You know how when you were a child you only had to cover your eyes and you thought that you could not be seen? Then as you become a teen you begin to feel like everybody is looking at you and you are certain they are staring at that zit on your chin or your hair that was out of place.
As an adult when PTSD flares it can feel like that again. Phobias about what people think of you and how they are going to respond to you are understandable when you are a child right. Or are they? I know the world teaches this but what does the gospel teach? The gospel teaches that we are to be worried about what Heavenly Father thinks, not about what other people think. He gives us a code of conduct at a young age. In The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter day Saints children 12 and under, known as Primary Children are taught they are children of God and his will should come first and teens learn from “The Strength of Youth” so that they know the proper conduct of one who believes in Jesus Christ and follows him. The relationship they have with their parents is still predominant though and needs to be recognized. I believe this is so in order that the parent will recognize their responsibility or at least so that it will manifest that to God it is a responsibility not to be taken lightly.
The other day I had some emotional and thought “energy” surfacing probably from my meditation. When you meditate you are going to draw up feelings from the subconscious that you may not realize that you had. It can be very powerful and seem very real. So it is important that you understand this prior to meditation so that you know how to handle it. (I have a personal witness that these things also arise in massage therapy, as well as in other therapy’s, and also in an intimate relationship, hopefully consummated in marriage.) In the situation I am referring to it concerned interactions with people that I have already worked through in the past consciously but were just hanging out in the sub-conscious. I am glad to let them go. What is important to remember is that these things do not identify where you truly are today necessarily, and if it is “old stuff” just remember to be the “observer” and let it go right on by, because it will, this is one of the beautiful rewards of meditation.
I had this happen to me the other day. I was actually in a fearful and troubled state about interacting with other which is something from my past. What was really interesting was that I had the biggest feeling that others must be totally aware of how I am feeling. It caused me to speak to the lady that I was helping me with a ride home with my groceries. There is no way that she knew what I was feeling and I hope my talking to her did not make her feel uncomfortable.
She just lives a couple of blocks away and I had some bigger shopping that I wanted to do and knew it would be too heavy for me to carry home so I asked if she could give me a lift which she was glad to do. The fact that I asked for help from someone I do not know very well may be a good sign and it could be due to the meditation. I do not usually ask people for assistance. Typically I take care of myself and when someone does something for me I look at it as coming from God. Then I do not get caught up in their snares and traps that people set out. I try to be open to serving people but their kindnesses have typically come with an IOU or are used as a reason to attack me or shut my mouth about the gospel, none of which do I find acceptable any longer, so I keep my eyes wide open. Otherwise it can trip me up and cause me to go into my addictive behaviors to comfort myself.
It may be obvious that my PTSD has a lot to do with other people and how to interact with them. I have spent 55 years of my life figuring out how to understand myself and Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost and now I need to be able to figure out how to relate to other human beings in a healthy way. Let me rephrase that, in the way that Heavenly Father wants me to so that I carry all the “beatitudes” into my social life and apply them to myself as well. Doing for others I have typically done fine with, it is giving me the same courtesy that I need to get experience in. I told her how I was feeling i.e. like a person with PTSD and not knowing if people meant what they said or if they were just wanting to look “nice” without really being so.
It was hard to figure out just what I was hoping to gain by saying something. Like I said, one thing I thought for sure was that she must know what I was feeling like. Did I want a shoulder to cry on, to hear me say it myself, or did it just need to be acknowledged and “witnessed” by more than just myself? I started to sense that it was from the meditation and that the sensations would pass. After a good night’s sleep I did wake without the cloud of concern that had been over me the day before. It was then that I made the observation that it is curious how as a child you think no one can see you when you cover your eyes and by teens you think everyone is staring at you and as an adult you believe that they cannot only see you and all your flaws but that they can read your mind or sense your feelings as well; especially when you are in a phobia, panic, or what I call a PTSD state. (Remember I have no degrees or credentials in psychology.)
With what I have learned about life and energy and people so far in my life I would say that, yes, she could have sensed it but more than likely had other things on her mind and would have just allowed me my “space”. This young lady and I have not spent much time together either so she does not “know” my moods. Another friend a few weeks ago knew when I was troubled about something and asked about it. While we come from very different backgrounds she is a person I respect and am glad to have in my life because she is open about who she is and she allows me to be free as well.
How does one open the door, “Gee, I have PTSD and it is tough”, not sure how someone would take that, but this young woman was kind and acknowledged what I said without getting caught into a big pity pot discussion. She did not make a big deal out of it and I was glad of that. It still blew me away that I would think that I needed to say something. Maybe it was not that I needed to say it but that the Holy Ghost was letting me know that Heavenly Father wanted her to hear it. (Maybe it was a way of inviting “unity” by sharing my “pain” without asking her to solve it for me, because we both know that God is the one we look to for that.) I have recently been taught about this principle by the Holy Ghost and this is very interesting to me. Even the writing of it has been therapeutic and allowed me to expand on the possibilities here.
I have to tell you that it is pretty obvious to me that the Holy Ghost is trying to help me understand how to communicate with the rest of his children. I have worked hard to be vessel for the learning so I know he will not let me down. I will continue to watch this phenomenon as life goes on. It will be interesting to see what he is going to teach me.
Note to self: Freedom means taking ownership for where you are at. Observing and watching while studying and calling out to the Lord in prayer for understanding and direction.