Category Archives: mood tracking

Compartmentalization failure

It occurs to me this morning that it would be a lot easier for me emotionally if I were mad at Person X for not supplying me with Y help. That would be something I could unpack and deal with and rationalize and figure out why it was not a good thing.

What I have instead feels like a weird amalgamation of feeling sad that my mother never wanted to take care of me the way a mother should with feeling sad that I can contribute to communities for years and never feel like part of them.

I often think sadly that I would be in a much better position to just take care of all of my own needs if I stopped helping other people so much. If I didn’t drive so far to help people who are falling down in their lives. If I didn’t go clean peoples houses. If I didn’t sit and spend hours helping other people process their emotions. I’d have more to give myself and I don’t think I would feel such an emptiness.

But giving to other people is a lot of how I buy my right to be alive. Not because they care. Because I have to perceive me as having something to give.

This is a problem.

I’m genuinely not mad at Sarah or Taylor or Michelle or or or or or. All of my friends are busy. They are doing things they must do. None of them are short changing me. No one is neglecting me or failing to give me what they should.

Folks like Rose continue to show up in ways that blow my mind. I’m going to spend about a thousand dollars total on baby gear (mostly diapers cause they ain’t cheap) and supplies because she gave me everything else. That was fantastically kind and generous of her. The babysitters mama sends me a text message and we have a 10 minute or so conversation every other week. I’m not completely ignored. Some folks check in periodically over IM. It’s not that I have nothing and no one.

The universe does give to me. I don’t want to make it sound like I get noooooooooooothing. That’s bullshit and not true.

The problem is that I spend a lot of time in my head not being able to talk about most of the things I’m thinking and that feels isolating and alienating and bad.

I’m rarely alone. I have a lovely family and I have good friends. I know it isn’t fair that I complain so much. I know that a lot of people have it worse than me.

My massage therapist told me that when I feel sorry for myself I should just focus on how much better I have it than other people. Uhm. I have never found that to help me even a little. “Other people suffer! Awesome that means I can’t.”

Yeah it doesn’t go like that.

This is part of why I feel so much shame about ever asking for any kind of support. I don’t deserve it because I already have it better than a lot of people.

People were telling me that when I was homeless and starving though. It’s true of my life now… but people have been saying it to me so long and through so much suffering that it doesn’t mean to me what it does to other people.

It is hard feeling like if I can’t get my thoughts and feelings to conform to what other people think I should be thinking and feeling that I should eliminate myself so that people don’t have to deal with me.

I am too much trouble. I’m not worth the effort.

Briefly

Friday was rough. One of the most rage filled days I’ve had in a long time. It felt awful and I was not nice. But I’m glad that my raging took the form of not sounding nice when I said things like “Stop kicking me” and “Stop doing this thing we already told you not to do.” I didn’t attack peoples character or call names. I was just…. so angry.

Yesterday, by contrast, was nice.

I want a new brain.

My kids amuse me.

My kids are approaching puberty. They are both SO EXCITED. Last night at bed time my daughter (9 years old) was really sad and she couldn’t figure out why. We spent a while talking and snuggling and being close because it’s ok to have any feeling you have.

This morning she woke up to brag to their sibling that she is so excited that mood swings are happening and now they are randomly sad sometimes… and it’s great because mom was there. Mom hugged her and helped her feel better and that was so nice.

I love you so much. I really want to help you learn that your feelings are ok. They are just waves that come and if you are patient with yourself… they won’t overwhelm you. Your feelings are ok. Even if you don’t know what they are and even if you don’t know why you are having them. That’s ok too.

Mood swings are part of life. I love you.

4 so far

Hours of crying, that is. It’s a bad night. I feel like it would be very wise for me to avoid talking to anyone indefinitely because I’m taking everything anyone says, no matter how neutral or positive they mean it, as more sign that I am a disgusting piece of shit who should die. Everything is my fault and I can’t fix anything.

I banned myself

I blocked the forum site and Twitter and Facebook from my computer. I have been reading folks Twitter without logging in and I shoulder surf Noah’s FB account.

I need to stop.

It exacerbates my feeling that I don’t belong anywhere and I am not important to anyone’s life.

I’ll see who is still in my life, I guess. Oh! I’m going to go see one of my buddies from junior high this weekend. She’s moving and I’m going to haul my trailer down to her place so she can move all her schtuff in one load. That’ll be fun. I’ll be glad to see her. Things are looking up in her life. She says that being able to buy the car opened the door to super wonderful things.

