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The Train Derailed

It may seem like an odd phrase, or statement. Especially when speaking about EMDR therapy, but when I explain. It’ll make more sense.

All I have to say is that if/when you do EMDR. Do you research. Find an awesome therapist, someone you can trust, someone who knows what they are talking about and someone who has patience with you, and can gently guide you in a direction that you will have to go.

With that said. When you go through EMDR, they usually have you pick two phrases. One is what is something that you associate with the event. I.E. Guilt, I could have stopped it, I should have done something, etc. The second would be the opposite, so the positive. Something to replace the bad in your mind.

Throughout the process, we had one thought for my positive. After my session this week, after a few derailments. We came to the conclusion, due to the derailments, that my positive phrase changed. It’s not what we thought it should have been. And that is ok. The mind is complicated. It never works quite right for everyone all the time anyways.

It was difficult playing the “film” in my head over and over again, and then letting my mind just go with it. You know, the bi polar, and anxiety in me not letting me give up control, but I did it. I have to. I can’t keep having flashbacks.

They started to return in July. Not to a full extent like they used to, but they caught me off guard for sure. They were more vivid than they were before as well. That’s why my therapist and I think this is the perfect timing to forge ahead with this. After my first session. I’ve had one flashback, no nightmares (that I remember), yet, only minor issues with most sounds (other than the ones I can’t seem to desensitize myself to yet), and…..darn it…my fickle memory. I’ll remember eventually.

Oh, yea, I’ve been able, for the most part, to keep the memories in their little locked boxes in the recesses in the back of my mind where I don’t wanna say there are spiders and cobwebs, but there probably is.

Also, I wanted to give a little tip out there to those of you who may be going through EMDR. If you find a moment when you are “stuck on the train” and can’t get past the image. I had one moment where it did this. I imagined myself being blown away, out the door by a very strong wind. It helped. It moved my brain forward. It got my brain into motion. (I will share whatever little tips/tricks that have helped me like this when I can for when my brain gets stuck.)

Derailment? AHHHH, yes. You wonder what I am talking about. Derailment. Such an odd, ODD thing. To go from this harsh crazy memory. Something that I keep trying to block out in my mind, to all of a sudden having an almost entire clarity of things that were completely filled in. I don’t remember walking to the chaplain’s car, but apparently, I was escorted there. The paramedics apparently checked me out on the front porch before that, I don’t remember that. My memory stopped from the time I saw the one paramedic shake his head. My mind was blank. Gone. No more. They said I was cold. I think I was cold on the inside. Not the outside. It may have been December in Colorado, but I didn’t feel the cold. I don’t remember my friend coming up to me to make sure I was breathing ok. I don’t remember any of this. I don’t remember anything up to the point of the cops swabbing my fingers for gun powder residue in the ambulance. Correction. I DIDN’T remember. I remember MOST of it now. And not because someone filled it in. I remember my friends facial features. I remember her scared, worried face. I remember the group of people talking to the side about me. I remember being in a car was claustrophobic. I couldn’t be in a car. I couldn’t. It was too much for me to handle. How was I to handle my life from there?

What do you do with all this new information dumped on you? You follow the rest of the derailments. Just continue. See where they take you. Sometimes you have to let yourself relax enough to allow the brain to just “leave” its head space and go where it needs to.

MAKE SURE YOU HAVE YOUR TOOLS HANDY BEFORE DOING ANY OF THIS! YOUR TOOLBOX YOUR THERAPIST GIVES YOU IS THERE FOR A REASON!!!!!

Wait, what about the derailment? I got derailed again, didn’t I? Oh, yea. Sorry, apparently my brain does it EVERYWHERE I guess. Well, my brain kept going to things not supposedly related to the subject at hand, and yet they were relevant. It was so weird. It showed odd things about the whole event and myself. My support system, my inner strength, my ability to get through 5 years of “self therapy”, by doing my own desensitization, and doing my own research on everything. My own therapist was surprised I was as far as I was with everything I did on my own, but with all my “smarts” as she put it, it will be my downfall as well. It will be what holds me back. I think it’s my inner control demon that I can’t seem to control. Wait, does that even work???

