This is the sign I put on the fridge this morning to notify the children which mood I’m in. If I could, I would pause life here. Right here. I would curl into the corner of my room, pull my knees into me and stare out the window. Really…I would stare at my gardens and watch the finches gather and eat the cracked corn and safflower seed. And I would think. I would think all about yesterday and what I learned.
This post is somber in tone. I’m sorry. I want…I want to talk. I’m going free form on this. No author here. Not today. Just a girl—girl. I still see an 8 year old. A 15 year old. A 16 year old—who needs to ramble on to sort myself out.
I am seeing it now. I am starting to pull apart and identify my three disorders. I can feel when they change and why.
Borderline Personality Disorder
Bipolar: Abnormally high manic energy vs. Dangerously low depression.
I have identified more than 44 triggers with my PTSD. My husband and I are aware of them and we’ve done really well to curtail them. Yesterday, by the evening I was hyper aroused…
I don’t want to talk about this. Right now. At this moment, I’m feeling withdrawn and just…I just want to be silent. I want to be left alone with my thoughts.
I’ll set this up instead as a bullet list.
Awoke and identified “Physical Loneliness.” Husband went to work and my manic high picked up where it left off the night before. I wrote an article on Physical Loneliness. Take a look.
Manic High: Designed the web site, wrote articles, straightened out some issues with the Blog Tour, drove to Lowes and purchased a painting for my husband, painted the house, worked on more posts for the blog tour, cleaned out the cat room to convert it to a den for the children…felt overwhelmed then crashed…spiraled down out of control…chronic depression sinks in.
“I’m ornery, depressed, and it’s getting worse,” I warn my husband that night. I can feel my mood slipping. I can’t sit still. I cry. I’m beginning to see each and every disorder I have.
“You just were Manic for two days,” he observes.
“Yes,” I said. “This is the low.”
A loud truck drives by and I jump. I thought I did well, but my husband still notices.
“I just…I feel unproductive. I feel like I’ve done everything, but the one thing I need to be doing! I need to edit Broken! There’s always work and…”
A motorcycle drives by. This I can’t hide. I jump. And then I remember. Ugh! I hate it when I remember. *Joe. He would scream every time there was a loud vehicle nearby. “Get a muffler!” That was in his endearing stage…the stage he used as a front to trick me.
Oh! New revelation. *sigh* So sick of revelations (This revelation occurred while writing this article).
I can’t strop crying now. “Do you want to walk the gardens?”
Walk the gardens. To counter my past, I have created gardens all around my home. In truth, this was my PTSD doing the talking for me years before I knew I had PTSD. I filled my home with the most relaxing and stress-free thing I could think of. After all the death I’ve seen, I’ve surrounded myself with life. Gardens.
We have an Irish shade garden I filled with Astilbe, Irish Moss, and Shamrocks. We have a rose garden. A Front Garden. Two corner gardens. two butterfly gardens. Three berry patches. A side garden and “The hollyhocks.” Then there is the “green house” inside my home. You can see my gardens on Instagram.
The baby next door has colic. As predicted, right on schedule, he began screaming. Another trigger. A different kind. I hear the rabbit scream when I hear the baby scream. “I can’t hear this tonight,” I said.
“You’re hyper-aroused today,” he said. I could only nod. “Order Chinese food and we’ll call it an early night.”
I place the order. My mind is barely done for the night.
We watched Iron Giant. Well…I tried to.
“I thought I lost you.”
I paused the movie. 253 time I have watched this movie. 253 times I thought the mother meant, “I thought you died.” Now, I realize she only ever meant, “lost” as in simply misplaced. I shake my head and cry. I see all the distorted interpretations I had growing up. I begin to review all of it.
“Low to the ground. Bombs are coming down. Duck and cover. Duck and cover.”
Flash back to the movies I had to watch in high school.
I was thirteen and had to watch Hiroshima movies in English class. At the same time, we watched more WWII movies in history class…my teachers felt they needed to pair this up.
I was fourteen. We covered black history. I watched more slave movies. Pictures of torture. The 1960 riots. Everyone in the class seemed “okay” with the films. I had nightmares for months. Then again, I was eight when I watched the limbs ripped off of animals. Then again, at home, I was busy “surviving” my *half brother, Shaun.
And then…I remember something else…Something I remembered too soon. Crying, I got up and headed to the bathroom.
“Are you okay?” my husband asks. He’s worried, but I can’t talk. Not about this. Not yet. I head downstairs to take a bath.
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*Names have been changed to protect the privacy of the individuals.