That feeling of falling, do you know it? I feel it from time to time. Usually it’s in the morning, in a semi-conscious state, when my eyes are crusted with the mildew of dreams well and truly dreamed. But sometimes it’s felt during the day, at work. During a meeting that requires face time with colleagues, or when I’m sitting in the War Room with my boss, going over the metrics – those damned KPIs – that determine whether I’m still worth my salt in salary. It’s that internal sense of being on a roller coaster ride, and the screws are loose on the track up ahead. Not a great way to ride life’s dips and turns, let alone a roller coaster.
Lately, I am trying to hand over this falling-feeling, and the self-willfulness that accompanies it, to something bigger than me. I know, I know. I don’t want to be the guy who talks about Jesus as his savior. So I won’t. I won’t be that guy (you’re welcome). I’m sure Jesus was a top bloke, but he ain’t my savior. No. But when I talk about something greater, I am talking about God. You can replace the word God with the Universe, or with Higher Power or Jimmy Fallon, if that helps you to swallow these here musings on something greater than me. Whatever floats your spiritual boat, ay.
I just know I can’t do recovery from complex-PTSD on my own. I’ve tried, and it didn’t work. On more than one occasion, my efforts resulted with me in the high-dependency unit of a psych ward, discussing with a fellow patient the merits of doing star jumps to gain the pretty – albeit equally crazy – girl’s attention. Insanity. Everyone knows that star jumps don’t get the pretty girl, least of all in the HD unit of your local psych hospital. Nope. Truth is, without some thing bigger than me in my life, I’m lost to my own insanity. My thinking’s twisted; the lens with which I filter the world is foggy and smudged, and maybe a little cracked, too. So I need something big enough to fix said lens, or something that will replace it with the promise of something clearer, more transparent, to see me through rough times.
Enter God. I know I can’t trust most of my thoughts, so I try not to. I hand them over and try to stay present to myself. Complex-PTSD is a disorder of the past, I’ve said many times. That is, I’m not here and now. Rather, I’m off somewhere back then, when dad was yelling at mum, or hitting me, or when I was getting bullied at school. All traumas that have no bearing on my physical safety anymore. Yet I feel their collective weight baring down on my shoulders still. Emotional baggage? Sure. Do you take carry on too?
Life’s uncertainties make this unpleasant feeling of free-falling arch up though. The great unknown’s not that great, let me tell you. It’s filled with niggling questions like “How are you going to pay rent without a job?”; “When are you going to stop being so afraid to put yourself out there and live the life you want to live?” and “Why can’t you just let go?” They’re uncertainties because I don’t know their bloody answers, much as I’d bloody well like to. Where’s God in all this uncertainty?
I don’t know. Alls I know is that my current MO aint workin’, as I said. So I blog, and I call it out. I do yoga, and I meditate. I speak to my friends, the ones who seem to get the complexities that accompany complex-PTSD. I try to do exercise. I catch up with the mental illness support group I organise through meetup.com, and I relate to how painfully normal they all are, these young people with mental illness. And how misunderstood they are, too. I try to create the environment in my life that I didn’t get as a kid and growing up. It’s slow going. God’s work is slow going. Not in my time, neither.
Serenity now, God!