Tag Archives: help

2am… (not the Anna Nalick song, though that’s now going through my head)

Woke up around 1 because it was too hot in here, now not able to get back to sleep. I’m stressing about our amount of stuff and where to put it all. I think a lot will head to storage. I thought we would be able to get rid of our unit, but it’s not looking like it. Even if we purge the items we have and don’t need/use, we still have a bunch of stuff.

The shipping container with our stuff from my mom’s house arrived today. I only cleared out a small portion of it but the apartment is full… help arrives later today to unpack the heavy things. Gulp! I really need to clear out the area where the snake cages will go so we can get those set up and out of the way. Then I think the rest of the big things will fall into place around it all. One of our bedroom closets smells heavily of cigarette smoke from the apartment next door. We have decided to use the living room closet instead for clothing and use that closet for tools and art supplies. We will also be putting both air purifiers into the bedroom, with the smaller one in that closet… neither of us smoke, and both find the stale smoke smell pretty gross. Hoping the air purifiers do their job.

We had an old friend over tonight. He brought his gf. It was nice to spend an extended time with friends (and without being in a muscle relaxer fog). I’m finding I am as isolated here as I was at my mom’s house, only here it’s just me during the day. L has a crazy work schedule. I’m not quite sure how she keeps up with it. I think when all is said and done, she ends up working close to 60 hours a week. Hopefully with me starting up at a former job again, she will be able to drop down to the one f/t job (which itself is almost 50 hours)…

After having met with Dr C last week, I’m questioning my self-assessment. I really need to ask her if she thinks I’m as messed up as I worry she thinks I am. I know I have a tendency to read into things based on my own perceptions, so I really need that reality check next time I meet with her. There’s so much more I’m finding I have no memory of (between anecdotes from L and from our friend, I’m finding I have gaps in time from as recent as right before I moved back to my mom’s house… though even L was saying she didn’t remember everything the friend was talking about tonight). I dunno… I know there were times at mom’s that flew by or I don’t remember, but it was easily explained. Aside of the triggered times with De, most of that time was spent lost on the internet. I think mom would have mentioned if anything noteworthy happened. Definitely need to ask Dr C about some of this stuff.

I know I was really distracted today when the landlord’s son came by with a key we had asked for. I felt bad about how inattentive I was when we talked. I’m normally more outgoing and genuine. I was just so distracted about the pod arriving, my head was in a million different places at the time. I know I felt disconnected when talking to him, and actually felt kinda dismissive and like a jerk. I didn’t mean to be. :/

Does anyone else get such a different perception of things? Does your reality match up with what others report? I find myself checking in with others more often than not these days. I don’t trust my perceptions anymore, and I’ve gotten into the habit of asking if what I’m feeling or thinking is accurate to the situation. It started as something I only did with therapists, but lately it’s spilling out to friends and family. Sometimes I even do it with strangers (which I assume gets me a few weird looks). I guess it’s better than over-reacting to something that’s actually innocuous.

Anyway, enough middle-of-the-night ramblings from me. Hope you all are having a good weekend. Send us good unpacking vibes, and no rain on Sunday or Monday vibes please! The pod leaves again Tuesday, so everything has to be out of it (slight cartoon freak-out moment over how soon that actually is).

Need help getting unstuck. Ideas?

Any words of wisdom or motivation? I can’t seem to get unstuck at the moment. I have not been able to pack in the last 4 days… it’s crunch time. There’s so much to be done, but no amount of talking to myself, lecturing myself, yelling at myself, or trying to express any of this is helping with it right now.
I’ve tried being gentle, I’ve tried being motivational, I’ve tried bribing myself, I’ve even tried guilting myself, but I feel frozen.
Maybe dragging myself out of the house would give me some sort of pattern interrupt to get me moving again? I dunno. Maybe the beach would recharge me?
I can’t talk about being stuck without crying (and that’s if I can even find the words) I can’t pack without crying and freezing… I tried reaching out to a variety of supports without being able to get relief or a break in this heaviness.
I resorted to leaving TM a message asking for some support. It was a boundary I didn’t want to cross, but I’m running out of ideas. I told her that I wouldn’t pick up if she called back so that she wouldn’t have to waste more than a few moments on a message. The other reason behind that is that I’m not confident of being able to actually speak with her if I answered. As soon as I open my mouth, I start to cry. Even with L last night, I couldn’t get words out around any of this…
I hate all the emotions this anniversary brings up. I hate that it’s now compounded by the move (or the move is made more difficult by this anniversary. Both are accurate ways of looking at it)…
I just need to be able to function long enough to get things done. I need something to work to make me functional.

Another Friday night, another fun journal class

I may or may not kick myself tomorrow because I may or may not have purchased another art journal tonight. There was a sale though. And a coupon. So… yeah. I had to get it. It was way cheap! (I’m really just trying to justify the expense when I had no business spending. We need to save every penny for this move…).

Anyway, went to the class tonight. We played with spray inks. While I miss having the longer class to be able to do something more than a background, I think I like what came out of today.

The first page was done with dylusion & Heidi Swapp spray inks using commercially available stencils. The second page was done using the home-made fabric dye inks and my fall-back black printer ink with a home-made mask and some commercially available stencils. I really actually like both pages a lot. The second page got more attention tonight, so it was a bit more finished. Not at all sure what I will be putting on the blue/purple/yellow page. I’m sure I will figure it out though.

wpid-20150612_204702.jpg wpid-20150612_213110.jpg



The nipples were totally an accident, but they had us cracking up ūüėČ I had picked up the mask and just wasn’t able to move it from the page fast enough for it to not drip… :shrugz: it works.

I’m really going to miss my friend and her classes. I was struggling with body memories today. The usual distractions at home did not help. Going to the class and engaging not only with the art, but also the others in the class helped lessen them however. They returned when I returned home but they were not as intense. I’m going to have to make sure I find something like this up north. It won’t be the same, but hoping it will help just the same.


I forgot my new insurance has high copays. Trying to check with the hospital¬†whether or not they can bill me for that. If they can’t, it’s no longer an option. I can’t afford $120-$250 a week for a program (depending on the number of days and level of programming, I’d either be paying $40/day for 3-4 days of¬†IOP¬†or $50/day for 5 days of PHP)… I can barely scrounge even $20 at the end of the month after bills and obligations, forget what it would cost for treatment.

I had hoped the hospital program would call me back today so I could cancel early if it’s going to cost that much, but the lady didn’t return my call. She’s supposed to call tomorrow to confirm my attendance on Monday, so I will ask her then.

