Tag Archives: tears

Hell is…

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Went to a figure drawing thing at a local gallery tonight. The model was supposed to be a woman, but she was unable to make it at the last minute. One of the guys that had come to draw offered to model…

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I made it through the first 30 minute pose, but just barely. I focused on the light and the dark trying to draw the model. It was the only reason I was able to do it at all…

At the end of the first pose, I packed up my stuff and left. Tears started forming in my eyes as I walked out… sometime during the first pose, I had text Dr C about it. I was looking for permission to leave. She hadn’t responded at the point that I left, but I had no faith in being able to remain “together” for the other 4 poses. I lucked out with the first one – he had his back to me and I couldn’t see too much. I wasn’t about to push my luck with the other poses.

I fought tears the whole drive home. I couldn’t get the image of the model out of my head, but it wasn’t really the model… I cried harder when the body in my mind’s eye changed…

Dr C finally responded as I was pulling off my exit from the highway… “No, you need to know that you’re free to leave any room with an exposed penis in it.” (I had asked if it was a failure to leave after the first pose)…

L asked why I was home so early (the text that I was leaving early didn’t get to her). I clarified my initial text about the model not being able to make it. She asked if I was ok, and she saw through my fake answer… I wish I could explain what happened internally, but there are no words…

I poured myself a triple glass of whiskey. It’s helped to stifle my triggered reactions and the impulse to shred myself… idgaf that it’s not the greatest coping skill in the world, but I’m not bleeding, so whatever.


Blergh… (ok, honestly, I dunno an adequate word for this feeling/sound… also **POTENTIALLY TRIGGERING – SH, SUI**

I had another session today. I have been feeling so crappy lately, I asked for some extra time after group yesterday…

It was productive (and long). We talked about what’s causing so much anxiety, and what I get stuck on. At one point, I mentioned some of the financial obligations causing stress. She asked if I wanted to take care of the most stressful one there, and she offered to take over the phone if it became too much for me to keep talking. My responsible side kept bugging me to say yes, but my scared little kid side couldn’t move. We talked a bit about that, then she talked me through the phone thing (literally starting with telling me to take my phone out and find the number). Before actually placing the call, I mentioned the correlation with making an arrangement with this company in particular, and a subsequent hospitalization (so far, it’s happened after every time, and I wasn’t sure if I only had the courage to call them in an effort to lessen anything L might have to take care of in my absence, or if calling them triggered a hard and fast spiral)… she said we’d make a plan after the call to get me through the weekend.

The call was uneventful as usual. The lady I spoke with on the phone was professional. An arrangement was made, and I hung up. Almost instantly, the berating voices started screaming in my head “I’m worthless. I’m a piece of shit. I should have my shit together. I’m a failure. Why can’t I amount to anything? What a waste of space!…” and many more unkind things. Tears started spilling from my eyes, and I managed to choke out that this is what always happens after calling them. About 30 different self-destruct plans flashed through my head. In an instant, I assessed each for viability. More tears flowing unchecked from my eyes. I don’t really remember what else was said, but I was able to communicate the self-hatred and hopelessness.

I guess I started demolishing my soda can because she asked if the pieces I was playing with were sharp enough to hurt myself with. I was a bit taken aback. I’d never consciously self-harm in front of anyone, let alone in her office (it’s a safe space… though I must admit she’s pointed it out to me in the past when I didn’t realize I was clawing my arms during session).  Anyway, we talked a bit more, and she started saying something about me not being bad, and being allowed to make mistakes and ask for leniency. I can’t remember exactly what the words were, but they triggered a flashback… I just cried on the couch and tried to become as small as possible. Part of me kept silently apologizing and begging her not to hate me or be mad at me. Another part of me tried to remind myself that she would not do what I was remembering at the moment, that she was not the person in my memory, and that she was safe. The two inner voices warred to drown each other out.

None of it was voiced till after she stopped taking and I had continued to silently cry for several seconds. I think I actually interrupted her to try to explain what had been going on in my head… I found safe-enough words with which to speak about it; saying how frustrating it was when seemingly innocuous/nice (and common) responses to emotional upheaval and intense self-hatred were such instant triggers… I’m not sure if she was angry or sad that things like that had become so twisted in my head (not angry or sad at me, but for having gone through situations that caused the perversion of those basic concepts), but at one point I think I saw her hands move to cover her face…

We wrapped up that conversation and moved on to a plan for the weekend. I rated my intent to “harm myself” upon leaving. I said a low number, and she was incredulous (that sounds more distrustful that she actually was… more like pleasantly shocked?). I clarified that I wasn’t going to off myself after leaving. She clarified by asking if I’d self-harm. That number was higher. We talked about that a bit, then she again said we’d make a plan for the weekend. I was expecting to have to come up with the standard “what are you doing when you go home today? How about tonight? Tomorrow? Sunday?”. Instead, she asked me to hold on while she checked on her weekend plans… :gulp!: I panicked for a half-second and asked if she truly was just calling her husband (she’s never hospitalized me without talking to me about it, but others have). She showed me her phone dialing out to her hubby. I tried telling her I’d be fine over the weekend; that I didn’t want to interrupt her time with him. She promised she wouldn’t schedule anything if it interrupted their time together. She also said that she had promised to be there for me if I was having a rough time, and this was her way of being there this weekend… a few phone calls later, and we are going to meet again tomorrow either at her office or at her home office (tbd)… I’m still trying to be ok with wasting so much of her time, but she insists it’s not wasting it…

The ride home was “interesting”… I had trouble paying attention to the drive. There were points of the drive where I struggled with myself to keep the car at a safe speed and away from stationary structures. The whole time I worried that if I did crash, even accidentally, she’d think I had lied to her when I rated my safety. I try to be as honest as possible with her about things like that; it’s what built and keeps the trust. I’m more likely to say nothing at all rather than lie about that… I’ve remained silent in response to the safety question before, and we arranged for me to go inpatient like that in the past. I need the trust to be there. I get so low sometimes, I need us both to know that I’ll be honest about my safety even at the lowest times so I’m not again in a revolving hospitalization cycle…

:/

Sorry, that was probably tmi…

I think I need a nap now… catch you on the flip side.


