Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Yesterday afternoon, guilt started to wash over me, then a fear I couldn't shake.  I was freaked out for the rest of the day and went to bed with the cold sweats, twisting and turning in a semi-conscious trance that I couldn't wake out of.  Finally I forced myself awake and got out of bed.  I tried to sit and watch TV, it was deafening.  I went outside with Brut and shook with sobs of fear.  Help me.  Help me.  Help me.  The tears wouldn't stop.  I was scared to death of what I was about to embark upon.  There is a reason, a very good reason why I have waited this long to talk to someone outside the safety of my home.  I am about to break every law that I have been sworn to.  Doesn't matter if it's in baby steps, doesn't matter if I only tell her one thing that has happened to me or purge my entire story on her, I will be breaking everything.  Three years to finally utter the words to my psychiatrist.  Even if it takes that long with my therapist, just the fact that I am going to see her, is a violation.  And I am afraid. 

So here is my plan.  I am going to take my dog Brut for a long walk at the park before the appointment and take him with me.  Just me and him alone and then have him wait in the truck, so I know he is there.  He is my most avid protector out of the bunch and he takes that job pretty seriously while I completely rely on it. 

I don't feel the need to bolt.  I haven't changed my mind.  I haven't come this far to turn and run but I can't hide the fact that I am scared.  It's been a long time since I talk to someone and that was before I knew everything about my past.  Now I'm at a completely different stage of the game.  Just writing this out has been scary.  Legitimate fears.  Current fears.  All I can say is, thank God for Brut. 

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Don't Look Down

I can't get over the gigantic weight that has been pressing on my chest and pushing me over the edge that has finally been lifted.  They say never look down and I have been bending over the edge with this heavy pressure that has been pressing me over this high cliff.  Just like that it was lifted.  I am impressed with how there is sudden balance in my life.  Both my husband and I are breathing again.  This past week I have become very much aware of the amount of pressure that was lifted off of both of us and how heavy it actually was.  While I wouldn't change a thing about my decision of therapy and what lead up to it, I would have never guessed that this boulder that has been crushing me would crumble.  So for now I am just enjoying what this decision has done so far and my god, I might even have a little bit of hope.  Not bad for someone who doesn't even know what the freaking word means.  :) 

Monday, June 27, 2011

You Mean There's More???

I am still depressed.  I don't know why.  I mean I had one session of therapy.  What do you mean that wasn't enough to change my whole life, yet ??  :)  I'm starting to get impatient already.  I want to purge everything and get on with feeling better.  Which I find rather hilarious.  And I'm chuckling to myself that I just had to wait until the last minute to get on board.  Had to make absolutely certain that I had tried every angle and exhausted all possibilities so I'd be running on empty in the door.  Had to make sure I went the full length before having to surrender.  Yep, I had to be certain.  Absolutely certain.  There was going to be no doubling back in self doubt. And of course now that I am here, I want to rush like bullet through all the crap and get to the good stuff.  lol  But I'm smiling.  I've got about a million places I want to start and I am trying to find a way to say them all at the same time.  As I'm sure the "newness" of going to therapy will wear off and you're probably all laughing at me, I am reveling in it for now.  I am enjoying the feeling of making the decision for myself to go and did it all on my terms.  That is huge when you are talking about sharing your deepest secrets with another party.  And I just glowing.  What a fantastic way to start my new life that will be happening.  I am looking forward to it and is just the coolest thing.  I think for once, I am proud of myself.  Really proud.  And as long as I don't try to get all over in the next session, I'll be just fine.  :)  I like this feeling of taking charge of my own life, I think I could really get into it!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Therapy 101

This is how it started:

I walked into the small waiting room, she is in with a colleague, hands me legal papers to read and says she will be with me.  As I began to read the blood drains from my face.  Triggers.  Shaken to the core, she calls me in her office as I sit locked in stark white terror.  I choked out a strangled explanation for my fears as I sit frozen, unable to move.  She begins to explains.  I listen but don't move.  Somewhere I find that this woman is not out to hurt me and as we move along, my hands begin to relax in my lap.  Still caught in my fears, the beginning is slow going as she asks questions and I answer what I am willing to share.  Permission she has fully given me.  It is my show.

Her questions are all over the place.  Getting snippets of this and that.  I feel myself take a leap as I start to come to, I feel the chair underneath me and let myself sink in.  The life comes to my eyes, I actually smile.  It is going to be OK.

A few highlights:
She asked if I journal.  I told her yes and I blog.  When she asked if she could read them.  I said no to this blog, but gave her the address for the dog blog.  When I told her I wanted to write a book about my life and one about my dog Brut.  She asked if I wanted to bring Brut into a session. I laughed out loud.  I love Brut, but he's just too much dog for something like that!!  Although I thought it was cool she suggested it.

