PTSD

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Mary Kay
Posts: 1475
Joined: September 23rd, 2011, 10:57 am
Location: Oak View, CA

PTSD

Post by Mary Kay » November 26th, 2014, 6:47 pm

So as I am sitting here in the peace and quiet, counting my blessings I decided that I would share a little story about my experience with PTSD. The reason for this, is because I learned a lot more about it this last year and I thought I would pass it along in case it helps anyone else.

What I learned is that the stress from traumas over the years can build on each other. In the last 3 or 4 years at school I have had some experiences that we extremely stressful. Without going into unnecessary detail all I will say is that it was really over the top of normal teacher stress which is pretty high to begin with. I've been taking anti-depressants for quite a few years so I normally go to a psychiatrist about every 6 months for eval on the medications.
The same year i learned about my heart condition and had my inappropriate shock was the same year that I had to report a teacher to the District which also involved the police. It was a horrible year. Last teaching year I had a class with unusual problems that I won't go into except to say that there was no support from administration and it involved a student who was a danger to other students and had injured faculty as well. I started to have nightly anxiety dreams about school, was feeling heart palpitations many times a day and started to feel that I was not in total control of my emotions. During this time I had been seeing the psychiatrist on a more frequent basis and he knew all the details. One day I had really had it and I thought that I would ask him if I could qualify for a stress leave. I expected him to say no, however he was writing the note almost before I finished the question. He diagnosed me with PTSD. I was surprised. But then I learned about some of the symptoms, which includes uncontrollable intrusive thoughts, which I was having. My mind was going back to memories of some childhood traumas over and over. I wouldn't have thought that just the inappropriate shock storm would be enough to cause it but as I learned, old traumas can add up and the symptoms of PTSD can manifest well after the event or events.
I took off from February to the end of the school year and I am now at a different school. It wasn't until I had been away from it all for a couple of months that I realized how much I really needed the break. I am not happy about it and resist feeling "fragile" but I am moving along nicely now.
So, I guess I am saying that PTSD comes in many forms and no one should be afraid of getting counseling when you feel depressed or anxious or just not quite right.

Now this is where I am counting on my favorite people to jump in and make fun.
CHF, Cardiomyopathy and LBBB
EF 20%
St. Jude Bi Vent ICD CRT implanted September 9, 2011
7 shock storm inappropriate due to dislodged lead
damaged lead removed and replaced Sept 26, 2011
EF improved to 50% in December 2012
Carvedilol 12.5 mg 2x
Ramipril 5 mg 2x

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freckles1880
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Re: PTSD

Post by freckles1880 » November 26th, 2014, 6:54 pm

I am glad you posted this. I think many more of us have PTSD than admit it and are having issues they need resolved. The way you are doing so seems to be helping and I hope you continue to feel better.
"Outside" (non heart caused) stress may not be the original cause of our conditions but it sure does make them worse. We just need to recognize it and get help if needed.

:hugg:

wavhi
Bob

Medtronic-Visia AF implanted 7-8-2016 stayed with the with 6947 Sprint Quattro Secure lead. Original ICD implant 2-4-2009. ICD turned off 10-6-17 as stage 4 lung cancer taking over.
Major heart attack, carcinogenic shock and quad bypass 10-13-08 post myocardial infarction, old inferior MI complicated by shock and CHF, combined, Atherosclerosis, abdominal aortic Aneurysm, Seroma 7 cm, left leg. Stent in the left main vein 10-7-2014

My "Wardens" are my bride of 54+ years and my daughters.

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Colin Pearson
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Location: Berkshire England

Re: PTSD

Post by Colin Pearson » November 26th, 2014, 7:24 pm

No fun to be made by me.

Thanks for sharing and that anxiety, panic & PTSD is a real bugger if it gets hold of you. I know all too well.

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Ozchrissy
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Joined: September 27th, 2008, 9:28 am
Location: Australian

Re: PTSD

Post by Ozchrissy » November 26th, 2014, 11:03 pm

Mary Kay, I have PTSD also, was diagnosed with it after the Police Force, I also faced circumstances above and beyond. I have lived with it for years, and manage to keep a handle on it most of the time. But, as my recent escapades have indicated, I do loose it when things just build up too much. I accept this now, and normally try to avoid circumstances that I know will trigger a panic attack, but life is unpredictable and I have to be very aware. I know I am vulnerable in certain situations, and especially the last few months with my health, have really had to battle to stay on an even keel.

I am not ashamed of it at all, if it wasn't me who dealt with the situations I faced, then someone else would have had to. It has made me a stronger person in the long run, and I am sure more aware of who I am.