Verge of tears (what’s with March?)

They’re right there. I can feel them threatening to erupt at any moment. But they never get past the gatekeepers of my eyes…

Talked way too much in group today. I took up too much time. They didn’t seem to outwardly mind though…and it helped the overwhelm a bit.

I wish I could cry; either salty or red, but something would be an improvement over all this stuffing… I’m so tired…

Is this a pattern? Do I always start a descent around February/March? When I was going to school, the breakdown started around this time of year. When I was down south, it was about this time of year that things would get really difficult… what’s the significance though? There are no anniversaries or major life events that I can point to. July is an easy one: K’s death, my first suicide attempt… even October/November is understandable with the start of the full holiday push. But March I don’t get. There’s nothing going on this month. Nothing happened in March. Why do I seem to struggle more during this month? I’ll have to bring it up to Dr C and ask if she has any theories.

In the mean time, gotta keep fighting through the days. Hope it doesn’t put too much strain on L & I (we’re both struggling in our own right, and it’s starting to show wear on the relationship. Nothing huge and life-changing, but enough to have us both testy and snippy with each other… resentments abound on both sides, though I’m not sure how fair either is).

I wish I could cut. Baring that, I wish I could cry. I’m so glad I have tomorrow off and to myself. Maybe I’ll be able to recharge a bit. I wasn’t feeling totally social today, but I went to my friend’s anyway hoping to just be able to sit and “be” outside of the apartment… she didn’t tell me she had company over though, so that failed… L and I are still touchy and talking it out over text (we seem to do better that way), but she’s also not feeling well. Took nyquil tonight and was out like a light before I got back…

I’m just so tired…


Journal page update

Worked on this page again today. Still trying to figure out what to do in the top left corner…

An artist friend suggested a nose, though at first I was thinking the lack of one is symbolic of how depression makes you feel like you can’t breathe. I dunno. It still needs something. The right side definitely needs work too, but that’s looking like a total overhaul. This side just needs *something*…

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I have to admit though, I worked my butt off on those stupid strings sewing her mouth shut. I must have redone them at least 5 times. They look a bit better in the photograph than in real life, but I’m still pretty proud of them. I had originally planned to glue actual thread on there, but wanted a more 3-d look to her lips, so I painted them in… I’m sure they look amature to more experienced artists, but they’re the best I’ve done so far. I’m happy with how they turned out.


More art

Worked on this page today. I’ve had the under layer done since September, but hadn’t figured out what else to do with her. She’s still a work in progress (didn’t mean to make the gold above her eye look like bangs), but she’s getting there… gonna get rid of the bangs and sew her mouth shut… not sure what else will happen, but that’s part of the plan.

Gelatos over gesso’d magazine page. Feather is gesso’d steps of origami paper.

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Feeling disposable

Feeling very disposable tonight. Not quite sure why. I have an idea, but… I don’t know.

Trying to hold the idea of being worthy of care, and that people actually do care about me in my head. It’s proving difficult. Part of that comes from shutting everyone out right now. It seems to be the only way I can function enough to keep moving forward. It’s the only thing that keeps me from dissolving into tears again.

I hate this time of year. I hate that I so easily fall back into despair. I hate that it is so much easier here, where all the reminders of the original events are in my face 24/7/365.

There’s so much swirling around in my head at the moment. I wish I knew how to sort it out. I might need to purposefully do some containment visualizations tonight. I’m grateful for TM’s suggestion of using the pensive. I don’t have to pay attention to where I put things, or try to stuff them in so they all fit. I can simply pull it all out and put it into the bowl. I know it will be held safely there. Everything can coalesce, but I will still be able to pick out what I need when I need it; easily and one at a time. I can put the whole mess in at once, and know I’ll still be able to find what I’m looking for when I’m looking for it. The house, family, the cats & dogs, friends, experiences (positive and negative alike)… it gets pulled into the pensive so that nothing falls over the rim. I will have the tools needed for pulling them out one by one when I want or need. It will happen safely and in a controlled manner…

Just have to make it through the next several weeks. Well, first I have to pull off the move, then I can worry about the rest of the month. At least I’ll be with L again. And the triggers won’t be in the walls and the trees… most days and nights, these walls scream with the past. The new walls may well scream for someone else, but I will not be able to hear them. Hoping for some internal peace after this relocation.


When the lights go down

Tears keep spilling from my eyes. I can’t seem to get them under control.

When the lights go down and there’s nothing left to be
When the lights go down and truth is all you see
When you feel that hole inside your soul
And wonder what you’re made of
Well we all find out
When the lights go down
-Faith Hill

Been struggling with the slowing of the day for the past several days. When it gets quiet, the emotions hit. I’m tired, but I can’t seem to sleep till way late (or is it early?). I have weird dreams. I get exhausted during the day because of the crappy sleep. None of it helps my emotional experiencing.

Way too many changes. Way too much for one day to reasonably hold…


don’t know how to allow myself to feel

I was talking to L today for our usual daily chat (coz what else are you going to do when you’ve been 1500 miles apart for the past year and some weeks?), and I managed to get out (without my voice catching, and without having to go silent) that I was trying to come to terms with having to find one of the cats a new home… The words came, then the emotion hit, and that was all I could say about it without tears welling up in my eyes… even just writing it here they are threatening to burst forth, but I’m frantically blinking them away.

We also mentioned that Monday will be my last session with TM. More tears sprung to my eyes, but behaved themselves…

I don’t know how to allow myself to feel this. It’s too heavy and too scary. I still can’t think of leaving mom here by herself without the tears escaping from the confines of my eyes… So I stop the thoughts or the conversations. I switch the topic quickly and efficiently. And I still don’t release any of it. It’s safer to feel bad about losing TM because the level of emotional investment in her is not as great as it is with everything and everyone else. I care about her, she’s safe, I will miss her a lot, but it’s nowhere near the level of overwhelming hurt that comes with everything else.

