rough session…rough day

MB and I had out weekly session today and for some reason it was a rough one. I think the more we dig the more shit we dig up the the harder it is to face. I am working so hard every single day and sometimes it feels like I have made zero progress – it’s so frustrating.

I have spent the past 23+ years angry and hating myself because of what OTHER people put into my head. Now the only problem is that it is now programmed into my head and I can’t seem to turn it off. It plays over and over and the voices are just there constantly feeding into every single ounce of self doubt that I have and no matter how hard I try and combat them I can’t seem to win. I fight and I fight and I fight and I never win.

I told MB today that the never ending cycle of trying to better myself feels like I am a hamster on a wheel. I spin and I spin and I never get anywhere. I’ve done diets upon diets…I’ve done it healthy, I’ve done it not healthy, I’ve done pills and I’ve done gyms and she said “well then what do you think you should do” and I said “get off the fucking wheel.” I was surprised at how quickly I responded to that. I told her I never thought of doing nothing..my life has always felt as though there were limits put on it when it came to my weight and eating. The idea of continuing with cooking, working out on my bike but not putting that pressure on myself to have it “change my life” I dunno…it hit me hard.

MB loves to timeline things out – this is both good and bad for me. Good because I have to face a lot of fucking facts that frankly I wouldn’t be nearly as fucked up as I am right now and bad for the same reasons lol. I can’t blame my mom for it all though – I have to be partially responsible. I could have spoken up sooner, I knew it was wrong to cut, i knew thinking about killing myself was wrong but I never had someone I could reach out to. I have that now and I have people in my life who don’t give a shit about what I weigh, what I look like or what I wear. I have people in my life that just love me for who I am: flaws and all. I can’t even love all the flaws yet and somehow they do. That kind of a gift? that is something that you can’t repay.

Before I leave my sessions MB always asks the same question “can you stay safe until I see you next” and USUALLY I’m pretty quick to say ‘YES’ but today, today she knew I wasn’t myself. I paused for a few seconds and said (not looking at her) “I’m fine” and since MB knows me back from when I was seeing E and doing DBT group she knows “I’m fine” is not really fine. We talked about finding out some health news about my mom and what feelings that brought up for me and the fact that I have my stress test on Friday and she knows how I am struggling with the decision I will eventually be faced with: having an ultrasound to determine my heart valve size or not having it. I thought a LOT of my uncle K today. He was just on my mind. He died so young and I wonder what HE would have done. I miss him so much.

So to avoid all these feelings I came home and ate some dinner – I wasn’t in a real cooking mood so I had just picked up some chicken from the grocery store already cooked. I had an urge to cook a little while ago and so I decided to make little mini apple pies (using a pumpkin pie mold I got from Crate and Barrel) and they actually turned out pretty yummy!!

Before Cooking

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After Cooking

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I think I will have to make these again.

For now I am going to relax and head off to bed. Goodnight all.

Facing demons…and it’s not even Halloween.

(my life has been so hectic I have been trying to get this post done since MONDAY lol)

So Saturday was one of my oldest friends wedding. I love H, she and I have been friends since high school and even though it can be months and months in between phone calls, emails, facebook messages we can just pick up like no time has passed. I knew going to this wedding there were going to be several girls there who made my teen years a living hell and lucky me…I got sat at the SAME table as all of them. At least this is the view I got to experience during the reception.

FALLDAY

Facing several of the girls who made my teen years a living hell was much harder than I anticipated it would be. It’s true when people say girls are cruel, mean and vicious. These girls would smile at you to your face as they were doing whatever they could to tear you down behind your back and here I was sitting back in front of them 10 years later and it didn’t seem like anything had changed. With some things hadn’t changed at all – same bitchy girls they always had been. JC was much nicer than I remember and seeing JM was great since she and I had been close in middle school and lost touch over the years.

All in all it was an emotionally exhausting day but I got through it. The days following where exhausting and left me feeling a little bit empty and devoid of anything. I got through this big event but not without feeling like I did when I was 15 years old again. Locking myself in my apartment, not showering, refusing to leave to see people…I became the hermit I used to be but this time I didn’t cut, I didn’t binge, I didn’t lose control. But it took every single ounce of who I was to not lose control that I didn’t have the energy to do a single thing.

I have been experimenting a lot in the kitchen as of late. Trying to make new foods and branch out and try new things. It’s been a great way for me to build my mastery skills and allow myself to find time for mindfulness. I still hate doing the dishes but now the dishes are less of a chore since I treat them as a mindfulness exercise. I haven’t gone too far out of the box but I’ve made some interesting dishes including homemade chunky applesauce, pumpkin bread and margherta pizza 🙂 It gives me a little bit of satisfaction like the way painting does – creating something myself. Cooking really can be therapeutic and I have to thank J for encouraging me to get out there and trying my hand at it all!

