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Topics - milk

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Checking Out / Signing off permanently
« on: December 20, 2018, 10:15:20 PM »
Your stories and insights about living with trauma have helped me to know myself better: strengths and vulnerabilities. Thank you. I am unmasking my symptoms of cPTSD and using healthy coping mechanisms to rewrite my thinking — I feel better, stronger, more confident, and able to let the *heavy emotions play with the light ones — this is the best gift OOTS has offered me; my skin is thickening* against the blunt nature of the madness we see in this world and I trust what I know to get through.

Thank you three roses, kizzie, Cookido, boy22, and so many others for your presence and resilience.

I will sign off with a few truths about my time here:

I have only one profile in this forum — its milk
I engaged with this forum objectively and at times subjectively based on personal experience
If emotion took over — timeout and rewriting my posts helped me through
All the stories I shared were true with original names changed and identifying specifics mostly absent
And finally I will sign off with my name

All the best to the members of the forum


*letting anger and sadness push through to solace — my anger was not seen too much here; I work through it on long hikes in the wilderness

*a healthy balancing layer of letting go and compassion

Building Protective Factors / Body Work (*possible TW)
« on: December 11, 2018, 07:06:28 PM »
My intention in this thread is to post a statement about how the human body relates to trauma and to open an inquiry about ways that we can return to knowing ourselves authentically through body awareness (proprioception). Building resiliency comes to mind when I think of our *physical nature, so this heading seemed appropriate for the thread. I also wanted to thank a member for posting an honest comment about their body — it inspired me to post this thread with careful attention to how we approach this subject: with respect and attunement towards health.

*physical nature: how our body survives trauma and how we return it to balance on our own with the support of a Rolfer (movement specialist), Seasoned Yoga Instructor, or others in this field.

The statement
I believe the human body is phenomenal because it is *foul and magnificent, regardless of how I feel about it at a given time — which can be thwarted by trauma.

Personal Experience
I have to work on this thwart often, so I can know myself. Letting somatic healing happen is one way I work on restoring sensations that were once lost. Through regular practice I am learning how to self soothe and becoming more aware of what I keep in my body. My experience in somatic healing comes from psychotherapy, hot yoga, meditation, completing the Rolfing series, and from swimming in a cold ocean.

*although this part is mostly attributed to our sense of smell, if we could not smell, what would we have? A substance of some sort. We do need the smell, though. It gives us knowledge - to keep a distance if we don’t know what to do and if we do know what to do, take care of it in a healthy manner.

What are your thoughts on this subject?

Recovery Journals / The Black Hole Journal *possible trigger warning
« on: November 25, 2018, 04:12:11 PM »
Before reading, look below for my post ‘About the journal’. It explains the purpose of this journal so I am not missunderstood.

A black hole is a benighted wonder.

There is a way in and a way out. Sometimes I fall in and other times I jump. In both instances I surrender to a dark narrative. I let it happen because I know the way. My body remembers the past like yesterday and today is screaming silently in front of me. Falling into a black hole and coming out of the other side is a dizzying affair when repeated over and over again.  I don’t want to feel dizzy anymore. Thus the need for the journal, to help me focus on one point so I don’t lose myself — I would like to skip over the hole, instead of falling in.

If I were to skip over the hole, the energy of the present propels me forward. The somberness I feel is a valid response to what is in front of me. At times I witness sad things. Thoughts come with the somberness, I drop them in the hole as my foot lands on the other side — lets do this again, I need to get the jump right,

          its a skip with one leg forward leading and the other trailing in a swift glide
               it’s a sprint, then a leap with one leg forward leading
               and the other trailing in a swift glide

            (Breathing deeply) and i go — I need to let go of these thoughts. OWWWWWW!
               my foot slipped. It hurts. I noticed a thought. Last night I sat on the edge of the hole.

I imagined other ways I can drop the thoughts —- I will put my hand on my heart and feel what happens.

*There is a soundtrack playing, Nightlights by Edamame. I need the beat to help keep time. Most tracks I listen to are about the beat, it helps me to focus on what I am doing.

*This draft is ongoing till it isn’t.

