Online Classes

Monday, June 8, 2009

Flashbacks of yesterday, full moons today, this time tomorrow I'll be okay...

I didn't post anything yesterday. I wasn't sure I wanted to talk about an experience I had Saturday night. Most of you who have been following me for awhile now know I just celebrated the one year anniversary of a moment I can never forget. It's a vivid moment like these shots of the moon I took tonight.

Sometimes memories will shine down on one's heart and create a ripple effect just like the reflection of the moon on the water. You may not see a full moon if it's hidden behind clouds. But once the moon slips out from behind the cloud cover there's no denying it's presence.

PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder) is kind of like that. It's like having a wound that no one can see until various reasons or situations, some of which make no sense at all, cause it to start bleeding. I had a sudden, severe bout 0f PTSD Saturday night driving home from a really great evening. Suddenly the memories, the reflections, images, sights and sounds of the auto accident I'd been in over a year ago crashed into me again. Suddenly, and with no mercy. As suddenly as the car that hit us---the thoughts were back---triggered by some young guys driving erratically. The sounds of their speeding motorcycles, and cars zooming past our car felt like a thousand shards of glass piercing my body.

I was instantly reduced to a sobbing, terrified hostage to my thoughts, my memories, and my worst fears. I couldn't breathe, my throat closed up, my pulse and heart rate increased dramatically. I felt caged; I felt trapped. One hand instinctively reached to cover my eyes, and moved as quickly to cover my mouth to hold back a scream. That scream got stuck in my throat like a jagged rock. In my other hand I held a beautiful mason jar full of flowers I just been given by two beautiful sister's at one of the art galleries we just come from.

Bleeding Hearts, Queen Anne's Lace, and some other fairy garden varieties with perfume spilling out of them like heavenly scented clouds. I gripped the bottom of the Mason jar so hard I'm surprised I didn't break it. My hand ached from the imprints the jar left on it.

In an instant a wonderful evening was tweaked by an unwelcome flashback. I'd not had one that severe for awhile. It crushed my previous notion I was out of the woods, and finally free from panic-anxiety attacks. I was blind-sided...unexpectedly just like the car accident.

I'll need to smell these lovely flowers a little more intently. Gaze at the moon for hidden messages of hope, and encouragement. Write about my fears out in the open to give them less room to breed inside my heart. Blog about it to my dear blog friends... Vent, and humbly ask for a couple of "Go get em' Lille!!" "You can do it" You're not a big baby. Moments like these will become less and less..."

For more understanding about PTSD, I suggest you read Rain at "Mountain Mamma" or Owen at Magic Lantern Showen . These two people have helped me tremendously to gain insights to recovery, "am I normal???" questions or is it normal if this... or this.... or that happens... I receive hope, and insight from them just by visiting their blogs. Thank you, Rain, and Owen.

If you are newer to my blog, read more about why I started the blog or about the accident listed in the labels....

And thank you dear friends who faithfully come by the tree house to visit. I love how you all make charming, encouraging and down-right funny comments on my blog.... Thank you~~


  1. Looking at the first photo I think we were seeing the moon at the same time last night.
    I am now reaching across cyberspace to give you a big hug.

  2. You have been selected by THE MOM'S JOURNEY to recieve the LOVELY BLOG AWARD.

    Come by my blog to recieve your award ...& don't forget to share it with your favorite bloggers!

    Safe hugz,
    A Mom's Journey

  3. Hi Lille,
    Thank you for such a heartfelt post.
    The fairy flowers look beautiful and seem to be a gift that represents hope and somehow being connected to nature we can be healed.
    When my younger sister died I use to get panic attacks, so to try and heal myself I spent a lot of time in nature, (woodlands) and illustrating, to focus my mind on positive things. I also meditate every morning to keep my thoughts straight.
    My sister worked as an Ecologist and studied wild flowers-plants and the habitats of endangered wildlife. She inspired me to illustrate fairy illustrations. I feel everyone should have some kind creative outlet to keep us mentally and emotionally balanced. When I am painting I feel free of the panic constraints.
    Your full Moon Photos are really magical. Thank you very much for sharing your great work.
    Love. Jo.x

  4. Hugs! Sending good thoughts your way.
    tina :)

  5. I truly believe everything happens for a reason. I'm sorry you had to experience that, but the timing couldn't be better... I read Ali the beginning of your post. She will be following you. I have told her how we all have things in our head - some more than others - but it's still 'normal'. She thinks of herself as 'not normal'. But what's a normal reaction to a horrific situation? PTSD. So we'll all be here pulling together, lifting each other up! So don't despair over the episode. We're still right here.

  6. The moon photos are beautiful. There is something about the sight of a full moon that provokes a moodiness in me.

    Your story is unfamiliar to me but I am glad that you are able to share your feelings. Keeping in mind that life can change in one swift moment helps me place all my daily minor challenges in perspective. I needed to be reminded today. Thank you.

