Wednesday, November 6, 2013

The Coping Void

I used to really struggle with anxiety, depression, and PTSD, but 2 summers ago I just broke in a way that allows me to function pretty consistently without meds or severe downswings in my functioning.  Disassociation.

One day two summers ago when I was fighting a horrible legal battle with an abusive ex, which I really don't intend to write much about in this blog-  I saw a man face down in the street on the corner of Powell and 39th.  I stopped my car and got out to help him (back in the day I was an EMT and my default has always been to Good Samaritan-up in these sitches.)

The man had a knife and was clearly delusional.  As he came after me, I did everything wrong and it was dumb luck that I wasn't stabbed.   I've never dealt with it--- I can't.  It's in there somewhere, in The Coping Void.  At the time, my life was so stressful and traumatic- I almost thought this horrific event was funny.  When I told the DA what I was dealing with in my life, he didn't press me to testify but entered in my plea to the judge that the man get some psychiatric help- not merely jail time, because it felt to me that he struggled to NOT attack me in that moment where he totally could have, and I felt so grateful for that.  Today- I can't remember whether or not my son was in the car.  It's the kind of thing I should remember- so the distortions surrounding the event in my memory clue me into the level of trauma I experienced, but I can't really feel it.

And I don't really feel a lot of things, and this is how I function.  I was in a counseling session before we moved out of state, and she said I had pronounced disassociation, really common in people struggling post-trauma.  I think that little slight of hand/brain, is how I plod ahead most days.

I'm there.  I think I'm slowly improving-- but not quite enough to really function normally.  I'm not quite all there.  I've also been diagnosed with ADD, and a low dose of those meds does help me focus, but I think the root and cause of my otherwhereness, is this coping void my brain goes into so that I can be on every day without major interruptions in my ability to single parent my child.

I was on some meds that worked for me, then I lost my insurance and had to rapid taper off of them, because the Lexapro was so damned expensive- and I swore I'd never go on another medication that could do that to me, again.  I wanted to die I was so miserable and sick through the withdrawal, and it seemed to trigger a subsequent health crisis that took almost a year to dig out of, all originating from that Lexapro withdrawal.

So while I want to unfuck my life and be whole- I don't want to disrupt my ability to function at the level where I'm at now.  I worry I have so much trauma and damage inside of me, that if I go back to therapy and really work on it, these walls are going to come down and I am going to feel- all of it, and I'm not going to be able to cope with it, and I'm not going to be able to shut down, and I'm going to have a psychiatric crisis that will threaten my ability to solo parent my child, or make it easier for his father's family to swoop in and take him from me, something I think they'd love to do if I show any ineptness at this job that I do 12/14 days, 24/7.

This post has been in that void but it just popped into my mind, when I thought I had nothing to write about tonight.  It's clearly a key thing I have to figure out. 


  1. Keeeeeeeep Writing........even though you have been through SO much, your sharp awareness now will begin to generate the healing. So honored to read these as you process inward and outward in a positive way <3

    1. Thank you- honestly, as this big stuff starts coming up, more and more, it's so nice to have this space to write it down. <3

  2. i feel my own flavor of this, for sure. <3 thank you for sharing this.