Posted in Blog or Stories, Inspirational, Medical

False Memories & PTSD

Post Traumatic Stress Syndrom can attack a person’s mind without warning. High-stress jobs, childhood trauma, or traumatic injury can all lead to PTSD.  I want to talk a little about false memories.  I suffered from PTSD as a  high functioning schizophrenic and bipolar disorders person in my early 30’s. I also had dissociative identity disorder.  As part of my delusions, I had moments where I had thought something was true and could logically explain it or justify my stinking thinking with almost scientific clarity.

On one particular occasion, I had convinced myself that my father had actually murdered someone and disposed of the body in the quicksand bogs of an area river/lake backwater area in Oklahoma.  It took a lot of counseling to convince me that it was a false memory projected by my fathers’ behavior towards my mother.  You see, my father took me to an area where quicksand was available, only I didn’t know it. We were walking a trail over the river banks and I took a misstep and was in quicksand.  It wasn’t very wide of a section on the surface. I couldn’t lift myself out and got to my knee/thigh area before my father finally gave the gun butt of the rifle to pull me out of it.  I was justifiably scared for a few moments. A while later my father took me back to the same location where I had stepped off and there was a deep chasm in the ground that was hollowed out and a deer skeleton was in the bottom. He told me that if I didn’t tow the line that could be my mom there instead. True story.

False memories usually have a small basis in fact. As recently, evidenced in the political arena of Dr. Ford and Judge Kavanaugh.  I have no dought that Dr. Ford experienced some type of trauma at some point in her life. She is suffering from PTSD in my opinion and perhaps false memories.  Some things occurred and her mind tried to make sense of it.  It put two and two together and it made sense to her, and she kept remembering more and more details that were available in her subconsciousness until she felt she figured it out.  The only problem with false memories is they can’t hold up under intense scrutiny.  (I am not a political person, I am using them as an example of what can occur not as a factor or supposition of events).

Another incident from my mind was about my son-in-law Wayne (he’s dead now). But when he married my daughter at her age of 19 yrs and he was 59 yrs old.  I had an awful dream about him. And I recalled it and kept re-dreaming the scenario. I then began thinking about it during waking moments, and pieces started falling into place in my mind. Within a few weeks, my behavior changed towards him, I was suspicious of his motives and convinced her was mistreating my daughter.  It took a lot of talk-therapy to convince me that it was false dreams based upon my anxiety of my daughters’ marriage. I felt out-of-control.  I took real memories and twisted them in my mind like a sinister plot.  If anyone had taken me seriously I would have destroyed his teaching career and possibly life. Luckily, I was in deep psychiatric almost daily couseling with a trained therapist who recognized what was happening.  I could be quiet persuasive in my mindset of righteous indignation. I don’t remember if I told my daughter about my suspicions and theories, but I do remember getting to the truth and being set free of the stinking thinking towards him. My fears and false memories could not stand up to empirical evidence.  All I’m saying is that false-memories are real to the person experiencing them.  They could pass a polygraph test because in their mind the incidents make sense and therefore are true.

If you are suffering. There is help available without stigma. Just reach out to your local health department or  2-1-1 operator and tell them you need to see a psychiatrist and/or psychologist. Counseling can be very expensive if you don’t have medical insurance or sometimes even with it, but there are places that offer cash discounts or sliding-scale fees. I do not have a list but you could check with religious affiliates like Catholic Charities for assistance. If you are enduring PTSD and False Memories, remember it is not your fault. You didn’t ask for this to happen to you- it just did. But you have to take responsibility for getting well and asking for help, you can’t do it alone.

If your reading this blog and feel hopeless, helpless, unworthy of help, or any negative feelings of diminished capacity then reach out to someone, even if it is going voluntarily to a psych ward of the hospital (go through Emergency Room) for a few days or calling 9-1-1 to get help, don’t suffer in silence or kill yourself.  Depression and PTSD often go hand-in-hand and are untreated or undertreated a professional can help you.

END

The following can be viewed at https://www.psychguides.com/guides/ptsd-post-traumatic-stress-disorder/

PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder)
Estimates suggest that up to 70 percent of American adults have experienced at least one significant trauma during their lifetimes. Many of those people may subsequently have suffered from an emotional reaction known as posttraumatic stress disorder or PTSD. Further estimates suggest that 5 percent of the population currently lives with PTSD.

