Meds and dreams and generally torturing myself

Ugh.  So I was sitting here at work simultaneously overheating and freezing (sweat lining my skin but I’m totally frozen to the touch) and being generally uncomfortable and I started wondering what the heck was going on when….suddenly…ohhh.  You see, I didn’t take my narcotic pain killer today or yesterday.  I’m not able to concentrate at work with all the craziness in my head and I was desperate to get some clarity so I took out the one that would bring a bit more pain back so I could focus on that instead.  It is such a driving, ceaseless pain that it forces my attention to the present.  When I spent too much time not focusing on the present, I slide back into the past with frightening speed.  So frustrating.

I texted Dayne to blow off a bit of steam and he called me right away, which was amazing.  He told me to be careful; said that he thought what I was doing was self-sabotaging because I can’t get control of the work situation.  He told me it’s my personal version of self-harming…that I do something to hurt myself when I can’t find a way out of a place in my head.  Perceptive huh?  He’s always understood those things so much better than I have.  So, I listed my reasons for doing so, as I am prone to do, and they included some very sound ones but, although he agreed with the points presented, he also gently swayed me back to centre by reminding me what it does to my body when I force it into withdrawal without warning.  He suggested dropping the dose (I already only take one third of the prescribed dose) but that sounded not so smart; if I do not find much efficacy from the small dose I already take, a smaller dose is not going to do much as I’ll still be putting the poison into my body for no great gain.  (Taking the full dose each day does help with the pain but it makes me stupid, sedated and completely unable to function).  More or less I’m in a place where I want to feel better but I’m so sick of these meds slowly eating me from the inside out.  (sigh)  Maybe he’s right though.  Maybe I’m just doing it to make everything harder for myself so I feel the way I (think I) deserve to feel?

Whatever.  I’m taking one when I get home tonight.  I think.  Dayne called it my personal version of ‘cutting’.  I don’t need any more to struggle with, even if my brain thinks I should.

Dreams last night were tiresome and repetitive.  The most recent memory/the last dream before waking, had me traveling to Mexico again.  I used to dream of this place often…I actually think it had to do with Mike, as it stopped happening constantly when he left my life, but it still pops up here and there.  When I travel there, I remember all the previous dreams and all the places I’ve been and experiences I’ve had, so I know the way around fairly well.  I checked in (or maybe just went up the stairs) and went to my room.  My stuff was all there….my phone, a computer, random clothing and bathroom stuff and the bed was unmade.  I was exhausted and even though I knew that I was only there for a short while (I had a clear sense that I was only there for the moment and would have to fly home shortly after my arrival).  I was going to go for a swim in the ocean but I couldn’t bring myself to get up once I lay down.  I fell asleep and woke with a start at 315 in the afternoon in a panic, thinking I had missed my plane.

‘What time do I usually fly home from here?’ I asked myself and tried hard to remember.  I knew it was late afternoon most times and I thought I was done for and would never reach the airport on time.  When in Mexico, the greatest reoccurring theme is that I cannot find my ticket/passport/papers needed to exit the country and I’m forever chasing behind a group or Dayne, trying to figure out where I need to go to pick things up.  I had no idea when the flight was but I knew how to get to the airport so I packed up as fast as I could and embarked on a walk that felt like years.  I eventually found a tour bus loaded with people and I asked the guide to help me, which she did.  Just before then, however, I was madly texting Dayne on my phone, asking about the flight information.  I woke up when he answered me in real life….

“Grainne?  Grainne….babe?  I can’t help you because I can’t understand what you’re asking me to do.”

(I was talking in my sleep – as per norm).

“I need you to help me find my way home!” I both said and heard myself say at once.

I woke up then, startled but relieved.  He was lying on his couch beside me and his head was cocked to see me; worried blue eyes catching the light from his ipad that he checked the time on.

“What are you doing to yourself babe?”  he asked in a sad, sleepy voice.

Just dreaming.  Back to sleep, love, back to sleep.

