Sunday, June 2, 2013

Love Thy Self

So one of the less cool things about having PTSd (there are cool things?!), is that when it's flared, among other things, I'm in a permanent rage. Doesn't matter how calm I might seem, or what is going on around me, at all times I'm just one wrong phrase... one wrong look... one wrong breeze away from lashing out at everyone around me for the most convenient reason I can come up with.

But worse than the rage fits is that I can feel it happening, and still I can't stop myself. I can't make myself stop snapping at the dog, or blowing up at my friends because of some imagined slight. The best I've ever been able to do is catch myself in the middle of doing it... usually just in time to be too late, but not always.

And how do I forgive myself for that behavior? How do I say that it's ok that I do this because I have PTSD and I don't have control over it? How do I let it go and move on with a new day knowing that yesterday I treated the people I care most about so badly?

The answer is I don't. At least not while I'm in the middle of a flare and everything seems awful...

... but when it has passed, and I feel more like the person I am when the PTSD isn't driving, then I go back to the people I need to and tell them I'm sorry. Then I treat myself to the things that remind me why I'm here and help me to feel good. Then I figure out how I could have done it differently and how I could have given myself more and better support so next time it won't be as hard. But most importantly, I remind myself that I do have Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, and that I don't control it...

...and it doesn't control me.

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