Tag Archives: life

Holding Back

If I could have the conversation I want to have…

Before I begin, you know the gory details of what I have been through in my life and, while I know that you cannot REALLY relate (and I am glad for that), I wish you would try.  Please try to understand that when I say my heart breaks, I mean that it crumbles and bleeds and falls to the floor in agony; after all, it is pieced together with tape and Elmer’s glue as it is.  Please try to understand that when I say that I have fear, it registers in my brain and my body in just the same way as the gut wrenching fear registered when my mother snapped her gun belt before a beating; sharp and quick.  Please try to understand that when I say I love, I love selectively and deeply, into the marrow of my bones.

I have not meant to withhold my feelings and I am sorry that everything came out in a messy texted torrent yesterday, but I have been anguishing over our friendship for months.  Your news uncorked a shaken bottle of champagne.

I have seen a pattern in the way that you have been treating people, the very important and permanent people, in your life lately and it has made me examine my own role there too.  In the last year, and over the past few months especially, whenever one of them doesn’t serve some need within you, disagrees with you or your life choices, or has a difficult time coping with their lives and inarticulately comes to you needing support, you you spout about the incredible difficulties of your own life and the zero fucks you give and you turn them away.  It has seemed so easy for you to let them, to let your love for them, go.  Where do I, a mere friend, a temporary fixture of life, fit into that?  I haven’t been sure.

My heart has been breaking for you over your recent choices.  My heart has been breaking because you are knowingly setting yourself up for future heartbreak.  My heart has been breaking because your children will suffer their own heartbreak when you do.  My heart is breaking because they will take on your burdens and they will carry them for life, because that is what children do.  My heart has been breaking because my heart (and so many others) will break right along with yours when this house of cards crumbles around you.

I have feared that by expressing my concerns, you would reject me as you did them (and I was kinda right).  I have feared that our friendship is as disposable as those relationships appear to be to you.  I have these fears because of my own past, because of our past, and because you and your friendship mean so much to me.

I have felt a real void where the much needed presence of your friendship used to be.  I have needed you for some real nitty, gritty and unpretty lately, but you been aware of little but yourself.  I have needed your help surviving the surge in emotion, flashbacks, and hormones since surgery.  I have needed you when I regretted the decision.  I have needed you in my walk through the hurt of ending my relationship with my mother.  I have needed you, and you are a cheerleader when things are going well, but our textversations all seem to end when the topic turns toward anything of remotely difficult substance about me.  I have felt increasingly rejected and ignored by it, but I have presumed that it was only because you, too, were going through your own heartbreak and could not bear mine as well.

I have struggled with all of these feelings, but I was confident that they would pass as your fog lifted and you got back to your happy.

Then you tell me that you have been happy.  So, while I could understand and process your absence from my life because you are hurting, I could not (and cannot) fathom your absence because you are happy.  Is this our friendship?  Is this what it means to be your “best friend” now that you give zero fucks?  To be there to support you through your darkness, but only have you around when my life is comfortable for you?  Is my ability to be involved in your life contingent on my faking a smile?

I am happy that you feel happy, but I fear that it is a right now kind of happy.  I fear that you have been overtaken by the intensity and intoxication that right now happiness is made up of.  Right now happiness will deceive you (please don’t forget how it blinded you to a narcissistic monster just a year ago).  You let people in so freely and, while I admire that so much about you, I am afraid for the way that you appear to be chasing that right now happiness like a drug.  I fear it because an addiction to that right now happiness will destroy you like any other, my friend.  Like any drug, right now happiness can only fill the holes in your heart for so long before it leaves a wake of devastation in your life.

Don’t be mistaken, that right now happy can last for years.  You, however, deserve forever happiness.  My fear is that you are risking your forever happiness for temporary glee; and it breaks my heart.

2016 Begins With a Bang

2015’s ridiculousness spilled right over into 2016, unfortunately.  It’s been a crazy few weeks, but the worst seems to be over…for now.  Of course, life happens in threes.