I feel so grateful I was able to help my dear old friend.

Drifting

I’m not bouncing back. I’m tired and listless and drained. All I want to do is sit and stare off into space.

I’m still helping the kids with academics and doing some chores. But I feel like I’m mentally not here.

Mood shit

I was talking to my massage therapist today and she commented that I sound depressed. I’m not taking much pleasure in anything. I feel sad. I feel irritable as fuck. I feel like I am a mean terrible person who won’t ever be worth spitting on if I’m on fire.

I want to quit everything and hide under a rock until I die.

Grief

I think I’m grieving for a bunch of relationships I thought would last longer than they would. It is resulting in me feeling very prickly about people in general.

I trust that people will stay in my life, out at arm’s length. There are friends where I don’t feel pent up pissiness or bitterness about the fact that we see each other every five years or so. It feels ok.

Then there are the people where it feels like a betrayal.

It depends on how much I felt bonded to someone before they distanced themselves or walked away. I gain too much of my self esteem from people liking me. Having these people change their minds…

It feels like an erasure of any value I might have had.

I know that isn’t “how it works” but it is how it feels.

I’m doing one of those things where I feel drifty and distant and wrong.

Calm or productive

This morning started out a little rough for me. I asked EC a couple of weeks ago to cull the multiple boxes of school stuff from last year and pick out which items she wants to put in her portfolio. I guess she didn’t understand what I meant. She threw away all of her previous work from grades K-3 and she threw away her sibling’s portfolio work (only kindergarten) and she filled the portfolio’s with random memorabilia and knick knacks. I didn’t discover this till today, so there’s no chance of climbing through the recycling and getting stuff back.

I about blew a gasket.

I didn’t call names. I didn’t scream about how terrible they were. But I did scream that I was very angry. When I calmed down I said (perhaps inappropriately) that a lot of the reason I am so meticulous about keeping this documentation is because I need to make sure no one can ever say I’m not educating my kids and take them away. EC internalized this as “I threw away the portfolio documentation and that means I’m going to be taken away.” We’ve since talked about how there aren’t actually legal requirements to keep this documentation and my fear of CPS is very irrational given that we are unlikely to be looked at as a family at risk. We talked about the difference between a rational fear and an irrational fear.

I think we’ve all calmed down. But I’ve been the opposite of productive since then. Because I need to put most of my mental and emotional energy into calming down. I uhhh also neglected to take any pot till 1pm, which doesn’t help.

Noah says I didn’t cross a line but the line was getting reeeeeal close and I was teetering.

It’s weird having another adult in the house to walk around following me as I rant. It makes me think I’m glad he missed the first three years of my parenting because I was a much bigger bitch.

My poor children.

I sent out another email looking for a therapist for EC. She has fallen through the cracks in the past few months because the folks who looked possible for her didn’t pan out. I need to get that in line though. It’s not ok that she justifies me screaming at her. That’s fucked up and not ok and she needs to have her own therapist who can help her feel like no one should be screaming at her. Not even her mother.

She isn’t always ok with me screaming at her. I don’t get a free pass. But if I’m yelling at her about something she really did she will often say, “Oh I deserve this one.”

NO. YOU MAY DESERVE TO HAVE SOMEONE TALK TO YOU SHARPLY BUT NO ONE DESERVES TO BE SCREAMED AT UNLESS THEY ARE COMMITTING ASSAULT. SCREAMING IS A SIGN THAT SOMEONE HAS LOST CONTROL AND THAT’S BULLSHIT.

She needs a therapist. I say it to her all the damn time. I phrase it as, “I lost control and I was wrong.”

She doesn’t want me to feel bad.

That’s broken and we need to fix it. I get to feel bad for my shitty actions, too.

Grown ups

We all hung out for a few hours yesterday. I think four hours total in the day. They had other stuff to go do. I rested because that’s seriously what I need to be doing with my life right now.

The time we spent together was… a little awkward sometimes but ok. I think the conversations were all positive if occasionally stiff and the specific behaviors that had been bothering me previously were not repeated.

Phew.

I understand that they had a very stressful week aside from me being here. Recovering from surgery while doing two weeks worth of work in a week… that’s stressful. It is very important for me to keep in mind that these people are 99.99999% not reacting to me. They are reacting to what is going on in their lives.

It was a good trip. I’m glad I came. There were a few hours with a few tense interactions because we don’t actually know one another. I think that’s pretty damn good if that is as negative as it got. There was no open hostility. There was no fighting or bickering. I had moments of feeling triggered.