It all feels like K & T dying again. It’s that huge. It hurts that much (only maybe more, because it’s them being gone, and worry over mom and the dog and cats and house and future and everything…). The safety net that was supposed to always be there is again going away. I feel like that poor bee I tried to rescue from drowning in the ocean several weeks ago. It was so windy & choppy, every time I fished him out, the wind caught him and threw him back into the water. Eventually the waves carried him away and I am assuming he perished… I feel like that little bee after I had fished him out a second time, and before the wind whipped him away again. There’s a sense of relief in knowing I’m getting out of the waves, but I also know it’s pretty windy. I’m holding my breath for the last time I get knocked in and the waves finally take me away from all hope of getting out of the water. I’m afraid it’s going to happen like that. I’m afraid something will finally knock me so far that all the means of finding safety are too far to get to.

I don’t know how to be ok feeling this emotion. Maybe if I felt support around it; maybe if there was a cushion of safety in attempting to deal with the emotion, I might be ok trying it in bits… but there’s no cushion. I will have 2 weeks after my last session with TM to keep it together and keep moving. There won’t be that neutral party to bring me back to a level-head. So I have to maintain it for myself. The only way I know how to do it and still function is to stuff it all away.

So I stuff. I fight the tears and the sadness and the fear. I fight the panic… I’m not sure how well I will manage that on the last drive out of the driveway, but at least I won’t be the one behind the wheel.

This sucks.


pushing through

trying not to let my emotions get the best of me today and cause a total melt-down (though I do agree a release of emotion would be beneficial). I let myself tear up a bit earlier (thanks SG for the pep-talk/butt kicking!), but I have not let other things allow me to fall apart.

there are quite a few barriers to this move still, and trying to get them resolved serves to remind me how much I’ve screwed up in life… but I’m working on it. I kept making calls (after a brief pause to collect myself), and I didn’t let that voice that told me over and over again how hopeless and worthless I am win out.

sure, I want to head out to the store, buy a 12-pack of beer, some limes and coconut water, and drown myself in margaritas and beer, but… well, I don’t have the funds. so going to “drown” myself in my art shortly. plugging in my headset, cranking my ipod, and going to breathe through the rest of the day.


(not so) brief update

I met with TM today. I had dragged myself out to an art journal class last night, so I was feeling a bit better when I met with her. We processed Thursday’s session a bit, and came up with a relatively solid plan for an ending. We will have 2 more sessions. I was able to express how much I really need a proper goodbye, then we commiserated on our mutual dislike of endings. We both have homework for next session: to write about/express what this ending means to us… That will be hard. I started mine, but it will be a process over the next few days.

We also chatted a bit more on a professional level about the therapy process and what’s been helpful or not. I asked her if my gut feeling around the gravity of Thursday’s appointment was accurate. She clarified that, while safety concerns were on her mind, she wasn’t having the conversation with the intention of forcing any action. We then had a short conversation around the added trauma caused by involuntary commitment. I joked that it also makes for a mountain of paperwork. I’m glad we are on the same page on the subject. We spoke about trust briefly…

She gently called me out on something that drives me nuts when it happens to me, and I was doing it to her (though that was not my intention). She was expressing concern over something, and I simply said “no” and shook my head. While I meant it in the sense of “you shouldn’t be wasting energy on me like that, I don’t deserve/warrant it”, she took it as a denial of the validity of her expression. She looked at me and said something along the lines of: “I’m telling you how I’m feeling. You don’t get to invalidate that”… and how right she is. It drives me nuts when I hear one of my parents say “no, you don’t feel that way; you feel this way.” Who are they to know how I feel?! Maybe they would not feel the same, or they don’t want me to feel like that, but the reality is that I do. Same with TM today. While I didn’t want her to be concerned, she was. I didn’t have either the knowledge or the right to tell her otherwise… I’m really gonna miss her. :/

Overall, a good session today. I’m really sad there’s only 2 left. There is still so much I want to tackle, but there isn’t time. She did ask how I wanted to work on the ending, and I reminded her I sucked at them, and had no real concrete ideas on the spot. I told her there were a few things I wanted to wrap up, but I wasn’t sure we could finish it. I definitely want to cover that one bit of homework I had given her several weeks ago, but we didn’t really address. I also want to wrap up some of the other csa stuff I had started to talk about but again couldn’t finish… There won’t be enough time though. It sucks.

The anxiety about the building being so reminiscent of a locked unit is slowly going down. More and more decor is showing up, and it’s looking friendlier. The obnoxious buzzer is still startling though.

I really clicked with TM. Yeah, I tried hard not to let myself get too attached, but that failed. Now I find myself missing her before we are finished. I laughingly told her that I would appreciate her making this termination easier by becoming a bitch so I could hate her… It won’t happen.

UGH! I hate endings. You would think after 18+ therapists in as many years I would have this figured out, but it’s still all a learning process. All I know is that proper endings are really important. I might go cry over this again now ūüė¶


New art journal in progress (with periodic updates)

I don’t have a working title or anything, but this is layer one. Not quite sure how to proceed. There will be some level of cover up, but not sure what. There’s an idea I want to combine this with, but again, not sure how to execute it… the face was inspired by the journal pic I found online. Her’s is better I think. My pen face sketches and color need lots of work.

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2/1/15 – The next layer isn’t as bad as I had feared. It still needs more, but it’s coming along. It’s a combination of the above reference pic, another journal pic from online (which I can only find in the google search, it no longer seems to exist on deviantart.com), and the Sandman character from s1e3¬†from the series Sleepy Hollow.

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There’s still a lot fo work to do on it, but I am waiting for the image transfer to dry on the opposite page so I can start connecting the two halves of the image… I’m glad I was finally able to get past the initial block of staring at the blank page without knowing where to start. Sometimes a blank page is your best friend, other times your worst enemy.

