I have often wondered what it must be like for my two, who have experienced trauma, to have flashbacks. Where they relive a memory, an experience.

You know those bracelets, that snap around your wrist when you touch them? That’s what it’s like. Sometimes you can be fiddling with it for ages, nothing. Then touch it gently, and its snaps into action. Wrapping itself around your wrist or just curling up. It can take two hands to unwrap it. They come in thousands of colours and designs. They have been around for years. Am sure we will have some in a drawer somewhere. But that’s what it’s like.

Minding your own business. Walking. Talking. Doing nothing. It can be a sight. A smell. A sound. A feeling.

It snaps.

It encompasses.

It takes over.

It can pluck you out of the here and now. Into a different time zone. Forwards, but usually backwards. So you are right there.

Starring into the eyes of the one who hurt you. Who left you. Who scared you. Who terrified you.

Right back to the time you froze in sheer terror. Unable to move. To terrified to breathe.

Snapped back. Plucked from reality. The blood pumping faster and faster around each artery. Your heart pounding. The scream inside your head deafens you. Louder and louder. Begging for help.

White light. Faces flashing before you. You don’t know who they are. You know you have to be afraid. But don’t know why. You have to relive the experience, because you might see what happened next. Then you see it happening. You see the figure. The person who hurt you. Who really hurt you. They start to turn round. You can actually see the fibres of their hair in high definition as they turn. Your heart is pounding. Louder. Louder. They turn to look at you. You see the whites of their eyes.

Snapped back to the here and now.

Heart pounding. Full of fear. You have no idea what happened. Why it happened. One day you might see their face. Have some understanding. Some end to the story. Filling in the gaps. The final piece of the jigsaw.

Not today.

Not now.

Just empty.

until the next time.


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11 thoughts on “Snapped

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  1. That sort of reminded me of what it’s like to be thrown back into grief but it’s so terribly sad when kids are ill treated, thank you for being brave and sharing with us. #blogstravaganza

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Matthew, your words are so wise! The analogy you used is so adept at explaining how a flashback must feel to those who have experienced trauma. Your boys are so fortunate to have such a wonderful father come into their life and help heal them- though I know you would say you’re more honored by having them in your life.

    Thank you for joining us this week on #fortheloveofBLOG

    Liked by 1 person

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