Pilgrim's Journey > December 2005 Archives
December 8, 2005
stress causing more dissociation
This week has been difficult. There are several things at home and at work that are causing stress in addition to some new things going on inside our head. Not sleeping much either. It gets into a viscious cycle pretty quickly. Everything gets mixed together then-- stress, headaches, dissociating, not eating, not sleeping, getting more tired, more stress, more switching... and on and on. Thats how the past 10 days has been and its just wearing all of us down.
On Tuesday Mae told our therapist some really intense things that many of us dont want to admit to or face. Some things are really just better left in the past. And wish they would stay buried there. I'm sure that therapeutically its a wonderful thing that these things are coming out. But it doesnt feel so good in the middle of the night when Mae is waking up crying and none of us adults can get her calmed down.
On a positive note, my sister asked if she could get a Christmas present for Mae, and that is just so encouraging. We always get lots of kids' presents for Christmas anyway but this year there will be one just for Mae and she is really looking forward to that.
December 10, 2005
Losing weight, and how we all see ourselves
Some good news.
I'm happy to report that I've lost a couple pounds and fit into a pair of jeans that I haven't been able to for a while. The meds I'm on make me lose my appetite. Not the best when you're in recovery from an eating disorder, and my treatment team isn't ever thrilled when I lose weight, but at least I'M happy with something for a change.
Its interesting how each of us inside view ourselves. I dont know if I can quite explain it. The younger kids, of course, look and feel younger. One of the ways I can tell that they are about to come to the front is that I begin to physically feel shorter. My fingers start to not work right, like I can't control them. I stumble more (its really embarassing). Things around me start to look like they are higher, like it looks like I can't reach up to get things out of the cupboards. Mae feels like she has a round tummy. Blue feels smaller and skinnier. Tuck physically feels like a boy...um...if you get my drift.
Among those of us who are older, Jo feels really fat like I do. Fat thighs, stomach, hips, arms, everything. We see ourselves as very fat. But Missy is thinner. She sees herself as in control of everything in her life, including her food, so of COURSE she would never have overeaten in the 1st place, and so naturally, she sees herself as naturally thin. Some of us are taller. Some of us can't see ourselves in the mirror and some won't even look.
And me... I have no idea what I look like. I can't even tell.
December 14, 2005
Managing willful ( stubborn!) children, and switching problems
And no, I'm not talking about the children in my class, although right now, this post could be about them as well. What I'm talking about right now is the kids inside who are frustrating us adults AND our therapist at this point!
I'm not at all sure what happened in tonight's session, but I do know that Mae was upset, anxious, and angry. It had something to do with notes that our therapist had written down, Mae had given her specific names of who "the bad people" were and I guess didn't want them recorded, but T wrote them down anyway because she has to. Well Mae through a fit over that. In our lives its never been safe to have anything written down. Our parents have tended to snoop. A lot. As in digging through the trash can in my bedroom and taping together pieces of paper that I have torn up to see what I've been writing. So something that Mae and I always do is NEVER leave anything specific written down, in case any of the "bad people" find it. When we do write things down and show our T, Mae then tears it up and puts it in the fireplace afterwards. Which is exactly where everything went tonight, as well.
But I think that Mae was really upset tonight in therapy. I know she had a lot of energy built up inside, I think she was mad at everyone,
possibly had some cross words with our T.
So tired of this. Yah, she's 5. I know. But its just hard to deal with a perpetual 5 year old. She is so willful and stubborn. We know she wants to do everything on her own. Us adults offer to help but she doesn't want it. However, thats what we all had to do when I was little--- it was every man for himself in our house. My sister and I were taught early on to not rely on anyone else to meet your needs, that you had to take care of yourself. So no wonder Mae is doing the same thing.
The problems come when its time to leave a session and go home, and Mae refuses (or just can't do it) to let a grown up take over and get her home. So she leaves T's office still upset and a bundle of nervous energy having flashbacks and wanting to hurt herself and generally not safe, T hates it when she leaves like that, and Mae can't figure out how to let an adult take over. (It involves being able to relax your mind and your muscles and your thoughts, and sort of ...disappearing...going inside...and letting someone else 'in front of you' . For some it is easy, and even a relief to do-- a chance to escape. But for Mae, she resists it, and says she hates being "pushed under". But it is causing real problems, because she's often left on her own with no adult supervision, when she needs to have one of us around to help her calm down, cook her lunch,get her to bed calmly, and deal with feelings safely.
I'm trying to think of a strategy that will work to encourage her. So far we have tried so many things-- rewards, consequences, praise, getting in trouble, you name it. There has got to be something that will work.
December 17, 2005
D.I.D. support group
i am not going back to group anymore. i can't take it.
i dont have the money for gas to drive half an hour into another city to sit there and listen to the same people talk about the same thing month after month after month. everyone there talks about problems with social security and being on disability. Its a two hour long group, and at each group, I've noticed that about 15-20 minutes is actually spent discussing D.I.D-related issues. Out of 2 hours. I wish one of the therapists would guide group a little bit. Teach us some things. Like coping skills. Or something. I dont know what. But I can't afford the money any longer to go all that way to sit there and listen to the same thing week after week after week and then hear maybe 15 minutes of something that might be helpful. And I ca n't speak up. It seems that whenever I do try to say something about myself, someone else in the group comes up with something to trump it. Like, "well you're having that little problem, well I've got a BIGGER ONE-- and let me interrupt now and tell everyone about it and start getting emotional and take over group now".
i cant compete with that, nor do i want to.
what i have to say doesn't matter.
i might as well not even open my mouth.
December 28, 2005
Making plans for the New Year & the Emancipation Proclamation
We've come to some realizations as we make plans to usher in 2006.
Some of which my therapist has challenged us to ponder and write down and study as the new year comes in.
It sounds and feels unbelievable, but inside, we are finally starting to change.
Finally starting to realize that some of the beliefs that we grew up with... are just wrong. That some of the things that we were taught... were lies. That our best interests were not always in the minds of caretakers. That some people in our lives, even though we put them on pedestals and worshipped them as gods as we were children, were really just clueless and inept. That many times, even as a child, I knew better what was right than the people did who were supposed to be keeping me safe and teaching me right from wrong.
This makes our heart incredibly heavy.
But at the same time... it feels like.... [searching for words]...maybe, possibly, perhaps, there is a crack in the wall letting a small ray of light in the blackness we've been living in our whole lives.
Its my challenge for this weekend as the New Year comes in to begin to write down some sort of Emancipation Proclamation. To hopefully begin a foundation for some new beliefs that we can establish for ourselves.