Thursday, January 23, 2014

Happy Birthday, V--------

Today is my best friend's birthday. At least, he USED to be my best friend. But our relationship was one of the many casualties of my PTSD. Everyone has their limits and he reached his when a cop who didn't understand what PTSD was, tried to accuse my best friend of domestic violence after I hurt myself during a flashback. That was his breaking point. That was also almost four years ago. I've done a lot of work to get better since then, and recently my friend has allowed me back in his life -- just a little bit. Our friendship is no where near what it used to be and I don't know if it will ever be that way again. He doesn't really trust me and I'm pretty sure he's just waiting for me to go bat shit crazy again. Can't really say that I blame him. I put him through the wringer and he didn't deserve it.

I had bought a birthday card for him the first January when we were no longer speaking, back in 2011. But I realized that sending it to him wouldn't be something he would appreciate, so I held onto it. And it's been sitting in the same spot on my desk, collecting dust and reminding me of what an epic failure I was as a friend, for three solid years. But once I got the Vice President position at my charity (PTSD Survivors of America), I realized I needed to clean off my desk and try and get organized. I thought I put the card somewhere for safekeeping. Now I can't find it. I don't know if my super crappy short-term memory is to blame or what but I spent pretty much all of yesterday looking for this damned card. I asked the faeries to return it; prayed to St. Anthony. Nothing worked. The card is GONE.

Now the simple solution to this is to march myself down to Walgreens and pick up a new card. That's what a regular person would do. But my PTSD likes to play with my head whenever it can. So instead of  my brain being logical, I got to play the "I have to find it" game all day. I got panicky and "you have to find the card" was on some auto-loop in my head. The misplacement of a stupid card should not throw someone into such a panic that they are slamming cabinets and pulling out drawers in a frenzy. But this is my life. The panic can come from anywhere, leaving me cold and shaking, curled up in a ball, rocking back and forth repeating "where's the card."

And as if that weren't enough, the doubt started creeping in too. "Why can't you find the card?" "Maybe you shouldn't send him a card." "Maybe this is a sign." "He doesn't want a card from you." "Maybe he's just being your friend out of pity."

All this nonsense over a $3.49 birthday card.

This is my life. Panic attacks and self-doubt because of a birthday card.

Anyway, happy birthday V.

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