I was avoiding therapy at the end of last year because I didn’t know what I wanted to do with my relationship with my mother.  Should I bring her in to therapy, be vulnerable in a big way, and try yet again?  Turns out, the answer is no.  I can’t do it.  I’m not ready and I may never be.  I’m back at a point where I have given up on my relationship with my mom.  I mean, we still speak occasionally.  I can still be around her.  So, I suppose a more accurate statement is that I have made the decision to give up on the idealized version of the relationship I have been hoping I might have with my mother someday.  I have to let go of it, once and for all.  We will never have a normal relationship and clinging to the (very false) notion that we might is only hurting me.

Letting go meant sending her an email telling her why and what it meant for us in the future.  It was really hard for a few days; it still is.  But I’m beginning to feel a sense of relief about the decision.  Letting go is freeing up my heart and mind for other things.  I have amazing people in my life that I CAN and DO have normal relationships with that are indescribably wonderful.  I have a business that is slowly building up steam.  I am on a long-haul journey of physical and mental health.  It’s nice to have the ability to turn my energy toward the people and things that actually matter in my corner of the universe, including myself.

Well, as I’m still somewhat reeling from the finality of sending my mom the email I did, my troubled nephew’s problems showed up on my front porch.  Whatever happened, or didn’t, the wrong person got very angry with him.  Thankfully my brother handled it, but scary people now know where my family lives and, if my nephew makes a dumb mistake again, who knows what could happen to any of us.  Hello, anxiety for days.  It really makes me sad too, because I wish there were something more we could do for him.  Unfortunately, though, addiction is a cycle only he can break.

Then, just as we’re getting our feet under us financially, my sister in law loses her job this last week.  Woosah.  Goosfraba.  There really are those days that I’m not sure how much more I can take.  There are days I can not get out of bed because it’s too difficult to deal with everything that happens.

Then I write.  I started walking more often (it’s kinda shameful how far I can’t go, but I gotta start somewhere).  I went back to therapy.  I keep working.  I move what I need to move around.  I’m honest with people that I “don’t feel well.”  I beat myself up in my head (man I am m a super bitch).  I cry.  I laugh.  I’m sad.  I’m scared.  I freak out.  I try to remember the good things.  I reach out.  I isolate.  I just keep living life.  Somehow, I keep living life.  Thank God.

Keep living life, friends.  It keeps going, so we might as well enjoy the ride.  Or at least try to.  Something like that.  :)

 

Impossible Choices

Two posts in one day, what? lol  This is what happens when I sit down at a computer and need a break, I guess.  Okay, so I think the real reason I haven’t wanted to go to therapy lately is because my therapist gave me what feels like two impossible choices recently.

Like I said earlier, I am beating the proverbial dead horse in therapy these days about my mother and my past.  I’ve talked about everything, over analyzed it all. Life has given me enough perspective that I’m back to the point that I was before I had my breakdown: acceptance.  I was abused as a child and it’s okay.  I’m not ashamed of it and have no qualms telling other people if it’s appropriate in a given situation.  While what I’ve been through will always be a large part of my rhetoric as I learn more in recovery, it is not everything and doesn’t need to be.

One of the things I’m stuck on is my ongoing relationship with my mom.  It’s not a good one; and it won’t be until we either work on it together or I give up on it.  So, I have to make the decision whether to actually invite her into therapy to really work on our relationship or finally make the decision not to pursue it anymore.  Not an easy choice.

I love my mother; I always will.  But… Is it wise of me to continue to pour effort and energy into a relationship that I’m not sure is even remotely salvageable? Is it wise of me to open up my heart in a very vulnerable way to someone who has done nothing but let me down again and again and again?  If therapy with my mother were actually successful and positive, I can’t even begin to explain how rewarding that would be.  But….  am I willing to take the risk that it will be equally devastating if therapy with her were a complete bust? I’m not ready to make that decision, so I’m letting it be for now.  Giving it a rest and just accepting that it will be annoying until I make a decision one way or the other.

