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See, Feel, Doubt. Tuesday October 25, 2016

I want to sleep but I haven't stopped doing and I can't settle. It's been the same every night this week. And it's crazy, I know that when my sleep starts going off track it drags the rest of my life in its wake. Yet here I am propping my eyes open, because I'm scared.

I'm scared because the images are back, the movies looped on repeat. I've called them flashbacks, but is that the right word? Do these scenes which play out again and again in waking nightmare truly refer to my past, or do they convince me simply because they're familiar? Does my mind latch onto make-believe as a way to understand a set of difficulties that I happen to share with people who've experienced trauma? Did I make up stories years ago then retell them to myself so many times that remembering them feels like memories? If so, why? Why would I do that, really?

Amid these shifting sands I need to find solid ground. I sift out slices of the movies that seem definitely to belong to me. Some snapshots fit with other memories which seem easier to own. As the films run and rerun and I question myself and my motives, I gather these snapshots and begin a small scrapbook in my mind. As I tentatively paste them in, I begin to form a montage.

Occasionally I drop a seemingly innocent question into family conversations. I check for the validity of a safe memory that resonates with one of these mental snapshots. Shared memories seem more trustworthy. Yet still I question myself. Don't all myths have a foundation in truth?

I don't know which side I'm on: to establish that these things really happened, or that they didn't?

I guess I just want to stop seeing, physically re-experiencing, these films of my potential past. They're replaying just out of sight, until I try to sleep and they pull me in.

Because wherever the truth lies, these rememberings are insistent. They clamour for attention, acknowledgment, validation, if only from myself.

A Moodscope member.

Thoughts on the above? Please feel free to post a comment below.

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DAVE Tue, Oct 25th 2016 @ 7:32am

Hi Becky,
If I have understood....You're worrying unnecessarily it's quite normal what you're experiencing, this is only an opinion, my opinion.

Your lack of sleep maybe for the following, or that you breed to get ORDER and balance, and an honest way, routine into you life.

Your blog explains what I believe to be an elaborated more inclusive addition to original events in your youth maybe, which actually happened, but perhaps because others around you had better or more interesting stories sf actual events in their lives, yours seemed so dull....To You...yours were ordinary, and at the time you may have been going through puberty, and striving to get to grips with adulthood.....Feeling others were more interesting you felt sub-consciously inadequate, maybe boring, or that others found your stories of real events in your life not so interesting....This, at that vulnerable stage in your growing affected your emotional stability.

This feeling of emotional inadequacy has 'Followed' you every time you go 'down' in self confidence, and is always...there in the background, like a shadow following you around.

So how do we regain a confidence that we've never understood or addressed before.

I believe, that sitting down recalling the ORIGINAL events, and writing them down as your memory dictates, helps to bring to the 'Surface', confront them, don't allow them to 'fester within the sub-conscious, deal with reality as it is, not as you would like it to be.

This is where honesty plays a vital part of our lives, if we bend the truth, or tell lies, we need to have a 'bloody good' memory. Excuse language.

Once you can recollect the original facts as they actually happen, and revise them for several weeks,
you'll probably find that they may surface in your mind, in a way that allows you to feel comforted and not anxious about the effect they had upon you for so many years.

When I was young I elaborated such a lot in every day events, that they seem to ME on recalling them to friends a little bit eccentric, a fraction over-the-top.

I know that these events had been 'Dictored' but for years I played along with them, because they sounded so logical to others, who made comments, such as brilliant, their faces BOOSTED my inner confidence...'MY EGO...Dave's one of the lads'.

But I am ashamed to admit that whilst most were very accurate', of actual events, there are sime with 'added spice', which at the time served me well and I was ACCEPTED'.

As a father of three children, 47 years, 40 years, abs 37 years, I see in they a slight elaboration in their own stories of their youth too...So you and I are not alone, and BOTH NORMAL in those early intentions, not yo deceive but to strive to FIND the necessary confidence which is attracted to all the youth in reaching adulthood soonest ! !

Keep focused.
Love you

Hopeful One Tue, Oct 25th 2016 @ 9:02am

Hi Becky- an interesting blog which left me a little perplexed as I could not really identify the issues(s?)you raise . Rather than put my foot in it I will wait follow the thread of other fellow Moodscopers !

I read a very interesting article in esterday's Daily Mail by Jenny Murray on Laughter Yoga( no I am not 'disgusted of Turnbride Wells' it happens to be one of the cheaper papers) where a professor claimed that the endorphins realised by Laughter ( real or fake) is 30x more powerful than opiates. Me thinks a squirt of endorphins would do no harm.

Mr. Marcus was briefing his client, who was about to testify in his own defense. "You must swear to tell the complete truth. Do you understand?" The client replied that he did. Then the lawyer asked, "Do you know what will happen if you don't tell the truth?" The client looked back and said, "I imagine that our side will win.

the room above the garage Tue, Oct 25th 2016 @ 10:53am

Hello :-) I wait patiently for the day when you have your own column on here! You keep me going :-) xx.

the room above the garage Tue, Oct 25th 2016 @ 10:53am

Hello :-) I wait patiently for the day when you have your own column on here! You keep me going :-) xx.

