Thursday, June 6, 2013

Teetering in my self discovery....

“When you have a sense of your own identity and a vision of where you want to go in your life, you then have the basis for reaching out to the world and going after your dreams for a better life.” -- Stedmen Graham

So I've already broken my promise to myself, to write daily.  I'm going to try not to give myself a guilt trip, because that's what I do.  Due to my own self critical mind, yesterday started off with a guilt trip and went spiraling downhill from there.

I wish I knew exactly the moment where everything went south for the day, and maybe it was the night before, when I was reading old blogs from over a year ago.  Actually, I think that's exactly what happened & when I was reading past posts, I couldn't believe how sad I sounded.  So, after crying over the past, I fell asleep and woke up with a headache and a crick in my neck.  No Bueno.  Not only that, but my special someone woke up with a migraine, so neither of us was off to a good start.  We said our goodbyes in a less then ordinary way, not as loving as usual, and that's when the guilt started to set in.  This guilt, led to a depressed state of near comatose, where I actually continued to lay in bed for another 3 hours.  Maybe I wouldn't have done that if I really needed to be somewhere. I had planned on meeting a friend for coffee, followed by some yoga, which I bailed on both and instead laid in my own misery until I was forced to get up at the last possible moment.  Guilt Guilt Guilt.  I know I do it to myself, I know it's happening and I know it's completely unreasonable, but my ego somehow thrives off of feeling sad.

Long story short, I sulked in my guilt all day until a friend called me out on it after work, by saying,"You're not happy," and that's when the tears started.  Darn tears.  Why am I crying?  I have no idea.  It's such a weird feeling when you really have no idea why you are upset.  Either way, it's times like these that I'm so grateful for the people that surround me.  I'm lucky and I know it.  After toying with the idea that I had control over our evening festivities, I decided on pizza, river gawking and ice cream with my two best man friends.

While we were sitting by the river I realized that a tree was covered with salmon fly larva skeletons, which gave me the creeps, but as I think about it now I realize how it's a metaphor.  How can a living thing change form so quickly? Yesterday I was a caterpillar, moving through life slowly, afraid of getting stepped on, and today I'm a butterfly emerging from a cocoon.  So cliche, I know, but how weird of a realization.  I feel great today.  It's as if I had to go through whatever that was yesterday, some sort of loss of control, in order to find a little bit more balance today....

Tears or no tears, sulking in my own misery or not, Josh (my special man lover) brought to my attention that I keep dwelling on how I was feeling a year ago, and he's exactly right.  I got so sucked into how I was feeling then, that I actually thought that it was "coming back" and it scared the hell out of me, when really, why would I feel like that right now?  My life has been doing nothing but getting better this past year.  My biggest obstacle now is my own mind, keeping it on track and reminding myself daily, not to dwell in the stormy past, but to soak up the sunshine that's coming my way.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Finding Balance

"Watch the sunrise at least once a year, put a lot of marshmallows in your hot chocolate, lie on your back and look at the stars, never buy a coffee table you can't put your feet on, never pass up a chance to jump on a trampoline, don't overlook life's small joys while searching for the big ones."
 -H. Jackson Brown Jr.

Hello again my long lost friends!  Or has it been myself who's been lost?  Either way, I've found myself on the other side of "crazy", now happy, yet feeling somewhat unbalanced.  Could it be true?  You find what you are looking for and then something else falls through the cracks? Who knows, but on my own life journey, I feel like I've made it through the current storm and now I just need to pick up the few remaining pieces.

I'm going to just throw this out there, in case the following words are awful.  I've started several blogs this past year and couldn't finish them enough to publish, so this one is getting put out there, regardless.  I think part of my writers block is the fear of people not responding positively to what I have to say.  I'm going to go ahead and knock that wall down, because it's blocking my path.

I know I've been gone for awhile, and who knows if anyone would really want to go back to reading my plain old blog, I'm no longer chasing some fairytale dream that involves a prisoner.  I'm no longer threatening to pack all my things and leave my home forever.  I feel a little more settled and I know I'm exactly where I belong.  It's a balance issue.  And in order to regain my balance, I'm going to go back to a few things that I've lost along the way, first off, my writing.

I've completely lost my drive to write, which is so weird, since I use to get so much from it.  I use to thrive from telling my stories of my monotonous life.  I also learned, from writing, how much other people could relate to the things that I say.  Maybe I need to put it all out there, word vomit about my life again, so that anyone who wants to, can see exactly what my life is made up of.  I think one of my biggest weaknesses is not being completely honest with who I am as a person.  I constantly worry about people judging me, when I know in my heart, my biggest critic is looking back at me in the mirror.

I've found, more and more, I'll catch glimpses of what other people must see when they cross paths with me.  Not a bad looking woman, in pretty decent shape for a early thirty year old.  A little young at heart and what seems to be a bit on the silly side, but fun to be around.  I saw at my recent shindig I threw for myself for my birthday, just how many different walks of life I could immerse myself in.  My friends are what make me who I am, and I've always known that I make them easily, and when they are all brought together, well, you would have had to be there, but I think they mixed as good as it could.

