Posts tagged ‘i HADi’

THAT PREDICTABLE, PERNICIOUS OTHER SHOE

I had an interesting and amusing PTSD moment yesterday with my daughter-in-law, Jen. We were talking about something in our family which is flowing smoothly. I’ll spare you the details. You can supply details from your own life which will serve the same purpose.

As we talked, I could feel the anxiety building in me. Oh, heaven, everything was going TOO WELL. Finally, I blurted, “What do you suppose is going to happen for which we are being prepared?” This, I have got to tell you is classic PTSD thinking. If things are going badly, they’re only going to get worse. And if things are going well, they’re only going to get worse.

Once we’ve been traumatized, we spend (and waste) a great deal of energy trying to prepare ourselves for the next trauma, which surely is going to happen. I have a friend who has had ovarian cancer, and any pain inside her is, to her, clearly the first sign of a re-occurrence. Such is the thinking of the traumatized.

Well, an additional aspect of “trauma thinking” is that as soon as I mentioned it, Jen began thinking along the same lines. It is contagious thinking. Luckily, since I have some experience with trauma survivors and the way we process the events of our lives, I was quickly able to catch myself and stop the runaway train of thought that could have engulfed us.

But, what a lesson it was for me. Just in an instant I was able to “shoot myself in the foot,” the hallmark symptom of a PTSD survivor. Probably six times a day I urge someone to use balanced thinking. If you think a negative thought, balance it with a positive. You don’t need to balance the positive thoughts, however. Research has indicated that unrealistically optimistic people are actually healthier than others.

So, the lesson of the day: the other shoe needs to just stay on our feet — that way it won’t drop on our heads. Just walk out in faith. Learn to receive. “For everything there is a season.” Let this beautiful, cool, sunny fall day be an occasion for joy. Let’s live in gratitude for this moment with the sure knowledge that we don’t need to borrow trouble. When it comes, as it surely will, we’ll handle it.

Look up Rumi’s poem: The Guest House

 

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September 15, 2013 at 10:27 AM 3 comments


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