Physical Pain, Stress And Trauma

Good morning, Dear Readers!

I was just talking with a friend of mine about the physical pain she suffered with for years. Finally, she found someone who not only believed she was in pain, but also found the solution for her!

This got me to thinking about myself. When I was 19, my mother threw me into a wall. As soon as I hit that wall, I felt & heard what felt like every single vertebrae in my spine pop loudly. The pain & fear of that moment made me black out briefly, it was that intense. It was so bad in fact, I had to quit working a few months later at age 20 because of the pain. I had pain constantly for the next 10 years until one day when I was watching Joyce Meyer on television. After she was done preaching, she prayed specifically for people with back pain. My husband prayed too, although I didn’t know it at the time. Within a few days, my pain was gone!

The early days of that injury were awful. I spent so much time visiting doctors. No one believed I was in pain. No injuries showed up on the xrays. They said my MRI was fine, but it “disappeared” never to be found again, so no one but the one doctor, an especially cruel & sarcastic man, saw the results. One doctor even wrote in his report I was “fine & able to work” in spite of me repeatedly telling him otherwise. I had one doctor, a very sweet, gentle chiropractor, who believed everything I told her. To top it off, my mother, the reason for my pain, told people I was faking it so I wouldn’t have to work. She often poked or slapped me right where my pain was, or handed me something heavy- anything to make me hurt.

It was a painful time in many ways. Aside from the physical pain, it hurt having doctors act like I was crazy, making this whole thing up or being lazy, like my mother said. After about a year or so, I gave up seeing doctors. It was absolutely frustrating & a waste of time. I also doubted the pain I felt. With so few people believing me, & reminding me often of that fact, I really wondered sometimes if I was making it up. Even when I would be in pain, I wondered about it sometimes.

Then in 2010, July 25 was a rough day. While at a now former friend’s wedding reception, a storm moved into the area. As soon as the storm was over, we quickly came home & learned our home had been struck by lightening. The insulation around the one window air conditioner had caught fire, but quickly extinguished itself. Coming so close to losing our home & the furkids terrified me! My husband told my father about it, & the next time we spoke, Dad told me he told my mother what happened. He said “we could’ve lost our daughter” & my mother’s response was “you’re making a big deal out of nothing.” Her lack of caring, although not surprising, was extremely painful for me. I also learned my ex husband’s mother died that day. I’d loved her, so even though I hadn’t seen her in 16 years, it still upset me. Shortly after, one of our cats passed away very suddenly. A couple of weeks later, as I was leaving a store, my shoe caught on the curb, throwing me into traffic where I was almost hit by a truck. Shortly after that, I ended a 22 year long friendship. Somewhere during this very traumatic time, my back went out one day. I woke up in pain, & it got worse until I could barely move. I was afraid I was back to living with the constant pain I had in my 20’s. Thankfully, a friend of mine who does massage helped me quite a bit, & the pain was gone within a few days.

This friend suggested that rather than have a nervous breakdown as I’ve had before, I had a physical one this time. After all, I’d been through a lot recently. I researched stress & back pain. That search led me to PTSD, & how I think it was 55% of people with PTSD suffer lower back pain with no physical cause. That blew me away! It also led to me researching PTSD further, which later led to me researching C-PTSD.

PTSD & C-PTSD can lead to a lot of physical pain with no physical cause. Muscle aches & pains from the stress of being constantly “on guard” are very common, as are headaches, migraines, neck pain, digestive issues & inflammatory disorders (arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, etc). Personally, I have had arthritis since I was 31, but also get aches & pains all over when the C-PTSD flares up. When I am really stressed, my lower back aches terribly.

If you are suffering with some type of physical pain that your doctors say is “all in your head” or don’t believe is as bad as you say, it may be time to ask for a referral to a mental health professional. You too may be dealing with PTSD or C-PTSD. Or, you may be dealing with too much stress & need to learn healthy ways to cope. In any case, please learn from my experience- no telling how much pain I could have saved myself if I had seen a psychiatrist when I was 19.

Leave a comment

Filed under Mental Health, Abuse and the Healing Journey, Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder

“But That’s Your Mother!” And More So-Called Wisdom

Hello, Dear Readers!

I just thought I’d share part of a conversation I had with a very good friend yesterday…

I told her about some of the things I’ve heard from those with good relationships with their moms. I’m sure you other daughters of narcissistic mothers know these lines too…

But that’s your MOTHER!”
“She won’t be around forever!”
“You need to find a way to get along with your mother!”
“She is the only mother you’ll ever have!”

