Mad as Hell

I’m wondering if therapy every 2 weeks is enough and my therapist agrees.  She said that things seem to accumulate in me and I get overwhelmed.  For instance, yesterday’s appointment I come in, sit down and just dump.  I feel comfortable with her now and I just let it all out quickly.

I started with telling her about how I’m relating to people around me which is to say I’m very very guarded right now.  I feel like I’m hugging myself and shielding me from most other than a trusted few.  A person that I considered a friend who hasn’t been treating me like a friend for awhile came out of nowhere last week and offered to take me to lunch.  I immediately felt anxious so I declined kindly and offered to email to chat, which she never followed up on.  I’ve felt guilty about it ever since and have almost contacted her by text or Facebook since, but have not.  In the meantime I’m finding out that other people in my life don’t like her or trust her at all and only kept her around because they knew I did, which I had no idea was the case.  My therapist asked me why I felt guilty.  When I explained it was because I knew her life was hard and she had a hard upbringing she said quite bluntly, “You can’t fix any of that for her, nor should you.”

She advised me that I will be feeling things very intensely now that I’m examining parts of myself and my life more closely.  I also need to really think about what I want my circle to be made up of and to not be surprised when in 2, 5 or 10 years the people around me will be very different.  Right now I do not need or want drama and as I get better about setting boundaries the guilt will disappear because I will automatically be comfortable asking myself “what does this person offer me or bring me to the friendship?”  If it’s not healthy, I will easily turn away.

I also talked to her about how I took her advice and tried to think about what I want, really want in a relationship.  I struggled with coming up with things I deserved vs. what I thought I could have.  I also struggled with writing down things I thought John could provide me vs. my ultimate needs.  I’m supposed to keep working on this, and when I get overwhelmed take a break and come back to it.

This lead me to my next “confession” to her.  Today we had an employee dealing with some domestic violence situations and I confessed to my boss that I also lived through that as a child.  I have no idea why I said it, but when I told her the story of how in the middle of the night we had to pack up what we could and escape to Kentucky with the help of my grandparents from an abusive stepfather, I got very emotional.  I NEVER get emotional telling this story when I have relayed it to people in my life.  Mostly I get mad or proud that I lived through it.  This time I couldn’t fight back how sad I was.  This took me by complete surprise.

My therapist again reminded me I was now in a place, doing real work on myself, where I was going to feel everything I should have felt all along about the trauma in my life.  That it was real trauma and a lot of it, but I didn’t have the outlet or validation to properly deal with it.  Now I do.  I agreed, of course.  I’ve spent my entire life being the strong one or overlooking it because it made me stronger.  Which are all great things that I am grateful I was able to take and build from, but at the same time I need to be sad and angry.  And that led me to my next question.

I told her about my mother coming up for Mother’s Day last weekend and how she was pretty awful.  Overbearing, telling me about weight loss pills then bringing in donuts, nothing I made or said was good enough or couldn’t be better with her suggestion, even the care of my kid when she was sick.  The food she sorta made for brunch was the best thing there, including her dessert and no one could say otherwise.  That I couldn’t wait for her to leave and then I felt really guilty.  Followed by a discussion today about her on-going medical situation and how her doctor said therapy wasn’t right for her  (after I suggested it) right now and was just giving her pills and shots instead.  As in “I know better and it’s cute you are going.”

“Is it okay to feel mad?  Because I am so mad.  I’m so pissed off that my parents just couldn’t be decent parents to me.  How hard is it to make it about me for one second in my entire life? To tell me I’m a great artist, or that I’m beautiful or to let me be me to take up space.  I’m so mad.  I look at my kid and realize how easy it is to give myself to her and I’m pissed off and tired of making excuses for my parents being bad at it.  On the other hand I hate blaming my parents for how I turned out, but I really want to, even briefly acknowledge that I’m here in this chair because they are so selfish.”

To which she answered, “Would you allow me to have two arms?  If I told you I had one arm you would look at me like I was crazy.  Clearly I have two.  That is the same thing with feelings.  They are real and you need to feel them.”

As far as my mother goes, she is my mother and it will always be different than any other relationship.  I will one day just be better about boundaries.

She made this great and profound statement as well about feelings.  She said that I probably feel like I have a lot of holes.  I told her I feel as if wind could pass through me.  She said that when we don’t process feelings correctly or let ourselves grieve and cry or get mad, we create holes we try to fill with over eating, shopping, self-harm, etc. when if we let ourselves have the cry or the anger, it will fill those holes back up properly.

That night I came home and made a healthy dinner, went for a long walk and had a good talk with a neighbor, and ended up having a few glasses of wine and a couple smores.  I suppose that’s balance, but I could tell the wine and smores were masking something I didn’t want to deal with from that session too.  I got out my notebook but instead of writing fell asleep.  Something to work on.

My goal for the next couple weeks until my next appointment is to continue with the self care: sitting alone, reading, exercising, eating healthy meals, surrounding myself with people I can trust and love me, even if it seems selfish, keep going.  I’m going to continue working on writing out what I want.  I’m going to sit in my feelings a bit as well.  Writing here will help that for sure.

I feel better this morning, out of sorts but better.  I like that she asks me how I’m feeling at the start and end of each session.  I should ask myself that more as well.

-Lulu

 

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