Archive for August, 2010

13
Aug

When my husband asked me, four years ago, how I would feel about moving to Colorado where he would have the opportunity to realize a long held career goal, I told him, “Sure, let’s do it.”  We waited two years until our older son, Ray, finished high school, and then began packing up the home we had lived in for seventeen years in a town I had called home for thirty.

After packing one or two boxes, I became exhausted, my head pounding, and I would take a nap, avoiding any more packing that day.  My birthday came a month before our departure date, and when Ray, gave me a CD of music he had assembled for our drive to Colorado, I burst into tears, he and I crying together.  He had decided not to come with us, as he did not want to leave Austin.  Yet I never stopped to assess what I was undertaking.

The day my husband, younger son, and I drove off, leaving Ray behind, my heart broke.  For the next six hours of driving, I squeezed my eyes shut, and only the next day, as we drove through rain in eastern New Mexico, did tears stream down my cheeks.   When we got to the house in Colorado that we would be living in for at least a year, I dropped to the floor and curled into a ball, unwilling and unable to move.

Depression worse than any I had known since the days after my second son’s birth got a hold of me and wouldn’t let go, no matter how hard I fought back by volunteering for local campaigns, joining yoga classes, hiking.  When I returned to visit Austin and passed by my old house, sobs broke from me.  But being back in my beloved town brought me a flood of relief that felt like a drug, the joy punctured by having to leave again.

Over the next two years, through therapy I came to understand how much my home and town had become integral parts of  a life I had built to heal me from my childhood traumas.  My home sustained me just as my mothering healed me.  And when I left it and my older son at one and the same time, I knocked an enormous hole in the wall I had built between my present and my past pain.

What most amazed me about this whole experience was how ignorant I was of the importance of my home.  I couldn’t see what had sustained me in my adult years.  I did not foresee the consequence of moving away and leaving Ray behind. I did not see that because I had healed from my trauma I was not necessarily immune to falling back into its pain.

Trauma’s biggest consequence, I believe, is that it blinds us.  Initially, this is life-protecting, allowing us to react without being paralyzed by overwhelming terror.  But when the source of the terror is gone, when we manage to come to recognize that we are no longer in mortal danger,- a years long process in itself- a subtle blindness continues.   After all those years of looking away, we lost the ability to recognize we are not seeing the whole picture of our lives.  A sort of existential loss of peripheral vision.  When threatened to even a tiny degree, I get tunnel vision, using all my strength and determination to push through, to manage, to cope.  And lose the ability to ask: at what cost?  What will this mean for me?

My family returned to our Austin home a month ago.  My husband came to understand the importance it held for me, and so he is willing to do a lot of traveling.  I am lucky and grateful.  And I am whole again.  Ready to now have Ray be the one to leave, as he sets out for college.

The deep pain I went though in these last two years showed me I still has more healing to do, and for that I am thankful.  Times I wonder: do we ever end this journey of healing?

The Multigenerational Ripple of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

Category : Uncategorized | Blog
مبلمان اداری صندلی مدیریتی صندلی اداری میز اداری وبلاگدهی فروشگاه اینترنتی پاراگلایدر زیورآلات آگهی استخدام آگهی رایگان تبلیغات کلیکی آموزش زبان انگلیسی پاراگلایدر ساخت وبلاگ