Some people shrug at the concept of PTSD, thinking it’s all in your head – well, YES, as a matter of fact, it IS all in your head – just like all the other types of psychological disorders and suppressed issues that many people have. We carry that shit around like baggage, but not physically – in our heads. I had a minor case of PTSD, and although I didn’t fight in Iraq or anything major like that, it was still a pretty intense feeling that I didn’t expect, nor could I control it when it happened.
|Woodstock '99: A Shit Pond|
|Fraser Island, Australia|
There was also an added complication – I was on my period. Fantastic! So, there was no way I would be able to convince THAT bodily function to go on strike as I was able to do before. We had set up camp and it was time to take the trek to the cluster of blue shit boxes. We joked about our Woodstock experience while approaching them and although I laughed, I could feel my heart rate and anxiety level rising.
When I opened the door to the port-o-loo and that pungent scent of chemical toilet mingled with feces that mounded high enough that I could see it, I slammed the door, backed away far enough and collapsed onto the ground. I broke out into a cold sweat and began to hyper ventilate, however I managed to calm myself down enough so at least I didn’t pass out. After a few minutes, I was able to ask my friend to see if she could find one that was less full – as I knew, however unbearable it would be, I still had to go through with it.
It was still quite a few minutes before I was composed enough to get up off the ground and face that fucking disgusting port-o-loo. I tried not to touch the seat, although I wasn’t quite tall enough to avoid contact entirely. I also tried not to breathe in and I concentrated on getting my task over with as quickly as possible. I was still sweating and I could feel my heart pounding in my burning ears. It was one of the worst moments in my life – and it was all because of a damn toilet.
So, no – I don’t drop to the ground when I hear a car back-fire or have blackouts, but even public toilets have the ability to make me uncomfortable now; as long as they can flush, I try to deal with it.
Like John Cage from Ally McBeal –
“I like a fresh bowl and remnants upset me.”