“How long do you mean to be content?” ~ Percy Bysshe Shelley
“The bodies of traumatized people portray “snapshots” of their unsuccessful attempts to defend themselves in the face of threat and injury. Trauma is a highly activated incomplete biological response to threat, frozen in time. For example, when we prepare to fight or to flee, muscles throughout our entire body are tensed in specific patterns of high energy readiness. When we are unable to complete the appropriate actions, we fail to discharge the tremendous energy generated by our survival preparations. This energy becomes fixed in specific patterns of neuromuscular readiness. The person then stays in a state of acute and then chronic arousal and dysfunction in the central nervous system. Traumatized people are not suffering from a disease in the normal sense of the word – they have become stuck in an aroused state. It is difficult if not impossible to function normally under these circumstances.” ~ Peter Levine
Wow, “they have become stuck in an aroused state“. About a month ago the clutch on my car failed terminally. The drive home from work (five long miles), nursing the pedal to keep the car moving, was excruciating, anxiety-wise. I made it, yet worse for the wear. Though I have PTSD humming at all times, sometimes it gets triggered and the hum stretches out then knots up into a scream. It got triggered that night. The after-effects are with me still, including the one that makes feel on the edge of tears most all the time. The knot remains tight. It’s not just physical pain, it is burning, itching, aching, pounding, terrifying. Not to mention the emotional and psychological effects. It’s complicated. It’s a mess. I wanna stay home! Alas, tis a workday. Poor me, right? Whatever. As long as we have coffee on it’s okay. Mask & gloves. I find myself hoping that people can detect a smile behind the mask. I think of it as my “Hurricane Andrew mindset”. Andrew taught me that happiness is indeed elective, especially when things turn dire. And advisable; happiness is advisable. It ain’t gonna fix nothin’ right away, but it is like putting a new set of tires on your car, the way it makes you feel those deep feelings. Oh well. Gotta get to it. I bought one of those super-wide rain-mist shower heads, as a luxury during this crisis. I have the next two days off so I can take a couple of showers a day. It ain’t an OCD thing. Nope. I find that 2-3 showers a day, during those triggered spells, is not only soothing, it also seems to ratchet back the severity. I am now off to step under the rain-mist before work. The Celts believe that the Mist is where the world of Spirit and the material world intermingle most thoroughly and intensely. And now I can enjoy the perks at home. Good on me.
All is well. Goof gloriously.