PTSD day


Today is what I’d call a PTSD day. I’ve had these days before, and they are murder. Because I exercised more than usual yesterday (walking home from the movie), my sleep was interrupted with me surfacing every few hours. Then I woke up, super alert, at 5 am. I did the usual routine for getting back to sleep (small snack, reading, focused on breathing, calming supplement), and at 6 fell back asleep. Slept till 8:30, then got up extremely groggy.

Since then my day is a struggle to stay upright. I feel as if I am in a grey fog and cannot focus on any task. My mind is full of depressing thoughts. The idea of looking for work is just overwhelming. Eating a meal is a difficult task, though I am hungry.

It’s as if I’ve fallen into a major depression, except I know that if I get a decent night’s sleep tonight, it will have dissipated by tomorrow. Which is good compared to having major depression, which can last for months. But it’s one more day where I cannot really function with no great reason to give anyone.

I know what the symptom of disrupted sleep is – it’s as if I have to stay alert all night for possible danger. It’s the way I imagine a cat in the wild sleeps – able to awaken instantly and fully alert. But cats are built for that and I’m not.

As usual, the exercise seems to have triggered a bad memory that is still outside of my awareness, but that affects my whole body with feelings of being unsafe. And today with a grey and confusing depression.

If I had this type of sleep every day, as I believe some PTSD sufferers do, I would be well and truly disabled. Thank God that this is not an everyday occurrence for me.

In the meantime, I will try and do gently positive things. Have some soup. Go for a walk. I won’t expect myself to cope normally. Just letting myself off the hook this way should help. As well as not giving up entirely – I will do a few things.

Fractal art from: Digital Expressionism

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2 comments
  1. Nechtan said:

    Hi Ellen,Although I don't have PTSD I can identify with what you are saying. Its the one thing that makes me very cautious, maybe overly so, about exercise. You will know all too well when you realise you have pushed too far you are already past the point of no return and its a horrible state of mind to know that you must then endure what after effects follow as a result. It is then virtually impossible to do the things you were doing before. It will take time to pass which is no comfort when you are in it but some time soon you'll be back to your best again. Please try not to beat yourself too much as frustrating as it is because what needs done will be done when you are rested enough to do it.All the bestNechtan

  2. Ellen said:

    I really appreciate your comment Nechtan, thank you. I think all of us with anxiety disorders share a similar struggle with a lot of the same symptoms. I rarely find anyone else who has to be so cautious with exercise and who understands what I'm talking about – it's nice I'm not alone.

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