On a positive note, L signed the lease for the apartment earlier today. It’s more and more official. I need to start getting moving on packing and paring down our stuff…


Themes much? (Art Journal)

Done over the last few days. I’m obsessed with the pebeo mirror foil… and needing some reminders apparently.
Also, new gelato colors are wonderful.



thoughts on today’s session: authenticity

I told TM today that I wasn’t sure if what I remembered happening actually happened. I wish I could remember what she had said in response. I know it was something along the lines of “you wouldn’t have the reactions you do if it wasn’t real…” Something about having the physical reactions I do meaning it’s not just my over-active imagination… but I can’t quite remember what she said.

Only I really don’t want to believe them. I’d much rather they not be true. It would be easier if I was just a really messed-up person with really messed-up fantasies. ūüė¶

I should have remembered it before now, but then again, I don’t remember much of¬†anything…

I managed to tell her how depressed I’ve been. We talked a bit about authenticity and congruencey in life. We came up with a social media analogy: the stuff everyone gets to see is the “Facebook” version of me – the smiles, the functioning, the “I’m fine.” The stuff that is closer to reality is the everything not in the pictures. This is true for everyone, including TM…


She was originally just going to check in over the phone, but I told her it was useless: I suck on the phone. So then she offered an additional session… I didn’t like that idea much better either. I know she is busy re-locating her office at the end of this week. She had also suggested that the next session be a “happy” one… I wanted to ask her if she comprehended how invalidating that was after our conversation on being authentic at least in therapy, but I didn’t say anything. I think I’m just going to cancel the additional session and ask if she’s still ok with a check-in call. It’ll just be me saying everything’s fine, but I won’t feel so guilty taking up as much of her time.

I dunno…

I think I just want to hide. If I could spend the next week totally unconscious, that would be fine. I think she was trying to give me permission to hide away for a while, but I didn’t know how to tell her I’ve already been hiding away unless I have to be out of the house for something. It’s not helping me recharge my strength, it just feels safer that way.


I called her later and left a message canceling the in-person appointment… I really don’t want to be that bothersome.

“50 shades” controversy, & the lasting effects of childhood trauma

So, after first writing this up almost a month ago, I have yet to put more effort into it. I had contacted a few people claiming to be connected to the BDSM¬†community in an effort to get “honest” perspectives. Publically, they strongly supported the notion that the community is respectful and vigilant of “safety”. Privately however, some denounced the community as seedy and very unsafe. I was warned to “stay far away” from anything even remotely having to do with BDSM, including looking further into the different aspects of it. The few people I know personally and trust, and who also have some experience with the community express otherwise: that their experiences have been safe and respectful… This has me confused. I am more apt to believe the people I know in real life, so I guess I will go with that… Continue reading

2 days; polar opposites

today is not a good day. as manageable as yesterday was, today is wholly intolerable. ended up calling TM but not being able to verbalize what I needed to when she returned my call. so tired of this crazy struggle. wish it just settled. tempted to leave her a message tonight, thank her for helping me, bow out of therapy, and then (so she doesn’t have to listen to it, but so I can get it away from me) vent the contents of the body memories… so tired of all this.

not sure what will help me more: continue the cm marathon, crying (if I could figure out how to allow myself to do it), take something to be able to sleep, call the agency hotline, or… I dunno. something to make things better.

keep trying to remind myself that the bad days come and go just like the better ones… hard to remember at the moment.

wish I could cry…

Monica’s closet

You know that episode of Friends where Chandler finds out about Monica’s closet? To the outside world, Monica is organized and together. She has her moments, but she’s actually quite OCD about her house being clean and perfect. Everyone believes this and goes with it. That’s how they categorize her. Then one day, I think it’s Chandler who stumbles upon a locked door hidden away in the apartment. He breaks into it to find a cartoon-esque closet packed to the hilt with stuff. It’s disorganized and messy and you can’t pull any single thing out without everything else falling out behind it. Chandler is shocked, and Monica freaks out that he’s found her secret…

Going to therapy is like Monica walking Chandler to this closet, telling him to watch as she opens it, pulls something out, then gets covered in the contents… and then Chandler has to leave for work, and Monica’s left stuffing things back into the closet by herself (totally frazzled, overwhelmed, and vulnerable).

Sometimes I wonder why I bother, yet I keep going back hoping this time I’ll get more help with it all. I hope that this time I’ll be able to finally organize things so they are not as overwhelming… coz even if I hid the closet away behind locks and chains and furniture, I would know it’s there and is a complete mess…

I don’t stand up for myself

It’s a chronic thing…
Tonight, I took a risk and tried to talk to someone at a hotline about stuff that I have not yet been able to talk about. I had to wait a while for a response, so I took the time to type out what was in my head. Once they responded, I checked that it was OK for me to talk about this stuff. I asked specifically if I could dump something heavy on them, and not just be alone in it. The person hesitated and I offered to leave the chat, but he invited me to vent. So I copy/pasted what I had written out while I was waiting. Then I panicked. I triggered myself when I put that stuff in writing and sent it off for someone else to see. I asked that he not read what I had typed out, and I apologized over and over again. I then recognized I was freaking out, and told him as much. I apologized for that too.

I’m not sure what part of our exchange made him think I had been there to talk about this before, but something did. He became curt and asked if I needed additional resources to the ones they had “already given [me]”. He sent off one link and then advised me to contact a local resource. I was taken aback. I didn’t remember talking to anyone about this before, let alone any time recently. I read anger and frustration into his sudden change in response. That impression sent me off on a triggered set of responses: I apologized for wasting their time and left. Emotionally, I shut down. I started questioning my memory around things. I wondered (then panicked) if I had lost time again (hasn’t happened since termination with De, but even then there were signs that made me aware I had. This time there was nothing I could point to as evidence, though now that I think about it, hours have seemed to fly by at times. One minute I’m waking up and going about my morning routine, the next thing I know it’s 2 or 3 in the afternoon and I can’t tell you what happened in between). Anyway, I didn’t challenge what I believed to be a false assumption, I just went with it. I gave up my chance to find some relief from the thoughts weighing on me because I run at the slightest hint of rejection or annoyance with me. It’s always better to run and hide than face pissing someone off. So I ran. I closed the chat and shut down completely. I felt like shit because I thought maybe I had forgotten that I was there already. Maybe I was there and was a jerk. Maybe they were correct…

Once I finally calmed down from the multiple-trigger frenzy in my head, my instinct was to go back and correct the assumption: to tell them they had me confused with someone else, as I had not been to that chat in months… I wanted to do this because I felt the need to head-off any anger or ill will. But the opportunity was gone. The misunderstanding happened and I had no way to undo it. That triggered me again. When misunderstandings happen, I need to try to make them right if I can (though even that can get awkward). Generally though, very few misunderstandings lend themselves to resolution. This whole freezing and not being able to stand up for myself in the moment gets in the way of a lot.