She asked me to tell her what hope was.  I just stared at her with a huge question mark on my face.  Though I've used the word and know it has a meaning, I never realized I had no internal meaning for it and didn't know what in the hell it was.  That was an eye opener.

She spoke of her own experience and expertise with grief while sharing about herself.  The word was mentioned several times.  I didn't say anything but I have known for some time this is where I need to start.

Near the last half of the session, I was opening up and talking with my hands.  She sat back, smiled at me after a comment I'd made regarding the way I need to operate and told me with a giant smile on her face, "That I had made her day."

After years and years of being looked down on for some reason or another by many different people I have met, I was being treated as an equal.  I was flabbergasted.  I can not remember the last time that has happened with a stranger or even with someone else I have known.  I walked out of there higher than a kite. I even signed the paper that had thrown me into such terror.  I wasn't going operate on fear from my past, present or future.  She told me I was going to be a challenge and we were going to be creative about it, because I had mentioned that I can't stand be crammed into that box and she loved to think outside of it.

My husband laughed his ass off when I told her what she said about me being a challenge.  Let me talk to her, I'll tell her what she's in for!!!  God bless him, I have put him through the ringer to get to this point.  I think he is happy it went so well and has no problem handing me off to someone else!!  And it was so worth it.           

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

The Tool

As I tiptoe inside, quietly closing the door behind me, I take a minute to catch my breath.  The lifelong sprinting marathon I've have been running to cross this threshold is now is here before me.  I don't dare go back.  I sit with my back against the door for what seems an eternity.  The shock and horror of the world I left behind only inches from my back.  I am frozen.  Unsure of what to do next.  My body becomes stiff from staying in the same position.  I finally stretch to stand, fumbling for a light switch.  As the room becomes flooded with the light, the vastness of space is too much to bear for this once chaotic mind.  It is empty.  EMPTY.  There is nothing here.  All of my years of sweat and pain to make it somewhere past my past and I find nothing.

I quickly turn off the light and crumble to the floor.  "NOOOOOO!  This can't be my treasure for all of my slavery.  You PROMISED!  You PROMISED everything would be here, that I if I lived, it would be here.  What is this??"  Defeated, I cry out,  "How could you do this to me?  Where are you??  Where am I??  This is not what you said it would be."  Choking back my sobs, I defiantly stand on wobbly legs, shaking my fist at the space, I spit out, "I'll do it myself."  I open the door for a crack of light, and start walking only to find I've circled  back at the door.   I can't move forward and I can't leave the door.  All my tools are on the other side of it and I have no idea have to operate in this space.  It is foreign ground with no translator.  So I sit and wait.  And wait.  Wanting so many times to go back through that door and never return to this space again just for a taste of knowing something.  Here I am lost and confused and there are so many things I don't understand.  What is a future without a past?  What is a future, period?

Months go by, motions are carried out when in my last cry for help, I see a new tool sitting at my feet.  I reach down to grab it.  I have used one of these in the past, but it is different than before.  It is of equal measure to my needs.  I am grateful for the new tool.  I am excited about the new tool.  All of my old ones weren't working anymore.  I look up and see the empty space in a whole new light.   This space wasn't empty because my toils were in vain, it was empty because it was my future given to me to design and fill with anything I wanted.  This tool was the beginning step to utilizing that space for MY desires and having the future I always dreamed of with the help I need to do just that.

And the Promise holds true.  

*My first appointment with my new therapist is this Thursday*                     

Friday, June 17, 2011

BOTTLED

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Feelings, Medications, and Options

I have really been struggling to write.  My words sound broken and my sentences and ideas feel choppy to me.  I have struggled with having any emotion as if there is a blockage in my frontal lobe.  At the same time I feel like I have an opening in the back of my head as if a window has been open and a rush of fresh air is creating a cleansing.  I am OK with this for the most part, except in my writing.  I have always written to feel and I feel to write, emotions have always been the building blocks of my expression and now I feel like I can't express myself.

I don't know if it comes across to anyone else, but I feel the crackling in my thoughts and how I can not find the right words and ideas that run so smoothly thru my head.  There are points through the day when I feel a welling of tears swelling in my eyes that can not be released.  While at the same time I feel this cool breeze through my brain telling me everything is alright.  I almost don't whether I want to laugh or cry or do both.

