Every year since 2008, this, right here, is the week that I dearly wish would pass by without notice. How lovely it would be to glance at the calendar in early September, and think, “Oh, hey, that typically dreaded horrible anniversary week in late August went right on by without notice. Look at that!”
Alas, but no, that is not the case. All the progress I’ve made to date feels like it’s slipping through my fingers, like thin beach sand that easily flows through our fingers as we let it fall. My body feels as dissociative and floaty as ever, as if I’ve not seen Doc for the last two years. The will to continue is dreadfully hard to yank out of me, and yank is exactly what I have to do in order to put one foot in front of the other, in order to not give in to the incessant thoughts of an end. An end that would be just that, an end with pain for others, and that is, sadly, what keeps me going this very moment -others. I am hardly continuing on for myself. No, right now there is too much regret over the life choices that led to that terrible week in late August of 2008. There is too much awareness of the fact that I threw my life into a deep and wide ditch that week from which I may never fully extract myself. Right now, I continue for others, like my two nephews whom I love, and though I know they think I’m goofy, they do look up to me. And what a terrible life lesson I would be dropping in their lap if I were to leave this earth by my own volition.
I know that if I were to make this choice that I would be presenting it to them as a viable choice, and I don’t want to be that person for them.
In order to try to shake the depressed feeling, I try to focus on the good fortune I have in my life.
The fact is this, there is not a whole hell of a lot that separates me from someone that is called a “consumer” in our statewide mental health system. Similar to someone that has a “serious and persistent mental illness,” or rather (SPMI) as it’s called, in my worst moments of DID and PTSD, things like laundry, grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning become fantasies and dreams. But, because I have been blessed with resources I am able to send my laundry out to the wash-and-fold service, hire a cleaning service, and eat outside the home. Even with these services in play, I can still struggle with getting out of bed, getting into the shower, and getting dressed because I am floaty and dissociative. But at least in those instances I’ve narrowed down the things I must accomplish, which is the best way for me to have some semblance of success when I am in that state.
Even so, I am acutely aware of the fact that I have a job that pays me enough so that I can pay for the services I’ve mentioned above. This salary, and the fact that I have a friend that lets me stay with him when I am too afraid to be by myself, these are the only things that keep me from becoming part of the system of care.
And just when one would think I would sit here and feel blessed about my resources, I sit here and get scared instead. I get scared because I know it’s the job that provides the resources, which means I need to continue to do the job, and do the job well. Lately, when every morning is a fight with myself, I ask, “How much longer can I fight? How much longer can I juggle this?”
Then I loop back to my brain telling me that it’s a fruitless fight, and that’s when I remember why I threw myself at the mercy of my friend today, and asked if I could stay with him for a while. He said “sure” and asked me what was up, and between tears I said, “I get too scared by myself right now, and bad choices are floating in my brain.” He then took my hand, and said, “But you’re making a good choice now.”
At least you have hope.
Thank you. I am certainly trying.
Is that your dog in the picture?
I wish. It’s a public domain image I found in zemanta long ago. I can’t have dogs where I live. Otherwise, I would have one. And in my ongoing state of affairs, I am in no shape to move.
Awe, I’m a cat person, but that image is cute.
I know it’s nowhere near the same but I have days where I don’t want to get out of bed, shower, put on clothes or move.
I think it’s something many of us struggle with to a certain degree. It’s when it becomes chronic that can make it scary because then you start to wonder if it’s a forever thing.
Is your PTSD war related? I always just assume it is but it can happen for many different reasons.
It is not war related. It’s actually related to a number of things: childhood -my fathers alcoholism, my mother’s undiagnosed likely borderline personality disorder and all the ways it scared me … Most recently, in 2008, I was sexually assaulted. So, it’s a soup of many factors.
Anniversaries are so tough. It’s not like you can just “un remember” the date. Believe me I have tried. You have got through it each year since 2008 and you will get through this time too. Keep writing if it helps, we will keep reading. Love and light to you.
I’m sorry I haven’t been around lately. I had major surgery about a month ago, with complications and setbacks, so I had not been online except to take care of only the most urgent e-mail. When I began reading this post, I was alarmed. By the end, I felt better, and I’m extremely grateful to your understanding, compassionate, and generous friend. I’m so glad that he’s in your life.
Oddly, it is a “normal” thing to entertain the kind of thoughts you were having when you suffer with PTSD and DID. Inside, someone was in a lot of pain and wanted the pain to stop. Are you in a place now that you could sit down in a safe place with a notebook and pen and allow that someone to “talk” with you?
Also, I think it’s important for you to explain to your inner peeps that you work at your job to take care of them and yourself. It’s part of your job as “the parent.” It may sound incredibly difficult right now, but you do need to re-parent yourself (and them). This may be a good topic for you and your Doc.
I hope that you are better now. Sending healing energy your way!
I am sorry for my tardiness in replying. How is your recovery from surgery going? I hope you are past the complications, and that things are better for you now. I can’t apologize enough for the radio silence. I do value your connection in spite of my poor job of maintaining it. I, myself, am working on getting better.
Thanks for everything,
Thanks, Beatriz, for the kind words. My recovery is now “over,” officially, but will probably be another 6-9 months before my body has adjusted to its new normal. I start a part-time job today, but I’ll continue to work on my writing. My novel, “Perceval’s Secret,” continues to sell but not as much as I’d hoped.
I know you’re working hard, and I’ve seen progress and you gaining insights. You have the strength to finish this recovery and healing process even if you think you don’t. I’m glad Doc decided against hospitalization, and a big thank you to Dan for helping you and being there for you. Solid friend.
I do miss you when you’re not blogging, and you are in my thoughts. Take care —