Ebb And Flow

There is a sort of ebb and flow to PTSD and depression. John Arenburg.

It would be silly to think everyone understands the plight of the mentally ill mind. While I, like many of you, wish this were true, it’s not; in fact, some of those whom misunderstand mental health conditions are likely people you’re close to. It would be equally naive of me to think I am the only one who experiences this.

Part of the problem, at least in my experience, is the natural ebb and flow of, in my case, PTSD and its ride a long partner depression; might as well hit me from multiple angles, right?

What may be difficult for those who think we can simply get up and shake it off is, when we are in the throes of a depression, we isolate as a result, we can be missing from their lives for days.

you set the boundaries and go from their.

Of course, there’s also a little thing called stigma that is part of this equation too. One’s personal believe has a lot to do with their perception. Regardless of the motive; be aware, anyone can have this point of view, even those closes to you.

Ways to help people understand your mental illness.

While it can be difficult to embrace their inaccurate preconceptions of you, remember, their view is re-enforced by the observations they make when they see you; basically, when you are feeling well.

Ebb and Flow
Ebb and Flow

What’s important to realize that those who don’t understand, don’t have to have a say in your reality. Because one doesn’t think it so, doesn’t make it true, a fact we often forget.

Now does this mean you have to abandon a great friendship? Not from my point of view; we all have elements of being human that are not desirable., they are worthy of forgiveness. They can like it or they can hate it, you set the boundaries and go from there.

Like what you are reading? want more? check out: Depression’s Mindset.

Your priority is to understand that this ebb and flow is real and it does, in fact, take you out; we must get the help we need and when our mental health conditions can’t be helped; we need to ride the wave.

On a positive note, you are under no obligation to accept unfamiliar people into your life if you discover that they are not supportive or they are just downright mean.

if you can “get Over” your anxiety and depression, LUCKILY for you its not CHRONIC.

But John, how can you tell? Well, in my experience, when a person discovers you have a mental illness and has a view that somehow, willing it away is all one needs to do to get “over it” they will hesitate and verbally dance around the subject in an attempt to feel you out. The end goal? Is to figure out the best way to share their opinion; some voice it others don’t; whist others are trying to tell you you’re faking it.

check out The Depression Files Podcast

So please, don’t despair over the words of others. What you are going through is real, you can’t wish it away and you certainly can’t snap out of it. The ebb and flow of mental illness shows us just how real it is.

In crisis? Call 1.833.456.4566 | Text 45645 (Crisis Services Canada) Crisis Services Canada

Want to help make my book a reality? Donate here: GoFundMe

Contact us: The Road To Mental Wellness

How a supercar and mental illness are alike.

How Supercars and Mental Illness Are Alike

How supercars and mental illness are alike, the perfect analogy?

At first glance, you may not see how a supercar can be used as the perfect analogy for how mental illness impacts our daily lives.

Because I am a lover of all things cars, it’s easy for me to see just how well these high end, fine-tuned machines work when attempting to explain the mental pain.

Supercars, like that of the Bugatti Chiron, are built for one thing and one thing only, speed. With a top speed of approximately 300mph; 482kmph, it is the roadrunner on steroids. I know, mindblowing right? Perhaps just as amazing is; when pushed at top speed, this amazing piece of engineering will run out of fuel in approximately twelve minutes; basically, it’s all about fun over fuel efficiency.

I oftentimes hit the wall and spin out of control.

Now that you have some car knowledge, I can explain how supercars and mental illness are alike. From my own experience, I kind of feel like I’m always going three-hundred miles an hour, sound familiar? This is especially true inside my head. Maybe you can relate?

Furthermore, when my mind is racing from anxiety, it depletes my mental fuel in what feels like the same amount of time as the Chiron. In other words, I lack the longevity needed to go the distance.

How a supercar and mental illness are alike.
How supercars and mental illness are alike

And like that of these speed demons, I feel like I’m always in danger of hitting the wall and spinning into a mental health crisis. It must be said, that I am nothing like that of the driver because I can’t put the dangers out of my mind and just go for it! Therefore, my triggers win the day.

The Chiron and I are equipped with a small gas tank and no reserve.

Interestingly, when I think about it, my goal is to stop being the car and work on becoming the driver. Professional drivers train to focus and condition their reaction time in order to keep from hitting the wall; essentially, they must learn to always be in the present.

Are you now seeing how supercars and mental illness are alike? I think the takeaway from this analogy is this: Although mental illness, like that of a supercar, accelerates quickly (PTSD triggers) and exhausts all its fuel (mental energy); one can use the driver as their inspiration to beat their mental health condition.

