What happened to the soundclick players on the posts?

Seems Soundclick has finally disabled the embedded player.

I notice overnight all the music links on this blog are gone. Here is a blog post on how much that affected my hits: https://anttismusic...

Friday, November 22, 2019

How psychological trauma defines us.

How psychological trauma Defines Us

By Antti Luode

I was walking around a near empty mall and watching at the people lazily
walking around with their take away coffee cups, watching at the shop windows,
in between the morning and the night. Most of them seemingly feeling fine.

In my mind was lingering the trauma that has defined me from my childhood,
the martyr story on how it has defined me. Not only on me. But on all these people who were seemingly fine. On all the people that I know.

I was thinking about the purpose of trauma. Anxiety attacks. Pain. People screaming at each other until they do not love each other anymore.

This is what I came up with.

In between birth and death psychological trauma is the wall that defines borders in the mental construction that we build. It is the wall that we may not be able to pass. It is the roof, the floor below us.

That is why people say that we are supposed to overcome it. We are supposed to be more than our pain. It is why the most successful people do not get mad when they are faced with incredible challenges. They just calmly revert to logical mode where they think about things coldly and rationally and then make a calculated move on the basis of what they want.

But when you walk around a railroad station for example. You will see these characters that have been crushed by trauma. Alcoholics, drug addicts, mental cases like me, looking for some way out of their pain. Living day to day looking for that door that would allow them to feel well. Most of the time just finding instances of pleasure and then returning straight back in to their pain.

Now we could think about the reasons for the pain from many different angles, we could think about the mental diseases that brought them this low. We could think about possible hard knocks in life that have left them sipping alcohol to ease their frayed nerves etc..

But in all cases it was the trauma that brought them there. For some it happens earlier, for some it happens later. But we all are susceptible to it. There is no person on this earth who can not be traumatized. Who says they can not be traumatized, that person is lying.

As I was standing there in the mall it came to my mind how similar trauma is to a wall. If you have read these posts I have been talking about my recent divorce recently a lot and I would like to use it as a example since it is so easy for me to describe the processes that happened in it now after 5 months of thinking about nothing else.

So I fell ill with epilepsy / bipolar 2 which made me feel extremely anxious and bad ca 8 years ago. This traumatized me more than anything in my life. More than hour and half of being threaded for my life back in 1991 when I was shaking like a leaf in a break in gone bad.

This disease re defined what I can and what I can not do.

My whole personality was cut into pieces. I was, was forced to
become someone that the young me would barely recognize. I quit watching movies because the scenes would give me panic attacks. Slowly, I began making different kind of music. My happy moments were slashed to maybe one tenth of the amount of my "previous life". I became incredibly afraid of death.

This trauma made things that I had earlier enjoyed almost impossible. Visiting my inlaws in states became so hard that back in 2016 I had to keep on buying beer / vine there just to keep my nerves in check by drinking a little every single night because I felt so bad. I was getting ten seizures a day.

Now. That trauma spread to my wife. The way I was limiting my life. She was limiting her life. My insomnia spread into her.  The way I could not be happy. It spread into her. My fears, spread into her. Which was not helped by 2 grand mal seizures brought on by all this which she saw both.

I no longer was the person she used to know.

And "all" that happened was a disease that most people could not recognize in me, not doctors, not my parents, not even my wife. All I knew was that I was feeling this incredible anxiety and I had no clue why. My seizures were called "panic attacks" back then which made the doctors prescribe me with medications that made my epilepsy worse.

After my wife saw my seizures. I could see in her. Something changed.

She no longer saw me as the person that I was. I heard later she had nightmares of my seizures.  Yet, there I was. Assuming things were as they had been. But they were not.

She began to withdraw from me.

I did not understand that at the time.

But in reality as she later confessed to me. She began thinking about divorce.

My trauma had essentially become a wall. It had spread from me to her. It had given her great discomfort and I had just become a source of pain for her.

This pain. I could not remedy it. I could not adjust to this situation. I could not give her more space. I became jealous of the people she was talking with.

Now lets talk a little bit about jealousy.

Jealousy to put simple. Is a territorial instinct. Nothing more. Nothing less.

You love someone. You want them to you. You want them to be yours and you want to be theirs. In a happy marriage this is given.

As I said on the AI article, it is about two egos mixing into one enjoying each others company. Which is why people get married.

Essentially the personal borders become blurry. There is no clear you and her anymore. There is US.

Here I am going to jump off the divorce saga and continue with ptsd as in other cases that I have been thinking about and the way they essentially are about this same thing.