When I'm having a bad day, I look in the mirror and see this haggard face, tired eyes, out of shape, old body.  I hear myself say terrible terrible things.  I know it's not right, because when I'm having a good day, my image is so much different.  How can life feel so great one moment and then plummet to something so dark the next?  I'm still trying to find an answer to this question.

For those of you who have followed my blog in the past, I'm still not on anti depressants, and I still struggle to find my happiness from day to day, but refuse to fall back on modern day "happy pills" to help me.  I believe that we all have what we need on the inside, to be happy and fulfilled.  I took a good chunk of time off from working out, including my obsessive running.  I'm getting back into it again, but I do find myself tired some days, and am learning to listen to what my body is saying.  I was supposed to run 10 miles today, but I chose to take a nap, so far it feels like a relatively good decision, although, since I'm feeling like a chunky monkey, I knew a good long run would shock that right out of me, but that's okay.  There's always tomorrow and Yoga is happening in the a.m.

I am proud to say that I did make it one year without alcohol.  I almost said one year sober, but my mother would disagree with the whole "sober" claim, since I did find myself using a little green substance about 9 months in to my sobriety, which I now give a little credit to some relief in anxiety.  Either way, I made my one year  without alcohol, and for someone who had been drinking half her life, I'd say it was a pretty solid goal to achieve.  This being said, I have proclaimed to stop drinking again, at least for 30 days.  I promise to be completely sober for the next month.

Why am I telling you this?  Well because I feel like I need to put it out there so that I'm held responsible.  And my reasoning for "sobering" up aren't what you are thinking.  No, I haven't fallen off the wagon again.  I don't drink away my sorrows, since I really don't have much to be sorry for.  I'm in a healthy relationship that has gotten a little too comfortable for me.  15 pounds worth.  GRRRRRRRRRRR  Those darn vanity pounds are back, and I swear to god that I'm going to gain control over this.  It's a little silly and vain, but I've found myself feeling so terrible about myself and it's all because my shorts don't fit and I feel like I have a muffin top.  Why is it so hard to be female?  All I want is to love myself in the way that I know I deserve to be loved.  I know that until I find control and balance over this struggling self image issue, I wont be the best partner/spouse to someone, or the best parent I could be, and at this point in my life I think about that A TON.

That's enough to chew on for awhile.  I'm going to try my best to write every day in order to keep myself accountable.  So for today, day 1, it's been a good carbo-loading-day-off-from-work sort of day.  Listening to the rain out my window and contemplating where my life was one year ago, two years ago.  Whew.  Things have changed and I have allot to be grateful for.

Monday, June 25, 2012


Wow! Has it really almost been a month since my last blog?? Time really does fly when you are having fun. I honestly logged on here thinking that it had only been a couple weeks. Whoopsies.

Without further ado..... My thoughts....

First, a question. When you view the picture below. What do you see? A freshly mowed lawn? Or a freshly PARTIALLY mowed lawn....  That's a toughie.

This is one of many narotic tendancies I'm starting to see that my father has. His obsessive lawn mowing has gotten a little out of hand lately, but since I hadn't mowed the lawn in about a week, I did what he asked, for a bit of exercise..... Don't worry dad, I'll finish it tomorrow, but really, has the grass grown that much? He seems to think that we need to mow twice a week. My GOD!

As I walked across the street to fill the gas can, because, yet again, I'm left with no gas, I tell myself, "I forgive you, I forgive you," over and over in my head. This is a little trick that my therapist taught me, which has helped me with SOOOO many things. It's funny how forgiving someone, even silently in your thoughts, makes things better, or funnier, whatever way you want to take it. A friend suggested that I start forgiving people outloud, but I think I forgive my family so much that they might be more annoyed by me then they already are.

I had to forgive my father earlier today, when he wouldn't come save his favorite daughter after her car wouldn't start. Excuse me, but isn't that what dads are for? Helping their kids when silly shit happens? All I know is he was the first person I called, and I now realize I can't depend on him when he's "busy" (at an auction, spending money). When I teased him about it tonight, my mom responded by saying that they were just trying to let me be independent.

I forgive you mom, and I'll swallow my pride next time you're stranded, because we both know the odds are it might happen some day. I love you!

I wrote that little segment above about five days ago and after this weekend, I feel kind of like a different person. Let's just say, in a nutshell, since there are allot of things that not everyone needs to know about my past, I'm realizing that the one person I need to forgive, is myself. I've done some really awful things in my life, but that doesn't mean that I'm a terrible person, and that's starting to become clear to me. A belief that I've held on to for years is that since I clearly don't have respect for others, at times, I must not be deserving of being respected and living the best life possible. Screw that belief. I don't know why I've been saying that to myself this whole time.

