Safe Travels – Part One

On Wednesday I got back from my week-long trip to see my mom and sisters. Annoyingly, I’m still recuperating from it.

I had been looking forward to this trip since it was booked. I was counting down the days. Sometimes even the hours. Last Tuesday, after coming back from group, I started to feel unsettled. “Tomorrow is the day”. I don’t know why I had shifted into that almost panicked mode.

Packing for a vacation always overwhelms me for some reason. That Tuesday, it seemed even worse. I was so anxious, and even emotional. I cried through most of it. What was going on? I had no idea why I was feeling the way I was. In our session on Monday my therapist told me that she’ll let her other clients get away with “I don’t know”, but not me. Apparently I’m insightful. But sometimes I really don’t know. And this was one of those times. Maybe it will come to me at some point. That happens quite often, so maybe I can’t get away with “I don’t know” after all.

I hate airports. I despise them. Even more than I do crowded shopping malls (I try to go during the week when most people are at work). Those are places where I’m most likely to get panic attacks (lasting either from a few minutes to over 20 minutes sometimes). So, in preparation, I took one of my magic anxiety killing pills, and after that, I felt so much better. I had used some mindfulness and breathing exercises before taking it though, hoping that it would be enough. But it wasn’t. I lasted 20 minutes with that. But at least I tried. I got through the whole airport and flying thing pretty smoothly. I used to love flying. But when I got into a relationship with my ex, I started becoming as anxious and paranoid as she was every time we had to step foot on a plane. But this time, and alone, my old love of flying was back! My favourite part is the take off and landing. It’s a bit of an adrenaline rush.

On my way from the airport to my mom’s place, I had to go pick up my youngest half-sister, who lives quite a while away from my mom. She was going to be spending a few days with us. I also popped in to see my eldest younger half-sister, who was at work, so I couldn’t spend much time with her. To me they’re just my sisters (there’s no half in there for me). By the time I got to my mom’s place, I was exhausted. As I walked through the door, my mom was busy with something. She looked up and saw me, and her eyes just lit up. She also seemed to do a double take, not sure whether I was real. I hugged her tighter than I ever had before. She looked so happy!

Throughout my stay there, I slept on a small blow up mattress, and my youngest sister slept on the couch. Sleeping in the same room with any one of my sisters is a crazy experience. My mom’s place only has one bedroom, so we slept in the lounge. I didn’t get much sleep while I was there. I struggle to sleep in a new environment, and add to that a young sister who doesn’t get the value of sleep. I’m a very light sleeper. After having her try to keep me awake as long as possible, I would finally go to sleep. But she’s so noisy, and every time she moved, the couch creaked way too loud, in my opinion. The curtains also couldn’t close, so it was too bright in there with all the street lights. Not a very good environment for inducing sleep. But I survived. Like I mentioned in a previous blog post, I like waking up to peace and quiet in the mornings, while I drink my coffee. There was no chance of that happening here. Imagine being semi-asleep and having your mom and sister yelling at one another before you can even get your eyes open. Those two can’t be together for more than a day, or they’re at each other’s throats. They know exactly how to push one another’s buttons. Now here I was, stuck with this for four days. Burying my head under the pillow never sounded (and felt) so good.

A lot happened during the time with my mom. The unfortunate thing is that I barely got one moment alone with her. Both my mom and sister vying for my attention. I didn’t know which way to go. Which way is up? It was exhausting. My mom’s 23-year-old boyfriend (I called him daddy, that had him laughing for a while), was there in the evenings and the weekend, so we were never entirely alone. The only uninterrupted time my mom and I had was an hour before I went to bed on my last night there. I had taken my youngest sister home by that time. I adore my sisters, but the youngest one is a handful! We had our own “salon day” at my mom’s place though. She coloured and styled my hair, and we even played around with make-up. That was a nice bonding experience.

It was a busy week. Driving back and forth to go see my eldest younger sister, and a bunch of other outings that made me so sick of driving. But I don’t see my family every day, and it was nice to be able to do those things for, and with, them, so it was worth it. I struggled a lot that week with disconnection though. I “felt” numb quite often.

On the Saturday evening, we went out for dinner with my aunt (my mother’s sister) and uncle. He’s Greek, she’s Portuguese. They’re constantly fighting, and it’s fascinating (and extremely funny) listening to them, as they switch between English and each of their languages! It makes my head spin just thinking about it. It’s always fun spending time with them though. Oh, and they took me to a bookstore, and bought me two new books! I’m obsessed with books. I got “Into the Heart of Mindfulness” and “The Mindful Path to Self-Compassion”. The first one was recommended to me by my former OT, so when I saw it I just knew I had to get it.

