(unedited. sleep deprived ramblings)
Well seems sleep is still quite elusive. The minutes tick off and I think about all I need to get done tomorrow. My brain just won’t settle. It scans rapidly through the problems stacked in my head. All the work undone. The looming unanswered questions. but most of all feeling the aftermath of session with Virgil. I don’t know how to fix it. I’m not even sure if it is fixable. Is this where we are supposed to part ways? Have I done something wrong to taint what we once had? I just don’t know. I’m restless and anxious in the wake. I struggle within the strong rip tide currents of my desire to be free and not be controlled yet fall beneath the surface to the guilt of failing and letting her down. Neither seems healthy. Not does either feel remotely safe or comfortable. I just want to stop hurting. I want to stop screwing up and letting everyone down. I want to live my life on my own terms. I cannot be scared into making choices. I cannot be forced. That is no life worth living. That is slavery. I don’t want to suffer. Whether it is under the staggering weight of depression or this a life spinning out of my control. Nothing is comfortable. I spent my day wandering. I could not focus nor could I commit to anything. Nothing got done. It was pointless. I was lost in my head without knowing which way to go or how to make it any better. I tried polo, but it left me feeling even more empty and lost. How is it that everything seems to be coming apart at the seams? What happened to the life I had cobbled together? What the FUCK is happening to me?
Virgil says I am angry with her. But I don’t understand it. and I don’t know what was the destabilizing domino that started this. I don’t think the depakote is allowing me to process anything. It is allowing me to be manipulated. My mind easier to pick apart. My guard is gone and I cannot protect myself. I’m left with all these scattered pieces and no reference to where they are supposed to go. I’m lost and scared. What if the person trying to save me is ultimately breaking me? I can’t see clearly now. I am broken. what if this has changed me for good? What if I can never go back to who I was before? I needed those defenses. they were mine. Am I lost for good?
As the day dragged on and I found nothing to ease my mind I pulled out the sneakers and headed for the door. Most of these past weeks my sneakers only serve to increase my panic and anxiety. They have come to represent the losing battle. The reality that I can’t run enough miles to offset what I am gaining. Today I was out of options. I didn’t know what else to do and the habit so carefully built over these past years just took over. I didn’t want to run my same boring routes so I set out for 7,000 acres of park I had never set foot in despite it being less than 5 minutes from the farm. The sun was slanting low and the heat was finally abating as I set off into the woods. There would have been a time in my life where being utterly alone would have frightened me. Today I welcomed it. I didn’t want to see anyone, or think about anything beyond navigating my journey though this strange landscape. and so I ran. and ran. Amidst the pungent honey suckle blooms and the shrills of the veerys up in the canopy. It was mesmerizing in its peacefulness. I would have run on into the darkness. I wanted nothing more than to just be free. To leave behind the drugs and the sorrow. The fear and the frustration. To stop talking and stop listening. To leave it all. To stand apart and alone. Myself with my choices. But there is no reality like that. Instead I return as always, cowed by others and beaten down by life and the responsibilities. It just goes around and around. I can’t get off, even if I wanted to and that is what hurts the most. I know now I don’t have a choice. I am broken. Life will go on but my heart isn’t in it. I am left with nothing but sadness and resignation. No it isn’t the darkness of depression it is the bleakness of nothingness. When control and mastery abruptly vanish the chasm is so vast and mind numbing. I don’t want to do anything but curl up and cry. I don’t want to look at the world going on around me, or the horses peacefully grazing outside. I want to pull the drapes and hides within the darkness. It is easier when I can’t see it. or feel it. The only peace I have now is in sleep. I long for the day to end so I can return once again to my bed. Only to find sleep absent as I dread waking up tomorrow and feeling so very empty and impotent. This is no life.
(unedited. unread) I learned as a little one watching whales off the coast of Northern New England that icebergs are deceptive. They might seem so insignificant bobbing on the surface. Tiny it seemed but what lay beneath the dark ocean waters was what boat captains worried about. These floating blocks of ice could be stories deep. Large enough to sink even the largest and strongest of vessels. Think we all understand thanks to the Titanic. I know you’re probably wondering what could icebergs and therapy possibly have in common. I am just using the metaphor. We are all circling and staring at one small seemingly insignificant piece, the 10 lbs. Easy to shrug off to say it is a gross overreaction on my part. Ridiculous even given what I might be giving up on. It isn’t 10 lbs. It isn’t Depakote. The degree to which I am experiencing pain, sadness and discouragement point to a far greater iceberg. This is a behemoth one might say. Scariest thing is I don’t even know why all of this is getting triggered. I though I had made so much progress. I have been able to find insights and look hard when puzzles arise. I tend to be able to work it through if I let myself. This is different. There is a sorrow and pain that I have not come across in so long. Is it grief? If so, for what? My life? control? What? I don’t understand.