“She can’t be that bad!”

Oh yea. Fun times.. NOT.

I believe most people who say these things really just can’t believe the outrageous stories of a narcissistic mother. They can be hard to believe, after all. Or, they’re trying to help, albeit in an ignorant way. But whatever their intentions, hearing things like these can be so hurtful & frustrating!

Anyway, I told my friend (whose mom was a wonderful lady yet she understands my complaints about my mom) that I would so love to just turn the conversation around sometime.. when I hear lines like that, I want to say something like, “You’re making that up. My mother hates me, so there is no way your mother actually loves you! She can’t be nearly as good as you say she is! You’re in denial!” Basically, do the same thing to them that they do to me- assume that all mothers are mean because mine is, & see how they like the generalization & being told what to do..

Has anyone ever tried this?? How did it work out? How do you handle snarky comments regarding your relationship with your narcissistic mother?

Just wondering.. :)

Leave a comment

Filed under Abuse and the Healing Journey, Mental Health, Narcissism

Writing And Book Stuff

I read a wonderful article on writing this morning. It consists of advice from the Master of Horror himself, Stephen King!!

http://www.businessinsider.com/stephen-king-on-how-to-write-2014-7? utm_content=buffer61d3f&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook.com&utm_campaign=buffer

Whether you like his writing or not, if you wish to be an author of any genre, I strongly advise reading this article. The advice just makes sense! These tips are from his book, “On Writing- A Memoir Of The Craft,” which I also highly recommend. I love that book-it’s written very to the point, & it’s easy to understand, too. It’s also entertaining to read- it feels as if Mr. King is talking to you over a cup of coffee- & is chock full of wonderful advice.

And speaking of writing….

My current book about maternal narcissism is getting very close to completion. I hope you readers won’t be disappointed. It’s a bit shorter than I’d anticipated, but I believe it is full of tons of good information for daughters and sons of a narcissistic mother. I also believe the information is good for adult children of a narcissistic father as well.

Leave a comment

Filed under Abuse and the Healing Journey, Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Mental Health, Narcissism, Writing

Progress On My Newest Book!

Good afternoon, Dear Readers! I thought you might like to see this…

With some very valuable input from the hubby, I created the cover for my new book. I’m not entirely sure this is going to be the title, but probably about 85% sure of it. (I’m toying with changing it from “The Facts About Maternal Narcissism” to “Parental Narcissism. Not sure though!) The wording will be the only thing that changes if I decide to change the title. I like the simplicity yet boldness of the cover.

Here is the front cover…

image

And, here is the back cover…

image

Now that the cover is complete, I’ll be getting back to work on completing the book! It’s getting close!

Leave a comment

Filed under Abuse and the Healing Journey, Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Mental Health, Narcissism, Writing

Yesterday..

Good morning, Dear Readers!

I just thought I’d share something…

As I’ve mentioned lately, I’ve been feeling really bad. It just seemed as if nothing was going right, & it’s been taking a toll on me. Thankfully, things changed yesterday…

To start with, the previous day, my mother called, wanting a favor from me. I told her I’d call back to let her know if I could do it. After some prayer & thought, I realized I couldn’t do it. Even at 43 years old, it takes a lot of courage to say NO to my mother sometimes.. especially without offering her any explanation (I didn’t want to hear any criticisms of my reasons for not being there for her). I called my parents yesterday morning, & thankfully was able to talk to my father instead- he accepted my no without question. No problems. Saying no helped me feel stronger than I had- it reminded me I had a right to say no, to have boundaries & to have my life as a priority.

Although leaving home made me extremely anxious as it always does, I still enjoyed my time out with my husband last night. I bought a couple of little things at a store without telling myself I don’t deserve them or we shouldn’t spend money on me. We then went to a car show, & on the way home stopped by a local car dealer where we’d seen a 1969 Dodge Charger. It was a replica of the General Lee from the old tv show, “The Dukes Of Hazzard,” one of my favorite tv shows as a kid & my favorite car ever. I wanted to snap a quick picture of it before we went home. We pulled into the lot just as someone was moving it, & as I snapped a ton of pictures of this car, he told my husband & I the story behind the car- it was one of only 17 remaining cars from the tv series & movies! I never thought when we left home yesterday afternoon that before we got back home, I would’ve seen a real General Lee!!!