After this recent self-revelation, I decided it might be in my best interest to clear everything up with a man that I love dearly. We may have had to take a step back to being "just friends", but a part of me has been missing since we completely stopped communicating, and I realized yesterday that it was because I hadn't felt like I had been completely honest with him, so I changed that. What I got in return was the purest form of kindness and respect that I've ever recieved from anyone. I now know that I deserve to have people in my life that make me feel good, but I need to return the favor. If either of us can't do that, then we probably weren't meant to be friends in the first place.

Wow. That feels so good to say out loud. As I'm sitting here on my deck, enjoying some coffee on a Monday morning, I feel at peace. Now how do I bottle this up and carry it with me through life? I think for me, it's not internalizing all the things that I'm ashamed of. I keep saying that I need to learn from life's mistakes and I think I'm finally able to wrap my head around what exactly that means to me.  For me, it's understanding what I did wrong, forgiving myself, and as I move on, I leave it behind in the dust. If I can let these mistakes teach me a lesson and let them go, I will continue to propel upward and onward with my life. So with no regrets, I perservere, on this crazy journey of mine, trying my best to never look back.
The view from my deck.  Who wouldn't be envious of this?

Have a wonderful week!

Monday, May 28, 2012


It's either all or nothing -- Gene Senne (my father)
I usually have some cleaver quote, but with today's blog I realize that I don't have one that I can really relate to what I want to write about.   It was something my dad said yesterday that struck my core.  I don't think that's even the exact quote, I wish I could remember what it was, but you get the gist of it.  My father is famous for his little sayings, "don't sweat the small stuff, and it's all small stuff."  His view on life is a little bit different then mine, which, I'm learning, is totally okay and fine.  I think I only started to realize a few years ago, that my daddy isn't always right.  He might believe what he is saying or doing is the best way, the right way, but not necessarily the best or right way for me.  So, I'm learning to not take what he says as my own identity, but something that he probably thinks is in my best interest, and go with that.

I don't know what my direction is today, but I found myself listening to my Dido station on Pandora, which is what I do when I really want to find my feminine side, and the song "Torn" by Natalie Imbrulia came on.  I associate songs with different times in my life.  I never realized this until lately, seriously, I'm having some sort of awakening here, I am, but as I listened to this song, I started to go back to being 16, and heart broken for the very first time.  I'm not sure why heartache is so painful, even when the person clearly isn't the right one for you, but it hurts.  It's the most painful thing in the world, and I think that's why so many of us settle for less, because we don't want to endure the pain again.  The magical thing is, if you suffer through it, and try to learn about yourself in the process, your future will continue to get brighter and brighter.  I'm now seeing this for the very first time.  What I have done in the past is cry about it, and ask whatever this higher being may be, "what is wrong with me?"  Why am I not loveable.....

Therapy has been really really good for me.  I'm having all sorts of epiphanies lately, which is totally awesome and amazing.  I missed my normal therapy date two weeks ago, and instead had an extreme public meltdown in Billings while I was with the Special Olympics for the state games.  As you've seen in the past, when I cry, I don't exactly look my best.  I can hear my inner voice telling me how ugly I get when I cry.  And of course, what I took for the reason that I cried (which I later realized was much much deeper) was something completely out of my control that I wont be able to change, EVER, and I need to accept that.  I'll just give you a quick rundown of what happened. I'm sure most of you know this, but my older brother, Shad, is autistic and has some issues when it comes to eating.  He's usually really easy, if you feed him what he wants, which is McDonald's and Pizza, washed down with a whole lot of soda, chips and cookies.  I cringe when he picks out the donut with bright blue frosting because I know that there is nothing good in that donut.  I wouldn't eat it, and the fact that there is a very unnatural neon color coating the top, just makes it worse.  I'm a very clean eater about 75% of the time, you can't help it really when you eat out or are traveling, so I cut myself some slack. I try not to push my own beliefs of eating organic on to other people, but I've been trying to sneak it in with my brother.

This past winter, I've been working so hard at getting something good in that 34 year old body of my brother's.  I worry about his health, I worry about his future, and what years of eating more bad then good has in store for him.  We spent most saturdays, trying something new and organic, I watched him make faces, spit it out and even be very sneaky and throw it away when I wasn't looking, but I really felt like we were making progress.  When we were in Billings, I spent the first day, stressing over the fact that he wouldn't eat.  He skipped breakfast completely, even though there were things there that he would eat.  Lunch time came and he refused to gag down the ham and cheese sandwich, just settling for a bag of chips and a cookie.  I managed to find him some food at the bowling alley, nothing healthy of course and magically, dinner that night was a burger.  We had survived the day!