This is not the hardest thing I have gone through. I’ve already been through the hardest thing that I’ve had to face so far in my life. (I know I will have more in the future.) But I have to do this for myself. I have to heal, move forward, make myself better, to make my future better. The only way to do that, is to reach out for the continued help that I couldn’t finish on my own. I am thankful I found such a great place to do so in my little sanctuary of the world. My therapist is great, and I am glad I found her.

I AM STRONG! I will not break. No matter how long I’ve been strong, I will always been strong. I have two beautiful women giving me very strong examples of strength.

“Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths. When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender, that is strength.” —Arnold Schwarzenegger

I WILL NOT SURRENDER!!! Which reminds me. I volunteered to help photograph the Out of Darkness Walk being held here in the Twin Cities in September! Look out for pictures then!!!! Also, check out @mugglearts on Facebook for our Internal Strengths Project. We haven’t had follow through for people on appointments yet, but it is hard for many which is understandable. If you know anyone willing to join us in spreading the word around the Twin Cities in Minnesota, PLEASE let them know!

 

 

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My Journey Through EMDR Therapy

If you search, you don’t find much about EMDR therapy from a patient’s point of view. It won’t be an easy feat, but I decided, I wanted to share my experience with everyone here. It’s about time I added to my journey from 2012 on here. To maybe either conclude it with a good ending, or to make it a little better. I have started the journey, but haven’t gotten too far in. We started with my first session 2 weeks ago. We will see what this session brings this week. I know it will bring up a lot, but this will help a lot in the long run. I am hoping that this will help some who will be going through EMDR therapy or thinking of going through EMDR therapy, from the patient’s point of view. I want to give them encouragement and let them know they are not alone in this process.

I hope whomever is reading this gets understanding and hope. And know you are not alone in this process!


A Puppy, A Family Friend, Our Love Indeed

I know I have not been posting much. I’m working on it. I’ve been having some PTSD and Bi-polar issues along with being so hectic and moving again, but I have a HUGE favor to ask.

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Our family has come across a very good person while training our puppy. She has come across some hard times. One of her puppies now has Cancer. She is in need of some financial help. If you could please spread the word for us it would be greatly appreciated!!!! She is one of the sweetest, most gentle puppies you will ever meet. She is a service dog as well. Her mom is a dog trainer, and has been certified in dog psychology. If you cannot donate, if you could at least spread the word, it would be greatly appreciated!! Thank you SOOOOO much!!!

https://www.gofundme.com/roxy-the-service-dog
gf.me/u/74ry4


Life is Gets in the Way Sometimes

I know, I know, you can reprimand me. I haven’t written in a while. It has been chaotic and I have been trying to get things under control. My bi-polar, depression, anxiety, and PTSD have reared their ugly heads. Not in a very terrible manner, but enough to make life seem a little more difficult. I started reading this book about a psychiatrist who has manic-depressive disorder. I found this book and I was thinking that it would bring some insight into a lot of things. Who knew how much insight. If you ever wonder what some are going through, I suggest reading it. WARNING: Not everyone’s symptoms are as severe or the same as what she goes through. Just remember that it gives you an idea of what its like to be inside a persons head who has this disease.

In this book, An Unquiet Mind, by Kay Redfield Jamison. There are many things I want to write on, but something just got to me tonight. The one thing that really got to me was this line: “Manic-depression is a disease that both kills and gives life. Fire, by its nature, both creates and destroys.” Many manic depressives are ones who are creative, many manic depressives are ones who are suicidal. This line just spoke to me. I don’t know why.

Maybe it is because of what I have gone through or what it feels like. Or maybe it spoke to something that’s within me. No, I’m not suicidal. I’ve been manic, and I’ve had my downs.

There are many things in this book that seem to reach out to me, and HOPEFULLY. I can get to finishing it and writing about it soon or at least some of it.

Again, sorry about the delays. HOPING to get back sooner!


The Game of Life

Have you ever sat and thought about life? All the choices you have to make? High school electives? College courses? High school/College job? Career? Family Life? Kids? Cars? A home? It goes on and on and on?

