Therapy isn’t going well at present

So just recently, my therapist (actually a psychologist) asked me about dissociation. This was in the context of me having had a bad weekend that I shared with him, and there was a moment where I dissociated, and thus told him about that.

He asked about dissociation so I told him using the easiest method I have. I mentioned some elementary school abuse story. Okay, I should have thought that through farther or something. But I didn’t and here I am. That was last week, I think. I don’t know. You guys would know better than me because I got into a not-quite-okay mode and posted here a lot. I even sketched a comic! I saw him twice that week because there was too much to possibly say because it lead into other things, like a time period I haven’t written about here although have alluded to several times.

Meanwhile, this psychologist stops me and says if I say any more about elementary school, he’s going to have to report it. But days later, he’s able to check with his ethics officer and for reasons I won’t share here, he doesn’t have to. If he had done so, it would have been the end of the world. I can’t share why on here. But without even the strength to put the true emotion into these words, MY world would have ended and so would several others’.

So then I feel safer again, and I share some things to him via email. Not too much, for me, but I hadn’t ever shared w/him outside of the office before, so it probably seemed like a lot.

Now to my point. Today, we had an appointment. I was so ill-feeling this morning (nerves because I didn’t know what to expect), I ended up taking anti-anxiety medicine earlier in the day. So, granted I was still on some amount of medicine by the time our appointment came around (it’s half-life is fairly short so it wasn’t a full dose). So it’s possible the medicine was interfering with any sort of ability of me to feel connected.

But it was weird. Kind of like nothing had ever come up? Well, but he did ask if I wanted to talk about anything? I don’t know. I don’t really know what happened. The whole appointment went by and I left and I’m wondering if it was productive in any way whatsoever. I can’t be wasting money like that. He did say that next appointment, I could talk about whatever I’d like. I asked if it would be helpful or harmful to talk about that shit. He thought perhaps it would be helpful.

So in that case — is that I checked with him several times to see if I could have permission via email to share things with him during this time. For example, any sketches or poems, that sometimes help me to try and explain something I can’t vocalize. He said that was fine to bring to him in-person, but he doesn’t want it being sent to him in other ways. He wants everything to be face-to-face. He gave more reasons for why face-to-face is superior but I don’t recall because I was busy talking to myself internally (well, it’s true. I was talking to myself mentally about how important it was for me to be able to share during the week, since I historically chicken-out the day of appointments and know I wouldn’t bring in anything). I did say that out loud — that I would probably be too shy to bring any in. I think I said it out loud, anyway. It’s all kind of a blur.

Anyway. This is all very unsettling for me because next week is my last week around before I’m gone for a while. Then he’s going to be gone for a while. So basically, why go to next week’s appointment? I should cancel that appointment. But maybe I only say that out of bitterness. Maybe it could be productive in some other way?

But I feel like he just doesn’t get it. The can of worms is already cracked open. Maybe he’s trying to put a lid on it. Maybe I’m trying to open it all the way, but that’s a long, long road to go back down.

There IS a desire in me to open the can of worms. I feel like, there is a piece of my life that I still haven’t threaded together into a cohesive narrative. I feel like I’m more ready now than I ever have been before, and I like to know what’s happened in my life and why and how I grew because of it. I ain’t talking about elementary school; that is black and white, easy to understand.

That part of me, that wants to open the can of worms, is really disappointed in this appointment. I know now that I had wanted an excuse for a muse. I had wanted him to inquire and be curious and try to learn more. I had wanted a reason to get out pencil and paper and sketch and revisit papers on that time period and thread together a cohesive understanding. But it’s a dangerous, time-consuming process and, knowing myself, I would need extra support in the meanwhile. I WOULD become clingy and desperate at times; I WOULD probably ask to come in twice a week instead of once at times. I might be weird as I dig through some dirt. But I feel like, in less than a month’s time, I’d have the understanding I so desire.

The one perk of waiting is that the VAST MAJORITY of my writings and drawings on this topic and FROM this time period and directly after are at my parents’ house. Perhaps I could gather those documents within the next year and have them ready. Perhaps I could go to an actual trauma specialist this time and do this once and for all.

