Came across an old journal. It covered from late 2002 up until it abruptly ends in June 2003. Weird, trying to remember that year. Maybe I was hospitalized, and that is why that journal ended like that. What was so remarkable was having a detailed look inside my head, and the events of those 7 months. Not only was life chaotic and stressful, my mood was all over the place. I think that was before being diagnosed bipolar. I was having very rapid mood shifts, day to day and sometimes hour by hour. My weight was the lowest it has ever been in my life. It all paints the picture of a nasty sort of mixed episode, with extreme anxiety, irritability and anger.
Very clear in the journal is my struggle with Virgil. We were not having a very good time of it back then. I was at times completely disconnected, other times angry and judgmental. I do actually vaguely remember a session in which we talked about what was “good enough”. Did I think she was good enough? What was good enough? It was a rough session. I was clearly challenging her, not in a good way. Without the connection, our work suffered.
In my mind, I remember little of this. As I went back through the entries I could recall some of the events, but not many. It is as if that period of my life just disappeared. I wish I had kept journals, but I rarely if ever wrote. Those 7 months were an anomaly. Yet, it gave me such a clear glimpse. I still struggle with many of the same issues. The family, the expectations, the farm and the stress. From that journal I could tell I was pulling away, my love for the horses and the riding was quickly being extinguished in an atmosphere of extreme stress. I wasn’t eating, or sleeping. If I was sleeping it was during the day, not at night. I was exhausted, and afraid of how out of control everything felt. We went thru multiple drugs, trying to stabilize it, but things were a mess.
I find myself a bit shaky, after reading such an intimate detailed description of that hell I was in. It was so clear how alone I felt, how detached from everyone including Virgil. I even saw a different therapist. In that one session it became crystal clear my bond with Virgil. I was not ready, nor willing to attempt to see anyone else. It seemed to refocus the work, and actually helped. There were a couple hellish sessions during that period that tried the relationship in my eyes. I was really considering moving on, but when given the opportunity, I realized it wasn’t what I wanted. At the time I wasn’t sure if it was because I was comfortable with Virgil, and was afraid to move outside that comfort zone, or if it was because I was completely attached. It was probably a combination of many things. I am glad I stuck it out, and found a way to make it work. There will always be good sessions, great sessions, bad sessions and awful sessions. It is part of the process. I think much of what was going on back then was a chemical shit storm going on in my brain. I’m not sure how much therapy can happen when there is no stability. I was barely getting by, let alone making changes and setting goals. I was trying, just couldn’t get my feet under me. I know Virgil was trying, it was clear in the entries. We just weren’t clicking, and spent time butting heads.
God I hope I don’t ever get back in that weird mixed place, of being anxious, irritable, racy and angry. I get anxious just thinking about it. I already think of these past ten years as being an epic experience, this journal just drove that home.