Yesterday was such a blessing to me. Not only did I have fun, got a couple of nice little prizes, & get to see my favorite movie/tv car, but something else happened. If you recall, I’ve mentioned in previous blog posts, I’ve mentioned how God has shown me I need to get the real me back.. to stop being “Eric’s wife” & be “Cynthia” again. Well, the real me came out yesterday, out of the blue. God is enabling me to be who He intended me to be, & it feels good! It’s also affected my husband. God once told me that if I get me back, not only will I be happier, but my marriage will improve. From what I saw yesterday, this is very true. My husband seemed more relaxed than he has in quite some time & we enjoyed each other’s company more. It’s strange- I thought I needed to change to please him, which is why I lost myself in the first place, yet instead, it caused us to lose much of the closeness we had when we first got together.

I’m sure that this change is something I will have to continue to focus on maintaining, but it is a good start. It gave me the kick in the butt I needed. I’ve been too afraid of rejection to even start focusing on getting myself back. Yesterday showed me it’s a good thing, & gave me courage.

I guess the point of telling you all this isn’t only to share in my good news, but to encourage you. Trust in God, even during the darkest times. He has a plan, & He will help you however you need. It may not be as fast as you want or how you expect it to happen, but it will happen. And, when it does happen, you will be blown away by His goodness & love. <3

Leave a comment

Filed under Abuse and the Healing Journey, Christian Topics and Prayers, Mental Health

Struggling..

Recently, I posted about how I am going to be real in my blog- I’ll share my struggles, & not be encouraging 100% of the time in order to let people know that sometimes you don’t feel “up” & that’s ok. Since that post, the thought has scared me. I am naturally very introverted & it’s not like I’ve had a lot of safe people I could talk to in my life until the last few years. Neither of these facts makes me comfortable with opening up to anyone, let alone in a public forum such as this, but I’m really trying!

I figured today I’d try again…

The C-PTSD has been really rough lately. My sleep (what little I get) is full of nightmares, many of which I don’t even remember. I’ve been dissociating a lot. My memory is worse than usual. I have no interest in things I once had interest in, such as knitting & crocheting. I just want to hide out alone in my bedroom, away from people. Frankly, it’s extremely depressing. It’s also maddening. I keep reading things like, “Let go of the past,” “Yesterday doesn’t matter anymore” & other similar quotes lately. I want to grab these people who write these things & shake them! Good or bad, the past DOES matter! The past helps to form you into the person you are today & teaches you valuable lessons. Besides, if the past was so unimportant, I wouldn’t have C-PTSD.

My dreams are interesting though. The ones that aren’t nightmares, that is. I had a dream recently about a situation that happened last January that was very upsetting with me. I learned I need to come to grips with that situation. The rest of my dreams have 2 constant messages- that I need to improve my self-care since I tend to neglect that, & that I need to find myself again. As I mentioned in a previous blog entry, since I have been with my husband, I became “Eric’s wife” & lost “Cynthia.” I need to get me back!. I believe in my heart that doing those two things will help my C-PTSD symptoms improve. I just hope & pray I can do these things & stick to it! Like many victims of narcissistic abuse, self-care in particular is a very difficult thing for me to do without feeling guilty.

A phrase from Shakespeare’s “Hamlet” keeps going through my mind- “To thine own self be true.” There is so much wisdom in those six little words. Thinking about it, I haven’t been true to myself much in my life. I don’t think many people are, truth be told. It’s hard to be yourself when you are surrounded by people who want you to be something other than what you are, & I believe this phenomenon is an epidemic in society today.

Being true to yourself means taking care of yourself, rather than only caring for others. it means resting when you need rest. It also means not losing your identity to please another person. While yes, you should change some when you get married since you’re now sharing your life with another person, you shouldn’t lose your dreams, desires, likes & dislikes. God made you as you are for a reason- embrace who you are & enjoy that person. I am working on doing that myself, & I hope you do the same!

9 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Ahhh…the joy that is a narcissistic mother

My mother has ended her silent treatment. I had a good run of a couple of months of silence this time, but it’s over now. She called me this morning & acted as if we’d just spoken yesterday. It’s like nothing happened- no silent treatment, no trashing me to my father, nothing bad…

In case I haven’t said it lately, I absolutely freaking HATE head games!!!

It was a typical conversation with my narcissistic mother. The exact same conversation that happens every time she stops speaking to me then eventually resumes talking to me. It’s also why I love it when she gives me the silent treatment & dread when she ends it.

