When you have CPTSD, everything is harder to cope with – getting up, getting ready, going out, meeting people, mingling with the crowds etc – it’s not an excuse, it really is hard. Then, you have to deal with the triggers. And they can be a bunch of motherfuckers to deal with.

And those who know me, they think it’s not affecting me, because here’s the thing: I make it look like I’m not struggling. I make (read: fake / pretend) it look easy.

Because I’ve been doing that since I was 7 years old. I was faking it. I still do. There’s only one person who can see right through me though. And with him, I can’t pull the “nothing-is-wrong-I’m-alright-not triggered-at-all” card.

I’ve struggled a lot (it was probably just two weeks ago) trying to get through the week. I’ve been struggling all these years, and even more so, since the nightmares and flashbacks, because I’m learning something new about my past regularly.

I didn’t just struggle for a couple of days or a week, or three weeks. I struggled every day (I still do, but it’s getting lesser these days with very hard work). I struggled to communicate (more like I suppressed my wants and needs, dissatisfaction etc) and it’s something that is still difficult for me to do. Sometimes, it’s a lot of work for me to smile, let alone make conversations with people.

To the average, these may not seem like a lot to grapple with. I don’t expect them to. But, they are my things to grapple with. And mine alone.

AND (yes, I notice I use ‘and’ a lot), I’m going to be very honest here. I’m struggling with my own beliefs / religion. I was born into it. I wasn’t given a choice.

For that reason and more, I’m now in a country where I can be myself (and it has taken me more than a year to finally get that!). Be someone who wouldn’t be persecuted for wanting to explore other beliefs, because she’s questioning her own.

With CPTSD, I’m always tired. Emotionally and physically. I realised I was emotionally exhausted on a daily basis because I didn’t let myself feel. I didn’t let myself ride the wave that is my frazzled mind / emotions.

I can’t keep pretending anymore, because it’s TIRING AF! And I can’t do it anymore. For the sake of my own sanity, I can’t fake it any longer.

So, through the never-ending help of someone very close to me and my therapist, I learned to feel all these fucked feelings I have. I let myself cry. Even in public. I’ve come to a point where I just don’t care about crying in public anymore. (SIDE NOTE: One thing I like about Sydney and its people is when they see you cry, they don’t think you’re crazy. They come over to you and ask if you’re alright, and if there’s anything they can do to help). There are days where I’d have the energy to do a lot of things, and most days, I just want to stay home and do nothing, but cry. Curl up in bed and cry.

And before you think I’m all drama and all about giving up and feeling sorry for myself (which I used to and well, slowly getting out of it), I know I need to keep going. I need to keep breathing. And that’s what you (those who are in similar situation) need to do too. Take your time. Don’t push yourself. Just breathe. Let it go. Slowly. Eventually, you’ll feel much better.

It may take more than a day to recuperate from a trigger (been there, done that), and that’s okay.

It’s okay.

 

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