The trip across the USA has been very heartwarming. I’ve made it to Monteagle, Tennessee. I’m staying in a benzo buddy’s beautiful old victorian summer home that is part of a Chataqua. (If you don’t know what that word means, google it. I had to!) I’ve met so many kind and generous benzo buddies along the way. I can’t thank you all enough for your hospitality and kindness. I appreciate it very much.

What I am learning as I meet more benzo survivors is that it takes a very long time for many of us to heal. Will we heal 100%? Remains to be seen. I do think that we will have a predisposition for our bodies to not handle stress as well as we did before benzos. I could be wrong, but that’s my hunch.

The traveling has tired me out. I am glad I can rest here at this lovely home nestled in the oaks in the Smoky Mountains. I took Shakespeare, my service dog, out for a long walk this morning through the meadows and by the babbling brooks. Very tranquil.

In a few days I’ll be 43 months off of the benzo I took. I am not healed, but I have much more of a life than I did even six months ago. I am grateful for any amount of healing. People ask me what symptoms I have left: tingling (although it is about 90% gone, thankfully), ringing in my ears (still very loud), bone pain, muscle pain, extreme fatigue, immune system problems, thyroid sluggish, woozy dizziness, broken sleep, head pressure that is at times unbearable, burning spine, burning skin, burning tongue (all of the burning is about 85% better), facial pain, eye pain, horrible memory, exercise intolerance, can’t regulate body temperature very well, and gut issues. Everything is far more manageable, than it used to be. I’m grateful for that.

A year ago I could have not imagined taking this trip. I am so grateful I am healing enough now to give it a go.

I thank you all for your support. I thank Lisa for the use of her beautiful home. Even though our journey has been hard, it has created some strong friendships that will last all of time. We’ve survived something unimaginable.  That makes us family in the deepest sense of the word.

Thank you all for the help and support over the years.

Jennifer

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