Of course, there is also the need for me to work on myself more.  Because I’ve kind of hit this therapeutic plateau (at least that’s kind of what it feels like), my therapist suggested that I try group therapy, because I would probably get a lot from it.  That’s probably true, but the thought of it gives me anxiety.  I’m not ready to try something like that yet, no matter how helpful it might be in the long run.  And, realistically, I may not be ready until after I feel normal and figure out how I feel about life after weight loss surgery, if ever I suppose.

These feel like big life decisions that I want nothing to do with. lol

For now,  because I don’t know what else to do and I’m not ready to move forward with myself or my mother, I’m just going to keep figuring out this post-op life, and keep working on balancing business and life.  I’m also going to focus on enjoying the time I have with my brother and his family.  We laugh and talk and argue and he’s supportive of me and my business.  I try to be as supportive of him as I can be.  It’s nice.  It’s therapeutic in it’s own way.

Anyway, I should get back to working.  It feels nice to write again. Have a great rest of your week.  Thanks for stopping by :)

Knock Knock (Trigger Warning)

Suicide is coming too close lately. I hear it’s death rattle knocking at my door.  No, I’m not suicidal; but it wasn’t that long ago that I was.  So when the news of suicide comes into the little bubble I occupy in our vast universe, it has an effect on me like never before.

A couple of months ago, a person sadly took their life by jumping into morning traffic from one of the higher freeway overpasses in town. That overpass is such a familiar part of home and it instantaneously became the site of an incredibly tragic moment. I pass by that overpass on my daily commute. I have passed by that same overpass so many times in my 32 years of life, that I can’t even count them for you. I was a barely permitted teen that white knuckled through rush hour traffic in that portion of the freeway, terrified of the towering levels of vehicle filled concrete and the median whizzing by immediately to my left, with my dad sitting to my right (probably even more scared). It happened so close to home.

I learned about the suicude before it hit the news because one of my best friend’s husband’s watched it happen on his way to work.  Of course, it wasn’t long before reports spread like wildfire.  The comments on social media varied wildly between understanding and compassion, insensitivity, and obnoxiously offensive and callous (from good riddance, to attention grabber, to should have thrown themselves off the Dam, with a side of eff you for ruining my commute folks – yeah).  The suicide was shocking enough, but the responses from people in my home town were worse (way to further stigmatize mental illness, Vegas). While I was shocked and saddened by it all, the day moved forward. 

The next morning, shock turned visceral and physical as I made my way to the office.  I took the same route as always, on auto pilot as I mentally prepared for the day.  I was not prepared for the way that my breath caught in my throat as I rounded that short stretch of road and imagined a body falling from the sky.  I was not prepared for the overwhelming anger as the vilest of the vile comments came flooding back to my mind. I was not prepared for the incredible anxiety and sadness that I felt being so close to where that poor soul left this Earth. I couldn’t help but weep for them, their family, and myself.

More recently, a very dear friend of mine reached out to me as she dealt with a mixture of shock, grief and guilt after a high school friend’s husband committed suicide. I didn’t know the gal that well, but my friend and I are soul sisters; we have known each other for 20 years; I came back to my relationship with God in the small church she planted in Delaware; we have shared our darkest demons with each other; and I just plain love her.  So, her hurts are my hurts and she’s been going through a lot as it is.  While I have not had the same reaction I had to the last suicide, it’s still too close to home because of how it affected someone I care so much about.

I never thought I would be able to relate in an almost intimate way with a person that ended their own life.  But as my life fell out from under me a few years ago, I became quite familiar with the level of sheer desperation and despair it takes to legitimately contemplate suicide.

When I had a psychotic break after the fraying rope that held my sadness and terror at bay for 29 years finally gave way, when I relived all of the abuse in vivid detail for the first time in my life, when I finally realized that my own mother molested me, I wanted to die.  When I also lost the two most important and supportive people in my life at the time – my boyfriend who I thought I was going to marry and my best friend – because of how I acted as my mind failed me in the worst way, I simply couldn’t stand the thought of being a part of this world anymore.

