I did another 5K this morning. My 3rd in the last 2 months. PTSD made it harder.
Every step felt harder
Because I didn’t want to go be around all the people
Because my body wasn’t prepared because the illness has beaten back my desire to workout these last few weeks
Because my mind wasn’t ready for the battle every step would represent
That is the thing about this illness. The simplest things are so much harder. PTSD makes it all harder.
Some things are harder because I’m tired
Some things are harder because my brain is really fuzzy, cloudy, and confused
Some things are harder because I’m scared a lot of the time
Some things are harder because my physical body begins to carry the illness in my joints, muscles, bones
Some things are hard because I’m holding too many emotions at the same time to make decisions and regularly feel overwhelmed
PTSD is made harder at times by those that do not understand the illness
Those who want me to get better faster than I can
Those who think I can “suck it up” or “pull it together”
Those who think this will all go away if I pray more
Those who pretend not to see the illness in hopes that it will be easier for me if they don’t talk about it
Those who focus on the illness and forget that I’m a person with good days and bad days
I know that sounds like the people in my life can’t win. That it’s a losing battle. Damned if you do. Damned if you don’t.
And not true.
True because you can’t know from one moment to the next what I need because I don’t know from one moment to the next what I need
Not true because I love you and feel so happy to extend grace for the awkward moments and patience for the misunderstandings
And then…then, there are moments when the sun comes out.
When a friend asks me how I am today
When someone in my life invites me to eat and doesn’t even know that I can’t eat unless I’m around people
When the other walkers in the 5K don’t even know I’m sick and chat me up on the road
When the counselor tells me how strong I am
When I find myself laughing…hard…with people I love
When anyone tells me my honesty is encouraging
When someone says “let’s go for a walk” or “I’m coming over to sit in the sun with you” or “what are you reading?” without any fear of running me off and without any repercussions if I don’t have an answer.
PTSD is hard
And I do hard things
Some days I do hard things
Other days I do harder things
One day I’ll just do regular things again
And in every day I’m strong, courageous, and brave enough to fight