TL and I had tried to work on it in therapy. Many conversations were had around misunderstandings and how to handle them. Many conversations surrounded miscommunication on my part, and trying to develop the ability to go back and make things right… I was finally getting better at it with TL (I could bring it up in later sessions either by writing it out or talking about it), but it clearly didn’t get to a point of resolution. I learned way too early that any attempt at correcting a misunderstanding was “talking back” (my aunt’s favorite phrase was “shht! Don’t talk back”). Explanations were not to be had. Rewording things and trying to express myself better a second time was unheard of. TL and I had many conversations around that also. It often took me too long to respond to her or try to spit something out so we would move on to other topics. I would consider my words very carefully. There were several “false starts” to my speaking. I would stumble over my words and get flustered. A lot of things went unsaid until I could later find the courage to print out my journal entries and hand them to her… I took blame for anything that was misunderstood, and I apologized profusely for it. I think by the third go-around on the topic, she started asking if misunderstandings really were that bad, and if someone misunderstood me, was it always my fault in miscommunication, or was it the other person just not paying attention or not understanding what I was saying. She even unintentionally modeled handling misunderstandings when she didn’t explain something well a few sessions later and I became confused. She tried to impress on me that going back to explain things again was very possible and not the end of the world… she also tried to get me to see that the error in communication was not always my fault (I have a tendency to take the blame whether I’m the one doing the speaking or the listening)…

Anyway. I guess the work we did on it helped some because I wanted to go back and correct the guy’s assumption. Unfortunately, I was too late and had already ended the chat. It’s a learning process. As De said to me a few times, “this took a lifetime to learn. [I’m] not going to unlearn it overnight.”

not finding it

In my peruse through the archives the other day, I stumbled upon a post I wanted to share with TL, but I didn’t write down the title… Now I can’t find it or remember which one it was. I can’t even really remember what was in it other than it related to my “inner crew”. I hadn’t used very good tagging or categorization when I first started this thing, so I really don’t know how to find it. I know I had checked the stats for the day and clicked on some of the more popular titles, but then I went off after other suggested posts at the bottom of some of the entries… I wish I had printed it that day, or at least sent myself a link. :/

Anyone have an easy way to go back and tag, categorize, and otherwise organize almost 1000 entries? I get really overwhelmed trying to back-track and tag/categorize my entries when I do start. I have gone back and done it to a lot of them, but clearly not all… :sigh:

There’s Nothing Selfish About Suicide

From huffpost.com article. Couldn’t have said this part better myself…

Suicide is a lot of things, but selfish isn’t one of them.

Suicide is a decision made out of desperation, hopelessness, isolation and loneliness. The black hole that is clinical depression is all-consuming. Feeling like a burden to loved ones, feeling like there is no way out, feeling trapped and feeling isolated are all common among people who suffer from depression.

People who say that suicide is selfish always reference the survivors. It’s selfish to leave children, spouses and other family members behind, so they say. They’re not thinking about the survivors, or so they would have us believe. What they don’t know is that those very loved ones are the reason many people hang on for just one more day. They do think about the survivors, probably up until the very last moment in many cases. But the soul-crushing depression that envelops them leaves them feeling like there is no alternative. Like the only way to get out is to opt out. And that is a devastating thought to endure.

Until you’ve stared down that level of depression, until you’ve lost your soul to a sea of emptiness and darkness… you don’t get to make those judgments


weird space

I’m in a strange head-space. ¬†I’m not quite sure how to describe it… maybe floaty, disconnected, like my head was a balloon bobbing around. I’m not so much disconnected from my body as disconnected from everything around me. ¬†So maybe the whole of me feels like a balloon bopping around… and like there’s a thin barrier between me and everything around me; a gossamer curtain or something equally wispy and blowy.

I’m tired but I’m not. I should probably go to bed, but I don’t want to. ¬†It’s the beginnings of the “before bed panic” I sometimes get. I’m also not feeling the dark at the moment. Earlier mom was giving me a hard time about all the lights being on, but I really don’t want to be in the dark at the moment.

I was trying to be creative again today, but nothing happened. ¬†I had a ton of half-formed ideas, but nothing panned out. I just sat there staring at everything. I kept taking out stuff to start a project, look at it for several minutes, then put it away again. I couldn’t bring myself to start anything or to get a better idea of what direction I wanted to go in with anything. I wanted a beer, but there’s none in the house I would drink (and it would be shitty of me to waste the last of mom’s beer, as I would likely open it, take three sips, deem it gross, and dump it)… I’m not in the mood for anything harder, so I have not had anything to drink tonight. I just really want a beer; something darker and sweet and malty… no such luck.

There’s other stuff I want to do too, but I have to be good. I really want Friday to roll around. I had told L that I was frustrated it was only Tuesday today. I want to get to the art journal workshop on Thursday, but I also really want to get to therapy on Friday. ¬†I’m not quite sure why other than there’s a list of questions/thoughts I want to bring up to TL. It’s stuff I want her to know, or stuff I want to gauge her reaction towards. I should have told her that the social stuff was not what I was looking for, that I needed the therapeutic aspect also. But there are no groups around that I fit into. The agency no longer has either it’s drop-in women’s group, or the women’s therapy group. There are no appropriate groups I have found online for myself elsewhere either. I really needed her to help me get connected to something I can’t easily find myself online… The social stuff is taken care of. I have MeetUp, I have a (very) few friends to hang with… I have the social thing mostly covered. I need the therapy thing too. I don’t know how to tell her this. I feel like an ass for not being able to tell her when she asked last week. It’s one of the things on my list, but I am not sure I will be able to read it to her; too much of feeling like an idiot… There’s some other stuff I really need to talk to her about too, but I have to figure out how she will take it. I need to know she won’t freak out about it, or run away from me for it. I really need her to be a safe go-to person for now… gotta love that urgency and neediness. o_O



I feel like I have nothing useful or “interesting” to say lately. ¬†I keep going back to the thought of really not liking TL and not sure I can work with her. ¬†I’ll give tomorrow’s session a go, and see where we stand from there, but I still get the impression that I am a nuisance to her. ¬†I don’t want to disclose anything else to her. ¬†I don’t want to talk about anything meaningful. ¬†My walls have gone up hard and fast in reference to her. ¬†I’m not sure why…

Actually, I think the walls around my inner self have gone up hard and fast. ¬†I’m blocking it out because it doesn’t feel like I have meaningful support right now. ¬†Without that, I’ll fall apart easily. ¬†It’s scary inside right now, but I can’t access it, so I can’t describe it or know what to do to change it… I really miss De right now….

