So this morning I am a raven, I am a wildflower. and I am putting myself back in the hands of God where I belong.
What about you? How’s your Friday going?
PS: The fall giveaway closes tonight at midnight. Have YOU entered?
Kyle said he wanted me to write about my experience as the wife of a child-abuse survivor who suffers from Complex PTSD. I decided to jot down a few things I have been learning. They’re good reminders for me and maybe for other care-givers/family/partners out there.
I need to remember that…
1. I can identify/anticipate potential anxiety triggers like certain environments, sounds, smells, topics, or situations but it’s unrealistic (and unhealthy) to think I can avoid every trigger that could possibly affect Kyle.
2. Taking care of my partner means taking care of myself. Caregivers are notoriously bad at this but Secondary Trauma Syndrome is a real thing. I need give myself time to rest and heal, too, whatever that means for me today.
3. A partner, spouse, or loved one should be a crucial part of a support system not the ENTIRE support system. I am not Kyle’s therapist or doctor or paid professional. I’m his wife. And I don’t have to figure this out alone.
4. PTSD is not an excuse or waiver for bad behavior, rudeness, aggression or abuse. I will never keep myself in a situation where I am not emotionally or physically safe. This is also something Kyle has insisted we agree on.
5. I can help “ground” or re-focus Kyle by asking simple questions that deal with the immediate space and sensations (ie. where are we right now? what day is it? what city do we live in? what does this jacket feel like? what color is my shirt?). I’ve also discovered that sometimes familiar songs sung loudly can halt the progression of a panic attack. “I’m a Little Tea Pot” works really well (I do all the motions).
6. I can rely on God to continue to heal Kyle’s heart, little by little, day by day.
PS: One more day to enter to win the coziest, softest autumn scarf you ever did meet!
The last couple blog days have been pretty serious around here. Thought we could use a good old-fashioned dance break…
I think this one’s pretty appropriate. Also, I just kind of love it.
Be back tomorrow with the third in our series of posts on living with PTSD. Thank you, again, to the wonderful people who left such kind, supportive messages for us.
PS: If you haven’t entered to win this beautiful fall scarf yet, the giveaway is still open…
Like a lot of other blogs written by people in love, I sometimes think maybe I give off this impression that Kyle and I do nothing but go apple-picking and having picnics in the park and being super fuzzy, lovey-dovey all the time. Recently, I’ve been inspired by some of these wonderful bloggers who have been so open about their lives and relationships and I thought it was important to share some things with all of you.
I’ve alluded to this before but Kyle has some pretty serious stuff in his past, stuff that we’re still coming to grips with, working through together. If you’ve ever wondered why this blog is called “Love is an Adventure,” this is why.
Honestly, the last almost seven years together have been utterly blissful at times and at others, unbearably painful. I have questioned our decision to get married. I have longed to abandon the heartbreak and pain that we are forced to face daily. I have dreaded that soul-sorrow that stays aching in the bones.
Kyle suffers from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (or PTSD, as it is often called). Without sharing too many of the details here, I can say that it stems from early childhood abuse at the hands of a stranger.
Kyle and I have thought before about sharing some of our experiences of healing here on the blog but it has been difficult to think of how to really talk about it in a way that might be helpful for others. I have decided to spend the better part of this week highlighting some of the lessons he and I have learned as we have struggled our way through some very dark days. Maybe what we share can shed some light on his experience of PTSD.
It’s important for me to say that no two people are alike and that no two experiences of PTSD are alike so while there are some common symptoms, reactions, triggers, and treatments, every survivor’s story is unique to him or her. We have no right or wrong answer, only many questions and some moments of hope to share. We’re not experts on PTSD, just experts of our own experiences. We share this with the hope that it may offer some encouragement to someone out there struggling like we have, like we are, like we will continue to do.
PTSD is the monster that should have ripped us apart. But God is the God who has continued to hold us together when we couldn’t see past any of it, when we couldn’t even breathe.
I hope you’ll read this week.
PS: Still time to enter the First of Fall Giveaway and win a softer-than-soft scarf!
We spent the afternoon hours at another one of my favorite places…Lynd’s Fruit Farm. Just north of Columbus in Pataskala, the Lynd Farm is famous for its pick-your-own orchard and its amazing vegetables, jams, jellies, baked goods, and corn maze. We took nearly a hundred pictures but thought I’d share a few of my favorites here…
That’s right. I went there. Don’t judge me.
Kyle carting around our spoils. Among them: a gigant-o bag of fresh kettle corn, three pumpkins, a jug of cider, and two jars of jam. Cause when we go Lynd’s, we go crazy.
It was an awesome Saturday and I now I have a big bag of fresh-picked apples to turn into applesauce. I’ll post the recipe if anyone would like it.
What about you? What are you doing to dive into fall? And, more importantly, do you want to win this hand-knit scarf to help you celebrate? Giveaway is open until Thursday night…
Oh, my goodness, I have been WAITING for this day to come forever! I am so excited to announce this giveaway because whoever wins it will receive…
This gorgeous hand-knit scarf, made with organic cotton in a buttery rich pumpkin color, complete with gold vintage button detailing. It is so, so soft and pretty…I almost canceled the giveaway because I wanted to keep it for myself.
