The Work Ahead

Okay, I’m reading Bradshaw and I’m getting into it and he starts talking about having to *have* to do the work in order to make it work.  I’m scared.  Not because I’m innately lazy, but because I’m afraid of what the work might dig up.  On paper, yea, I’m all for doing the work, making myself better, but on paper means I don’t have any real skin in the game.  On paper I’m an author, but in reality, I’m just a writer.  The reading of just the work to come makes me want to crawl into bed and hide from it all, but I don’t want to, I want to make my life better.

I’m going to talk to Connie about it tomorrow, to assure myself that the work ahead of me isn’t going to be as time-consuming, arduous and painful as I’m fearing it will be.  It probably will be, but I think I just need someone to lie to me so I can get started.

What I guess I’m really afraid of is crying.  I joke and say that crying is for sissies, but the ruth of the matter is I’m afraid if I start crying I won’t be able to stop.  Or I’ll have to explain to my mother why I’m not ‘happy’.  It advocates I shouldn’t be on medication so I’m not numb, but at the same time, I’m afraid of the anger, rage coming back before I get my grief work done.  Or worse, I do something to me before I get the work done.

I’ve come to realize, though I’ve fought it for so long, that I was  sexually molest as a child.  Not physically but emotionally, which, according to Bradshaw, is just as bad if not worse.  It explains the shame, it explains the fear of intamacy….and so on.  I think this is going to have to be a journal entry, I don’t necessarily trust this avenue.  Again, trust issues are a sign as well.  If I feel it’s safe to reveal the journal entry I’ll upload it…okay, type it up.

Just putting this down, expelling it from circling the drain in my brain has relaxed me and I’ve jettison the stress, and now I’m just a bit neurotic.

Testing Emotions

Let me just put this out there first: I am not a fan of tests.  Any tests.  All tests.  Even the funny ones that mean nothing.  I’m afraid they are going to reveal too much, like in school, that I’m stupid, or in the magazine, too scary.  Yep, that’s me, stoopid skary.  I’ve been learning about myself that I’m not stupid.  I passed my phlebotomy class and my licensing exam with minimal studying.  I still want to read the book to be sure that I have it down.  I just didn’t have the time or the bandwidth to do what needed to be done.  I could barely make it to school on time most days.

Then there are the tests you have to take to see where you are with a certain problem.  There aren’t any right or wrong answers so I try not to read the description of what the totals of different answers mean before I take the test to keep from trying to fit into a ‘norm’.  But, seriously, I can’t believe that I keep fitting outside the “you seriously need help” category as well.  For example, in the When Anger Hurts book I scored in the raging lunatic section, it was suggested I’d make a good match with Bruce Banner.  (If you don’t know that reference, shame, shame on you).

The latest test I took was for Bradshaw’s Homecoming.  Ten was the only number given, there weren’t any levels for “you’re doing well” or “Your F***ing Nuts!  Get your hug-me jacket and lock yourself in your room and we’ll pick you up momentarily”  It just said if you scored 10 or more you really need this book.  There were about 100 questions and I scored 31.5.  Yea, I know you’re wondering how I got a .5.  Some of the questions were items in my personality I already knew were  flawed and I had already started on working on them or, only half of it applied to me.  Stuff like anal and oral fixations I was a straight No but for the S&M question was a half because it looks like fun…well the roll-playing and bondage aspect of it looks fun, not the beating and humiliation part of it.  I’m not obsessed with it.  I guess that would be a no then, but it’s still an aspect of the demon so I figured it should be counted some how.

What frightened me were the sections I read after the test about emotional sexual abuse.   I have a lot of the signs Bradshaw is talking about.  I don’t know when or where it happened, and I really don’t want to know.  I’m hoping there is a way to fix it, or pave over it without having to have to have to exhume the bodies for proper disposal.  I don’t want to drill down that far into my psyche for fear of what else the action will dig up and need examination….or worse, it completely destabilizes the foundation and I just cave in, never being about to see the light of day again.

 

Off the Map

I’m still trying to bulldoze my way through the prologue of Homecoming by Bradshaw and it said something that pulled an interesting image up in my mind.

Erickson believed that every person has his own unique map of the world.

When I worked at the now defunct Sun Microsystems we had a trick-or-treat Halloween thing that was mandatory and my room were pirates.  I made a treasure map and put it on my cube wall.  I drew a free-form island and put in trees, huts, a volcano and so on and then a big X marking the spot.  I drew a compass in the middle of the ocean and off into the edge I drew dragons with the warning “Yonder there be dragons,”  I have a feeling that reclaiming and championing my inner child is going to be more like fighting dragons than I would like, but if fighting dragons means broadening my unique map of the world I think pushing my boundaries will be a good thing.  As long as it’s not the Norwegian horn tail.

A Well Medicated Machine

I chatted with Dr. W the other day and he would like me to come in every day….he feels I’m a breath of fresh air.  So, I’m doing well.  Backing down the Lexapro from 50 back to 40 has relieved the tension in my jaw, something that I’m able to counter with carrot sticks and the Buspar is still keeping me from climbing out of my skin and keeping me from losing it when things get bad.  So, I know IT’S NOT ME.

Mom on the other hand has decided to go off all psyche meds and feels the pacemaker will keep her sane.  It might bloody well keep her sane, but it’s really messing with my wellbeing.  I don’t want to be around her because I’m tired of feeling like I’m being used by her.  If she’s trying to manipulate me into getting a job she’s winning.  If she thinks I’m going to pay for a house keeper out of my money, she’s so not going to win that one.