Unfortunately, the next day wasn't as successful.  I don't have time to watch every athlete, and there are a few that need extra attention, so I honestly have no idea if Shad ate breakfast that day.  He's so independent in so many ways, that I took it for granted, I guess.  Another frustrating thing, is I've been told several times now, that Shad will eat whatever is available on Special Olympic trips, when I'm not there.  I feel a little resentment towards him.  Is that little bastard manipulating me?  I refuse to let that happen.  So, dinner rolls around, and it was steak.  Shad HATES steak.  Why?  I have no idea.  My mom is convinced that he can't swallow it, and maybe that is a true fact, but it's hard for me to believe this, since he can down a cheeseburger in two bites, without chewing. I now know, for the future, to pack a bottle of ketchup, because that would have probably prevented what happened, you live and learn, right?  The city that hosts special olympics, provides dinner at least one or two of the nights we are there, so this night we went to a very nice sit down dinner at the food bank.  Having steak is also pretty unheard of, usually it's something easy, like spaghetti, which is a whole different mess, but everyone will eat it.  Anyways, I'm wandering off here.  I was sitting at a different table, and I could see Shad perfectly.  He wasn't eating.  I got up and walked over to him.  We discussed if he was hungry, and he was, so I cut the steak into little pieces and asked him to take a few bites.  He started to gag it down, which if you've seen it, it's gross.  I just gag by hearing it.  So we stopped again, and I tried to talk about how we were going to do this.  Wash it down with water, okay?  He seemed to understand.  I give him too much credit, I do, so when I went and sat back down, I continued to keep an eye on him and saw him, first hand, throw his food back up at the table.

Are you effing kidding me?  I got back up and walked back over there.  At that point I didn't have anything left to say.  I told him to stop, he stopped, and I went and sat back down.  That's when I realized that I will NEVER be able to fix this.  Never.  Instead of letting it go, and reminding myself that there is a higher power that will take care of Shad, I told myself that I wasn't good enough to fix him, that if I couldn't fix him, how the HELL was I going to fix myself.  I lost it, and public cry number #1,256 began, in a room full of friends, strangers, and Special Olympics atheletes.  FML.

I pulled myself together, called my mom and my sister, talked it out.  I felt like I was okay.  I joined our team again as they walked back out to the bus and was suddenly surrounded by some athletes.  They are so pure hearted and I realized that I was exactly where I was supposed to be, they swarmed me like a bunch of mother hens, giving me hugs and asking me if I was okay.  I've always thought I was taking care of them, and I now know that they take care of me.  I know that I am accepted by them.  I think that's always been a fear of mine, being accepted for who I am and where I come from.  I grew up being so embarrassed by my brother.  I know that he has made me who I am, and that I am a good person because of him.  I spent the rest of the night crying off and on.  I would stop and then someone would be so genuine when they asked how I was and I'd start it all over again.  I was a red hot mess, but I was happy to be there.  Such a special moment.

The very long, and very rewarding, trip ended that Friday, and I went home, super exhausted, but so grateful that I had gone.  I feel like a part of myself opened up on that trip, part of me that had gotten lost is back.  I say that now, today, but right after the trip I slowly started to spiral back down that black hole.  Down down down.  I've been so confused about life. What I want, is the easy way, I want someone to tell me what the fuck to do.  I've been contemplating moving, or as a few have called it, running away.  Actually, now that I think about it, I call it that even, jokingly, but I know it's really what it is.  I toy with the idea of being free.  Free from the hold of the puppet master (my dad) who has the very best of intentions for me, but doesn't see that what makes him happy doesn't necessarily bring me happiness.  Free from everyone who thinks they need to tell me what I'm doing wrong, free to think on my own.

I went to see Betty (my therapist) on Wednesday, so ready to feel better.  My expectations for these sessions has turned into a tool to feel imediately better.  I was sure I was going to go in there, tell her my problems and leave feeling like I owned the world.  She let the session go longer then normal and when I put my jacket on, she asked how I was feeling.  I broke down.  Those GOD DAMNED TEARS.  As I sobbed uncontrollably, I told her that I felt like I was where I started a month ago.  Why do I feel this way?  She had asked me earlier if I had ever had thoughts about hurting myself and I lied. Straight up lied to her about it, and I'm not sure why, because I've been honest with everything else.  Does it make me weak to have thoughts that it might be an easy way out?  I also have thoughts that I have people, who I love, that I would never do that to.  That me giving up on life, would not only affect myself, but so many people around me.  This is why I don't drink, why I don't have guns in my house and why I hate pills.  I know myself.  I also know that I'm a strong woman, and I will perservere.

Betty reassured me that I was exactly where I needed to be and I wanted to believe her, but I couldn't even face the world.  I went home and locked myself in my room for almost 20 hours.  It was as if I was in mourning and I finally was able to let go of so many things that I had been holding on to.  Guilt.  Unneccesary guilt.  I hold on to guilt for no reason.  I use to do that in my marraige, which obviously pushed us apart and I can now see myself doing it with Eric.  That's completely unhealthy and I need some me time.  It's taken me 31 years to finally come to terms.  Guess what?  I come first.

