A PTSD Poetry Project Poem created from a current journal entry
“No In Betweens”
Waking drenched in sweat again
Only memories of moments I thought were lost
They begin to move through my healing brain
Stirred and woken up
After lengthy time of twists
Turns, near misses
They rise up and distract me
I pull over in the car to see them
Like a movie in my mind
I cannot escape them
There is before
There is after
Stimulated by contacts from my past
My memory surfaces
Roaring with clarity
Is this who I was?
Is this who I had been?
Some things I wish I could forget
Others I wish I could remember
My future is in front of me
Waiting for me to merely
Take its hand in mine
I’ve driven alone for so long
I have forgotten the pleasure
Of simply holding another’s hand
There are some things
I wish I could remember
And never forget
“Memories Long Forgotten”
Twisting, turning in the sheets I wake soaked with sweat. Not from nightmares this time. My mind is distracted. Needs long ignored, then lost through brain injury have woken up. My brain’s healing has been a journey which twists and turns, had high climbing times, then crawling through the muck. Alone in this fight, it has been the hardest accomplishment I’ve ever experienced.
Memories of so many moments in life either escape me, seemingly for good, then rise up when least expected. I’ve been driving alone and had to pull over and just sit while memories flew through my mind. They were so real it was like being there again. Some memories I wish I could forget and yet can’t. Others’ I have and wish I could remember but I also realize I have to let go of these types of thoughts. Either I will or I won’t. There seems to be no in between for me.
The times I’ve had to pull over, stop and sit until my brain settles down are times I’ve learned a lot about who I used to be. Usually this happens after I have met someone from my past, ones who knew me ‘before’. See I think, or I believe, when brain injury happens there is this ‘before’ and there is ‘after’. All it took was one moment to change everything. Most have said I am a better person now, a good person. Not that I was a bad person before, I was merely very focused on my personal safety and kept everyone out.
Now I let people in, I take chances and choose to care about others. I choose each day to meet it with respect for others but most of all? I choose respect and love for myself. Something I never had before. It’s been a long two years of therapy to get to these months of slowly phasing out until the time of no therapy. Once I let go of my tightly held self and relaxed into my life it has begun to move quickly again.
There are times I want it to slow down, if only for a few moments. Maybe it is more I need a deep breath now and again then I can step back into the pace again. Lessons I’ve learned this past 13 years is all I have is this day, this moment. I can plan for my future, but plans can always be redone, changed to better fit the journey. I could look back at so many moments and think my life would be better with them. Maybe it would be, but it has all lead up to the person I am right now.