  7. ***Dee...
    Thank very much. I will pick it up later after I finish up some doctor appts. Very kind of you to award me this, Dee. :-)


  8. ***joanne May...
    What a lovely comment, and even lovelier that you shared a piece of your own pain with to help ease mine. I'm so sorry you lost your sister, and it's caused you panic, and pain. Thank you so much.

    I use all those tools to keep me out of my head and more into my heart. The being in a car thing is where I need tools to cope with the panic that sweeps me up like a crumpled piece of paper, and blows me about as if I'm made of tissue paper. I'm working on it. Wouldn't it be great if we could just fly (like Wonder Woman) every where we needed to go....

    Huggggzzzzz, joanne. thank you so much

  9. ***Tina...
    Oh sometimes a hug is all we need to pick ourselves back up again. Thanks.... ;-)

  10. ***MzzLily and Ali...
    I'm so thankful to have your friendship, love, and support. It's hard to remember sometimes that healing takes time... and sometimes lots of time. One step forward. You made me get all misty-eyed ova here in the tree house. My kitty ran to get me a tissue. Love and hugzzzz to you both. Can't wait to start reading your blog, Ali. :-)

  11. ***SQ Judy....
    That was the best hug!!! Thank you so much. Your friendship is beyond special, it's amazing. Big ole slobbery hugggzzzzzzz back to you, SQ... ok I'll keep the slobbers to myself. I was having a lovey passionate moment in my wee heart..... :-)
    Hugzzzzz and love, Judy.

  12. ***Rae...
    So true, the moon has powers beyond what we understand or half the time even notice. Thank you for the sweet comments on my work, and a reminder for me as well, to stay in the moment. It's nice having you here in the tree house.
    Hugzzzz, Rae.

  13. I thought about your during the full moon since you had said you looked forward to it.

    Wow, one anniversary down, the hardest year behind you.

  14. hi...i just found your blog and i will go and read what happened but first i want to write this to you. you described exactly how PTSD works. it comes from no where and you never know when it will happen or what will trigger it. i have lived with this since i was a child. i was in therapy for 30 years. the only way i have learned to handle it is by reminding myself the moment it starts that these feelings come from the disorder and not the reality. it's sort of like fight or flight. before learning how to handle my PTSD, i would let it take me over and run with me. i would be frightened of my feelings and let them control me. now, when it happens, i stop and take a deep breath and tell myself that my feelings are not going to control me. i let myself really feel what is going on in a calm manner and i try to figure out what the trigger was that made the PTSD kick in. i hope this helps a bit!

  15. My heart and prayers go out to you. I have suffered for many years from panic attacks and agoraphobia. It is horrible to be trapped that way. I know you will be fine, it just takes time to heal. When you fall get back up and start again.


  16. helo Lille ! once again your post is amaizing .it is always a pleasure to come back to your tree house .
    thank you for have visited my blog , it improved a lot the beaut of my page.
    ciau !! see you soon !

  17. Those are lovely photos sorry to hear about Saturday night hopefully with time and gods help it will get easier for you.

  18. I'm no good with these things. I never know what to say. Will a hug do?

  19. From where I come from, people used to say, that 'the temple of Janus is closed', meaning that there is only one door open of the two, leading towards peace, light and therefore life.

  20. THANK YOU! It worked!!! Anyone reading this, Blogger is having some bugs, and some of us are having trouble viewing certain blogs (operation aborted, page cannot display). I was having this trouble with Lille Diane's and she was wonderful enough to move her Followers gadget to the bottom of her page - which Blogger suggested could fix the bug! And it worked!!! Thanks again Sista!!!
    Knock on wood, hope it keeps working! LOL

  21. ***Thank you everyone....

    I'm feeling a little better today. I'll have to work my way back up to driving a few miles on the freeway again. But hey... I'm worth it. ;-)

    I am writing the quote down that mo'ikeha wrote, and placing it on my dream board, in my car or I may just step up to the bravery plate and get a big arse tattoo on Popeye like arms..... to remind me life's lessons are a choice. I choose peace, light, and life.

    "From where I come from, people used to say, that 'the temple of Janus is closed', meaning that there is only one door open of the two, leading towards peace, light and therefore life."

    ***Sista Rain...
    So happy you are back, and can read my stuff... I missed you, Winston and Spencer! I'm so sorry you had to go through so much to be able to read or leave comments! bleepity bleep bleep bloggy-spots...

    My world is right, too....seeing you here. Your visits are something I look forward to! Love you, Sista~

    thanks, a hug is just what I needed. perfect!! ahhhhh...

    Yes, a whole year plus a little. I'm on my way. I spent the last 2 days painting, and it appears to have been a great way to channel the bump in the road of my sweet lil life...
    I'll be over later to read what's going on in "snowbrush country"

    hugzzzz, my friend.

    Firstly let me say I think the Universe sent you at just the exact moment in time to my blog. It's a God sending an angel kinda thing. Each one of your words are exactly what I need to hear, eat like protein, chew slowly for good digestion, and savor the after-taste like a fine wine... or big ole hunkin' peice of carrot cake with buttercream frosting! Oh baby...

