If you have not yet read, or listened to Mac McClelland read her own article, please, take a moment to do so now:
My most beloved mentor Brannan, and her mentor, Danna, amongst others, including myslef, reveal intimate details about living with PTSD.
It is an akward thing, reading about yourself, in a magazine, and then online. It is the ultimate surrender. Here, I can dictate what I say and I can paint you the picture I am wanting you to see. To give your story to another person, you spend a lot of time praying. Praying for a lot of things. I was happy to read the magazine when it came to my door. Mac did a wonderful job. She poured herself into this and it shows. She did her research. She did right by us. She was able to get the real point across. BECAUSE WE LOVE THEM. And we see the good in them. There is so much good. Anyone who knows my husband can attest to that. In fact, I often think there is more good in him then me, as my uncle told me once, "You know, you think you are saving him, but he, Katie, he saved you." And with that he got into his entirely way to hip car and drove to the pet spa to pick up his Bassett.
I stood there, jaw agape, wanting to cry, wanting to spit nails, wanting to say "Yes, I do believe you are right."
I recently posted on Facebook about trauma, and how his trauma is bringing up some really deeply buried pains of my own. A sexual assault in 2001 in a basement of some guys house. I thought I had tucked them away fairly securely, but not so. His trauma is highlighting mine. So my post was about being sure to not layer your trauma. Humans cannot get through this life unscathed, and it is imperative to not bury it, and then add more trauma later. Work on your demons.
It is unfortunate that I did not. However, there are some mighty fine angels on this earth who donate time, energy, resources, to people like me. People through Give an Hour, and Not Alone. Another woman who has her own practice south of me. Angels.
I never had the time to lick my wounds from that assault, and now that I really look, I see they are still there, still weeping. And so it is through my husbands trauma, that I realize, I am still broken. I don't go to the basement of my house, and I never could figure out why until recently. We had our bedroom down there for a brief time, and let me tell you, that was the least amount of sleep I had ever gotten. I was extremely hypervigiliant. Every bump, every voice, every creak, I was wide awake.
I sleep better now. But we'll talk about sleep and ptsd another time.
It is through his struggle, his memories, his flashbacks, that I remember my own. I don't exactly understand why that is, but it is what it is. I have no choice now, but to walk through this.
I have been kissed by the universe on the top of my head, almost like the world is saying, Its okay now, to talk about it. It doesn't make it easy, and I can assure you I'm not in my basement right now, but I am much more aware.
After reading books like The Long Walk by Slavomir Rawicz, and The Shack by WP Young, I find myself wondering how I can still be hurting. Look at what others have had to endure, why am I so weak? For a while, the books made me feel much better about things, almost as if my situation really wasn't that bad after all, and I was being silly, a self entitled little brat. But the wounds, they are still there. You can't compare your trauma to someone else's, and you certainly can't compare barefoot trekking through Siberia to rape.
So I stop trying to make sense of it all. What I know is that my husband and I, though each with our imperfections, though each with our demons, love eachother, and no matter how imperfect that love is, we always keep together. Perhaps we are unknowingly saving eachother. Little does he know, he doesn't need saving. He really is that good of a guy. He is amazing. He is the door holding, yes ma'am, type of a guy through and through.