This blog is part of my recovery, and I would like it to remain a safe place for me to share parts of myself and my life that people close to me may or may not know. As a result, while I'm not going crazy with privacy settings, I do ask that if you find this on your own and suspect you may know me, please respect my privacy by checking with us before reading any further. This obviously doesn't apply if one of us has given you the link!

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Sanguine Saturday Again!

I've rewritten this week's introduction several times now, I think it's time to give up on it and just get to the positives. This will start turning back around eventually if I just keep hanging in there.

Success Stories:
I'm still here.
I was honest in a situation where I wanted to lie in order to be a lot more destructive.
I made a phone call that was scary.
On several occasions I talked myself out of my more destructive form of self harm, even though I felt like it wouldn't matter.
I attempted some new alternatives. They may not necessarily have worked perfectly, but at least I tried.
I cleaned my room some.
I faced my fear instead of avoiding and told a few people something they needed/I wanted them to know.
I actually forced myself out of the house a few times.

Gratitudes/things that make me happy:
My friends.
People saying rude things to watch me blush.
Music and singing along.
Star Trek.

Challenge and cheer-leading statements:
Even if things are screwy right now, in this moment... every moment is a new moment.
Messing up doesn't necessarily mean I'm a bad person.
How my family treats me, talks to me, reacts to me or otherwise interacts with me is not necessarily a reflection on me.

Shoot me the link if you post up any version of Sanguine Saturday (any day, any format, as long as it's positive-focused!) and don't forget to check out this week's list of Sanguine Saturday versions:
Sairs of This Lunatic Express: back to work today
Jennifer of Magnificasti Mirabilia: created

Take care of yourselves until next time, and may we all find our own small fences along the way.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Sanguine Sunday: Who Cares If It's Late As Long As It's Posted

I'm still keeping my head (mostly) above water. That's good enough, it really is. Thank you to everyone for the responses to my 'running' post, I will get back to you all on there, I haven't forgotten.

I have to say, I'm so proud and pleased and just absolutely tickled pink at the response to the SS challenge I gave you all. Sairs of This Lunatic Express and bpdisme of BPDisMe have both taken the challenge on board as a regular thing, now, in their own way, and I've been promised a post by another friend as long as I post one for myself this week. I'm not really in a frame of mind to detail it, but the challenge is still active and I look forward to having new links next week to your own version of SS!

Success Stories:
I'm still here.
I discussed with a good friend my options on a decision that I have to make (re my mother's upcoming surgery/recovery and my move). I am proud that didn't ask her to tell me what to do!
I managed to visit a small (craft/scrapbooking) shop with Erica this week and not have a panic attack.
I survived a roach in my room.
I've had some very very honest and authentic conversations with some friends; and I've reached out a few times.

Gratitudes/things that make me happy:
My friends.
(*ETA) Giraffes!

Can't believe I was in such a strop I didn't even include giraffes!

Challenge and cheer-leading statements:
All feelings are real and valid. All feelings will pass.
However I feel is okay.
WWMD. (What Would [acquaintance] Do?) No, really. Get in his shoes and really think about it.

Take care of yourselves until next time, and may we all find our own small fences along the way.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

I Guess Sometimes Running Isn't The Answer

Here I am, doing the same thing I have always done, hoping for a better outcome without changing the direction of the flooding tide. There are heavy decisions hanging over my head that I am avoiding in hopes that they will make themselves; if I wait long enough, they might... but having them hanging is not making each day easier.

Avoidance. Escape. I want them; I feel as though I need them.

I know that avoidance as a coping mechanism almost all of the time falls short of "helpful" or "healthy"; and yet... It has been more than a week since I sat at my stepmother's table and shared a meal with them. I have tried to push away the thoughts, the emotions, the ideas. I have worked to build ladders against the walls of paranoia so that I can pretend they don't exist. I have built dams and wells and thrown into them the sadness, the guilt, the fear, the anger, the shame, the disgust. They continue to bubble up, bubble out and flood my brain the way the Brisbane river flooded Southbank last week. I have alternately reached out and retreated; struck out and struck in; fought and loved and hidden. And what I have done more than anything else is run. In any way I can, I have taken off running and not stopped until that panicked feeling went down a little again.

I need to find a way to control this crisis, because this became one far too quickly and far too strongly. I am in serious distress and I need to level it out enough that my skills have some impact.