This gift is a really special one for me because it was made especially for this blog by my mother who is an extremely gifted knitter. I’ve been telling her for a long time that she needs to open her own Etsy shop but she says she gets more enjoyment making things for people she loves. So…count yourself among the loved! And be sure to follow her blog here for other craft projects she’s working on…
Also, in this package, a little emerald tin of imported jasmine tea.
So what, you may ask, can you do to win this cozy fall gift?
Five possible entries: (leave a comment for EACH)
- Be an official follower via Google Friend Connect (only mandatory entry)
- Mention this giveaway in a blog post and include a link
- Tweet about the giveaway and include a link
- Like Love is the Adventure on Facebook
- Follow me on Twitter here
This giveaway will close on September 30 at midnight and I will announce the winner October 1.
Happy first day of fall! Go jump in a pile of leaves for me!
Today was a long day, a hard day, a battered and a bruised day, a sublime day, a no-time day, a have to sleep sometime day…
But I have Kyle. And that makes it all okay.
Tonight at church, I had passed him a note that said I was feeling under the weather, anxious, exhausted. He handed me back my note and in sprawling pencil below, he had scribbled, “Don’t worry. I’ll take care of you.”
And isn’t that kind of what God says to us? I’m so quick to forget the second the worry and the fear creeps in. But doesn’t He say that? Don’t worry. I’ll take care of you.
It is a deep relief to fall into Kyle’s arms at the end of the day and say, “Hold me, I’m not strong enough to do this alone.” And as much as I forget it, this should be my prayer to God, too. Hold me. I’m not strong enough to do this alone.
PS: Giveaway on Friday morning!! I can’t wait to finally show you!
Tomorrow morning is my first day back at school. We’re on the quarter system and it’s slightly medieval, so that’s why we have such a late start date.
It seriously doesn’t matter how old I get, though, because the first day of school rolls around and I get a pack of butterflies in my stomach. You’d think it was the first day of kindergarten I get so nervous (you know, I counted yesterday and realized that if the university had grades, I would be in 20th grade this year).
It’s a good kind of nervous, mostly. I love school. Never mind that I’m an adult now, never mind that I’m teaching college students, I still find myself awake the night before, asking the same questions. Will I fit in? What if I’m not pretty or popular enough? Will the other kids like me? Will my students like me? What if my classes are too hard?
I guess the lesson here is, you’re never too old to get scared. I hope I remember to tell my children that.
So in honor of the first day of school, here’s a little blast from the past…
Obviously my fashion sense came at an early age. If that elephant sweater still fit…I would still wear it to class. Especially with polka-dots.
What about you? Anyone ever have a day as a grown-up where they thought, I’m not old to be doing this! I still need someone to pack my lunch and hold my hand when I cross the street?
PS: Fall giveaway the day after TOMORROW.
Yesterday was cool and rainy and I was definitely feeling the whole kitchen thing. I had spotted a recipe for stuffed peppers attached to a coupon in the Sunday paper a couple weeks ago and clipped it. Here’s the modified version I made for dinner last night.
Cook rice. Preheat oven to 350 F.
Remove pepper tops and seeds.
Brush with olive oil inside and out. Lightly salt and pepper inside.
Roast peppers, open tops up in oven for 30 min.
While peppers are roasting, saute sausage, onion, mushrooms, and herbs with 1-2 T olive oil on stovetop. Add chopped apple. Cook until all tender.
Stir in rice and heat through.
Fill peppers and serve. Garnish with pepper tops, if desired.
This was a light, satisfying meal and served about 4. Will totally make this again. I think it’s a company-worthy dish and looks so pretty on the plate. I also think this would be yummy without the meat, for any of my vegetarian/vegan readers.
What about you? Anyone have a fall recipe they’ve been itching to try?
PS: I hope you’re getting excited because it’s going to be Friday very soon…in case you haven’t heard, I’ll be announcing the fall giveaway!
On Saturday, I met Katie Valeska, the artist for the amazing autobiographical webcomic, Next Year’s Girl. And this is one of my favorites. Katie updates every Tuesday which makes Tuesday a day to put on my calendar…
And be sure to ‘like’ Next Year’s Girl on Facebook for updates, comic news, and more. Thanks to Katie for chatting with me at Independents’ Day!
What about you? Anyone have a favorite webcomic?
Well, today I have no sign to share. I got a little behind in my picture-taking but I should be back with my regular link up next Saturday.
To make up for it, I thought I’d share this with you…
If Petula Clark can’t make you smile, then there’s nothing more I can do for you.
I have a jam-packed weekend planned and I can’t wait to share pictures with you so check back tomorrow!
What’s going on for YOU this weekend?
PS: 6 days ‘til the fall giveaway…are you getting excited? Cough. Fine. Lie to me.