Rolling Without Limits

Your mobility may be limited. Your voice, boundless.

PTSD
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PTSD

In 1995 I was in an incident that brought on PTSD ( Post Traumatic Stress Disorder)  In the beginning, I was pretty much incapacitated. I couldn't speak or write or virtually do anything for myself. I would instead, rock back & forth & cry. I had become a broken human being. 

I was married at the time & my husband shared my daily care responsibilities with one of our close friends because he worked. It would be the better part of 6 months before I could speak any words that were recognizable. 

In the meantime, I went for many tests, blood work & even phych evaluations & after 2 months, finally a diagnosis. PTSD, borderline schitzophrenia, borderline personality disorder. I began medications to try & get rid of the voices I heard & the "things" I saw. The medicine didn't really do anything for me except make me sleep. The Dr. would change it & still the same results. 

I had become a nervous wreck & when I finally could communicate to some degree, the Dr. settled with an anti-anxiety medicine that didn't make me overly sleepy & would calm the anxiousness in me so I could concentrate & begin learning how to live again.

I had to learn virtually everything all over again. Tying my shoes, brushing my teeth & hair, taking a shower, eating with a fork & spoon. I had to learn how to dress, read & write. I would become frustrated easily because I knew this stuff & I was frustrated because I couldn't remember it. 

I would often times relapse back nearly to the beginning & have to start over again & again. It was like taking baby steps uphill only to slide back down to the bottom. Eventually as my memory came back, I wouldn't slide backwards so far & I was making progress. While it was encouraging, it was still frustrating. 

At one point I gave up trying. I accepted the fact that my life would always be like this & even if I made progress I would never be able to live on my own again. My relationship was strained at best & no amount of communication was going to fix it. My husband & I seperated in 2001 & I went to live with my mom for a short period of time. She didn't understand my condition & because we didn't get along, I didn't stay with her for very long. She had her own issues to deal with & I didn't have the patience to deal with hers & mine together. 

My husband & I would try our relationship again in 2002, but it didn't last. He had given up on our relationship all together & couldn't handle my illness any longer, so we split again for good in February 2003. By March, I moved clear across the states to Georgia where I currently live. In 2007 I decided it was high time to tackle this PTSD again & find some therapy that would help me to get back to some kind of my normal self. 

In the beginning it was very difficult because there wasn't many therapists here who were qualified to handle my case. I managed to find one who gave me some "homework" to do. It helped some, but the part I was struggling with the most was my loss of memory. Both long & short term were so convoluted & with no one here who knew me in my past, that making progress would prove extremely difficult. I contacted several of my "friends" who I would find out didn't understand what was wrong with me & didn't want any part of trying to help me piece things back together. I hit a brick wall. 

I had come to a point where I didn't know if I was remembering something or if it was something I had just heard or something I was making up because it sounded good. So I stopped all therapy for a while. I was at a point where I could take care of myself for the most part, my relapses weren't happening quite as often & the things I heard & saw were no longer there. 

I did some research online about PTSD. Most of what I found was in regards to soldiers coming home from war with it. The information was vast but good, though I couldn't really relate to any of it. Then I read an article about some soldiers who were going through therapy with horses. A lightbulb had gone off in my head. The more I read the more I became encouraged. 

I have always loved horses & learned to ride when I was a kid.... so maybe this was the ticket to my recovery. 

At the time though horses would be a far reach because of money & space. So I would work on some of the memory exercises I read about. The exercises helped some, but without anyone from my past to help me with the rest of it I just wasn't getting anywhere. Again, I would give up for a while. 

Now I have my own horse, & my therapy continues every day. I still have issues with my memory & I suspect I always will. I have my good days where I remember a lot of things both short term & long term. Some days I can't remember my own name. I know brighter days are ahead & with Cookie close by I have hope that I'll find more of my normal as we go along & learn about eachother. 

 

Thank you for reading my blogs. I appreciate all comments & votes. 

Leave a Comment

  1. pftsusan
    pftsusan
    Loved it. Voted.
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    1. Rene
      Rene
      Thank you! Glad you enjoyed it.
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  2. Broken English
    Broken English
    Voted. A powerful blog. Really sorry you had to go through all this. I am not surprised your horse helped to pull you out of it - animals can often have that effect. You also write for Of Horse, don't you? You might be interested in my latest blog here, Heather, The One-Legged Model, please check it out. :-)
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    1. Rene
      Rene
      Thank you! That what doesn't kill us, only makes us stronger. lol Yes I do write for Of Horse.. Hi neighbor! :)
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    2. SignLanguage
      Oh, you hadn't guessed this is Cookie's owner! I would've told you had I known you didn't notice.
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  3. Teresa Thomas
    Teresa Thomas
    Vote #5. Rene, wow! Such a powerful blog. So sorry, that you went through all that. That must have been a challenge for you. You have came a long way and from the looks of things, still yet, you have more to go through. Just hang in there. You're making progress.....
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    1. Rene
      Rene
      Thank you! I have for the most part accepted that things happen for a reason even if I don't always know what that reason is. I do have a ways to go, but I am inspired & encouraged & realize now perhaps more than ever that nothing is impossible. :)
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  4. SignLanguage
    It pains me to see that this is the type of situation you need to find out who your real friends are. The advantage of having pets is that they will stick with you no matter what - especially if you are an incredible owner which, by your posts, I believe you to be. And, these posts should help you through... have you noticed a change since you started writing for ofhorse? Voted! Stop by my new post, The Hidden Face of Alexander Graham Bell, when you have the chance!
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    1. SignLanguage
      By the way, do you feel comfortable telling us what the accident was?
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      1. Rene
        Rene
        I don't mind at all.. It happened while I was working as a transport driver for a company that works with developmentally handicapped adolescents & adults. I was transporting a client from another agency & when we got to the driveway of our destination, the client began screaming at the top of her lungs, hitting & kicking the back of my seat. No one from either agency had given me any heads up about this client nor where to seat her in the van. It scared me so badly. When I finally got the van parked, & got inside to get some help with the client, my boss had gone out to bring the client in & started yelling at me because the door was locked & that was against policy. I hadn't known there was child locks on the doors. I opened the van & they went inside. Rather than showing fear & being scared, I got angry at my boss & the whole situation. I followed them inside & wrote up my incident report. My husband was waiting for me & we were headed to eat lunch with a friend of ours in town. About 30 minutes later, I couldn't speak, I couldn't eat, I was shaking & rocking. I could hear my husband & friend asking me questions, but I couldn't respond. My husband then took me to the E.R. & they began running tests, including a spinal tap for jaundice. The best way I can describe what happened to me is how the Dr. put it... my twig just snapped.
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    2. Rene
      Rene
      I did indeed find out who my true friends were in the beginning of this experience... most of them couldn't or wouldn't believe it & never spoke to me again. A lot of people thought I was faking it or acting. I had to see several different Dr.s & they all said that if she's faking it she deserves an Academy Award. I have noticed changes, in that... I am remembering more things from my childhood that I couldn't remember before. They are vivid & good memories, which is awesome because for the most part I could only remember the bad stuff that happened. I'm healing in more ways than I thought possible. And thank you so much for your vote. :)
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  5. Lil Nana
    Lil Nana
    #7 Wow, powerful blog, thank you for sharing it with us
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    1. Rene
      Rene
      I'm glad you liked it. Thank you for your vote. :)
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