I left session as confused as I entered. yes, there was much that made sense. But what is it that is making me this upset? I know session yesterday did trigger off a lot for me and teasing it into various pieces is difficult. More so since I withdrew to protect myself and some is lost. I know that what I heard, through my clearly distorted hearing is not necessarily what Virgil said. I told Beatrice that. I doubt it would match if she and I both gave our accounts of what happened in session. Beatrice asked if I had any expectations going into that session. I did not. I had a goal which was to stop the depakote. but I had no clear picture of Virgil’s end going in. I actually assumed she would disagree and not let me stop it. I had that much correct. What I didn’t account for was the break neck speed at which the session came undone. It felt odd and confrontational. Though I did not want that. I wanted out of that office. The emotions I was experiencing were so excruciating and I just felt like I had nothing to offer. I had no answers. I spoke my truth. What I received as a cold hard dose of doesn’t matter. there isn’t any other option so get over it. Figure it out in therapy. It is depressed or this. jesus. talk about a terrible feeling. add in the when you get depressed and awful I can 2 PC you and I am still not sure how I managed to find the truck. This wasn’t a reality check. This was a 2×4 over the head—-> YOU’RE SICK—->TAKE THE MEDS—->DOESN’T MATTER WHAT THEY DO TO YOU—>YOU’RE FUCKED EITHER WAY—->THIS IS YOUR REALITY—>YES THERE IS FREE WILL AND CHOICE—> I STILL HAVE VETO POWER ULTIMATELY AND I CAN AND WILL HOSPITALIZE YOU WHEN YOU GO OFF YOUR MEDS BC WITHOUT THEM YOU”LL BE BACK IN THE HOSPITAL IN A MONTH AND IT WASN’T ALL THE NICE LAST TIME.
Beatrice said it was out of concern. Perhaps even fear. She is worried about me and the consequences of that decision. Yes, I know that but I’m not sure my heart does. I’m not even sure my mind does. I have spent the past 20 years trying to gain some control and mastery of my life. Ultimately it may have just been a mirage. I wasn’t supposed to say I’m sick. or that there were no options for me. She was always the first to correct me. You’re not sick. We will figure it out. Have faith. Seems we have run out.
The depth of this iceberg is stories deep. and here I am again face to face with being hurt by the last person in the world I thought would do it. I don’t understand this cycle we are in. I don’t. What I know is that I am decimated by pain and I fight to steer the course. I can give up and just do what I’m told. I guess that is all I can do. but I do not know how to find acceptance when I am drowning in loathing and hate. All I ever wanted was to feel better. To have a life worth living. It wasn’t lofty. I didn’t want a Harvard MBA. I wanted to make it past 21. As each year passed and I slipped past each silent milestone I carved out in my mind I thought it might just be okay one day. I don’t have to be harmed to be well. How wrong was I. I have no power. I never did.
(unedited. unread. not even thought through. just putting words on the page because I don’t know what else to do with them)
I didn’t go well. I tried hard to say why I could not keep going with the depakote. I wanted so badly to get her to understand how devastating the combat with this drug is and how my day to day life has changed so utterly. I ate when I was hungry. I ran. I lived life. I didn’t think about ounces and calories. I didn’t fight the never ceasing urge to eat. I had the evening issues with seroquel, but I understood them well. This is very different. I eat, and eat and eat. It never feels enough. I fought hard to gain some mastery of it. Though in reality it was still the same. The hunger never changed. When I step on the scale this morning and it registered 130 I panicked. A cold sweat washed over me. I felt so crushed. I knew it was coming because I knew I had ate too much all week. I consumed and consumed. It is the most I have weighed since I took Saphris (so we are going back a good number of years). I had enough. Each day had become about hate and self loathing. Place that on top of stress from the farm and the other tough issues on my plate and I feel like I am drowning. When I ran to keep some semblance of sanity it was because I chose to not because I needed to. Now I HAVE to. There is no option anymore. A love will soon become like all the other loves lost to this place and my life. And they fall quickly to hate. I tried to get this across. It didn’t work. and so I got the talk about this was what had to happen. if not I’d just get depressed. and if depressed enough she’d have to 2 PC me. The recoil in my brain happened so fast. There wasn’t a choice, not is I wanted to make any effort at being stable. I felt like I failed. I had tried but it wasn’t good enough. To walk away from the depakote wasn’t a viable option. My world shrunk in my head. I cried. I cried for all the unfairness of this life, the shitty luck of it all. But most of all in resignation that I would continue to live like this hating myself. waking up every morning disgusted. going to sleep horrified at all I had consumed. It heart wrenching. It became about accepting this weight and doing more therapy to address another issue. Life is hurling along and I am hanging by my finger tips trying to get thru each week with Beatrice and now we need to get this sorted. To put the rest on hold? I was frustrated and overwhelmed. The work I do now seems impossible most weeks, now there is more. I know it needs to be dealt with. I know. God why does this have to hurt so much?
Why did it start out with my voicing my choice and end up with me feeling crushed beyond recognition? I don’t know what happened today, and I don’t begin to know where to start putting my head back together. I cried through session, and I cried most of the way home. For me, unless someone dies (and even then all bets are off) that is unheard of. How did I get so small and give up so easily? I guess ultimately I know it doesn’t matter. It is either miserable every day or cycling into depression. Which is worse? This. By a ways.
to be continued.
