Living Black & White

Woke up this morning and got started on my day, thinking I’d enjoy my day off work. I didn’t have any plans besides reading and catching up on the blogs I follow religiously, and get some needed study time in.

I did that a little bit (except for the studying part), but couldn’t help noticing that I was feeling really strange. Like I don’t exist. Like I don’t even have a name. I tried saying my name a few times, hoping to feel some recognition or “togetherness”, but it just didn’t sound right. It was as though the name didn’t belong to me. Like I’m no one. Not part of this world. Just floating somewhere, and I don’t even know where. How am I? I don’t even know if I am. There’s nothing. Just emptiness.

That continued on for most of the day. I attempted to study, but just couldn’t focus, no matter how hard I tried. So once again, I put my book aside. I can’t remember anything else from the day up until my therapy session. It’s been a long 2 weeks between sessions. Way too long.

It didn’t quite go the way I had planned. Not that I plan my sessions, but I at least know more or less what I want to talk about or what issues to address. I was surprised by the direction it ended up going in. We spoke about my excessive suicidal ideation over the past two weeks. She told me she was worried about me, and the truth is, I’m worried too. It just seems to be getting worse. We agreed that I would consider admission to hospital for a small amount of time (maybe a few days), which is something I never seriously considered before. I had thought about it once or twice in the past, but for the briefest few minutes. This time though, I think it might just be necessary and a good thing.

My therapist pointed out my black and white thinking during our conversation. I didn’t recognize that’s what was happening. After our session though I realized that I had been in “all or nothing” mode during our entire session. If she hadn’t mentioned that thinking pattern I wouldn’t have even known I was in it, and I wouldn’t have realized that I’d been doing it the whole time. I really should start noticing it from now on. I’ve never paid much attention to it. Here’s what Wikipedia has to say about this thought process:

Splitting (also called black-and-white thinking or all-or-nothing thinking) is the failure in a person’s thinking to bring together the dichotomy of both positive and negative qualities of the self and others into a cohesive, realistic whole. It is a common defense mechanism used by many people. The individual tends to think in extremes (i.e., an individual’s actions and motivations are all good or all bad with no middle ground).

I feel really horrible. I feel like the worst client ever (did I just do it again?). Replaying the session back in my head and trying to see things from another perspective other than my own, I realize that the things I said could possibly have made her feel like I was “attacking” her and her skills as a Psychologist. Which wasn’t my intention at all. I think she’s the most amazing therapist. I told her in the beginning when she asked me about my suicide plan, that I didn’t want to talk to her about it, because I always feel invalidated by her, and that she doesn’t take me seriously when talking about that topic. She explained why she says what she says during those times, and I finally get it. She wasn’t invalidating me, she wasn’t careless about it, she was encouraging me to see my own strength and resilience. And now that I understand, I’m grateful for it and to her.

She pushed me today and I didn’t like it. I didn’t like it at all. But she knows what she’s doing, and like she says, therapy isn’t always easy.

I’m feeling really shitty, embarrassed and weird about it. Shitty, weird, embarrassed, and exhausted. I just want to crawl into a hole and hide away for a while. My bed will have to do instead.

Aftermath

She sleeps
But gets no rest
Don’t close your eyes
Don’t look at them
The glass shatters
Cutting her open

Blood stains on the floor
She hides her eyes
So the real bruises
Can not be seen
Who lives in this body?
It does not belong

Whispers in the dark
Silent screams echo in her mind
The sword of darkness
Piercing the inner thread
Of all she once was
Only shattered pieces remain

She will hide underground
Hide from the world
Not daring to step outside
A touch frightens her
But oh how she longs
To have you hold her hand

She will see the light soon
Now only a distant memory
Lay here with her
Sleep in the darkness
Together
Until sunrise

