Tuesday, July 14, 2009
It was too funny yesterday (or the day before?) writing about how things were so weird that they're "back to normal?" Well, I'm here to tell you they certainly are not. Now I'm wishing that I could take back all of what I said because my one true wish at this point is for things to be back to normal, the mundane, the boring. But, I'm afraid there's a long road ahead for me in order to definitely get back to that place. A long road for me and my poor husband.
I read another article on Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD is what everyone calls it) and I'm sure that my husband has it. He has so many of the symptoms of it, I can't see how I didn't see it before. The tragedy was a distraction, and a way for him to get back into military mode, or "red alert" mode as they call it, but I can see so clearly that he's got it. And why wouldn't he? The problem is that it's not recognized, so God knows how our insurance will cover it. I found this very helpful web site and if you have a loved one you think might have it, here are some of the symptoms:
Re-experiencing the traumatic event
- Intrusive, upsetting memories of the event
- Flashbacks (acting or feeling like the event is happening again)
- Nightmares (either of the event or of other frightening things)
- Feelings of intense distress when reminded of the trauma
- Intense physical reactions to reminders of the event (e.g. pounding heart, rapid breathing, nausea, muscle tension, sweating)
PTSD symptoms of avoidance and emotional numbing
- Avoiding activities, places, thoughts, or feelings that remind you of the trauma
- Inability to remember important aspects of the trauma
- Loss of interest in activities and life in general
- Feeling detached from others and emotionally numb
- Sense of a limited future (you don’t expect to live a normal life span, get married, have a career)
PTSD symptoms of increased arousal
- Difficulty falling or staying asleep
- Irritability or outbursts of anger
- Difficulty concentrating
- Hypervigilance (on constant “red alert”)
- Feeling jumpy and easily startled
Other common symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder
- Anger and irritability
- Guilt, shame, or self-blame
- Substance abuse
- Depression and hopelessness
- Suicidal thoughts and feelings
- Feeling alienated and alone
- Feelings of mistrust and betrayal
- Headaches, stomach problems, chest pain
Why am I so sure? Well, last night, I happened to get up in the middle of the night (we were drinking beer). Well, actually I was drinking beer, he was drinking nothing, one of the things I think this has affected is his appetite. ANYWAYS, there he is, crouching around in the backyard, following something. This is odd behavior, of course, so I watch, and my husband is quick, but he was like lighning, and he got this raccoon just straight out of the blue, catches it and EATS it. What is wrong with him? What is wrong with everyone? RAW. We've eaten weird stuff in lean times that he's caught, but raw? I just don't understand it. He needs to go to a doctor, he really does. And maybe so do I. But, we can't go on like this.
Monday, July 13, 2009
It's amazing to me how easy it is to forget things, how easy it is to "get back to normal," as it were. Just a little over a week after a murder in our town, things seem pretty "normal." I mean, they're not totally "normal," of course, in fact, I think it would be hard pressed to think that things would ever be normal again, but everyone's back to the blah day to day routine--even myself. Especially my kids, at that age, you know, all that matters is your toys and they were upset about the murders because they had to stay at home at night instead of run around the neighborhood. I should be glad I'm getting back to normal, but instead, I feel strange. Unsettled. Like we were supposed to be dealing with something and we didn't. Which is basically true. On the other hand, life goes on. She will be remembered.
The only thing I WISH was back to normal is my husband's sleep schedule!!!! I can't believe I'm STILL saying this. STILL. Up all night, sleep all day. It's like he's in tune with the sun---backwards. I am on the exact opposite schedule as him, it's too weird. I think it's becoming the time where I can say something to him. He's been home a long, long while now. And he needs to pick up and get a job. I've been holding my tongue on that one, but it's time for that too. Does he deserve some time off, yes. Does he need to take this much time off. No, no, no!
Will keep you posted.
Thursday, July 9, 2009
I guess we're all trying to get back to normal after the ordeal. We all believe now that it was not a serial killer, so that's good. I think he would have struck again by now if he was. Or maybe he was a serial killer and he's just moving on to a different town, to different people. As long as he's not bothering me, that's all I care about! It sounds selfish, I know, but what do you want? I'm a mother. I can't even think of something happening to the children, but even me, what would happen to them. I'm all they have if my husband gets another job overseas. Very sad, all of it. But, we're just trying to move forward and not forget. They'll be a tree planting ceremony this weekend and that'll be the final closure for everyone. I just hope we can get it.
I even went to work today, although I don't think a tooth cleaning was super high on everyone's list of priorities. Very empty, which was fine with me. I just needed to sit and think anyways (don't worry, I did LOOK busy to the passer by). Just about everything. Life is really fragile. I think I was shocked (heck, the whole town was) by the abruptness of the way that she died and the way that she died, but what we didn't realize was all the things we're supposed to, like we're mortal as well. How to live our lives. All of that came rushing through me and I have a couple of improvements I'd like to make.
