Shelly Beach & Wanda Sanchez
Having PTSD makes you feel like never you’re never safe.
Having PTSD makes you want to hide any time anyone looks at you.
You want to live in the dark, be invisible, and protect yourself from being noticed, because if you’re noticed, BAD things will happen to you.
You can’t trust anyone.
You can’t sleep at night because you’re tormented by flashbacks and a mind that won’t shut down.
Living with PTSD means that sometimes your best protection is to zone out.
Having PTSD is never being able to explain what your life is like to anyone, no matter how hard they try to understand or how hard you try to explain.
Having PTSD means feeling abandoned, even in a room filled with friends or family.
Having PTSD means you can be hijacked and terrorized by your triggers in an instant—by a smell, a song, a touch, a voice, a glimpse of an object, a well-intended statement, the sound of a passing vehicle, or absolutely anything … at any moment of the day or night.
Having PTSD means believing you’re the one unfixable person in the world.
Living with PTSD means carrying guilt and shame so crushing you feel as if you can’t breathe.
Having PTSD means never truly enjoying an experience because your mind won’t let you be fully present in the moment.
Having PTSD is planning your life around your triggers, your coping mechanisms, your illnesses, your fears and emotions and struggling not to just give up.
Having PTSD is knowing that trusted friends, family members, loved ones are sometimes really rapists, pedophiles, or wife beaters who parade as deacons, teachers, or your smiling uncle.
Having PTSD is waking up vomiting every day for forty years because opening your eyes to your childhood world made you want to die, and your body learned to see everything in the world as a threat.
Having PTSD is being unable to go to camp, retreats, walk through a crowd, shake a hand, eat from a buffet, or relinquish the fear that anything bad that could happen, WILL happen–to you.
Living with PTSD is believing that you’re irreparably flawed, stained, and ruined.
PTSD is a prison of hopelessness–until you treat the trauma.
There is hope.