Summers of 2008 were the best and the worst time of my life. We came home from school, screaming and jumping in the living room, summer vacations had just begun. My mother told us that we had to leave for grandmother’s home at 8 in the morning, as she lived in small little village a couple of hours away from our home. Excited my brother and I ran upstairs to pack our backpacks. I stuffed mine with coloring books, colors, action figure and gently placed a four-leaf clover that I found yesterday at school during lunch break. I remember grandma telling me if I ever find one, I’d be the luckiest boy in the world. I couldn’t wait to show it to her. My younger sister on the other hand, packed all her toys that she could find. After dinner, my mother tucked us in bed. I couldn’t sleep because of the excitement.

The next morning I woke up early, got dressed and ran out to the car. My mother brought our bags out and put them in the car. We were ready to go. The windows were rolled down, the sun shone bright; I could smell the warm fresh smell of the nature. My sister and I were singing our favorite songs on top of our lungs, while our mother laughed at how wrong the lyrics were. Everything seemed perfect, but not for long. My sister dropped her toy and couldn’t reach it because of the seatbelt. My mother went down to get it and the car got off track hitting the crash barrier.

“Mom!” I screamed as I woke up covered in sweat, my heart racing, I was out of breath. It has been a year since the incident, but every night I wake up to the same nightmare. The day still haunts me.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a mental health condition that is caused by a distressing event that an individual has either experienced or witnessed. Some people who go through rough situation sometimes find it had to adjust back to normal life, but with time it gets better, while on the other hand for some people, their routine is influenced, causing insomnia, severe anxiety and nightmares, that affect one’s social and personal lives. People tend to avoid going out with the fear that something around them might trigger them. It is important for individuals to seek help at this point. Pukaar is an organization that provides counseling to people suffering from PTSD with the help of a wonderful team of psychologists. We all go through tough times in our lives, but when our past starts affecting our present; this is where we need to make a decision to make some changes in our lives.

Written By: Izza Raza

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