Friday, November 12, 2010

Chiropratic for the Neural Pathways

It's been a while since my last post. In that time I have been seeing a therapist for my PTSD. We have done EMDR; Eye Movement Desensitization and Retraining.

Never heard of it until one day while engineering a talk show on psychology. The guest was talking about EMDR and PTSD. We were talking during the break about Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and how it wasn't/didn't seem to help. The host asked me point blankly if I'd "been cured" of my PTSD. I said, "Hell NO!" He just smiled and we went back into the show.

It has been my understanding that you cannot cure PTSD. You just deal with it. Live with it. Try to minimize its effects over time. Turns out, I was partially wrong. With EMDR, my brain can be "retrained" in how it responds to certain stimuli. On a scale of 1 to 10 where 10 is the most intense reaction, I can respond with a level 2 after EMDR.

Since no one can really explain the "why" or "how" just that it works I simply refer to it as Chiropractic for the Neural Pathways since what the EMDR Therapy does is re-arrange the neural pathways where the memories of the trauma occur. Instead of being all twisted and out of whack and subject to any disruption, the EMDR therapy "straightens them out" allowing the body to not over-react to stimuli. Good for me!

After my second session I was driving home and noticed thunderclouds over the mountains to the north. Normally I would start to feel an anxiety attack come on and feel very warm and insecure. That day I actually thought, "Look at those cool clouds!" Something I hadn't said since January of 2008 when I nearly crashed after I inadvertently flew into a thunderstorm.

Now I respond with a Level 2 instead of a Level 10. So can suck it. While I wouldn't say I'm "cured" I am much more able to continue in my chosen profession, aviation, much better than I ever could in the last 2 1/2 years.

See ya PTSD...
See ya Anxiety attacks...
See ya sleepless nights...
See ya nightmares...

Hello confidence...nice to see you again!