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The Difference Between Broken and Destroyed
November 27, 2006
5:47 am
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Worried_Dad
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I know some veterans of war. Ex-soldiers.

My uncle, for instance.

He recently went to a VA PTSD group. The psychiatrist leading the group opened with something to the effect of: "Those of you who have come here hoping for a cure--forget about it. There is no cure. Best we can do is to help you cope with your symptoms."

I was never a soldier, but I sure understand my uncle's medical condition. I have the same condition.

I like it that there are new treatments being developed for the problem, maybe there will even be a cure someday.

My latest realizations.

1) Maybe some of my symptoms will slowly get better or resolve, but I had better get used to it: This is how I am now.

2) "How I am now" seems anathema to my egoic idea of "how I was" or "how I should be." That feels like death. It's creepy. It is kind of like being murdered and then getting up and investigating, and protesting your own murder. It's like the movie "Ghost" or something.

3) This is the big one.

Ok, maybe I lost some brain cells. Maybe I am not "the same" as I was before. Maybe my ego really was pretty much obliterated.

But that's just my ego--So what if 90 percent of my ego was wiped out? That left 10% and something for sure grew back.

Maybe I'm not the same as before. Maybe in some ways I'm not "as good" as I was before. But maybe the "new me" is better than the old me in some ways. It's not impossible.

Maybe the old WD ego-machine is, by my old values and fucntions, irrevocably broken.

But broken is very different from being destroyed. And a broken person can learn to do different things well enough that you wouldn't even necessarily know they were broken if they didn't tell you.

Someone, some beautiful, talented parts of me had to die for me to be like this. But this is not death. Maybe it's like, a second life.

November 27, 2006
6:56 am
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snowlover
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Worried Dad,

Wow, I mean, really amazing analogy. You have no idea how much those words just tocuhed me. I couldnt have read that at a better time in my life.

Broken...but NOT destroyed.

Thank you, sincerely,

Snow (Yikes, I just posted on the LIBS side??? How the heck did I get by the bouncer at the door...lol)

November 27, 2006
10:36 am
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mamacinnamon
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Snow: Too funny when I'm just drinking my morning coffee and my head still hurts. The bouncer must have fallen asleep in those new robin egg blue longjohns I bought him; comfy and warm.

I too agree that this is a powerful statement. Think I'll set it to cross stitch.

I can see this and relate. I was broken but not destroyed. I look at myself now vs. who I was before the evil x and I can see both changes good and not so good.

I look back and wonder how and why did I take his crap when now I have no problem getting in hubby's face. Ex. One and only time now hubby ever pulled back to hit me and I got in his face and said "Do it and you WILL go to jail". Why could I not do that before w/ evil x? I finally did but it was after we were divorced.

Also, I have no problem letting what I want to say be heard. Before I'd just not say a word and suffer in silence. Now I sometimes don't know when to let it go or shut up. I do at times keep silent, but it invariably will come out of my mouth when I just cannot keep it to myself any longer. Now that's not to say that some things are not better off not bein said. I'm talking about the things that upset me. There is a difference.

I still after all these years ask myself why did I not just walk out the door the night I heard the gun cock and he said he would kill himself if I walked out that door. That was the beginning of my hell. That question I would really like the answer to.

WD, is there an manuscript of the speech this guy gave? I'd truly like to see the whole thing if possible or maybe a site that this particular guy has his info on?

BROKEN...BUT NOT DESTROYED

November 27, 2006
10:47 am
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truthBtold
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Whew, what an honest post.

I think you answered your own question - broken perhaps, but not destroyed.

Your latest realizations sound to me like real progress in the sense that you are experiencing the death of "how you were" or "how you should be" and have come to terms with"how you are right now."

Pretty heavy stuff. You must have had to get to a pretty honest place within yourself to come to those conclusions. Not an easy thing to do at all!!!!!

I think that you have accomplished something quite difficult and significant and should feel proud of yourself for venturing so deep inside to come to these realizations!!!!

I have been diagnosed with PTSD as well because of my childhood and remember at one point my absolute obsession with mosaics...(i.e. - shattered pieces.) I would just look at the different pics and relate first hand on how these mosaics reminded me of my inner self.
(I think that it helped me keep my sanity - to see something in a physical form which described what I was feeling inside.)

Now, I am not so much into that anymore....at least not at the obsession/desperation level I once was. I guess it does gets better over time.

Thank you for sharing.

November 27, 2006
2:29 pm
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Worried_Dad
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Hi MammaC,

The guy was just a shrink at the VA hospital.

All I heard of his spiel was what my uncle told me. "Those of you who have come here hoping for a cure--forget about it. There is no cure. Best we can do is to help you cope with your symptoms."

The rest is just my meanderings.

November 27, 2006
2:34 pm
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Hi WD,

Your meanderings sound very much like the kind of realization that people (and their loved ones) come to after a brain injury.

Yes, rehabilitation is about mourning the losses of the "before" and learning how to live the best life possible in the "after". And, even with loss of brain tissue it is amazing what kind of "after" may be possible.

peace to you, kroika

November 27, 2006
4:24 pm
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truthBtold
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kroika,

Great point. I never thought about it that way. Well said.

November 30, 2006
8:52 am
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sleepless in uk
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Ah the difference between broken and destroyed....I consider myself broken but not destroyed. And I intend to put myself back together, stronger than before....different but as good or better. Certainly healthier

As in the Beatles song Blackbird

Take these broken wings and learn to fly

all your life

You were only waiting for this moment to arrive

December 1, 2006
4:05 pm
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truthBtold
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sleepless in UK,

Great quote! Great song!!

Yep - pretty much sums it all up!!!!

December 2, 2006
2:30 am
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free
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Yeah.....

For me there was a grieving process....sometimes, still grieve. Wish I could go back.....woulda, coulda, shoulda. But wouldn't, couldn't, didn't.

And now, here I am.

It's definitely weird when I think about it sometimes.

A different life.

free

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