This was incredibly difficult to write.
Firstly because the "defining moment" I describe in here, although an old buried memory is like something new and I still feel a deep pang of sadness when I reflect on it and the changes I underwent as a result of it.
Secondly because talking about this at all is still very new to me. Every time I do, I relive it as if I were right there. The physiological effects notwithstanding (very tensed muscles, headache, shoulder ache, pains in my legs etc - basically all the bits of me that got "broken") they are unpleasant memories (obviously) and I would much prefer NOT to think about them, even though I know I must, in order to heal.
Lastly, because my daughter came in half way through writing this. I've perfected the art of switching out of "flashback" into loving daddy, thanks to some tricks that my PTSD counsellor has taught me.
One of the most potent of these is two bottles of scent. 1 containing albas oil, the other containing my cologne (cartier - declaration).
The first, grabs my attention; making use of our primeval ability whereby smell seems to have a super highway in our brains. Apparently, smell was a very important part of human evolution!
This brings me out of the flashback and back to the "here and now"
The second is a soothing smell. Helps bring the threat response down, allowing my compassion (for myself and others) to flourish, where otherwise my drive and threat systems would choke it, like weeds.
I hope that talking about this helps someone out there who is going through or has gone similar problems.