max and the ptsd monster
To check on me. She knew I was physically okay. Facebook drama had settled by the time she logged on. I’d posted I was okay.
I laughed and said, I’m shaking off the PTSD.
She said, Yeah, that’s the part I worry about, the pacing stuff.
She has known me a long time.
I was pacing when she said that. Five feet up, five feet down, sharp turns. I tried to stop when she said that.
She and I are alike. We know that place. The pacing place.
Crap went down Friday night. Someone shot at me. Strange men pounding on my door. I posted some of it on Facebook because I wanted to leave a “last known location” trail if I went missing.
I talked to one person who called. Then I turned the phone off.
If people are hunting you, a phone ringing in your pocket is not helpful.
I spent a night in a police station once.
I had been arrested for grand theft auto.
I’d found an old truck with the keys in it, started that baby up, put it in reverse, and slammed it backwards through twenty-two ornamental hedgerows.
Then leaned on the horn with the doors locked when the truck bottomed out on hedgerow number twenty-three and waited till every light in the neighborhood came on and someone with a badge knocked on my window.
Back Story: I’d been attacked by three men, fought my way free, crawled a mile through shrubs and back roads to a neighborhood with enough houses to call for help.
The men trying to rape and kill me had hunted and caught me once on blacktop after I escaped and tried to run me down with a car.
People are mostly cowards. It’s easy to close the blinds.
I started up that truck and rammed it over all those hedges to make sure no one would close the blinds.
The police guys kept asking me for descriptions. I had to keep saying, Look, I was abducted before, I keep seeing that instead of this, I can’t give you a good description, my head keeps interchanging what happened then with what happened now.
I was seventeen.
Flashing back to an abduction at fourteen.
The one thing I could give those police guys was a description of the car that tried to run me down. One of the police guys remembered it being on the outskirts of all the Max hedge truck excitement sitting on the road with two guys standing next to it watching the mayhem that ensued from my grand theft auto stint.
They were right there. Watching. Close enough to grab me off a porch if I made the wrong porch choice.
I’m so glad I stole that truck.
Nobody pressed charges. They were nice people. They got it.
People want to know what happened Friday night. They’re curious. They’re concerned. Here’s the thing. I’m a bad witness. I’ve been in so many fucked up bad you are about to die these fuckers are trying to kill you situations in my life? A martial arts instructor who only trained black belts once inducted me into his class because he thought they could learn something from me. And I didn’t even have a belt. How fucked up is that?
I can’t give you details. It makes me pace. Also they might be wrong. My head goes into PTSD Max Mode. Past and present fucked up violence moments overlap in my head.
I’m still twitching every time there’s a noise in the hall.
I’m still pacing.
But I love everyone who expressed concern.
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