Somes it’s no fun being me

Some of what I don’t want to post:

I’m worried.  I’ve thought, for moments in the recent past, that I’m the one who is wrong here.  No one likes me aside from my very small and unique little family.  I was racing back into the past last evening, thinking about all the ones who I’ve worked for or with who didn’t like me, or rather, didn’t like the job I did for them.  It’s humiliating….painfully so….to even think of it, let alone write of it.  I always start out okay, everyone seems happy and things go well, until I start to drown in the work and then the tables turn.  I’ve thought that it was me all along but always blamed it outwardly on circumstance.  I don’t know though, which is reality and which is fantasy on this one.  If I go back to the start of my career here in health care I start a long list of people who were dissatisfied with what I had to give.  The first few loved me and then I took a “step up” job where they couldn’t keep staff for longer than three months at a time.  There was so much bullying going on there it was outrageous and I ended nearly every day in tears.  I then had my son and the post-partum depression along with the shock of suddenly being the mother of a disabled child (who screamed endlessly) shocked me into a full time depression with all sorts of little mentally unhinging goodies that plagued me for years following.  Through THAT time I was involved with M and working in a very isolated environment with a boss who was no fan of me at all.  I got lost in the mental mess for a while and then, when the physical pain started to supersede my emotional pain, I turned a hard focus to coping with that.  Honestly, that takes me right up today.  The pain and the stupid ptsd crap make things all sorts of difficult to handle, but I’ve hung in there and fought through.  But now, here I am in a suffocating role with far too much work to manage in one week and although I’m putting in the extra, unpaid time and racing to get everything done every day, it’s turning out not to be enough.  :S  My predecessor fucked me by working nearly ever weekend for free so she could keep them happy here.  I would do that if I was able to, as stupid as it is, but if I don’t sleep nearly my entire weekend away I find it impossible to manage to stay caught up at all.  ……

So now I’ve started making excuses.  Crap.  Are they excuses?  Am I just pathetically bad at what I do?  I don’t particularly like the job or the tasks involved but it’s a decent paycheque and the benefits and pension are so important for me to keep.  It’s not just me either – everyone around here has the same issue with the one boss and everyone (aside from the damn boss) knows how hard I’m working.  I worry that I’m just working this hard because I suck at it all though, and that’s throwing me for a spin.

In my last job I was dumb and told them about the physical issues I was facing.  They immediately stopped supporting me and I was given no allowance for the stress I was under (not that I deserved one, I don’t think).  When I tried to fix things they laid me off, then, when I had my exit interview, one of the reasons cited for not keeping my position active in the department was my sick time.  I was almost at a step one attendance management level.  Almost.  I didn’t go over the threshold though and every single incident was cleared before hand and most of the days off were for medical appointments and testing.  Lesson learned there – I was right the first time when I thought I should never admit weakness to anyone.  Ever.  The moment I do I am torn to shreds by whomever is closest to me at the time.

Hmm..that deserves a new paragraph, I think.  Weakness.  My father was one who preyed on weakness and used it to get what he wanted.  As a child and a new member to the family I loved my father and was desperate to make him love me back and then, desperate to maintain the level of love I had achieved each day.  I never, ever, stood up for myself with him, thinking that if I just let him get his anger and hatred out on me that we would more quickly return to a loving state.  I was wrong, but there was no way for me to know that at the time.  My mother was the same.  The moment I felt sorry for her everything was okay.  I never asked her to protect me, in fact, I openly took the brunt of things so he would leave her alone.  She put up with it until they made me leave and then she took steps to protect her natural children by booting dad out of the house and divorcing him after so many years.

“I thought he was going to kill you!”  she told me so.  many.  times.

I thought it was an offer of empathy at first; something to let me know that she understood how terrifying my younger years actually were, but I was wrong there too.  She was saying it so I knew how much the fear of him killing me affected HER.  It stunned me into silence when I made that connection.  I tried to stammer out a question over the phone but I couldn’t get one in around her self-induced panicky misery over her own issues.  Suddenly it all made sense in a sickening and soul-shaking way.  The reason she loved me when I was being supportive of her was only because it made her feel better.  Sympathy for someone you love sometimes exposes weakness.  Exposing weakness  sometimes means you won’t be given what you need.

Sometimes we’re just too blind to see the poison being dripped into our veins because some snake-charmer ass-wipe has tinted it the colour we think is synonymous with love.  ….or maybe it’s just me.  (It’s probably just me).

