :0)


Dorsi profile image

Dorsi 6 years ago from The San Francisco Bay Area

Beautiful and well written hub. Sharing your experiences releases the power of the bad and opens up healing for yourself and others through you...

Thank you for sharing.


LillyGrillzit profile image

LillyGrillzit 6 years ago from The River Valley, Arkansas Author

Thank you Dorsi for taking time to read this Hub, and leave such an encouraging comment. I do appriciate it!


Maryanne Maguire profile image

Maryanne Maguire 6 years ago from Santa Monica, CA

Good info. Going form survivor to thriver, that's key!


LillyGrillzit profile image

LillyGrillzit 6 years ago from The River Valley, Arkansas Author

Thank you MaryanneM! Thanks for stopping by and giving feedback. :0)


ecoggins profile image

ecoggins 6 years ago from Corona, California

Thank you for your openness and transparency with such a sensitive subject. I am sure your words will be comforting for many others and give them courage to face their traumatic experiences as well and gain healing.


LillyGrillzit profile image

LillyGrillzit 6 years ago from The River Valley, Arkansas Author

Thank you ecoggins. I remember being in times of distress and even suicidal, because I didn't understand why I reacted to things...In some ways I feel that by surviving impossible odds, it allows me to help others who are searching and grasping for answers. I do hope this openness does that. Peace.


LillyGrillzit profile image

LillyGrillzit 6 years ago from The River Valley, Arkansas Author

Ms. Katiem2, I want to thank you again for coming, reading and commenting. You are very sharp and smart; for understanding-Thanks, Peace


kims3003 6 years ago

Excellent writing! I have added your story to one of my recent hubs about PTSD. (the link). Very well done.


LillyGrillzit profile image

LillyGrillzit 6 years ago from The River Valley, Arkansas Author

Thank you MsKims3003, thank you for linking this Hub! I will check it out! Again thanks. I look forward to reading your Hubs


tash27 profile image

tash27 6 years ago from Australia

Your story is so emotional for me because i have been diagnosed with PTSD too. I just wrote my first hub titled "Survivors of Child Abuse" And would love you all to read it and let me know your thoughts. We have to break the silence. May peace be with you. Thank you for having the courage to speak so honestly.


LillyGrillzit profile image

LillyGrillzit 6 years ago from The River Valley, Arkansas Author

tash27, I will be glad to read your Hub. Thank you for sharing as well. Sometimes diagnosis is more than half the battle...when a person realizes they aren't freaked out for no reason, it begins Healing!


Sweetsusieg profile image

Sweetsusieg 6 years ago from Michigan

Well now I have my answers. I always wondered why I have been the person that I have, why my heart hurts for those that have mothers who walked away. I now know, it's the future for those kids that I have feared. I did my best by them to be the mother that they never had, for as long as I could.

I am so sorry for your pain, I can only pray that you find healing, total healing and your wounds will become distant memories.

I'm here when or if you need me.


LillyGrillzit profile image

LillyGrillzit 6 years ago from The River Valley, Arkansas Author

dear sweetsusieg, thank you for the kind words and intentions! I will always accept well-wishes for my best :0). this summer i was blessed to receive Reiki healing for many deep wounds. of course it is a hub! i will tell some about it soon. :0) I am thankful for the read and beautiful comments.


gg.zaino profile image

gg.zaino 5 years ago from L'America

Hey Lori, great expose' on Trauma and Abuse! That Lilly gal knows disparity as well fortune, so glad she made it home..:}

Knowing the ropes doesn't always cut though does it lady? I'm so happy to be your friend. Survival at times may seem precarious at best, but that inner child still needs to be fed. The teats of discretion and wisdom have forged a tough ole gal named Lilly.

- Peace Sister ~ Write on! :}


LillyGrillzit profile image

LillyGrillzit 5 years ago from The River Valley, Arkansas Author

greg, your comment this morning, brought tears to my eyes, and a laugh to my belly! I love you and your strong little family. I am richer for knowing you, Elliott and Libby! The very best, my brother


gg.zaino profile image

gg.zaino 5 years ago from L'America

HUGS!!! :)


LillyGrillzit profile image

LillyGrillzit 5 years ago from The River Valley, Arkansas Author

greg, Thanks for the Hug!


Photography7777 profile image

Photography7777 5 years ago from FL

I suffer from Ptsd. Never had a protective person help me through any of the things that happened to me in the past and to this day do not have any family members who are protective of me, I just get put-downs, insults, threats or shown how much I'm in the way.

Anyway, this was a great Hub and Thankyou so much for writing it :]


LillyGrillzit profile image

LillyGrillzit 5 years ago from The River Valley, Arkansas Author

Photography7777, thank you for reading this Hub, and I hope it has been some encouragement. For me knowing where odd reactions were coming from helped me not panic about the why...Thank you for the nice comments.


feenix profile image

feenix 5 years ago

LillyGrillzit, thank you for publishing this hub. I am a veteran of the Vietnam War and I saw a lot of action. And when I returned home from Vietnam, I was a very troubled young man -- and the problem back then (1969) was that no real action was being taken to help vets who were suffering the same as I was.

Then, quite fortunately, it was finally discovered that there is a disorder that affects people who have suffered traumatic experiences, and that disorder ended be called Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

And ever since that discovery was made, I have been feeling much better because I have been receiving effective treatment for my condition.


LillyGrillzit profile image

LillyGrillzit 5 years ago from The River Valley, Arkansas Author

@Feenix, I am so happy to hear of your success in moving toward healing, I am glad to have brought you some little comfort. Don't you think that 'knowing' what is happening to us, is a good part of the battle? I hope the very best for your continued healing! :0)


Happyboomernurse profile image

Happyboomernurse 5 years ago from South Carolina

This is a very powerful and moving hub because you shared your personal experience about your original trauma and also about the coping mechanisms you learned.

You are truly an inspiration to others who have PTSD. I particularly loved what you wrote toward the end: "Lilly believes where there is life, there is HOPE. We are only ruined if we decide to let our experience ruin us."

Am voting this hub up and useful.


LillyGrillzit profile image

LillyGrillzit 5 years ago from The River Valley, Arkansas Author

Happyboomernurse, thank you for your feedback. All on the healing road. I appreciate your reading this Hub. :0)

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