Attack of the Lizard Brain

NOTE: This was originally posted as a status to my Facebook timeline.

So let me talk a bit about my “feeling sad” post last night.

15135761_10210562824522251_4675753185759199917_nPTSD has a few but broad-reaching effects. One of those, perhaps one of the worst, is a disproportionate emotional response to an otherwise simple stimulus. The psychologists and those more educated in matters of the mind on my friends list can feel free to correct me, but it’s always what we call the negative emotions (though I don’t believe any are really negative until we give them that weight). This is because the amygdala, what I call the lizard brain, has become hypersensitive to perceived threats. Fight or flight, and all that jazz. As often as not it’s just roll-into-a-ball-of-mushy-goo-in-the-corner.

I have nicknamed my lizard brain Amy. Thank you, Cody Todd 😀

Threats come in all shapes and sizes, though, not all to life or limb. Last night I had one of these reactions to something really insignificant and completely innocent and wound up crying myself to sleep.

It’s all good this morning. Amy’s relaxed and I’m sipping a nice cinnamon latte.

Understanding of the effects and that they can be caused by what seems to be nothing at all is important though, and for the person suffering from PTSD as much as those around them. Up in the penthouse of my human brain I knew exactly what was happening. That knowledge, though, did little to stop it. When Amy really wants something, Amy tends to get it. I did, however, know it would go away and to not allow myself to give it any more importance than it had in the moment.

Thanks everyone for reaching out. That was so very much appreciated.

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