Learning is tough

I hate myself right now. I had the opportunity to ask for help, and I stumbled. She asked what I needed, and all I could say was to know if she had earlier time this week. I couldn’t admit to struggling. I couldn’t admit to floundering with everything. I couldn’t form the words needed to be able to ask for extra support, even if it would not be something she could provide…

I can’t do this. Daily I fight the urge to down all my pills, or slice my body to shreds. I talk myself out of careless driving, and other destructive actions. I was too scared that she would suggest the er. I was too scared that I’d wind up hospitalized… I don’t want to wind up hospitalized. I don’t need physical containment, but I know that’s what it would sound like. I need support in figuring out how to turn the overwhelming into something I can handle. Except I don’t know how to say that. I know how to say I’m falling apart; not how to say I’m totally overwhelmed and need help with emotional containment… I still have learning to do. And learning sucks.

Healing is not easy

There are a lot of bumps on the road to recovery. There are lots of slips and slides. Most of the bumps and slips are my own doing. Even with the best of intentions, healing is not easy…

I find myself gaining insight, but unable (or unwilling?) to make changes based on that insight. I see the destructive path some behaviors are taking, but I continue because it’s easier than fighting to make new behaviors work. Fear immobilizes me. I’m afraid of the outcome of trying something new. What if it’s not as effective? What if I can’t figure out how to make it work and the agony is prolonged? What if I keep screwing up my words and I’m continually misunderstood until I can’t make any more efforts to try? What if I keep fucking up? …because I keep fucking up even at things I should be proficient in, forget trying to succeed at something new.

I’m floundering. I’m struggling to figure out how to get needs met that I can’t even reliably identify. All I know is I need support. I don’t know what it looks like. I don’t know how to get it. I tried asking TL for more support, but like I often do with words, I must have screwed it up. I got a week and a half between sessions instead of extra time in the week. I’m just now figuring out that I’m being extra hard on myself because of this. It wasn’t conscious, but I’m “punishing” myself for my lack of competence… My self-talk is harsher than I normally engage in. My temper is hair-trigger. I’m eating and drinking things I wouldn’t normally allow myself all in the same day. It’s making me physically sick. I’ve even considered eating meat again (first time in 2 decades) because I know it would make me sick. I’m all about punishing myself because “I should know better” and be able to pull myself out of this by myself. I shouldn’t need to rely on strangers to hold my hand through the pain. I shouldn’t need to be this dependant on others. I shouldn’t need

Back to needs… I saw a post today on Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.

According to him, there are basic needs all humans must have met in order to move through life. I have a few of those going: food, shelter… but I have to stop short of safety. Physically, I’m generally safe (except from myself). Emotionally however, I’m finding very little safety either within myself or from others. It’s something I struggle with daily. It’s something I started to have with De, but that got pulled. I would love to say I have it with my family, but triggers are rampant. I’ve traumatized too many people, and been too traumatized by people. I constantly see hurt and threat around every bend, even if it’s created by me…

The hunt for med records (fun times)

I decided to try to track down my complete medical records for my own information. I’m tired of having incomplete answers for new providers when they ask what had worked or not worked and why. The problem is, when you have a mental health diagnosis of any kind,¬† it’s arbitrarily up to whomever holds the records whether or not you are able to even see said records, forget get a copy of them. The excuse is that it “may negatively impact [my] mental health” to see some of the information.¬† I understand concerns around information, but I would prefer that determination to be made by myself when I am trying to coordinate my own care. So I’m sitting here in the social security office hoping that the manager decides I’m ok to get a copy of my full records.¬† I know why I applied for disability. I know my list of diagnoses over the years, I just want to be able to advocate for effective treatment… and hopefully I can get to a place where I can reliably work again.¬† But in order to do that, I need to get some more intensive and specific treatment going. :sigh: such a process.

I think regardless of one’s diagnosis, a person should always have the right to see their full medical record… but I guess that’s just my opinion. Going on hour 2 waiting at the local social security office… (Trying to also figure out what in my record allowed them to so quickly approve me for ssdi, as most people I have spoken to were denied the first few times around. I’m certainly happy they did it, but what in my paperwork made it so glaringly obvious that I can’t work at this time, other than my millions of hospitalizations and spotty recent work history)…

UPDATE: so after 2.5 hours of waiting, I was able to get the paperwork going for them to make a disc of all my records used in my determination, plus anything they may have gotten afterwards. ¬†They did not seem to give me a hassle around the request, and the information should be ready for pick up by Monday or so. ¬†I hope it will be the complete records as they have them, and hope that it will help me some in figuring out next steps for treatment. ¬†I’m really tired of this emotional roller-coaster. ¬†I want to find something that works, and throw myself head-long into it so that I can move past all this and get back to living… because this limbo is exhausting.


yesterday’s appointment with TL was much better than the first. ¬†There was a ton of anxiety leading up to it, but I sat it through and met with her (albeit about 30 minutes late because there was a miscommunication amongst office staff). ¬†I was able to give her the stuff I had meant to read her that first time around, and then we talked about some more history (specifically, the brief, cliff-notes version of the stories behind the flashbacks). ¬†She was able to make me feel a bit more comfortable in sitting with her. ¬†I can see her being a bit intense at times, but hopefully we will fall into a balance there. ¬†She was quick to tell me that we didn’t have to talk about what it was that was bothering me, but I found my voice enough to ask for a few more minutes to build up to talking. She seemed to take it in stride.

The hour went by too quickly again, but I let her keep the list. ¬†I hope it helps some. We also switched up the schedule some. ¬†I was going to ask if she had anything earlier in the day (because waiting all day builds too much anxiety), and she was hoping for something earlier also, and on a different day. ¬†We settled on middle-of-the-day Thursday, though that will mean¬†a week and a half between session at a time I should be asking for shorter times between session… Oh well.