I am feeling a little manipulated because she did a major one last night.  I’ve been sick.  She played sick all day too because I was.  It’s either to make me feel bad and take care of her because she’s sicker than I am or she wanted to guilt me into doing the dishes with bleach because she wanted me to feel like I had poisoned her with the filth in the kitchen or that I don’t clean the dishes well enough to keep her well.  So, I did the dishes, she still mewed about how sick she felt, how she didn’t think she could make it to Patrick’s dinner party and wanted me to go instead of her, I refused.  I already told him I was sick and I couldn’t make it.  She tried guilting me into going, tried bribing me into going, then Patrick called and said he couldn’t pick her up so I had to bring her.  Finally she pulled the “what if I throw up and want to leave early” card and I gave in.  She thought I didn’t want to go because I didn’t have the money to cover my bill.  It turns out I do have the money, I just didn’t want to be trapped in the car with her and I wanted the house all to myself for an hour or two……

I’m stopping this now before I get all wrapped up in some sort of straight jacket of righteous indignation.  I was manipulated which means I allowed it.  She was doing what she does, it’s my fault.  I should be pissed at myself instead of at her. It’s just easier to blame her than to blame my screwed up internal wiring.  If it’s her fault I don’t have to change.  I need to change because I don’t want to be here any more.  I don’t want to be treated like a servant and I don’t want to snap at her like she’s a burden.  Currently, without her meds, she is a burden to me.  I can’t to anything for myself without having to have to include her, or bring her along, or feed her the same things…etc.  She wants to saddle her identity to mine and be what I am, but I won’t allow her to share in the identity I’ve had to struggle to form.  Yes, she was never allowed that as a child, but honestly, neither was I.  I’m trying to make this time a time where she can do that, find herself,  for herself.  I’m not willing to share mine.

I need to get back to reading on a daily basis, and writing on a daily basis too.  I keep talking about spending the time doing 300 lines a day, but I’ve only done it once or twice.  Mom needs me, yes, but she can’t have me all the time, I can’t handle it without her medication and I’m not going to put myself in harms way because she is messing with the mechanisms in our relationship.

A Palpable Silence

I’ve been in such a funk these past few days.  I started reading The Homecoming by Bradshaw, I had some spare time in the early afternoon because I was between doctors appointments so I thought I would crack the book and see what is in store for me.  I got a few pages into the introduction and I had to stop.  Not just because they called my name but because I don’t think I could handle any more of hearing the letters these people were writing to their parents without pulling up the dregs of my own wounded child.  In some regards I wasn’t as horribly treated as some, but some hit so close to home and stirred up other emotions and memories that I keep forgetting I’ve buried.

I’ve gone silent.  Which in a way is good, I got some wholesale editing done today on my pinks but I’m not very talkative to Mom and she’s irritating me.  She won’t shut up and let me just have the silence.  She actually realized that I was trying to pseudo-nap today, what I call floating, that she needed to stop talking and trying to engage me into some form of conversation.  I need to get back to the basics with my anger management and I think I’m going to put Bradshaw on a shelf and re-read When Anger Hurts and actually do the journal this time.  I think I can handle adding the extra work onto my list of things to do.

What is annoying me is that this has been hanging on for two days now.  Normally I shake it off and go on like nothing happened.  I’m worried that I’m pushing back reading the book because I don’t want to dredge up the skeletons in my past and see them again, rotted flesh and vacant eyes, staring at me, accusing me for not protecting them when I was a child.  I couldn’t, I was a child, but tell that to them.

My mind has been focusing on scenarios that are never going to happen again, and I can’t seem to derail them.  It’s just the spinning and spinning and the whole “What would you do if-” BS that I don’t even need to waste my time on.  It’s family stuff, it’s annoying and it’s really never going to happen….at least not to me.

In the mean time, Mom keeps asking me why I’m so quiet and I have nothing to tell her.  She hasn’t done anything lately, all she did was leave a trail of dead bodies behind in my psyche that I need to give a proper burial to.  I don’t think there is going to be an easy route through this part of my education….Damnit!

Step By Step, Inch By Inch

I’m putting my goals up for this week so I will be accountable.  They might seem like small steps to the rest of the world, but I need the baby steps for now.

Intellectual – Reading Homecoming by Bradshaw

Work – Edit 300 lines a day and print up pink copies as I complete a chapter

Social – Do my visiting teaching

Physical – Work out on treadmills and elliptical 4x this week

Emotional – Write 3x in BFTV and 1 in PS, 1-2 journal entries

Diet – Eat more fruit

I’ll check in from time to time to update how this is going.  Wish me success.

The Seed Of Anger

I finished reading Anger by my Monk.  He said something that was a bit disheartening.  He said Anger never goes away, its always with you.  He used the image of a house having a livingroom and a basement.  When one is confronted with something that pisses us off it’s the same as watering the seed of anger in the basement and it grows into the livingroom.  When you allow someone to water your seed it just gets bigger, and bigger until your howl livingroom is consumed with the soul eating plant.  (The flower from Little Shop of Horrors comes to mind).  He instructs that we smile at it, breathe deeply in and then again out until you feel the anger return to a seed.  Through practice, meaning mindful walking and mindful breathing so the time spent with the anger in the livingroom is as short as possible.

The thing that gets me is the whole smiling at it.  What if I do that during the irksome têt et têt and I give my anger a smile, it would serve to piss off some people more.  I’m sort of looking forward to the opportunity to try it out though.

I realize I have a lot of work to do in regards to my Wounded Child.  I’ve purchased Homecoming by Bradshaw which is what Connie said I should read to work with my wounded child and then I got a new book from my Monk about how to be mindful in everyday life.  Kind of like the book I read about Holiness in Every Day Life.  Between those two I should be on my way to heal the wounded child and to practice Mindfulness in everyday life so the seeds of anger will never get past the stairs from the basement to the livingroom.  My livingroom is crowded enough with my characters and plots, I don’t need the anger to crowd them out again.