She called under the guise of looking for my father- as he often does, he vanished for hours. Without a cell, she has no means of reaching him when he is away from home. Then there was the complaining about him, & that morphed into “did I tell you about my latest back problem?” Side note: I have no sympathy for her back problems, because, as many of you know, when I was 19, my mother threw me into a wall so hard, I was in constant pain for 10 years. I quit working outside the home a few months later. Then there was the usual guilt trip because my husband works long hours (my parents seem to believe I have some evil powers that make him work long hours against his will while I live like I’m on vacation..), & telling me again about a man who recently died who my mother is glad is dead. I must admit, that last part had me laughing. Not because the man has passed away of course or even her coldness about his passing (that was just disconcerting!), but because my mother claims he is a terrible person because he liked to present himself as such a great person when he really wasn’t. According to her, this man even wrote his own obituary & “it sure made him sound like a great guy!” Yes, you read that right. A narcissist is complaining about another person’s narcissistic behavior. Can you wrap your head around that one? I’m still working on it..

Is it any wonder I’ve had a headache all day? As if starting out my day that way thanks to anxiety & nightmares waking me last night wasn’t quite enough…throw in a Mom call & my head is not happy with me..

My mother’s call has skewed my day. I was ok considering I had a rough start to the day. Now? I feel shaken up. Anxious, angry, depressed, dissociating a lot, head achy, & exhausted. It is ridiculous things are this way, however, it is the norm for those times that I have to deal with my mother.

There was also a small part of me that was feeling guilty earlier today for not calling my parents or suggesting lunch together or something similar. Unfortunately, this seems to be the norm for children of narcissistic parents- always at least some guilt in there somewhere for something, some perceived slight against the parents or failure to measure up to their unrealistic expectations.

I think the reasoning is because we are raised by narcissistic parents to feel guilty because we never quite measure up. We don’t get good enough grades in school, or study the right subjects. We always fail because we aren’t whatever they think we should be. We don’t choose the career they want us to work, or marry the person they think we should marry, or drive the right car, or we disappoint them with some other life choices. We are conditioned to feel guilty & the frequency in our lives of knowing how often we disappoint our narcissistic mothers is so painful. That isn’t always easy to shake off, even when we are adults & know better.

But yanno something?? When we “fail” our narcissistic parents, we are simply living life according to our rules as we should. We are following God’s plan for our lives rather than their plans, which is obviously way more important! As Shakespeare said in “Hamlet”, “To thine own self be true.” What wise advice! Living for someone, anyone, else is a guaranteed way to make yourself utterly miserable!

And, as for feeling guilty for not spending time with your narcissistic parents, I’ll share something that God has shown me many times. My parents are reaping what they’ve sown with me. I don’t want to spend time with them because of the sorry way they have treated me for my entire life. Who wants to spend time with anyone who mistreats or abuses them?! If you are battling guilt for setting boundaries on your interaction with your narcissistic parents, please remember that- they are reaping what they have sown. People who sow bad seeds (being abusive, neglectful, hurtful, manipulative) will sow an unpleasant harvest (being ignored, strong boundaries that are enforced, not tolerating abuse) in return. That doesn’t mean something is wrong with you- it means you are a normal person!!

Now if you’ll pardon me, I’m off for some well needed self care. Music, relaxing, snuggling furkids & a shower…

Leave a comment

Filed under Abuse and the Healing Journey, Christian Topics and Prayers, Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Mental Health, Narcissism

What Is More Important To You- God’s Word Or Tradition?

Last night, I was watching Jesse Duplantis preach on the TBN channel. I love his preaching- not only is he fun, his preaching isn’t “fluffy” like some other preachers. He touches on deeper issues than how to be blessed, how to be healed, how to prosper financially, etc. such as holy living.

So anyway, last night’s topic was very interesting. It came from his sermon series “Gospel Casino” (available at http://www.JDM.org if you’re interested). He mentioned how when he was first saved, & first going to church, there were so many traditions & ways the church he went to did things. Their traditions were extremely important to them. Rev. Duplantis said something in his heart felt wrong so he started looking up what the Bible had to say about certain things. The first thing he found was Mark 7:13 ” Thus you nullify the word of God by your tradition that you have handed down. And you do many things like that.” He realized his church’s traditions were more important to them than God’s word! Upon reading this, he started researching what God says about all kinds of things in the Bible. As a result, he has become an absolutely wonderful, inspiring preacher!

I got to thinking a bit after listening to this sermon.. how many people do this very thing- put their own traditions, habits, whatever ahead of God’s word? This is a very common behavior especially for us daughters of narcissistic mothers. We grew up knowing our thoughts, feelings, beliefs, even instincts were all flawed-Mom knows what’s right, not us. So, we often continue dysfunctional behaviors into adulthood because it is what we were told to do- it became habit.

