Tuesday, July 2, 2013

The Background Story

The purpose of this entry is to provide some context so you can better understand who I am and why I am writing this blog.

It is clear to me that my life is at a crossroads.  My diagnosis of PTSD last week has left me with the overwhelming feeling that I now need to fashion a new reality for myself...one that is far more nurturing and gentle than what I have known at other times in my life.  There have been moments in the last week when I felt this thick complex of emotions within myself...and then I wondered if the diagnosis might somehow catapult me into an early mid-life crisis.  That may seem all very melodramatic to a reader completely unfamiliar with me but if you should elect to follow my writings on my journey you may be surprised.  Now I am going to be blunt.

I lost my birthmother at a very early age due to her descent into the illness of schizophrenia.  There have been people in my life whom I would not wish to see again due to past unpleasant interactions. And yet even in the case of these people some might call my "worst enemies" (I prefer to think I have no such 'enemies') I would not wish upon them that which I experienced as a very, very little child.  Schizophrenia is a most unfortunate disease; I offer my voice as one among many whose life has been profoundly affected by this disease.  I have done psychotherapy earlier in my life to address other obstacles that I have been challenged to confront on my life journey.  And yet all the therapy I have done has apparently not completely removed the burden of sadness and grief I have carried within me.

Some of my earliest conscious memories are of my mother's descent into illness.  I do not know many people who have suffered through this illness; I can thus only speak authoritatively about my own experience.  From what I recall my mother's deterioration did not progress in a linear way.  There were periods of relative calm punctuated by intense emotional outbursts and rages.  It was terrifying and debilitating for those intimately involved in what unfolded.

Now, many years later, I am awakening to the realization that the emotional impact of what I experienced so many years ago never fully left my psyche or body.  I have previously trained in massage therapy and Reiki.  I have had some amazing teachers and mentors.  And I can confidently say from my own life experience, my own work with others and my observations of the world that we do ourselves a tremendous disservice when we fail to look at the individual human being (or the planet for that matter) in a holistic way.  I thus say it is a relative fallacy to set up a duality between psyche and body.  And it is most unfortunate that such a 'split' worldview has been perpetuated in the present age.  I will come back to this point later...many a time I expect.  And so there you have one aspect of my own worldview...you cannot cleave anything from anything else fully and completely and still see a complete picture.  All is interconnected.  Now back to my story.

To come to the realization that memories lodged in the cells of my being are now coming into my waking consciousness is quite a realization.  As I have come to this realization I have experienced a predictable range of emotions you might expect any person with PTSD to have: awe, anxiety, fear, sadness, anger and so on.

In the last week, as I have exerted enormous effort to reframe my life to promote my own healing, I have reached within my memory for imagery from compelling movies, television shows, music and so on to find a way to more effectively convey the emotions that I have been feeling in this last week.  One of my favorite shows was the X-Files.  I won't regurgitate the series' entire storyline...you can google that to learn more.

I leave you tonight with a clip of a time in the series that surfaced in my consciousness in this last week.  The emotional tone of the scene conveys what I am experiencing.  Like Agent Scully, I am experiencing a profound awakening.  I have no idea where I am going.  What I DO know with certainty is that my life will never be the same again!

Blessings upon those who read this...


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I invite you to accompany me as I document my own journey of healing. My blog is designed to offer inspiration and solace to others. If you find it of value I welcome you to share it with others. Aloha!