MB and I have been working on my self image in our weekly sessions and I wanted to do my part and have my yearly physical. My old PCP had left (I miss her – she really was a GREAT doctor) and met with the new doctor she transitioned me to. PS is a an okay doctor – she reminds me a LOT of Pam from the Office and she really does look like Jenna Fischer. I knew going into the physical that my weight was going to be an issue but something else came up that has left me feeling very overwhelmed. Because I hadn’t seen PS before she asked if there were any new medical conditions in my family and I mentioned the passing of my uncle K and the cardiac issues that we are now discovering throughout my mothers side of the family and so she thought it would be a good idea to get a baseline EKG just to have on file. I agreed. I had been told before that I had bradycardia so I wasn’t too worried about anything that an EKG might bring up and although I was pretty adamant that I don’t want to know if I suffer from what killed my uncle K and what my mother currently has I knew an EKG wouldn’t be able to determine that.

EKGs are funny…15 minutes to get all the things hooked up to you for something that takes like 2 minutes to read your heart. Needless to say I found out that at one point I had “an extra heart beat” and there was some other abnormalities that PS wanted to talk to her superior about. I sat in that office for 30 minutes before she came back. She (and her boss) feel that there is a possibility of ischemia and that I need to have a stress test. She didn’t really go into a lot of the details of what these abnormalities were and I am sure they are nothing but given the current cardiac issues that seem to be popping up in my family I have to admit it scared me. I tried to play it off that it was no big deal but on the inside? on the inside I was (and am) freaking out.

I feel like a complete wuss by freaking out over something that I have no control over. If I have these cardiac issues having the tests or not having the tests isn’t going to change that fact. In the words of J “what is meant to be is to be” and I understand that. I’m having the stress test next Friday because I have that day off. I will wait to find out the results of that before I decide if I want the ultrasound which will tell me if the valves of my aorta are enlarged and if heart surgery is anywhere in my future. These are all SCARY things for me. Facing down the idea of a death that I haven’t planned out myself – every thought of my own demise up until now was at my own hand. This is new territory and I don’t think people can fully understand what that weight feels like. I’ve spent the past year and a half working on WANTING to live and now I feel like I am at a crossroads. One path to get fully tested and if the results mean surgery or something life threatening then I will fight to live and the other path to continue to live without ever fully knowing the truth and possibly dying at any moment without warning.

Why do I feel like there isn’t a right answer here? I can’t talk with my family because whatever choice I make I need to feel supported and my biological family has already made it clear they don’t support my choice NOT to find out. MB and I always go back to the ‘broken coke machine’ analogy when it comes to my mother. I know MM and J will fully support whatever decision I make but I have put them both through so much with my ups and downs these past two years – it feels unfair to put anymore of my shit on their plate but I also know that I can’t do this alone.

Anyone out there have ANY advice?

Day off…

For one of the first times in my life I CHOSE to have some time off from work – a 4 day weekend! I don’t do this often and I am still working hard at not feeling guilty about it but it needed to be done. The pressure I put on myself when I am in the office is starting to become a little overwhelming. We have performance appraisals coming up and I am having a mini panic attack. I work super hard and the quality of my work is spot-on but that has NEVER been where my needs for improvement have come up. My needs for improvement have always been directed at my interpersonal skills (accurately directed…I completely acknowledge that).

Don’t get me wrong…I can TAKE constructive criticism and honestly? without it I am not sure if I would have made the strides I have over this past year. But I am just so wanting to go into my supervisors office and just hear the positive. I have been pushing, struggling, working so hard at trying to use my skills, trying to harness them and apply them to the very best of my ability. In the words of J (that I constantly tell myself  when things seem hard) “try harder.” The appraisals are based on more than just my supervisors observations but the observations of my peers – and considering my past with MO I am not so sure that I am going to have a lot of positive come from whatever she wrote about me. I know that I still need to work on stress management and learning how to hide it on my face. I know I still need to work on keeping my personal life out of work but I am so desperately hoping that the hard work I have been putting in doesn’t go unnoticed by the people I work with.

I can’t lose my job but what if this is the best I can possible do? What if no matter how much I try, no matter how much I work at using my skills it is never enough? My friend D told me I needed to learn how to “play the game” but that just seems so fake to me. Maybe it is my lack of wanting to “play the game” that will keep me from ever being considered as a leader at my job. I love my job and I love the work that we do – I know I won’t walk into my appraisal without SOME constructive feedback on areas of improvement (bring it on..I WANT to hear the constructive feedback) but I also want there to be a lot more positive feedback then I have gotten in the past. I just worry and FEAR that as much progress as I have made over the past 2 years of being there (I will have been there for 2 years in 12 days) won’t be enough.

Even on a day off I can’t stop worrying about work…there must be something really wrong with me.