 

 


Quotes

Scars remind us where we’ve been, they don’t have to dictate where we’re going. – David Rossi, Criminal Minds

“There is a sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness but of power. They are messengers of overwhelming grief and of unspeakable love.” – Washington Irving (Criminal Minds)


Art journal prompt: mess up a page when you like how it’s going

I was turned on to a set of journal prompts by the teacher of the workshops. I read through them (there are 10 in this set, only about 4 are actual prompts, the rest describe her process, so a good starting point for journal)…
Anyway, this particular prompt was to start a page, then when you were liking how it was going, mess it up. Paint over it, smear it, do something totally different than what you started liking… it didn’t mayer if you hated it or loved it in the end, but it’s supposed to get you in touch with the discomfort of changing something you are happy with.

I had kinda liked where the original page was going (distress stains and embossing), but I figured I’d take the risk and “mess it up”. I have to say I like the end result way better than the direction it started in. I’m finding as much as I like the concept of the the words in the pack I purchased, they just don’t have the words I’m really looking for. I guess that could go along with the “limit yourself” prompt from the set of 10 I mentioned, but… I’m finding I’m simply using them for implying words more than the actual ones on them. Anyway, I’m distracted.

It was a fun prompt. “The places you will go when the years start to flow”.
Guess I wish I could cry and get the release from the tears. Hoping the healing kicks in again whenever that happens…

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sales are my downfall…

So, my favorite art store is closing. I’m sad because they were my go-to for bargain supplies, but also for stuff I couldn’t find at Michael’s, A.C. Moore, or Jo-Anne’s. They catered to professional artists and art students… Anyway, they are having a huge liquidation sale, and I had to check it out. ¬†I picked up some stuff I had been needing/wanting, and I didn’t spend all that much (yay!). Well, with all these new supplies, I¬†had to play today. ¬†I snagged some water-soluble wax crayons, some black markers for my recent art journal obsession (at $0.10 each, buying a few that might get tossed soon was a must), and that wax medium that keeps my acrylic painted journal pages from sticking together… I got a bunch of other stuff also, but these are what I used today. The result was me coloring in eyes I had drawn the other day, and also doing the opposite painted page. ¬†I love song lyrics with meaning, so I decided to add some words from Taylor Swift’s Safe & Sound:

I remember tears streaming down your face/When I said, “I’ll never let you go”/When all those shadows almost killed your light/I remember you said, “Don’t leave me here alone”/…/Just close your eyes/The sun is going down/You’ll be alright/No one can hurt you now/Come morning light/You and I’ll be safe and sound…

I think it brought the two otherwise un-related pieces together (something that seems to be important in my art journaling… I really like 2-page spreads that make sense together. It’s just easier to express things that way). What do you think? Kinda work?


I can’t get out of my own way (again?!)

I didn’t sleep well last night. ¬†I am feeling very lost and needy today, but without energy to do anything about it. ¬†I want a magic pill or wand or spell or something to make this all better. ¬†I don’t know how to do anything about it. ¬†I had enough energy to get out of bed, dressed, take the dogs out, and feed them. Then back to bed. ¬†I know I have a huge list of coping skills De gave me again yesterday, but I can’t settle on any one to do. ¬†I pick up my art, and stare at the blank page. I want to go out to the beach, but I don’t have the parking money. ¬†I don’t want to watch tv or talk on the phone (my head hurts). ¬†I didn’t even make coffee this morning. ¬†I want someone or something to distract me, but I don’t have that at the moment. ¬†Tears keep falling from my eyes, but I don’t want them to. ¬†They are falling for all the wrong reasons. ¬†I wish I could just sleep. I wish my head would shut up, and I could move on from this… I hate everything right now, and I’m so incredibly tired.


it’s almost here

Today was my second to last appointment with De. ¬†I’m glad I wrote stuff for her to read before, because I couldn’t figure out how to say what I needed to while I was there. ¬†She walked me through some ideas on how to deal with the down time (though it wasn’t quite what I had hoped. I had wanted to make up a schedule and things that I am expected to do, but she just left it at a coping skills list and I wasn’t able to say that I had hoped for more). ¬†Then she indulged me by showing me my chart. ¬†I pretty much knew what would be in there, but I needed to hear it from her. ¬†My head sometimes comes up with things even though I know that it would be unlikely. ¬†She showed me the intake, copies of the handouts she had given to me, the checklists she had to complete, the assessments we had done, and she read some examples of the notes she had written. ¬†She asked if it was what I had expected. I told her I figured it was that kind of stuff, and that the notes would be as vague as they were because it’s pretty much standard across agencies for confidentiality reasons. ¬†It gave enough info to convey what we had done, but not enough to give away too much information should any records be summoned to court (they are the county sexual assault services center as well as a child protective services branch, so records often go to court, lawyers, police, etc). ¬†They are also audited by the national accreditation agency, and supervisors see the files. ¬†I knew there would be no judgement either way, just objective statements, but I needed to hear that. ¬†My head had been getting too loud with the negative judgements I have towards myself. ¬†It was getting mixed up with what I knew she would be writing…

She also told me that she had spoken with the clinical director at the new agency. She was able to give a better picture than just the intake would, and she said she advocated for me getting someone who “is not scared of self-harm” and someone who would not switch over again before I moved. ¬†From what she told me, she gave a pretty accurate picture of what we had done, what has been helpful, and what some of my obstacles are. ¬†Because I have been so caught up on “I should know better” lately, she made it a point to convey that, while I have a background in all this and I can be pretty insightful, it does not mean I necessarily know how to apply it to myself. ¬†I’m really appreciative of that, because it’s so hard to explain to a clinician that yes, I can spout all this theory, insight, and planning, but I can’t always implement it… and it makes me feel like crap. If I’m so good at this with others, why the heck can’t I figure shit out for myself?! ¬†De was gentle in reminding me all clinicians are actually human also. We have our struggles and weaknesses. ¬†We have our bad days (or in my case, bad decades). And we all reach out for help at some point either because we are stumped about a client or about our own lives. ¬†I guess it’s along the same lines of MD’s sometimes needing to seek out medical attention from someone else. :sigh: If I could figure out/remember how to fix myself in the moment, I certainly would…