So this is me.  My name is Kristal Rae.  People really close to me call me Kris, which is probably the most endearring thing to me, because it reminds me of my grandfather.  I associate that name with a person I felt very close to but never had the chance to get to know very well.  I like terrible music and I dance to the beat of my own drum.  I think I've been struggling with that.  I try so hard to fight the fact that I am a little different.  My sister is known for telling me that I'm not dressed my age.  Who cares?  I've also been told that I don't look my age, and I take that as a compliment.  I'm very slowly but surely realizing that I might just be beautiful, on the inside and on the outside.  I believe that you look as good as you feel.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Small Victories

"Your journey has molded you for your greater good, and it was exactly what it needed to be. Don't think that you've lost time.  It took each and every situation you have encountered to bring you to now. Now is right on time."

 I may have posted that quote before, but it sits on my dresser where I can see it everyday.  I have it as a reminder that I'm exactly where I'm supposed to be.  There's no rush to get anywhere, I'll get there in time.

So, I suppose I should start this blog with my trip to the doctors office on Monday.  I have had a feeling, many times, that people are brought into my life for a specific reason.  Lately it's for the support that I need to get through this point in my life, which has turned into a deep hole that I cannot get out of, without some help.  I have found close friends in the most unusual ways, someone who I just had a feeling about, so I finally got the courage to ask her to go grab coffee, an unsuspecting friend of a friend, who needed a place to stay for a few months. You never know who might walk into your life, at the exact right time. There's also those people who you always felt a connection with, but maybe it wasn't the right time until now, or the classmate that you were never really friends with, but suddenly you are drawn together because you can relate to one another and understand each others pain.  There's many many more, and both my new therapist and Dr. Josh are no exception.  They're not just your average doctor or psychologist, they are the RIGHT ones for me.

I'm calling this doctor, Dr. Josh.  He's just too good looking and young to be called by his last name, but like that matters, I can't even remember his last name.  I knew going into the appointment that he was attractive, because my friend warned me to "shave my legs".  I'll admit, it's a little intimidating to go into an appointment, knowing you have the potential of breaking down in tears in front of a hot doctor.  Not the way I want to spend my emotional meltdown, but what other choice do I have?  I had to have an answer to my question.  I knew in my heart that I would be unable to move forward with my life if I ignored how I was feeling.  What is wrong with me?  Why am I so tired?  It must be something!  Right?  That's what I kept telling myself.....

After much anticipation, Dr. Josh comes in and introduces himself.  I'll be honest, he's good looking, but he's not my type. He's not much taller than me, with dark hair and skin (I'm starting to see why this certain friend thought he was so hot....).  I'm learning that I much prefer tall men, that weigh twice as much as me, with freckles, but that's just me, I like feeling small and I think freckles are cute, what can I say?  He sits down at his computer and looks at my wellness lab that I had done the Friday before as we talk about what's going on with me. I'd been feeling tired, unmotivated and lethargic at times.  This had been getting progressively worse when I had been exercising, I would be completely exhausted for the rest of the day and quite frankly, I was frustrated.  

So you all want to know what happened right?  I was SURE, completely confident, that it was one of several options; a thyroid malfunction, low iron, anemia, or low vitamin D.  Something with a title and an easy fix.  There was no doubt in my mind and actually, the last email I had received from my boyfriend had said something in the sense of, "are you going to be okay if you don't get the answer you are looking for?"  Sure, I thought to myself, because it will be some sort of "fixable" answer.  

Here it is!  Finally!  The diagnosis was, there was nothing physically wrong with me.  


Doctor Josh thoroughly explained my results, everything looked normal, except for my iron, which was actually high because I don't have much of a menstrual cycle.  I know, this is probably too much information, I guess high iron is alright, but because I exercised so frequently, I had almost no period anymore, and that's not exactly good.  It was about this time that I started to feel it coming on, those dreaded tears.  For the few of you who haven't gotten the pleasure of witnessing it first hand, it all starts with a quivering of my lip as I try to stay strong and hold it all in.  There is no need to cry, and I am well aware of it.  I actually don't really care about crying in public anymore, I just hate how I look afterwords.  It's not pretty.  I call it my "cry face" (see photo from last weeks blog).  As the uncontrollable tears started to leak from my eye sockets,  Dr. Josh began asking me what was going on in my life.  I had no intention of giving him the details of my destructive behavior, this was not my idea of a doctors appointment, but I guess when you flat out tell them upfront, "people keep saying I'm depressed but I REFUSE to take medicine for it," they sometimes use a different approach.  So I told him, pretty much everything.  Somehow I keep leaving the part out where my boyfriend is in prison.  I think I try to protect him because I have had so many negative responses to it.  No one understands our connection but us, and that's fine.  Needless to say, I didn't mention him at all until the doctor asked if I was in a relationship.  BUSTED.  Poor Doctor Josh, it was like playing twenty questions, because I wasn't real sure what he was looking for.  I told him about the divorce, my car accident, not drinking.  What else did he want?  When I finally had it all laid out on the table for him, he told me that I had absolutely every reason to be feeling this way.

