When I was diagnosed with Dystonia I developed a need for control; exercising it in life helped me cope with the lack of it in my body. Consequently, I don’t cope well when things are beyond my ability to manipulate. On the evening of the 1st May I was sexually assaulted. I’m not going to go into details. However, for a person who craves control in life this was yet another stark and frightening reminder of how little control I have. Naturally the police were involved, and I must say the support I have received from both them and my university has been outstanding. Unfortunately, due to a lack of forensic evidence the police were unable to charge my attacker. Whilst a disappointing outcome there’s a lot that can be taken from this ordeal. As many of you may have picked up from my blog posts over the last week, my emotions have been all over the place; one moment I’m smiling, the next I have a hatred for all near me, and then I’m crying. It’s been exhausting.
Whilst retelling the attack to the police officer working the case, he mentioned to me that many victims of assault emotionally spiral and are unable to cope; he asked that I try not to let this happen to me. I informed him that that isn’t me; I am a stubborn woman. Whilst I’ll admit the last week has been a bit up in the air, I haven’t hidden away from the world. If I can live with Dystonia, then I can make it through this. I simply refuse to let anyone have a negative impact on my life. It is mine and I will be happy!
Focusing on the positives around the incident has been key to enabling myself to feel like me again. I have been thinking about when in 2012, during a stay in hospital, a rather arrogant neurologist, who had missed the module on bedside manner, misdiagnosed my symptoms as psychosomatic. He informed my family and I that my symptoms were due to trauma and stress, and that they would continue flaring up whenever my stress levels increased. He was obviously wrong and months later I received a correct diagnosis, but this misdiagnosis and subsequent few months of incorrect treatment still irk me. However, I cannot remember the last time I was as stressed and emotionally charged as I have been over this past week, but my Dystonia has stayed at its usual spasm level throughout – despite my Botox being overdue. Proving once again that the previous neurologist was wrong. It’s a fact that for me, provides a gateway to happiness in what has been a dark time.