Well if that’s the weekend then we’ve had it. Where on earth did that go!! Although it has been a very productive one to be fair. After a busy week I had every intention of having a quiet one.
PTSD symptoms are up and down and vary in degree of severity day by day. There are a full list of symptoms as with all other medical conditions. Unlike most physical illnesses however, the symptoms of mental illnesses chop and change dependant on mood, sleep, environment, triggers….. you get the picture. So one day you wake up following a terrible dream and you cannot function for the rest of the day due to recurring flashbacks. The next morning you could jump out of bed full of vigor, feeling like you could take on the world.
Two main dibilitating symptoms frequently affecting me are ‘loss of motivation’ and ‘poor concentration’. When I look back a few years I had the capacity and motivation to do anything. Anyone who knows me will tell you I never stopped. I used to always study, improving and challenging myself whenever I could. As well as busying myself professionally I used to organise various charity events. I just didn’t stop.
Sadly over the last couple of years it’s took all I had just to get out of bed!!! I dragged myself up because I had my little doggy to look after. Getting dressed was just a hassle for me and would just pull on some tracky bottoms and a hoodie. I wasn’t bothered what I looked like and sadly I let myself go. I had no inclination to do anything for me or anyone else. I couldnt even be bothered to talk. I would take my little girl out, come back, TV on, plenty of coffee, biscuits and a day on the sofa. Some days I never even bothered to open the curtains!! Some days would be better than others but next to nothing was happening in or around me. I just completely switched off from the world.
I decided I needed to do something to try to get me off the helter skelter to doom. I needed another reason to get out of bed, out of my trackies and into something that would give me purpose. This is when I decided to start setting up my own decorating and handywork service. It provides immediate results giving me a nice warm fuzzy feeling. I also decided that I needed to try to go and socialise more. The concern I had was my panic attacks. If these could be settled it would enable me to not fear walking out of my front door. I made contact with a couple of therapist and they said they could help me. I will discuss this in a separate post as I eluded to on a previous blog. I will open up about my treatment in another week or so.
I currently have many jobs half done in and around my home. My head spins with things I need/want to do. I need to complete the kitchen, decorate the landing, finish decorating my bedroom, finish sewing my bedroom curtains, finish building a cabinet, finish the spare room and finish the rear garden. Notice I say ‘finish’ on all the tasks. This is because I started all these jobs at a time when I woke fully motivated. Sadly this doesn’t last all day. I work and work but then suddenly I just don’t want to do anything else! Well, I want to do it but my mind and body will not allow it. As the day goes by I become really tired mentally and physically around 2ish. I then completely switch off and nothing else gets done. This frustrates me hugely because I used to have so much capacity.
This weekend there was a big achievement in my life. On Saturday I worked on my front garden and pathways. On a couple of occassions I wanted to give up but I forced myself to carry on and I finished it!! I felt a great deal of satisfaction and I keep looking at it and smiling now. I’m aware that for some this seems so trivial but to me, having not had the will or capacity to do anything, this was a great move forward. I have achieved something for myself. I work on other people’s houses and I don’t give up because I don’t like letting anyone down. It forces me to carry on but I find it difficult to motivate myself for me….but I’m slowly reconnecting.