Lets say a national identity. My father bought a book about a war between Finland and Russia in 1700's and he was talking about it excitedly, feeling strong feelings about that old war, that old feud between us and Russians.

Now, it has been 300 + years. But we and the Russians. We share a lot of history. A lot of warfare, a lot of killings, some time being part of the same nation. But there are these stories. This national trauma lingering around.

Every Finn. Some Russians (Russia is a big country and some are not that aware of Finland) Who has listened to these stories. Easily take a side.

They want to see their side in positive light while the other side is seeing in negative light. Simple 0 and 1 logic here.

Now the truth of course is something WAY more complicated than that. But here is the thing. Our brains do not like complicated explanations. It is easier to say "Finland good, Russia bad!" or vice versa.

This goes back to the trauma thinking. In the end of the day it is the trauma that decides  a lot of life and death questions.

Like take the current impeachment process in the United States for example. The democrats have orchestrated this massive, televised event in which the evils of Donald Trump are broadcast every day to the masses.

Every day we get to read these headlines stating how it is open and shut case.

Yet, the Republicans feel 180 degrees. The same news just prove to them that they are right.

And in the end of the day it comes down to republican senate that will most likely not impeach Trump no matter what.

That feeling of the US Senate and its republican senators. That feeling held by the democratic party and its supporters. That is a wall.

It is a wall that can not be crossed because that feeling is defined by Trauma.

Both sides think that the other is "bad". How do you argue with that?

Now if there was no such Trauma. As in my former marriage. Or as in between Finns and Russians. There could be a cool, logical discussion. Maybe ability to override the feeling.

But the feeling. In the end of the day is what makes the decisions. In the end of the day we do not live in world of rational, cognitive intelligence, but we live in a world defined by feelings.

It is the trauma in our feelings that defines us as people, as nationalities, as political party members.

If you removed the feelings. World would suddenly look very different.

First of all. I have felt a state where I had almost no feelings. I was treated with epilepsy medications called lamotrogine. And very soon after I began taking it. I suddenly realized that I could barely feel anything. It was a very weird, very surreal state.

I have also heard another bi polar person describe when he took medication for it, he suddenly could not feel love for his children.

Without emotions. What would come of human society?

Would there be anymore "Russians" or "Finns". Would there be anymore "marriages", would there be anymore "war" or political parties?

Would we just fall into straight logical rationality where we would analyze things endlessly. Would there be a point to life?

I mean, first life had no emotion. Just some amino acids beginning to wind around each other. Forming these weird prokaryotes that had no cell wall.

Dna is smart mind you (even simple life is able to do things thanks to the instructions hardwired to DNA) But it has no emotions.

Then we slowly got to more complicated life forms like flagellates that have a single "propellor" that they can use to move towards liquids with sugar in them and slowly we evolved into us.

Homo Sapiens.

Walking, talking, working, screaming, singing, thinking, driven by emotions.

Without emotions. What would we be?

A smart neuronal computer doing things, just because? Like machines?

Emotion.

Between birth and death, we feel emotions.

What are emotions.

In my mind, they are just about two things.

Birth and death.

Happiness. Is brain creating something new. Feeling good. Brain telling you that this is what you should be doing. Birth! SEX!

Pain. Is brain dying. Like in depression the brain begins to wither. Brain telling you. This is bad! Death!

Hate? When you feel hate. You are not content with your opponent, you are not seeing eye to eye. Your walls are clashing. Whether it be about a nation, a woman, business enterprise, political feeling and so on. You are afraid your opponent is A going to kill you or B going to kill your stance.

Curiosity? You are learning something new! Birth. You are creating a new thought, a new song, a new company.

Disgust? Someone is doing something you do not approve. Something that would make you feel like you would DIE if you had to do it.

Surprise? A sudden surge of something good or bad. A possible birth, a possible death. Most likely something small.

Anxiety? Feeling like something is leading to death!

After my strong PTSD, I quit watching movies because any small trigger could make me feel like I could die. I would get panic attacks so strong that it would take hours, days to come down from them. If I even could come down. I can say that I had a low key panic attack in the spring of 2017 for about half a year.

To me. Strong feelings are stupid.

Yet. Without strong feelings. We would not live in a society that is exactly the way it is. Trump tweeting away. Me and my wife living separately (but then again, would we have married either? probably not), me having changed due to my disease and so on.

The world would possibly something. Much more boring.

