Mad Like Alyce

To the nurse who encouraged me through a trigger

When you have PTSD, there are all kinds of little things that can set off a trigger. A phrase. A sound. A touch. A smell. I certainly experience these on a fairly regular basis, and each time… I’m frustrated. Even though I know the triggers themselves are beyond my control, I just simply have to focus on what I DO have control over and manage my reaction to said trigger.

But as with all things in life… there is one that gets me every time. Needles. Now, I have always been afraid of needles. I was the child that had to be held down by 4 dads for my kindergarten shots, and who locked myself in the bathroom at the doctor’s office at age 9 because I didn’t want to do a blood draw. Over time, I started to at least tolerate this fear… until suddenly I couldn’t. Perhaps this phobia was exasperated by my PTSD, but since I started experiencing my PTSD symptoms I have continued to struggle.

Now, I still allow shots and give blood, etc. I just handle it to varying degrees. Shots make me extremely shaky. Giving blood (Just a little for tests. A donation would be the end of me!) often makes me pass out. But when it comes to an IV… checkmate. It’s not the fact that it is getting put in but that it is still there that gets me. Like a violation of the very substance that makes my physical being. I try so hard to tough it out… but usually don’t make it too long before breaking down into hysterical sobbing. It’s not fun for me, and its not fun for whoever is placing said IV.

I’ve had over 10 medical procedures in the last 6 years that have required the use of an IV, and much to my incredible embarrassment and humiliation… I have reacted this way. Every. Single. Time. Anytime I interact with a medical professional and the use of a needle is required, I warn them. But when it comes to an IV, I still don’t think they are fully prepared. Their reactions have varied. Some surgeons were wonderful and allowed me to be put out before the IV was placed. Others would chastise me and comment on how this is what happens to spoiled children, as if my PTSD was a by-product of my upbringing. I even had an anesthesiologist attempt to make me reschedule to a different facility, as if I wasn’t humiliated enough.

But for my most recent procedure, I had a very different experience and it was all because of you. When I explained my predicament, you listened without judgment. Understanding my fears, you brought me something for the anxiety. When the meds were not kicking in fast enough, you held my hand and asked me if I would be ok to proceed.  I made it further into the whole procedure before crying than I ever had before, and when the sobbing began you kept your composure and encouraged me. I know that type of bedside manner is often reserved for children… or at least that’s how I feel. Regardless of what you actually felt about administering to a sobbing 20-something woman over an IV, you made the procedure far less traumatic then it could have been.

So even if you went back to the nursing station and exclaimed to your co-workers about the hysterical woman in bed 12, or complained to your husband later that night, I still will never be able to tell you how much your understanding and compassion in those moments meant to me. Just know that on that day, you made such a huge difference to me, and getting me safely through a trigger is no small feat. Thank you. From the bottom of my heart.

Hello!

Hi! I'm Alyce.
Welcome to my journey towards living a happier and healthier life while living with PTSD and chronic pain... and never letting it keep me from my passion for Halloween, cooking, and way too many DIY projects... all at the same time!

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  • The top 9 for madlikealyce! It has been a fantastic year, trying out all kinds of new things and really expanding on my love for makeup and cosplay. Thank you to all of my AMAZING FRIENDS AND FOLLOWERS who have been with me on this journey. I can wait until my shoulder has healed enough to get back to it, I have a whole LIST of things I am dying to try! In the meantime, I’m at least back to writing on the blog, so make sure to check me out there, Link in bio. ❤️ you all!
  • Sick day snuggles. But at least it’s my first day out of the sling! #countdownisover #pitbullsofinstagram #pitbull #drinkallthetea
  • My new favorite IG account... u need to scroll through these posts! #Repost @iamtheswimreaper (@get_repost)
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Lol #justbeingbasic
  • Bahahahaha too funny not to share! #followyourdreams #freddykrueger
  • When I first saw @miss_stryx post her challenge, it really shook me. What AM I most afraid of? My first thought... was everything. Which made me realize that honestly, my biggest fear is losing control of my PTSD. I was diagnosed with PTSD 9 years ago, but it  took a good few years before I really understood what that even meant and how it impacted how I felt each day. It took even more years of counseling and amazing support from my friends and family before I was able to really get control of it. I'm happy to say that I'm now at a place where I live with PTSD but it doesn't control me. That being said, I'm always terrified of what might happen if it would spiral away from me again.
My second greatest fear is something that has plagued me from my childhood, but became an outright phobia and trigger once I developed PTSD. That is a fear of needles.  Shots, giving blood, and especially IVs.  Then it hit me... what is the perfect combination of both of these  fears? A lobotomy. A very controversial treatment used in the past on people with mental illness, involving a huge needle. 
From that terrifying vision came an awesome collaboration with some really great friends, and filmed and edited by the INSANELY talented @jibclimmer to complete my first ever horror short film. I'm so thankful to have so many talented and wonderful people that were willing and excited about making this vision a reality. I hope this isn't too dark for you guys, but I totally understand if it is! The idea actually terrified me and I put myself in the very center of it! Ultimately, filming this was actually not scary at all, as I have such incredible friends, and I was in a safe space the entire time. This particular version of the film is not the final version, since we were limited to 60 seconds on Instagram. Very soon we hope to have the entire short film up and posted and I will make sure to let you all know when that is live on YouTube! It is with great pleasure that I present to you my entry for round 1 of the #StrykingFEAR contest.
  • What would you do if you foresaw the telling of your own death? Here are some stills of my round 2 entry for the #StrykingFEAR contest. To see  the backstory on my Undead fortune-teller,  check out my last post for a quick short film introduction. The 2 part tutorial video should hopefully be up on the blog shortly!
  • For round 2 of the #StrykingFEAR contest, the character I was initially least excited about was the fortune teller. Why? Because fortune tellers are usually great beauty makeups. While I love doing horror looks, I really can't say I'm great shakes at beauty makeup. And then it hit me... what a great opportunity to do something outside my comfort zone AND something familiar with a two part makeup? I borrowed a crystal ball from a friend, ordered tarot cards, and learned a little bit on how to do a reading and pulled together an ending to this fortune teller's story… or should I say beginning?
  • When your sling gives you a full blown chronic pain flareup. Laying on the floor with my legs up to help take pressure off my lower back, and mystic seems pretty concerned. Good thing I have episode three of the @girlinspacepodcast to listen to!If you haven't started listening to this audio drama, you need to check it out ASAP! #chronicpain #chronicfatigue #lifeinasling #girlinspace #findme
  • Good things happen when you leave the apartment for the first time in a week! These must've gotten dropped off when I was taking a nap, I opened my front door to find this gorgeous Halloween bouquet on my doormat from @bkbecker! I just can't get over those adorable bats!!! #ihavethebestfriends #halloween

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