It's like in an instant, I was validated for my feelings and suddenly I didn't feel like there was something seriously wrong with me.  I think deep down inside I always knew that I'd been dealing with depression, maybe for far longer then I'm really ready to admit.  I needed to have evidence that it wasn't something else, and now I'm willing to accept it and to finally take the steps I need to destroy this dark cloud, hopefully, for good.

I've witnessed too many people deal with depression.  I'm tired of seeing drugs not working, or working half the time and I'm going to be proof that you do not need it. You'll see.  I've always been a firm believer that through healthy behaviors you can have a healthy mind and body.  I think my body was finally telling me to stop, because I was using running as a tool to keep years and years of underlying pain at a stand still, and I now need to deal with it in order to have that amazing life that I'm striving for.

Doctor Josh also gave me the confidence that I needed to believe that I can feel better.  He said if I decided to try meds, I'd have to deal with any side effects.  It may be a quicker fix, but not the only way.  He was happy to hear that I was in therapy, but said I should have probably been in therapy right after my car accident, I guess there's a good chance I've been dealing with PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) from it, which makes complete sense to why little tasks have been so freaking difficult.  I bounced back like I had scraped my knee when, in fact, I nearly killed myself, but somehow managed to walk away from it with barely a scratch.  My angels (I'm pretty sure they are my grandparents) were watching me that night, it was not my time to go.  I must have a purpose :)

I walked out of his office, all cry faced, but feeling very hopeful.  I think there was an internal sigh of relief, because I now recognize that I've been depressed, it's not some sort of silly iron deficiancy, and I'm now ready to face it whole heartedly.

I know I have allot of work cut out for me.  I still have had bad "moments" where my whole body goes numb and I get this overwhelming feeling that I'm not good enough, but honestly, ever since I let it all out last week, I generaly feel so much better.  Maybe it's the amount of support I now realize I have, or the fact that I now know of people who are going through the same exact "feelings" that I have had and it's completely normal.  I'm learning that depression is more real then I ever thought it to be, and is in NO way a sign of weakness.  I think acknowledging it is such a strength in itself.  I'm also starting to learn that much of my problems have been self induced.  There's allot of negative self talk that I've been doing pretty much my entire life, without ever realizing it.  Not good enough, I don't fit in, I'm not pretty enough.  I don't even like admitting to some of the things that I say to myself.  I think I carry allot of guilt.  I feel guilty for everything.  Anyone not notice that I apologize when it's not my fault?  I do that all the time.  

Today was a test for me.  I went for a mile run and had to torture myself with praise.  Normally I would say how a mile was NOTHING and never good enough, I was probably going to get fat from only running a mile, blah blah, negative, yuck. I actually felt WONDERFUL after my run, and I had a ton of energy.  I can't remember ever feeling that good after only running a mile, but if I can feel that awesome after just one mile, why would I ever run 20?  JUST KIDDING!  But for now, I'm toning it down, listening to my body and taking easy.  Dr. Josh's advice was to pay attention to how I'm feeling.  He said I'd feel better eventually, but I needed to have a little perspective, and it takes time.  He suggested, instead of focusing on how I wanted to feel tomorrow, I should focus on where I want to be in 6 months and everything else will fall into place.  He also told me that I'll have good days and bad days, and on the bad days, where I feel like staying in bed all day, I should just stay in bed, but to always remember that this feeling isn't forever.

Gosh, I feel like there is so much more that I want to share, but I know this is getting long, so I'm going to come to some sort of a closure here.  Thank YOU everyone who responded with emails, text messages, and phone calls.  I feel so loved and blessed to have such amazing people in my life.  I must be doing something right.

For now, I'm working on enjoying those little moments that make me feel happy, that bring me joy.  Being in bed at night, with my babies (aka two dogs and two cats - yes, usually all of them) snuggled close to me, having a significant other who completely supports my decision to kick this wall down in the way I feel will work for me and allowing me to cry to him on a near daily basis.  Today's big moments were assembling a closet system all by myself, and the fact that I went on a short run and didn't allow myself to feel guilty for not going farther.  These are all small victories for me and they help me move forward to the next hour, next day, next week, next month and hopefully, to the years to come.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Pain Makes People Change

The things that we go through in our lives teach us lessons for the betterment of the rest of our lives, if we choose to learn from them. Pain makes us change, sometimes for good and sometimes the worse. In order to get over our addictions and faults in life we must endure pain most times to do so, but in the end, if we fight through the pain that we experience and don't cave, we will achieve the change in ourselves that we desire.
Do not be scared of pain, but instead, endure it. Do not let pain deter you from the course in life that you want to take. Remember that pain is necessary in life and in order to change who you are, you must experience some pain. Continue to push on, through pain and through the discomfort, never let pain make you stop, instead use it as motivation to keep pushing forward.   -Unknown

I haven't written in awhile.  I've completely lost my desire to write, and it's something I've always enjoyed, but I cant seem to form written words these days.  I feel like I'm uninteresting.  Who would want to read this?  I think I've been keeping a secret. I've been in denial for a long long time about a trait that I've inherited from both sides of the family and the only way to heal, in my mind, is to let it all out.

