Not sure how others receive information about their past, but mine come in a few ways. The main ones are: dreams/nightmares, flashbacks, & body memories.
The PTSD makes separating and understanding the information difficult because of the automatic reactions that get triggered each time I remember something.
The DID makes separating and understanding the information difficult because of the way my brain developed and learned to store memories, sensation, & experiences.
Back in my old living area, I was constantly bombarded by triggers and memories. It was all my therapist and I could do to keep me relatively sane and focused on the present instead of spiraling out of control. I never truly felt safe there and could not move on to work on other aspects of recovery even though I was ready to do so. Every time I tried, the flashbacks and dreams and body memories bombarded me with warnings.
Now, in my new living area, I am safe to delve into these memories, work on pain management and merging the fragmented sensations from body memories, dreams, nightmares, and flashbacks into whole memories of my past. I am physically and emotionally safe here. I can go outside and walk around any time. I can use public transportation without fear of getting harassed.
I can shop at stores and know that bad service is because of the individual’s issues and not my past. I can reconnect with safe family members. I can enjoy hobbies and practice self care that was impossible before. I can let my body heal and look the way nature intended for it to look instead of how my past molded it.
But with all of that comes learning how to cope with the shame and fear and distress that comes from confronting those triggers. My tool box is full of options. I’m learning new ones all the time just by observing how people interact with each other in real life. Did I mention that people-watching is one of my favorite things to do?
The struggle now is learning how to utilize my toolbox for these new and different challenges. It’s like starting from square 1 all over again.
So the posts here will continue to be about the same topics, but the perspective will continue to change as my journey changes. Thanks for reading and understanding.