PTSD, Butterflies, and Amnesia (Guest Post)

The emerging blogger series on Mental Health @ Home -background image of cherry blossoms

In this emerging blogger post, Delilah of Delilah Blossom writes about living with PTSD.

circus stage with elephants
Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay

So I’ve decided to write about Life with PTSD…the good, the bad, the horror, and the insanity.

I’m maybe going to have to write daily or maybe just when I remember things, one thing I have to do now and will never mention again.. the reason I have PTSD.. Someone I loved and considered a best friend.. he shall forever remain nameless and faceless.. violently and ruthlessly took everything from me he destroyed the woman I was and I’m struggling to put myself back together but this writing is not about him he has no power over me and he can’t take any credit for anything that I am today. This writing is about me and my recovery, it’s about me expressing my pain and expressing my triumphs.. sharing my highs and lows in the hope that maybe someday someone will read this and relate, someone will read this and feel that tiny bit less crazy..feel just that tiny bit less alone.. Maybe even stop someone reaching for those meds, or a razor or the bottle.. so how can I explain it?!

Well I absolutely detest having it, I hate the reason behind it and I hate that it’s my mind’s way of coping instead of being strong enough to just deal and move on. At times it’s paralysing, I can’t get out of bed, I can’t look in the mirror, I can’t face the bathroom.. I can’t even remember how I take my tea, I can’t sleep without injuring myself or waking up in panic attacks, there’s too much racing around in my head for me to function.. my brain perceives everything as a threat, absolutely everything becomes a threat, from my cat sneezing or a slight noise behind me. I can’t face people I’m not familiar with for instance, I run like the clappers from my neighbour for absolutely no logical reason other than he’s a friendly gentleman yes he’s a little eccentric and I don’t appreciate him watering the garden topless but hell I’m hardly conservative, my hair is at the minute bright blue and I have on my favourite pair of loud trousers.

Apparently characteristics of PTSD well no… I refuse my character to be defined by that, I’ve always been ridiculously spontaneous and I bought these trousers way back when. I don’t always think my spontaneity and ptsd go well together! I mean maybe a 34 year old woman with bright blue hair climbing trees in the cemetery isn’t what you’d expect to see or when my diazepam sends my mind off into a colourful whirl and I obsess over something until I do it.. this week (2nd Aug 19) I became obsessed with Teresa May running through a wheatfield.. it amused and bewildered me until I did it last week I needed to climb a tree, or my compulsion to get a tattoo.

Maybe the PTSD makes these things stronger but I’ve always being that way I’ve always hated tattoos but I have an ugly scar on my wrist from a failed suicide attempt, my girlfriend likes to call them my battle scars and maybe one day I’ll see them like that but at the minute I hate it it reminds me that I failed.. maybe my subconscious decided to keep me in this torture as punishment for being weak.

Anyway in my fogged up brain I envisioned a beautiful symbolic half sleeve tattoo to cover it.. the reality is I got in Fuck it mode and let my sister start it, just a few blossoms I said thinking if it was shit I could get it covered up.. well yeah it’s shit and I don’t like it.

I also have ridiculously itchy feet.. I like to run not in the exercise way but just away, I refuse that to be a symptom of PTSD too because I’ve always being the same, I love travelling always have and I hope I always will. I hate it when people try to pigeonhole me or label me.. yes I have PTSD yes I need a little help but I am also still me.. there’s still a bit of me that shines through every now and again.. like I say I hate hate hate having it but then on the flip side… there’s well I won’t say fun days because believe me this is far from fun but I do have little reprieves that catch me off guard and make me smile, usually when I’ve had diazepam but not always… Like when I decided to draw on my wall thinking I was the next Van Gogh or something when actually I can’t draw for toffee but you know what? It makes me smile every time I see it, it stirs up those feelings of me coming to the stark realisation that I can’t actually draw and I found myself on my bed crying tears of laughter at it. Or the day I was very slightly ignorantly racist, I was smoking at my kitchen window when I swear I saw a floating malteaser 🤦‍♀️ turns out it was just my neighbors bald head, or I’ll wake up in fancy dress 🤷‍♀️🤷‍♀️

I break every pair of sunglasses I own, I take shortcuts when I have absolutely no clue where I’m going, I put almost everything in the fridge, I find myself constantly surprised, I lose everything under the sun, I fall asleep mid conversation, I have to eat at the most inappropriate times, I forget I have crazy coloured hair, sometimes I forget my shoes and I forget it’s not socially acceptable to go out in public in the fancy dress I’ve woken up in, but these things make me laugh these things are just me they’ve always just been me, I grin a little when I think of them.

I find myself unafraid of anything, I’ll pick up a spider, I’ll say what needs to be said, I’ll do what I need to do and in all fairness I barely care what anyone thinks of it. I’ve managed to cut a few toxic people out of my life, my feelings have become numbed and allowed me to do that.. I’ve realised I don’t need shit horrible people in my life. I’ve had two victories in the past 3 weeks.. I’ve walked around a crowded town centre in just a vest top.. I usually always need a cardie or a jumper.. I also managed to have my headphones in quite loud… I usually have my music on just quietly enough so I can still hear my footsteps.. god forbid someone takes me by surprise and sets off a public display of my crazy.. I also had a horrible anxiety attack in the middle of a crowded railway station I hyperventilated so badly I ended up passing out.. but I didn’t go home, I ignored the bitch in my head, dusted myself off told her to eff off and got on that train.

I’m getting better at coping with my Circus, so when it inevitably rolls back around I go into it armed with small victories and new ways to help myself. The Circus terrifies me, it ridicules me, it hurts me and people I love, it chastises my victories and it hates me and in return I hate myself. But I am getting better at it. One day it will be the greatest show.

Visit Delilah on her blog Delilah Blossom.

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