On the sixth day of taking my new anti-depressant I felt like I'd smoked a bong.  I immediately quit taking it.   I had no intentions of going through a drug induced mania or any other side effects that may come with this or any other medications.  I have made it three years without anti-depressants and realized that adding chemicals to my body was not going to solve my problems, when 90% of them are in my head.  I am quite comfortable being on the meds I am currently on and would like to continue weaning off them instead of adding more complications.

The great thing about realizing there are options is that it opens the door for more options.  Just being able to express my thoughts and feelings about my first appointment with my therapist, gave me more choices to choose how I wanted to handle our first time meeting.  I have decided to meet with her for the two hour intake.  It is so easy for me to back myself into a corner and cram myself inside this box where I am trapped with no way out, that just having the option to have options helped me to pop out that box and stand on my own two feet.  I would also like to thank everyone who commented on that post with such love and support.  What a wonderful feeling to have such a rally behind me to encourage me on my journey.  It is greatly appreciated.

So all in all, I am OK.  Little ups and downs.  A few tears, some laughter.  Stopping and going.  I am anxious and calm.  Some excitement, some stresses, but I am here.  And while there are many days I don't realize what a gift that can be, today I do feel it is.  

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Why?



The healing process that happens between my dogs and I is mind blowing.  Somehow they are able to reach that place deep down inside of me and tap into it.  It doesn't take any special talent or coaxing, I don't have to be thinking about anything and somehow they just zero in on my heart.

Brut, my Bipolar dog, is completely obsessed with food.  Violently obsessed.  I have had to eliminate treats from training unless I separate him from the other dogs.  My relationship with Brut is one of a special nature due to his particular fears and aggressions and one thing I have learned is respecting Brut is a must. It is a trust that  goes both ways, especially when food is involved.  I take many things into consideration with Brut and food, he is only threatened by other dogs though I am always cautious with him.

We were alone in the living with a puzzle cube that had treats inside, that Brut has to roll around to get the goodies out.  I had to pick up the cube to move it, which meant Brut might go after the cube at the same time.  Instead of acting out of fear or just grabbing it,  I told him to sit and stay, while I moved the cube.  As this instinct kick in with me, he responded beautifully.  He was alert, he was calm and he was radiating.  I didn't try to control him, I didn't put him in a difficult situation that made him chose between his instincts and me, I gave him the respect he deserved by setting up a safe environment that he could flourish in.  I didn't try to test him with something he couldn't handle by putting us both at risk because he counts on me help him help himself and as a result he was doing fantastic and having a great time.

 

We were clicking along with our new game when I felt the piercing in my heart as Brut looked to me with those beautiful carmel eyes and I burst into tears, thinking, why can't I be this way with myself?  Why am I not this gentle and considerate of myself?  This fabulous dog who gets such a bad rap with his aggression was literally glowing with the attention and safety I was providing for him knowing how to protect him.  I was giving him what he needed to succeed in spite of himself.  Why can't I do it for myself?

I have never tried to change Brut or eliminate any of his aggressive nature that he has with dogs, I have learned to work with it, shape it, and mold it to work for him rather than against him.  Why I am having such a hard time doing that for myself now?  Where is the love and respect that I have for Brut with myself?  Why am I not able to set up those parameters of safety and security for myself like I do for Brut?  Why can't I be understanding with me?   My depression is no secret.  I already know my answer and I'm still not ready to face it.  I can't.  Because it is me.  I am the one who can't look at that girl that I keep shoving down in the bellows. I am the one who will not forgive her and has no plans on it.  I am the one who wants to destroy her.    Why do I keep fighting the vicious battle instead of seeing who she really is?    Why can't I see her like I see Brut?

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Lord hep me, I made an appointment

I talked to my new therapist yesterday and we set up a time a couple of weeks from now, at the end of the conversation she said to expect to be there for two hours.  "Two hours?" I blurted out.  You've got to be kidding me, I thought.  What in the world were we going to talk about for two hours?  I already have a list of items checked off in my mind of topics I won't be bringing up, not to mention that an hour would be my pushing my limit before I mentally check out talking with a complete stranger. 

There was another thing that was off.  When we initially spoke on the phone, she had made an offer of meeting for an hour without any charge to see if I would be interested in continuing.  That is what I was banking on when I called her back to set up the appointment, but didn't express that to her because I had a mental block when she announced the appointment was for two hours. 

I am trying to let go and not go in control mode while wanting to be assertive with my own personal needs and comfort level.  I know she does not understand the gravity of what it took to call her nor the years it has taken to come to this point, but I do.  I don't want to jump just because I have to.  I have solid reason for why I have taken the course that I have and what has lead to this decision.  I plan on calling her back and discussing the option that she originally mention and that I want to take her up on that first before I make any final decision.  Which is a huge step for me.  Normally I would let it slide and worry and fret and put myself under someone else's control because I would feel I don't have any.  I would think I am at her whim, which would put me back in the victim role and set myself up for failure.  I also realize I don't have to be nasty or curt with her, with a "she should know" attitude, because she doesn't know.  She has no idea who I am and I don't know who she is, but for my own protection and well being I have to step up and make the first move. 