That’s really not the end of the world. I kept my feelings and behavior in check.

Well done on being a grown up, everyone. That was nice.

Because I’m a narcissistic asswipe I feel good about the fact that part of the tension in the trip was about me emphatically stating a point of view that had not been previously been considered because it necessitates life experiences they haven’t had. By the end of the trip the conversation evolved to the point where they figured out a way to include my point of view while maintaining their own standards and beliefs about something that is coming up in their life. I don’t want to give specifics about the situation so cryptic shit is cryptic. But my take away is that I did not necessarily share my point of view in a tactful way (I vary in presentation) but they did really hear me. And they listened because I was talking about a type of interaction with vulnerable populations that they care about getting right.

You really can’t ask for anything more than being heard.

So a lot of my preparation for walking away was bitchy and totally unnecessary. I’m glad I didn’t manifest those feelings more loudly. I think I managed to keep those feelings like 98%-99% under wraps. I’m glad.

These folks were nice to me. I hope I didn’t communicate my distress more than I meant to. Y’all know. But my IP tracker says these folks haven’t checked out my blog. Given how overwhelming their life is just the now that makes sense. I’m kinda hoping it stays that way. But if they do come reading, hi. You are lovely people and I appreciated the time with you. I learned more about controlling myself and being a grown up. Thank you for the opportunity.

I see my family in 11 hours. I can barely wait.

An interaction

Holy tomatoes on toast I hurt. So this’ll be brief.

I had an interesting interaction with a dude today. So I found a guy through my massage therapist who specializes in personal training to help people with injuries/problems. I figure that if I can’t get a doctor to prescribe honest to fucking god physical therapy for me so that I can heal some of my injuries… I can hunt on the outskirts of the system. I can find someone who doesn’t really mesh with the gate kept, abusive system.

Sure, I can try this out.

Thing is, he’s a white guy. You know how I am about getting my hackles up with white guys. Especially athletic white guys. I am hostile until I have a reason not to be.

But I desperately need someone who can do what this guy advertises. So I gotta put my personal shit in a box and shove it in a closet and see if I can handle dealing with him.

Sigh. Fuck being a grown up.

So I gotta say, he has an aura. He’s pretty clearly an orphan. The loss of all family came up several times in the conversation. He’s got that… edge of “I have to be cheerfully polite in order to earn money to survive because there’s not a person in the world who values me enough to support me but I’m so sad.”

I mean, he seemed genuinely sweet and caring. I’m not denigrating that at all. He seems incredibly sincere. He wants to help. And he wears grief like a mantle. He advertises his loss openly on his skin. He is reminded all day every day. Grief, even if you smile, leaves tracks on your face.

But he did something that crossed a boundary and it was interesting. I didn’t call it out. I didn’t assert the boundary so in one sense… he didn’t cross a boundary he nonverbally negotiated a boundary change and I didn’t rebuff it to indicate where my boundary actually was.

To be more clear: he asked me about my arm tattoo. I explained it and started tearing up, like I do sometimes. Suicide is sad, yo. And… he leaned in and gave me an incredibly respectful, incredibly gentle, incredibly touching hug. It was the hug of someone who works with bodies and knows how to make touch 100% NON SEXUAL, OKAY?!?!?!

He reminds me just a tad of Taylor. One of the few men I trust almost as much as Noah.

It was absolutely incredible to realize that in a moment of indecision of “should I panic and fight or should I accept this as connection?” in my head my brain wrapped around a man who has loved me as a friend for a long time.

I didn’t feel scared.

I felt uncertain. I felt like I needed to make a decision. I felt like I had a chance to… figure out how this is going to go. Is he allowed to touch me?

I desperately want this man to help me learn how to hold my body in ways that will hurt me less. I need to trust him. I need to trust that he is going to touch me in appropriate ways or this just isn’t going to work.

This, now that I think about it, is scary as shit.

I wasn’t scared in that moment. I just felt it as a moment of choice, “Am I going to surrender to this process or not?”

I used to lash out at dance teachers who wanted to correct my form. I wasn’t there to look perfect I was there to have a chance to talk to people for 2-4 minutes while I did something more healthy than be a slug staring at my god damn computer.

This is different. I know what my goals are here. I need this process.

I need to figure out how to be in less pain.