In my last entry, I mentioned how when I got together with my husband, I quickly lost “Cynthia” & became “Eric’s wife.” This is a good example of what I’m talking about- I grew up thinking I was such a terrible person, no wonder I became what I thought my husband wanted instead of hanging onto my real self! I carried my old, dysfunctional beliefs into adulthood just because it was what was normal to me. Thank God He’s been pestering me for years about getting myself back! Only recently have I had the inner strength to begin doing just that, & I am grateful He is helping me do it!

I want you to think about your life. What do you do because Mom always did it? What do you do a certain way because that’s how it was always done in your family? Do you go to a specific church because Grandma went there, then Mom & it’s expected for you to go too? Did you get into a certain line of work because that was expected of you?

Whatever you are doing, I encourage you to pray about it. Ask God what He would have you do, then make changes as necessary. Once you begin doing that, you will feel such indescribable joy! There is an amazing satisfaction & peace knowing you are doing God’s will for your life.

I know I’m hardly the most famous author in the world. Even so, I love what I do! I get an incredible satisfaction from writing in this blog & writing my books. And, when people tell me they were inspired from something I’ve written or learned something from it, I am thrilled! :)

Leave a comment

Filed under Abuse and the Healing Journey, Christian Topics and Prayers, Mental Health

Dreams

Good afternoon! I hope you’re enjoying your Sunday!

It’s been an interesting week since my last entry. I have been learning so much! God has been showing me all kinds of things! Mostly, through my dreams.

Dreams are fascinating! Did you know they protect your sanity? Dreaming all night long keeps your mind active & healthy, even when you don’t remember all of the dreams.

I believe the dreams you do remember, you remember for a reason. They are messages from God. This past week, God has been encouraging me that although things may be difficult, He is with me & I am healing. Also, when I married my husband, I lost who I am. I quickly became “Eric’s wife” & lost “Cynthia” in other words. God also showed me that I need to get “Cynthia” back. I’ve known this for years, but never did anything about it until now. And, back in February, I heard about an ex of mine who had murdered his boyfriend & himself. Through a dream earlier in the week, God showed me that I didn’t talk about it at the time because it upset my husband, then stopped even thinking about it. I need to take some time to come to terms with that dreadful situation.

All of this came from dreams I had this past week!

Dreams are often symbolic, & can be difficult to interpret. I’ve never been overly good at interpretation, but God is helping me improve. I have found a great website about dreams- http://www.DreamMoods.com . I check it when I am confused about what my dreams mean- looking up certain things I see in the dream, then asking God if this is what the dream means. Or, if there are various meanings to the symbol, I ask God which one, if any, fit my situation. The clarity God is giving me by doing this is amazing! This past week, my mood has improved drastically, & I feel inspired.

Do you pay attention to your dreams? If not, I strongly suggest paying attention to them, & learning to interpret them! You will be amazed at the insight you gain. Give it a try.

Leave a comment

Filed under Christian Topics and Prayers, Mental Health

Being Real

Good morning, Dear Readers!

I was thinking about trying to write something positive & encouraging today, & I couldn’t come up with anything. Why? Honestly, I’m in a pretty lousy mood. There have been a lot of negative things going on in my life lately, & all the things I’m learning for the new book are a lot to take in. I’m learning about so many behaviors that are abusive, that I never thought were abusive. I’m seeing clearly just how many people have abused me during my life, even people I never thought of as abusive. It’s really a lot to process! Plus, the heat & bright sun of the summer tends to depress me anyway. I’m so NOT a summer gal! Give me autumn or winter instead, please!

This all makes it hard for me to be positive & encouraging right now. I was starting to feel guilty about that (only adding to my lovely mood), & prayed. God immediately showed me something. People do not need positivity & encouragement only. They need genuine people, which is what I am. While it’s good to be positive, people also need to see that sometimes, you don’t feel positive, & that is ok. Everyone has off days. Sometimes, if people see you as only positive, they feel bad about themselves when they have an off day or two. They feel as if they’re sinning, not measuring up or failing.

We all have off days, sometimes several in a row, & that is OK!  Take it easy & practice good self-care on those days. As for me, I am going to take off this week, & not work on the new book. I’m going to relax as much as possible & help myself to feel better soon. 

7 Comments

Filed under Abuse and the Healing Journey, Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Mental Health