Misplacing Objects

Finished “About Me” page

One of the frustrating things about my daily living as highly functional Me is misplacing objects.  As a child my mother taught me how to mentally walk through my activities so I could learn where I left an object.  Of course, it was only helpful if I had access to those memories.  Now, I ask internally for help locating a misplaced object.  An answer may quickly come or not.  When no information is forthcoming, then I have learned to just let time pass and usually the object will be discovered.  But if I can’t let go of the desire or the actuality of hunting for the item, then usually it takes longer for the object to be shown to me.  Since I’ve learned this, I usually don’t get upset.  But the can opener is missing and I need it to prepare food.  Grrrhhh!

I’m continuing to manage my acidic saliva by dissolving Xylitol mints in mouth.  My tongue and buccal areas feel marginally better.  As long as I consume food that I have made from scratch, then the presence of food does not stimulate very acidic saliva.

I have been experiencing heightened body memories.  I really really dislike this particular sensation in my vagina.  It is also painful and distracting.  Also, I have experienced my ‘altered taste’ off and on this last week.  I’ve experienced difficulty remembering the day of the week.  This is often an indication that I am ‘losing time.’

Anxiety is high.  My landlord needs access to my apartment so an insurance agent can assess the house.  My current landlord lives in a different state and is the daughter of my original landlord.  My original landlord unexpectedly died about 15 months ago.  We’re quite aware of the disordered state of our apartment.  Since 2013 we have limited energy, which has limited our abilities to properly care for ourselves and our living space.  I am frustrated.  I think there should be help for someone like me.  If there exists help with daily living for someone like me, then I haven’t looked or asked in the those places, yet.  So tomorrow we will take frequent breaks while we push ourselves beyond exhaustion to make the apartment clean and ordered to meet basic expectations.

 

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New Sleep Pattern Emerges

I’m sorry I was unable to post on earlier this week. It took me a few days to realize that my immune system was fighting something and that I needed to not work, take Chinese Herbs and rest.

 

Lack of sleep has always been a statement of fact in life. During my first 30 years, I never slept more than 3 hours consecutively. In undergraduate school, I used it to an advantage by scheduling my work hours during the time when everyone else was sleeping. My goal was to get 2 3-hour periods of sleep each 24-hour day. Since the return of my previously repressed childhood abuse memories, I have needed light to sleep. A friend expressed concerned when she discovered that I was sleeping with an overhead light on. So I transitioned to leaving a light on in an adjacent room.

I told my primary care physician about 7 years ago that if you grouped all nights in a year together, then I would say that 25% of the nights that I got 6 hours of sleep. More recently, my sleep study showed that I never go into Third Wave or REM sleep (the 4th and 5th stages of sleep).

The infographic by Heidi Hanson about her “5 Step Self-holding Exercise for Self-Regulation of PTSD Symptoms”, which was inspired by Peter Levine’s work ‘Somatic Experiencing’, recently came to my attention. See link below:

The 5 Step Self-holding Exercise

I tried the first 3 steps. The third step felt very uncomfortable. So I have just done the first two steps at least once daily for a week. Voila!  I am sleeping for 7 consecutive hours per night starting Wednesday night 02/11. I am sleeping 1am to 8am. Quite amazing!  Since February 2013, I have been unable to get to sleep before 4am. The terror and sleep revulsion has been insurmountable.

When I changed the third step slightly to holding back of head instead of the front, then the discomfort dissipated. The concept of holding my head side-to-side and front-to-back is appealing to me. During times of active change, I often experience ‘brain pain.’ Brain pain is not a traditional headache. My brain pain has only been alleviated via ‘energy work.’

Sometime during my active psychotherapy counseling, it was discovered that my left and right brain hemispheres were not actively communicating. It was no surprise to us. Our perception was each hemisphere had ‘big picture’ job and they did not need to communicate to each other to get their job done. I have received a considerable number of hours of ‘energy work’ to facilitate and improve left and right hemisphere communications. And I can no longer state that my hemispheres operate individually.

 

A New Body Memory

I continue to experience some body memories 24/7/365. My daily body memories are the physical sensations of my sexual abuse (vagina, colon, throat, neck). These sensations are always worse during menstruation and the week of the full moon. I’m ‘used’ to expending some measurable amount of my daily energy while experiencing these body memories.

A few days ago, new-to-my-awareness, a body memory has added itself to my daily experiencing. In addition to the new experience, I felt noticeably more tired and more dissociation. I felt myself instinctively seeking out ‘body numbing’ activities, like stimulating acupressure end points, eating chewy sweet candy, knitting without breaks, choosing to distract myself at work, to name a few.

I think I understand the origin. Since my sexual abuse started so early, in the first week of my life, the cellular locations are slightly askew. Because when you are a baby, you are small and the cells affected by that trauma become cells in adjacent body areas. For instance, oral throat trauma has previously expressed itself around my collar bones, neck and upper chest.

This newest memory has created the sensation of muscle contracture of the front and back of my legs. It makes walking a more difficult task, like walking with two fence posts. Additionally, I am yawning most of the afternoon and evening, an atypical activity for me.

from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Body_memory

“Body memory is a hypothesis that the body itself is capable of storing memories, as opposed to only the brain. This is used to explain having memories for events where the brain was not in a position to store memories and is sometimes a catalyst for repressed memory recovery. These memories are often characterized with phantom pain in a part or parts of the body – the body appearing to remember the past trauma. The idea of body memory is a belief frequently associated with the idea of repressed memories, in which memories of incest or sexual abuse can be retained and recovered through physical sensations. The idea is pseudoscientific as there are no hypothesized means by which tissues other than the brain are capable of storing memories. Some evidence suggests that such means may be available to simpler forms of life.   ……   Cellular memory is an additional hypothesis that memories can be stored outside the brain. However, unlike body memory, the cellular memory hypothesis states that these memories are stored in all the cells of human bodies, not in the bodies’ organs. The idea that non-brain tissues can have memories is also believed by some individuals who have received organ transplants, though this is also considered impossible.

There is a great article about Body Memories and their place in the healing process on http://www.survivormanual.com/2011/11/what-are-body-memories-and-how-to-heal-them/. The below quote is from that article.

“Body memories can take a long time to heal, most likely because they are the last memories to be addressed. To be respected. To be listened to. I mean, really. My body remembers, at a cellular level? What is this, the Science Fiction channel? ‘When the body remembers the traumatic incident at a different time from when the mind remembers the incident, it can feel very crazy making,’ says Discussing Dissociation’s Kathy Broady, LCSW.”