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Tue, Mar 5 3:59am · Anyone Else With PTSD? in Mental Health

Good morning, Merry. Please forgive me if your notifications sound wakes you at this hour of the morning…DING. I fell asleep early before this post was finished and woke up at 1 a.m. My insomnia is just crazy, so my day has begun! Here’s what I wrote to you yesterday:

Good evening, Merry. I want you to know that you’re very much appreciated and loved. Your heart for others shines through your thoughtful and sincere words of compassion and love for others who also suffer like you. Being a moderator for this group is an enormous responsibility and very time-consuming and I’d like to personally thank you for all you do. I think you’re awesome!

Because I spend at least three days a week with the homeless and sponsor a few women that I see one-on-one every week, my life is very busy. What they don’t realize is that when I get home, I have to lie down immediately to relieve the physical pain. Of course, my husband is a priority and spending quality time with him is extremely important to me. Above all, my love of God, who loved me first, is my life and the foundation for all I do. I wouldn’t have survived all I have if he hadn’t been with me through it all.

I’m quite involved in my home church and am there at least a couple of times a week. Spending time with them and surrounding myself with other loving people who many themselves are or have been broken is crucial to me. I found that it’s excellent to have others we are accountable to. Sometimes all someone needs is a hug. It’s family. Many of them, including the homeless, attend my church and accept me, with all my faults, just as I am more than my family of origin. We can choose our own family. It fills the need for my parents and some of my siblings rejection of me. My “chosen family” love me with all my weirdness.

I discovered a long time ago that the “hole” in me could not be filled with anything or anyone but God. I tried to fill it with everything the world offers until I realized it was only him. So I quit being a people pleaser. No person can fill all my needs… not even my dear husband or incredibly loving daughter. Some people love me and some people don’t but I don’t need their approval. There is only one whom I care about pleasing.

Thanks for confirming that PTSD can have such negative effects on our physical body. I’ve shared previously that by refusing to deal with the abuse for so many years, I developed over 30 diseases. I can be doing really well handling conflict and issues when all of a sudden something triggers pains from the past… Father’s Day, his birthday, my daughter’s wedding, the birth of my grand-daughter when my ex-husband threatened that my parents “better not show up at the hospital or I’ll be in your dad’s face,” a movie or show where the father and daughter dance together. Thank goodness, the triggers aren’t every day; but when they come up, I deal with my “Demons” again, but I never give up and it’s become easier each time. I won’t let the past and bad choices of others who hurt me destroy my life. That would only hurt me.

I learned that holding in bitterness is like drinking poison and hoping the other person dies. It would only kill me. So I forgive them and go on with my life.

May I ask something of you? Please save my post and when you have a bad day, read the second paragraph again. I mean what I said about you.

Once again, thank you for being there for us.


Mon, Mar 4 9:38pm · Anyone Else With PTSD? in Mental Health

Dear Peach, may I encourage you to not keep trying to turn off that passion I see in you that allows you the blessing of reaching out to find love and acceptance. There’s nothing wrong with it. In my personal opinion… and I hope I’m not overstepping a boundary, it’s not the bipolar, it’s the rejection and lack of love we felt as a child that causes us to be perhaps more needy than the average person. That, and mostly insecurity and low self-esteem that came with the territory. What’s “the average person” anyway? As far as I’ve witnessed in my life, most everyone is messed up from something. So we fit right in! LOL. ‘Embarrassment’ is a feeling, and I never tell anyone their feeling is right or wrong… it’s just your feeling. But I do wish you weren’t embarrassed about reaching out. We all need to feel loved and cared about and to feel accepted. It’s the way God wired us.

Just because we were damaged, doesn’t mean we’re “damaged goods.” There’s really nothing wrong with us. It would be more strange if we went through the trauma and were NOT depressed or hurt.

Thank goodness, the chemical depression is not giving me problems as long as I stay on the right antidepressant. The anxiety isn’t as bad as it was. I’ve learned to “let go and let God,” so I don’t worry about things for the most part.

One of the women I sponsor went from the Salvation Army by ambulance to ER last week due to severe pain from her recent spinal surgery. She was discharged but then went off the radar for three days. I care about her so of course I worried. My first instinct after two days of phone calls was to start searching for her. I got in my car with an enlarged photo of her and planned to go downtown to search for her, but I prayed more about it and decided to give it to God instead.

The next day I got a phone call from her and she was safe. The hospital had realized she was so depressed over the death of her husband whom she had nursed for three years with bone cancer before he died that they had transferred her to another hospital for a few more days of rest. So I’m glad I didn’t follow my impulse. I spent the day with her today and avoided a panic attack.

It’s taken a long time, but I’m learning to control my OCD. I don’t do it perfectly or all the time, but it helps me avoid a lot of burn out and stress.

Keep reaching out and know that you are loved by God and by us. You have friends here… people like Merry @merpreb and others who care about you. As Merry shared above, volunteering and giving my time to help others less fortunate helps me, as well. We do it first for them, but it helps us. When we help someone else, our body releases endorphins that actually allow us to feel joy. I do a lot of mentoring from my home. I can be laying down on a heating pad and make a phone call to someone who needs encouragement. You do it just by connecting with us.