Missing…

Today I hate you. I hate how angry I’m feeling at you. I hate that I can’t send you a message and tell you just how much I miss you. I hate that it’s so agonizingly painful to feel this attachment, but I can’t imagine not having it anymore. I hate how since yesterday this longing for you just builds with every hour that passes, and even when I distract myself, the thought never goes away for long. I hate how it seems you don’t understand how hard this is for me. I hate that I feel you’ve forgotten me. I hate that I’m not able to trust you completely when you say you won’t abandon me… Because right now I feel abandoned. I hate that you haven’t sent me any indication that you’re still here for me. I hate how afraid I am of telling you these things. I hate how scared and alone I feel. But most of all I hate how I don’t hate you, *”not even close… Not even a little bit… not even at all.”

miss-you-best-high-defination-hd-wallpaper-free

*Borrowed this part from “10 Things I Hate About You”.

Frustrated With Myself (Again)

Yesterday was a weird day.

It all started when my therapist sent me a message confirming our appointment for later that morning. I felt emotionally cut off from her. It had been too long between sessions. I thought to myself “I don’t need therapy (or her) anymore”, but another part still wanted her (and I know I will always want her, even when I don’t “need” her anymore). The part that was indifferent had a far more active role in my mind though.

It continued during the session. I could hear myself saying all these good and positive things, but I lacked emotion. I was fully present and attentive when my therapist was mentioning some stuff about her and answered the questions I asked her, but when it came to ME and MY stuff, I felt disconnected from my feelings. I felt like I was “on the surface” instead of “down deep”. I couldn’t connect to ME. There were a couple of moments where I got really angry at technology and felt I was going to throw something, but that’s it. No other emotions.

Then it was time for work. My final training shift. Sunday we skipped training as the manager wasn’t there. Walking into the store I felt tired and not too well. All I wanted to do was go back home and sleep (I woke up this morning with a cold/flu so that’s probably why I felt so crap last night). But being so new I didn’t want to take any chances. The store was way too noisy. There was too much stimulation around me, and I felt triggered. The lights were too bright. There were too many people. Too many voices. I felt myself starting to lose control, and I was about to go tell the manager that I’m quitting, but then someone close by dropped a book and I almost jumped out of my skin. That quickly zapped that thought out of my head. But I started feeling claustrophobic and anxiety ripped through me. I was trying to remember all the tools I have learned up until this point, but I just couldn’t focus. I hit a blank. I felt tears well up, and I walked to the back office, to the furthest corner I could find and tried to get the tears to just not come, but come, they did. But I managed to stop the majority of it. I felt so overwhelmed. I forced myself to stay busy with the new books that had come in that I saw lying on the table, and proceeded to pick them up one by one and read the back (just like my therapist had suggested in our session). My shift was starting in a few minutes so I wasn’t neglecting my job at least. I really didn’t want to go back out there. It felt like my inner child was kicking and screaming, begging me to stay where it was safe, but I told her it would be alright and went out anyway.

It was much the same. Too many people, which I find intimidating. The smallest noise (the sound of someone typing on the keyboard for example) made me want to yell “stop it, just stop it” and cover my ears. I was still so jumpy (yet anyone that knows me will tell you I’m always quick to startle anyway) and my senses were on extra high alert. I’m naturally sensitive to my external environment (even as a baby apparently), but most of the time I can deal with it. But in moments like these, I find it especially difficult. It’s times like this when even the texture of my clothing bothers me and I just want to rip it all off. I don’t know exactly what it is that sometimes takes this sensitivity up beyond what is even normal for me, all I know is that it happens.

At one point, I had to help a customer, with my manager standing there watching. I didn’t trust myself. I felt panic and anxiety rise up. I looked at my manager and I think she could see it, as she smiled and said “you can do it”. But I didn’t feel like I could. The pressure was just too much. I wanted to run out and not look back. But I forced a smile and greeted the customer, painfully aware that I was visibly shaking. I then suddenly took on “robot mode”, and can’t remember the rest of that interaction. It was as if I had just shut down. When I was “back” the first thing I remember is the manager telling me “good job”. I can only hope I was friendly with the customer and didn’t come across as a complete idiot. But the manager looked happy, so I guess it’s safe to say that I didn’t mess up.