Bob, I also believe that stress played a large role in my health issues, but there is not enough medical research in this area to back it up. I don't know about you, but I got no on the job counselling or support with situations, except to go to the local club and get drunk with my co-workers. That was our debriefing. I know circumstances have changed over here slightly now, but I still believe we have a long way to go before we are able to fully address the issues of PTSD successfully. Our servicemen, police, teachers, ambulance drivers and all others that are in the frontline of our society and its problems, all need to be counselled regularly and given all the support they need.

As you know my daughter is a school teacher, and she has had some pretty disturbing incidents with her special needs children, I have found myself being the "debriefer", as there doesn't seem to be a lot of that going on in some of the schools here.
“I am not what happened to me, I am what I choose to become.” Carl Jung

Diagnosed with cardiomyopathy in 10/99
LBBB & VT diagnosed Feb 06
Guidant Biventricular Pacer ICD inserted Feb 06: Boston Scientific Incepta CRT-D inserted May, 2012
Oesophageal Cancer, 2012, Gall Bladder & Septicemia 2014 resulting in VFib and severe heart damage
Bare Metal Stent May, 2012 Mitral Valve replaced 2015
Meds: Entresto, Bicard, Coralan, Eurtorxsiq, Frusehexl, Spiractin, Sigmaxin, Creon, Warfarin,
Appropriate Shocks for Ventricular VFib.

Mary Kay
Posts: 1475
Joined: September 23rd, 2011, 10:57 am
Location: Oak View, CA

Re: PTSD

Post by Mary Kay » November 28th, 2014, 5:12 pm

Thank you all.
Chrissy, your daughter must have great patience. It is the lack of support that makes it so hard. Too often we are left to fend for ourselves. The principal at my new school, I think would have handled last years situation much differently based on how he has been handling similar situations here.
CHF, Cardiomyopathy and LBBB
EF 20%
St. Jude Bi Vent ICD CRT implanted September 9, 2011
7 shock storm inappropriate due to dislodged lead
damaged lead removed and replaced Sept 26, 2011
EF improved to 50% in December 2012
Carvedilol 12.5 mg 2x
Ramipril 5 mg 2x

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TruckerRon
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Location: Provo, UT

Re: PTSD

Post by TruckerRon » November 29th, 2014, 1:17 pm

I doubt I'd have made it this far without seeing my counselor every few weeks. With his guidance I've managed to hold my "episodes" to a minimum by developing some mental discipline to avoid my triggers. He costs more than pills, but has fewer side effects.
TruckerRon -- Received Minion I on 17 Sep 2009, Minion II on 26 Jan 2015

Non-ischemic cardiomyopathy
Medtronic Viva XT CRT-D
No shocks yet...
My intro is at: http://www.icdsupportgroup.org/board/vi ... 099#p57099

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ROBO Pop
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Location: the Oval Office

Re: PTSD

Post by ROBO Pop » November 29th, 2014, 2:51 pm

My wife has long been a player in the educational system, and my biggest stressor is thinking about the risk she runs daily at the school district offices. With so many misunderstood honor students in the system, not to mention the doting parents, it's no wonder they named it "Parent Teacher Stress Disorder". I've been through much in my lifetime, and yet when I look back, nothing compares to what educators deal with during their careers. Take care of yourself and don't worry what others think, enjoy some leisure time.
Broken Heart
Nobody has ever survived life, but I'm trying...
My story and sticking to it
http://www.icdsupportgroup.org/board/vi ... 97&p=91375

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Ozchrissy
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Joined: September 27th, 2008, 9:28 am
Location: Australian

Re: PTSD

Post by Ozchrissy » November 29th, 2014, 7:27 pm

Mary Kay, it is a very real dilemma with these children. As Lauren sees it is the "Autism" or their disorder that is causing the issues or violence, not the child, but that still does not take away the personal threat or actual injury assault that she has experienced. Lauren was taken to hospital on one occasion as a result of a child becoming violent, and when she came back to the school, (not in this state or current school) her Vice Principal who was not special ed trained told her to "Toughen up Princess". Mind you issues with this child had been ongoing for the whole school year. My Lauren thankfully is of the new breed of teachers over here, and had no hesitation to going to her Union, and the School were counselled about how they need to treat their teachers and as a result of this Lauren was supported. The attitude of the school also was more cautious towards these incidents. Luckily she has not encountered another student like this one down here, but she still deals on a daily basis with troublesome children because of her training. She is in a mainstream school at the moment, but deals regularly with the 'special' children within the school community. The constant awareness that she must maintain with these children all day at school takes a large mental toll on her, I could not imagine doing what you do Mary Kay or what Lauren does, even though I have faced some dangerous situations myself. It takes a very special person to do your job, and I value and admire each and every one of you.
“I am not what happened to me, I am what I choose to become.” Carl Jung

