My Diagnosis

I went to the doctor today and filled out a whole bunch of paperwork about my symptoms. Since I have never gotten help before- I had no idea what to expect. I arrived early to fill out the paperwork. My husband was by my side and so supportive, I knew I was safe, but I still couldn’t help the tightness in my throat. My hands were fidgety, my chest was tight and my eyes were shifty.

Finally, my name was called. I followed the woman to get my blood pressure taken, my weight (yay) and then followed her down a hallway. I hate hallways. It had a lot of doors too which is so stressful. I half expected someone to jump out at me. No one did though.

I sat down in her office and she began the hour long process of asking me questions. Normally I do not mind questions about my life- but these questions were the questions I always try and avoid. I immediately began to feel my air get cold in my throat, my hands wouldn’t stop moving and I kept holding my breath.

We went through all the paperwork and questions at a nice pace. It wasn’t too overwhelming. Once she was done entering all my answers into the computer- she called for the doctor to come see me.

He came in and was very friendly. He got right to the point and even printed out my medications that I will have to take from now on. I had no idea what I had been diagnosed with. I didn’t know if I would be at all. I had my guesses but I wasn’t exactly sure. I thought I would get just an occasional dose of meds for when my panic attacks were really bad.

Nope. I have 2 different medications to take daily and then another one for when my anxiety really spikes. Thankfully when we filled them, all 3 only totaled up to under $10. I really hope they work. I won’t say what they are just because I don’t want to.

The doctor said I am suffering from PTSD, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Moderate Major Depression because of the PTSD and I have General Anxiety Disorder because of the PTSD too. I wasn’t expecting Depression. I mean I know when I feel down or sad I “feel depressed” but major depression. Wow. Now I kinda know how Robin Williams felt. You can hide depression and most people are shocked to find out that you have it because you “seem happy”.

My chest and throat are still so tight and I notice I hold my breath a lot. I don’t know why but I always do. My therapist said I have PTSD but it is nice to have it on paper and Doctor diagnosed that in fact I do suffer from these 3 things.

It is really hard to open up about this face to face with someone, a friend, or a family member because I don’t look hurt. If I had a broken arm or foot, people would better understand. I really hope this works and my PTSD won’t be so bad.

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The Job Promotion

Getting a promotion is always exciting. It reenforces that fact that someone notices your hard work. I was offered a job promotion and took it. I have been there almost a week now at this new location. The new location however is more in the city and not in the country. There is crime nearby and there have been a lot of theft and armed robberies at this location.

I really prayed about it and realized this is a great opportunity for me and I shouldn’t let crime stop me from advancing my career. Theft, I have dealt with, it is annoying but nothing dangerous. The gunpoint robberies have only happened a few times in the past year or two.

The place I worked at before got robbed but not when I was employed there and so did the bank across the street. Crime can happen anywhere. But anyways- that isn’t the point of this blog.

The point is I can’t stop thinking about what will happen if I do get held up at gunpoint. Then just this morning it dawned on me, I am not trusting God. I am worried about “what if”s and that means I am not focusing my trust on God. He will keep me safe. He will look after me.

Fear gets to me so easily. We have these huge windows in the front of the store which are so nice but at night it is hard to see out of. They’re tinted so you cannot see out of them at night at all. Well I can’t, maybe once I have been there awhile I will be able to. Anyways- that part has my anxiety kicked up a couple notches. I hate parking lots, dark and not being able to see. I feel so vulnerable in a parking lot. Probably because my rape happened in a parking lot, at dark, alone and I couldn’t see what was coming.

I am so thankful for this job. Because it is allowing me to face my fears and overcome them. I don’t want to cower away from triggers anymore. I want to overcome them. Just like Mandisa says, “I am an overcomer”. (That’s a great song, btw, Overcomer by Mandisa)

I don’t want to be a victim anymore and I don’t want to imagine things going wrong.

Triggers Everywhere

I woke up this morning thinking this will be an excellent day.

I woke up and check Facebook, there is this feminist video that is going round and I decided to watch it. The video has little girls dressed up as princesses using the Fbomb to get their point across.

The little girls started talking about how 1 out of 5 women will end up being sexually assaulted. They kept saying the word rape. This is my trigger month. I am hyper sensitive to this month because this is when my rape happened.

Personally, I don’t want to talk to about it. I get too depressed and anxious. Sometimes it gets so bad I do not want to be at work. I work in retail so when I see strange men I don’t know, I get overwhelmed, which working in retail happens a lot.