What Is PTSD?
Posttraumatic stress disorder occurs in some cases when people are exposed to a very stressful event, which is known as an extreme stress trigger. To be diagnosed with PTSD, they must continue to experience symptoms of PTSD for at least one month after exposure to this trigger.

Who Experiences PTSD?
Although women are twice as likely as men to develop PTSD, anyone who experiences an extremely traumatic event may develop a post-traumatic stress disorder. Examples of extreme stress triggers include:

Criminal assault or rape
Natural disasters
Serious accidents
Combat exposure
Child physical or sexual abuse or severe neglect
Witnessing traumatic events
Imprisonment/hostage/displacement as refugees
Torture
The sudden unexpected death of loved ones
Although other types of stress may be severe and can be quite upsetting, they typically do not result in PTSD. Such events might include the death of an elderly parent, divorce, or job loss.

What Are the Symptoms of PTSD?
People living with PTSD typically experience three main types of symptoms. First, they may re-experience the traumatic event that led to developing PTSD. This can include:

Flashbacks in which they feel that the triggering event is recurring even while they are awake
Distressing recollections of the traumatic event
Nightmares of the event
Exaggerated physical and emotional reactions to triggers that remind them of the event
The second type of symptom involves emotional numbing or even avoidance. It may include the following symptoms or behaviors:

Avoidance of places, thoughts, activities, conversations, and feelings related to the event or trauma
Feelings of detachment
Loss of interest
Restricted emotions
The third symptom type relates to increased arousal related to the event and may be indicated by:

Outbursts of anger
Irritability
Difficulty sleeping
Hypervigilance
Difficulty concentrating
Exaggerated startle responses

Posted in Inspirational, Medical

The crucifix of our body

Jesus Christ is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. He is before all things, and in him, all things hold together. 1 Colossians 1:15-17.

When we look at the vast universe, ever expanding with galaxies, stars, asteroids, comets, planets, and other heavenly bodies we are amazed at Gods creations.  Are we no less amazed at the creations on earth?  Have you ever wondered what the glue was that held our skin on our bodies, muscles and ligaments, nerves and cells together? I found out today in church that the glue is a protein molecule named Laminin. What is unique about this protein is the shape it takes on itself.  It is a crucifix, a symbol of the cross of biblical days of capital punishment. It is also in the heavens known as the Crux Constellation.  God gave us this symbol hidden in our bodies to the naked eye (invisible) yet providing an essential function within our bodies, notwithstanding, if we did not have this miracle protein we would not exist as human beings.

Since God created mankind we have yet to fully understand all the molecular and electrical fields of our brains and consciousness though we have made great strides in both areas of study.  Why did God create the Laminin in the shape of a cross? I think it is so that we humans can be amazed by science and prompted to theologize the significance of finding something so small to be of great worth.  Just like discovering the Crux Constellation is a reminder of the crucifix- a symbol that God created the heavens and the earth.

 

Image result for laminin

Laminin – Wikipedia
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laminin
Laminins are high-molecular-weight (~400 to ~900 kDa) proteins of the extracellular matrix. They are a major component of the basal lamina (one of the layers of the basement membrane), a protein network foundation for most cells and organs.

InterPro: IPR009254   Symbol: Laminin_I
Pfam: PF06008
Function · Pathology · Use in cell culture · Laminin domains

The Crux Constellation

Image result for crux constellation origin

 

 

 

 

Posted in Blog or Stories, Medical

Two Chin Man

When I was six, we went to visit Aunt Hazel in Anniston, Alabama. Her daughter Martha Louise had just married a Child Psychiatrist and the groom wanted to evaluate all of us children. My brother went in first and came back out and said that the doctor had double chins. My sister went in and also came back telling me that the doctor had two chins. Curious as I was, I began to ask questions. Does the doctor have two mouths? Does the doctor have two noes above the two chins or are they side by side? How does he eat with two chins? Does it hurt to have two chins? My brother and sister kept answering my questions until finally, it was my turn to see the doctor.

I went in and was told to sit in this huge leather chair.  I was fixated on looking at the doctor for his two chins. To my disappointment, I didn’t see two chins, or a double chin, or two mouths. I squint my eyes and tried to see if I had missed something that would let me see his two chins.

But, he only had one nose and this huge hole in his chin that looked like an actor Kirk Douglas on T.V. I don’t remember any questions the doctor asked me, he had me draw some pictures and color the pre-drawn picture which was a little fun. When I went back to my sister and brother, I replied with chagrin, “you guys are crazy, the doctor doesn’t have two chins!” They broke out into hysterical laughter.

