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Monday, August 23, 2010

Time for bed

When I was pregnant, I used to get severe cramps in my calves and feet. I could feel them coming. I knew if I stretched out those muscles, they were less likely to cramp up--so I did. I stretched, and massaged, and sometimes, just for good measure, I'd soak my legs and feet in a warm bath before bed because the cramps were worse at night. And then, just as I was falling asleep, I would very slowly tense the muscles up...just to see if they'd cramp...which, of course, they did...which sent me into spasms of painful giggles and gasps...and I had to hop around the room trying to work out the knots in my feet and legs...

Darrin would shake his head in wonder because he knew I was tensing on purpose. He couldn't understand why I would do that to myself--but I just had to know. I had to know if there was a cramp lurking inside me. I had to check to see if the tendency to grip and knot was still in my muscles. I couldn't help it--I was compelled somehow, even though I knew what the outcome would be. I blame pregnancy because everyone knows that state of being makes women insane--and men, too, if they spend much time with pregnant women.

However, I also have to admit to being compulsive, a little bit, naturally. Sometimes, even when I know the outcome will be less than optimal, I still try the waters, just to find out. Tonight, however, I am turning the tide.

In the past when this particularly obnoxious PTSD symptom has hit (I'm speaking of the feeling of loneliness which does not want to go away and makes me feel miserable), I've stayed up long into the wee hours of morning, just to see if it will go away. It never does. It only becomes more painful and intense and morphs into a myriad of other symptoms which are all unmanageable because I'm sleepy and exhausted.

But tonight, I think I'll go to bed. I've become adept, once again, at lucid dreaming, so should the symptom inspire nasty dreams, I know what to do to change that. And I've not had a flashback for three weeks now (hoping this will become an entire month), so I'm feeling much stronger overall. Besides, I know the symptom is not going to go away, and everyone in my house is asleep, and now is a very bad time for me to be alone, thinking, obsessing...

I know my limits and tonight is not the time for me to be checking to see if there's an emotional Charlie horse waiting to bind my guts.

Good night.  :-)


  1. Gosh, you articulate so many of my quirks and tendencies. I just have to keep wondering where my traumatic past is that causes them.
    I'll just try your remedies and be thankful that you're there.

  2. I don't think you have to have trauma to be quirky, you just have to be amazing and unique. :-)

  3. Imagining you intentionally triggering charlie horses made me laugh. It feels like such a you thing to do. And it kinda feels like something I'd do, too.

    I'm glad you've been flashback-free. I hope it continues.