To get out of my own head I went to the bookstore to get lost in inspiration. Got a few magazines, relaxed, and spent hours away from my computer and away from my email. I wanted to just stop thinking about my job, the stresses of not being enough and wondering how my performance appraisal is going to go. It was a BEAUTIFUL autumn day yesterday. The colors, the smells…it is my FAVORITE season. There is a crisp in the air, the vibrant colors bring to life the surroundings. Sometimes I wish I had the talent to be able to paint it all.

I have the wedding of one of my oldest friends today. I am feeling VERY conflicted because I love and adore my friend H but the group of people who I think are going to be there have only ever liked me when I was drunk because that was when I would come “out of my shell”. When you spend your life as the “funny fat friend” breaking that chain of thought is excruciating – I so desperately just want to get through this.  The expectations of “Drunk K” are going to be high and being surrounded by a lot of the people who made my teen years a LIVING hell is going to be it extraordinarily difficult to maintain a healthy balance. I can’t allow myself to be 16 again…I can’t give in to the pressures my mind is going to be pushing. God, I hope I am strong enough for this.

 

Wish me luck & have an amazing weekend…

learning to find my balance…

So after several consecutive days on the bike I took today off…my knees were starting to bother me and I know I need to listen when my body is telling me I am pushing myself too hard. I burn approx 630+ calories every time I get on the bike and I don’t eat all that much (not on purpose I just find that I never have the time lol) and so I am hoping this new found outlet brings me mental clarity and the chance to shed some MUCH needed pounds.

MB (my therapist) and I have been dealing with my body image issues. This is a topic that I am struggling with on many levels. I’m not doing any of the DBT skills work in my therapy with MB so I am trying to keep those skills in the forefront as I deal with some of these issues that are deeply rooted.

Lately I find myself finding it harder and harder to hide the stuff I have going on from coming out in destructive ways. I have gotten so good at being able to let things go, to be able to table my personal issues and keep it out of work but lately it’s becoming so hard. I find myself getting defensive for no reason, angry and upset at the little things and more and more my mind is going to self harm first and I am not able to focus on anything else. I even contemplated calling a suicide hotline the other day because I was so down. I ended up crying myself to sleep but the idea of a suicide hotline used to scare me…this time is sounded like a comfort. I don’t want to die and yet it’s sometimes the ONLY thing I can think about.

I am usually able to handle the stresses of my job (mostly) with ease but lately I feel like nothing I do is right, nothing I say is right and regardless of how hard I work and how hard I push myself it doesn’t matter. The problem is ME. I think these things and people can tell me over and over again the truth but my mind can’t focus on anything but the negative and false reality it seems to have cultivated. It’s like my brain is stuck in this fucked up loop of bullshit and no matter how much I try and reign myself back to reality I can’t get off the ride. I am taking some time off coming up – I need to be able to regroup and let myself decompress from the everyday crap that I can usually shrug off but as of late am only able to obsessively focus on.

I wish it was easier for me to be able to ride out the bad waves. Sometimes I can do it with ease but the past week or so it has felt like I am drowning in this wave. I come up for air and get sucked back down. It’s exhausting to fight the wave. I know I can’t falter, I can’t fall back into my old patterns and yet I can feel myself doing it. I committed myself to getting through this, for trying to live with borderline.

During my session with MB I confessed to her that I had tried to reach out to E but her email was no longer valid. She said “I am so glad you brought that up – she and I were emailing back and forth and she wanted me to share something with you”. A part of me was scared to hear what MB was going to say next or maybe I had just convinced myself that E left and didn’t give a shit about me or my quest for wellness. What MB said next brought happy tears to my eyes. She said that E got the job she had wanted and that she felt terrible but that for some reason she was never able to access her email when she left. She said she would be in contact with me when her new work email was up and running. As happy as I was…I felt like a complete and total asshole. I doubted one of the only people in my life who ever really cared and took an interest in helping me get better. She didn’t forget me…MB said she clearly thinks about me and that bond means something. How could I so quickly dismiss it? how could I think she would abandon me?

How do you guys handle the harder times? What things are you able to do to help you from self destructing?

On a lot of days my borderline just seems like another little piece of who I am and on other days it feels like that is the ONLY thing I am. That kind of back and forth to my emotional mind can be extraordinary difficult to manage and on the days where I can’t seem to focus on anything except the negative it can be so scary. Sometimes I worry I will cut again, sometimes I worry that the urges to drive my car into a lamp post will be so intense that I won’t be able to find a way to save myself. I know it probably sounds dramatic and over the top – sometimes I can’t find a middle ground…like I only have 2 ways to think. High or Low. No middle or common ground.

I need to find that balance. I need to believe that I have it deep inside me. Some days that is easier to believe than others – I just have to keep cleaning my lens and focusing on the things that matter, the important things in my life. I HAVE things to live for, I have people I care about and people who care about me…the ability to get through it is in me, I just have to dig a little deeper to find it.

