My Apologies….

Despite my best efforts to keep up with the blogs I follow, I haven’t been very good at it.  There are days I am barely good at getting out of bed.  Please forgive me, and know I am reading as often as I can, and you are all in my thoughts and prayers.

 

Title…

I don’t know if I ever explained why I used the title I did for my blog.

I come from a community of people who are constantly telling me to smile. And well meaning people who tell me to “think positive”.

So, for the most part I hide my feelings inside.  I pretend everything is ok, even when my arms are cut up, or I have spent the morning crying.  It also refers to my signature move- stuff and avoid.

There is so much junk hiding in me, so many scars, and fresh wounds inside it would probably scare people away…. so those are “the things I hide inside”.

Even now, I have backslid in terms of depression, but I am keeping it hidden inside. No one knows I am constantly on the verge of tears, I am irritable and have a low tolerance for everything….

“What is it you truly desire?”

The title is a line spoken in a prime-time FOX show called Lucifer.  Im not going to get into the details of the show, if you are interested, google it.  It really is a good show.  However, Lucifer- the devil, has this power where he can look someone in the eye ask them that question and he will find out the true desires of their heart.

I need a little of that. I was thinking while I was on a walk yesterday…. I’m unhappy.  I am not content.  I am sad/angry/anxious/depressed; BUT what would it take for me to change those feelings?  What is it that I want?  What will make me happy, or at the very least “content”?

I feel as though my some of my circumstances are out of my control- our precarious financial situation for one.  The daily stress of one kid on the autism spectrum (albeit high functioning) , ADHD, with bipolar, anxiety and sensory processing disorder, and the other ADHD, anxiety and quite possibly ODD (Oppositional Defiant Disorder).  I can’t change that.  I can’t change that my husband is sick and can’t work, which leads to the financial insecurity; a vicious circle.  There are so many other factors in my life that I feel like are obstacles to happiness/contentment.  But then- is there a way to be happy/content with the current situation? Im doubtful – how can you be content when you’re insecure about the future because of finances, because of your own mental illness, because of your husband’s illness?

So I ask again- what is it I truly desire?

Answer:  I have no earthly idea.

So Many Titles…

I had so many different ideas for what to title this blog. But none of them felt quite right.

First of all, I have been reluctant to post- (disclaimer: this part is about a comment on my blog- but has nothing to do with the poster of said comment, nor does it mean I am upset with the commenter)- because recently after a more positive post a comment was made that it was nice to see something positive posted. Immediately I clammed up.  I felt like “crap, people are sick of my problems”.  But In the end I decided to just take the comment as I know it was written- as a message showing happiness for my fleeting moment of positivity.

I struggle with constructive criticism, I over analyze what people say.  What everyone else thinks means more than what I think.

But I can’t hold this all in any more.  This has been a hard week.  I can’t give you a reason, because I don’t know. I have been sad and depressed all week.  Like major regression in my symptoms.  My OCD has been over the top- to the point that I offended a person in my DBT group because I moved my seat when I heard that she had been sick- and so I explained to the group if I do stuff like that, it’s me, not them.

And I’m just tired. So tired. Tired of this life.  It never gets better. It seems like I stand up and a big bully pushes me down, over and over.  And I am tired of getting up. I have tried so hard in the past month to try to do things to “make me feel better “.  But it doesn’t work.

And I have found that even dreaming about possibilities has it’s consequences.  I keep thinking about Marilla Cuthbert, and the things she used to say to Anne when Anne would let her imagination run wild, have romantic notions etc.  It’s not practical.  It’s not useful.  Never in my life has there been anyone who encourages me to dream.  They just point out the reality.  “I get it mom I will never be on star search” (6 or 7 year old me),  “I get it (insert name here) I am not as pretty as (insert name here)” (14-16 year old me).  “I know I will never amount to much dad”.  “I know I don’t shine mom”.  “I know I can’t manage money because I have a shopping compulsion- maybe it shouldn’t be my responsibility.”  “I know my bucket list will still be undone when I die”.

I get it.  This.  This is it. It’s never going to get better, and I will stop dreaming, hoping and wishing for it to get better. I see now that it does no good, because I will never change, I will always be a compulsive overeater, with a shopping problem, and a mental illness. I have always, and will always be weak.

When I was a kid my best friend and I came up with a phrase:

“Reality is too real for us, we live in the abstract”.

Looking at it with 30 or so years of knowledge I didn’t have then- it really was more like- our reality sucks, so we choose to wish/hope/dream of how it will be better “someday”.

But I think what I have learned over the past 2 years since my breakdown- for some people- someday never comes.  For some people, it’s scraping by, barely keeping your nose above the water line forever. For some people- they’ll always wonder “what’s the point?”

And if all that isn’t enough- the school isn’t following the IEP as written for my oldest.  Here we go.  It’s giving me PTSD flashbacks of our last fight when he was in 3rd grade, and I don’t know if I have it in me.  I don’t know if I can do it again…..

