(The following is a modified story, and any similarity with real-life is mere coincidence.)
It was the high of Marta's morning on a regular workday; she felt pleased to have done so much in a morning's time so far. Paperwork, phone calls, computer system issues, and customers' complaints were not a big deal. Marta was able to tackle even the most challenging requests from her demanding boss, as usual. Yet, that day was very different for Marta. A sudden flash from a piece of local news about a Florida missing dog made her stop her business. She must review the story and the five-minute video about a hurting German Shepherd on the side of a Miami Dade canal.
As Marta navigated the information, her pulse seemed to rise, and her stomach felt cramping, as a tear rolled down her chick. How could the news of a street dog affect her feelings? She had to return to her demanding work, but her eyes and mind seemed stuck in a picture on her desktop of a dog running freely on the beach, barking, and playing with his owner. According to the news, an alligator had attacked the missing dog, and there was little hope of him surviving this event.
Something else was bothering Marta's feelings and thoughts. It was not the news, it was not the unknown dog, and it was not the actual possible death of a dog that she read about while performing at her best on her Lenovo double screen computer. What could cause Marta so much distress in the middle of her work?
Indeed, Marta struggled to function well after reading the news; she had to take time off. However, stopping by the break room for some freshly brewed coffee was not enough. Her co-workers' small chat sounded far away, "What's up, Marta?" "Is everything okay?". Instead of helping her feel relaxed, she felt a gradual snow bowling of her distress—something she had not experienced before and was not able to manage. Marta needed help to continue with her typical working day.
A phone call to a therapist was her best option at that point. Why? Simply because Marta was undergoing symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder or PTSD. Yes, attempting to process and deal with powerfully affecting past events were symptoms of PTSD. What was Marta's PTSD all about? She was not aware of her afflicting issues until she saw the news on her computer. The pain brought about by the passing of 'Tobi,' her last German Shepherd dog, was almost unmanageable. Marta's dog had died by a canal near her home. Tobi, unlike the news dog, was not attacked by an alligator but by a thief. Tobi had saved Marta from being robbed at a park but lost his battle with life after a fight with his master's perpetrator.
Marta had since been dealing with chest pain, crying, and feeling lonely. Just like Marta, if you ever think that events from the past come to hunt you and distress you, "You probably have PTSD." Life is sometimes about eventful situations that we can manage well, but sometimes, there are situations that we are not ready to deal with alone.
What type of struggles needs your attention now? Are you ready for a life-rewarding learning moment? Let us discuss more in a therapy session. Feel free to call 954-501-0801 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for your free session. Namaste!