I left there emotionally raw and super tired. ¬†I came home with enough energy to fix the bed (had started washing the sheets earlier in the day) and collapse into it. ¬†I took something to help me calm down and sleep, and I am still feeling the effects at 1:30 the next afternoon… I guess this is ok for now. ¬†I guess being drugged-up and only partially feeling the flashbacks is better than the alternative of full-on flashbacks all day… I really need things to change though. ¬†I really need something helpful to get me through all this because it’s exhausting in so many ways…

More insomnia again

Feels like the story of my life.¬† It’s 4 am and I’m still not sleeping. My anxiety is high and I suddenly don’t remember how to deal with it. The stupidest little things trigger me. I startle at any sudden noise. I just want to cry, but I can’t seem to. I keep going through the basic grounding De reminded me of today: I’m an adult.¬† It’s 2014. I’m 35 years old. We have 4 dogs in the house. I am free to leave at any time, for any reason or length of time… I’ve gone through this list close to 3 dozen times tonight. My head still is not stopping. I can’t shake the feeling of being a kid. I can’t get the memory of the anger out of my head. I’m trying to just breathe, but unless I’m totally focused on it, I forget to breathe. Back to the list: I’m an adult. It’s 2014. I’m 35 years old.¬† I’m married to L. I can leave the house any time I want, I’m free to come and go as I please. We have 4 dogs. It’s 2014.¬† I’m an adult… but then I forget to breathe, so back to concentrating on my breath. I do that again for too long and I need to ground again… sleep doesn’t fit into this equation at the moment. I wish it would. I keep yawning. My eyes are tired, my head is tired. But I close my eyes and I’m 14 again. So they fly open once more. Will this cycle end? Can I maybe get some sleep tonight?
Just breathe. Gotta remember to breathe…

A day in bed

I had called De earlier today. I was a mess and wanted her to read something on my blog to her.¬† I’m glad she had time to read it with me still on the phone. We talked a bit and she was so nice.¬† I give her no reason to be nice to me. In fact I give her every reason to hate me, yet she says she won’t hate me. She talked to me as I cried, and I could do nothing but whisper my answers to her (I’m surprised she could make out what I was saying)… Talking to her made me feel a bit better.¬† She encouraged me to do specific things to help get through the day. And she made me promise to show up to tomorrow’s appointment… I had asked that it be our last (because I feel like I’m just crumbling and it would be easier to do without the expectation to show up to her office twice a week).¬† I think she may have figured that out because she said she still wants me to come until our last appointment. She also wants me to follow-through on the intake I got at another agency for Monday… I just don’t want to bother anyone else with the mess that is me at the moment. I know this is just me feeling very worthless at the moment. I know this will pass, but it has a weight anchored in my chest today. And I want to just stay in bed (and maybe cry if I could find the courage to do it again).
The flashbacks have slowed to just intrusive memories today, without the full virtual reality effect. I still feel the body memories, but they are not as strong as yesterday.¬† I’m quite ready to be done with all this ptsd and trauma crap, I’m cooked on it.

“Surviving” (post link)

…why is it that we are shamed not only by those perpetrating the abuse, but also those that don’t want to bear witness to it? ¬†“Surviving” is so well-written in its brutal honesty… what happens to those of us who survive whatever degree of abuse we endure? ¬†We are labeled “impossible” and “worthless” by the system and by society that has made a choice to ignore the conditions of survival.

I really struggle with not being able to speak about what I endured. ¬†There is so much to the foundations of my shame. ¬†One phrase that always echos in my head is one my dad said often: “what happens in the family stays in the family” ¬†It screamed in my head as I was telling De about some things yesterday. ¬†His voice thundered in my memory as I was suddenly hiding under the bed again, terrified that he was coming into my room… The memory drowned out De’s voice. ¬†The memories to follow sent shudders through me, and yet I couldn’t tell De how loud my head was in the moment. ¬†I couldn’t give voice to the full-on virtual reality playing behind my eyes. I couldn’t even tell her I was lost in the memory. I noticed my mouth moving and speaking to her, but I was hiding under my bed again. G had just had a huge blow-out with mom, and I had run to hide. ¬†I tried to take the dog with me, but she stayed with mom… I don;t know how long I was hiding, but I do remember my brother coming into my room looking for me because the house was so quiet. ¬†I screamed and jumped when I saw his feet from under the bed, I thought he was G… I scared my poor brother. ¬†He had been at a friend’s house while hell broke out that night. ¬†He was spared. ¬†Mom got most of it… and the dog, she got a lot of it… G would kick her just because he could, because he was mad and needed to hurt the thing that everyone loved more than they loved him… and she just took it… :(…

Why is it that society underscores what our abusers tell us?

(With the way some of this stuff slams me, I do not know how my mom survived… I just watched my dad, but she was on the receiving end of so much more… I don’t know how it hasn’t crushed her. ¬†She has some incredible strength…)

Loss in any form is difficult, especially when you have not dealt with the past ones yet.

So I’ve had a few hours to sit with the concept of De leaving the agency. ¬†I had cried about it (yup, actual tears spilling down my face. Not just tearing up, but real crying complete with gross boogers). ¬†I was somewhat able to “talk” to L about it. ¬†I have thought about it, and processed it, and moved past the anger (it was fleeting). ¬†I’m in a weird flat place right now. If I think too hard or too long about it, I will cry again (have I mentioned I hate crying?). ¬†So I’m concentrating on little things. ¬†I’m concentrating on typing my words correctly (I’m sure there will be many mistakes, and I suck at proof-reading, always have). ¬†I’m concentrating on keeping the dogs from going nuts because they are tired and want to get to bed. ¬†I am taking breaks to take them outside one by one so I can finally put the boys to sleep. ¬†I was concentrating on listening to my mom as she talked about how we may go about fixing the fridge. ¬†I’m concentrating on the decision-making process of whether or not to start into Game of Thrones again tonight, or go with something easier, like Orange is the New Black, or Grey’s Anatomy or Dexter. ¬†I’m concentrating on wanting to find a way to express myself either through art or writing, but certainly no more crying.

I’ve been able to formulate and articulate to L that this overwhelming loss I feel at the termination with De is really the compilation of losses that I have yet to deal with. ¬†It goes back decades. ¬†It’s disproportionate to the relationship because it is so much more than just this one relationship. It’s the loss of friends and family and memories and innocence. ¬†It’s the loss of supports and home-bases. ¬†It’s the loss of a sense of security. ¬†And it’s the premature loss of someone I had expected to lose, but managed to trust anyway. ¬†I am not good with loss. ¬†I never have been. ¬†Sure I can smile through changes, but the tears always glisten in my eyes. ¬†This time they broke free. ¬†I don’t know if was because of how worn-down I feel lately, the creeping depression, or the fact that De was the first (only) person to hear some really heavy stuff. I was prepared to walk away from this relationship at the time of my move. ¬†I was expecting it to help keep me balanced as my stress rose. ¬†Just last week I had asked her for more support. ¬†This week it’s all going away much faster than I had thought. ¬†It’s pointless to try to find another therapist for those last 6 weeks, so I guess I will have to just figure it out on my own (though I am toying with the idea of trying to get a referral to someone for those 6 weeks)… I know it will be ok, because it always is in the end, but right now it feels really shitty.