As I sat for what felt like hours with a steak knife to my wrist, all I wanted was for the memories and emotions to stop. I needed relief, peace, an escape from all of the pain. I had tried everything, I thought and I just couldn’t see any other way out. 

Thankfully, I had hastily saved this adorable little fur face from the pound in a brief moment of (slight) sanity that month.

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Okay, so getting her was also kind of an eff you to the ex boyfriend, because we had talked seriously about getting a dog when he moved in, but I digress. 

Little did I know, my crazy freckled dog would save my life that night.  I’m convinced that, even as young as she was, she picked up on what I was feeling because right as I intended to dig the blade into my skin, she forced her little muzzle between my hands and sat at my feet, insisting that I love on her with an immediacy she had never shown before. The debilitatingly dark trance I had put myself in was broken just long enough for it to dawn on me that it really wasn’t just about me; I had a responsibility, if to no one else, but that little face, not to kill myself. 

I put the knife on the table.

The feelings I had been having that night didn’t go away automatically. I still struggle with all of it, and will continue to struggle. But had it not been for The Spotted Freckledog, I would have given in to my demons.  I would have, in an instant, become an (unreported) abuse statistic.  Though life really is worth living, I was immesurably close to being the jumper.  I was this close to making my own friends and family experience the unfathomable shock, grief and guilt over my death.

I’m eternally grateful that my dog saved my soul. 

Nowadays, when my darkness resurfaces and interferes with my life, even a little, I’m terrified of returning to that hell.  It’s why I stick with therapy, why I write, why I create.  It’s why I have finally decided to have weight loss surgery to free myself of the chains of morbid obesity brought on by the abuse. It’s why I’m here sharing this with you right now. I’m afraid that if I don’t let it out, it will consume me again. 

I know this post might make you uncomfortable, and I’m sorry for that, but I was truly lost and felt like I had no one to turn to (I wish I had been a part of this wonderful blogging community at the time). My hope is that if someone chances across my blog in their own desperation and sees that, although it’s not always easy, life can go on, that there can be joy despite suffering, and that they are not alone in this world, it will break their dark trance just long enough that they, too, put down the knife. Maybe my suffering won’t have been for nothing.

Maybe no one will ever needs my words in that way (I certainly hope that is the case).  But if you happen to be that person, please know that you are not alone.  I am here thinking of you and I am here to talk to.  I can’t make it all better, but I can listen without judging. Please don’t give in. Please keep fighting. Please reach out, spill your guts, and live this oddly magical life with me.  It’s worth it.  You are worth it. 💛

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What a Dump

I have to get some things off my chest and out of my mind.  Ive been bottling things up. Feeling depressed. I haven’t been able to create much lately.  I’m not sleeping well.  I’m sad, lonely, overwhelmed, frustrated, exhausted.  I can’t keep it all in anymore.

My work-life balance has been way out of whack for weeks now.  March was incredibly busy, and April hasn’t let up. My boss is going to be out for another week, leaving me to run the show yet again (which I get to repeat in May and June – making it four months in a row).

Work consumes a majority of my life these days. I didn’t leave until just shy of 11 pm last night.  I’ll be working a good portion of this weekend.  I’ve got trial looming in the next couple weeks.     Plus I have to be this *person* at work, who clients vibe with and therefore want to pay, who knows her shit at all times, who has confidence even if she doesn’t feel it, who doesn’t make mistakes, miss deadlines, or fail to communicate regularly with clients.  It’s a lot, and it’s exhausting; especially with life’s curveballs.

I’ve continued on my quest to be more social, attending networking/community events with my growing circle of networking friends.  Yet I seem to feel more alone than ever. Case in point, I had some fun work news to share this week and no one answered my calls, no one responded by text. I had no one in my personal life to share it with.  It made me quite sad.  I wish I had more people I could call on (and I do mean actually call – texting leaves me unsatisfied and unfulfilled – hearing someone’s voice is so much better).