Happy Friday everyone and thanks for listening!

 

trying to find some new footing

So since my post last night I have worked out on my bike, went grocery shopping and have started making something for a late lunch.

A walk in the brisk air also helped…I’m trying to clear my mind. Find the balance.

I should first state that I am NOT a chef, my overbearing mother however is, and I honestly don’t have much cooking experience. My idea of dinner is hitting up subway for an oven roasted chicken sandwich lol. I have always WANTED to be good at cooking but a lot of my problem is I *HATE* cleaning up afterwards. I am getting better at it all though.

Right now I have simmering on the stove the beginnings of Apple Cinnamon Butternut Squash soup. This is a daring attempt to step outside my comfort zone and really try and make something from scratch. I am scared it will be an epic fail.

Thankfully my entire apartment smells delicious right now…like fall. I pray the soup tastes as good as it smells. I love butternut squash and apples and cinnamon and it honestly doesn’t call for much apple so I think it might be a nice little hint of the taste and not overpower it.

Everything smell so delicious.

I sat with my emotions as I cut up the butternut squash, as I chopped the onion and the apple. I am at peace right now. I needed a day of crying I think in order to get those emotions out – holding in emotions is where it gets dangerous for me and as scary as it is to FEEL so much all at once it isn’t half as scary as doing something I know I’d regret; like cutting or worse.

Final product

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There are a few things I might do differently next time BUT it is actually pretty darn good!! I tastes like fall in a cup 🙂 It’s a little thicker than soup but tastes really great. There is a hint of apple and cinnamon but it pairs so nicely with the butternut squash 🙂

Fighting through the pain

The lessons are love

Lessons of love, that’s what they are.

We usually don’t know what the lesson is while we’re learning it. Maybe we’re not supposed to. Besides, if we knew it, really knew it, we wouldn’t need to learn it. We’d already be practicing it in our daily lives. Byt even when we don’t know what the lesson is, we can know one thing: it’s a lesson of love.

Courage. Faith. Patience. Loving ourselves when it looks and feels like nobody else cares. Starting over again one more time, when we think we’ve already started over again more times than we should have had to. Forgiveness. Compassion. Gentleness. Joy. Each one is a lesson of love.

For many of us, the problem isn’t that we haven’t had love in our lives before. The issue is that we haven’t understood love. Know this: not only are the lessons about love, the lessons themselves are love.

Feel your feelings. Struggle through your situations and experiences and emotions. The struggle to learn isn’t incidental to your purpose. It’s an integral part of your purpose, your destiny, your reason for being. Go through your moments of darkness and confusion, and trust that the light will come. Through it all, rest in one thought: you’re on track. You’re on your path.

You’re connected to love. You’re connected to God. And the lessons you’re learning are lessons of love.

Taken from ‘Journey to the Heart’ by Melody Beattie

Usually the passages of love tend to make me feel uncomfortable because learning to love myself is still pretty new to me.

I still struggle to feel the emotions, to sit with them, to try and understand them.

When things get tough for me now…I look at the picture of B’s grave. I look at it and remember how I told her I was going to work as hard as I can to get better.

I remember what it felt like to actually be there, to face that fear. It’s a reminder that facing the fears won’t kill me; that they can make me stronger.

Every moment I am learning, growing, changing…it’s all a process. I’m not thrilled with that since I am not patient lol but I am working at trying to be more patient with myself.

I am learning to allow myself to feel the feelings I have, to sit with my emotions and try and understand why I have them.

It’s not easy – especially when the emotions are anger. I hate thinking of myself as an “angry” person…it was almost easier to think of myself as depressed or anxious.

I know that anger is a normal human emotion but feeling it? Sometimes it makes me feel out of control.

I always wonder how much of my past could have been different if I had gotten help sooner, if I had found B’s grave sooner…but the reality is I didn’t. The reality is I found her when I was meant to, when I was emotionally well enough to. I loved her, I miss her and she will always be a part of me. I know this now. I am learning how to let go of the baggage and hold onto the memories. The old me didn’t understand the difference. I wasn’t open enough and my lens wasn’t clear enough to see it until now.

Hopefully this weekend I will write up what my last session with E was like. The emotions are still strong. She was such an important part of my life, I know I was an important part of her life. I won’t end up sharing everything because a lot of that I need for myself – but she meant so much to me and the last session was no exception to that.

The end isn’t always the end…

Tomorrow is the big day – my LAST official session with E.

I, for the first time in my life, completed a task that was super important to me for someone else. I finished E’s painting, matted and framed it. I PRAY she likes it.

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It’s hard to see in the picture but the color of the mat is a deep purple color – it helps bring out the purple in the sky and the colors in the shading on the petals.

I’m happy with how it looks. I’ve never really been happy with anything I’ve done…at least not happy enough to frame and give to someone as important to me as E. Don’t get me wrong I’ve given J tons of my stuff but I’ve never done something specifically for someone else…it’s extraordinarily personal.