Kat Challis

 

Posted in Medical

When germs are out to get you…

Are we just a little paranoid about germs?

We have two people in the house with autoimmune disorders. My daughters work with students with autoimmune disorders and are exposed all the time to the nasty little germs. So we commit Lysolacide on the little buggers.  We start from the top of the wall and work downwards covering all surfaces with a mist of disinfectant. This is a monthly routine as it seems someone always is fighting allergies, a cold, flu, or worse; right now it is strep x3. They are banished upstairs with their germs and the downstairs has been degermed for the moment.

Washing hands, using hand sanitizer between washings, Clorox wipes are our friend.  And I always carry Kleenex. And when that doesn’t cut it the Lysol and bleach do.

We eat healthily and take multiple vitamins daily. We have a team of doctors who coordinate our care when germs slip through our disinfectant net. Really; a pulmonologist, cardiologist, orthopedic surgeon, eye specialists, dentists, psychiatrist, neurologist, physical, occupational, and speech therapist, and primary care physician makes us sound like hypochondriacs. The doctors love to see us coming “Ca-Ching!” money in the bank. But the little bugger germs don’t get a good stronghold on us.

lol/Kat

 

 

 

 

Posted in Medical

Fun Facts about LLAMAS

Chapter 5 Quick Facts about Llamas see Picture and Key

quick llama facts

QUICK facts about Llama’s

Names of llama body parts: 1 Ears – 2 Poll – 3 Withers – 4 Back – 5 Hip – 6 Croup – 7 Base of tail – 8 Tail – 9 Buttock – 10 Hock – 11 Metatarsal gland – 12 Heel – 13 Cannon bone – 14 Gaskin – 15 Stifle joint – 16 Flank – 17 Barrel – 18 Elbow – 19 Pastern – 20 Fetlcok – 21 Knee – 22 Chest – 23 Point of shoulder – 24 Shoulder – 25 Throat – 26 cheek or jowl – 27 Muzzle

Note: The term camel is also used more broadly to describe any of the six camel-like creatures in the family Camelidae: the two true camels, and the four South American camelids, the llama, alpaca, guanaco, and vicu

ve:

The Science Connection

A Llama’s Body

Commonly unknown, llamas do not have eyelashes. However, their cousin the alpaca do.
The ears are rather long and slightly curved inward, characteristically known as “banana” shaped.
There is no (dorsal) back hump.
Feet are narrow, the toes being more separated than in the camels, each having a distinct plantar pad.
The tail is short
(Hair) Fiber is long, woolly and soft.
They have three stomach compartments, which means they eat a lot of food.
They graze on grass; eat Feed made up of protein, wheat, rye, corn. They love coastal hay, Alfalfa hay, and carrots. They also like horse treats.
Babies are known as Crias

A cria (pronounced Cree-ah) is the name for a baby llama
Crias are typically born with the whole herd gathering around in an attempt to protect against potential predators.
Most births take place between 8 a.m. and noon, during the relatively warmer daylight hours.
Crias are up and standing, walking and attempting to nurse within the first hour after birth.
Behavior
Llamas which are well-socialized and trained to halter and lead after weaning is very friendly and pleasant to be around.
They are extremely curious and most will approach people easily.
The manner in which treat each other is characterized by bouts of spitting, kicking and neck wrestling.
When correctly reared spitting at a human is a rare thing.
Llamas are very social herd animals, however, and do sometimes spit at each other as a way of disciplining lower-ranked llamas in the herd.
A llama’s social rank in a herd is never permanent. They can always move up or down in the social ladder by picking small fights.
This is usually done between males to see who becomes alpha.
Their fights are visually dramatic with spitting, ramming each other with their chests, neck wrestling and kicking, mainly to knock the other off balance.
The females are usually only seen spitting as a means of controlling other herd members.
While the social structure might always be changing, they live as a family and they do take care of each other.
If one notices a strange noise or feels threatened, a warning bray is sent out and all others come to alert.
They will often hum to each other as a form of communication.
The sound of the llama making groaning noises or going “mwa” is often a sign of fear or anger.
If a llama is agitated, it will lay its ears back.
Guard Behavior

Using Llamas as livestock guards in North America began in the early 1980s and some sheep producers have used llamas successfully for that entire time.
The ideal guard animal should protect sheep against predators while requiring minimal training, care, and maintenance.
A variety of guard animals currently in use include dogs, donkeys, kangaroos, ostriches, and llamas.
Llama should remain in a small area until the sheep and llama seem well-adjusted and attached to each other. This encourages bonding between the sheep and llama.
Fiber
Llamas also have a fine undercoat which can be used for handicrafts and garments.
The coarser outer guard hair is used for rugs, wall-hangings and lead ropes.
The fiber comes in many different colors ranging from white, grey, reddish brown, brown, dark brown and black.
This article incorporates text from the article “Llama” in the Encyclopedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, a publication now in the public domain on Wikipedia.