So maybe he didn’t cross a boundary. But maybe he and I will have a funny conversation about how I normally react to people in a few weeks and we will laugh. He will probably apologize and feel embarrassed. He strikes me as that sort.

It felt like Joey. The 7th Day Adventist boy who was best friends with my brother Tommy and with whom I later lived. (We were both boarders in a house owned by someone at the church–it wasn’t like we were romantic or anything. I was 13.)  He was the one who took me to church and taught me to sing about Jesus loving me no matter what.

I know I have a lot of issues with hating white men because some of them have been complete motherfucking pieces of shit.

But some of them genuinely don’t suck. #Notallmen and all that.

I really hope I’m not making a mistake. But here I am documenting it so that in the future I will have to remember: I made a choice.

I’m trying to surrender to a process.

Please, if any deity exists, let this not be an awful thing.

I’ve stacked the deck in my favor by receiving this personal training with my kids in the room and my husband in the house.

I know how the patriarchy works.

Fuck.

Do you understand how much of my childhood people denied? Something huge and dramatic would happen and folks flat denied it. I need to make sure I can never rewrite history.

I did what I did. Here, I wrote it down.

Sad

I’m in that place where reaching out to talk to people seems like a bad idea. All the things I want to say sound like whining and complaining and I don’t have the right.

I’ve had some interesting thoughts in the last week about how I do not have the right to complain any more. I’m not destitute. I’m not trading abuse for survival. I have it good.

Just shut up already.

Wrong again

It’s one of those times when my anxiety is on hyperdrive. I’m doing everything wrong, right? Every interaction I have with people seems to be fraught.

One problem is that I’m struggling with how much control and influence and power I have. There are times and places when I don’t agree with how something is being handled and I shut up because there’s nothing I can do. Then there are times and places where I feel like I am a bad person if I shut up because someone is being harmed and if I ignore that… I’m part of the problem.

I’m part of the problem. If I see people being harmed by others in their life and I do nothing… I’m saying I basically agree.

What if I don’t agree that something is being handled right?

Good luck with those feelings.

Because I don’t get to decide. And I’m afraid that by talking about what I see I am going to become the problem and then I won’t be able to help in any way because I was stupid enough to talk about the problem.

Not everyone can do everything. We all have limits. We all have things we can’t do. I can’t teach fussy, fiddly little activities that involve a high amount of fine motor control. Even if I can do it (under protest) I can’t teach it because I get frustrated and angry and explosive. So I outsource that shit. I can’t teach everything. My kids take classes because I can’t teach everything. I am not that cool. That’s why as they get older they will spend more and more time away from me. Because they will have mostly learned what I have to teach.

I don’t think there is one Twue Way that parenting or schooling should happen. Some people like home schooling and it works well for their family. Some people need to have their kids in school. Some people need to have their kids in school and after school care every day for any one of millions of potential reasons.

None of these choices are wrong if they work well for the child and the family. It’s when the solution is clearly not working for either the parent or the child that you need to look at making changes.

It is easy for me to sit on my high horse and see the problems in other peoples systems. I’m afraid I am failing to see the problems in mine. I was honestly hoping for more criticism from Stanford because other than “Do more academics” which was the plan anyway and which we have already caught up on…. What do I change now?

I have no feedback to help direct me. Just… do something. What you are doing seems to work ok.

THAT’S NOT GOOD ENOUGH. Everyone fucks up. Everyone has things they don’t do well and things they do very well. WHAT AM I DOING WRONG?!

I shout more than I should. But professional evaluators tell me I don’t shout as much as other people and it isn’t that big of a deal.

So what does should mean anyway?

I don’t know I don’t know I don’t know I don’t know.

So anxious. So worried that I’m going to hurt everyone and wreck their lives and make it so they are not ok later.

This is eating me alive. It has been for a couple of days now? Turbo anxiety. How am I hurting everyone?

I want to run away. I want to disappear. I want to go somewhere that no one knows me. (Good luck, motherfucker. Name a continent (other than Antarctica) and I will name countries I need to avoid if I want to make sure I don’t see anyone I know. I run into people I know most times I travel internationally. I know too many fucking people.)

I love you all. It’s just hard to run away from you.

I want to run away from my own self perception. Because I’m afraid I’m doing everything wrong. I’m afraid I’m hurting people. I’m afraid I’m a giant let down. I’m afraid that by trying to help I am going to make things worse. I’m afraid that by trying to help I am going to be hated so much that hating me becomes the problem instead of fixing the problem.

Fuck.