That’s all well and good, but with this can of worms cracked, it’s difficult to turn my mind to other things, like homework. I made myself exercise A LOT this weekend, yesterday, and today. I think it helped prevent me from nose-diving straight into a terrible depression. Instead, I just feel kind of … unsupported and scared and like, I must have made a terrible mistake. Embarrassed, I guess. But that latter part is likely because I perceived no feedback from psychologist today. BUT, as I’ve already said, that is either because I was on anti-anxiety medicine and perhaps numbed my ability to sense connection, or perhaps he was staying withdrawn on purpose because my emails and sharing of that sketch scared the shit out of him and he took it literally like I was already clung to his leg or something. He didn’t make any comment about that sketch, btw. That probably made me very sad since I drew that to share with him something I experience.

Ah well, you know? Maybe he doesn’t know what the hell he’s doing. I always assume these psych people know what the hell they’re doing but what if they don’t. Or what if he does, and it was my exact contact during the week that caused today’s appointment to be non-existent…or the anti-anxiety drugs.. LOOP! 🙂

Comic: Not this process again (Comic#050)

Reverting from adult to child

Reversion

Hmm. I can’t figure out how to make this image click-able so you can see it blown up to full size (older pics of mine are still click-able). Perhaps it’s the theme I’m using. Maybe I’ll try switching to a different theme.
*UPDATE*: I fixed it! I had already tried two new themes before discovering what was different about this one compared with older ones that worked as links. I’m staying with a new, more open-feeling theme anyway.

Poem: Not understood

I WISH I HAD WORDS

I’D DESCRIBE THE FEAR
                               EMPTINESS

BUT YOU WEREN’T THERE

    your words
         your words

you’ll never understand

in this, i am alone
with no proof now
my palms are empty
not one grain of sand left to fall

just a memory
         and vocal cords that can speak and sing
         and fingers with which to type
         and a hand with which to draw

it would take a great deal of time and tearing open of old scars
to explain this to you

— innerdragon

Poem: Happy Father’s Day

I don’t want to be apart from those I love
Any longer.
Homesickness comes in waves
They spread in and expand
The foam pops and crackles.

I don’t want to live away from those I love
Anymore.

I MISS you. I’ve been missing you too much
For days
The feeling has been hard to bear.

To clarify, I’ve been on an emotional
Rollercoaster
Which gradually inched its way uphill
But fell from the track, straight down
Free fall.

But now you’ve tripped
Stumbled
Fallen
Getting stitches in your swollen lip
And a CAT scan of your head
And few memories,
Again.

And I’m so far away.

I can’t give you a hug.
I can’t spend my every minute of every hour with you.

I want to be with you both again.

Probably need

In truth, I probably need some extra help right now. My stress is up way too high. Interpersonal dynamics are very difficult for me right now. School is at a fairly overwhelming point. Tutoring is still going well but I probably shouldn’t have signed up for the max hours.

My SO’s mom, I haven’t written about this, but she is recovering from a cancer surgery. It was her fourth, distinct type of cancer removed. Nobody knows why she is so prone to having cancer. I don’t mean 4 different instances of the same cancer; I mean quite literally four different types. I’ve been around for two of them being removed; the other two types were removed long before I knew of my SO. She’s amazing. But this one involved part of the last adrenal being removed, so now she is in the process of figuring out proper cortisol dosing and it’s really hard. Sometimes she’s very exhausted.

It has changed the living dynamics, for me. My stress is through the roof. There is the worry, and the knowledge that at least two of the cancer types have a good chance of returning “someday”, and how it’s hard to see how tired she is when knowing her to be always so full of energy and drive at all times, before.

But there are the selfish monster stresses, too. Like when she chooses to cook for all of us, but I’d rather eat dog food than help with cooking, but now she sometimes does ask us to help, and I KNOW it’s the good and right thing to do, but at the same time, I’d really, honestly eat dog food if I had the choice of doing so OR cooking…

Or the times when I’d like to spend an evening with just my SO, but he invites his mum to literally everything we do now. But that’s SOOOO selfish of me. Why wouldn’t he want to see her enjoying the events, too? And why shouldn’t she? She’s been incredibly generous with me the whole time I’ve known her. Maybe he’s worried she won’t be around forever, you know? That’s totally understandable.

Quite frankly, if my folks would only move down here, I’d surely be inviting them to everything, too. I wish I could see them every single day of my life. It’s hard not to.

But the fear still keeps me away; I don’t honestly remember if I ever told any of that online here. Probably not. Since it’s all tied up in my fear.

Mortality is hard.

