PTSD and Yesterday

PTSD  has the type of power that slices through time and renders the past, present and future to exist in our waking and sleeping hours.  Time becomes the servant of trauma; hence making trauma feel timeless and unending. How can someone who has never faced earth shattering events say, ""Let go. It is in the past." 

Trauma is an event that challenges the control mechanisms of time. It makes us feel unsafe because the world is experienced as such. I mean just because it happened yesterday does not mean it can't happen tomorrow. Crimes, drugs, violence, abuse, death and war do not cease to exist because they happened yesterday. They are here. They are realities and a person with PTSD knows those realities all too well. While most have the luxury of existing in a world where are safeguarded, the person with PTSD has had front seat in the theater of pain, or even cast as starring role. 

PTSD involves respecting that time is the child of truth. So please stop telling people with PTSD to simply, "Get over it. It's in the past." Their past could very well be your future.  Respect their vision; especially when you judge with mere sight.  

 And from one of my favorite poets, Khalil Gibran, "Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow:"

I said to my friend, “You see her leaning upon the arm of that man. It was but yesterday that she leaned thus upon my arm.”

And my friend said, “And tomorrow she will lean upon mine.”

I said, “Behold her sitting close at his side. It was but yesterday she sat close beside me.”

And he answered, “Tomorrow she will sit beside me.”

I said, “See, she drinks wine from his cup, and yesterday she drank from mine.”

And he said, “Tomorrow, from my cup.”

Then I said, “See how she gazes at him with love, and with yielding eyes. Yesterday she gazed thus upon me.”

And my friend said, “It will be upon me she gazes tomorrow.”

I said, “Do you not hear her now murmuring songs of love into his ears? Those very songs of love she murmured but yesterday into my ears.”

And my friend said, “And tomorrow she will murmur them in mine.”

I said, “Why see, she is embracing him. It was but yesterday that she embraced me.”

And my friend said, “She will embrace me tomorrow.”

Then I said, “What a strange woman.”

But he answered, “She is like unto life, possessed by all men; and like death, she conquers all men; and like eternity, she enfolds all men.”

CC CounselingComment