I think I’m going to take a week or so off from reaching out. I feel like I am hurting people by existing. Maybe if I hide in my house and keep my crazy to myself that will feel less true. Don’t interfere with other peoples lives. Even if there are problems.

It isn’t my place.

So frustrated. Whine. Moan. Fuss.

I love my cat, but senility is rough. She wanders around crying a lot. She won’t allow me to give her attention, she just cries like the most unloved thing ever. This noise is contributing to why I am losing my mind. (Yes, she is now medicated for pain.)

The bathroom tiles that I carefully tried to reorder came in wrong. So… now we don’t have a consistent kind of tile for the flooring. And the place I bought the tile from posts EVERYWHERE that any mistakes are not their fault and they do not do exchanges or refunds. So now I’m kind of pissed. The bathroom floor was not meant to be a hodge podge. Oh fucking well I guess.

Everything about this remodel is frustrating and making me crazy. I’m so exhausted.

I’m back to the point of passing out unconscious before 8pm and I’m waking up between 2 and 4am. This is not good. I feel like I desperately need naps in the middle of the day and I just don’t let myself rest when there are workers in the house. So I’m feeling shittier by the day.

Sometimes I feel very cranky about waking up in the middle of the night and going to the bathroom and seeing emails about how I’m not living up to what people want from me.

I’ve been thinking about what I want to accomplish in 2017. Because I’m neurotic like that. I think that it doesn’t matter how much I would like to branch out socially… I’m going to need to cut my expectations.

I’m so tired and cranky and the kids need to be less of an after thought.

Shit.

I’m not good at boredom. That may be an understatement of magnificent proportions. I’m not good at sitting around and waiting on, well, anything.

But in the long run of my life I need a down year. I need to not travel (even though my family keeps saying they want to go somewhere next year–I don’t. Go without me) and I need to rest. Or I’m going to get much worse physically and then old age is… not going to be so much of a possibility.

I’m feeling very resentful about the changing metrics in my head. For most of my life I have focused on what work I could do and what connections I could make. Self care hasn’t ever hit my priority list. Sleeping, eating, resting… those are all things that other people do. But if you skip those steps you don’t live very long. For most of my life speeding up how soon I will die has been a goal. These days… I’d like to see what my kids do with their futures. That requires staying alive. Oh shit. NOT FAIR, MOTHERFUCKERS.

I’m awake and hurting really bad and I have to drive to fucking Berkeley today. I drove to Alameda over the weekend and that took a toll. I’m so grateful I got to bail on a trip to Oakland this week. So only three times of driving north in two weeks instead of four. I feel like such a baby. It hurts so much. My low back, my neck, and my arms are all in revolt.

Was the driving worth it? I wish I hadn’t bothered trying the Kickstarter launch party. I felt so stupid and awkward and inappropriate that I didn’t actually talk to anyone and it was a lot of driving just to feel more of how stupid I feel in the bay area. I’ve lived around tech culture since middle school. Put me in a hacker space and I feel the “Oh, you’re one of the dumb kids” aura permeate. I’m an idiot who has completely internalized that computer people are smarter than me and I kind of hate them for it.

I don’t actually think they are smarter than me. But I have decades of hostility built up from so many of them treating me like I am stupid. “Oh, you can’t talk the specifics of a motherboard. You must be stupid.”

I shouldn’t have bothered to try that party. It was a waste of spoons. I’m really frustrated with myself.

I thought I might feel brave. I was so wrong. I didn’t understand that the cafe was in a hackerspace.

I’m tired and sad. Christmas is this coming weekend and I just want to cry. I’m getting the tasks I’m supposed to do done. Mostly. Sorta. It’s a shitty, truncated year. I am skipping a bunch of steps and trying to feel ok about it and mostly failing. I’m not feeling a lot of Christmas magic. I’m feeling frustrated and angry that my house is still ripped apart.

I am so god damn tired of not being able to walk through my house without hurting myself because there is no god damn space to get the kids stuff out of the way. They dump everything in the walkway every day because that is the only clear space to play. I am losing my fucking mind. I feel angry all the time.

They have internalized that toys aren’t really supposed to be spread out in their sleeping room. God help me. I WANT THE FUCKING PLAY ROOM BACK.

I want the playroom back. I want the playroom back. I want the playroom back. Toys stay in the play room. Mostly. Like 85% and THAT’S PRETTY FUCKING AWESOME COMPARED TO HOW THINGS ARE GOING RIGHT NOW.