I'm depressed.

Who isn't, right?  That's what I've always told myself, you're no worse then anyone else, everyone has had a rough day.  But when you've been sad, do you think about the loaded gun that used to be under your bed or consider driving off of the road on purpose, because I do.  Recently, I was cleaning the bottom drawers out of my bathroom vanity, and I found a bottle of sleeping pills, which I immediately threw out.  I'll be honest, I'm afraid of what I'm capable of doing to myself.  What I do know, is that, no matter how bad it gets, the last thing I want is to die.  I figured that one out as I as hanging upside down in my car last summer.  I remind myself of that feeling often.

Before I go on, I just want anyone reading this to know, I don't expect a bunch of sympathy, I don't want to get some magic phone call from a long lost friend who suddenly "cares about my life". I've been blessed with having a supportive family and good friends, they know who they are.  I'm using this as a tool to help me heal.  While I'm directly talking to my audience, I'd also like to send out a plead to you, please set up a google account and "follow" me.  I do enjoy knowing who is reading this.  I get a large amount of feedback when I see people, and I'm often surprised.  There's a good chance that I will eventually make my blog "private", so this will make it so you can still view it, without any problems.  I want to make sure I'm not crazy....  I've had 10,000 page views in less then a year, could it just be spam?  I have no idea.  All I know, is my ego feeds off the fact that people are reading the crap that I write, and I thrive off of it, meaning, I'll want to write more.  So do you like hearing about my life?  Does it make you feel normal?  I think you get the point.

Okay, back to my overly depressing blog.

As most of you know, I use humor to avoid uncomfortable silences or awkwardness.  I don't know if it works, but it's always been what I do to make myself feel better.  That being said, this is why most of you never saw this coming.  I can't tell you the amount of pain I've been in, or for how long I've been in it even, because I don't even know the answer to that.  I started counseling last week, and what I'm discovering is that I've pushed down my pain for years, probably starting as a child, and it's all beginning to surface now.  It's a black tar in my chest, that I'm trying to permanently get rid of, so here goes.

I think it started to surface when I quit drinking 8 months ago.  Seriously.  I must have been using alcohol to numb the pain, but now that's gone, what do I have left?  Of course, running has been the way I've dealt with stress for the past 3 or 4 years, and now that has come to a sudden halt as well.  My body no longer has energy to deal with much exercise.  I had been aware that I wasn't feeling as awesome as I usually do, after a normal workout.  Over time, the intensity of my workouts got harder, the workouts got longer.  A four mile run, didn't cut it, it didn't give me the endorphin high that I'm now realizing I'm very much ADDICTED to.  6 miles wasn't enough, it was turning into 8, 9, 10 miles that I had to run in order to "feel normal".  A few months ago, I started noticing, that yes, I felt good when I finished (emotionally and mentally), but I was absolutely exhausted.  I'd spend the remainder of my day sitting on my couch and crying because I had no energy.  That seems counter productive, right?  So, I shortened my workouts.  Of course, I wasn't getting my "runners high" feeling at all, but I thought maybe I'd have more energy, NOPE.

I eat well.  I've paid attention to my body and I feed it what it craves.  Yes I drink lots of water, I eat red meat, plenty of protein, vegetables and fruit.  I thrive on the fact that I'm allowed to eat more carbs when I work out harder, but still, no energy.  I even started reading a book on the importance of vitamins and the essential nutrients that your body needs.  Ask my sister, I was a crazy pill taking fanatic for awhile.  It worked, for like a month, but the eventually, I was back where I started.  Lethargic, no energy, hating life.  It's like I've been running from something that has slowly been creeping up on me, and it's finally caught up.

Drum roll please......  I'm depressed.  Waaaaaa.

I also really enjoy crying in public (insert sarcastic tone here).  This year I've cried in my car, in grocery stores, alone on the airplane, in public restrooms, hallways of buildings, walking down the street, during runs even.  I've even started crying in front of people who are unaware that I "like" to cry, making them feel uncomfortable.  I've always been a leaky faucet, but this is getting intense.  I don't know where I'm going with the crying thing, and I feel like I need to make a point to this blog and finish it off before you get bored, so here it is....

I finally said,  "ENOUGH!"  I want to know what is happening here.  I'm ready to move on and make my life the greatest it can be.  My plans are this, I started therapy last week, which made me feel empowered and awesome, for about an hour, but that's progress, right?  I've completely cut exercise out of my routine until I get some serious blood work done, and that is all happening tomorrow.  Not exercising is taking a tole on my sanity and self esteem.  I feel like a fat ass everyday and obsessively weigh myself, but I don't think there is much I can do until I know what's wrong with me. When I was working out, I was taking 3 hour naps and sleeping for 10 hours at night, therefore, I wasn't getting anything done.  Exercise is at a temporary halt.  I keep telling myself that.  It's hard to put it on hold though, when you are an emotional eater.