1. More time with family! Always on my list.
2. Get hubby off of weird sleeping schedule. He needs to be productive again.
3. This blog! Try to be a "writer" that I'd like to.
4. Maybe go back to school? Hahahahaha that'll never happen.
5. Call people more.
That's all I got so far...and I'd better get started!
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
The service was indeed beautiful, a tribute to her soul which I know will reside in heaven. Everyone from the town came out and my hubby and others patrolled the perimeter of the place for anything unusual. I know it sounds a little vigilante, but we wouldn't want a terrorist blowing up the whole town in the blink of an eye. Not that I think it was terrorism, but I feel like there's nothing we shouldn't be ready for at this point. Nothing at all.
The most incredibly moving thing about the service (besides the prayers, of course) was at the very end, one of the dogs started howling. A very sad, mournful howl, just about how everyone felt. Then, on cue, all of the other dogs in the neighborhood joined in. I'll tell you, the only thing missing was if it had started raining. It was real beautiful and real perfect.
But, the saddest part was that there was no one from her family that came. I don't know if they knew, even (I surely didn't tell them), but we were the only ones, like a family. Which is fine with me, but I wish she had someone.
I am still not convinced that my hubby is off the post trauma thing. I just think that he maybe now has something to do with his time that makes sense. I read up on a link and there seems to be a lot of things similar, but who knows? I'm not a doctor. Still hasn't adjusted to our time.
Tuesday, July 7, 2009
With everything going on, this Michael Jackson funeral is not helping one bit! Oh my goodness. Everyone's displacing all of their feelings onto Michael or the funeral or onto each other. The whole town is a mess. No one goes out after dark except for a small posse of men patrolling 24 hours a day. It was actually my idea that they do that, do you know that most violent crimes happen before 9pm. It's true. Very strange, but true. It's not what you think, but what is these days?
I didn't go to work, in fact, I don't even know if work is open. No clue. I just called and left a message and that's it. Everything's shut down unless it needs to be open, like the grocery, etc, but not even Tammy's Clothes is open. I mean, who would buy clothes at a time like this? I suppose some people would.
Mickael's memorial was today, and hers will be tomorrow. I hope it is equally beautiful. The whole town plans to be there. No serial killer can kill a whole town!!!
Monday, July 6, 2009
I'm so sorry I haven't written, but what's been going on has been too terrible/shocking/unbelievable to even mention until I've had some time to process it.
I think the last time I posted, it was just before the big hoopla that we usually have in the neighborhood around the 4th of July. Everyone was real excited, bbq, etc. I was going to make a baked Alaska. Well, the night of the 3rd, one of our neighbors, god rest her soul, was found dead in the creek behind the town. I don't want to give her name yet, just because this seems to be a really cheap way to talk about it and I don't want her family to somehow find out on a blog, that would be too dreadful. The worst part was that a couple of kids found her. It was just awful. But the weird thing was that she was exsanguinated, not drowned, or so the official report said. In case you didn't know (and I had to look it up), that means that she was drained of all her blood! No one even knows how that possibly could have happened, and we're all in a stupor/shock/I don't even know about it. Luckily (and I say that with all due respect), she was single, no kids, so at least she didn't leave a family behind. I don't even know if that's better or worse.
The police are on the case, thank god, and a couple of guys are just going and checking out some strange people living on the outskirts. With that serial killer on the loose in South Carolina, you don't want to be too careful. Now's not the time to be too PC, let me tell you.
So, we're on red alert lockdown here at my house. My husband is being particularly vigilant, and I'm wondering if it's the concern about our family or that other little thing I mentioned not long ago. Who knows? All I do is that I'm scared out of my wits over here and I want some answers!!!!
Wednesday, July 1, 2009
I swear! I think if it's not one thing, it will be another. Thing to get ready for, that is. It seems as though all we do is get ready for this or that. Too funny!
Now, we're getting ready for 4th of July. And boy, is it a job. 4th of July on my block is no joke, in fact, it's an impromptu block party every year. Well, this year, we've decided to make it official and we're having a block party, block party now. Not closing off the street or getting a bouncy house or anything like that, but still. I'm in charge of the baked alaska. Boy, does everyone love a baked alaska. And I sure can make one. But, everyone's got their station, and grills will be going all night. I'm sure more than one grill war will break out. It's a lot of work, but a lot of fun, too, don't get me wrong. I'm not complaining!
We also have wars for the best fireworks. Everyone gets them illegal (I know it's a bad example for the kids, but sometimes, what the heck! It's not like we're buying them drugs) and boy do we have a show. We don't have a local show and no one wants to drive that night. Nevermind that we're drinking--everyone else is too!
I grumble, but I am very much looking forward to the party, especially for the kids.