Anyways…I will let you know what she says after my session with her…my last session 😦 The daily meditation for yesterday July 13th

See the snow on the Desert

I drove through Arizona’s petrified forest, a land where dinosaurs once roamed, then headed across the painted desert. A light dusting of snow covered the sane and shrubs. I felt both awe and surprise at the scene nature had created.

Nature does many things. Tornadoes blow across the land. Hurricanes pound the shores. Bolts of lightning streak through the sky. Dust storms fill the air. Nature petrifies wood, turning tress into beautiful crystal rocks, glowing with brilliant red and orange fossilized patterns. Nature takes centuries to carve bridges out of stone, using only wings and rains and the flow of water from other rocks. And sometimes, she puts snow on the forest.

Many things happen in our lives. Some of them are probable, consequential. Some of them are fluke and seem to come out of the blue, from nowhere. All the events work into a pattern, helping to create us, create our path through life, create our destiny. Sometimes we’re influenced greatly by a traumatic storm. Other times seemingly chance occurrences can change the entire pattern and course of our lives.

We don’t have to understand everything. Maybe we aren’t supposed to. We don’t have to be prepared for all the storms. Sometimes the greatest learning occurs when we’re caught off guard, by surprise.

Weather the storms. Let them pass. Keep your balance, as best you are able. Remember to be flexible and sway with the winds like the tall tress in the forest. Trust the flukes, too, those moments when it snows on the desert. Let destiny have its way with you.

Well if this isn’t EXACTLY what I needed to read.

E was my snow on the desert.

It wasn’t going to be there forever but the time it was there was wonderful.

She taught me to look outside the box, she taught me how to react and communicate with people better.

Her time in my life was for a reason.

She was here to teach me something just as my friendship with J, MM and JS have taught me.

I don’t know what the future holds but I whatever it is I will get through it: the good, the bad and the ugly.

I know I will get through it because of the friendships I have now and because I have the skills E taught me (and that will stay with me).

Tomorrow is going to be extremely difficult emotionally but I will get through it.

like a shooting star

I just got back from an extremely emotional trip.

My uncle K passed away on January 6th. He was this free thinking incredible spirit and he just dropped dead. It was unexpected and shook me to my core. My entire life I have run from death. His death hit me hard. Ever since I was a little kid he encouraged me to paint, think, draw and create. As an artist he created works that were unique, confusing, sexual and controversial. His work was unlike anything I had ever seen before and even though I didn’t get to experience a lot of his work I always found myself in awe when I was in the presence of his pieces. It’s hard to put into words how he touched my life – the last time I saw him was on Christmas as I was leaving my moms because I was sick…I spent so much time wishing I had stayed that day but honestly that wouldn’t have changed anything. I’ll always remember his hugs the most and how he chose to live in such a laid back way. How he believed in people and the good in them.

This past Saturday there was an art show of some of his work at a gallery he spent a lot of time at. People from all walks of life were there to remember him, mourn him, share stories and celebrate him. There was family everywhere (cousins and uncles from all over the US) and as sad it all was that we were getting to see each other under these circumstances it was nice to be able to see my extended family. I didn’t find myself emotional until the following day when we went to scatter his ashes.

We walked 4 miles out to this secluded beach as a family all 17 of us and released him. As I stood watching his ashes fall into the waves I couldn’t hold back the tears any longer and I let the flood gates go. Everyone was crying so I don’t know why it was so hard for me but it was. I hugged my cousin D and we smiled as the sun beat down. We knew he was watching. I let the tears fall as needed: like watching my grandfather hug my uncles girlfriend, how my uncles hugged each other, as my cousins shared stories of him. It was a beautiful scene on a beautiful day and damn if K wouldn’t have just loved it. We all slowly made our way back the 4 miles to the cars and talked, listened, picked up shells and I found 4 hearts in nature. I chatted with my cousins about life, stories about uncle K and about where we are all at in our lives. We tried to make the most of the fact that we were all together.

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(c) 2013 BorderlineMusings (sorry for the quality it was on my crappy camera phone)

We got home, feasted on Oysters and then went out to dinner in his honor. It was a day full of life, love and sadness. I like to think K was watching over us and smiling.

Monday I faced a huge fear. Monday I went to visit B’s grave.

It took me almost 19 years to get to this place. My mom never told me where B was buried, she never would let me go to her grave by myself but I found out where she was buried and so I made it my mission while I was on this vacation that I would visit her. I was scared shitless. I was afraid I would chicken out, that I wouldn’t get out of the car or I wouldn’t be able to find the exact location in the cemetery of her grave. I faced all those fears by myself.

