Monthly Archives: June 2016

Anniversary looming

This anniversary is kicking my ass… I’m ok at times, then I’m a hot mess at others. 

I want to cry. I want to shred myself… 

I want to drown my head out. 

I’ve had the better part of a 16oz beer with a high alcohol content. As much as I want to throw up from the heaviness of the beer, I’m loving the spin happening in my head. While it doesn’t kill the agony, it dulls it to a tolerable level… 

I know Dr C wants me not to dissociate from this hurt, but I’m not sure I want the same thing she does. Yeah, it’s progress to sit with it all, but it’s also progress simply to be “free” and functioning. I’m battling the urge to simply off myself pretty much daily. I know I’m going to win that battle, but it’s hard on a day to day basis…

I keep telling Dr C, L, and myself that I will be ok at the end of this anniversary. Part of me knows that’s true. And part of me also “knows” that won’t be true. It’s the part of me that’s still stuck in the trauma… it’s the part of me that “knows” death would bring peace finally. I know it’s wrong though. I know that it may bring peace for me, but it would also push the pain to someone else. 

I’m so tired of the struggle. I’m tired of the cycle. I’m tired of fighting for my quality of life…

I think I’m going to take Dr C up on the concept of seeing an interim therapist. I think I’ve seen her before, but I was pretty dissociative at the time, so I don’t remember much of it. I know L saw her briefly, but she wasn’t directive enough. That works well for me. I don’t think Dr C has talked to her yet, but I’m really hoping she will figure it out before she goes away…


Insomnia’s kinda a bitch…

I’m so physically tired, but I can’t seem to get a decent night’s sleep (emotionally tired also, but…).

Over the weekend, I managed to gather a group of people together for art journaling. It was fun, but the clean-up before and after was exhausting, as was trying to smile and put on a happy face when I’ve wanted to cry all weekend. Don’t get me wrong, I loved doing it, I’m just tired.

Got therapy in a little bit. I’m trying to prioritize what to cover today. There’s still stuff floating around from previous weeks, but there’s also the impending anniversary, and her trip, and current stressors… I’ve got 2 hours in the next two weeks to address everything I need to before she’s gone for a month. :sigh: I dunno.

I’m really liking when my life focuses on art. It’s genuine, but that also makes it very vulnerable. As much as I want to be able to show off the works that mean a lot to me, I’m hesitant. Even the slightest rejection or displeasure around those feels like it’s a rejection of me (even if the person has no idea what the piece means). So I try to keep those hidden… :/

I guess I should head out of I want to grab something to eat on the way to session…


Surprise! Another trigger…

There was a scene in the Empire pilot where one of the sons was remembering the first time he dressed in his mom’s heels in front of his dad. The dad got really mad and grabbed the kid. He stormed out of the room with the kid under his arm. The mom yelled after him, scared and angry…

Something about that scene hit home, but I’m not totally sure how or why. It hit really hard. It winded me and made me cry. It felt overwhelming and heavy. It still feels overwhelming and heavy… I can’t tell if I related more to running after him screaming, or watching him storm off with the kid, or being the kid under his arm… or maybe all of it? But it dug at something deep.

Part of me wants to reach out to Dr C, but I can’t justify bothering her on her weekend. I’ll just try to cover it Monday (along with everything else I want to cover – how to deal with her month away, more of what was in that journal entry from 2 weeks ago, the anniversary, the growing depression…)

I want my heart to creep back into my chest; it’s still on the floor…


Therapy vacation coming up… :/

Dr C will be on vacation for a month starting in about 2 weeks. I’m not sure what I want to do during that time. She gave me the option of being set up with someone else while she is away, kinda a check-in thing. I told her I needed to think about it. She mentioned having someone that will cover for her in case of emergencies. I wanted to remind her that I would likely not bother that person, but I remained silent and nodded… I’m not really in a place of definitely needing someone to talk to while she is gone, but I also know it’s hard going even 1.5 weeks between appointments because of holidays… I know I’d be overall fine at the end of the month, but getting to the end of the month will be difficult.

She’s also considering having someone take over and run the group for her while she is gone. That would be good, since I think all of us have her as our therapist.

If I see someone while she’s gone, not only will I be keeping it all surface stuff, but I’ll have to do the copay at the time of the sessions… I hope she can find someone to cover the group. At least that copay would be cheaper (by a lot)…

At least she’ll be here for the shitty anniversary… hopefully once that’s over, I’ll be able to balance better.


