Post-Traumatic Stress Tested In Real-Time

Post-Traumatic Stress Tested In Real-Time – Part of getting better is taking risk but man, there’s a price to pay.

In three days, it will be exactly one year since I was forced off work due to mental illness. If you take the time to read through my blog site, you will undoubtedly start to see how long and difficult The Road To Mental Wellness can be. I hope that you can also see that despite the long and arduous battle, it is, without question, worth the struggle to keep moving forward.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

You know, PTSD is a hell of a thing. The nightmares replaying the most horrific scenes in my head while I attempt to sleep can write off the rest of the night and even the days to follow. Fear of leaving my home, my mental-made prison, can really keep me in a perpetual loop of avoidance. I see potential emergencies lurking around every corner.

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So, after all this time making myself scarce, sometimes for a week or two at a time, I brave the world to see the people I am closest to. While at other times, I will sit and discuss mental illness with other suffers.

At the same time, I decided to volunteer my time to help a political candidate in their bid for office in the federal election.

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Because I need to start to gauge my tolerance in what is essentially a work environment, I felt honoured to be asked. I thought, “What a pressure-free way of testing the waters.” This prospect excited me because all I want is to move on with my life. Similarly, I want to get to a point where I can manage well enough to walk among the working world. “I miss going full-tilt all the time.” I say this to myself often.

Sadly, this social integration experiment is not going as well as I had hoped. Ever since I’ve started, my startle response is at a constant high and I’m overwhelmed by the exposure to others bustling about. Overly-loud vehicles rumbling by, just outside the office door, tear my already-dwindled concentration away from what I am doing. My most triggering thing of all? Sirens, lots of sirens. There is so much constant stimulation – it’s exhausting.

How to reduce stress in the workplace

At the end of most days, I am left in such a state of hypervigilance that I remain awake most of the night; this only makes everything I have mentioned above worse when the next day rolls around.
My saving grace? The fact that I am a volunteer, I can do as little or as much as I can tolerate, I take full advantage of that flexibility. But we all know that the working world demands one to be on all of the time; something that I simply cannot do. Testing out my PTSD symptoms in this voluntary environment has taught me that.

However, I will get there. I will persevere and I will win the day… You can too; just keep working towards a solution that works so you can be productive and feel like you’re winning your mental disorder war.

If you are struggling, please go here: Crisis Services Canada

Thank you for stopping by The Road To Mental Wellness. Remember, reach out if you need help.

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Jonathan Arenburg

Jonathan Reginald-Nixon Arenburg (Born January 14, 1976) is a Canadian mental health blogger, speaker, and published author. Retired from the fire service and long-term care fields, he has written and self-published an autobiographical account of his life-long battle with anxiety, depression and more recently, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Titled, The Road To Mental Wellness, he wrote it for what he calls “therapeutic release.” He published it in hopes it would help others going through similar mental health conditions. The sales of The Road To Mental Wellness have been steady selling over 300 copies since its release on October 10, 2021(World Mental Health Day). Arenburg has also been involved in a collaborative publication Called Lemonade Stand Volume III, a book featuring 20 authors who bravely tell their stories of PTSD. All authors where from the military and or emergency services. Published by Joshua Rivedal and Kathleen Myers for the i’Mpossible project, a mental health advocacy organization. Jonathan has also appeared on several mental health podcasts including The Depression Files, A New Dawn, and The Above Ground Podcast Arenburg has also consulted with the Government of Nova Scotia and the Minister of Mental Health and Addictions, the Honorable Brian Comer and Candidates for the New Democratic Party of Canada, on improving the mental health care system in Canada. Additionally, Jonathan was recognized in The Nova Scotia Legislature by the Honorable, Chris Palmer, Kings-North MLA, for his Book, The Road To Mental Wellness, his fight to make the mental health care system better. In addition, Chis acknowledged the support he gives to others.

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