Speaking on PTSD

IMG_0133Having been diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Artie’s story now goes beyond just the events of 9/11.

His life is now a continuing lesson of learning how to live with the everlasting effects of that traumatic day.

Much like Humpty Dumpty, he is trying to piece together his life; which was shattered the moment he walked out onto the street in front of the World Trade Center on that day in September.

His life will never be as it was pre-9/11. The person he was on September 10, 2001 no longer exists and, even all these years since, he is still unsure of who he is becoming and what life means for him now.

Unfortunately, no one is immune from trauma, loss or tragedy and the resulting physical, emotional and psychological wounds are unique for each person. Suffering and grieving has no timetable. The healing, both inner and outer, takes as long as it takes.

Similarly to sharing his story of September 11, 2001, telling people of his life after that trauma helps; not only Artie, himself, but hopefully those who hear his words. Since Artie’s story of living with PTSD evolves daily, there is always something new to share with a listening audience.

There is no one solution. Artie readily admits he doesn’t have all the answers. But he can share what has worked for him. Sometimes it is just going from one day to the next. In sharing his story with other survivors of a tragedy or with someone who has experienced great personal loss Artie wants people to know they are not alone.

There is a quote from the author Anne Lamott, “You will lose someone you can’t live without,and your heart will be badly broken, and the bad news is that you never completely get over the loss of your beloved. But this is also the good news. They live forever in your broken heart that doesn’t seal back up. And you come through. It’s like having a broken leg that never heals perfectly—that still hurts when the weather gets cold, but you learn to dance with the limp.”

IMG_0978That “someone” you lose may be yourself. The you before tragedy struck. Your “heart will be badly broken” for the life you once knew it; that will be replaced with a future of uncertainty. And you may never “get over the loss you your beloved”; the “you” once untouched by adversity or traumatization. But there is hope in courageous perseverance.

Allow Artie to share with you how he is learning to dance with the limp.