Nightmares

I think it was here that I was talking about bad dreams vs nightmares (how I rarely consider anything I dream a nightmare because it doesn’t really scare me as badly as a nightmare should)… Anyway, I would definitely consider the dream I just woke from a nightmare.

In it, I was driving slow through a parking lot looking for a space. One of the cousins in L’s family was walking there with his kids. The oldest kid (still only like 5 in the dream) stated running around as they were walking. His parents tried to redirect him to be careful because of the cars, but they missed grabbing his arm as he ran by. I gritted to slam on my brakes,but they didn’t work. I hit the older kid before I simply slammed the shifter into park to avoid hitting everyone else… the kid ended up being ok. He had to go to the hospital, but he was ok. The rest of the family (in true dream style) just bounced off my car like marshmallows when it got close. I got in trouble for hitting the kid, but my punishment was to drive somewhere with the maintenance guy from my job (he was a Marshall or something like that in the dream). We drove through my Facebook feed, and everyone either hated me for being reckless, or the parents for not keeping better control of their kids… then part-way through the feed, as I’m sobbing because I hurt a child, a former boss sits down with me to do art therapy. I’m still crying hysterically and feeling shitty… then the dog woke me up.

Anyway, aside of realizing that in the dream, I managed to make it all about me and my emotions around having hurt the kid, it was definitely what I would consider a nightmare. It Feely like I couldn’t escape it, and like I had caused an insurmountable amount of pain for others. I couldn’t shake the feeling after I awoke either. It helped wiring about it though. For some reason, simply thinking about it as a dream doesn’t do much, but being able to write it out and see how impossible it is helped process it as a nightmare rather than reality…

It’s also an effective reminder that I need to finally change my brakes. At the last oil change, the mechanic suggested changing them within the next 3000 miles. It’s been about that long…


A pattern of tolerance for the negative

A theme for the week: tolerating triggering situations for the small benefits they may bring.

It was a topic of conversation during Monday’s session. It came up during the week, it came up again today, and it’s wrapped up in the self-harm… Dr C pointed out the pattern to me Monday, and suddenly it’s weaving it’s way through everything (well, at least, I’m noticing it). It’s even a thread through my healthier coping skills: Breathe through the tuff stuff to get to the other side… as Dr C pointed out Monday, it’s what I did to get through as a kid, and it’s what I keep doing. I get that it would be good for me to change that pattern, but there’s some comfort in it. I tolerate the bad for the bits of good…

There are however, aspects of life where I don’t follow that pattern anymore. My relationship with L is a great example of that. There is no tolerating of the bad to get to the good. Sure, we have disagreements, and both of us have our share of being jerks at times, but I think we have a healthy and supportive relationship. We try to address things as they come up, and we love each other. We avoid trying to make the other feel weak, scared, or small. We build each other up. We hold the other’s self-worth when it tanks. And we genuinely care.

It certainly wasn’t the image I had for a relationship growing up. I always thought I’d marry an abusive serviceman who would beat and rape me daily… I’m not totally sure where I got that idea from, but it had always been there. I would imagine being left alone to deal with the abuse, as everyone would ignore his behavior. I would be told to be quiet and let him do whatever because his job was stressful. I would swallow the fear and just get through the day…

So yeah, some places I’ve broken that pattern, but other places it’s still very present. I tolerate triggering shows and movies because there’s some part of them I’m interested in (Game of Thrones is one of them). I focus on the good parts of it to get through the uncomfortable parts… yet when Dr C suggested I stop watching it in favor of not having to repeat the pattern, I cringed. As triggering as parts of the show may be, other parts are highly engaging.

Similarly, when hanging out with some people, I sit through conversations around triggering topics because I’m not sure how to effectively set a boundary around it one they start (and I’m triggered). I know Dr C and I talked about effective ways to politely set that boundary, but when the moment came, my mind was blank. I listened to my friend talk about her familial abuse history. It triggered flashbacks and dissociation. I felt myself slip into a more detached space. For the life of me, I could not find the words to ask her to stop. The only 2 options that came to mind for changing the topic would not have been very comfortable (for me or her). So instead, I listened to what she said from miles away, and responded when I thought I should respond. I really wanted to scream or run out of there, but I was raised to be polite and courteous. That would have been neither (though probably right on target for a trauma response)…

Anyway, so yeah. Patterns. Fun.


Back to a comfortable distance

Just that… there’s a numbness, a buffer between me and everything.

I’m ok with that.