(It could be exciting too if people were not afraid of death and they would randomly venture under moving cars because they were not afraid of death! ;))

We would be more like computer programs running in these biological brains, more balanced, less likely to clash with each other.

Which is why it seems so silly that we are the way we are.

So why are we this way. Why are we so emotional.

Now imagine Siberian forests with saber tooth tigers.

Ten thousands years ago..  Saber tooth tiger "disappeared"

Go great great great.. grandpappy! :D (my stock comes from Siberia)

Our emotions were made to wipe out sabre tooth tigers. To take on other human clans. To fight. To love. To wildy take chances. To survive.

You take a humanbeing like that and damage their brain by giving them a thorn on their side (my epilepsy) that can kill them. Essentially giving you a saber tooth tiger in your own body and you have to come to terms with it. When you are kissed by death,
what do you do?

Will you be able to stand there. Not change?

No. Intelligence is all about adapting.

I began to talk of death a lot. I faced it every day. First, I tried not to think about it. I REALLY tried. I think that was the reason why I tried to not watch movies etc. Because they reminded me of my own life.

Furthermore mental illness often is a plot device that is exciting to normal people. To epileptics / anxiety sufferers, not so much.

But that did not work.

So in the next stage I began talking about death. Laughing in the face of it at times. Crying at others. I broke down. I wrote a song. "Making deals with God.":

https://anttismusic.blogspot.com/2015/08/deals-with-god-2015.html

https://soundclick.com/r/s88j4r

2019 version

https://soundclick.com/r/s7umob

2015 version..

(originally I wrote it in 2013 I think)

(weird how that song would fit my life in 2019)

The lyrics of which were about a relationship breaking down, but which had nothing to do with the real identity of it. Which was about me begrudgingly becoming more Christian because it was the ONLY way I could deal with these emotions.

Yes. I did that. I became extremely Christian. I began to pray all the time. "Talking to God" "Making Deals With God" Praying that I would be healed. .
Going to heaven if I die.

My ex HATED that song. Because she could hear what it was about too..

About my ENDLESS pain.

She was throwing herself all in to help me. But nothing could heal me. My distress would never end. I still carry it to this day.

But since my grand mals. When I understood, they come sudden and may kill me. With my Christian faith. I began to become comfortable with the thought of death.

After years of suffering, panic attacks, insomnia and so on.

Death actually began to become not so distressing option.

I began to realize that LIFE was the source of my pain. Not so much death. Sure the thought of death still shakes me. But at the same time. In a way I accept it. Even welcome it if it comes.

Especially now that I have no people REALLY depending on me being alive.

Death. What was supposed to give me pain.

Has started to give me some joy..

I guess this could lead to suicide idealization. But not really. I know it is
dirty rotten no good idiotic thought for now (I am not bad off enough, if I
were I would probably travel to a country that allows euthanasia (yes, I asked my doctor if I would be admitted)) . Since I have come to understand that it is coming one day anyway.

This trauma is redefining me as a person. It is shaping me into someone that most people who want to happily go about their lives in their shopping mall of choice, sipping their soy lattes. Would not like.

My thoughts are no longer defined by how I will be healed and how I will marry again and have a child and reach this and that.

I know I am a ill 46 your old man whose sole task is to survive this moment.

My joy now comes from black humor and church. From laughing at myself and my pain. Waiting on God.

I live in this moment as I am now, fighting what ever my disease is throwing at me on the moment.

But this trauma that has befallen me has cost me so much.

Do I wish that when I first got sick I would not have reacted as I did?

Yes. But now I know why I did. If you read this blog. You may know that I had a bi polar 2 disorder. Without knowing it.

I fell ill with cold pneumonia, it was not recognized. Instead..

Doctors prescribed me anti depressants that made me feel this trauma (super anxious). People with bi polar 2 can respond with extreme emotions to anti depressants. I was one of them. . That emotion was medicated with medicines that lower seizure threshold and either A gave me epilepsy or B boosted some slight epilepsy I had always had, but was not aware of.

One pill ruined my life.

Ever since it happened. I called it chemical trauma. My doctors did not believe me. Until about month and a half back.

But yes. I was given emotional trauma by a medication which ended up changing me as a person.

How would you heal trauma like this?

How would you heal the rift between Finland and Russia, Democrats and Republicans?

You carry it to your grave. Trying to stay peaceful, poised, civilized. You pray,
you write long articles, you process.  You try to accept your losses.

You try to re define the walls, re invent yourself, re build your ego after it has been smashed to pieces.

You change.

It is the only constant.

And a proof you are still alive.

Antti

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