Diagnosed with cardiomyopathy in 10/99
LBBB & VT diagnosed Feb 06
Guidant Biventricular Pacer ICD inserted Feb 06: Boston Scientific Incepta CRT-D inserted May, 2012
Oesophageal Cancer, 2012, Gall Bladder & Septicemia 2014 resulting in VFib and severe heart damage
Bare Metal Stent May, 2012 Mitral Valve replaced 2015
Meds: Entresto, Bicard, Coralan, Eurtorxsiq, Frusehexl, Spiractin, Sigmaxin, Creon, Warfarin,
Appropriate Shocks for Ventricular VFib.

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4EverHopeful
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Joined: January 27th, 2012, 11:34 pm
Location: Knotts Island, NC USA

Re: PTSD

Post by 4EverHopeful » November 29th, 2014, 9:47 pm

Mary Kay wrote: I wouldn't have thought that just the inappropriate shock storm would be enough to cause it but as I learned, old traumas can add up and the symptoms of PTSD can manifest well after the event or events.
Mary Kay thank you for sharing your experience. Your right about PTSD raising it's ugly head well after an event. My husband still suffers from PTSD six years now after his accident. One day at work he fell 35ft. After many surgeries he insisted on going back to work only 1 1/2 months after fall. The doctors said it was too early but reluctantly agreed.

His PTSD did not manifest itself until 18 months later. He was surprised when his doctor gave him that diagnoses. He thought that it was only soldiers and such who have it. He felt in no way had he experienced what some of them have, there was no comparison in his mind. None the less, 2 1/2 yrs after fall he has been permanently taken out of work because of the PTSD. He has been in chronic pain since accident. His doctor says that as long as he is in chronic pain he will continue to have it. I guess maybe it's a constant reminder of what happened that day. Through his doctors and medications, he has learned to manage it as best as he can, but it's been a life changer for sure.

To this day, I have to keep an eye on him when we sleep for he has some bad nights with nightmares, yelling, thrashing around, hurting me a few times and even throwing himself out of bed several times. Amazingly we have both learned to live with it and do not let it dampen our lifestyle. There are some things now we have to do differently, but regardless, life is still a blessing!!
Phyllis

God's prescription for the heart:
O LORD, You have examined my heart and know everything about me. You know when I sit
down or stand up. You know my every thought when far away. You chart the path ahead of me
and tell me where to stop and rest. Every moment You know where I am.
Psalm 139:1-3

Non-ischemic DCM 09/11
PVCs, LBBB, leaky mitral valve
St Judes CRT-D (Bubba) 02/12; (Bubba II) 09/17
EF 20% 09/11; 25% 07/12; 35% 02/16
Failed PVC Ablation 11/12
Coreg, Zestril, Asprin, Aldactone, Lasix, Zocor, Levothroid
viewtopic.php?p=87649#p87649

Mary Kay
Posts: 1475
Joined: September 23rd, 2011, 10:57 am
Location: Oak View, CA

Re: PTSD

Post by Mary Kay » March 9th, 2015, 10:45 pm

This below is my statement regarding my diagnosis with PTSD last year. There are a few things I'd like to point out that I learned from this the mental intrusive and uncontrollable slide show of past traumas. I don't have flash backs on my shock storm. Loosing control of my emotions and over reacting to stressful situations. The constant fear of loosing control. I experienced a lot of loss as a child and went to a lot of funerals of young friends and there was no one to help me through it. There wasn't that kind of help in those days for most people, let alone children. It wasn't until I was off work for a month or so that I realized how messed up I was. When I started school again this year I experienced an emotional set back from being back in the environment that trigged the PTSD in the first place. The year before my unexpected heart news a young man renting a room in my house was found dead by my friend who came to feed my cats when I was out of town.
Robo, I love you but this comes down to the meaning behind the expression about walking a mile in someone's shoes. Some handle these things better than others and it depends on what other traumas you've had in your life. I was just told by my shrink that I am still healing and fragile, that word again, and he increased my meds again. This isn't something I talk to people about. I let them all assume that my medical leave was more about my heart.

[quote="Mary Kay"]So as I am sitting here in the peace and quiet, counting my blessings I decided that I would share a little story about my experience with PTSD. The reason for this, is because I learned a lot more about it this last year and I thought I would pass it along in case it helps anyone else.