Anyway, she asked if there was anything else I wanted to cover. ¬†I told her I had “wanted to show her some more art, but…” She offered to go the full hour, and I was able to say that I didn’t necessarily want to talk about any or all of it. ¬†She still expressed interest, so I handed her the newer art journal. ¬†It wasn’t as full as the WTJ, but still had stuff I wanted her to see. ¬†I wished we had time to talk about it because some of it came up after a difficult session last week. ¬†I guess that will have to wait to be talked about with someone down the line, I’m just not sure who and when because it’s still very raw and vulnerable and very much wrapped up in the past. ¬†I’m not sure I can go into some of that stuff with someone else anytime soon (though it is something that is with me daily). ¬†I just don’t know if I want to take that risk again knowing that whomever I end up seeing at this agency will definitely be time-limited to only a few months. ¬†It’s too raw to be able to trust enough to go into in such a short time-frame…

We wrapped up… she reminded me Tuesday will be our last session… I know. ¬†trust me, I know. ¬†Part of me wishes she had asked why my answer was what it was when she asked how I felt about the upcoming break in services. Part of me is happy I didn’t have to go there with her… I really need to be able to figure out how to say goodbye by Tuesday. ¬†I had written something out, but I don’t think it says what I want it to. I at least have the weekend to mull it over and try to come up with something better. ¬†I did write to her asking to not let me leave on Tuesday without being able to say goodbye though…


can’t get out of my own way today…

I don’t know how to do it. ¬†I can’t pull myself away from continually tripping on my own emotional mess. ¬†I can’t decide if I want to talk to anyone about it, or just ignore the world and stay in bed. ¬†I think ignoring the world would be best at this point…


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.


identity crisis

It’s come back to me again recently that I have lost my identity with this disability determination. ¬†I used to be a youth worker, a domestic violence counselor, a substance abuse counselor, an educator… now I’m just… nothing. ¬†I know De and L and J would all argue against that, but much like L struggled with work being a huge part of her identity last year, I’m struggling with it now. ¬†I’m not even a good mom to my “kids”, I fail them regularly. It’s underscored with this impending move and all it means. ¬†I have to try to hold a job again when I move back up north. ¬†I have to be productive and live up to all those expectations, but I also have to do it within the bounds of disability. ¬†I can’t afford to screw up. ¬†I can’t afford to lose this determination and then screw up life again. ¬†Finances scare the crap out of me. ¬†Screwing up scares the crap out of me. ¬†I know I have a lot to prove during this time that L and I are apart. ¬†She has her fears about the pressures, and I have mine. ¬†I know I have been doing really well (comparatively) these last few months, but that nagging fear of screwing up is always in the back of my mind (and L’s, and everyone’s…). ¬†When you lose trust from those closest to you, it’s very difficult to build it back. ¬†When you lose trust in yourself, it’s just as hard. ¬†I know I tell L that everything will be fine (and for the most part I believe it), but there’s that little voice in my head that says I will never be a real human being. ¬†I will never get through struggles in life without major meltdowns. I will never be “safe” from myself… I know these are only doubts, but I need to give voice to them. ¬†I can’t carry them all alone right now. ¬†I saw De today, but I was too busy trying to avoid tears and fear to acknowledge any of this. ¬†Now that things have slowed (I’m just sitting watching TV with L), my head is filling with all the things I’ve been frantically pushing away (and then some).

I don’t know who I am anymore. I don’t know what I’m good at. ¬†I have no way to make money or to help alleviate the pressure on L. ¬†I have no useful skills. ¬†De was trying to get me to come up with some way to structure my days, but even that instills trepidation. ¬†I don’t want to commit to volunteering because I don’t think I can keep up with the gas commitment even if I can manage to keep my emotions in check to allow me to go in every day. ¬†Everything is far here, everything requires driving, which requires money, which I don’t have. ¬†Hobbies require money. Hanging with friends requires money (and friends)… ¬†All of this I don’t have. ¬†So whatever. ¬†I have to suck it up and just deal with crap. ¬†I have to ignore it, or breathe through it, or something. ¬†Back to running through the fog trying to avoid all the road blocks.

 


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.


Updated “no words” and adding #53 Turmoil

I worked some more on the painting.  I think this is a bit closer to what I want the feel of the painting to be:

image

And then I did this several days ago. It’s also a work in progress, but I have not figured out what else I want to do with it. It started as just an eye doodle, and grew from there… (2014 100 Theme Challenge #53: Turmoil).

image


Sadness

So, De was right. There’s a ton of grief over this whole thing. After the tag sale today (and my short nap following it) I woke up feeling lost. I had spent the last 3 days frantically occupying myself with the logistics of the garage sale. I woke from my nap without purpose or distraction. There was an overwhelming urge to cry uncontrollably, hysterically, and wholeheartedly. I didn’t let myself though. The last time I felt this urgent a need to cry, I was hysterical for over eight hours. I ended up calling a crisis line then being involuntarily committed to a psych unit. I’m in no mood to go through that again, especially in this state with such poor mental health care.
We tried to find someone to go out with as a distraction (L is the only person I consider safe enough to cry in front of, so I would end up crying wherever we went out). None of our friends were available today (or this weekend)… we ended up just going to buy food and drink. Eventually, the hunt for my preferred beverage managed to distract me from the pending tears.¬† They didn’t come today, but I’m sure they will soon enough… I hate crying. I hate that tears this loaded don’t seem to end. It doesn’t help that I have my monthly mood swing.