Now think about it. Look at the game of Life game board. See how it winds and turns and twists every which way? As a kid we never really realized how true that game is to real life. We never knew how close to life that would be. Like when you landed on that one darn space that made you pay in because some darn unexpected thing happened. Like a car repair or house repair. Yea. Nothing like a surprise repair to undo all of your hard work on your mental self esteem.

Life has been chaotic. Life is crazy. I finally have excellent insurance to find out what is truly going on inside my body. Come to find out. I probably really didn’t want to know. They found another nodule. This time on the bed of where my right thyroid used to be. They were unable to find any conclusive evidence on it. It was unable to get a good biopsy of it. So for now we are just monitoring.

My blood sugar isn’t pretty. I am prediabetic. So we are taking precautions. GO ME! My chiropractor thinks My sciatic nerve is inflamed hence my increased pain in the right side. Oh and the diagnosis list that is a foot long that my endocrinologist has added to my chart. BOY OH BOY! I now will have to go through an entire day of testing to confirm all of my mental health diagnosis to make sure what is going on so we can go about it all correctly. My primary care doctor tried putting me on Zoloft. We were doing good, until we increased my dose and my anxiety/irritability increased to the point of everyone else noticing. SOOO, my new psychiatrist decreased it for now until I see her again and I go through testing and try something else to see what we can do. I have a feeling there is no medication i can be on that will be a good fit due to a few things. 1. Cause of weight gain, 2. cause of irritability and weight gain 3. counter indications with other medications that I now have to take in order to keep myself from dying.

I just don’t know what to do anymore. I am so tempted to say stop with all the meds/testing and everything, but it gets to the point of, I kind of need those. If I don’t take those it may cause some serious issues. Especially being the one medication has already helped me to lose 10 pounds. Maybe it’s just the pain and the nervous/anxiety/money problems talking who knows. I’m just tired of struggling all the time. Yet all the anxiety and everything makes me want to go on a shopping spree. I can’t win. No matter what I do. I don’t know how to cope anymore. I guess I need to get myself reorganized again and situated in my routine that keeps getting unsettled from moving, changing schedules, promotions, etc. I need to get myself back on track. I just don’t know how. Maybe this is something to talk to my Psychiatrist about.

Any who, yes, as you read. You read promotion correctly. I technically got two “promotions”. I started working for Prime Therapeutics in December of 2015 as a contractor with Aerotek (so not hired on with the company, but as a temp). I started really liking my job. Finally in the same line of work I had been wanting to be in for a LONG time now. Putting my Pharmacy Technician experience stuff to use, granted in a different aspect of the field, but still. I started in one area, with the goal of becoming a technician and moving to another team. So, by March I had my test scheduled and was studying really hard to get it done and over with. April 27th, 2016 I took my Pharmacy Technician Certification Exam and passed. I had talked to my recruiter, and was told that goal was by August I could transition to the Tech side of things. Only to find out a day or two later than in less than 1 week I would be trained in as a technician. I was shocked, surprised and amazed all at the same time. Shortly after, in the beginning of May, I started training as a technician. I loved my job even more! Still being a contractor. My next hurdle now was to be hired on as a full time employee. In September a round of hiring came around. I was unable to get it only because there were other techs hired on before me that had dibs on the position. I understand. I totally get it! By mid October, there was another round of hiring. I figured, let’s try this again. A week later, I got called into an office. I was nervous thinking I did something wrong. Only to find out that they were going to convert me to a full time employee. They were going to hire me on! My next goal FINALLY accomplished! YES! So for now, my big work goals are accomplished. I only have minor work temporary goals and that is just to keep doing well and doing the best I can. My big goals is to get my money a little more steady, and my health on track and then I can create bigger career goals and focus on more things and more responsibilities. This way my health and money issues will not seep into my work life anymore.

It’s been one heck of a year. It’s been one heck of a life. I’m not sure how I have lasted through half of it, but I have. It’s interesting how I have, but I will continue to survive with those who care for me, love me and support me. Those are the ones who I truly need in my life and are my true friends and family. I could not have done half of what I have done without any of them. They are truly what make me get through each and every day.


