I recently made a post on my social media about my struggle with PTS (Post Traumatic Stress). In the post I was essentially describing my “bad” days. The days that the weight of the world feels like it’s on my shoulders and I either want to just crawl into a bed and never to reappear till the next season or that I feel like a walking nuclear bomb.
But in the last year I’ve been able to somewhat control my triggers by “cutting them off at the pass” or avoiding things or people that I know will make it worse. Sometimes I can feel the stress building like in a tea pot. For me that’s a huge improvement. I use to not be able to feel that till it was too late. So I honestly feel progress is being made.
A friend of mine Michelle Keller-Adrianse recently made a comment on my social media. She also struggles with PTS and shared how she approaches life. She wrote “one day, one step, one breath and one prayer at a time” Her comment was simple, but it has stuck with me ever since. Could this be a great tool to help me stay focused on the progress? Or help me focus on the “here and now”? It definitely got me thinking.
I’m always trying to figure out ways of becoming a better husband and father, but sometimes it feels like I’ve run out of ideas. You see when I first began experiencing the symptoms of PTS I had no earthly idea what I was dealing with. I just thought I was either pissed, no longer in love, hating my life, feeling down and very agitated. I didn’t realize the monster that was about to reek havoc on not only my life, but my wife and children’s too. I was about to do damage that would take years to undo.
So when my friend commented with the quote the other day it got m thinking again. It was a fresh look at an old problem. Sort of like looking at the same problem, but from a different angle. This has allowed me to try a new approach to my “bad days”. Now to be honest I’ve used this approach before or at least one similar to it. But this time it’s just slightly different.
The “one breath” element wasn’t something new. We’ve all heard the saying “step back and take a deep breath” right? But for what ever reason I had forgotten about this simple “tried and true” method of gathering yourself and calming down. Now to be honest I can’t tell you that this will be my “silver bullet”. I haven’t had a “bad day” since I wrote that social media post, but I can tell you it certainly gives me hope. And HOPE and FAITH is what keeps me going. HOPE for days I no longer have to struggle with the signs and symptoms of PTS. And FAITH in God that He is gonna take care of me until I be symptom free. That He will not leave me or forsaken me.
I wanted to share this with you. I honestly feel like this could help others as it’s helped me.
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
Jeremiah 29:11 NIV