Grief

No bombs were dropped by De in session today, though I did have a few panicked seconds when she started out a sentence with “my supervisor is all over me about…” (heart stalled and breath caught mid-exhale) “…asking you if we can keep your piece for further use” (resume breathing and pumping blood). I didn’t know what to say. I guess they really liked it. I asked if I could get back to her about it. De said that it will be displayed for the month of April, but that they would like to keep it to put up in the building. I’m not opposed to that, but I’m also really attached to the piece. I think if I leave it there, I will ask that my real name be used. Might as well get credit for it.¬† I also told De that I had been toying with asking for it back so I could tweak it because I had a million other ideas since I handed it in. She laughed and reminded me that was why I had given it to her when I did, so I wouldn’t mess with it and end up getting frustrated when it didn’t turn out how I pictured. She’s right, because I would over-work it and feel that I need to start all over again.¬† I don’t think I would have a fourth rendition in me before the beginning of April. It’s good I don’t have my hands on it anymore.
We spent the rest of the session talking about the pending move and how I will need to grieve the loss of the house and such, but that the overall result will be positive (the house does hold many negatives, as does this state. But it also was a “home base” for so long, a safety net if I need it. Hope I can get some sort of other safety net from it. I’m not going to hold my breath for that though).
I’m still adamant about not crying in front of others. She was trying to convince me that it would be ok, but all the judgements and fears around crying screamed in my head. I did tear up a few times with her today but refused to cry. I really don’t think I would have been able to stop if I had actually started. So I moved the conversation along (much like I keep my head moving all day and night so I don’t crack with tears). I had wanted to ask her to focus our work on the assaults and history with DuckBoy. I just didn’t find an appropriate way to slip it in to the flow. I needed more time to explain the rest of the week. I don’t think I expressed my distaste for loss in any meaningful way. I don’t think she gets how hard that is for me. I tend to stuff it all down, so it’s easy for people to miss the little hints. I just don’t do well with loss. A whole lot of loss is coming up real soon. It’s panicking me a bit, but I’m sure it will all be ok in the end (isn’t it always?). There’s always loss. There’s always change. Just gotta learn to go with it… don’t open your heart too much to prevent excessive pain with the withdrawal of whatever it was that you let worm its way inside.
The session flew by before I knew it. On the way out I asked if they had a shredder so I could get rid of the last pictures I found of DuckBoy yesterday. She suggested “making a moment of it” and that we could do it next week. I gave her the pictures to hold on to till then (I certainly don’t want them)…
(Strangely appropriate song just came on my playlist: Goodbye My Lover by James Blunt… covers the feel of all this. ¬†It works for the house, the history, and everything else).
Is it weird that I miss my best friend from high school so much lately? I found some pics of her and of us the same time I found the DuckBoy pictures… one relationship I’d rather forget, and one I wish was still going. But I guess loss and grief are the themes of the moment (sadly there’s only the loss of DuckBoy for which I’m relieved, the other losses just hurt). I wish I had the gumption to track her down and show up at her door. I wish I had been a better friend. I wish I had fought harder when she ran away. But what do you do when a friend ceases wanting to be your friend? …I still have the mug she gave me for Christmas one year. It’s my favorite one. I really miss her.
The loss of this house means the loss of that last connection to a bunch of positive stuff. There will no longer be a safety net here… it sucks…


The appropriateness of tears

I was journaling to De, and the topic of crying snuck its way in. ¬†I don’t remember if I have talked about it here yet. ¬†It’s not an easy thing for me (crying). ¬†There has to be a really damn good reason to cry “legit” tears (not the ones that seem to spill uncontrollably from my eyes at random commercials or sappy stories, but tears that are backed by deeper emotion, tears that actually mean something or are connected to something). ¬†It’s never appropriate in front of another human being.

Crying was not accepted growing up. ¬†It was never soothed, only discouraged (and in some cases punished). ¬†The only exception to this was when K died; then it was ok to legitimately cry (though only up until the funeral and burial in my recollection). ¬†It wasn’t ok to cry for T though, “because he wasn’t real family” (G hated T and refused to consider him a relative because he “wasn’t blood”… I think love makes a family, not genetic material. ¬†I will never consider Bitch family though she is my father’s biological sister). ¬†T married K. ¬†He was kind to her (mostly), and to us. ¬†He will always be family to me and I have a right to cry when I miss him… But I digress. G never allowed crying. ¬†Mom looks down on it also, though she was more consoling about it than G ever was. ¬†Regardless, crying was like a sick day: hell froze over before it was allowed (or the school kicked us out because we were contagious).

Despite new learning and a cognitive understanding of the benefits of crying, I still have a lot of trouble allowing myself to cry in front of anyone else. That rarely happens. ¬†It has taken me over a decade to learn to talk myself into crying when I need it, not just when it falls under the “ok” column set by my early experiences. ¬†I have to have a drawn-out conversation with myself to convince that gate-keeper to let the tears fall. ¬†Sometimes I can’t convince her to let go, but a few times every few years, I can actually manage to cry as an emotional release. ¬†Most of the time, blood had taken the place of tears… I haven’t cut in months, but I haven’t cried either (except maybe twice in the ER or the hospital). ¬†Tears tumble forth at stupid sappy stories, or emotional moments in movies, but there’s nothing really behind them. ¬†It’s not a full-fledged cry, but just leaking eyes. ¬†I wish I could bring myself to release through crying more often. ¬†I think it might do me some good, but the keys needed to open that gate are stashed away somewhere “safe” from my prying.

One of the few things I remember from my childhood is a recurring nightmare. ¬†I would be crying, and Skeletor would yell at me to stop. ¬†He would tell me that if I didn’t stop right then, he would kill me. ¬†He would grab me and physically threaten until the dream me stopped crying… I think the dream me, conditioned by Skeletor, is the gate-keeper to allowing the adult me to cry. ¬†She’s terrified though, and repeats Skeletor’s words over and over again even when I try to tell her it’s ok to cry.