We hope that you have enjoyed learning about Llamas. Please look for more antic’s in the Adventures of RJ the Llama and his animal family.

Posted in Blog or Stories, Medical

Princess Bella

What a joy to have beautiful and kind granddaughters; Bella, Michelle, and Elaine.

Bella had an extended family Birthday Breakfast this morning, She really enjoyed pulling her gifts out of her bag.  She is quite the little Princess at two years old.  She loves to eat pancakes for breakfast and have apple juice.

Cousins w/aunt, grandma, & grandpa, sisters and mommy and daddy were all guests of her royal highness. She entertained us all with her enthusiasm and sweet smiles of happiness.

 

 

 

Posted in Medical

Conversion disorder- Pseudoseizures

What people say about nonepileptic seizures

  1. People tell you that you are acting crazy.
  2. They tell you to snap out of it
  3. They accuse you of attention-getting
  4. They tell you that you can stop the nonsense of shaking with a positive attitude.
  5. They tell you it’s all in your head and you could stop them if you really wanted to.

What is it like to have a nonepileptic seizure disorder?

 1. You may feel as though you are acting crazy or irresponsible.

2. You feel guilty, humiliated, and embarrassed all at the same time. (apologies often follow seizures to those around you)

3. You feel anxious, then hold on for the ride (shaking or intense staring)

4. You are cognitive throughout the seizure and recover quickly, although feelings of fatigue accompany the thrashing about.

5. You just want to get to the bottom of the issue and get it stopped.

6. You may feel as if there is no hope to stop the anxiety that is causing the issue.

7. you may think you don’t need talk therapy or a psychologist to help you cope.

My Story:

I had pseudoseizures from 1995-2001. My father-in-law passed away from Cancer and I couldn’t accept the suffering he went through, and I had Post-traumatic-stress-disorder from childhood memories haunting me. When my husband moved me away from the graveyard access and the cause of the childhood issues, I began to get better. I had an awesome psychiatrist who treated my symptoms until his death in March 2017.

I visited a new psychiatrist, and the first thing he did was remove the Lexapro anxiety medication from my list. He did not replace it with another medication but had me go cold turkey from it. The pseudoseizures resumed in earnest. Currently, I just finished the visual 72hr EEG. I know they didn’t find anything conclusive since I was in bed & chair rest for the 3 days while I was being videoed. I betcha they comeback with pseudoseizures as a diagnosis.

Even happy occasions can trigger the pseudoseizure. I was at my 40th wedding anniversary party, passing our gifts over to my husband and BOOM! a seizure hits fast and hard, I am embarrassed. My mom is holding my head still and praying over me. My husband and friend are holding me in the chair. Soon it is over and we pick up where we left off. I feel embarrassed by the negative attention I just received. Negative in that it was not wanted or sought out after but was administered by frightened people.

Heat, Humidity, or Activities can overtax your mind and cause stress that can lead to pseudoseizures. Just trying to get the grocery shopping done and put away can trigger an anxiety attack. Or shopping in an overheated store, or being in physical pain can be a trigger. It doesn’t have to be an unresolved past history to be a trigger. I think mine is because I do feel anxious about everyday things, like unload and reload the dishwasher or washing machine, then add a list of other chores that need to be done and BANG! another seizure hits. I believe that if the doctor would put me back on an anxiety medication the symptoms would go away again.

Three weeks later: I am on anti-anxiety and anti-seizure medication once again and I haven’t had any seizure activity. At the most, I’m stemming (compulsive repetitive action) with my hands shaking or rubbing my cheek. I know when that begins I need to calm down, usually, I’m over-focusing on some project or activity and my brain is telling me to take a rest.

The downside it cost me 20% of the $15,000.00 bill to determine I needed to go back on the same medication Dr. Reddy took me off of. What a waste of money, time, and effort on everyone’s part.