God bless you, my friend. Love, Peggy 💕

Mon, Mar 4 7:06am · Anyone Else With PTSD? in Mental Health

Hello, Peach. You’re so sweet. Thank you for your encouragement. I won’t ever be 100% over it. Life isn’t easy. No child, or even an adult, can be abused and completely whole… maybe 99% until we’re with our Lord where there’s no more suffering. But at least I’m 90% better emotionally than I used to be. It’s been a long journ’ey to healing from my past. Sometimes it feels like my life has lasted too long. But I find joy every day. That’s not just a cliche, I really do. My physical pain isn’t so much fun, but as long as I wake up with breath in my lungs, I’ll stay on this journey and reach out to others with all that’s within me. God bless you, sweet lady. Love, Peggy 🙏💖

Sun, Mar 3 2:02pm · Anyone Else With PTSD? in Mental Health

I agree with everything you said. 11 years of sexual, emotional and verbal abuse almost destroyed me. Alcohol, drugs, eating disorders, and after I surrendered all of that and changed, I still wouldn’t face my “Demons.” It made me very sick from the time I was 18 on. It wasn’t until I landed in the hospital with the eating disorder that I was told I needed to deal with my past pain… and my father. It terrified me. But with God, I did it. And as you said, it was a very very long process and very very painful. But it was so worth it. The PTSD and all of it conditions were bad enough but I developed dozens of other diseases as well. Because I took so many years to deal with it, I believe that my chemistry changed and set me up for disease… Mostly neurological. Facing our demons is challenging but the only way to full recovery. Isolation was my worst enemy. Today, I reach out to help people in need almost every day. It brings me out of myself and helps me not focus the chronic physical pain. Thank you so much for sharing. 💖💐

Fri, Mar 1 11:08pm · Chronic Pain members - Welcome, please introduce yourself in Chronic Pain

Thanks, Ronnie. I’m in Sarasota, south of Tampa. LOL, I guess just about everyone knows where Sarasota is. You are too kind. I get such satisfaction from helping people who are less fortunate than I. Even though one of the women showed up extremely intoxicated today and wanted to fight me. LOL. The director made sure she was near me and kept the lady in line until she left on foot. When this lady is not intoxicated, she is the sweetest thing. It’s terrible what alcohol can do to a person.

I’m sorry about your brother-in-law passing. And also for your chronic pain and multiple spinal surgeries. You’re an inspiration! Living with chronic pain, as we all know, is extremely challenging every day of our lives. Got bless you and everyone who is suffering, my friend.

The reasons that you stated regarding why you would not use pain medications are the same reasons that I quit using them. They made me completely dysfunctional and eventually did not alleviate my pain. I would rather be alert and able to drive and spend my time in ministry than to be somewhat out of pain and in a stupor and a wheelchair at home like I was two years ago. The pain does make it more difficult, but as you know, life must go on. Either that, or we can choose to give up. I chose to live in pain. I did for decades until I tried the pump, so I. can again. It’s good and quite necessary for many. I have people in my life with everything from lupus to cancer to advanced stages of AIDS. Without pain medication and medical marijuana they would have no quality-of-life whatsoever. So for them, it is a necessary evil.

The first spinal surgery in 1997 did alleviate my pain. It was cervical and I had an excellent surgeon. My recovery was quicker than prognosed even though the fibromyalgia did cause me to take longer to heal than the average person of my age.

The second more recent surgery, about eight or 10 years ago, was lumbar. I think it was the same disks that you mentioned. Did you also have a lot of instrumentation inserted? I had a few cages with nuts and bolts, but unfortunately, it did not eleminate the pain or the forward bend. I can move pretty quickly with my walker. But take it away… And my spine just wants to collapse. The pain is always there. Due to my stomach problems, I can occasionally tolerate a few ibuprofen. It gives me slight relief for a short time… not really enough to mention.

When I was at the Mayo Clinic Clinic, Jax, in 2016-17, I had two neurologists and a spinal surgeon examine me and run tests. I have a large deformation on the thoracic spine that is visible through some shirts, so I’m careful about what I wear. They told me that if I had it removed, it would just grow back. Fortunately, that particular protrusion is not painful.

The same physicians also diagnosed a pinched L/5. I was able to tolerate it until I began having sciatica on one side. Within a few months, I developed it on both sides. It doesn’t usually bother me when I am upright, but lying down is so painful it is difficult to fall asleep. I slept for one and a half hour last night and then I just had to get up.

My insomnia is so crazy, but that has become normal for me. Somehow, God has enabled me to function not only in spite of pain, but in spite of no sleep as well. LOL. I have to laugh about it because it is so rediculous! That is why I often don’t tell people about my health issues for fear that they will think I am exaggerating to gain attention. In fact, my step-daughter is one of those people. She was so unkind to me that we haven’t spoken in nearly two years. I tried to reconcile with her, but she lives in a fantasy world. So I’ve forgiven her and let it go. As I like to say, let GO… D.