*I need to visualize what I feel before translating it to an expository reflection about sadness and depression

Successes, Progress? / Drawing a line with someone you love
« on: November 25, 2018, 03:54:24 AM »
Over the holiday I responded to a mass family email with a request to be removed from the list. I wrote about my desire to not take part in ‘generic’  family updates that sugarcoat systemic abuse; offered solutions for healthier ways of relating, references for understanding what it means to love one another, and what I can do to be part of the solution. It felt really good to do this.

Some responses came from a place of anger and missed the point — but there was one that stood out. She apologized and continued to share her experience as part of the problem and the solution. I felt relief and pain in the clarity of her tone. She wrote from an honest place —- I never felt that from her before in words, like a double positive in grammar (does this even exist?). It felt good to read her feelings. It’s the beginning of a conversation, I don’t know where it will lead but I believe in the connection and the sharing.

The progress I felt came from showing myself to people I love and holding out for the precious part; believing in myself and letting go of the result, so I could be surprised —-  letting the abusive rhetoric fall away.

General Discussion / Can a mind become gifted after injury? TW*
« on: November 09, 2018, 05:20:41 AM »
When I was young I could remember details that most would not care for - too many details. I played alone mostly in the woods by the house in a big city — with made up kingdoms in the trees I climbed. I learn through touch and movement. Over the years, it was external stimuli that injured me repeatedly in the family unit and from public interaction (teacher abuse and police harassment at eight years) I coped, as kids do - found hacks and lived on.

I am unsure if the way I processed information was innate or an outcome from resolving abuse, maybe both. But something funny happened and I didn’t realize it till I was much older — I can recognize patterns in language and respond accordingly but the conscious part of my brain doesnt pick it up till a bit later, I thought this was related to emotional dysregulation (a cPTSD symptom) but now I think it falls on the Autism Spectrum

does anyone else have this problem?

With all that written, did I put this in the wrong forum?

General Discussion / I got milk, have some. TW*
« on: October 23, 2018, 03:32:50 AM »

“Any black woman who has spent extensive time in the U.S. will develop some form of PTSD” she professed, after I shared my story. She is my therapist, a doctor of psychology with practice in war torn communities. “I see your struggle, I see your strength” (me: breaking a smile after a tear)

Aside: this post is best heard through the Amour track by Phelian, the Quadruvium Album

This city is sure ugly but you know what — in the last month I have met some genuine folk, soberly infectious, just enough to awaken something in me. I need good people, I cant do it alone — these folk remind me of that. I may be triggered everyday and a bit hyper-vigilant, rightly so, yet I know myself so much, that I can catch a downward spiral mid-air and flip it to a changed reality that takes me where I want to go. I am on my way spiraling and flipping.

For those of you who may feel lost — this post is for YOU and the reality you imagine.


General Discussion / (Crying)
« on: October 17, 2018, 06:20:47 AM »
Because I am sad.

I am grieving a loss of humanity I see - and in my own family: knowing my M (an emotional abuser) may not have long to live (its premature and a result of knowing too much violence), seeing people hurt one another in the street (loss of integrity), listening to the suffering of people I know and love.

These feelings are just below the surface - it changes my pace when I am in  “doing mode“  (the act of daily living - I saw this in a post and borrowed it) — I have to find a bathroom or pull to the side of the road to cry.

After a good cry I feel better. many times something strange happens  (like a flock of 20 flying parrots swooping down to perch on a wire above me, a freak lightening storm in the desert town I live in, or a strangers gaze tells me he understands without knowing the details)  and I feel calm or laugh like in the bird scenario, this returns me to who i am  (I let go of the story behind the tears so I can free up what is possible, another way to look at a situation ) — I step back into life, the pace of being there, showing up. I may not be 100% but I am willing.

I am sharing this because it is part of where I am in recovery. Not a setback but a growth spurt.

Hugs are welcome. I dont need advice.

Hello all —-

There was an old thread ‘teens and sex’ that caught my attention. So I decided to update the topic as an invitation to share effective strategies for discussing healthy sex and sensuality with children (age appropriate for the environment the child lives in) and young adults.