The other fear of crying comes from the fear of being overwhelmed by it. ¬†If I start to cry, will I ever be able to stop? ¬†I’m reminded of one day in 2007 when I cried hysterically for about 8 hours straight. ¬†I would stop only long enough to catch my breath for a few seconds, then the choking sobs would start again. ¬†I remember calling 211 because I hoped talking to someone would help me stop. ¬†They sent out an ambulance without telling me and I was hospitalized (I cried hysterically the whole time until they drugged me up enough to put me to sleep for a few hours before they admitted me upstairs)… Kinda shitty experience. ¬†Similar in “turn-off” factor as the Skeletor dream.

Anyway, I’m not really sure what the purpose of this post is… We all learn different things growing up (many of us learn really warped stuff), and it tends to affect us into adulthood even when we try our best to shake the lessons. ¬†I look forward to the day that I can cry “as needed” without having to go through a 30 minute back-and-forth with the old tapes.


Friday Night on Repeat

I was organizing our art stuff and started playing the music on my phone in shuffle. ¬†I hit Miranda Lambert’s “Over You” and it has gotten stuck on infinite repeat. ¬†There are just some songs that are worth the incessant playing. ¬†I’m not 100% sure what I like about it. ¬†I think it’s a combination of the lyrics and the way she sings parts of it. There’s a desperation and… “something” in her voice at times that just triggers something in my brain. ¬†It latches on and holds it.

The last few days have been ok. ¬†I don’t think I wrote much recently, but that may be because a lot of effort is being exerted on visual expression. ¬†I wish I was better at it, but I need to practice again to get back to my drawing level from several years ago. ¬†It’s definitely something you lose if you don’t use… I’m also playing a lot with mediums I’ve never worked with (or did so only a very few times). ¬†I really want to work more with water colors. ¬†They have a feel to them that other paints can’t quite achieve. ¬†I just seriously need more practice. ¬†I would like to take a class, but we don’t really have the extra cash. ¬†I could try learning on my own through videos, but there’s something about being able to ask questions that makes it work better for me. One day…

In the mean time, I will be fooling around with other random stuff. ¬†There’s a lot I want to be able to put on paper, but I’m not quite sure how. ¬†I guess it will take a lot of trial and error.

Random “weird” thought of the moment: I was getting gas and checking a stack of lottery tickets from the last few weeks. ¬†The guy asked if I had felt lucky. ¬†I responded with “No, life hates me…” ¬†The woman at the next register said that I was still alive and breathing, so life must not hate me that much. ¬†My automatic response was “Exactly! Life hates me.” ¬†I didn’t realize what I had said until I saw the look on his face (combination of pity and disgust I think). ¬†It wasn’t even like I have been depressed all that much lately. ¬†I think all those years of living in the dark makes dark things a habit. ¬†I’m not suicidal right now. ¬†I have no desire to die right now. ¬†I might even go so far as to say I have been “happy” lately (ok, maybe that’s more of just “disconnected and slightly hypo-manic” but since I don’t really have bipolar, I will just call it happy and disconnected). ¬†The words just tumbled out of my mouth without me realizing. ¬†I said them laughingly and with a smile on my face that had been there when I walked into the store… It’s weird how “habits” can carry through even the good times.


The Hunger Games trilogy is great, albeit a bit triggering…

L and I went to the movies today. ¬†It ended up being a bit of a bumble. ¬†First, we went to the wrong theater, then got to the right one too late – our original movie was sold out. ¬†We also wanted to see the Hunger Games sequel, Catching Fire, so she got tickets for that. ¬†It started an hour later, and lasted an hour longer, but it was REALLY good! ¬†I was a bit on edge most of the movie, but it was an “ok” on-edge feeling. ¬†The first several scenes involve her going through various PTSD symptoms, and I picked up on the others throughout the movie too. ¬†Either this movie did better presenting the symptoms, or I read a whole bunch more into it than I did the first one. ¬†I could feel her fear, anger, hyper-vigilance… I know it all too well. ¬†But anyway, it was good. ¬†And it leaves you hanging. ¬†Fuckers.

Most of the way through the movie, I remembered that mom had expected us home around 4pm… oops! ¬†It was now 5:30 and the movie still had 30 minutes. ¬†I knew she wouldn’t check her texts, but I shot her one anyway. ¬†I called her as soon as we got outside, and apologized for not showing on time. ¬†Normally, this isn’t a big deal, but being Christmas and all, she was a bit miffed. ¬†We got home in time to watch her down more wine and finish the last bites of her chicken. ¬†We will have to atone for this with a gift of more alcohol sometime in the near future. ¬†We really didn’t mean to get to off-track, but we rarely do. ¬†After apologizing and chatting for a while, the tension eased and we enjoyed our dinner. ¬†L even tried to translate some words into Hungarian through the internet, and we found the weirdest translation for cheesecake yet: “pictures of naked women’s legs to look at”… we laughed at that for a good 20 minutes. ¬†I think either slang has gotten really wacky, or someone is trying to screw up poor, unsuspecting English speakers when they try to translate stuff to a language they don’t know…

Anyway, I’m again renewed in my desire to read The Hunger Games books, but I have to find them in hard-copy ( there’s just something “not right” about reading books on a tablet… I guess I’m old-fashioned that way. ¬†I really like the feel and smell of a book, and they never run out of charge just as you get to the good part). ¬†I wish we had paid better attention to the books my landlord had ¬†left us before we donated them. ¬†I know we had the whole trilogy, but I managed to keep only the second book… then that was donated when we moved out of the place. ¬†oops! I should have known better, I liked most of the books C had left behind…


mostly-finished Inside-out Box & WIP painting that I have also given up on for the time being

ok, so I lied about updating that post… It’s been about 3 weeks since I declared it finished and showed it to De. ¬†Sitting there looking at it in session, I realized how much I hated the ribbon around the outside lid and ripped it off as I walked back out of the building. ¬†I felt much better. ¬†i replaced the ribbon with black sand, but i still want to make a wall of small river stones or gravel along the curtain-line. To do that, i will have to buy some stones though.