    I sincerely hope you will stop by again to visit. I had to go take a peek to see your world, and I will definitely be back. Playful, whimsical and wonderful!

    Thank you so much and welcome to the Tree House! Very kind of you to join in, and leave me with a hug. Thanks... ;-)

    I could feel a Sasha kiss, too. Thank you so much!! Bark bark


    Oh you are most welcome! Thank you for your sweet comments. chow... ummmm ciao :-)

  22. hey...thanks for visiting my blog! since i commented on your post i have been thinking about PTSD and about how it blind sides us. when a traumatic event occurs we numb ourselves to it to be able to experience it without too much trauma at the time. i've always thought of it as swallowing the "munch scream". (the painting by edvard munch). the scream can't stay inside forever. it has to come out. it wants to come out. it will never go away until it gets out once and for all. when the tiniest little thing crops up that opens a window for the scream it goes for it. we try to keep it in and that is when we get in trouble. just like some people imagine they have a pac man inside them eating at their cancer cells when they are trying to beat cancer, i feel i have to embrace the scream and let it go. so when something sets off my PTSD instead of trying to control the feelings i sort of let them wash over me and i ride the wave. i have found this to much less frightening than letting myself be overwhelmed by my emotions. i hope some of this makes some sense.

  23. Man I hate anxiety attacks. I hate how they just sneak up on you like that. I do suffer from anxiety attacks once in a while, in fact I had one on Sunday. I had a great morning and afternoon but when I got home, I started feeling it come on. Seriously, an email from someone turned it on really. I literally had to get out of the house and go shopping at target and I felt so much better by the time I got home. I'm sure mine are not as bad as yours but I can imagine it is really a terrible experience. I think mine are and the way you describe yours, I think "oh man, I thought I had it rough." Having my blog really helps though. It is good to be able to speak your mind and receiving peoples comments.
    Hope your feeling better.

  24. A very powerful post!
    I have never experienced that intense an attack but know hwere they arise.
    I fell asleep behind the wheel of our car 24 years ago Aug. 1, drifted to the side of the road, woke up and tried to pull us back on the road. Needless to say it didn't wor. I rolled the car. I had various injuries (severe whiplash the worst), my 9 mos. old dau. still carries the scars acros her forehead and my (now ex) husband had his hand crushed. I did not drive for a year. After 24 years I still cannot drive a major highway. There are certain places I cannot drive. I will find another way to get somewhere if I need to. I can be in a car, justnot driving. I just don't allow myself to get in a position that I drive where I know I can't. I am a good, careful drive - just restricted.
    My heart and prayers go out to you. You are very brave.
    All the best.
    Your moon shots were so lovely.

  25. I missed this post, and I want to say I am proud of you! I will keep you in my prayers. And I love the mason jar of flowers. And just think of how far youve come now a yr since the accident! And by the way you are def painting great! I really like the poppies!

  26. ***jaz...

    yes it does! thank you for even taking the time to write to me, encourage me, and share with me things that will help me.

    ***Jess... and precious Chloe.....

    You have certainly been through your own trials, hun. You are such a doll and thank you for the encouraging words about my poppies. I know you like my pants... LOL You are a 70's girl at heart!


    ***LadyBug Michelle...

    Thank you for the hug via comments. Hmmmm.. "Target therapy..." I'm gonna hafta get me some of that!!! Yes, blogging helps a LOT! I'm so glad i shared. It has helped me get through this episode in ways i never expected. I'll pop over to visit tonight when I call it an evening painting.

    WOW... I am so sorry you had this experience and are still dealing with it. I'm not sure how this works but it helps knowing you are not alone, doesn't it? I will keep you in my prayers. I will keep on trying just like you are & am learning to enjoy taking the back roads. One mile at a time, right? Thank you for such a powerful, and transparent comment. I needed to hear this. Thank you!!!

  27. Terrific blog - but you already know that. I love the idea of keeping the PTSD at bay by continuing on with your list of 101 things. Why do I love this? Becauase I'm a trauma survivor, too, who cured her PTSD by determining to get on with life despite how difficult that was.

    After struggling with undiagnosed PTSD for 25 years, and then battling my way to recovery for another 3, I'm now into my 2nd year of beiing 100% PTSD-free. I write a healing PTSD blog and am launching a PTSD advocacy organization.

    I have a weekly feature on the blog: 'Survivors Speak' are survivors writing about some positive aspect of healing. Would you be interested in contributing? Contact me...

  28. ***Michelle...

    Thank you very much. I checked your blog out. WOW! How awesome are you for being not only a survivor but one who took the "bully" by the horns, and kicked it to the curb. YES I would love to contribute.

    Thank you for finding me!


Thanks for stopping by Woodstock Lily! Leave a comment and I'll reply as soon as I can~


Blog Widget by LinkWithin