PTSD, aftershock, and financial issues

It’s another day of doing nothing for me – almost- but for a first time in a week, there is no hidden mounts of pressure, no insurmountable challenges and feeling of despair. I’ve just receive my next chunk of money, my next payment, and the suffocating feeling like there is a ring around my heart(or lungs) constantly squeezing, has released a little. I can finally breathe. For about 10 days, I’ve reverted back to whom I was when I was scared, panicked, in shock and generally depressed. Sure, partly for money reasons, but let’s face it, it’s not only that. Once again, I’ve went from a period of regular weekly income, to having almost nothing. Literally- nothing in my bank account or wallet. Spending my last money for the bus and wondering how I will pay the next bill. Again. It’s not such a novel concept. I freelance, which means I’m floating from periods of getting more than I need, to periods where I just have to be patient for a month or two while I am trying to get new work.
But this, it’s like a physical reaction, and I completely lose all my logic, and ability to get myself out of that situation. It’s debilitating. I’m just starting to think there’s no getting out of it, and it’s all dire and impossible, until, when I receive my money, there is a day of shock and relief, whilst I’m fighting to forget that paralyzing fear…And then I’m back to real life. Like I just awoke out of the haze(which I pretty much did) and became real. It’s like my reaction to losing weight. It’s one of the hardest because I wonder if I can ever get over it. Continue reading

Farewell for now

To everyone out there,

who has read my blog here or is reading it right now. My last post was at the end of March, and I still haven’t gotten to another one.

I’d been convinced I would have time to write here, as well as in my new blog, which I mentioned in the previous post. Now I know that I have to leave both blogs in order to move forward. Continue reading

2. Starting recovery


Sometimes, you start the right thing for the wrong reason or for no reason at all. Sometimes in the midst of a nightmare, you find something to hold on to. In retrospect, the reason doesn’t matter. The reason has no meaning when that one thing is the one thing that keeps you holding onto life.

Until things get better. Or if they do.

         It’s the past August and I have just realized, my life is falling apart. I have just graduated, I have an internship at a great place, and I’ve just recently fallen in love with the perfect person for me(we are still together and crazy for each other)- so you can see how that would come as a surprise. But when you realize that you’ve stopped caring enough to brush your teeth or hair, food has become a chore, and you cry all the time…that has to give you heads up.

I’m breaking down. You’re too weak to deny it anymore. Continue reading

Spiraling Out of Control

Today, I’m in a bit of a slump. Okay, so I have been in a slump for couple of days now. It’s one of those inevitable feelings that come along with PTSD and trauma and so on…either that or I am loosing my mind.

Either way, whatever work I touch those few days, it’s destined to fall apart.

I can’t work. I cry, I obsess over things, and I can’t work. Like I have switched the clock and went back few months. I know I got over that phase of recovery, so why do I feel like that again? All I know is, my life has been change after change for months and I still don’t feel like it’s enough sometimes. All the dark shadows of my life, they all wait, lurk in the corners where they belong, until I’m facing a bigger challenge, and then they all come back to hunt me.

I need to change.

I wake up on Saturday morning with that thought in mind, but I don’t know exactly how to change, before I do some work. Work doesn’t come along.

I need to change. Continue reading

Spring-Cleaning for Your Brain pt. 2

I’m one of those people that love taking over about 100 projects at the same time and complain of not having time to finish them. Time has thought me nothing.  The lesson of knowing when to say no is completely wasted on me.

Today, I order my room a tiny bit, but in a strange way, it’s a completely new, and unknown to me activity. I order in a way I never have before.

Usually, I try to find appropriate space for all, so that it can be accessible when I get to it. This time, I think first. I box everything that I can’t deal with right now, and/or for the next 3 months.

I cannot sort out all previous memories while I’m reflecting on a particular summer of my life. I won’t get to studying 4 languages at the same time. I can’t practice drawing, get in perfect shape, write, study Photoshop and graphic design, and make earrings. I can’t pull my life to pieces to get over that summer, and at the same time take on learning to cook. I can do some of those now- even a lot of them. I seem to be one of those people that love doing many things.

But there has to be a LINE. I’m learned to desire, to wish, to dream. I’m learned to research. No one has ever learned me to stop myself. Continue reading

6 months in

There is this moment, that was probably the greatest moment for me that first year after the rape. It’s that moment you know. The moment you have been waiting for. The moment in which you look into your friends eyes and know you are finally home and nothing has changed.

It took about a week for it to blow up in my face.

*

This is the moment I fly back to my country, about 2 months or more after the rape.