What I learned is that the stress from traumas over the years can build on each other. In the last 3 or 4 years at school I have had some experiences that we extremely stressful. Without going into unnecessary detail all I will say is that it was really over the top of normal teacher stress which is pretty high to begin with. I've been taking anti-depressants for quite a few years so I normally go to a psychiatrist about every 6 months for eval on the medications.
The same year i learned about my heart condition and had my inappropriate shock was the same year that I had to report a teacher to the District which also involved the police. It was a horrible year. Last teaching year I had a class with unusual problems that I won't go into except to say that there was no support from administration and it involved a student who was a danger to other students and had injured faculty as well. I started to have nightly anxiety dreams about school, was feeling heart palpitations many times a day and started to feel that I was not in total control of my emotions. During this time I had been seeing the psychiatrist on a more frequent basis and he knew all the details. One day I had really had it and I thought that I would ask him if I could qualify for a stress leave. I expected him to say no, however he was writing the note almost before I finished the question. He diagnosed me with PTSD. I was surprised. But then I learned about some of the symptoms, which includes uncontrollable intrusive thoughts, which I was having. My mind was going back to memories of some childhood traumas over and over. I wouldn't have thought that just the inappropriate shock storm would be enough to cause it but as I learned, old traumas can add up and the symptoms of PTSD can manifest well after the event or events.
I took off from February to the end of the school year and I am now at a different school. It wasn't until I had been away from it all for a couple of months that I realized how much I really needed the break. I am not happy about it and resist feeling "fragile" but I am moving along nicely now.
So, I guess I am saying that PTSD comes in many forms and no one should be afraid of getting counseling when you feel depressed or anxious or just not quite right.
CHF, Cardiomyopathy and LBBB
EF 20%
St. Jude Bi Vent ICD CRT implanted September 9, 2011
7 shock storm inappropriate due to dislodged lead
damaged lead removed and replaced Sept 26, 2011
EF improved to 50% in December 2012
Carvedilol 12.5 mg 2x
Ramipril 5 mg 2x

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freckles1880
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Posts: 8664
Joined: April 18th, 2009, 7:19 pm
Location: Broomfield, Colorado

Re: PTSD

Post by freckles1880 » March 10th, 2015, 7:31 am

Right on Mary Kay!! I really did not think we had the "non-believers". I believe PTSD is like many other medical issues. It is very real to those who have it and is misunderstood by many who don't.

:hugg:

wavhi
Bob

Medtronic-Visia AF implanted 7-8-2016 stayed with the with 6947 Sprint Quattro Secure lead. Original ICD implant 2-4-2009. ICD turned off 10-6-17 as stage 4 lung cancer taking over.
Major heart attack, carcinogenic shock and quad bypass 10-13-08 post myocardial infarction, old inferior MI complicated by shock and CHF, combined, Atherosclerosis, abdominal aortic Aneurysm, Seroma 7 cm, left leg. Stent in the left main vein 10-7-2014

My "Wardens" are my bride of 54+ years and my daughters.

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mykidsmom
Posts: 4058
Joined: February 9th, 2012, 5:09 pm

Re: PTSD

Post by mykidsmom » March 10th, 2015, 9:25 am

So happy to hear things are much improved on last year Mary Kay.......teaching is not for the weak kneed is it......there are so many things now that teachers have to contend with that would have been unheard of in my time.....the helicopter parenting approach being a huge issue......so it becomes a catch 22 with teaching kids, dealing with parents and abiding by school regulations, your sorta damned if you do and damned if you dont...i think it was the best thing ever to get the couple of months off on stress leave....and im glad too that theres help available for PTSD......since our christmas from hell two of my kids are heading for help and they really need it......so far willie seems to be ok...but from past experience i know he'll crash eventually......Im just too busy or too stupid to acknowledge i have issues too.....so im expecting one day to crash and crash badly..............

Good luck...... :hugg:
I think.....Therefore I am.!!!!!

Mary Kay
Posts: 1475
Joined: September 23rd, 2011, 10:57 am
Location: Oak View, CA

Re: PTSD

Post by Mary Kay » March 10th, 2015, 9:25 pm

Helen,
Why are you waiting and not seeking some kind of proper support? You deserve it!!!!!
CHF, Cardiomyopathy and LBBB
EF 20%
St. Jude Bi Vent ICD CRT implanted September 9, 2011
7 shock storm inappropriate due to dislodged lead
damaged lead removed and replaced Sept 26, 2011
EF improved to 50% in December 2012
Carvedilol 12.5 mg 2x
Ramipril 5 mg 2x

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