When she first told me, I couldn’t exactly speak. I was too busy trying to hold back the tears and the sobbing because I knew it was disproportionate to the situation. ¬†My tears didn’t listen to my insistence. ¬†They spilled down my cheeks anyway. ¬†When she asked me to articulate what was going through my head at the moment, all I could muster was a half-whispered “whatever” through clenched teeth. ¬†I was afraid that if I opened my mouth more than that to speak, I would either sob uncontrollably and loudly, or I would speak out of my fear-driven (and old) anger. ¬†She challenged my “whatever” by saying that she knew this was hard for me, and she knew it wasn’t “whatever”. ¬†All I could do was shake my head as more tears streamed down my face. ¬†I couldn’t look at her, so I looked everywhere else in the office and just repeated “whatever” one more time. ¬†We sat in silence for a bit longer as I looked everywhere but where she was sitting. ¬†More rogue tears. ¬†She asked if I could tell her what I was thinking, if self-harm urges came up. ¬†I realised then that my head was frantically backpedaling in an attempt to halt all thought (much like pedaling backward on a BMX bike to brake). ¬†There was a forced-stillness in my head. ¬†Conscious thoughts had stopped. ¬†All efforts were being diverted¬†to stave off any melt-down beyond what had happened. ¬†It struck me as odd that there were no self-harm thoughts or suicidal thoughts. ¬†There just were no thoughts. ¬†She eased into a verbal safety contract, and was able to joke around it, which helped pull me back into the room and back to functioning. When I stumbled over concepts as I tried to agree to what she was asking, she helped out by saying “Whatever you need to agree to to get back here in one piece next week is what we are going to agree to”. ¬†In the past, she had always wanted specifics, but I don’t think I could have given those to her in the moment. ¬†I think I recognized a bit of freedom in that change (and I think I just now recognized how the weight was off her this session. ¬†It was familiar in that I had felt it after I had given notice at the group home, but still had to deal with the kids for 2 more weeks. I no longer cared about the strict rules of etiquette because I was leaving soon. I was able to be more genuine, and the girls had picked up on it with me. ¬†I¬†think that’s what I felt from De today. ¬†It was a¬†freedom from the pressure to be “perfect” in the role… It’s funny how some guidelines are in place to help us do our jobs better, but in the end we are burdened with the pressure to stay within the boundaries – we lose our genuineness…) but I digress. ¬†We chatted about other things for the remainder of the session. She had asked something about letting “us” know if I ever figured out a way to apply my knowledge-base in psych to myself. ¬†I think she was going to go somewhere else with that, but she stopped herself. ¬†I talked about my complete inability to have access to both my emotional and intellectual sides at the same moment. ¬†We talked about this blog, and how it had been born of the idea of being able to look at all of it over time (the more professional side of me when I am in a more emotional space, and the more emotional side of me when I am locked in professional mode). ¬†I told her about an early entry on the concept of ¬†“attention-seeking” and how it is not always as sinister-ly manipulative as the field makes it out to be… ¬†I kept a close eye on the clock because I had brought my Wreck This Journal with me to show her. ¬†With about 5 minutes left, I changed the topic to that. ¬†She always seems genuinely interested in what I bring in, but this time there was something else again. ¬†I showed her the piece with the prompt to “make a paper chain“. ¬†She seemed excited about it. ¬†It was weird because the excitement was different… I’m not sure how to describe it. ¬†She said something along the lines of wishing she could show it to other people because it conveyed so much more than just words could. The way she said it made me feel like she was trying to make a point to someone. ¬†I had wanted to tell her she could (I may have imagined it, but it looked like she was ready to get up and walk out of her office with the book. She scootched forward in her chair as she had said that about showing it to others), but I was caught off guard. ¬†The words “you could” spun around in circles in my brain, but never made it to my tongue… We moved on to scheduling after she looked a bit more at my book. ¬†She pondered the best way to fit in the second appointment. ¬†I put my vote in for Tuesday & Friday citing my “OCD-ish tendencies” for wanting to space out the days a bit more. She actually laughed and said she prefered that for the same reason (more genuine-ness). ¬†So I will be seeing her twice a week for the next few weeks until she leaves. ¬†We will be figuring out the content of our sessions as we go. ¬†She checked-in about the possibility of doing more Duckboy work on Tuesday, and would I be ok if she sprung it on me that day. ¬†I told her I was open to whatever, but that I needed her to lead if it was the Duckboy stuff because I feel totally lost on what to do with it. ¬†I think she was still deciding on how to approach Tuesday. ¬†There are a lot of days between now and Tuesday, so my opinion may change, but for now I’m ok with pushing the assault topics. ¬†I guess it depends on how far I get with this internal processing of her leaving instead of me leaving. ¬†I may decide by Tuesday tha I really need to talk to her about some of this stuff and whatever else it will bring up.

muddling through

It’s a rough transition. ¬†Both L and I are struggling with the concept of being separated. ¬†Both of us are struggling with our environments and our inner demons. ¬†But both of us also seem to be finding a way through. ¬†I wrote a really long but honest blog to De today. ¬†It helped a lot to simply know that she will know all of that, to know that I was honest and putting things out there in hopes of getting support. ¬†It’ll be an uncomfortable session on Friday (because a lot of it is surrounded by huge amounts of shame), but at least I’m being honest and trying to figure things out.

I’m very aware of my neediness and my mal-adaptive thought patterns, but I am having trouble changing them all by myself. ¬†Awareness is the first step though. ¬†I am hoping she can help me with the changing piece. ¬†I was able to ask for some specific things directly for probably the first time ever. ¬†I was able to identify specific things, how they would help, and what I would like to ask from her around them. ¬†That’s not an easy thing for me. ¬†I often have trouble identifying and admitting to my needs. ¬†I think it comes from a combination of having them either flat-out denied (by being told that they are not actually my needs, and my needs are something else), or having serious consequences for voicing them. ¬†I can remember a number of times when my opinions were denied and corrected (some as recent as a few weeks ago). It’s an interesting dynamic that happens in my family. ¬†I will say something along the lines of “I need to talk to someone about X” only to get the response: “No. That won’t help. You need to do Y” ¬†Even if I give concrete examples of how Y has been counter-productive, it is insisted that I really do want Y, just afraid to say it. When someone hears things like that often enough (and the person is forceful enough), they learn to change their desires to fit what is being insisted upon. ¬†I guess this doesn’t happen so much if you have no history of abuse, but it certainly happens with me. ¬†I lose the drive to argue when no argument in the world would help my case.