Forced words

*For crying out loud Grainne, this is a blog, not a massive online journal of draft posts that never see the little publish button clicked.*

I have written (counting…) 7 posts in the last three days and they all sit in draft.  I think I have a problem feeling entitled to express my feelings on some things so, although they are impacting me greatly and I’m desperate to get them on the screen and out of my head, I can’t bring myself to make them real.  How stupid.  It’s a blog and it’s not like there are thousands of folks hanging on my every word.  Plus, the entire point of this thing I’ve been writing for years now was exposure.  Sharing.  Connection (sort of, somewhat, maybe).  Bah.  I should just copy and past it all into one long ramble and be done with it (but I won’t, for whatever reason).  *sigh* Exasperated with myself.  

So I’m all trigger-y and weird these days, as well indicated by my starting today’s post by talking to myself.  I can smell things all over the place and it’s driving me a bit nuts.  Most of you know I have heightened sensory issues that are said to come from the ptsd and the carefully cultivated need to be absolutely aware of any danger that might even be thinking of sneaking up on me at all moments of the day and night.  In my sleep I am spring loaded to react to the slightest touch…lol…Dayne has learned this lesson well in the past with a few unintentional bruises delivered by elbows, feet, hands and body as I flailed dramatically and viciously out of what looked like a peaceful sleep when he tried to cuddle with me in the night.  In the day, this hyper-awareness manifests as an assault of most of my senses.  I feel physical pain when bright lights glare down on me, can hear things all over the building in a constant chatter….it’s distracting as all get out.  I not only hear snippets of conversation through the walls but can also isolate all the electrical noises, phones ringing, office equipment, nurse calls….it’s nearly deafening when I focus on it.  At home I hear people driving by and other people’s televisions constantly and I live on 34 acres of trees in the midst of five other properties with a single house on each.  The smells though, they are what bother me the most.  I shower daily because I don’t even like smelling my own smells when I do not….I have raised Colt to do so as well and, luckily, Dayne is a bit of a personal hygiene freak.  (Can I just say that I am so damn thankful that he is a hairless guy?  He has thick, gorgeous hair on his head and can grow a beard in three days flat but from the neck down he’s only got a few sparse, soft hairs in all the right, manly places.  Chest – buttery smooth; Back – not even the hint of a hair; Butt – same again.  Also, it might be prudent to mention that my ex-husband was part bear and had thick, curly, black hair from head to toe.  I’m a woman of contrasts, it seems).   

*I just laughed out loud with an unattractive snort at the end when a patient had the following conversation with another, just outside my office door:  “So, where do I go?”  “Oh, go on down to the gym, through those doors and to your left.”  “I don’t know what you mean.  Do I go to where it says GYM on the sign?”  “Yep!  You’ve got it!”  “Wait – what if that sign isn’t on my left?”* 

Anyway.  Back to the nose issue.  I can smell food on people all the time, and I don’t mean just after someone’s had a caesar salad for lunch, I mean the next day after at least two tooth brushings and a probable shower.  Not just strong smells like garlic or onion either, but softer, sweeter smells as well.  I can tell from fifty paces if you’ve forgotten to brush your teeth that day.  I can smell the plaque/bacteria building up on teeth (I know this because I can smell my own as well).  I can smell a persons breath on instruments like telephones for up to two days after they’ve used it.  I can’t tell you how much I love today’s society where we each have our own little phone that we keep in our pocket and no one EVER touches it unless we say it’s okay.  I haven’t even picked up my house phone in years.  I’m not even sure we still have it….that line hasn’t rung in at least two years now.  So that covers breath.  lol….then there are the rest of the normal smells I hate like body odor (I love Dayne’s though – weird how chemicals in your brain can influence your tastes like that).  I can smell when a gal is on her period and can usually smell bacterial infections brewing, even before symptoms start to show.  It’s a horror show, that one, when you stop to think that I work in an acute care hospital.  Every floor smells totally different to me and all of the smells are nauseating.  Emergency smells like blood, if you ever wondered.  The antiseptic and antiviral cleaners overpower most of it, but underneath the layers of chemical-clean, there is blood….and fear.  Adrenaline?  Not sure what that smell actually is, now that I think of it, but ‘fear’ captures it well.   

There.  Rather than write about what I feel inside, I’ll write about what I feel outside.  Fuck…how did I manage that exactly???   

It’s times like this that I start to wonder who is really in control here, me or my brain. 

