PTSD following a traumatic experience is always a difficult thing to express and get past. My own experiences both surviving some terrible car wrecks and living with schizophrenia have left different but lasting effects. The effects from the car wrecks are more easily observed with a paranoia of watching traffic, subconsciously traveling under the posted speed limit, and feelings of great unease whenever a car’s suspension feels “odd.”
Watching someone you love wrestle with schizophrenia and go to very very dark places and then watch them slowly recover leaves much harder to quantify effects. This is a conversation for a much longer post that is deeper than I have time to go into. Instead, I would like to talk about what I am thankful for and what has helped me get through some of the most difficult times.
The #1 biggest help making it through difficult times has been through community. Family and close friends in my zip codes played a huge part, but the online community of strangers also was a great help. I started posting regularly in Swedespeed when things were bad as a form of escape as I am a person who often thinks best out loud. Through the forum I’ve developed some amazing friendships with people that I would have never encountered before. Friendships with people who were by intention or by accident, also using cars as an avenue of recreation as a coping mechanism.
Obviously there are some very unhealthy kinds of coping mechanisms to be found on car forums driving extravagant purchases and polishing egos to their max, but I found my honesty about what I was going through also encouraged honesty in others, making for a accidental support group. I looked for people who were driven to not just survive but to come through and succeed in the face of difficulty.
Now being 3+ years in recovery without a hospital visit I think it’s safe to say we are out of the woods and that has me very thankful.
A warm word of thanks goes out to all those that I have interacted with over the past 5 years post-diagnosis. Anyone who is rolling into a situation like mine, I strongly encourage to develop healthy relationships of encouraging and driven people who have long term goals in mind and to avoid those with only short term survival mechanisms. Be open and honest and you will find support.
Projects I have been working on since my last update:
It’s been an extremely stressful and busy time at work for me with hiring of new staff, working on construction projects, and the constant evolution towards giving a better customer experience. These complications seemed like they took up the majority of my creative energy, but I have taken on a couple other projects too.
The XC to V project is complete. The car is rolling on 20” Cratus wheels and rides on the Heico suspension. The car really is exactly what I wanted it to be and I’m very pleased with it.
I’ve also sourced a set of late R-Design seats and retrofit them in to further the Faux R theme
My other projects, the two C30s, 2 v50s, and s40 are all complete and sold, with the exception of the s40. It still has not found a home yet but a sale is pending.
I’ve added a 2015 xc70 and a 2006 s60 to the mix of projects and have picked up more than a few parts cars, perhaps most notable with the first Brit-coin to add to the mix in my hopes of exploring what parts can be retrofit from the Jaguar variation of an R to the Volvo R, then both being owned by the same company at the time, I have hope for larger brakes! Also Jaguar wheels… 🙂