I am driving down a two lane road with tall pine trees lining each side. Rolling hills stretch out in front of me and the shadows that are cast across the road tell me that it is evening and the sun is starting to get low. This concerns me a little because I am searching for…..something. I am not sure what it is that is drawing me toward it, but it is overwhelming. It feels like a string has been attached to the skin at the base of my skull and there is a constant tugging that I must follow. As I get closer to whatever this is, the sensation becomes far more intense.
What feels like an electric shock hits me behind my eyes and I instinctively pull over the side of the road and park. There is a dirt driveway cutting through the trees to my right, so I pull the Explorer onto it and slowly make my way down the rough, dirt, path.
After about three-hundred yards, I come to a mobile home on the right; nestled in among the trees. As I step out of the SUV, a young woman, probably in her late twenties, steps out of the trailer. She is dressed in thin and a bit disheveled. Her cutoff shorts and tank top hang somewhat loose on her and her pale face is sunken. I barely stop myself from making a quip about how “drugs are bad mmmm k” and instead put on my more diplomatic, charismatic, charm.
“Evening, ” I say in with my natural southern, Texas, accent and a smile. “I am working with detective (X) on the (X) missing person case. If you don’t mind, I am going to just talk a walk in the woods across the drive here.”
“You ain’t from human services?”
Her question combined with the strange look on her face confirms what my “spidey senses” had already been telling me.
“No, I am not.” I reply calmly. “And, I really don’t see why any other law enforcement need be called out here. I’m just taking a look. It’s probably nothing.”
I know that it is not “nothing”. The electric sensation behind my eyes that radiates to the base of my skull is vibrating with such intensity that I am amazed that she doesn’t hear it.
She slide/slinks her way back through the torn screen door and disappears inside the trailer. As she does, I allow my smile to slip and turn toward the treeline.
An intense dread overcomes me and I feel nauseated suddenly; and I know that this means that I am close to…something. I see a narrow trail going into the woods, so I follow it. Paying more attention to that string that is pulling me than my regular senses, I almost stepped on a sheet of paper. It looked to be weathered, damp, and torn; but I could still see the printing on it.
It was a missing persons flier; and I recognized the woman on it. I reach down and pick the paper up, and part of it tears from being stuck to whatever was below it. I pull it free, and see that it was placed over a partially buried head; its face looking up at me blankly. The color, and the smell, of a dead body decomposing in the wild is something a person will never forget.
I freeze and look around, my senses on high alert, and I start to back away. I retreat down the trail and run over to the Explorer. I find my phone inside and dial a number that I somehow know is the detective…..
And I find myself leaping out of bed. Disoriented, I look around the dark bedroom and try to figure out where, and when, I am. I can taste the smell of the decomposing head in my mouth and start gagging. I run into the bathroom and splash water on my face, pour a glass of water and down it rapidly. I know, somewhere in the back of my addled brain that this taste, and smell (yes, this smell has an actual taste to it), is not “real”. That does not change the fact that I can still taste and smell it. My hands are shaking as I look in the mirror, startled at my reflection and the ashen color of my skin.
I have no idea what case that was, or who the woman was, or the detective, or even where I had just been. But I knew, with complete certainty, that I would find out one day soon. Sometime in the near future, I would get an email, or a phone call, or see a news story, and I would get pulled into the case.
I recently started personal therapy to deal with some reactions that I have had for years that I can only call “triggers”. A song, a smell, a taste, a situation, a voice, could cause me to lock up, to retreat rapidly, to cause my brain to just stop working. Or, in the worst cases, I would get angry suddenly, or depressed and completely shut down. This could last for a few minutes or a couple of days. My therapist diagnosed me with Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (C-PTSD). Unlike the PTSD that most people, myself included, thought that we understood it to be;C-PTSD is like boiling a frog. If a frog is placed into a pot of boiling water it will jump out immediately. If a frog is placed into a pot of tepid water, and the temperature is increased slowly, the frog will sit there and boil. It does this because it does not recognize the danger because it is increased over time.
My parents were extremely cruel and loved to torture us for punishment. I grew up in a very strict, religious family that imposed a harsh set of rules and punishments as well. I had been through a very long, and emotionally abusive marriage before finally escaping (that is a whole other blog topic). But, mostly, working the hundreds of murder cases got to me. My particular ability is that I can see another place as if I am actually there. It is called remote viewing. Add to this that I can actually go to the scene of a crime as the crime is happening. And, I can feel what the victim feels, as well as the perp. I have felt what it is like to be stabbed to death, burned alive, fallen from great heights, shot, beaten, raped, and just about every other way there is to die. I have also felt the sensations from doing those things to others; which is just terrible and disgusting.
So, yeah, C-PTSD and the psychic detective. I feel like my therapist is always waiting to see me because it is like another episode of some strange documentary series. I am learning a lot about myself though, and I intend to keep blogging about it all. They have suggested going through EMDR treatment. EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) is a new-ish treatment that is supposed to reprogram the brain in such a way that it is able to process past trauma and put it where it belongs. Someone like me takes trauma and compartmentalizes it. In other words, I don’t deal with it at the time. I block it away in some box in my brain so I can deal with the situation at hand. The problem is that it stays in the box. That box becomes two, then three, then 4,000. The boxes start to spill over and dump their contents a little at a time. Or, like a pneumatic cylinder that is given too much pressure, it either ruptures or it vents through a safety “pop-off” valve that releases just enough pressure to keep things from exploding.
It is helpful to talk about some of these things on here because, finally, I have a venue ( I refuse to use the word “medium” since I am one..lol) where I can talk about how these experiences tie into my Primal nature and my heightened senses. The psychic medium, the Primal Dominant, and the professional career guy are all living inside the same body. We are all the same person. I made friends with my demons long, long ago (once again, another blog) and we all get along just fine now.
If you have experience with C-PTSD, I would love to hear about it. If you have experience with EMDR, I would love to hear about it. If you have thoughts on any of this, I would love to hear about it.