Friday, August 30, 2013

Friday Haiku: from the lighter side of the yawning pit of mental health problems

I don't have to bathe
Now that I am so crazy...
Isn't that handy?

Now that they all know
the neighbors are less angry
about the tall weeds

My household skills can
make you feel so much better
about how you clean.

People mail me cards
of Dragonflies and Rainbows
Look how pretty!

Wish they'd send dinner
like after the funeral
I prefer pizza.

Let's talk about PTSD, let's talk about you and me

That title has a tune in my head, just so you know. You can imagine your own to fit it you don't like mine. When I was more myself, and sometimes now, I sing in my head and sometimes aloud, though you wouldn't really be happy to hear it.

No one expects the Spanish Inquisition, and no one expects a train wreck in their personal lives. That dissappointingly inadequate what to expect when you're expecting book doesn't cover special needs in the way lives are ultimately experienced, no one expects a spouse's suicide or chronic and destructive lying, and when those things happen it is rather distressing, to say the least.  Did unexpected life events come when you were unprepared, and did you feel powerless to deal? Then you have trauma.  Do you relive it, get your ass kicked by it over and over in your head and heart and body, and find yourself lost in a loop of crap? Then you may have PTSD.  I didn't feel OK about accepting that diagnosis last year before my life took a turn for the worse in February.  I thought PTSD was for Veterans, police, etc., and people would think it was bullshit if I said I couldn't function because I feared losing my child if she didn't eat, but once I had even more trauma on a whole new level of awful, and stopped medicating myself with oxycodone, now I do really know it was real PTSD before and it got bigger and badder than ever this year. Among the many things I avoid that remind me of the worst things, talking about the worst things rates pretty high up there, but dumping some out seems to be part of getting well, and if it helps any of you, then let's get better together, 'cause staying lost in a mental health mire of nightmarishness is a lousy option for any of us. Self medicating was always a poor choice and is no longer an option for me.

What I didn't know about PTSD before would fill a large academic volume, and getting to know it on a personal level, it is full of assholery and deserves a poke in the eye, just in case you wondered.  I imagine the shrinks know that it is the result of self preservation mechanisms gone awry.  Much like an allergic reaction though, when you feel anaphylaxis you really have to wonder what good histamines are in doses that can kill. I am tired of intrusive thoughts, tired of a racing heart and pounding ears, tired of my arms going numb and tingly when I feel anxious, or even when I talk on the phone about anything of any importance.  I am tired of hostage dreams, I am tired of the fear I feel when I see a car that looks like my husband's (and I know where his is as it is disabled and in my back yard but it still scares me) and I am tired of wondering when I won't be so tired of these and oh so many other things that upset my apple cart hourly.  So now you know why I stay home and watch Downton Abbey on Amazon and don't take calls and texts and emails even from the people who love me and want to help. I don't really like having to explain how sick I am almost as much as I don't like how sick I am.

Sobriety is my most joyful thing, next to my lovely girls.  Sobriety gives me hope over PTSD, oddly, even though the power triumvirate of PTSD, anxiety and depression led to my addiction.  I feel my best doing outreach at my treatment community, and the most like who I used to be, but I know ifI don't kick some PTSD butt then I won't win the war.  So, let's get crackin'.  Let's talk about PTSD and women and mothers and parents and survivors of the unimaginable.

I will be staying home for a while, not working, as I find that my energy level tanks much earlier than before, and no one will think I am sober if they see how much my hands shake.  Frankly, if people knew how busy my mind is recalling memories, avoiding memories, and keeping myself from screaming then they wouldn't think I could pay attention to much else anyhow.  So I will be back and talk about this more, here, where it is safe.  Thank you.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

My guts, not spilled entirely but sort of a belch.

Did I mention that I was widowed this year?  I think I did, but I put the how and why on the shelf for a bit. It is a nearly new day and I feel pretty positive about going forward today, once I get on the back side of the worst of the PTSD, so I will spill my guts some now.

In February, I was made aware that my husband did something unspeakable.  I reported it, and he killed himself rather than face the consequences. In the span of 48 hours I went from wife and mother to widow and mother and honestly, I never saw it coming. I knew something was very wrong in my marriage and life for the last few years, and I self medicated myself into a pain pill addiction that nearly cost me the rest of everything, but I really didn't know Lord Honey, at all.  And now I never will. Sobriety will be worth fighting for, but it won't fix my head, I have to work on keeping myself sane.

If I try to list the worst things about this experience, the list is horribly long, so I really can't do it, even in therapy, because a fifty minute hour is ultimately just fifty minutes, after all. So over time I will discuss the worst things about it here, and do some needed purging so I can keep moving forward.