I pulled into the small cemetery and immediately freaked out because I could not for the life of me remember where her grave was. I had these memories in my mind from when we were kids and we’d go visit her even though I wasn’t allowed out of the car. I drove my car around for 5 minutes and then I parked it. I sat in the car for 10 minutes. I told myself I needed to find her, I told myself that I deserved this and that B deserved this. I got out of the car and walked around. I could vividly remember her being close to the road and that there was a tree or shrub of some kind. I walked around for about 15 minutes (it felt like HOURS) and FINALLY I found her.

Seeing her grave for the first time in person that I can remember? I can’t even describe the emotions. I took a few deep breaths and sat down beside her. I cleaned off her grave and sat in silence as the teared flowed. I couldn’t have stopped the tears even if I wanted too but honestly? I didn’t want them to stop. I left her the white heart in nature I found (the 2nd largest one) at her grave, talked to her, shared stories with her. I relived memories and I thanked her for being in my life. I always used to be SO angry that I only knew her for such a short time that I wished I hadn’t known her at all but that was just the hurt talking. I fully and 100% know that I wouldn’t trade in those years for anything in the world and she forever changed me. She gave me a wonderful gift and gift was knowing her.

After I left B (nobody in my family knew that was where I went) I decided to go to a local store and process all my emotions. As I was finally driving back to where we were staying I saw this incredibly cool store on the side of the road called ‘Buddha’s Beads’ and I just HAD to pull in. I was able to get a pair of hand-painted earrings with lotus’s on them and 2 sets of prayer flags for my fire escape back home. I think it was the perfect way to spend my afternoon. Afterwards I went out to see an old high school friend who was now living where we were visiting. She is getting married in October so we got to hang out, drink a bottle of wine, talk about life, love, her wedding and everything in between. I experienced (what felt like) a hundred different emotions that day but at the end of the day when I reflected back…it was such an incredible day. It was sunny, beautiful, and I got to finally get some closure with B. I am sure E and I will be talking a TON about this soon lol but next week is our last session (potentially) before she leaves for her own new adventure.

I didn’t get much time to myself on this “vacation” but I was able to talk with J a little via email and even though I didn’t need her validation that I did the right thing about seeing B, about mourning uncle K – to KNOW someone was proud of me? that meant a lot to me. I never would have gotten to a place where I could have done ANY of that if it hadn’t been for J constantly pushing me, being there for me and encouraging me. She has truly been a rock for me and a sister through and through. I did this on my own, I got out of the car, I faced a HUGE fear but if I didn’t have the people back home in my life I don’t know if I could have done it. I love my friends, I love my co-workers and I know now more than ever that I belong here. That feels…good. Going to see B was scary, intense, overwhelming, emotional but so so SO worth it. I got to close up a little of that wound and now that I know where she is buried? I plan on going back to see her when I can.

June 19th

Your heart will guide you through

If you feel confused, alone, unsure of what to do next, go back to a place you can trust – your heart. In matters of work, money, love, play, go back to your heart.

The issues that arise in your life can be dealt with from the heart. You will be guided through gently, safely, with love and truth, along the path that’s best for you. Are you feeling upset? Do you wonder why things aren’t working out? Are you unsure of the map, uncertain of the next step, wondering how to untangle the mess of the past?

The answer isn’t in your head, it’s in your heart. It’s not outside of you, although sometimes we receive guidance from others. The answer you’re seeking, the guidance you’re looking for needs to feel right to you. It needs to resonate with your heart. Your heart is the center, the balance point for your emotions, your intellect, and your soul. Your heart is safe.

Go back to your heart. It will always lead you home.

Taken from Journey to the Heart by Melody Beattie

 

In so many ways this touches me today. I have people in my life who are there to remind me that I need to trust my heart, that I have a heart worth trusting even when I don’t think I do. These people help me, encourage me, guide me but also let me fly with my own two wings…that kind of friendship is PRICELESS and I am so blessed and honored to have them in my life.

I don’t always say the right things, I don’t always use my skills, I sometimes let the borderline have control but what I am slowly learning (in HUGE part thanks to J) is that I HAVE choice. I can let myself be bogged down by my disorder, I can let myself ruin relationships and friendships with the walls I put up or I can choose to be happy, I can choose to live.

That lesson is extraordinarily difficult…but worth it in more ways than one.

 

 

 

as the end gets near..

and no  I don’t mean that in some morbid way. Today I scheduled my last few sessions with E before she is off to start her own career in another state. I can’t fully begin to process what this means to me, what this means to my recovery, what it means to the next chapters of my life.

You know that feeling in your stomach when something new is happening? It isn’t dread, it isn’t fear and it isn’t happiness. It’s like the combination of all 3?

That is how I feel right now.

The feeling is probably something like ‘possibility’ or ‘adventure’ but most of my life by not feeling the bad I also stopped feeling the good…and I’m not entirely sure what either of those things FEEL like. How am I supposed to navigate during this uncertainty? More and more questions keep popping into my head and yet the fewer answers I am finding.