I suppose we’re all going to die. We’re all already dead. There’s no point in worrying about who is going to die when and first and how painful it’s going to be. I just have to live this every day and know, it’ll happen but every day is … one more bonus day.

Oh yeah. I just re-read the point of this post. I need to actually try to find a psychologist/counselor/whoever. Life is really high-pressure and stressful at this time. I honestly, honestly, honestly, don’t want to fall apart again. Been there, done that, DON’T WANT A REPEAT.

TW: Death of a grandparent

Well, you’ve been warned.

My grandma died today. It was unexpected. She was totally healthy, aside from being high in age. I hadn’t known, but she was even planning, with other relatives, to fly and visit my parents soon.

It’s sad for the living. I wonder how my dad is holding up. She’s his mom. He hadn’t come down last time there was a family get-together. He was going to see her when she came and visited. I can imagine he would have felt like there was still plenty of time; they were both healthy.

She woke up in the morning. She did the things she normally does. She and my mom were playing a word game electronically with each other; Grandma had put out another letter. But then she was found dead in bed.

All of my grandparents are dead now. It’s kind of unreal. Aside from the initial moments of feeling nothing at all, my next reaction is to crave childhood. To want to go back and re-experience all of the trips and be with them again, from the viewpoint of when life seemed stable and everyone around me was set in themselves and so sure. When I had total trust and faith and belief in the adults around me. And it seemed like everything would last forever.

So I want to curl up and listen to old, familiar music. I want to listen to what my grandparents would listen to, but I can’t think of it. I want to drink the drinks I drank when visiting them all, but most have eluded me. I remember one grandpa’s mystery punch. I remember being allowed to drink these really fancy sodas at the other grandparents’ house. I remember their yellowy-vinel-like table cloth on what I remember as a small, round table. There were a lot of animals there.

At one grandparents’ house, I would play lots of card games. My grandma there enjoyed Gin Rummy and would play any card game. My other grandparents used to play Dominos. I know we also played card games together; was it Hearts? I’ll have to ask my parents.

I can’t believe life.

School goes on, classes go on, work goes on. The people around me go on with their own worries and their own viewpoints. But it’s hard. My mind wants to be in the past. I don’t want to be in this moment. I don’t want to go to class; I don’t want to go to work; I don’t want to chat about anything of interest here. I want Family.

When people argue; Panic

It’s incredible the flood of anxiety I feel when people begin to argue.

These two people do not shout. These two people do not throw things. These two people do not hurt animals. These two people do not give each other the silent treatment later or love each other any less tomorrow.

But they do get intense with their voices. One of them is forceful and the voice raises, not in volume but in pitch. The other gets forceful and uses “YOU” statements that I find very rude. “YOU” are not listening. “YOU” have switched what you are arguing.

These arguments always end peacefully and they love each other the same immediately after. For them, the effects are null. They argue. They debate. It’s part of what they do. Frankly, I would go so far as to say it is part of who they are as people.

But for me, the effects are longer lasting. I will be afraid of them for days. It was not directed at me; nobody is arguing or debating with me. I have already put in my noise-isolating headphones and escaped up the stairs. I have already blared music directly into my earbuds.

But the flooding of anxiety is so strong and so immediate. It’s an emergency for me, when two people argue. It is danger. It is red alert. It is unpredictable and unsafe.

They will not hurt me. The worst either of them could do to me, based on who they are and what I have seen, is to use an insulting tone of voice and say “YOU” don’t understand what I am trying to say. Or something like that. That’s the worst I’ve seen or heard from them.

But my body goes straight to fear. My body says, the monsters have surrounded me. I am prepared to run. I am prepared to hide. I am prepared to face the streets in the dark at night amongst strangers. I am prepared to kill to protect myself.

My intestines prepare to evacuate immediately. I need to run. Outdoors. I need to be one speck in an infinite darkness, alone. Unknown. Safer.

Instead, I am trying to prep for bed. I brushed my teeth. I’m listening to my music, blaring into my ears. I can hear the voices. They are calm but still firm. It’s only a difference of opinion and grilling over various scientific studies to prove one side or the other. My shoes and coat were already on (because me and one of them were about to go on a very short walk). I am ready; I want to run. I could take anxiety medicine that will help me sleep. It’s been 30 minutes, right? I could take off my shoes and coat without offending. … Or I could slip past and go on a jog into the darkness.