I know a lot of us feel that way because unless someone has suffered, I find that they are often quick to judge and can be superficial. They live in a La La Land of their own making. That is exactly why I stress to people not to judge those less fortunate because we know how it feels when people act as if we are exaggerating our symptoms. That’s why this site is wonderful that we who are suffering with physical or emotional pain can relate to one another and encourage each other. It hurts when people act as if we are exaggerating how are symptoms or health problems.

If it looks like I’m going to require a third surgery like you are facing, I will be in touch to find out about your doctor. The hard part is that my spouse cannot stay with me while I am going through testing or surgery. It was hard enough when I was in Tampa for the last surgery and he had to drive so many miles. I am concerned about his driving and safety.

Thank you again for your support. You would be an asset to any ministry! Enjoy your pain-free days. God bless you, and please stay in contact. I’d like to know how things go for you.

I pray you and all our friends sleep peacefully tonight.
Peggy 💖

Fri, Mar 1 7:12am · Chronic Pain members - Welcome, please introduce yourself in Chronic Pain

Good morning, Ronnie. I’m so sorry about your loss. Truly. I know my husband, Barry, may die the next time he gets cancer. If not, he may have another hemorrhagic stroke and the neurologist said he’ll never survive another one like that. It was a miracle he survived the first one. He has a hole in the frontal lobe so his ability to handle his mood and anxiety are nil. I never know when I walk into the room what mood he will be in, I know God is using it to teach me more patience. I take care of him but he takes care of me as well. So I know you must miss your husband very much. It is hard to nurse someone with cancer.

Because God healed me from my abusive childhood, I have a passion to help other abused women. I also work with the homeless and most all of them have been abused, men and women. I am sponsoring a few women right now to guide them in the right direction to recovery. One of them nursed her husband with bone cancer for three years until he died. It put her over the edge and they found her on the sidewalk unable to tell the Deputy anything except, “my husband died.“ It is very sad.

Please forgive me because my memory is so bad… LOL… But did you write about having chronic pain? I can’t see the post. I’ve been in chronic pain from various sources for 49 years. I can’t say that you ever get used to it. I gave up on pain medicine a couple of years ago and told them to get me off of it. Because I was on the pump 10 years, I t took 11 months to wean me, but I’m glad that I did. Everything worked for a year or so, but eventually I needed more and then a different opiate.

I started out on morphine after few years it didn’t work anymore so they put me on snail venom. That worked until I started having audio hallucinations. I’m not kidding! I heard music all the time. I couldn’t make out any words but I could hear the instruments and voices in the background. No, I was not schizophrenic! LOL. It got so bad and so loud that one day I called my sweet neighbor and asked her if her teenagers were blasting a stereo. She said she was taking a nap and the kids weren’t home! Boy did I feel like an idiot. When I first told my doctor she said she had never read that but when she looked at blogs, lots of people complained about it.

So finally it was Dilaudid. When I had my last spinal surgery for degenerative disc disease, the lunatic surgeon cut the lead to my spine and I overdosed. He said it was an accident!!! My local pain management doctor and neurologist said that no surgeon accidentally cut the lead to the intrathecal pain pump. It was in his way and he was lazy. When I return from my follow-up visit I said to him, “Dr., you put me through hell.“ It didn’t go over too well. LOL. Like I would ever go back to him. For 12 days I hallucinated, Head sweats, nausea and vomiting constantly. I couldn’t even keep down water. When they finally discharge me, I was sent to a nursing home for rehab for two months. It was awful. So unless I have a broken bone or surgery, I won’t take narcotics ever again. I have had to since then and I only take them for a few days. I saw it destroyed my father. He was already an angry man, but it turned him into a raging maniac. Constant doses of hydrocodone day after day, year after year, decade after decade. If he tries to skip a few days, he has rebound migraines that make him feel like he’s going to die or wants to.

I never impose what I need to do for myself on others. Some people it works for and I’m happy for them. Have a nice day my friend and God bless you. I’m in Florida also.


Thu, Feb 28 9:34pm · Large amounts of mucus in throat in Digestive Health

Mitch, could the “mucus” be excessive acidic saliva coming from undigedted food in your stomach? I’ve had GERD 30 years and every other stomach disorder, including gastroparesis. 1/12/18 stomach wrap (fundoplication) surgery. Didn’t stop excessive “foam/saliva” in my mouth 24/7 for over 2 years now. Between that, bladder and bowel incontinence, my neurologist diagnosed me with autonomic neuropathy which causes nerve damage to our organs. Hope we both find a remedy! God bless you.

Thu, Feb 28 9:23pm · Chronic Pain members - Welcome, please introduce yourself in Chronic Pain

From Grandma @peggyella to @grandmar
My husband has had cancer 5 times… 2 of them, melanoma. You wouldn’t believe the size of his scars! The first time, tubular melanoma, very aggressive. In 12/2018, they found a spot on his back the size of a dime. It took 60 stitches to remove it bc it was deep and wide UNDER the skin. It’s always better large and a lot, than too little too late.