I met with MB, the therapist who is going to probably take over my care when E leaves, for my intake yesterday. Opening up to someone else, even though I am pretty familiar with MB because she was the leader of my DBT group, is so hard. It took so long for me to fully trust and open up to E and now I am supposed to sit back, feel abandoned (yes the kid in me feels like I am being abandoned…it isn’t the “mature” response but it is what I feel) and open up to someone else??? How can I do that? Thankfully MB did her best to put me at ease, to reassure me that she understands how hard of a transition this is going to be for me and I was grateful to her for that.

I know E came into my life for a season. I know she was here to help change me, to help me grow and that eventually she would need to spread her OWN wings and fly just as I have begun to. I wish I could say I’m not sad, that I don’t feel like her leaving isn’t like losing something super important…but right now? That IS how it feels. I need to GRIEVE this loss…and grieving something as it happens vs. letting it fester for almost 20 years? Very different…It’s incredibly scary for me. Hard to think of my life before E and even harder to think about going forward without her there to give me advice, push me to my limits. I know MB will do those things…but E was the first to really crack my outer shell (well her and J) and I know this has to happen but it still leaves me with a pit in my stomach. I know she is going to do AMAZING things and help more people just like me and I am so SO proud of her…but the child in me, she doesn’t want to feel abandoned. I need to comfort that child for awhile, reassure her that E isn’t gone forever and that I still have the people in my life who love and support me.

To be honest I don’t know why I am posting this or sharing it at all – it’s been weeks since I have posted and I finally update not about all the GOOD things that have been happening (which they have) but about this one thing I can’t seem to get my brain and heart to be on the same page about. Life, as of late, has actually been OKAY and besides the every day stresses at work and feeling exhausted most of the time things have really been on an upswing for me. I am grateful for that.

I feel bad not leaving you some nightly meditation! so here is one that struck me hard and has stayed with me for the past few days: May 26th

Awaken to your heart’s contentment

One day, you’ll awaken to discover your life is all you wanted and hoped it out would be.

Oh, you’ll not find everything just the way your head said you wanted it. It might not be the way you planned. But you’ll awaken to your dreams – your dreams of joy, love, and peace. Your dream of freedom.

You’ll see beyond the illusions. You’ll transcend your old limiting beliefs. You’ll wake up and notice that your past is just as it needed to be. You’ll see where you are today is good. You’ll notice that you laugh a lot, cry a lot, smile a lot.

You’ll look at tomorrow with peace, faith, and hope – knowing that while you cannot control some of what life does, you have possibilities and powers in any circumstance life might bright. The struggle you have lived with for so many years, the struggle in your heart, has disappeared. You’re secure, at peace with yourself and your place in this world.

One day, you’ll awaken to your heart’s contentment. Let that day be today.

Taken from Journey to the Heart by Melody Beattie

I will leave you to ponder what it means to YOU to awaken your heart. I know how it makes me feel – I know what it stirred up inside me to read this even a second time.

I’m back

It’s been weeks and weeks since I have posted last and I have to apologize for just halting all my posts.

Things at work have been…crazy to say the least.

One of the (many) problems that I have is: I am a workaholic. I love the people I work with, I enjoy my job and I appreciate all the opportunities I have been given over the past year and a half. M has only been cleared to come back to work for 4 hours a day and at one point last week MM was out sick twice and one day JS had to leave early! I feel like I have been taking on the brunt of the work. I NEVER could have done that a year ago – fuck I couldn’t have done that 6 months ago but I think I did a fantastic job handling the stress. E is baffled as to how long I am going to be able to do this and she has every reason to wonder that – on Tues night I hit the wall. I crashed into that wall at 100 miles an hour and lost it.

I am noticing that when the good days last longer and longer when I finally hit the wall it feels like I am hitting it harder than I ever have, does anyone else experience this? With work, my sessions with E are getting more and more intense and I even took on a big project at work as well (which has since ended – thank GOD!). I also found out that M graduated with the one person in my life that I will never see again. She knew B, she knew her and grew up with her! I had finally made peace with the fact that mom wasn’t going to share with me any aspect of that part of our lives. Mom likes control. I wasn’t allowed to mourn B’s passing, I wasn’t allowed to visit her grave and she has NEVER once told me where B is buried….and all of that changed with me asking M one question. My entire world felt like it was spinning, it was like opening up this Pandora’s box of feelings and emotions that I forgot I had, that I forgot I could feel. I was comforted that someone else knew her but sad and upset that I still felt abandoned by her. It felt as if my skin was peeled back and I was completely exposed, raw, naked and flooded with memories of B and the short time she was a part of our lives. I felt like I was 10 years old again, my childhood gone, my reality forever changed…the wound that finally started to heal was ripped wide open and the flooding of emotions couldn’t be stopped.