My mom was emotional and cried a lot during my stay. Sometimes over small things (sound familiar?). As far as I can remember, I’ve only seen her cry twice in my life. And now suddenly it’s almost a daily thing. Apparently it’s been like this for months already, so I’m worried about her. I wanted to hug or hold her during those times, but it’s like there’s an invisible wall between us, and I can’t get myself to do that. The most I could do was put my hand on her shoulder or back for a few seconds, and even that felt awkward. I can’t remember her ever holding me either. Of course hugging her hello and goodbye is easy. But other than those times, that’s not the case. It’s still a great source of sadness for me. I don’t know why it’s so hard with her, when I find it so easy to be that shoulder when someone else needs it, including my sisters.

I still have more to write about this trip, but I’ll rather split it up into two parts. I don’t want to write anymore tonight. Writing has been hard for me lately. Wanting to write, but not able to start. An internal battle of sorts. But now it seems like I’ve broken through that wall.

Mornings & Evenings

I don’t like going to bed at night. Come 7:00pm, I start getting frustrated that the day is almost over. I’ll stay up as late as I possibly can, until I just can’t keep my eyes open anymore. Which is usually 10:30-11:30pm.

I don’t like waking up in the morning. I always wake up exhausted, and want to stay in bed. It’s been that way my whole life. Waking up, yet feeling as though I didn’t sleep at all. I can only remember a couple of mornings where I actually woke up feeling refreshed and well rested. Once in my early 20’s, the other about two years ago. Just as thinking that it’s almost time to go to bed at night fills me with dread, so does waking up in the morning.

I don’t like sleeping during the day. But I also don’t like being awake during the day.

I know I should be grateful to be alive. But I just feel… Depressed. Empty.

I had a good session with my therapist yesterday, and everything is back on track with us. But instead of the usual euphoria I feel after a session that makes me feel connected to her again, this time I just felt… nothing.

Went to visit Jasmine today, but it felt a little awkward. I’ve been trying to figure out what’s going on with me. Why I’m feeling the way I am. My therapist says there’s always a reason behind our depression. That’s it’s not just there, existing by itself. But I haven’t been able to figure out what that reason for this low phase is. It’s been a couple of weeks now.

I want to go to bed, I want to sleep right now (it’s 09:02pm). But I feel this sense of dread. I just can’t figure myself out.

Is It True?

I have been in a relatively good mood today. Nothing special happened, I was just at peace.

But right now I’m not doing so well. Right now I feel as though I was hit by a truck carrying huge stone pillars, and I’m lying in the road, unable to move.

A few hours ago, I randomly (friend of a friend of a friend, I can’t remember) came across one of the guys who had taken something very valuable away from me, and suddenly I had a way to contact him. When I saw his picture, I froze, and it felt as though all the blood had drained from my body. Then I had the sensation of things crawling all over me. But within a few seconds, I just went numb.

I’ve been wanting to write a letter to this particular guy for years now, but never had a way to get into contact. And I also wasn’t sure whether I really wanted to send him one. So tonight, I wrote that letter, while feeling unreal, as though I just didn’t exist. Someone else was writing. The world seemed to move in slow motion.

But I couldn’t send it. I was terrified. And then, suddenly nothing felt real. All my memories of everything that ever happened, not just this event, didn’t feel real. I felt, and still feel so confused. What if this never really happened? That nothing that happened in my life, happened? What if my mind had created this elaborate set of memories that I have carried with me all these years, but they weren’t true? That all the ‘memories’ that I felt, and feel, emotionally and physically aren’t really there? I don’t know what to believe anymore. I feel lost, and like I don’t even know where I am right now.

I don’t want to bring it up in therapy, because I’ve spent a few sessions already on what this guy did to me and how it’s affected, and still is, affecting me. I don’t want to rehash it all the damn time. A part of me also feels ashamed to keep bringing it up. Like I don’t have the right to.

I haven’t had any episodes of suicidal ideation for more than a month now (which was a welcome change), but right now, tonight, it’s back. I’m hoping that by writing this, I’ll get out of this mindset.

I’m doubting myself. And right now it hurts. It all hurts so damn much.

Stranger In This World

This is something I wrote on the 15th March 2016, and stumbled upon today. It applies just as much now as it did back then.

Where do I belong?

Why do I have this constant yearning to be anywhere but here?

People call places home. I haven’t yet found my own. Does that place even exist? Or is there a deep internal resistance to anywhere I find myself? A subconscious element I don’t have access to?

Staring out the window. The moonlight casts slivers of light through the dark trees beyond. It looks different today. Is home perhaps somewhere out there?

And sometimes I wonder…
Do I even exist in this world?

59a931024dd9c3a053a009be40f342a6

It’s So Dark

For the past week, I’ve been depressed most of the time. I can’t seem to shake it. I don’t even know where I am sometimes. I’m in a constant state of exhaustion. Feeling disconnected from everyone. I just want to be alone. It’s like someone else is living in my head, my body. Empty one minute, then in tears the next.

I’m thinking that maybe I should switch my medication, or increase the dosage. Because I can’t carry on this way.

I’m going to go watch a movie with Jasmine tonight. One that I’ve been so excited to see, and have been waiting months for. But now I feel nothing. I don’t even want to go tonight. But I’ll have to force myself.

I feel hopeless. I can’t see a future.