I’ve waited to get back for all this time. All that kept me going through the too little work hours and the nights waking up each hour, was the thought about a home. I have home, friends, family, university, future, all waiting for me to get back.

I crave that moment every day, this is the moment keeping me going.

I deny access of everything and anything bad to my brain, and it slowly grows under my skin like a tumor. I smile widely, I think positively(or so I say to myself). I push all the bad memories down, because I can’t fight for job and survival and deal with them too.

Even as it becomes clear that I won’t make enough money that summer, going back home is what keeps me going. It’s hell., but it’s a temporary hell. I can do temporary.

Not getting the money I need means also that I need to take a leave of absence at my university. As I think over that, it makes me feel weak with relief. I love university. My friends are there. It’s my home. I like even the classes and the little sleep. I love it. So that feeling of relief catches me off guard and I’m not able to explain it for a while.

*

September comes, and I am back where I belong, at home, and everything that happened in the summer is safely an ocean away from me. This whole first week goes in euphoria. I have been in hell, and I am out of it. And for a second, it seems everything is right again. I am at home, I have my friends and family around, I have the university. It feels like I’m on top of the world. I have struggled with classes and other things during my university years that far, but now they all seem so much smaller than what I went through during the summer.

If I can do that I can do anything….right?

Wrong.

About 10 days later- 10 really great days of sleeping, resting, and seeing friends, my past finally catches onto the distance. The happiness wears off and I step into the reality. The reality of not having enough money to return my debts, not being able to tell great stories of my over-seas adventure, not being able to sleep or make the money I need.

I tell myself I am trying that fall. I am trying really hard. I keep repeating. I was through the worst, I am here, I can do anything. But it doesn’t work. I don’t have any strength to make it work, no will, no hope. I am so drained, even getting up in the moment feels pointless. Yet, I can’t explain that to anyone, I don’t want to. I just want to forget and move on. So I push myself.

Be positive. Try again. And again. Be positive. Forget. Find a way to turn things around. I don’t turn things around that semester in leave of absence. I just live through the months. I don’t even live. I simply exist. Most of the time, I cry in the bathroom(I feel that I don’t deserve to do it, so I can only let myself feel that way when I’m alone) and get in fights with my mother for no reason at all. I keep lying to myself. There’s no way I can explain the truth about that summer to anyone, so I lie to myself, force myself to be happy and try to find a way to turn things around. Which, considering the fact that I am having very silent, invisible, breakdown- can’t really happen. You can’t fight for a life you want if you can’t find a reason to even keep breathing. And all this time, even with my friends, I push the unhappiness down and I don’t let them see anything is wrong. I have been through the worst and I need to be invincible. I go through that fall the same way I went through the summer- thinking that the moment I get to the spring everything will be different. In the spring, I am going back to my university, which is in another city. Everything I was before is waiting for me there, or so I think.

Meanwhile, that fall, to everyone I know, I have few empty months. My parents want me to get a job, my friends expect me to get an internship. I can’t do either, and I am angry at all of them for no reason, all the time. And all this time I can’t explain why I am so deeply unhappy with everything.

But, unhappy or not, I somehow make it to the end of January, and that means a new semester. And getting back to normal. Fresh start. Or so I say to myself. Because I feel fine.

It’s that moment you know. The moment you have been waiting for. The moment in which you look into your friends eyes and know you are finally home and nothing has changed.

In that exact moment I know, nothing has changed, but I have.

There’s nothing left from the old me, that I can remember.

My life as I know it has changed forever.

And there is no going back.

Between two worlds

Lately, I’m living 2 lives. I have done that before, I have. Only then, I was living my real life- job, classes and friends and all that, dreaming about a life I couldn’t get, because I thought I was damaged forever. And those 2 lives, the made cracks in me, and in those cracks I began to look back in the past, and I couldn’t be in denial anymore.

I am starting to live 2 lives again, only this time, it isn’t a bad thing. Things in life are always the same, but it depends on where we are coming from how we are going to view them. Last time I was lost. May be looking back at the past wasn’t such a bad thing, because I needed to do it, but it did hurt. All these time, 2 years, I kept thinking, I didn’t have faith. I lost my faith, I lost my ability to dream.

I didn’t lose my ability to dream. I always knew exactly what direction I wanted to take, and felt no remorse for taking it, even when it was hard. Now, even in my worst moments, even when I couldn’t make sense of things, I still knew what direction I want to take. I just couldn’t do it.

That wasn’t loss of faith. That was loss of life force. Continue reading