Let the Changes Begin!!

As part of my PTSD treatment my “team” (my mom, Mike, my Wraparound facilitators, W. and D. and my therapist) have encouraged me to exorcise my home of “ghosts”. That is to say, get rid of the things I owned that were anchoring me to the past and triggering bad memories. This process has been a long time coming, 5 years at least (and long overdue!), but the time has finally arrived.

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Aren’t they funky??

The first thing to go was my dishes. They were a wedding gift (there’s tip #1 that they should have been gone already) from family members who haven’t spoken to me in 7 years. Thanks to my beautiful and generous friend, Rita, I have a brand new set of square dishes. Very avant garde, if I do say so myself.

The next item to leave was the dinette set I owned with my ex-husband. It was his choice. He liked it. I didn’t particularly care for it, but wanted to keep the IMG_6638peace so that’s the one we bought. I went to the the local Bibles for Missions charity shop and found a beautiful set I just love!! It was a little bit more money than I had wanted to spend, but both Mike and my mom reminded me – I shouldn’t settle. So I bought it. And I love it!!

1279057235_104977918_1-Pictures-of--Baronet-kids-vintage-bedroom-furniture-white-french-provincial-sold-by-Sears-70s-80

The whole set looked like this. Cute when you’re under the age of 20.

My bedroom was in desperate need of change. I have been sleeping in the same bed since I was 12-years-old. It’s a double-sized canopy bed. When I got it, second-hand from my older cousin, it was painted white with blue and gold accents a la French Provincial style. A few years ago I stripped it down to its natural wood and it’s beautiful! I love this bed, but it’s also my marital bed and frankly, I don’t want to sleep in it anymore. Too many memories. Too many nightmares.

After much humming and hawing I went out on Friday and bought a new mattress. Queen-

The almost-impossible-to-put-together headboard. Thank you, Mike.

The almost-impossible-to-put-together headboard. Thank you, Mike.

sized. I feel so mature. Thanks to D. who gave me a frame and headboard (which took Mike about 2 hours to put together; I gave up after 1, but Mike prevailed because in his words “I’m and engineer and engineers don’t give up”).  Rian took the old bed. It’s just too beautiful to get rid of and she’s very excited about having a big bed (not to mention the 3″ memory foam mattress topper I had on there – super comfy). The cats have starting sleeping with Rian. Apparently their loyalty was to the memory foam and not to me. Cats are so fickle.

See the rich, warm tones of the natural wood? It was buried beneath layers of paint for 30+ years. I often feel an affinity with things like that. Natural beauty stifled by unnatural outside forces (getting all deep and almost poetic there).

See the rich, warm tones of the natural wood? It was buried beneath layers of paint for 30+ years. I often feel an affinity with things like that. Natural beauty stifled by unnatural outside forces (getting all deep and almost poetic there).

Alexi got a different bedroom set too. Alexi now has bunk beds, the ones that used to be

Alexi has yet to decide which bunk he wants to sleep so instead he switches between the two - in the middle of the night.

Alexi has yet to decide which bunk he wants to sleep so instead he switches between the two – in the middle of the night.

downstairs. His old dresser is now in the living room and it looks good out here.  Alexi has Rian’s old dresser. Rian has my old dresser that goes with the bedroom set. Rian’s twin bed was relocated downstairs and so was Alexi’s mate’s bed. The Madhouse was a bustle of activity over the last few days. All this would not have happened without Mike’s muscles and persistence.

I also chose to get rid of the oak tall clock that has stood guard in my hallway for the last 12 years. It was gift from the kids’ dad. I washed it down and had to scrub an upper corner. There was a stain that I hadn’t noticed before from one of the times he threw a plate of food at me. Yup, it’s time for those memories to go.

The US Veteran’s administration (most of the information I’m able to find about PTSD treatment is from military sources) recommends changing your environment (from Examiner.com)

Change your environment. A change of surrounding – whether you relocate, vacation, or take a short excursion to a relax, can help you to change your thinking and feel more safe.

I’m a little slow on the uptake, but now that I’ve got the ball rolling there’s no stopping me!!

My dad bought this dresser for my brother back in the 70s. It was painted white and had tacky wood knobs for handles. About 6 years I decided to strip it to see how it would turn out. There were layers of paint; white, pink, green. I couldn't believe this gorgeous piece of furniture was under all that yuck. I try to remember these things when I meet people I don't always like at first. I wonder what's beautiful under their yuck. I hope others offer me the same moment of consideration.

My dad bought this dresser for my brother back in the 70s. It was painted white and had tacky wood knobs for handles. About 6 years ago I decided to strip it down to see how it would turn out. There were layers of paint; white, pink, green. I couldn’t believe this gorgeous piece of furniture was under all that yuck. I try to remember these things when I meet people I don’t always like at first. I wonder what’s beautiful under their yuck. I hope others offer me the same moment of consideration.

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About Holly

I hope you're able to glean something from this blog, a nugget of wisdom, a new perspective, a smile or even a laugh. I enjoy getting feedback so please comment, share your story with me too. After all, we're here to help each other.
This entry was posted in anxiety, coping strategies, depression, Mental health, parenting, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, PTSD, single parenting and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to Let the Changes Begin!!

  1. I’ve read somewhere that most women, going through a rough time, cut their hair. When things in their life feel out of control, that at least is one thing they can control. I think your changes are very healthy! Sounds very cleansing. It sounds like your soul feels lighter after making those changes to your environment.

    • Holly says:

      That’s funny because I did cut and colour my hair a few years ago when my ex-husband first left! It has been very cleansing and I am feeling some relief from altering my environment. Thanks for commenting. I hope your brother is doing better.

      • I’m glad that you are feeling some relief! And, thanks for asking, my brother got to come home Sunday afternoon. They had a hard time getting his pain under control, but finally found something he can take, so now he can finish recovering from the pneumonia at home.

      • Holly says:

        YAY!! That’s great news. So happy to hear that he’s home. I know what I’m like when I’m not feeling well and all I want is my bed and my comforts around me. I’m sure he’ll recover much faster at home.

  2. Wow, that is alot of change. It must be like being a different house. I hope it gives you the affect you are hoping for and allows you to move forward.

  3. Pingback: Random Ramblings | survivingthemadhouse

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