Dreams of others who protect what I cannot

In dreams last night I was trying to find a safe place to hide.  Somewhere small and well concealed so I could *just* pull my arms and legs in after my body and be completely hidden, albeit squashed into some tiny spot.  I found an air vent that was loose in an abandoned building and pried it off with my fingers then began the awkward contortions required to squeeze myself into the too-small ventilation system opening.  Once I got in though…wow did I ever feel better.  Safe.  Another spot I found was an old fireplace that had been walled over years before.  It was made entirely out of stone and each was a different shape with totally uneven sides.  The mortar was simply mud and I poked at it and wondered how it had lasted so long as it instantly turned to dust at my touch.  I had found the spot because there was a very subtle outline on the drywall that caught my eye.  I picked a tiny hole out of the wall behind a hanging picture and peeked in, then tore at the wall in huge chunks to get to my discovery.  I had to pull myself up and over the drywall to get through the hole I made and I folded my body in half, lying on my bent legs in a yoga “child’s pose”, face-down in the ancient soot that lay at the bottom of the fireplace.  It was filling my lungs each time I took a breath but I didn’t care.  The chimney was not closed off so there was a tiny spark of light coming from above me, too slight to light anything up but bright enough to see through my closed eyelids.  It was comforting but not exposing, so I was very happy.  I knew I could sleep there, in that fireplace behind the wall, for years and years and it felt so much like home I couldn’t even convince myself to turn my head away from the soot.  I was peaceful inside for the first time in the longest time…inside dreams or out.

Another dream involved my crowd of seven who follow me in and out of dream situations and have done so all my life.  They rarely talk to me, never, ever speak my name and their faces aren’t really identifiable at all, I just know them from the way they feel.  They were standing around me in dreams, almost as if protecting me by forming a human shield around my body.  They all had their backs to me except for the one male who always faces me….he wrapped his arms around me and let me hide my face in his chest.  We were in a house I’ve not seen before in my dreams but it was very bland and empty feeling.  My protector kissed the top of my head and whispered for me to look at something.  I peeked around his shoulder just in time to see my girl in the woods vanish around a corner down the hallway.  I asked what she was doing here (this is not one of the places I ever see her and I’m almost always alone when I do so it was very out of place feeling) but no one answered me, as usual.  Rather than chase her this time, feeling so exposed and in danger, I just cuddled back into the safety of my friend’s arms and closed my eyes again.  The group pressed in tighter, their backs still to me like a ring of animals protecting their young from being eaten by a predator and I felt okay again.  The pressure from them built until I was struggling to breathe, their combined embrace was so tight, and I let of control….gave it all over to them for the moment.  It felt like sheer joy…freedom…safety and protection and love.  Self love….somehow.  That’s a pretty unusual feeling for me in dreams and I relished it; woke up aching for it, several times in the night.

I wish I could pull those people out of my head and actually surround myself with them today.  I don’t know what that means, exactly, only how it feels, and it feels like what I’ve been missing all along.  Weird eh?   I was just happy the dreams were safe ones so didn’t give it much thought until now, when I felt that same ache and wondered where it came from.  I hope this all makes sense on day…lol..not banking on it though.  *sigh*

So, it’s Thursday.  Two more days until I get to go back to sleep and reunite with my strange crew of friends who only exist in my brain.  Does that qualify as imaginary friends?

Oh….I did finally get my sleep study appointment.  It’s for December 4th.  Apparently everyone and their brother are needing assessments these days creating a ridiculous wait list.  Maybe I’ll see if my benefits will help pay for studies in the States.  I know I could get them done in less than nine months, at least.  Worst part is that this is just the consult….no studies will be done then so I’m not really going to get anywhere until 2016.   Ahhh Canadian health care.  You can be such a bitch sometimes….

Okay, that’s it for me today.  Take care my friends.  Talk to you all soon.  x

Someone other than me

Did you notice that you did not find me?  I’m not sure you did.  I think you drew a picture of what you thought I should be in your mind, and then tried to jam me into the shape without care or concern as to what you were squeezing out of me in the process.  Do you know how sad it made me to know that what I am is nothing even close to what you wanted?  That you kept telling me you cared meant so damn much to me, I was willing to contort my body and twist my soul to try, endlessly, to fit your ideal.  Stupid, really.  It was far too small and entirely the wrong shape.  You accused me of lying when I tried to correct what was wrong in perception….you really believed yourself too, no matter what I said in self-defense or desperation.  How sad it really all was, in the end.  (That paragraph was written for one person in particular but could apply to many in my past.  Mike, my father, my mother, and a sizable handful of friends included).