Getting down the road to mental wellness requires dedication, discipline and being present; all the skills a great driver and a mental health warrior must-have in order to keep on track.

While this is true, the road is long and the journey is gruelling. Despite this, we can make our lives better. My friends, there is hope. Learning mindfulness, seeking help from a mental health professional and sometimes medication will put you in the driver’s seat; putting you in control of your destiny.

In crisis? Call 1.833.456.4566 | Text 45645 (Crisis Services Canada) Crisis Services Canada

Want to help make my book a reality? Donate here: GoFundMe

Contact us: The Road To Mental Wellness

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PTSD and its startle response


PTSD AND ITS STARTLED RESPONSE are the worst. – John Arenburg.

I am lucky; every morning when I open my eyes to greet a new day I do so with a blank slate. I could have had the worst mental illness flare up the day before and still feel grateful and renewed the next day. However, PTSD and its startle response can change all that.

The exception being when the PTSD nightmares come for me in my slumber. These nightmares startle me awake and as a result, I start my day with a rapid heartbeat and a fear that plagues me for a good part of the day.

With this blank slate, I do my best to map out a day of normalcy. it doesn’t necessarily have to be full of joy but I always try to head in the right direction; a direction that allows me to conduct the everyday tasks that come with living.

I fully embrace them and don’t give in to the temptation to run home.

Taking care of chores, paying bills and making appointments. High on my priority list is meeting up with friends. My end goal is not to let PTSD imprison me in my own home. It’s of vital importance as I fear of what potential emergency could be lurking around the corner.

Yes, it can be overwhelming but we have no excuse not to try.

Living your life with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

I resist fear with all my strength and step outside to greet the world. I do so with a sense of hope that today, I will be able to tolerate the very noisy and very busy world. As I said, I use social connections with friends as the primary reason I leave my home. Those whom I care about and who support me; I use it as my motivator to integrate into society.

I would be lying if I told you that I love being amongst the daily chaos. A chaos that is the everyday hustle and bustle of humanity. On the contrary, I despise it; but I do recognize that despite how I feel about it, I know I have to interact with society. so I, like I always do, defy it and I set off in hopes to win the day.

Learn more about how to recognize the symptoms of PTSD here: Symptoms of PTSD

Out of the many symptoms that are produced by PTSD, none are more impactful than the startle response. PTSD and its startle response are so problematic for me because when I am symptomatic, it increases my hypervigilance. As a result, I am in constant fight, flight or freeze mode. Being in this state makes me jump at every sudden noise, regardless of its volume. 

So, why is it such a challenge? Well, I find the tendency to be easily started so difficult because it is often the primary trigger that causes me to spiral into a mental health crisis.

I become so finely tuned to all the chatter surrounding me.

I become so finely tuned to all the chatter surrounding me, every little kid crying and each and every item be tossed about and dropped; even the clanging of a spoon against a plate can bring me out of my chair.

I feel like I am constantly vibrating, acutely aware of every last bit of commotion in the room. The price I pay for leaving the house is being scared out of my skin over and over again until I can’t take any more.

Sometimes I isolate myself for days because of PTSD AND ITS STARTLED RESPONSE.

It may help you to understand my plight if you stop and think back to a time where someone had scared the life out of you; think of the physiological response you had. Racing heart, a tinge of agitation and rapid breathing.

Go here for help with PTSD #firstrespondersfirst

Now, imagine what that would be like to experience that multiple times in a row. It puts me in a constant state that ranges from constantly irritable to level ten agitated. The best way I can put it is, it’s like getting a tiny shot of electricity over and over, after a while all you want is for it to stop assaulting your body.

Without a doubt, what I hate most is that those closest to me must endure the fallout. PTSD and its startle response effects everyone.

Check out A New Dawn Podcast here.

If that weren’t enough, its side effects lead to numbing recounts of things I’ve witnessed; it’s so numbing that I feel like I’m trying to make my way through molasses. These are the moments when I end up spending the day in bed. Sometimes I isolate myself for days.

PTSD and its startle response

Although these moments make it very tempting to just stay home, I remind myself that I have had great days interacting with the living, it has enriched my life; meeting up with an old friend or helping someone get through their own personal experiences with mental illness. Reminding myself of this, I know that tomorrow will be better.

One day I will beat PTSD and its startle response.

In crisis? Call 1.833.456.4566 | Text 45645 (Crisis Services Canada) Crisis Services Canada

Want to help make my book a reality? Donate here: GoFundMe

Contact us: The Road To Mental Wellness

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