My laptop is a brick. If the cord unplugs it shuts off.

I’m feeling distinctly whiny right about now.

My dishwasher is still god damn broken. It’s been broken since before Thanksgiving. Merry Fucking Christmas. Wash dishes till your hands bleed from dryness, motherfucker.

My hands hurt so much.

I understand my mother so much more now.

Doesn’t help that I gauged my pinkie cuticle on the blade of a blender so moving my pinkie at all sucks. Whine. Whine. Whine.

I’m feeling really sad and overwhelmed and angry. I’m so tired. Nothing I do is good enough.

I want to stop showing up for anyone and anything. I feel so frustrated and angry and incompetent and unworthy and stupid and worthless.

I can’t do anything right so why do I keep fucking trying so hard. What is the point? I just want to put my head down and cry for a few weeks.

My kids are getting to the point where they aren’t coping well anymore. I’m not handling having my kid cry and scream at me for extended periods. First it was that they wanted to buy more candy. (No. We’ve had an obscene amount of sugar this week. No. We don’t need to buy yet more damn candy.) Then it was a huge tantrum over the car seat. Because apparently it is now a baby seat. Motherfucker your sibling sat in that fucking seat till she was 8. It isn’t a baby seat. (I didn’t actually call my kid motherfucker in person. BUT IT IS MY BLOG AND I GET TO VENT MY FUCKING SPLEEN SOMEWHERE.) Then it was that I was a horrible person because I was repeating something over and over so I didn’t forget it. I was invading their air space. (Their favorite god damn hobby is repeating an obnoxious word hundreds of times in a row. But if I repeat something so I don’t forget it in the next three minutes, I’m evil.) Then it was that I am cruel and terrible because I turned the radio on because I was TIRED OF BEING BITCHED AT NON STOP.

Kiddo spent a lot of time fussing and crying yesterday. So by bedtime when the kid was a melty puddle of fuss and they asked to please sleep in my room… I said yes. This is a kid who is struggling like fuck right now. They are trying to reach out for connection.

When we got back from the car trip that involved me screaming, “FINE. EVERYTHING IS TERRIBLE AND YOUR LIFE SUCKS. I KNOW. CAN YOU PLEASE JUST SHUT UP ABOUT IT FOR A WHILE” kiddo really wanted to go hide in their room and reject me because I told them to shut up so I am the devil. I sat in kiddo’s doorway and asked if they were ready for a hug. They said, “Why should I hug someone who tells me to shut up?” I said, “You don’t have to hug me. That’s never required. But I’m the only mama you are going to have. I know I suck sometimes. But do you feel better when I hug you?” Kiddo skittered across the room and launched into my arms.

I wasn’t going to tell kiddo to get out of my room last night. They needed the closeness, even if I wanted space.

That’s a lot of the dance in my life. I either need more or less space than other people so I just… never really feel comfortable. I spend a lot of time consciously ignoring what I need in favor of what other people need because they are more important.

And thus my back hurts like a mother fucker.

I can’t have pot because I’m driving to Berkeley. I’m bringing my Bonus Kids home. Because I’m loaded with patience, right?

I have our lovely baby sitter scheduled this afternoon. I’m honest with myself that I need some god damn help right now. Thank you, oh kind baby sitter. You are my only hope of being a nice mother.

I’m tired of feeling like an incompetent, stupid, loser all day long. I feel like I’m not getting anything right. I feel like I fuck everything up because I’m impatient and stupid stupid stupid.

Why is stupid such a thing right now? I’m not sure. But it’s hitting me over the head hard. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid.

I keep making mistakes in the remodel processing stuff. I’m told to go to the store and get “all the stuff” for a given part of a project. I go to the store and ask for help. They always neglect to tell me about some stuff I need. Then the contractors act pissy and inconvenienced because I have most but not all of a thing. Or I have the wrong number or I have something that the previous company told me to buy but this company says is wrong and can’t be used so I bought a bunch of shit I can’t use and now what the fuck do I do with it.

I’m so frustrated and tired. I have asked for a shopping list of parts over and over and over and over and over. Instead I’m constantly told, “Hey we need ____ part tomorrow.” Then I go to the store and it’s a 3 day window before it can arrive. Then I’m the fuck up.

I’m so frustrated and upset.

We have an upcoming visit with Noah’s parents. I feel like I’d rather shove my head through a window than drive to fucking San Francisco (which hurts) for these assholes who will only come through town on their way to a three month cruise. After they couldn’t be bothered going on a one week cruise with us because they couldn’t be “away from the farm”. Only they went on a two week cruise later in the same month we went.

