Monday, January 21, 2013

Like a really screwed up puzzle.

Have you ever had days where you sit back and think, "Holy jesus- I'm a hot mess."? Because that's how I started feeling yesterday. It's really weird, but in the last few months I've felt like this internal storm was brewing. The clouds are rolling in and I know shit's about to get real and awful but I'm too terrified to do anything about it.

Because it's going to make me realize I have a lot of really fucked up things going on inside me that I've just never dealt with.

It's not that I'm afraid to do it. I know what I need to talk about, I know what my issues are, I know that I have some very large things I need to handle and the only way to handle them is to ask someone near and dear to me about them. And this will be bad.

In the back of my head I'm waging the war of trying to helping myself... but it'd be at the cost of others. Is it selfish to work on me when I know I'd have to drag someone into it and force them to maybe confront something they don't want to? It's like I'm forcing that person to make the same step I am... and that's not right. It feels very wrong. The catch is that I don't think I'll fully ever get better and feel normal until I do this...

... so what do I do?

I've often been told that I say or do things that don't take into consideration of other people. I feel I'm the opposite. I weigh things in my heart and mind for so long they start to feel toxic. I get anxious. I get depressed. I don't want to hurt feelings or make someone feel like they've failed.

Then I think... what difference does it make? What if I never, ever bring it up with them? Will I be unhappy forever? Is this just some kind of phase I'm going through? And what if I have this chat with the person and they are really upset with me? I'll feel even worse. I'll feel like I made a bad decision that I can't take back and maybe not ever fix. And would hashing this out even serve a purpose? What do I expect to gain from it? I don't even know.

And it's all brought on with my relationship with Olivia. Good lord I love that girl more than anything. And I look at her sometimes and see this sad little spirit. She's anxious. She's sometimes overly emotional about really dumb things that to me, are inconsequential, but to her it's the world. And then I catch myself talking negatively to her. Or I wonder to myself, when was the last time I said she did a good job, or that I was proud of her? It's scary to think I could be really damaging them because I've got some issues I've just never dealt with. I'm trying so hard to do for my kids that I didn't have, give them opportunities I didn't get to experience and wish I did, and to be the parent I wish I had.

Which makes it sound like I had horrible parents, and I didn't. Not at all. In fact, I had GREAT parents. I had parents that some of my friends wished they had. My parents actually cared what happened to me, and wanted me to do good and do something with my life. I was always provided for and had what I needed. In all reality, I think we all wish for more. We wish we had more, the people around us did more for us, etc. We all want more.

What I'm struggling with is my more... reasonable? I need to find myself a really good, impartial, low cost/free person to talk to. I need someone else to be able to say everything I need to, everything I've bottled up for my entire life and just get it all out there. The bad and the ugly. I have some pretty haunting experiences from my childhood I don't think my parents know about and I have confused emotions about a lot of current things and I think they are all related. For the first time in my life, I think everything is related.

And I hate it.

I hate thinking I'm one of those people who blame things in their past for their present. I really get annoyed at these people and say get the fuck over it. Seriously. So what you're dad was an alcoholic, join the fucking club- we meet on Mondays. Your dad having a drinking problem does not make you a whore. It just doesn't. I feel like you have to have some accountability and you can't blame things. I feel like my entire life I've really been good at rationalizing things, and not being overly emotional. I try not to make emotional decisions. I'm a pretty calm, cool, and collected person in a crisis. But I'm starting to think that maybe I just accept less from people because I feel like it's better than nothing. I mean, things could always be worse. How many times do I say either of those statements in a day? Countless.

And then I think about all of the things I wanted to do with my life. I wanted to go to college and get a ton of degrees in science. I wanted to travel. I wanted to live abroad. I wanted to fall madly in love and be swept off my feet. I wanted to live in a big house and have people here all of the time. I wanted to entertain and be that mom everyone wanted as their mom. And it's just not there. I struggle with admitting that maybe I made a wrong decision. Maybe I was wrong and everything I thought I wanted I don't really. Maybe I know deep down I can't be any of these. I don't have the background to allow me to be any of these things. I try so hard to just be enough and it's not working.

