Posted on 30th January 2017

Time to reflect on my healing. 50 months off Benzos and so much better although sometimes the waves still emerge out of the blue and put me back in chains again. I can't measure my journey in percentages as some do as it's gets far too complicated; 100% healed one day and only 50% the next, such is my healing pattern.

I've been lying in bed this morning contemplating how far I've come now. I've just slept for eight hours with one wake up. Unheard of only a few weeks ago. This is not yet the norm and can still give way to sleepless nights but it happens and is so fantastic. On these nights I feel I'm lying in a cuddly blanket of relaxation and warmth with nothing but good dreams and total peace. Once this is consistent I believe I will be healed. The physical symptoms of pain, tingling, tachycardia and stomach issues appear to have completely let go. I say 'appear to' as I'm ever aware things can deteriorate for a long time yet and I mustn't become complacent. With the mental stuff I do still get the brain fog and become very tired and lethargic. Again, this isn't consistent just variable on a daily basis. My cognition has improved and I'm managing the Saturday, Telegraph cryptic crossword in a faster time but sometimes the harder Sudokus will still defeat me! My short term memory is a bit hazy but mostly that's improving as well.

I'm hoping I will fully heal back to my pre benzo state, whatever that was. After such a long time suffering their effects on my brain it's really impossible to tell how I felt before I was drugged by an unknowledgeable medical profession in the 1970s. I know I was given them for insomnia and that's probably my biggest issue now alongside the anxiety reactions. I wonder if I will actually be able to tell when I'm fully healed or if it's something that's just creeping up on me slowly waiting to pounce, I really hope so. I know I will always keep going, live to my best in the present moment and keep incorporating all the healing practices I've learnt to help my fragile nervous system. Dare I say I'm proud of myself for how far I've come even if not fully there at the moment.

Nobody can contemplate the suffering we go through in this unless they've been there for themselves. I stopped trying to explain to others a long time ago but those of us who have suffered know that our bodies become the worst torture chambers imaginable and there is absolutely no way we can control the horror except through acceptance and not fighting it. If we die in the process, so be it, we lose any fear of death and would welcome the release at the worst times. Our brains have been damaged. We may as well have had a major stroke which would explain the many bedridden days some have to endure with limbs that refuse to respond and a brain that's unable to function except by removing itself from the body and becoming detached. It's truly a living death. It's a brutal process, if we're not believed then so be it. We will emerge stronger and wiser for the experience so everyone insists.

Time moves on and slowly takes with it the worst of my suffering. Layer by layer everything is healing and bringing me to a new place. It becomes hard to remember the acute episodes as life begins to take on a new meaning. I don't think there's any post traumatic shock or adrenal fatigue although I know some believe these are the reasons for a protracted recovery. For me, I just think that my brain has a lot of new learning to take on board free from from the decades of prescription drug control. It has to adapt to its new neural pathways and above all, learn to release the trauma and let the associated high level of anxiety calm to a more normal, acceptable level.
All is well and on track towards my final healthy and happy destination.

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