I’m a petty bitch. I know it. But I’m vindictive and petty and god damnit sometimes I just fucking am. Fuck these people.

I’m utterly exhausted. I’m not seeing people I like because I’m too fucking tired. Why spend spoons on people who make me hate being alive? Oh yeah. Because they are family.

The entire concept of family needs to be set on fire.

Because my kids deserve to be supported in having a relationship with 2/3 of their living grandparents if that is in any way feasible. It really doesn’t matter how I feel about them. My feelings are really not the most important set here.

I’ll do my crying about it off stage. Then put my big girl panties on and get through it. Because my kids need it.

Something that bugs me is: I encourage other people to not do things that hurt or bug them. I tell them that their feelings matter. But I act very much like my feelings don’t matter. So many things hurt me that it isn’t fair to the people around me to avoid all of them. I have to suck it up so I’m not mean and selfish.

I’m pissy that I had to miss Winter Bash because my kids didn’t feel good. I don’t get to see those people much at all. I was looking forward to it for months.

Oh well.

I feel sad and ungrateful that the visits I have had this month aren’t enough to buoy me up into cheerfulness. I feel like I’m letting my friends down.

I’m so tired. I feel like such a complete failure. Everything is feeling like a horrible burden. I don’t even like or enjoy eating. It’s another fucking chore I have to do or I will have big problems. I feel resentful of everything right now.

I feel resentful of the god damn traffic I have to sit in today. Fuck you, Berkeley. Arriving at 8:30 really sucks. I get all the school and work traffic. Shit. Shit. shit.

I’m driving up there solely because it is the only way I can find out the results of the genetic testing that should help me figure out why I metabolize medications so weird. Cheers. Then I get to wait hours and hours before having lunch with a friend. I’m grateful to see the friend. I don’t want to bring my shitty attitude. But I’m feeling super stressed about the day.

I feel like a raging asshole because my wonderful friend asked to meet at a vegan restaurant. I feel really guilty that I am going to need to pre-eat meat right before arriving and just kind of pretend to eat with them. I’m not having a day where I can eat fucking vegan food and be ok. I’ll fucking kill someone.

Meat. Meat. Meat.

It has been interesting to learn things like that about my behavior. No really, being vegan is not an option if I want to keep the violence in my life to a minimum. I spend so much time feeling ravenously, painfully hungry that I’m just god damn evil. I can’t do it.

But many of my friends are vegan. So I try to shut the fuck up and not complain. I’ll tell you the truth though, internet. I fee like shit when I try to eat vegan meals. I can have some meat free meals sometimes (I seriously eat meat every fucking day and usually multiple times a day in order to feel ok) but I balance them by eating almost entirely meat other meals that day.

Meat is kinda a multivitamin if you have deficiency issues. It makes sense that my shitty body doesn’t do well without it.

Why do I feel so guilty, why do I feel like it makes me a raging asshole that I am not constitutionally suited to eating a vegan diet? Why do I treat this like a moral failing? Why do I treat this as an affront to my friends?

Because I do have more of an impulse towards conformity than I want to admit. God fucking damn it all to hell.

I feel I should be more flexible and it is a major personality failing that I am so god damn rigid in my needs. Geez, why don’t I just work harder at adapting. Because I’m a raging bitch in constant pain when I don’t eat meat.

I don’t take the validation of doctors who have been life long vegetarians telling me that I genuinely need meat as sufficient. Nope. I’m a failure. “Some people adapt well to a vegetarian or vegan diet. Not all people. You need meat.” No, I’m a moral failure because I can’t figure out how to be ok on just plants. Come on dude, don’t try to justify my tasty tasty murder.

I keep thinking about this video and getting pissy because I am not noticing an uptick in energy in this post-period few days. Fuck everything. I’m on day god damn 8. Where is my fucking rebound.

There’s something that Noah asked me to do. I’m supposed to do it daily. I’ve missed two days this week and I am so so so so so so so so so so so so so so so so so pissy about it. I’m feeling super angry. I get to stuff that in a box.

I’m feeling angry and tired of taking care of things or people. I have to constantly be worrying about what the people around me want and need. I want to punch holes in every wall and break every window in the house.

But I won’t. Because that would be scary for other people and one musn’t cause other people to feel fear or you are evil and should die.

I’m not enjoying being in my head very much right now.

