Sam De Silva shares his first-hand accounts of trauma.
I started writing this post a few weeks ago, before being compelled to write my last post regarding the Mind Charity‘s alteration to their police info page.
I’ve left what I initially wrote unchanged. I only completed the last few paragraphs the day before yesterday, while waiting for my visa to be processed at the Laos border.
The past week has been pretty rough. I found prepping for and writing my last post about what happened at Fulham Police station emotionally draining. Even though it was to be expected considering the subject matter, it hit me a lot harder than I thought it would.
It became trauma triggering, it almost got to the point where I almost gave up, and I seriously considered deleting the entire blog as well as all its associated @ptsdjedi social media accounts.
I drafted an epic length post to lay the foundations of how I will approach documenting my experience of UK mental health policing over the next year or so. In the end, I decided to only post the introduction of what I had written as an individual post, as part of the series.
I was sick of thinking about it, I couldn’t escape. I literally could not sleep for a couple of days, the chronic back pain returned. I was affected physically as well as on a emotional level.
I know it’s a bit of a cop out not posting all I wrote, but this way it gives me more time to process what I need to do on a subconscious level, without throwing myself in the deep end, so to speak. I know how important it is, especially considering the amount of evidence I have. I just need a little more time, before going back to the darkest place in my life…
Apart from explaining why I didn’t document more in my last post, I wanted to write this post for my readers to help better access some the content on my blog.
As I have absolutely no writing background, it’s taken some time for it to sink in, but I’ve been told repeatedly that I have some powerfully written accounts of first-hand trauma, most of which were written years ago, during my PTSD treatment at CADAT/NHS Maudsley.
I’d like to introduce a selection of my posts that I personally feel are some of my most powerful pieces of writing. In fact, one of the posts that I’m going to introduce I’ve honestly never been able to re-read without at least shedding a tear or two.
Obviously, the idea is not to traumatise you, but rather to give you some honest insight into real first hand accounts of first responder natural disaster trauma, and how that affected me years later, post trauma.
- The first of the posts I’d like to introduce is the narrative of the triggering event which led me to start this blog, and in turn have an active presence on social media. To give you some context in terms of time frame this happened 9 years after the Asian Tsunami and approximately a month after returning to Koh Phi Phi island for the first time since being caught in the Asian Tsunami.
- The second post, I think best describes the on set of symptoms of post-trauma. It was the first time I had ever experienced such symptoms, and the first serious flashback I couldn’t control my reactions. I terms of the time line, this happened 10 years ago about 30 hours after the two waves of the Asian Tsunami tore through Koh Phi Phi island.
- The last post that I’d like to introduce is best described by my editor at The Good Men Project, Wilhelm Cortez:
“One of the most powerful descriptions of the opening moments of disaster and trauma that I have ever read. Each time I read this the emotional flood hits me.”
- In terms of time line, this happened around 10:29am on the 26th December 2004 as the first of the two waves of the Boxing Day Asian Tsunami tore through Koh Phi Phi island.
This article originally appeared on ptsdjedi.com