I saw myself today. And at first, I didn’t even realise it was me. She was huddled against the cold of winter in thick folds of grey and black, stepping carefully out of the car. Her husband – one hand closing the door, the other instinctively, lovingly, resting on the small of her back – said something […]
It was meant to be a good day. A day full of positive distractions. A day of moving forward with new ambitions. The type of day when we least expect PTSD triggers to strike. The type of day that we both happily let our guard down. Though maybe it was because of that, when the intrusions unexpectedly began to flood […]
I had a lot to think about last Saturday. And I also had a lot of time to think, since my Saturday began at 1:41am. That was when I first woke up and realised my husband was missing. His side of the bed was untouched. His car was gone. I don’t know if I can […]
The best thing I did today was ignore my son. Yes, it’s true that he’s unable to fix his own meals, true that he can’t manage to dress himself, and true that he can’t even go to the toilet on his own. Yes, it’s also true that I am my son’s main carer, but today I […]
“Mummy, why is Daddy so angry?” I feel my throat tighten as familiar tears prick at the corner of my eyes. My daughter sobs into her pillow, she doesn’t see me trying to empty my face of the distress that rattles me. The turbulence of my husband’s anger still hangs in the air, even though […]
I’ve heard it time and time again. Though, admittedly, it has always seemed quite abstract to me. But now it’s becoming a very real and very bitter pill to swallow. I can no longer avoid the truth. No matter how much I wish, no matter how much I persuade, no matter how much I present my […]
It has been a pleasant distraction this week, after five years of supporting my husband in his hazy world of relentless PTSD, which has no clearly defined approach or guaranteed treatment options, to concentrate instead on a completely different medical problem. My son’s vague set of ongoing health complaints has finally delivered us to the paediatrician this […]
When I married my husband ten years ago, I had known him for four years. I knew a lot about him. And he knew a lot about me. We had a clear plan of where we were heading and what we wanted our married life to look like. There was so much to look forward […]
At a time that is usually bristling with stress and anger, is there anything better than an impromptu moment of hilarity with your children? Dinner time. And a special treat for dessert that night – a few tasty sweets each. Predictably, our three kids each selected and devoured their sweet quotas in an instant. Their […]
Every time I call my husband and he doesn’t pick up, I’m taken back to a good place. A better time. Because when he doesn’t pick up, his voice mail does. Just a simple, to-the-point greeting, recorded many years ago. Many tears ago.
August is our month. The month when I try not to notice the date. In two weeks it will be our day to light three candles. One for a paramedic, courageous in the face of a nightmare, who was broken not only by that day, but by so many yesterdays too.
Sometimes, PTSD rains down on us. Just like a storm hits, unforeseen. We have no choice. We weather it. But the rain passes, eventually, and the ground begins to dry. Or does it? The next day, we desperately wait for the sun to come out so we don’t have to think about the storm that crossed […]
It was 22:34 when I arrived home from my evening at book club. My one routine night out, for a welcome few hours of diversion, laughter and friends. It was 22:36 when I realised the house was silent and still. Empty, but for the slumbering children. No sign of the husband I had farewelled earlier in the evening. It […]