Among all of this craziness I also had the chance to celebrate one year of seeing E! I couldn’t believe it. The girl who never ever wanted to be in therapy just celebrated one year with her therapist! E was so sweet – at my session she brought me a cupcake and got me a water bottle from the MoMa 🙂 I am going to be so sad when she finally leaves. I have to keep telling myself that she is going to help so many others out there like me, that she is going to do great and wonderful things and I am hopeful that there will be a chance to somehow keep in touch with her once she leaves. I know she has come into my life for a season – to help save me, to help me discover pieces of myself and to be the first to listen to all of my secrets. Saying good-bye isn’t one of the things I do the best but she has assured me that she is going to see me through the transition to my new therapist MB.

For the most part I really have been on an up-swing and the crash I had…well that was a long time coming I think. I rode the wave, I felt the feelings and I got through it. I know E is right, I know I need to do DBT again and I most likely will but I am still trying to weigh my pros and cons. I know that I want to move up in my job and J has given me some GREAT feedback about seeing me as Leadership potential and so I know that by doing another round of DBT it won’t only be good for me personally and emotionally but it will also help me professionally in “climbing” the latter so-to-speak.

J has been helping me find other creative outlets in gardening. She has this green thumb that I can’t explain and watching her seedlings go to full blown flowers? fucking nothing cooler than that. So I bought myself a cute little plant that totally inspired the shit out of me and then started growing some seedlings of my own out on my fire escape at my apartment. It acts as this lesson about how I need to treat myself as I treat the seedlings…patience, nurturing, tenderness, attention. It makes so much sense when you apply this to the plants and yet somehow I struggle so deeply with trying to apply it to my own life…why is that? why is it that I never ever seem to put as much care into myself as I do with my work, my art and the things around me?

There have been many nightly meditations over the past few weeks – some that have touched me greatly, some that acted as harsh reminders and others that I don’t think (at this moment in time) apply to me. I am still reading them every night, I am still trying to find meaning in them and I share them with J and I think (and hope) she gets as much out of them as I do. The more I get to know of her the more I feel connected to her…like she is my sister. I know that sounds silly but the friendship really does feel that deep to me. She and E have both agreed to meet (just to say hello) before E leaves – I want the two most influential people in my life to meet each other. It won’t be a session or anything – I just want them to meet since I talk about them to each other ALL the time. I am so thrilled they both agreed.

I will leave you with today’s actual meditation. If you want to know what some of the other days meditations were I would be happy to share them with you in the comments section 🙂

Love yourself enough to Relax

Our bodies react to the world around us – and within us – in many ways. Our bodies act like sponges – they can soak up healing energy or they can absorb and trap the negative energy of stress and tension. Some of us are so used to keeping our bodies tense and bound up we don’t even notice how much they hurt, how strained and tight our muscles are.

Connect with your body. Learn to tell how tense it is. Take a few moments throughout the day to see what hurts, what aches, what muscles are being strained. Although tension can affect the entire body, many of us have favorite places in our body to store stress, places that usually become tense, rigid, and full of aches. Necks, shoulders, lower backs are favorite traps. Become familiar with your body and where it stores stress and tension.

Then, learn to relax. Explore different options. Therapeutic massage. Self-hypnosis. Meditation. Soaking in a hot bath. Sitting in the steam room. Exercise. Visualization. Taking time to do activities that bring you pleasure. If you make the effort to explore relaxation techniques, you will find ways to relax that you like and can afford.

If you’ve been soaking up too much stress, give yourself a break. Let your body start soaking up some healing energy, too. Love yourself enough to help your body relax.

This is one I have actually been practicing today. Relaxing. Taking a hot shower. Watching TV. Painting. I used to have such an issue with allowing myself to take the time for myself. I used to feel lazy and guilty. I have been reading a book that J lent me called “View from a Sketchbook” and enjoying it a lot. There is something about how the way they describe the world around, the prairie, the things they see and witness. I dunno…it’s almost poetic.

I am feeling a little blocked on the creative front which is a little frustrating for me but I checked on my little sprouts this morning, curled up in my chair, watched some more Dexter and fully let myself take comfort in doing whatever it is I feel like. I am coming to the deeper realization that I’m not the same person anymore.

I left home as soon as I graduated high school because I never felt like I belonged, I never appreciated the quiet, I never appreciated any of it. Now that I am back…now that I feel like I am a person that is worth living…I don’t know…it is like I appreciate it all far more than I ever imagined. Coming back here was a leap of faith, one final stitch effort to find meaning in what felt like my entire meaningless existence. What I actually found was so much more…hope, family, faith, friendship. Things I don’t ever want to lose again.

I have so many to thank for that. So when I am crashing in the waves I remember that I am not alone. I have people who are there to help me back up and make sure that I never drown.

I leave you with a 4 leaf clover I am growing and my little sprouts (as I call them :))

4leafclover sprouts

(c) borderlinemusings 2013