Suicide Stories

another really good blog on telling stories, being heard, and the stigma of suicide… I will need to look further into the study mentioned, because I would really like to be able to connect with others who have tried. There are parts of my experience I rarely speak about (even with a therapist) simply because no one wants to talk to me about it… in treatment circles, you are discouraged from talking about specifics and emotions during the act, but before and after are ok to talk about… they are missing a huge part of that story.

recovery network: Toronto

Slowly waking from a science-induced slumber, clinical and academic practice is slowly reawakening to the importance of story in a human life. There is much talk these days of the importance of ‚Äúnarrative‚ÄĚ. Narrative is just a fancy word for story. Who among us ¬†sits round a campfire telling ‚Äúnarratives‚ÄĚ? People tell stories: their own story, old stories new stories, made up stories, true stories and everything in between stories. Telling stories is what humans have done since, well, since there have been humans. So how come its taken so long for medicine and clinical practice to wake up to the usefulness? Well, it seems that someone had to come up with a fancy word for ‚Äústory‚ÄĚ : ‚Äúnarrative and, ¬†someone else had to append [fancy word for stick on the end of] ¬†that other fancy word required to legitimize any thing in medicine ‚Äď therapy. As Robin Mckenzie‚Ķ

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“One does not become enlightened by imagining figures of light, …”

I like this. we are so often told to be mindful of the moment, but remain silent in our pain. It’s in our pain that we need to speak out and have someone share it. I even struggle with this in therapy lately. De isn’t big on talking about what’s eating me, just how to cope with it. Sometimes that’s helpful, but a lot of the time I need to be able to give voice to what’s inside. It took me so long to be able to talk about things, then I get a therapist who focuses on the distractions and coping skills without much energy devoted to just being in the moment of the struggle. I know she has helped me learn some invaluable skills, but at the same time, I feel more alone than I ever have much of the time. My family does not hold a culture of speaking about what bothers you. L tries, but I resist much of the time. It’s so easy to fall back into pushing things away. We need to pay more attention to opening ourselves, to feeling and being less alone in our hurt…

I Dont Want To Talk About It

wolf-howl-silhouette1 ‚Äú‚Ķbut by making the darkness conscious.‚ÄĚ I went to my Men‚Äôs meeting the other morning.¬†¬† As usual it was an interesting place to be.¬†¬† One of my issues with AA is the unwillingness to making the darkness conscious at the meeting level.¬†¬† My wonderful friends who are suffering from the effects of PTSD and other ‚Äúmental health,‚ÄĚ issues express confusion that when they are in meetings and they struggling, most of the other people in the rooms are speaking of gratitude, acceptance and/or tolerance.¬† They ask me and I question also whether the people speaking of gratitude etc. aren‚Äôt just ‚Äúimagining figures of light,‚Ä̬† because they can‚Äôt/won‚Äôt deal with the darkness that they carry.

When I am struggling, and much of the time my depression makes me feel like I am searching for a life raft in the middle of this sea of hopelessness, I have a hard time with…

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Disappointed in myself

Do you ever wonder how you got to a  particular space in life? What triggered the change? What prompted you to think the change was good, or even acceptable?
I realized just moment’s ago that I’m the reason our cat doesn’t want to come home.¬† Somewhere along the way I made it acceptable to be anything but loving. I wasn’t nice to him or kind to him when redirecting his behavior. I listened to someone when they said that fear was the only motivator he would comprehend. I became my father… I know better. I know that fear only motivates resentment and more fear. I know that’s not how people or animals should be treated, and yet I fell into that trap without even thinking about it. Once again, I am a person I despise.
Time to change that. Time to take a hard look at myself and put my foot down with myself. I refuse to continue to be this way. I refuse to have my animals scared of me… I’m sorry kitty. I didn’t mean to be an asshole. I didn’t mean to change into this. I didn’t mean to be my parents (because somewhere along the way my mom picked up my dad’s habits so, she too is like him, despite knowing better)…

internet presence

I had a panic attach. ¬†I searched my name on the internet and found a whole ton of information. ¬†Accurate information. ¬†Complete information. ¬†It scared the crap out of me. ¬†I had always wondered how bitch found me all those times… how can you escape a stalker if all your info is out there for the world to see? ¬†how can I erase it? ¬†oh shit. oh shit. oh shit… someone tell me how to disappear. please?

Every demon has it’s reasons **triggering**

This post has been hanging out in its infancy stages in my draft folder since April… I keep meaning to add to it, to flesh it out, but I have trouble articulating. ¬†I think I am just going to hit post and hope for the best. I know I didn’t say everything I wanted to, but maybe this can be an ongoing thought process. ¬† TRIGGER WARNING for talk of child abuse, sexual assault, domestic violence…

Recently I’ve been seeing that a county in Florida is posting “public service announcement” signs declaring the residence of sexual predators as such. I’m filled with mixed emotions in this. The survivor in me is happy that others will know, but the clinician in me cringes.

As someone effected by sexual violence, I want others to know that it’s not ok if it’s being done to them. It’s not ok to ever be hurt like that. It’s not ok to live with that fear. I want to be able to spot a “predator” from miles away and warn anyone that may come into contact with them. I don’t ever want anyone to go through anything like that again.¬† I want all failsafes in place to forever prevent situations like that. I want that as a professional also. I hate to see clients hurt like that. I want to stop the cycle of abuse and victimization. I want to be out of a job (or the prospect of a job, since I don’t currently work). I understand all too intimately the struggles of victims. I know the emotional torture these situations can bring about. ¬†I know the lasting effects af assault and abuse. ¬†I have taught classes on the effects of trauma. ¬†I have interjected my personal experiences to these theoretical classes. ¬†I can speak with some authority on it, but I wish I couldn’t. So totally I understand the need to point out dangerous people and situations.

The other side of me however, balks at the idea of signs proclaiming the presence of a “sex offender” plastered outside their homes. Don’t get me wrong, I most certainly do not ever want to see anyone else harmed like that, but I also know (from training and experience) that most sex offenders have some sort of trauma history. ¬†Most offenders did not get to the point of harming someone else without first being harmed themselves. ¬†Take the story of Aileen Wuornos¬†(made into a movie, Monster, in 2003). She was one of a handful of female serial killers who murdered men in Florida. ¬†She was tried, found guilty, and executed in 2002. ¬†On the surface, she was a horrifically scary woman who seemed to kill her “johns” for no reason. ¬†But if you dig into her story, you find a scared, damaged little girl who responded to the world in the only way that made sense to her at the time. ¬†No, not all (or any? I can’t remember the full story at the moment) of the men she killed harmed her, but several others did.