As cliche as it is, I was watching Dr. Phil the other day about perfectionist moms and he said that eventually, you keep all of these balls in the air and one by one, you drop them. And it's terrifying. So to not drop any more, you keep a tighter grip on what you do have and it just gets worse. Until eventually, you're left with nothing. That's exactly how I feel. I try to do it all. I can't just not do it, and I don't think people get that. My worth comes from my contributions. But at the same time, I get crippling anxiety when I need to do any of these things. It's horrible.

So yes. This year? This year I'm making changes. I'm going to be a better mom. I'm going to try to be a better wife. I'm going to try to get right with my brain and figure it out. But every time I hear this song it just pulls me in and it's me. Every line of it is me and that's terrifying. It's hard to fake what I won't be. 


middle child said...

The first time I went to therapy I didn't have the money so thru Catholic charities (I am not Catholic) I got hooked up with a place where they charge you on a sliding scale. Now our insurance co-pay is only $15.
The best thing for you is to see a therapist a couple times a week if possible to not only get some of this out but more so to have someone listen without being judgemental. To give you tools to work with. ETC.
If you can't or won't do this, you may want to share on your blog if it is private. But please consider talking to a professional first and foremost. Please. I really, really care about you. XOXOXO

Ruth said...

I don't think it is a matter of blaming. We are all a product of how we grew up. And some things just get us stuck. I have a lot of issues because of my upbringing. It wasn't a bad way to grow up, but it did shape me.
Talking with someone is good. Lots of people just want to take a pill and that just masks things. I really believe in getting things out.
There are places that do things on a sliding scale according to income. Here is Catholic Charities, but you don't have to be Catholic to go to there counseling. You could look into that type of thing.
I used to think that I needed to do things a certain way and I drove myself nuts. I have learned that doing things the way I want or I am able is OK and it's OK not to work myself to death by having everything perfect. My life has turned out so much different than I ever imagined it would be.

Kattrina said...

I think you're a great mom and a great wife and I don't think you're screwing up your kids. I also think that things in the past come back to haunt us at the most inoportune times and eventually you have to deal with them. You can only bury pain/feelings/emotions for so long - they eventually seep to the top and spill over. And as much as you don't want to accept it, your past helps shape you as a person - but it's not all bad. A bad past can still shape you into a wonderful person, but don't let that wonderfulness be overshadowed by the pain building up inside of you. You should definitely try to talk to someone - does your insurance not cover mental health? Can you talk to someone at the university for a reduced cost (since you work there)? Or sometimes there are centers that have sliding scale - you should look for that. And good luck! The longer you keep things buried, the harder it is to dig yourself out, but you can do it. And you can always have the life you want, but make sure you aren't dreaming of a life you think you want. Take a look at the life you have, because it might be just as amazing as the life you envisioned for yourself.

Julie H said...

I think when women hit around the age of 30 and have their own children they spend a lot of time reflecting on how things were when they were children and how how their mother's did things. I know I did and so did all my friends. It's really a time for self reflection and wondering WTH your parents were thinking. I've long ago given up on tryin to be a perfect mom. I just do what I can. there is no person that ever thinks they grew up with the perfect parents. We are all human and we make mistakes.

Gini said...

Oh honey. I don't have any suggestions, but I love you. Hugs and hugs and hugs.

Unknown said...

Good luck hon. I know it's so hard. You can only make changes when you decide that you want and need to change--and it sounds like you've hit that point. Therapy isn't about giving you the answers, but rather helping you figure out what those answers are, and using them to make productive changes in your life.
I learned that my husband isn't perfect, but rather he tends to reflect the things I don't like about myself---back at me. The issues I have with him, really are the issues I have with myself.

Make an effort to say two nice things for every criticism you find yourself saying to Olivia. Hell...praise the girl for everything. seriously.