Fire Swamps

by Mrs. Smith on September 23, 2018

So hey, facebook. How’s it going.

Me? Oh, you know. Same old, same old.

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In and out of the fire swamp. By now, I’m pretty good at navigating its “terrors.” I know what clicking & popping means. I’ve spent enough time drowning in lightning sand that I can spot it quite a ways off. I don’t like fighting of ROUS’s, but sometimes it can’t be helped, so you do what you gotta do.

At this point, I’m pretty tired of it… Are we there yet?
Sometimes, I wake up and legit would rather… not have to wake up. (Today, for example.) That’s what happens in fire swamps. But it’s not really me that feels that way. It’s my inner 6yo, and she has a loud, loud voice.

All you can do is keep going. So that’s I do. Get up anyway. Do Pilates. Keep children fed and alive. Try to help their world not look like a fire swamp even if mine does.

The silver lining is when my perspective enables me to help other people also dealing with fire swamps. I love when that happens. It’s nice to make a difference, however small.

I actually don’t particularly love being brutally honest like this. Eventually, though, I get pretty sick of pretending everything’s fine when it’s just not. For example. That day I locked my keys in the car last week? It was not just me being spacey/absent-minded.

It was me feeling weirdly almost barely able to function (if that evening had a soundtrack, you’d be hearing some pretty loud “click, click, click”) — think brain fog times a million — and my having to keep my act together enough to go out in public anyway. (oh, man, that was so lame!)

Maybe I should have stayed home, but this weird-can’t-function thing hit me so hard so fast, it left me with no brain space for figuring that kind of puzzle out, so all I could do was just go with the previously-laid-out plan…

and then 8 hours later, having some incredibly painful memories resurface and steamroll me.

Ah-HA. So THAT’S why the crazy brain-fog. Man, there is some rated-x stuff in my past. Ugh. When those kind of memories are getting close to the surface like that, my brain/emotions go a little haywire. It’s nuts.

But that’s the fire swamp of trauma recovery. That’s my world sometimes. I’m getting used to it. I keep reminding myself that there actually IS a lot of progress. There is. For example, I don’t have panic attacks around any men ever any more. In fact, I do most of my healing work with men now and prefer it. It’s super awesome how far I’ve come, actually… but most of you had no idea back then what was going on.

And then, there was a big chunk of time where I had to kind of put it all on hold because I just didn’t have time to deal with fire swamps. Homeschooling 5 kids for two school years. Ain’t no one got time for intensive trauma recovery with that kind of stuff going on! So 80-90% of my life was “awesome” and I just privately dealt with 10% in the background being less-optimal and it was “good enough” for a long time.

Back to the trenches. This really IS better. I want to reclaim that last 10% even it’s kind of a hellish process. “We are men of action. Lies do not become us.” It’s ultra-lame how difficult it is, BUT — I have a feeling it’s not actually going to take forever. Not really. And I have a TON of awesome resources that make navigating fire swamps a lot easier. My goal this week is to figure out how to dive into the fireswamp and still have energy to come back out of it.

I *think* where I’m at right now, I might be able to contain the pain and force it into boundaries. I *think* I’m close enough to the edge of the fire swamp that I can actually step out of it and enjoy scenery that isn’t going to blow up on me.

Like this: Wake up in crap land. Dangit. Write a big long bizarre status about the battle going on in my world… and then, poof. Leave it alone for the rest of the day. Or at least half a day. Leave that battle in that stream of consciousness and do “normal” for at least 3 or 4 (or 5? or 6?) hours before giving that wounded inner child some attention again… and then repeat.

So. If you read this far, good job. Now you know more than you did before about how I’m really doing.

No automatic alt text available.Lord, I’m super grateful for the people in my life who are awesome enough to see past the drama I’m working through and love me anyway. I don’t particularly like feeling like I’ve lost myself in all this pain, and people who still see the real me through it are… invaluable. I am SO so so so blessed in the friend department.

The moral of the story is, you just REALLY don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes in people’s lives.

PS: If you’re stuck in a fire swamp and need to commiserate, hit me up.

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