I know I should be kind to myself. But how can I be when this shit happens? Just when I think I’ve taken 1 or 2 steps forward, it’s like I take 20 steps back. It’s frustrating.

Change

I started a new job on Wednesday. My range of emotions are vast.

I’m excited about this job, and enjoying it. Other times I feel fearful and just want to stay home in bed and drown out the world. I’m still trying to find balance. I feel completely off kilter and not quite sure how to handle this. As with any change, it takes a while for the body and mind to come together in harmony again I suppose. And as much as I like change, that fact doesn’t make it that much easier to deal with when it actually happens. Alternating between periods of feeling “I belong here” and “what the hell am I doing here?”, and “what if I fuck up?”.

I no longer have unlimited time to spend on my blog or other people’s blogs, my emails are falling behind, and I haven’t watched TV in days. It feels a little strange to not have that so much anymore. But it’s a good thing. I just really need to find that sweet spot. Anxiousness has reared it’s ugly head again.

I found in the first few days, I was testing the people I work with. Being awkward, saying the weirdest shit because I’m feeling nervous and uncomfortable, only to find them laughing at all of my jokes and paying complete attention to me, almost like they’re eating a meal and savoring every bite. This is strange. I thought I was putting them off. Definitely a good group of people… And it seems I fit right in. After all, anyone who can accept me through my awkwardness is alright in my books. I’m much more comfortable around them now and the awkward moments have mostly disappeared.

Working night shifts, my sleeping patterns have changed too. It feels strange to get home late, past my bed time, and sleep in until 8am. But I’m slowly starting to feel better. Yesterday was the first time in ages that I woke up feeling as though I had a good nights rest. The constant fatigue seems to have gone. So maybe I’ve found a good sleeping arrangement and should continue this even on my days off. Maybe it’s a combination of having a job, socializing, and Vitamin B, Iron and Magnesium supplements that have also helped me feel physically stronger and less mentally exhausted.

They say change is as good as a holiday. Well, it takes a while to get your mind fully into holiday mode too, so I’ll go with that.

The Calm…

The past couple of weeks I was in a bit of a “crisis mode”. You only need to look at my last few posts to know that.

But yesterday that slowly started to change. And today… Well, today is different.

I had a few moments of reflection yesterday and earlier today, and learned a few things about myself which I might post about at a later stage. I’ve been working on something from my past, as well as deciding that it was time to let go of my last relationship completely. A weight seems to have lifted. The darkness, the negative energy I had been holding with regards to that, has dissipated. I can breathe…

I indulged in some self care this morning, which is something I desperately needed. I just didn’t know how much.

My mind has slowed down. No more racing thoughts tumbling over one another. Complete peace. I can’t remember the last time I felt so… Calm.

No overwhelming emotions. No anxiety. Not happy. But not sad. An inner stillness…

Decided to go sit outside on the balcony for a little while. The sun was veiled behind what looked like mist that had taken over the sky. It was pleasantly warm. Not a breathe of wind. Just still. Quiet. Is my environment reflecting me, or am I reflecting it? Maybe it’s both. I feel at one with the world. I smiled at a stranger walking down the street. She smiled back and waved, and I felt a warmth deep inside. I could hear her singing as she continued walking past. Connection. Moments. That’s what life’s about.

I would love to just hug someone right now. And have them hug me back. But not just anyone. Someone I have a connection with. I’m having a “spread the love moment”. Maybe you can do that. If you’re near to someone who you have a special connection with, and even if you’re angry at that person, go give them a hug. No talking, just being mindful of the moment. It’s about pure, genuine connection. Take it in completely. It might just change something.

And there’s something else surrounding me too…
Hope.

The calm before the storm? No. The storm has passed.

(Decided to do some quote searching and found these gems. Click on them for the full image)