I woke up from dreams last night with such an ache in my chest my heart felt like it would pound right through my ribs.  I feel like I haven’t been touched in years.  Dayne could see it in me this morning as we shuffled past each other in and out of the shower.  He stopped me and stared into my sleepy eyes, concern creasing his brow.

“What is it babe?” he asked, so gently.

“Just stressed.  Tired.  Headache….life.  You know.”

He gave me a sad little smile and pulled me in for a hug.  I could have fallen back to sleep standing up, in his arms.  He kissed me with those soft lips of his (Dayne has the best lips I’ve ever seen on a guy.  Big, warm, soft and dry…..ahhh perfection) and when I went to pull back he stepped forward, prolonging the moment.  We stood like that, one breathing in while the other breathed out and shared our space for a moment, forgetting all the rest.  Such love.  So lucky.

So yeah.  This is the start to my day.  Physically, things are looking up.  I am in a shit-ton of pain today but am nearly completely able to allow it to exist with me.  It’s sitting there beside me, reading as I type over my shoulder and I’m not fighting it….just letting it be.  It feels so much less aggressive and disabling this way.  My head is not too bad so it makes everything easier to do this with as well.  My chin and jaw are still numb and I’m dribbling tea out of the corner of my mouth now and then but I’m so grateful for the numbness (rather than a new and more enduring pain) that I’m barely acknowledging it.

I do need a hug though.  A nice, long, warm one please, just to feel another human being that close to me.  I got a decent one out of Colt this morning but he’d had an accident in bed so we couldn’t really snuggle up without me needing to change all my clothes.  I’ll just hang onto that memory of Dayne’s kiss today and hope it keeps me grounded until I get back home.

*Grainne’s brain curls up under a blanket and goes back to sleep for the day while the body works*

zzzzzzzzz

Life and stuff

I worked my little tail off yesterday and plowed through a ton of work which made both bosses happier, at least for now.  I also got the equipment out of my office and can drink tea in my office again.  It’s Wednesday.  All things I’m grateful for today. 

I dreamed about my boss all night.  lol…gawd, I can’t quite articulate how much I hate that.  I dreamed that she was driving around through the bad neighborhood in my dreams (I have an apartment there but it’s in such a bad area, people rob it daily and I never feel safe).  I kept telling her not to drive through there but she kept shushing me and pulled into the back alley between two buildings to stop at a gas pump I didn’t know was there.  She opened the doors to clean out the garbage in her car and two guys who were fist fighting two feet away from us instantly reached into the car to drag us into their fight.   I got hauled out by the hair and I was yelling at the boss, telling her that I had told her this would happen.  I was beat up and scared and managed to get away and back to my apartment somehow.  Drew, a real life friend, not a dream one, was with me and we lay down together on a mattress on the floor.  I shoved my hands and feet under his side to ground myself and feel safe and he threw an arm over me before drifting off.  I felt safe and it was really nice.  I was thinking about how I had to get up for work in a few hours and how little sleep I was going to get before I drifted off too.  It’s a constant and recurring theme in my dreams that I am missing sleep, even though I’m actually sleeping in reality.  I’ll lie there, wide awake in a dream, frustrated because I know I’m going to be so tired the next day at work.  Sometimes there are people with me (my group of seven who pop in and out of my dreams at random) and they fall asleep with no trouble while I lie there, awake.  I think my brain knows I’m sleeping so the frustration comes not from being kept awake, but from not being able to resolve the inconsistency between feeling like I should be sleeping in dreams and actually sleeping in reality.  