Posted by a friend on FB.
“The reality is that you will grieve forever. You will not ‘get over’ the loss of a loved one; you will learn to live with it. You will heal and you will rebuild yourself around the loss you have suffered. You will be whole again but you will never be the same. Nor should you be the same nor would you want to.”
― Elisabeth Kübler-Ross
“It is in our idleness, in our dreams, that the submerged truth sometimes comes to the top.” Virginia Woolf.
I arrived home wrung out. like I’d been rode hard one too many times and put away wet as we say in the horse business (hopefully you don’t have a dirty mind, or I’m sure you’re thinking other scenarios). As I have learned on my journey there are moments of clarity in therapy. They are so powerful, they do indeed have a physical and emotional impact. When they happen you know immediately. Not necessarily because of the emotions, since a lot of emotions are present in routine sessions but because there is an almost imperceptible shift on a core level. A loss of balance followed quickly by a check to find one’s bearings. Much like a gymnast on the balance beam when a routine movement ends up off course. the outward thrown arm there to check the balance and enable the routine to continue otherwise she falls to the floor. In the aftermath I usually have a deep bone tired feeling. who know’s, maybe it is from all the time spent holding on so hard. In the split second I answered Virgil I felt the shift. The room rocked. I looked for something to moor on. Anything. The reality, the truth lay clear as day in my deflection. I had not answered her, not really. But it was enough. We both knew what it was that I was saying.
I walked from session looking for ways to ground myself. There was a great yawning abyss waiting. It was leaning hard on my chest begging me to fall in. Pushing at me and I was so very tired in that moment. I could have walked away. I thought of that poor soul last week that paused mid-span on the bridge. I thought about how difficult this journey is about to become. About whether I even wanted to answer the questions once and for all and make decisions based on what I need and WANT, not what anyone else does. I told her I felt like I was hurtling toward something. Some thing. I just didn’t know what yet. It shadows me and I have the sense there are no brakes on this path.
I don’t know where this need to martyr myself comes from. Its power so strong and all-encompassing. For a selfish person that grew up far too spoiled it seems odd. The opposite of what should be. In the end I chose to sit in the truck and write. I dug around and found something and let my mind wander. I wrote. From my heart. The abyss drew away though I could not shrug the exhaustion despite my unburdening myself on those pages. The drive home felt more like a journey than the usual trip. I wanted nothing more than to lay down and rest my mind for a bit. To close my eyes and lose the proximity to all the unpleasantness. I will need a far tougher skin for this work though I realize it is huge that I even allowed myself to go where I went today. In therapy without vulnerability and pushing edges you don’t move on or grow. this was out on the edge for me and I know now is just my recovering from that.
I use this phrase a lot. Really. Most frequently in the context of my partner leaving. As we drove along and I listened to her deflect and dodge my questions I thought about what our relationship has become. and all it has been over the years. She is still as much a mystery at times as she was more than 15 years ago. I have learned to live with the unanswered stuff. I have learned where not to go and what is firmly off limits to me. That is okay. Has been for a long time. But as years pass and we struggle on doubts creep in. I’m human. Like every other person in a relationship with someone they love and care about deeply I do wonder if she’d bail. And thus the “I’d understand if…”. Not sure when I started selling myself short, or if it has always been this way. I looked across at her during that drive and truly thought to myself maybe she does have someone else. Not necessarily in a sexual relationship, but a confidante or a support outside this farm and us. We all need someone to talk to. So I really was perplexed by the lie. I had walked by when her phone screen lit up. I saw the name. It wasn’t like I was basing this question on a hunch or some vague paranoia. I had asked her point blank who she talked to that morning and I was getting nowhere. It was infuriating, yet I in my current near flat line state just let her go in circles. I pushed a little and backed off. tried again. nada. just a more exaggerated response from her denying anyone had contacted her. I looked out the window to collect my thoughts. I could keep grilling her but clearly it was going nowhere. I changed course a bit. “You understand why I might feel this way right? Affairs were practically a way of life in my family. I am not saying you did or are doing anything. I am just asking a question and it is really simple for you to give me an answer. Just look at your phone and it’ll show this morning’s text history.” Nope, more WTF is wrong with you. I am not doing anything. How could you think that? and I returned again to my default. “I’d understand if you wanted to go, or if you went”. “Please just give me fair warning”. That didn’t help either. and so it got left. Swept carefully back under the rug and life returns to the same unending unchanging reality we are living.
I guess I just don’t know. Would she? doubt it. Really do. Do I think she needs friends, and support. YES. We all do. I just wish she had chosen a better answer and didn’t lie. I don’t understand the decision to lie because for me you only lie if you have something important enough to hide.
and so life goes on, da da dum da da dum.
I know I have been pretty absent here. It isn’t just the blog. I’m unenthusiastic about everything and anything. Today I didn’t even bother running or biking. I remain lost in this strange place, far from where I was. To have been so solidly committed and disciplined for these past years and to end up here. I just don’t understand. It feels like I am throwing away so much effort and hard work. and I just don’t care. What happened to me?