One of the books I read a few years ago wrote about filling your own bucket. (How full is your Bucket? http://strengths.gallup.com/114079/Full-Bucket.aspx) The theory following air flight attendants advice of put on your own oxygen mask before trying to help someone else. Over the years I learned that PTSD punches a hole in my bucket. Sometimes a bucket is punched with so many holes the water runs out as fast as it goes in. Counseling taught me how to mend holes in my bucket. Please understand, a counselor can not magically fix all the holes in your bucket. If a counselor claims such a thing, I recommend looking for a different counselor. The teaching process is slow and arduous. I am of the belief that hard is not a bad thing. I appreciate those things that I strive for. The harder I work at it the better I seem to feel when I meet my goal. I can also get discouraged, if I am set up to fail by myself or someone else. Yes, sometimes I am my own worse enemy. In my journey to healing I was blessed with a counselor that was a pro at bucket filling. At the end of each session he assured me that I could heal and I was important. At first I discounted anything he said that was positive. He addressed my total neglect of any compliments or bucket filling. I shrugged and replied, “I don’t need to duck a compliment.” I didn’t pay attention to them because I did not view them as essential to my day to day survival. After years of working on healing, I now understand why my counselor spent many sessions teaching me to mend the holes and fill my own bucket. I still struggle with positive self talk but I am noticing an improvement. PTSD exists because major holes get punched in someone’s bucket. Heal the holes, heal the soul.