Red Squaw Tue, Oct 25th 2016 @ 10:25am

Dear Becky,

It sounds as though you may be experiencing PTSD. When we find ourselves in a place where we feel we are 'safe' or 'safer' our mind can start to feel it's possible to unwrap those pieces of stuff in the attic of our minds. Stuff which weirdly we knew was there sort of but didn't at the same time. I call it a pile of unexamined rags or rubbish. It sounds like you could do with talking to a professional counsellor about this to help you process it. There is quite a good charity called PODS (bear with me while I look up what it stands for .... Positive Outcomes for Dissociative Survivors). This is where one has experienced a trauma but it sort of separates itself from us, so we're not quite sure what happened. Their website is They have a telephone no 01480 878409 manned in office hours. I hope this is helpful. In the meantime, stay safe ... you could try writing your dreams down. This might help you. Love and hugs ....Red Squaw

Red Squaw Tue, Oct 25th 2016 @ 10:33am

Bit of further information: PODS is run by START (Survivors Trauma and Abuse Recovery Trust) ... Hope this helps ... Red Squaw xx

Sophie Tue, Oct 25th 2016 @ 10:42am

Hi Becky, I used to suffer with flashbacks and my thoughts/memories would jump and dash from one to the next before I even knew what was happening, and they would drag me into a web of feelings and images that I was never prepared to deal with.

I took myself along to hypnotherapy sessions a couple of years ago. I knew it wasn't counselling that I needed this time, this 'stuff' was too deep for me to reach just by words alone. I wasn't depressed, but I was incredibly stressed and unhappy. SO off I went, to my 'magic' lesson (as I called it on my calendar, so as not to let anyone else know). Anyway, I didn't know quite what to expect, but in the first session the lady explained what would happen, and she actually said one line that probably shifted my subconscious more than any of the subsequent sessions. She said something along the lines of 'I'll be very clear that I cannot make any of your past disappear. It will always be there and will always resurface either when you do or don't want it to. What I aim to do is help you to respond to those thoughts in a healthy way'. That first part 'I cannot make your past disappear' - I realised when she said those words that that was what I had been hoping for, someone or something to make it all go away.

That moment of realisation that my memory cannot be wiped clean, it actually made everything much more achievable for me in terms of coming to accept what Ive been through and moving to look to the future instead of the past. Yes the thoughts and memories still pop up, but its almost as if they are somebody else's, they don't have that emotional hold over me that they used to have. They don't cripple me and turn me into a dithering mess. I have somehow become detached from them but in a healthy way, i think.

I'll be willing you to push forward and find the strength to one day look to finding a new way to deal with your past so that it doesn't taint your present. Thank you for sharing your anguish, Hope you have a positive day, or even just a day :)

The Gardener Tue, Oct 25th 2016 @ 10:47am

Becky I THINK I understand you problems - have you had any help or explanations? For quite a few years (I don't think it was during the manic depression phase) i would see the most awful images - seemingly on the inside of my eyelids, as though I was watching a horror film. They were usually blue, hobgoblins, blobs, William Blake type drawings. In those days Mr G could comfort me and they would go away. A more troublesome 'syndrome' was wild thought patterns - chasing each other - many on actual problems or recent events - they were so scary and fast I thought my brain would explode, or that I was going completely mad. The cure, was, in fact, simple. Wake myself thouroughly (get out of bed and get cold worked) then get a crossword or SUDOKO - even go and play solitaire - till my brain was safely deviated on to consecutive and concentrated thought. I have never suffered trauma or abuse - so there seemed no deep-seated reason. I am in full creative mode at the moment - ideas flying around - not madly like above - but making me cross and frustrated because I'm having rough nights and don't have the energy to carry the ideas out - also, nothing changes with me, I want them all done at once!

the room above the garage Tue, Oct 25th 2016 @ 10:51am

Hello Becky, I see you've already had some wonderful replies. My first thought was that if you haven't already started a daily meditation then it may just bring some organisation to your thoughts. I'm still new to it, one year in, but I have found my mind feels as though someone has nipped in, swept, filed and tidied. My thoughts are still there but they now know where to stand. Don't try it on your own, it's too easy to become distracted and stop. Try 'Take Ten' in Headspace. Stay close. Love ratg x.

Melanie Tue, Oct 25th 2016 @ 1:21pm

Dear Becky, thank you for your blog. You have a lot to read above. I have a small suggestion for something that has helped me very recently when I feel jittery or tearful - Teal Swan's 2016 book "The Completion Process". Lots of love and support to you, Melanie

Becky Fri, Oct 28th 2016 @ 1:28pm

Thank you all for your comments. Especially Red Squaw and Melanie, I will follow up your suggestions. The memories in question are from most of my life ago so I'm thinking - when in believing them mode - that may add to the confusion. I used to be able to shove them back under the radar but this year they've become less shoveable! I'm waiting for therapy but am ambivalent. But I will keep writing.

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