Today though, I will mention the best things about the worst thing I have ever experienced.  First, I now really believe in the Divine, not because I want to see a way of life that puts Lord Honey in hell, but I want him to be forgiven and not in hell.  I have not forgiven him for the horrible things he did yet, but I want to, and the help of my higher power will get me there but right now I still seem sort of stuck on more earthly experiences, like the train wreck in my life, and the carnage the two of us wrought by self destructive behavior. Second, going to the edge makes you appreciate the guard rail. I am glad that I never wanted to jump ship myself, although excessive use of pain pills can get you there-that was never my goal.  Now I don't have to numb myself (certainly I see the fun in it, but the danger too) and the pull to get back off the edge is strong-I want to be happy again, and I can almost see the path.  The path is littered with obstacles like the thousand and one things a husband leaves in your life, some good, some bad, some ridiculous in the power of their impact, but the path seems possible now, if I help people and be gentle with us all.  And seek joy.

Friday, August 23, 2013

I now have half as many drafts as published posts. Anyone else hitting the confessional with me?

Self censorship is an obvious choice when you are spilling your guts on the interwebs, but I think I have passed all points of reason in this, now that I have 300-ish published posts and nearly 150 drafts.What gives, people? If you know me in life as well as in 'net, you might think I often can't shut up, and yet, I became a secret keeper in the last three years.  Very soon, I will publish a post that tells you a a bit about why, and just what those secrets were, but for now... how kind of any of you to read this blog at all when I am so silent. I always find my stats quite entertaining when I see I had 500 hits in a month and I managed to post only once in that time.  And are all of you getting emails from business opportunities to grow your blog with giveaways or let someone write for you? At least my blog's email doesn't get spam for Viagra giveaways and feminine lubricant advertising.

Randomosity . . . why does Disney Junior Sprout have ads for things such as I just mentioned? Am I part of the problem for mentioning them on my blog?  How have you explained to your kids what those ads are for?  I thought I would be all "there are no bad questions, little one, let me explain" when it came to Birds, Bees, and Ribbed you-know-whatsies but it turns out I am a 'fraidy cat and run for cover when unmentionables are mentioned in front of my kids, as soon as they say "What..." and I say . . ."um, SQUIRREL!" and then I chase said furry creature until they follow me.

Back to my absenteeism and censorship, I need to knock that off. Blogging here was once a very real part of my sanity.  Having recently lost the vestiges of my sanity, I need every tool in my toolkit to keep hold of the shreds of said tenuous grasp on mental health.

Sometimes when I Google my blog to find it for someone (one of the about 10 total real life people I have shown this headspace) I come across the BlogHer description of my blog, which says something like "a generally light hearted" blog about parenting.

I hope you can tough it out for a bit when light hearted veers into the long dark tea time of my soul. It is always darkest before the dawn, but joy cometh in the morning, yada yada yada, and I will ultimately prevail. Don't say I didn't warn you, though.

Friday Haiku; Writer's Block, fear, and loathing in the basement

This week, I did write
Publish those posts, I did not
I am on the fence

I struggle to choose
Just how much I should reveal
About my foibles

I do have much joy
And lots of angsty sorrow
A Debbie Downer!

So first I will put
A motherhood post out now
Remembering us

And who we really are.

Friday, August 16, 2013

A "hello" Friday Haiku, For You

Absence makes the heart grow
when it's a blog you think of
I so missed it here

But I lacked the guts
to tell the truth of my life
once I fucked it up

And effed it I did.
Oh yes, I effed it fully
and so heartily

Now I'm inching back
slowly but determined now
to find a new path.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Bittersweet birthday without a Daddy, but still, a day to celebrate

Bitter + sweet = still sweet

There ought to be a mathematical formula for that but it escapes me.  We celebrated multiple times in multiple ways, including violently colored cupcakes delivered to her day care / summer camp class, sure to wind up even the most peaceful of kiddos.  There is a pile of real angst here, that for all the critical thoughts I had for Lord Honey not doing much to help me help Hannah, at least he showed up to the party on a holiday and now he doesn't do that.

For reasons that escape me entirely, I can't load pix directly from my ipad so I will have to do a bonus birthday post when I can jump that technological hurdle, but the fast facts are:

The Sophia the First talking castle - big hit
Cheap clip on earrings and amulets - huge hits
Bouncing at Jump Around Utah with the pals - another birthday party success

For me, my kids' birthdays are always a time for review, and so I looked back to Hannah's first birthday post on this blog, entitled Lucky, and indeed I know that I am. I love you, Little Bunny.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Thank you for reminding me to be grateful

The title here is from a comment I left on someone's blog in 2011. Right before I fell all to pieces, natch.  I didn't take the hint I gave myself.  Not gonna lose sight of that again, universe, I really won't. Gonna go be grateful and come back in a few. Or perhaps I will run away and hide. I really should have stayed here for therapy from you guys and not crawled into a hole I am only now beginning to dig out of, teaspoon by teaspoon.