There used to be a man that would come into my old job all the time that looked very similar to my rapist and I would go into an internal frenzy. So my question is- is it healthy to continue to let my body feel this way? Because I tend to block it out and push it away.

Granted my rape happened in 2006, but this is the first year I went to counseling and resurfaced all this stuff. People, even my family, don’t really understand why it affects me so much after it has been so long.

They don’t even understand why my abusive home memories still affect me the way they do either. My family, the ones I trust enough with this, just say “You should be over it by now”, “Why can’t you just get over it?” “Stop being a victim”, “I thought you’d fight more”…

Really? Come on! That just makes me want to cut myself all over again. Or just fall off the face of the earth and leave everything behind. I tell myself those things all the time. I just want to be heard. Talking about a sexual assault is still too taboo sometimes for normal conversation… so how do you know who you can confide in that can help you or just be there to listen?

How To Get Rid of Insecurity, Fear, Doubt & Worry

This answer is easy. Give it to Christ. Jesus Christ.

I become insecure because I feel ignored, under-appreciated and I can’t control the future. Fear sinks in because of my insecurity and lack of control I have over my life. I doubt because I have serious trust issues. I always “do it myself” because I don’t trust others to do it the “right way”. I worry because I don’t have faith that things will work out according to “my plan”.

When you turn everything over to Christ, your life, your worries, your happiness- that hole inside your heart is rushed with peace and comfort. For me it worked instantly. Once I started focusing on how much Jesus loves me- I didn’t and don’t feel so insignificant.

Fear is a deep dark thing and when you invite light that shines into fear- your worries become clearer. My worries are that life isn’t going to go the way we planned. I doubt because I wasn’t trusting Jesus. Jesus Christ never breaks a promise to those who love, trust, obey and serve Him. His plan is and will ALWAYS better than anything I can come up with. I can’t control the future- He can.

For example, we have been waiting 4/5 years to get into a school. This has what happened in those 4/5 years:

Year 1: My job was horrible. It paid the bills but I eventually had to leave because the boss was stealing money from me and the company. I worked there almost a year and turns out after I left that store was shut down. I would of been out of a full time job.

Our marriage was rocky for the first couple of years. He was still finishing up school and I was trying to get used to the fact the weight of providing was on my shoulders.

Year 2: I tried starting my own business selling Mary Kay. It wasn’t stable enough and created some problems with my marriage. I was pressured to keep getting inventory and that was using up our extra cash. I had a dream I would go far but the reality was it just wasn’t working out. Plus my Director (who I love) also stepped out of Mary Kay. That meant I was to be switched to a different unit where I did NOT like the other Director and it was farther away.

I would have not of been able to provide for him, for us, on that income.

Year 3: We moved a couple hours away to be closer to a school he was applying to. I had gotten a job as an Assistant Store Manager. That store was dreadful! We were written up for any theft that happened in the store from customers (because we were supposed to be able to stop them). The boss was so back stabbing. Plus we were scaled on sales (but didn’t get commission) and if you didn’t make it for 4 months straight- you were fired.

My jobs were so inconsistent- I wouldn’t of been able to stably provide.

Year 4: I got a dream job working at a Vet’s Office. I loved it and would of worked their happily for years. But I only stayed 11 months. The office manager (who hired me) left and hired another girl (who has never been a manager) to take her place. At first it was fine. Over time, that place was so busy though they didn’t have time to properly train me. I learned as I went. It was challenging. I had to restrain the animals for the doctor so they didn’t get bit.

During this time I was having so much pain internally I would have to miss work. I wouldn’t know what was going on. I would be fine one day and then the next I wouldn’t be able to walk. I went to a doctor and turns out I needed surgery.

I have Endometriosis. It’s a female condition and if it is left untreated it would have sterilized me from having children. I had to have 3 procedures done at the same time to “clear” me from everything. I had to be put on a certain birth control that minimizes the growth. It is an incurable disease that always grows back but for right now I am okay.

That surgery cost a pretty penny. Our insurance took care of most of it but our deductible was $5000. We were able to pay it off in just under a year and STILL making school payments (for his undergrad).

I would not of been able to support my husband through his extensive 2 year schooling when I needed surgery and in was in so much pain. We would of drown in debt.

Year 5: (Our current year) I am working a stable job where I am hoping to climb the ladder. And also I got hired in at just the right time to be able to transfer to a different state if need be. He also got out of CNA, which he hated, and is working at a job he loves and it pays very well.

