Triggers

Trigger Warning for PTSD and childhood physical abuse.

I did not think that this afternoon would trigger my memories of physical abuse suffered by myself or that I witness in my family.  I just thought I was scared as crap of the male neighbor of the neighbors I had to report on this afternoon.  But I was wrong.

I have been slowly trying to read The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel A. van der Kolk, M.D.  and learn more about how the body stores memories of traumatic events.  I’m doing this so that I will understand my own body memories and responses to traumatic experiences in my own life.  This afternoon, all I could do was shake and tremble because I was so afraid of my neighbor knowing I called even after I let the police know I was concerned about him retaliating some way like in past interactions not at this level of seriousness.  This evening, my brain started to replay memories of me half watching/half listening to my oldest sister being physically abused and feeling so small and helpless to do anything to intervene.  Anxiety swept over me again.  I immediately used a technique that I have practiced using with flash backs before and that is saying “No” to the intrusive thoughts come, attempting to stop the pattern of the synapses from automatically going there.  It is going to be a hard night to sleep because of the fear of retaliation thing but I do know that the police are aware and that they will be at my home within 5 minutes if a call is needed to 911.

W.L.

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