Then there was silence

Then there was silence… for three years!

Something happened. Obviously. I couldn’t talk about it.

I still find it hard to talk about some of it. I have discovered that I am insanely scared of exposing my vulnerabilities to certain people; I’m afraid of repercussions. My experience tells me that when I let the shield down, the knife goes in. It is ingrained in me. I help you and… I’m fine.

Then silence happened. I feel a need to communicate the journey of the past three years – it is a way for me to work through fear. I am provoking myself with ‘truth or dare’. No. Truth AND Dare. Both. There are some serious patterns I need to break and I am determined (and afraid). Here goes:

I broke. In a million pieces. I can never be reassembled to what I was before; neither do I want to be. I’m just letting you know that the pieces are still shattered and the glue isn’t dry yet.

What happened:

  1. I was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
  2. I have had PTSD since I was in my early teens.
  3. I sincerely do not know why I have PTSD (doctor says it doesn’t matter).
  4. This time PTSD almost killed me. I was extremely ill for 6 months, but kept it a secret.
  5. Today PTSD governs my life. I have no choice.

 

There is, of course, LOTS more to say. All you need to know for now is that I am happy and that all the choices I have made in the past 2 years are because of PTSD, not despite.

Like moving to Papua New Guinea. Yep. No longer in Cairns. Now Mr Husband and I are in Port Moresby. More about that another day.

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… and fear sets in

Yesterday I wrote a post about how we need to be our own heroes. River made a fantastic comment to this saying “… and when I’ve stepped out of my comfort zone, I’m tormented for days with wondering “Have I made a fool of myself? Are people laughing at things I said and did? Are they laughing at me?”

Man oh man oh woman, do I know that feeling well…

It is terrible – when I let loose, get passionate, speak with volume, arms flying and it all feels so true – then I punish myself for days, thinking I have made a fool of myself. That I have overwhelmed people and should just shut up! I feel so different; so loud.

Just yesterday I got all inspired, asking my guests if didn’t find it absurd that while we in Australia are upset about 25.000 boat-people and Islamofobia has hit our part of the world, Lebanon has received 180.000 refugees from Syria in only 2 months, housing them, feeding them and doing the best they can to care for them. It got so quiet. I felt as if everyone just stared, so I sat down and kept quiet too.

Which was probably the right thing to do, as it was movie-night and we were ready with pizza, soda and chips. But still… I wonder if I will ever accept that I just cannot keep quiet. I hope to surround myself with people who don’t mind… who might even like it…

 

Inuk

Last night I went to the movies. There is a new movie out, Inuk, about the struggles to find identity in today’s Greenland. The movie has won tons of awards on international film festivals around the world and had world premier to the public here in Nuuk last week.

The movie touches something universal about identity, fear and loss of self. The name, Inuk, is singular for the word Inuit, which mean people or humans. It is also the name of the main character.

I had so many reflections on the movie afterwards that I couldn’t sleep. It was such a powerful experience. Apart from being a well told story, the cinematography was amazing. It adds to the experience that I am here, that I currently walk around in the scenery. The initial part of the movie is filmed in what looks like Nuuk and it was so much fun to sit in the local cinema and hear the reactions from people. There was a lot of giggling and chit-chat the first half hour. When the movie finished, the audience broke into spontaneous applause. I understand why. I would go see it, if I was you.

Header: Danish Spring 2012

Someone can read my mind. That someone is Tina Beth who is a genius with a computer. She has created an appropriate header representing my current state of mind. I have been drinking so much coffee these days I am supporting three families in Columbia on a daily basis.

I love the new green. It reminds me of the teacup I put on the blog in my first attempt to build the blog. But this green is nicer. Don’t you think?
I can’t believe how lucky I am to have talented and supportive friends like this. Woo hoo!

Come hate with me…

I have a fetish. It’s an American blog called Watts up with that? They don’t believe in climate change and are one of the biggest blogs in the world, with bazillions of blog views. I get a kick out of reading what they say – it sort of gets me going in this super angry ‘you have got to be kiddin’ way (insert bucket loads of swearing).

They had one post I recently I thought was funny. It was on the recent Queensland election, which I haven’t had much to say about (I guess they interpret climate change in a very broad way.) The headline read: A minivan will have more seats than the Labor party in the new Parliament.’ Look at this:

It sort of explains why Anna Bligh stepped out of politics doesn’t it?

The record goes to…

When we talk about Indigenous disadvantage in Australia, we know the states we are talking about. At least we think we do. Because we are furthest behind in Queensland aren’t we? In Western Australia a 10-year-old is incarcerated for accepting a stolen Freddo Frog from a friend. And don’t get me started on the Northern Territory. I’ve talked about this already.

But guess what? When it comes to health of Aboriginal people, the state which is the furthest behind is Victoria. This includes child protection and education. An article in The Australian reports the following

More broadly, Aborigines in the southern state also are more likely than non-indigenous Victorians to be trapped in the criminal justice system, be admitted to hospital, suffer chronic illness and are less likely to finish school, attend university and have a job.

But that is the general picture across the nation. The politicians respond by saying that there are “profound, very serious challenges in health and the justice system.” Unfortunately it is not the system they see as challenged, it is the people. To find answers to the poor health and education of Aboriginal people they  look for police interventions to solve re-offending rates and imprisonment.

How about doing something about the intergenerational disadvantage? The ongoing grief and trauma? I’m only asking.

 

Full weekend!

Once home from the Cairns fruit and veggie market, we entertained ourselves by serving one glamorous dish after the other to each other. Mr Husband tried cooking pawn laksa for the first time. It will not be the last:

I felt I had to try the cinnamon bun recipe, just to check if it really is as good as I claim…

This, of course, led to many hours on the sofa, crochet or fishing magazines in hand and watching old movies. I, for one, had forgotten how good “What’s eating Gilbert Grape” is. “Syriana” was worth the second view as well!  Thank you also to SBS for showing “the King of Kong” (go get it if you haven’t yet seen it – we still got sucked in on this our third view). All in all, not too bad for a dull, grey, rainy weekend. We have proven we can survive without internet. NOW GIVE IT BACK!