I had a dream about Mike too.  He was working a retail job in one of my dream malls, all dressed up in drag.  It was some kind of accessory shop that sold purses and scarves, very feminine and pretty.  He was having a hoot, chatting up all the ladies who came into the store to browse and he looked so much more alive than he ever did in real life.  If we were talking, I’d suggest it to him.  I’m sure he’d think the job is too far beneath him (he’s a really intelligent guy – it’s just emotional intelligence he’s completely lacking in).  Still though, I remember having so much fun working retail.  It pays shit, but the hours are awesome and you can work a ton or just a few, as your needs and availability change.  He’d be able to meet and interact with people and then go home and back to his computer games.  A tiny store somewhere wouldn’t be too busy so he’d not get overwhelmed with people….he’s got some job fantasy stuck in his head though and seems to think someone out there will just snap him up because he’s good at what he does.  What Mike doesn’t realize is that you need a college degree just to work most entry level jobs these days.  Even the secretaries here have a two year degree and there’s not too much to learn about their job.  They answer phones, book patients, answer phones, book patients, some of them bill for services, few do dictation….but you have to have post-high school education to even apply.  Anyway.  I’ve only peeked at his blog a few times in the last while…ever since I realized that he wasn’t even remotely interested in me as I was.  He had some bizarre fantasy written up to supersede my actual personality and our frustration was in trying to force his version of me to actually fit who I am.  I am honest and loving, loyal and affectionate.  He overwrote those traits of mine to be deceitful, manipulative, disrespectful and malicious.  He tried to convince me that I had Borderline Personality Disorder and didn’t care about what the psychiatrists and mental health professionals said.  So pompous to think he knew me better than anyone.  I never, once, poked fun at his delusions or tried to tell him that everything he knew of himself was wrong.  He didn’t give me the same though, and it hurt like hell.  I am such a gentle soul…maybe he just could never come to terms with the fact that someone like me could love someone like him.  (He will NEVER admit that in a billion years but for whatever reason, it doesn’t matter to me anymore.  Yay me!) 

Onto happy thoughts.  This morning as I crawled into Colt’s bed to wake him I had to smile at how he was sleeping.  He has a sleeping bag in his bed for the winter (also has a waterproof lining so is easy to throw in the wash when he wets the bed.  It absorbs it all too so doesn’t soak the mattress).  He had been tossing and turning last night and had peeled all the blankets off his mattress, including the fitted sheet at the bottom.  Sleeping on a bare mattress, he rolled himself up in the sleeping bag and looked like a little hot dog with only a tuft of his hair sticking out the top. 

“Good morning my little hot dog on a bun” I whispered and I gathered the whole bag with him in it into my arms.  

He smiled sleepily and snuggled into me mumbling that he was not a hot dog, he was a Colt.  I cuddled him and told him how much I love him and after a few minutes I said I had to go or I was going to be late for work.  He wiggled his arm free of the sleeping bag and grabbed my hand as I was unwinding myself from him and said:

“Uh excuse me mom, I was using that….” and pulled my arm back around him. 

So, yeah.  I was a few minutes late for work.  I can’t think of a better reason to be late though.  That little moment between us meant so much to me.  Colt has only ever tolerated my hugs…never really wanted them.  It’s been going on for a while now and the thrill hasn’t died down in the least.  I waited a good decade for this….for my son to love me back and wow, does it ever make life worth living?  My sweet little raison d’etre. 

 

Mother stuff and crappy bosses

Droning along, droning along. That’s what it feels like these days, more or less. I’m not unhappy at all, just…tired. I feel like I have to police my energy spending so I can be sure to manage a work week. Not only is this job ridiculously busy, I also have passive-aggressive and outright aggressive leaders to contend with and that just sends my head for a spin. I cannot deal with people who dislike me and then nitpick me to pieces…it feels like they’re looking for things to be disappointed in, and the outcome of that is just exhausting. Yesterday, I was told I’m breaking the ‘food and drink’ policy by drinking tea in my office while I work (I don’t ever leave my effing office) because I had some broken patient equipment in here that was waiting for repair. Seriously. I tried to move the equipment but, of course, there is no space to do so. Every inch of space is at a premium around here, even though there are huge empty rooms that no one is using. *sigh* Whatever. Just need to find a better balance here somehow. Will have to keep working on that one.

I had a dream last night about my mother. It’s not a surprise at all since the bitchy/bully boss of mine triggers every issue I face inside my head, but was still super annoying. I woke with the (real, not dream) memory of a conversation we once had ringing in my head. I was about 20 at the time and was chatting with her on the phone (we used to talk on the phone for hours at a time. Daily at some points after we reconnected. I had found myself a place in the world and was no longer homeless so she was better able to look at me without feeling guilty. She hated guilt more than anything.) I was talking about having children one day and what it would be like (amazing how different things turned out from what I had expected them to be like) and she interrupted me by saying:

“Oh god Grainne! Please don’t ever have kids! I can just see it now; you would be calling me every other minute panicking about everything that happened! Mom! The baby coughed! What do I do? ha ha ha ha!”