 Before I really sign on to the "I'm depressed" band wagon, I want to make sure it's not just something completely silly, like low iron or a thyroid dysfunction.  Maybe I have mono.  I have no idea, but I think there might be something going on, on top of hating my life so bad I feel like ending it some days.  I don't need to be hospitalized.  I am rational enough to know that my thoughts, are just thoughts from that internal dialog that seems to think it's running my life, but it's not.  The good news is, I don't use drugs or drink any more, so hopefully this is my window of opportunity to help myself.  I do have a problem with being medicated for this illness, which I think is why I've been suffering for so long.  I keep trying to do everything on my own, in order to "fix this".  Exercise was always my way out of the pain, and right now, it's not an option, which freaks me out.  Therapy it is!

Within five minutes of talking to my new therapist, she mentioned that it sounded like I'm depressed.  What a horrible title, being depressed.  When you hear someone is depressed, don't you immediately feel sorry for them?  Their life is so bad that they can't hardly get out of bed in the morning.  Well I'll admit to you (and maybe this is why I have such a hard time believing that I'm depressed), on the outside, it doesn't look like I have anything to be sad about, right?  Life is good.  Bueno!  But no, there's something more to it.  I feel, if I don't resolve my inner problems, this deep dark pain I've got going on, I'll never be happy about anything.  That's hard for me to swallow, because, as you know, I'M A HAPPY PERSON!  You could run into me today, and I'd smile and act like everything is okay, because it is, but as soon as I'm alone, with time to myself, I go to a very dark place, where I hate myself, I self loath and pick apart all of the little bits of myself that I don't like.  I know I have good qualities, and I'm a good person, I'm relatively attractive, and in good shape.  Now I feel like I'm being vain.  See?  You are witnessing my inner dialogue coming out in written words as we speak.  This is what I'm dealing with, and I'm starting to get the feeling, I'm not the only one who has this issue.

This is so weird to me.  I haven't had the motivation to blog in almost two months, and suddenly I get the strength to do it.  Where did that come from?  My therapist asked me what it was that made me happy.  I was having a hard time figuring that out, and when I gave her an unsure answer, it had nothing to do with writing.  This morning, I was laying on the floor, waiting for my youtubed yoga class to "rebuff".  I stared at the smoke from the incense that I was burning, trying to will it to give me some sort of shape, some sort of insight to what I'm supposed to be doing with my life.  I honestly thought to myself, if I were high, I'd be seeing something right now.  Of course, there were no smoke signals, because that would be too easy, but as I laid there, trying to think about what really, truly makes me happy, it finally came to me, writing.  And here I am.

This isn't a cry out for help.  That happened already, that's why I'm in therapy, getting blood work done, seeing a doctor, and looking for signs in the smoke.  This is merely me, telling you, that I think we all go through similar problems.  Maybe your life is way better then mine, great.  Use this as a tool to boost your own ego.  But, maybe there are a few of you who are going through your own struggles.  I just want to let you know, you're not alone.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Am I Running In Circles???

"The world can be amazing when you are slightly strange" 

I'm feeling a little frazzle dazzled and spastic lately.  I'm not sure what has gotten into me and I'm not sure where I'm heading, but for the first time in a long while, I'm kind of okay with it.  I still don't like the idea of the unknown, but something has changed.  Maybe I'm finally moving towards my destiny.  I'm a firm believer of that, by the way, so just deal if you disagree with my theories.  You don't have to read this if you chose to be a hater.

Why don't we agree to disagree?

Have you ever had that day, where you find yourself alone, and chattering away, laughing at a conversation you had via email with your prisoner boyfriend.  No?  Okay, that's just me....  I also caught myself doing a spontaneous karate kick for no reason, again, alone.  I didn't realize it was weird until my co-worker mentioned my dancing-toe-tapping that I was doing while I was talking about something.  Maybe I'm just really really happy.  

It's not maybe.  I'm really super happy.  I hope this lasts.

About a month ago, I felt as low as I've felt.  I know it has allot to do with the weather (aka lack of sunshine) and I've been missing Eric more and more, but I'm okay.  These are steps that I believe I have to make in order to become the woman that I want to be. 

But, the biggest question of all is, what do I want to do with my life?  Does anyone else find it wildly unacceptable that a woman at the age of NEARLY 31, still has no idea.  I feel like I might be on the verge of something.....  just teetering on the edge between good enough and something great.  I'm in the search for greatness.

I would also like to personally gloat about my run last week.  My friend Mandy and I joined in the 7 mile "Run for the luck of it".  It's an amazing feeling when you set out on the run with a ten minute mile goal and finish in just over an hour, averaging 8:47 minute miles.  

Say what?

Maybe this great feeling is the after burn of accomplishing something I never thought possible.  Consistently running under 9 minute miles.  Me?  No way.  I'm not a runner.....

That's all I have to say.

Until next time......