Emotional Den

I can’t seem to get this out of my mind
It goes to and fro
Making my mind go stir crazy
I’m afraid to tell you
That you will think I am crazy
Well, maybe I am, just a little
Crazy, that is
I can’t put it into words
the way I feel about you
and when I do, it seems to just
…..
I can’t seem to express myself
Not the way I want
Not the way I need to
so I retreat into my heart and head
Into this little den
Called my emotional safe haven
Then when pushed just right,
I snap…
like the wild animal i feel like
Trapped in this emotional corner
this corner I can’t control enough
To feel safe
To not fight back
I feel cornered
and worry
this may end
WAY too soon.


It is, What it is

I know I know!!! Go ahead and yell at me, I haven’t written in quite a while. Go ahead, scold me. Life has been quite crazy, maybe even a little chaotic. Sometimes I just feel as if my feet can’t get a hold of the ground. It is frustrating, but you know, it’s life.

I know I am NOT the easiest person to get along with, nor am I perfect. I do try hard sometimes, and I try really hard at controlling my emotions. You know, the whole depression/bi polar/PTSD thing. It is NOT an easy feat, but I have managed fairly well for quite a while without taking ANY medications. As of late, I have been thinking of changing that, then I remember the hassle and the way I felt on them. I feel sometimes I do MUCH better off them.

I have my issues, and I have my quirks. Probably not the easiest person to date or be friends with even. Yes, I will have my mood swings, but I think sometimes I am so stressed, that is just how it seems to come out. I don’t like that it happens that way, but I can only seem to learn one coping mechanism at a time. Then I shut myself down, and shut the world out because I feel as if I “said too much” or “felt too much”. Then people take that as me being rude or you know. It’s not. It is a coping mechanism that seemed to form after things went sour in my life. Understanding where these emotions are coming from is one thing, but how do I face them without breaking my entire world apart? These emotions seem to feel way to big for my brain or heart to handle, but when I do face them, I feel as if I messed the entire “system” up.

I guess you can say I get frustrated easily, but I guess that came with the territory of completely removing my filter. Although, if you think of some of the emotions I have bottled up, it isn’t fully removed. It is kind of functioning, but it is a different filter entirely. It is an emotional filter, not the normal kind that people think of. This filter, it blocks things from being let in or out. It hides my heart, builds that wall around parts that are healing, but sometimes things sneak by. The fortress can be conquered occasionally. Not easily, but it can. If you only knew how much, but that is the thing, sometimes that filter will block it just in time, and what comes out is anger and frustration. I will retreat into myself to try to get a grasp of what I am feeling. Then it makes me seem distant to others.

Like I said, I am NOT an easy person to get along with, but the key to “figuring” me out is not really that hard to figure out. Many times when I snap it isn’t always about the “Current” situation, but about many things that may have built up over time, or a bundle of emotions that just became too much for my system to handle.

There are times when people make little jabs here and there, and I will completely hide the fact from them, that they may have been joking, but it truly did hurt. I shut many people out of my life because of this. Some not even purposely. I guess my head/heart decided they weren’t worth the hurt. What do you do if it is someone you don’t want to shut out? Still trying to figure that one out. Heck, I normally figure these things out by writing, but it seems, that that may not quite work the way it normally does. So now what? I feel as if I have tried everything. Do I go back to ground zero? Do I start again, or just pick up the pieces all over again? These puzzle pieces that are so torn and ragged, that they just don’t fit together anymore, and may even be missing a few pieces. This is an incomplete puzzle and one that is quite tough to put together. You know! I used to LOVE puzzles, but now I don’t know.

I don’t understand myself sometimes. So I don’t expect others to understand me either. I mean why should they? It’s my life, not theirs.

So remember, when you love someone with any kind of mental illness, that sometimes they just need a LITTLE more understanding about somethings, and sometimes a little more care. If you are in a relationship work on it together.

I know this one left me a little lost too. I guess it is just my rant for the evening.

I will TRY to write more, not that it happens much. I seem to have so much going on I just don’t know what to do anymore.