I think I’m still in shock and grieving over recent deaths in my corner of the universe too.  My first secretary, Shirley, suddenly died of liver cancer. Kara Tippets, who I didn’t have the pleasure of knowing personally, but was a spiritual inspiration in my life (I started going back to church while following her blog) recently passed away.  Of course, there has also been the news that my favorite high school teacher, a super hero in my life, is in hospice care.

My first experience with death as a young child (my Grandpa Andy’s funeral) left me extremely confused and scared.  When my great grandma died when I was 18, I had no skills and no support to work through it.  I haven’t had anyone in my life who could help me navigate my grief and I think I tend to revert back to that chilhood state in the face of death. 

I also haven’t really given myself a chance to process my feelings after seeing my best friend’s two year old have a seizure at a family barbeque a couple weekends ago.  As one of only three adults (of about 20 present) who didn’t completely freeze or break down, being the one to be on the phone with 911, wasn’t easy.  I’d do it again in a heartbeat, no question about that, because I love my friend and I adore her kids.  It was a bit traumatic, though. 

Watching a child go through all of that, being afraid for his life, watching as he was so confused and scared as he slowly came to, seeing the fear in his eyes as the doctors examined him all brought up feelings about my own childhood I didn’t know I had.  It reminded me of the story my mom tells about the seizure I had after I ran head first at full speed into the bathroom counter. Seeing my friend and her husband be so incredible for their baby made me wonder if I got the same kind of support when I needed it most.  My suspicions that I didn’t were realized when it came out in a talk with my mom about my friend’s kiddo that my parents didn’t even take me to the doctor after my seizure.  They didn’t even get me checked out.

Of course, my mom’s recent relapse into extremely poor boundaries and narcissism have triggered a storm of things inside me too. 

Last, but certainly not least, the universe is forcing me to wait a while before I get to take the next step towards the weight loss surgery.  I couldn’t get an appointment with the nutritionist until April 29.  It feels like a lifetime and the excitement I was feeling about this process has considerably waned because of it.   I’m trying not to be discouraged,  because honestly, it’s probably for the best.  Starting a diet right now?  Hah! But it’s still disappointing.

I wish I had better things to share.  More positivity to spread.  Light. Spirit.  Fun.  Something.  I feel like I’m back sliding emotionally.  Things were going so well and now I’m down in the funk again.  I need to get out. 

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Some Days

Today has been a shit ass day. This week has been a shit ass week. I want to crawl into a hole, cry, and never come out. My anxiety is in quite the state and I’m kicking my ass all over the place in my brain. From spraying gasoline all over myself the other day to feeling like an idiot in Court this morning, and getting stood up on a business dinner date tonight, this week can shove it. I quit.

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Happy

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I feel like I should be it, but I’m not.
I feel like it surrounds me, but my walls are up and I still can’t break through to let it in.

Intellectual capability and emotional intelligence are on vastly different ends of the spectrum.  I know what it is supposed to look like, can spout off a hundred synonyms for it, but being it? Not a clue.

Just when I think I have the hang of it. As I begin to believe it isn’t a myth made in the minds of idyllic youth,
I’m back down again. Withdraw, isolate, give in to the depression as it rolls in like fog in the night.

Those who have it live wholeheartedly,  says Brené Brown (aka #VulnerabilityTED). To live wholeheartedly is to truly believe you are loved and are worthy of love.
I am neither.  I am neither. I am neither.
Except I am loved; this I know.  I still don’t have it.

Maybe I’m scared of it.  Maybe I need to face the fact that I don’t feel worthy of it.  Then I can figure out how to move forward.  I’ve been trying to dismiss the idea every time it comes up as a thought.  Bad thoughts *swat* dead like a fly. I’ve gotten pretty good at turning them off when I notice them. Or I rationalize,  logic, etc. etc. my way around the thought until it’s my bitch and I can stop thinking about it for a while.

But that I’m not worthy of it? I mean,  that kind of makes sense.  As for how that makes me feel? Not a clue.