Saw Mary Poppins this week.  She added another med to my list. A mood stabilizer… probably a good idea.  Ive had 2 panic attacks in the past 2 days.  It’s been a couple months since I had a full on attack.  The craps hitting the fan again and I don’t know where to hide to dodge all the crap coming my way…..

Sorry for the downer post.  I just can’t keep it in anymore….

Fat Camp

I talked with my PCP about gastric bypass vs a. medical weight loss clinic vs doing it on my own again.  He wasn’t a proponent of the bypass- he says in 17 years he’s had 2 MAYBE 3 people who were ultimately successful with bypass.  I added “because they didn’t deal with what was making them eat”. And he agreed.  And there we go.  That’s my problem.  I don’t use food as fuel.  Well, I do, but that’s not it’s only “job”.  It gives me feelings of comfort, it is always there, never disappointing me, it doesn’t judge me, it doesn’t (in the moment) hurt me.  I control what I eat, when I can’t control anything else in my life.  Then there’s the fact that I am an addict.

Addiction to food is real.  And what’s harder is that you can get clean from drugs, alcohol, cigarettes (not saying it’s easy because I know better) and then never touch the stuff again.  I will ALWAYS have to eat.  I can’t live if I I don’t.  I can’t just walk away from my addiction.

Food has always been a problem- too much, too little, way too much….and I am bigger than I have ever been.  And part of me wants to change, but part of me doesn’t want to.  If I change who will I be?  What will I replace food with?  Will I never be able to have a cookie again?  Will I ever be able to have a normal relationship with food?  Hubby says he eats until he’s full, and stops.  I rarely do.  I eat till my plate is empty like I was taught. And if there’s dessert, it would be rude to pass- right?

I do feel hungry a lot though.  My belly growls, howls and makes itself known. So sometimes when I eat it is genuine hunger.

I don’t know I guess after so many failures I don’t see anything working/changing me permanently.

Any readers out there does gastric bypass with success?  What about a physician led weight loss program?

 

 

I joined the club…

Today I joined the elite club…. the forty club, the big 4-0 as in cresting the hill (but not quite over it).  In the past decade my body has been preparing for induction into the club with grey, white and silver hair, with wrinkles, and sagging, and most recently bifocals and cataracts.

For months I have been dreading forty; like it was the end of the world as I knew it.  And yeah, I’ll admit it kinda sucks to think that THIS is as far as I have gotten at forty, but at the same time I have accomplished some things worth recognition.  I have two beautiful children, who are smart, funny and amazing- each in their own way.  I have a marriage that after almost 18 years of marriage, and 23 years together is stronger every day.  I have a brother and a sister that I adore. I have a best friend that I admire, who makes me want to be a better version of me.  I have other friends too, friends who care about me, especially when I don’t care about myself.  I have a counselor who I love. And I have finally given her her name- Princess Glitter Sparkle.  (My husband coined it, and I told her about it.). We have sat with it for about a month or so now and she said there’s just no denying it- it suits her.  And in the past decade I also discovered my faith again.  I have a relationship with God.

So yes, while in the past couple of years it seems like the crap has hit the fan, and I have a hard time seeing the good past the crap, I do have some really good things in my life.  On the especially crappy days I need to come back and read this list.

Here’s to hoping 40’s beats the pants off 30’s.

 

PollyAnna’s Spirit Lives on….

Apparently, it’s not the act of practicing gratitude that I had an issue with when PollyAnna assigned it, it was the fact that I was being told what to do.  And apparently, I have a problem with that….. who knew?

This morning I pulled out the old gratitude journal and added a couple of entries of things I was grateful for yesterday- my daughter having an amazing day at school, her being awarded quiet seat in her after school club (anyone who knows my little girl knows that’s as rare as a unicorn for her to be quiet), my son having a good time at his first lacrosse practice, and his being nominated into Upward Bound.

And if I am honest with myself, finding things to be grateful for is a tough one.  But the other night as I was brainlessly scrolling through my facebook feed I came upon this that Lysa TerKeurst had posted:

Bad attitudes breed bad attitudes.

Grumpy Hearts breed more grumpy hearts.

Ungratefulness breeds ungratefulness.

On the flip side, praising God breeds more

Reasons to praise God.

Thankfulness breeds more thankfulness.

And a person who practices both praising and thanking

Has a rare joy that very few people possess.

Today, let’s choose to be people who give praises

To our God so we can become people overflowing

With joy from our God.

~Lysa TerKeurst

Ouch! It’s true, I can rarely see things to be grateful for unless they are “huge” in my world like the things above were.  So I am working hard to be more mindful of the things I need to be grateful for, the little things that are a blessing.