I've been thinking about this all day, and I think I know how I'm going to do that. I think I know the right way to handle this, but I'm not absolutely sure. I might make it worse - but at least I will have tried... and if I don't do anything, it's still going to keep getting worse on its own.

Don't get me wrong; as much as I have avoided, I have also been trying to do what I need to, in tiny ways. I wrote a journal; I wasted about four thousand words avoiding and then I wrote a thousand words about the visit. I have mentioned that I'm struggling. And tiny ways at trying this are great, but they're not enough. if I want to keep my head above water, I need to make bigger steps.

I need to actually stop running. I need to start looking at this for what it was, and that's going to mean learning how to accept it. It's going to mean talking about it and writing about it and actually being honest about it. It's going to be uncomfortable.

But how do I voice this tangle of emotions? How do I extricate myself from the guilt, shame and disgust long enough to allow any of the other emotions a look in; or for long enough to allow anyone else in? I need to figure it out and soon.

I need to trust in my own beliefs, I need to trust in my own self; I need to let go enough to trust in the pockets of safety that there are here where the waters aren't so rough and I can rest a little.

When you are swept off your feet and carried away on the tide, how do you regain your equilibrium?

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Sanguine Saturday Has Come Again

Woah. I think everyone who reads this blog knows what's been going on here in Queensland lately, but just in case there's someone who doesn't, there has been widespread flooding that has even affected Brisbane. Last I heard, 75% of Queensland (an area that is roughly equivalent to 5 times the size of the UK or twice the size of Texas) is considered a disaster zone; and in fact, five of Australia's seven states/territories are now experiencing major floods.

Having said that, though, I am not officially in Brisbane, and I have not been personally affected by the flooding. There has been some (much less devastating) flooding nearer to me, and it's been awful watching all the news coverage and seeing the damage and hearing the stories, though.

Flooding aside, this has been another rough week. I'm really struggling, so there's still not much of substance in the way of success stories. For now, trying to keep my head above water is good enough.

This week, I have a couple of positive links to share! My beautiful friend Sonya, over at My Verse, has posted up another Great Things list, and this week Sairs from My Lunatic Express has posted her version of Sanguine Saturday as well! Who's going to join us in the positivity challenge this week? Remember, this is your version of Sanguine Saturday - if my format doesn't work for you, go ahead and blog some positivity in your own way, on a day that works for you! And don't forget to share the link with me when you join in and blog, so that I can link to you in the next installment!

Success Stories:
I eventually managed to journal about my visit to my father's.
I'm sober right now.
I left the house on Thursday and again on Friday.
Since I was leaving the house anyway, I did the right thing and sought the medical attention I should've got days ago.
I had a couple of tricky situations that I didn't take off and run from.
I was able to make a couple of good decisions re movies, TV and books.

Gratitudes/things that make me happy:
Good friends.
Being able to skype with my best friend.

Challenge and cheer-leading statements:
I can survive anything I choose to survive.
Some dynamics don't change just because I'm an adult now.
All feelings are real and valid. All feelings will pass.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Sanguine Sunday: Better Late Than Never

This week's Sanguine Saturday post has been a real struggle, definitely the hardest one since I started this blog. Things are pretty shaky.... but I'm still here.

I have a Great Things post to share, courtesy of my lovely friend Sonya, over at My Verse. She took up the challenge and posted her version of Sanguine Saturday this week... who will join us next week? If you join the challenge and blog your own version of a Sanguine Saturday, don't forget to share the link with me so I can link you next week.

Success Stories:
I'm still alive.
I'm posting this - late on Sunday evening but still on the weekend.
I had some very authentic conversations with good friends.
I wrote two journal entries, despite major difficulty starting. And I intend to build on those.
I am currently sober.

Gratitudes/things that make me happy:
Good friends who provide invaluable support, love and acceptance.
Platypuses. Because I can find them everywhere!

Challenge and cheer-leading statements:
SI or lack of SI is not a reliable indicator of how I feel.
I can survive anything I choose to survive.

Take care of yourselves until next time, and may we all find our own small fences along the way. And don't forget to blog your own version of Sanguine Saturday this week! ;)

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Midweek Musings: Trusting

Today, at the end of a long and difficult counselling session, Carol pulled out some Angels With Attitude cards and asked me to choose one or more. She gave me the option of looking through the deck in order to choose, but I decided to pull one at random. As she began to fan the deck out in front of me, I pulled one of the more exposed cards and turned it over.

"Trust", it said, and I laughed through my tears. What an appropriate card for me right now.