Sometimes I get frustrated with my lack of supplies, or expertise in technique, or ideas, and just let the project rest indefinitely until I either get what I need, inspiration strikes, or I scrap it and change it all together. ¬†This box has been sitting “mostly finished” since the beginning of the month. ¬†It will likely stay like that for another several weeks as I have mentally moved on from it.

So, to keep from leaving too much suspense over the mostly-finished product, here are some pics. ¬†I don’t know where the pics of the outside of the box went, apologies.

And here’s the WIP painting I mentioned. ¬†It was born of an in-session assignment. ¬†I got frustrated with the way I was painting the chair as well as my lack of definition/direction with the person in the chair, so I moved on to other things (specifically, a shadow-puppet piece based off the same image – also stalled due to my lack of knowledge about where to take the performance of it, and technical know-how to accomplish what I am picturing in my head). ¬†I will finish this painting some day, but I doubt it will be any time soon. ¬†All my current energy is focused on making that shadow-puppet piece work out. ¬†I really miss puppetry. ¬†I’m having a blast trying to figure stuff out for it, and it’s getting me in contact with puppet-arts people to help get things correct. ¬†It has also renewed my interest in puppetry in general.

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and it’s back

well, that was short-lived.  more alcohol needed I guess.

I don’t know. ¬†This drama is too much. ¬†I want it all done. ¬†The depression needs to go.

We have plans with a friend tomorrow. ¬†I’m not sure I want to go, but I know I should. ¬†I need to keep up appearances and keep faking it… Hopefully they will approve my insurance application this time around. ¬†I think I’m back to needing something more intensive, but at the same time, I am toying with the idea of dropping out of therapy. ¬†I don;t want to keep subjecting others to my drama and moods. ¬†I am tired of myself; ¬†I can only imagine what others feel about me (I’m continually surprised my wife had not turned-tail and run yet… I don;t want to be with me but I’m stuck. ¬†I have no idea why she chooses to stay).


overwhelmed

sold a group of my reptiles off today. ¬†hope they do ok. ¬†at least the store has more national (and international) reach to sell them. ¬†hope it wasn’t a mistake. ¬†still have 10 snakes and almost 20 lizards… need to keep moving the lizards. ¬†they are more labor-intensive than the snakes. ¬†it’s just all too much…¬†

saw De today. ¬†not sure what I was looking for, but I guess it was helpful. ¬†came up with ideas of what to do this weekend to keep safe and ahead of that black fog (or at least to the edge of it). ¬†re-homing some of the herps was part of the plan. ¬†i feel like I failed them though (especially the boa)… i hate myself for failing. ¬†i hate myself for bringing the puppy home. ¬†i hate myself for so many reasons. ¬†i just want to stay in bed. ¬†we are supposed to hang out with a friend tomorrow, and it’s really the last think I want to do. ¬†bed would be nicer. ¬†i just want to sleep right now. ¬†i almost cried on the way out of the store. ¬†ūüė¶ ¬†

so tired of all this. ¬†wanting to find a blade really badly right now. ¬†the self-injury would be comforting… f*** the fact that I will be getting a massage later this coming week or next… it doesn’t really matter, I can just bandage it and tell her not to do that leg… what difference does it make anyway. ¬†who the f*** cares what some stranger thinks. ¬†I doubt I’d ever see her again anyway, I can’t afford massages without buying them from living social, and that always means new customers only for stuff like that.

L is struggling also, and I wish I could be more supportive. ¬†but I’m just lost in myself. ¬†f*** the world. ¬†not in a good space today (this week)… none of it matters. ¬†nothing matters. ¬†it’s all just pointless anyway. ¬†


clueless

and confused/conflicted. I suddenly feel ok to try to work. I think I can do this without falling apart. I seem to be able to reign in my depression with more ease… The walls come quicker and higher these days. I don’t want to be useless and jobless. Though I know I struggle with going volunteering even twice a week, maybe if I had the benefit of a paycheck, I could pull it together more often.

On Friday I had told De about feeling useless on disability. It still feels like a death sentence. I know my energy comes in spurts, but maybe if I HAD to function for a job, I would just force myself into it. I have always been taught that you have to keep plugging on. There’s no sick days unless you are on your death bed. Lately, all I have are “sick days”. I want to be productive and useful and have a purpose… I want to have something to say when people ask me what I do. De said I might need to grieve that productive life. It was on the way out, and I didn’t really get what she meant. The more I think of it though, the more I think I disagree on that point. If I grieve being productive and the life I had before, it feels too much like I’m giving up and will never get out of this space. I just need to keep looking at it like a stepping stone. (It’s funny that I say this all the while the little voice in my head is telling me not to worry because life won’t be that long anyway… I think only people who have battled depression and suicidal thinking can truly understand that little voice – even when things are going well, that nagging thought plays on repeat in the background. I used to think of it as an escape plan in case things got/stayed really bad. These days, it’s at once something I laugh at and something I desire with every fiber of my being. Once the little voice gets louder, it’s difficult to drown it out. Then I just have to wait it out, it has to sleep sometime).

I see De again tomorrow. I think on top of everything else I want to address (asking more about the art therapy possibilities, talking about the disability stuff, touching on my fears about the past coming to life again with this relationship, feeling overwhelmed by a lot of stuff…), I need to address the crazy mood changes and the background suicidal thinking. I can coast along just fine when distracted, but the minute the distractions stop, everything comes crashing back.

I don’t know what exactly to say. My head is all over the place even now, and I can’t hold a train of thought. I still can’t see a definite future for myself. There are things I want to accomplish, but when asked where I see myself in 5 years, the tears are triggered and my head answers: dead. The cycles are maddening. If my head will still be battling all this in 5 years, I sure-as-hell don’t want to be around for it… I love my life, but not my head. Does that make sense?