She thought it was a pretty funny idea. I was so offended and hurt I didn’t say anything at all, just closed my mouth, changed the subject and never spoke of it again. Flash forward to me actually becoming a mother and wow, did the tables ever turn. My mother left me and my newborn son to cry and scream and worry all by ourselves. She ‘couldn’t deal with the constant crying’ that Colt produced or the fussy eating issues. She told me over and over again that she ‘didn’t know how I managed’ to cope with it all. She told me that she would never have had another kid had her biological son had been her first, as he had colic for his first three months and that alone was more than she could take.

She left me to my own devices as I screamed for help in the basement of her house; turning up the TV and running the dishwasher to cover up the noise. One time I made it to the top of the stairs while he was chasing me and he grabbed my foot causing me to slam into the stairs face-first. She was in the kitchen and could see me entirely, saw my lips split open on impact, and she just glazed over and turned away, looking for something in the fridge. He dragged me back downstairs and my head thumped on each step as I went. She never came down to see if I was okay. Well, that’s not entirely true. That night, as I recall, he got stupid drunk and raped me anally. Something about it made him feel guilty for a second so he went to her, bawling, saying over and over “I don’t know what I’ve done hen. I don’t know what I’ve done…” She thought he had killed me. To her credit, she did yell down the stairs to see if I was still alive, although she didn’t actually come see me. She didn’t want to know what he had ‘done’ once she knew I was still alive. I guess. She left me to him because it took the heat off of her. How…cowardly. My therapist once said that….she told me she usually didn’t cast judgement on people she had never met, even the abusers her patients had dealt with in life, but she wanted me to know her thoughts on my mother. “That woman is a coward!” she said. I still smile when I think of it. She’s such a great woman, my therapist. I still see her now and then, just to check in really. Her rates are so high it’s hard to maintain a constant schedule but she’s happy to see me once a month or so…even longer between. She even offered just to see me in crisis moments, which is pretty amazing. I’m lucky I found her. I actually miss her quite a bit, reading so many of your stories with your awesome (mostly) therapists. Especially my lovely friend Bourbon and her therapist. Warms my heart, reading of their work together. Anyway…. Enough of my mother. She’s taken up enough space in my head for one day.

The boss saga continues. One is over-the-moon happy with me and the other is seething. These two are like having twins who have competition issues; well, very different twins. lol. One is so reasonable but is an absolute stickler for process and procedure where the other is fly-off-the-handle crazy over everything. I was almost in tears yesterday and was all the way there on Friday….all over nothing that makes a difference in the least. I invite this sort of bullying behaviour by the way I react. I’m not absolutely sure what it is…maybe my constant need to have people happy with me. Maybe it’s just the threat of failure that sinks me into an instant pit of panic and despair. I need to better manage this. I need not to let them eat at my confidence or happiness. Dayne’s way is to be pretty harsh with them and I don’t like the way that feels so I’ll modify it to suit my own needs. I’ve struggled with this as long as I’ve been alive though. I remember flat-out hysterically crying every time things didn’t go exactly to plan when my parents were involved. A dentist appointment is in my mind right now…they were doing some work and my dad took me for some reason (my mother always took me to those clinics). I went in, all brave even though tears were streaking my face, and after the dentist looked at me he decided they couldn’t do the work without putting me out. We had to go right back to the waiting room where my father sat and when he said “Och that was fast! Are we all done?” I started sobbing. Things hadn’t happened the way they were supposed to and I as SO afraid of disappointing him.

Damnit. I’ve just replaced my parents with my boss. It happened in the last job too…and the one before. When I didn’t have a bully in my life I took Mike in who caused so much intense pain through the fear of failure. I failed at everything I tried to do for him and he never, ever let me forget it, even for a second. Dayne can be a bully, although not so much with me anymore. He’s softened and grown so much in the last decade and has become a soft place to land, not one filled with jagged edges and bottomless pits.

Did I mention that my entire chin is numb? I thought I was about to have an abscess in a tooth I, for some reason, refuse to get pulled. My dad broke it with his ring when I was a kid…grabbing me in a weird way. It’s nearly eroded to nothing and I think the nerves are suddenly dying…or exposed…I don’t really know. There is almost no pain, no swelling and no redness so there’s no infection but this numbness isn’t much fun. I dribble tea out of the corner of my mouth now. (lol! Omg just the thing I needed eh?)

Ah well. Okay, back to the craziness here for a while. Must get payroll started as it’s due in a few days. Take care, my friends. xo

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