And at the other end of the spectrum is my dad.  He calls me just about every day (and sometimes multiple times in a day).  I almost always pick up.  Occasionally I am having a bad day so I don’t answer, but in the past week I have talked to him 1 time on Tuesday, he called 2x on Thursday but I only was able to answer 1 time, I talked to him 1 time on Friday and he called on Sunday.  I just didn’t have it in me to talk so I ignored the call.  he called yesterday while I was teaching my co op class (only one more YAY!!!) and he left me a rude email about the fact that I must be mad at him because he has called me 3 times over the last couple days and I don’t get back to him blah blah blah.  So I get that pit in my stomach- the same one I used to get when I was a kid and knew I was going to be in trouble, and punched in the numbers.  Now let me explain- he lives in a nursing home, he refuses to pay to have a line put in his room.  So I have to go through 2 menus, get the nurses station, ask for him, they have to transfer me to a portable phone and bring the phone to him.

So- I go through all that, and when he gets on the line he proceeds to berate me for not talking to him in a long time, that he gets my voicemail too much, that I never call him.  I explain to him that it’s not an easy process to get through to him, I can’t just dial and he pick up the phone, (what I don’t explain is that I HATE talking on the phone with all of my being).  I remind him that I talk to him almost every day, and that my brother and sister don’t talk to him nearly that much.  He then moves on to being ranting and raving about how one of the nurses there looks like his step father, and does his bandage on his hand too tight, and how everyone is sick so they have locked down the floor, and how angry he is that he has to get up at 3:30 in the morning in order to be ready every day (he only has dialysis 3x a week so technically he could get up that early 3x a week and sleep in the other 4), and honestly if he weren’t so vain he wouldn’t have to get up that early.  He HAS to shave, he refuses to use an electric razor and won’t let anyone do it for him… well he is right handed, he lost his right ring finger, and has necrotic tissue and may end up losing his hand as well… so he has to do everything left handed, and he was yelling at me about it.  I wanted to ask him how all the Pepsi and devil dogs tasted now, but I held my tongue- and let him make me feel small like I always do.  He then tells me that I am volatile- what does that mean?  I asked him, he said he feels like I could have a nervous breakdown at any moment (now let’s stop here- if he feels this way WHY on God’s green earth would he provoke me, and treat me like that – oh yeah he’s a narcissist).  I told him I had a nervous breakdown two years ago, this is the aftermath.  After that he decided he didn’t want to talk anymore and hung up.

Why?  Why can’t I just cut him out of my life?  Why do I care that he’s mad at me?  Why do I listen to his condemning words and believe them?  He is alone because he drove everyone away.  We all left him at some point- me when I was 17 I left home and lived with friends of my husbands (literally strangers to me I met them for the first time the night I moved in), my mom, my sister keeps him at arms length, his long strong of girl friends after my mom and he split up, his last girlfriend/fiance of 11+ years.  He’s alone because he’s a miserable, mean human being.  And so maybe I keep answering the phone because he’s my dad, the only biological father I will ever have.  Maybe it’s because I know he’s lonely.  Maybe I still have this need to please him deep in my bones. But why do I let his words hiss in my ear, reverberate in my brain for days.  “you’re not good enough”, “you’re doing things wrong”, “you don’t love me”…. on and on.  His words are echoed by satan day after day after day… I’m all wrong.  I’m not good enough, I will never enough……

I think a big part of that is the reason I struggle with understanding the love of a Heavenly Father.  I get Jesus.  I understand His love.  But from a very young age from my father I received ridicule, condemnation, hurt….the scars are there- honestly they aren’t even scars they are gaping open sores, that he aggravates every time we talk.  It’s something my counselor and I are going to explore- how to have a relationship with him, whether I want to, the pros and cons etc. (PS new counselor still doesn’t have a name).

I have been trying to be more mindful of that nagging gremlin voice in my head that convinces me that all the bad thoughts are true- but as much as I notice the gremlin, I am still listening to him.

Another thing that my counselor and I talked about today is the fact that I can’t understand emotions.  I get the extremes- happy/joyful and angry/irritable/sad/anxious.  But everything in between I don’t get it. We were talking about her wanting me to track my moods.  I told her I have been, since the first of the year, but that I am struggling right now, because I don’t really know WHAT I feel.  The best I can explain is blah. She said that’s depression.  I guess you don’t have to be angry/irritable or crying to be depressed.  I told her for me it’s like a skein of yarn that you are trying to unravel because it’s all tangled.  I have one end untangled in a small ball and that’s happy/joyful and the other end has some untangled and rolled in to a ball and that’s angry/sad/anxious and the two are connected with this huge mess of string between them that’s everything else, and that being in the middle is confusing and uncomfortable for me.  That I would rather stay where it’s ordered, comfortable (because of familiarity not because it’s comfortable) even if that means I am sad and angry.  This blah business is hard.

Well I guess that’s all for this time.  At least I had something good to say.  Something positive to share. And I think that this new counselor and I are going to get along good- she doesn’t touch door knobs either 😉

Until next time…