Ever since I was 16 I have had the same car. It has been 10 years. Over the past couple years I have become more suicidal, depressed and anxious. I was sexually assaulted in that car and it always breaks down or needs something done.

One morning the pain was just too much to bare and I called a hotline. The lady I spoke to was actually near my area and provided free counseling to trauma victims. I started going. At first it was so hard to open up about it. But now I am so much healthier, my relationships are better and we were able to sell the car! 😀

I have a newer car that is better on gas, has cruise control, sun roof, 5 years newer and she is so cute! I love my new car. We were able to pay for her in cash. NO DEBT! 🙂
SO this car is able to travel distances if we have to move and won’t break down. Everything works just perfectly. Plus it is the same make and model as my husband’s car so the maintenance is easy. We just have to buy double. Another blessing is that my insurance was only raised $1.

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That is just to give you examples of how Christ’s plan is better. If hubby would of been accepted into school the first year we were waiting- I wouldn’t have a job. I would eventually have so much pain from the Endometriosis- I would have to have surgery. My car would break down. I would resent him for having the responsibility put on all my shoulders. No money saved up. I would be depressed, harming myself and still having nightmares from the sexual assault. Plus my relationships with friends, family, authority figures, strangers and women would all be “unfixed”.

I wouldn’t be healthy, happy, free of debt, worry or pain. God is good.

The Answer

It turns out the reason why Cowboy and I didn’t work out was because it wasn’t meant to be. Normally I am the type of girl that has a hard time moving, I always think of  “what if”s in my life. Cowboy had been there for after my rape, he actually would help me when I would wake up from night terrors. I could call him no matter what time of night and he would be there.

So to have a bitter end was always hard for me. I wouldn’t say because I am still in love with him because that is not true. It’s because what he has helped me through in my life as a friend. When someone comforts you through some pretty bad stuff you kinda “latch on” (is my way of putting it).

I think it is because of my abusive home life- I am dependable on other people. I couldn’t really stand up for myself. My self confidence came from how others desired me. My worth came from being wanted by boys or approval from authority figures. It’s like boys were my drug and I had to have it.

I dated lots of guys growing up and I think a little piece of me is still stuck in that “survival mode” with each and every relationship. I don’t know how to properly grieve, I never have. Even at funerals I will be numb completely until a few months to years later it hits me. Then I break down.

I want to be able to feel again. I want to give my hubby my whole heart. It doesn’t help that we (hubby an I) have a history of cheating on each other when we were dating. We both have forgiven each other and have moved on. But have I really, subconsciously? Or I am still holding back to not be completely invested. I believe I had to hold my heart back when I was a child from my mother.

Her demeaning comments, yells, screams, punishments, hits, attitude would always make me feel unwanted and guarded. I am not trying to put the blame on her but I believe this is where I learned to guard my heart. And then all my failed relationships were because my heart wasn’t there completely.

I am trying to learn how to heal my heart, get rid of my “what if”s and the guilt, move on, grieve and piece back together my heart.

The Secret Beast

Now that I have talked about the issues with my birth mother and I have publicly opened up about how life was with her- I am moving onto the next hard topic. It is probably harder than the problems I had with my mother.

We  (my therapist and I) are going to start tackling the issues of my rape & molestation, my attention seeking, how I can go from wanting sex all the time to “don’t touch me”. It will be really hard. We briefly spoke about it today and I have been doing some research on the internet. I still fantasize about rape situations so much that I want it to happen again with anyone. But during night I will have nightmares of cheating on my husband and I wake up feeling so shameful for enjoying sex with others.

I was raped two weeks (roughly) after having sex for the first time ever, by an acquaintance. But in truth that is actually my 3rd encounter with sex or something of that nature. When I was 6, I was molested, I can’t remember all details- I wish I could. Then I had sex when I was 18 for the first time with a guy I was seeing, then raped 2 weeks after someone different. So my first couple of experiences have been mostly bad.

The fantasies I have will be hostage, dominating, humiliating and forced but even just typing it- I am really liking the thoughts. BUT I did find something online that talks about people who have had sexual abuse associate sex=rape=pleasure and that I have to go through some intense brain re-wiring to know that rough sex isn’t the only way.

I just hate the fact I want attention so badly. I can drive down a road and every man I see I can see them raping me and I feel so terrified with panic attacks but the next day I could do/see the same thing and totally want it to happen.

I am really wanting help tackling this secret beast. It’s taking over my waking life, my dreams and affecting me.

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