In a session with an old T who specialized in sex education —- we came to the conclusive inquiry: Imagine teenagers beginning their sexual lives with healthy experiences. How can we (adult role models) facilitate this?

Please feel free to expand on this, share insights, highlights from something you read, a personal story of strength, anything that feels right for you —-

**My need to start this topic is about celebrating healthy ways to relate to sex and sensuality. At the age of seventeen I made a commitment to myself:  to honor healthy intimate moments with a partner, sometimes the moments would collect and other times, they did not. Doing  this, freed me sexually over time; scratching out memory of multiple sexual assaults that occurred between fifteen and sixteen —- may you all find something to take with you from this read that affects you IRL.


Self-Help & Recovery / Slowing it down
« on: September 15, 2018, 10:59:54 PM »
Last week I met twice with a new T, number six. I think its a good fit.

Up until now, I was losing energy and perspective on my situation - negative thoughts were creeping in and my body was telling me to slow down, to sleep. I needed a good therapist.

T number six:

She is quick: asks good questions notices how I feel and makes accommodations in the space - she responds with meaning behind her action - she has thrown away the book and is taking me as I am. I am letting her do ‘her’ thing because I trust her; she has shown me a little bit of what she is capable of: mind body connection, CBT, holistic assessment (all approaches I respond well too)

The priority is to help me to develop coping strategies (thick skin) for living in a polarized city (nine months in a new city) caught in an imbalance of power that plays out through death, violence, hate, indifference, joy, content, mysticism, and pleasure. I live among civil strife. >:D The nature of my work exposes me to these imbalances. I take care to manage a low risk factor. I am unable to leave the city till my finances clear. In the meantime I engage in work that supports my interests: noting the lifestyles people make and their stories.

The issue and how I deal:

I experience flashbacks daily that take emotional energy to work through - this takes energy away from my forward direction. I am balancing a few major changes in: finances, family, with a love, and in a career direction. Self care comes first and with that I choose my level of interaction of and between these life changes; this comes down to how I am with the people I come across everyday. Living in a ‘charged’ city requires a bit of calm, mindfulness, and care for myself and others. Throughout the day I make time for me — that comes through mindfulness body work whether its 20 minutes or three hours. I love it when I get three hours of body work in, it helps to manage the stress.

I confide in a family member and a close friend for support and its reciprocal. The work I am putting into my close relationships is starting to take shape.  I respect the people in my life and with that their schedules and needs.

Overall I am feeling better after a week of therapy, body work, and visiting OOTS.  I have read stories from a few new members and checked out the cPTSD thread for childhood trauma. I continue to struggle with freeze and flight response, in fact it is blocking me creatively at times, not with writing, but with drawing (main reason why I am with T#6)

Any thoughts on the matter are appreciated - thanks for listening.
If you don’t know how to respond, a group hug will do just fine.

Introductory Post / hello
« on: September 09, 2018, 09:49:51 PM »

I am happy to be here.

About six years ago I realized I had symptoms of cPTSD not PTSD. I made this connection after relocating to a new city, starting a new job, making a new home, eating well, getting good exercise, and  standing (falling) in love. Everything I was doing was right but inside I was an emotional rollercoaster, crying almost everyday (happy and sad tears). I didn’t understand — I had been through years of therapy, self reflection, and  journaling: I was committed to living the best life possible. I was off medication for depression for over fifteen years - why now?

I was triggered and the trauma is complex.

Back then, I found support through a women’s clinic and an ADHD Forum as I was working through a diagnosis — I did not consider joining the PTSD Forum. I cant remember why, it was possibly too much to handle at the time.

Now, I find myself in a new city and the triggers are constant. I knew this would happen when I returned to a city close to my FOO. I am at the point of needing help —- this is what brings me to you all. I am grateful OOTS exists and I am committed to working through my recovery with you all.

I dont feel the need to go into my past history at this time — I will save if for a good discussion, in context to one another’s struggle. I believe in our human capacity to love and in that comes change. Every contribution I make whether passive or active is a step through my recovery which connects me to you. I am appreciative to be in your presence; for your stories and the courage it takes to show up.

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