I think there’s a very fine line that keeps some victims from becoming perpetrators themselves. ¬†Many of us don’t ever cross that line, but some teeter on the edge, and some do cross it. ¬†And not everyone that crosses that line is dangerous. ¬†I worked in a clinic once where a “sexual predator” was receiving services. ¬†To most people, he was a sick bastard who like to get off under women’s windows, or in the backyard by the kids toys. ¬†He was arrested several times for exposing himself and “voyeurism”. ¬†When he came to the clinic, he was quiet and shy. ¬†He looked and acted more like a wounded animal than anything else. ¬†Once he opened up to his clinician, we quickly figured out why he was doing the things he did. ¬†Initially, all but one of the clinicians that had been asked to work with him had refused to do so. ¬†Because of so many being reluctant to engage the client due to prejudices, his case was used in on-going training everyone at the office was required to attend. ¬†The first training had almost all staff leaving either in tears or in a slight fog. ¬†We were floored by the horrific abuse this man endured as a child. ¬†One of his many punishments was being stripped naked and tied outside by his penis for hours at a time in all sorts of weather, and for seemingly innocuous “transgressions” (eating outside of a meal time, taking more food than allowed, not returning home at the appropriate time, simply existing). ¬†He lived this his entire life. ¬†No one made a move to take the child out of the abusive situation. No one helped him when he was “bad”. In turn, he learned that exposure and sexual discomfort were appropriate punishments for being “bad”, and that being bad could be as simple as thinking the wrong thing, or being early/late by a few minutes. ¬†He learned to punish himself. After he grew up, he would stand outside a family’s home and expose himself. ¬†He would stand there until someone called the police, or until he felt he had been sufficiently punished (sometimes hours in the snow). He replayed the same abuse he grew up with, only we didn’t see that part of his story. ¬†All we saw was “some creep” being inappropriate around families, and it scared us… I still cry thinking of his story.

There’s a huge disparity in the treatment provided to victims vs offenders. ¬†This is evident not only in the way we treat sex offenders, but in the way we treat perpetrators of domestic violence, or anyone in the criminal justice system. ¬†We tend to forget that traumas wound deeply. Sustained traumas or early traumas tend to wound more deeply than later ones, but all of them have long-lasting effects on the people who experience them. ¬†I think a good recent attempt at illustrating this is the Netflix show Orange is the New Black. ¬†While it centers on one woman’s journey through the prison system, it does a good job of telling the stories of others also. ¬†The characters we are introduced to as vile and unsavory turn out to be some really endearing and struggling women. ¬†I don’t like every character on the show, and I don’t agree with all their life choices, but I can understand them. ¬†And the show reminds me to take a breath before judging someone. ¬†I try to let the anger wash over me, but then wash away. ¬†I try to remember this for myself also when I get too down on my actions and behaviors. ¬†I could easily have been one of those perpetrators with a sign in front of my house, but I’m not. ¬†I had the presence of mind (and the support of others) to realize that certain actions are not ok. ¬†I wasn’t pushed as far as some others have been, but that does not mean that if I had been in their exact situation I would have behaved differently. ¬†I still very much struggle with the concept of some of the thoughts I used to have as a child. ¬†It’s something I had only started admitting to De very recently, and only in the most vague sense (there is SO MUCH shame around it). ¬†But I think it’s very important to realize every action or inaction has a reason. The more I learn about trauma and abuse, the more I deal with in my own personal life, the more I begin to think that the “nature” side of the debate is less and less pivotal than the “nurture” side of things. ¬†Yes, there are very much differences in the way people are wired. There are different levels of sensitivity and resilience that have no known root in nurture, but nurture goes a long way in dictating the rest of our lives. ¬†Had I not had the conversations with my mom and aunt that I did as a kid, had I not overheard their conversations, or seen the way they and others reacted to some horrific stuff, I doubt I would have set out on this “different” path than some others who became perpetrators. ¬†I could have easily become the violent and out-of-control “monster” my father was (and still can be). I could have easily been in jail by now, but I’m not. ¬†And I’m thankful for that every day…

I don’t want anyone to think that this blog is meant to advocate no punishment, or no consequences for actions, because that is certainly NOT my intent. ¬†I just want to get wheels turning and people thinking. ¬†I want to advocate compassion in everyday life, and an awareness that sometimes acting out is just the tip of the iceberg. ¬†There are certainly people who are beyond scary. There are people who will likely not benefit from treatment or leniency, but there are also a lot of hurting people out there in the world. ¬†I think we need more compassion for that…

I’m suddenly reminded of a TED talk that I first heard about last year or the year before. ¬†It’s a different way to look at mental illness, and it speaks about “psychosis” with similar insight. It’s definitely worth a listen (or re-listen). Abuse and trauma has long-lasting effects, and maybe as a society, we need to start being more trauma-informed when dealing with perpetrators of abuses and crimes. We certainly need an over-haul to the mental health system in this country.

A tad bit stressed

I’ve done it again; ignored something until it’s too late… now there really isn’t much of a choice. J’s fire that she’s been looking for is firmly lit. We will be moving back up north sooner than expected and under a lot more pressure. This sucks… I’m kicking myself for putting off the asking for help for this long. Now we just have to suck it up and move on. It looks like we will have to re-home two of our pups (one of mom’s and one of our’s), which is totally breaking my heart. I knew we wore out our welcome, but now it’s also our grace period. The house needs to be sold and we will be left with nothing to show for it but more debt. I just want to hide from everything right now (lot of good it’s done so far). Trying not to panic, but not sure how to make things happen. We either find roommates that can cover half the mortgage and stand living here, or we throw in the towel and lose what we have. Pretty shitty choices since I don’t think anyone would want to live here (too many critters, too much stress, too little space)… :/

Finished the piece for sexual assault awareness month.

I finally “finished” the piece I will be giving to De for Sexual Assault Awareness Month. I wanted the background to be different, but the paint and the brush just wasn’t doing what I had hoped.¬† That’s ok though because I actually like it the way it is. I need to spray fixative on it tomorrow before my appointment, but other than that, it’s done. This is the most work I’ve done on any piece yet. I generally give it one go, tweak, then call it a day.¬† It’s unheard of for me to go back and keep trying it over and over again. It’s good practice though. I got to try out a bunch of techniques along the way.
Anyway, here it is:

2014 100-Theme Challenge  11) Shattered (final)

2014 100-Theme Challenge
11) Shattered (final)