Tuesday, January 22, 2013

The one where I come out about the PTSD

So I've been meaning to do one of those round up posts,you know, the type that wraps up 2012 and sets some goals for 2013, I guess I put it off until the last minute...just in case the world did end but what do you know? it's 2013 and we are all still here.

It's been kind of odd looking back through last years posts and reflecting on the events that happened. The year started out quite well I think, Smidge had just turned one and I was on a high. I'd managed to keep my preemie alive at home for eight whole months and what's more she was doing great developmentally, I was so elated.

However come the spring things came crashing down around me as we faced more hospital admissions, some of which were perfectly ugly and utterly frightening.

In a bid to cope with it all I exercised more, drank less and blogged often.

I readily engaged in counselling and my counsellor was a lovely, kind woman.She was gentle and ever so understanding, taking things at my pace.
However, with Smidge's health issues all the time bringing new challenges, I think I found it hard to feel the full emotional impact of the events we talked about.

Literally, when it came to discussing feelings I'd draw a blank.

Events, yes.

Feelings, no.

Yes readers,I could literally  talk about NICU till I was blue in the face (no pun intended) but it evoked very little in terms of emotion. I found it very hard to be open to experiencing my own feelings..

How can you heal when you are unfeeling?

How can you make yourself more vulnerable when deep down inside you still don't feel safe?

Anyway, when the counselling ended and the hospital readmissions lessened I can recall things coming to a bit of a head one night. I don't know quite what prompted it, one minute I was seemingly fine (ish) the next I was bawling my eyes out telling One day Hubby over and over that I did't want Smidge to die. That I'd been scared, very, very scared and still was.

I think something must of kind of shifted that day as ODH soothed me and confessed he still has nightmares too and reassured me everything was okay.

Since then, I found my general state was all together more emotional and not always in a good, clear way.

I was indeed a mother venting.

So towards the end of last year I decided I couldn't go on as I have been, that I needed more help.

So I re referred myself for a comprehensive assessment, the conclusion of which was that I have Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Apparently up to 70% of parents with sick or premature babies suffer with it.

I can't say this came as much of a shock, as truly I didn't expect anything else.However taking that step and recognising that I was being affected by a trauma in my day to day living, is hopefully one step closer to healing.

I'm not entirely sure of all the details of my treatment plan as yet but I'm already looking forward to a brighter 2013, I'm not sure how I'm going to get there but I just know I will x

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