In spite of everything, I am generally a very trusting person. I am naive, innocent, gullible and I both believe and believe in people. I trust in the basic goodness of most people. I trust that most people don't do things for bad reasons. I typically believe what people tell me, provided I have not been given a compelling reason not to.

Some of that, I suspect, is a subconscious mask, and other parts probably come from a desire to be seen as perhaps less intelligent than I might truly be. This is part of who I have been and it is part of who I am.

There is, however, a deeper level of trust, and it is here I often fall down. I easily trust outward; I do not easily trust inward. I do not trust my own self - my responses, my thoughts, my intuitions or my beliefs. I do not trust that I will use the right skills at the right time. And this lack of inward trust does extend outward; because I do not trust that my responses or emotions might be valid and appropriate, because I do not trust that I have much value, I do not trust that others will see it in me indefinitely, either.

Tell me that you will be here, and I will believe that you believe that... but I will not trust that you will stick around. I still spend far more time than I am comfortable with 'knowing' that as much as you believe you aren't going anywhere, this could be the time I mess it up. This could be the time I say the wrong thing and you realise how much you are sick of having me in your life.

Frustratingly, this lack of trust is often cause and effect all by itself. And, as is the nature of things when one has no internal self trust I alternate between responses.

I hear "go away" when you say hi and I think you hate me, but I challenge what I have heard and seek reassurance. If you are not very clear when you say "go away", I will hear "go away" and think you hate me, but I will challenge what I have heard and convince myself it's all in my head. Sometimes I get it right and I even respond accordingly, but more often I do not. I cannot imagine how frustrating it must be for those on the receiving end of both wrong-answer scenarios.

To constantly reassure me must be terribly annoying. To constantly be trying to get a message across to me when I keep telling myself you're sending a different one, equally so. How can I blame anyone for getting tired of this endless battle? I cannot; I do not.

I need to learn how to trust myself, because until I understand which thoughts to trust and listen to; how to balance checking in with others and understanding that I am not responsible for, or at fault in, every situation and interaction I have, until I can learn and understand that... I will always live in fear and sadness and anticipation that this is the day you walk away.

And in the meantime, I need to draw on those other layers of trust that I do have, that I can rely on. I need to trust in that basic goodness that I believe is in most people, because I'm going to need it over the next few weeks. I need to trust that if people have a problem with me, they will tell me. I need to allow myself to trust those safe people in my life as much as I can, because if I don't, I am going to lose everything I have worked so hard to gain and be.

Cheerleading/Challenge Statements:
It's okay to trust that my friends will tell me clearly if they don't want me around.
I have the skills and the ability to live through everything that comes my way - whether it comes by chance or invitation.
I have the right to look after my needs and wants.

Take care of yourselves until next time, and may we all find our own small fences along the way. And of course, don't forget to blog your own version of Sanguine Saturday sometime this week and let me know so I can link you next Saturday! ;)

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Sanguine Saturday (It Still Counts, I Haven't Slept Yet!)

Wow. What a week. And of course I cap it off by almost forgetting to post my Sanguine Saturday post!

No new sanguine posts from outside of DD this week, guess everyone was too busy enjoying the Christmas season and enjoying themselves, to have time to post up some positives. ;) Get in on the wave of positivity this week and get bonus linkage to your blog by blogging your own version of Sanguine Saturday (or any other day of the week) and shoot me the URL before next Saturday!

Success Stories:
For the first time in a few years, I was sober enough to legibly type "Happy New Year" at the appropriate time.
Doing things to take care of myself after being triggered.
Being able to support some of my friends.
Making realisations about the way I sometimes do things.
Doing things to take care of my physical health.
Using my distractions appropriately, most of the time.
Challenging guilt trips placed on me by family.
Remaining calm while my mother lost her head after a call from my brother. (He was ill and called to ask her to come over. He's okay now.)

Gratitudes/things that make me happy:
New Millers giraffe PJs!
Giraffes. Always.
My friends, whose presence in my life is a precious gift.
Skyping with my friends.
Watching my mother's best friend open his present on boxing day. Priceless!

Challenge and cheer-leading statements:
A slip doesn't have to mean I stop trying.
Whatever I feel is okay, and it's okay to feel more than one thing at once.
I am not a bad person.
Just because I think something doesn't make it true. It's important to check the facts instead of making assumptions about what others are thinking or feeling.

Take care of yourselves until next time, and may we all find our own small fences along the way. And don't forget to blog your own version of Sanguine Saturday this week! ;)