So I am a little nervous, I am always better at writing than talking, especially when I feel threatened by an outside force.  I usually just cave.  But I want to make this work for me.  It is so difficult for me not to lay down the law in my head of what I will and won't do.  If she hadn't made the offer, I probably wouldn't have question anything, but she did and that was part of the agreement with myself to try.  Just try.  So when she stated the session would be two hours, it completely threw me off guard.  She asked if that was a problem.  I was so thrown, I said no.  Thank goodness I have some time to work it out.  I am not in a panic, I'm not freaking out, I'm not paranoid, I'm just not comfortable with the arrangement and I have the power to change it.  What may sound like a minor detail, is like giant steps for me to even begin to see from this perspective.  I have my two cents worth on how I want to handle my care.  I have done it this far, I not going to let it be strip away by old behaviors and fear.  Even just clarifying how I feel will make a difference, even if I do go for the two hours.  Isn't that what progress is all about?   

Monday, June 6, 2011

Surrender...

I have finally come to a place where I can not do this alone anymore.  I have continued to crash into this dark place where I have become swallowed by the thought of death.  Where the thought of dying has given me a rush without any fear.  I have wrestled with the thoughts of medication and therapy for some months now and after a long, hard battle with myself, have given in to both.  I called a therapist in our area who I spoke with briefly over the phone and I started taking an anti-depressant that my doctor prescribed.  I don't know which was more difficult.  I have been fighting counseling for several years.  My husband and I have talked about it several times, but I would always back out before actually trying.  The nature of my abuse was just too extreme to trust to talk to anyone else.  The step I took in talking to my psych doctor about it was huge and I have realized that the only way to get unstuck from this point to to talk to a professional. 

As far as taking an anti-depressant, well, I'm not thrilled about, but it has given some relief to the vultures always circling around my head.  I do believe it is a temporary thing and will help me from my ventures into hell.  I was already scaring the crap out of my husband, but when I became scared I knew I needed help.  I have taken many trips to the underworld, but this last one was getting a little too close. 

I am a fighter, I don't give in easy.  It takes a great force to make me succumb, even if it is for my own good, but it has to be so bad that it is my decision or I will fight harder.  Both of these decisions have brought me to my knees and into mass amount of confusion.  Contradictions that have thrown me up against the walls while beating me with a two by four.  And now after the bell has rung and the match has come to close, I am OK with both choices.  It makes me very aware of have far I have come and what I have been through that I'm not that same person I was before.  I realize how strong I am and if push comes to shove I have the power to fight back.  I can use that power to my advantage and actually learn to love and heal myself.  It is all going to be scary, but I think now that I made the choice I can do it.  I may not have a lot of trust in others, but I more faith in myself than I realized and that is what I will be relying on to carry me through.  Wish me luck!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Cracking


There has been a crack in my Future Mirror since writing the post.  The process of the visualization and putting it on paper finally explained to me what I could not see.  As it came to form it gave me a concrete image of thoughts I was unable to coerce together for a repeated actions that I could not fully understand my reasons for doing them.

That tiny crack has broken a dam in my mind of what I perceive of the future:  It will always be my past.  This belief is interwoven into every fiber of my life.  I base every thought on this on this idea because I have nothing else to judge it by.  I have never had any thoughts of a future or anything beyond my past because it simply didn't exist.  I have been going through the motions to the next day or make an appointment for next week, which is simply out of habit, but to believe there is actually life without my past has never entered my mind.  That and I wasn't suppose to be alive.

My inner most struggle is living.  It is difficult to live when you have no concept of a future.  That any of your hard works are actually moving you forward when there is no forward.  There is no visions that are any more than a dream of someplace.  There is no understanding that what was, will never be again.  There is no trust strong enough to believe there will never be the same fears and pain.  I have continued to live under this regiment even though I have only been in touch with it in my mind.  I don't know how to believe things can change.  Another word in my vocabulary that makes little sense to me.

My mind has been flooded with this breakthrough, along with a rush of creativity that I can not get down on paper fast enough.  Still afraid of the end that will come when I am swallowed by that dark hole again, but this time I have a secret weapon.  The crack in the Future Mirror is trickling water.  Water is my healing element.  The vision of my past is changing.  The future is pouring in on it.  And I am continuing to heal.