In this minute I cannot comprehend that I have ever felt calm or ok. I feel flooded with bad feelings. Today would have been a therapy day if my darn therapist didn’t think she gets to have a personal life and friends of her own. Geez. what the fuck. Obviously I’m kidding. I wished her well and sent her a Christmas card and I’ll see her when she gets back.

I don’t know how to deal with the fact that mostly in life I’m trying to sit on what I think. A friend came over recently and I had way more “Oh god here are the things I’m fussing about but I can’t write about” shit stored up than was really polite. Thanks, P. You were super patient. I assume it was boring and obnoxious.

I feel frustrated, sad, and stupid.

So very stupid.

Lessons I’ve learned

This is a very edited version of something I wrote for a particular person. I took the shell of that message and expanded it here for my own record keeping.

This year has been kind of a horrible and traumatizing adventure.

The line between what makes a “friend” and what makes a lover/partner are often difficult and hard to see. I freely say I love you to my friends and they say it back. There is hand holding and snuggling even when I go through long periods of monogamy because my friends are the reason I stayed alive through a multitude of traumatic experiences.
With that in the background Noah and I met and started our marriage with an open relationship. We agreed to be monogamous through the breeding period (for lots of complicated reasons) with the idea that we would probably date later. About five years ago (when did Occupy happen?) I asked for us to open a bit and try things out. We proceeded to hurt each other a lot with the choices we were making around dating and we decided to close the relationship.
I have a variety of extreme mental illness problems. Treating myself like I matter is not easy for me. I would much rather sustain physical damage than inconvenience someone. As part of the agreement for being monogamous we agreed that I needed to provide sex for Noah at least ten times a month. The quota was hard to fill. It meant I had sex that was significantly painful on a regular basis. I was not honest about how this was impacting me. I didn’t want to hurt his feelings.
I mean, that’s true and not true. I’ve written all over my blog about having problems with it. But I also said I wanted to do it. I’m very conflicted on this issue.
Anyway. I came back from the road trip and discovered that six months of having my body be mine was absolutely transformative. I hit the wall. I’m done taking one for the team.
 
I had been bottling up a lot of desires for a long time. (I’m extremely sadistic. Noah is not masochistic.) He is kinda sorta willing to let me hit him if I really want… but he doesn’t enjoy it and I feel like a really gross person. Instead I have a long-term friend/play partner who likes to be kicked in the nuts, who wants me to slice him open with scalpels and drink his blood.
I started negotiation for the right to play with my friend. Then I went to visit a friend out of state and I cheated. When I say I cheated I mean I spanked two friends at a party. I did not have Noah’s consent to play outside the marriage. I didn’t have sex. I didn’t even kiss anyone. But I cheated anyway. It hurt Noah a lot.
Then I announced high handedly that I was done following rules and I was going to go date. I did. A lot. For about three months. Most of the people I dated are people I have known for many years. They are all deeply ingrained in my life. Some of them I have known for literally my entire adult life. Some of them were brand new and had boundaries Noah didn’t like.
 
By the end of this Noah had spent a lot of time screaming at me in the middle of the night, sobbing hysterically on the floor while wanting to die, and slamming walls to shut me up when I was arguing nastily with him. I can be pretty fucking nasty.
I made a deal with the devil. I made a deal I couldn’t keep and there were consequences for me and I didn’t communicate about them. I just completely exploded.
Noah asked me to stop going on solo dates. Noah asked that we not do solo sex unless we were at a party together and we just happen to also want to play with friends while there.
My friends know in ridiculous detail how these fights went because I usually wrote all the details down the next day. Which is why all my friends and play partners stopped calling for a few months. They were all, “Krissy stop fucking around and go fix your marriage.”
It has been a solid wall of support for I’m the asshole of the year. I’m not proud.
Hey friends, thank you for caring about me enough to tell me that I have to fix my marriage. That is loving me in a real and true way that isn’t selfish. I really appreciate it.
On the day Noah asked me to marry him he asked me to be his slave. I told him not yet. I said we weren’t ready for those kinds of roles yet. But I wanted to be someday. All this year we have been intensely focused on “It’s time to shit or get off the pot.” We’ve had written agreements in place for a while now that it isn’t ok to do ownership or possessiveness with other people at all.
That’s something that all of my partners know about. Casual sex: excellent. Intensely loving friendship: sure thing. But there are hard lines. Noah is getting a lot more honest about what he wants from me too. Last night we had a really excellent experience with a dear friend who helped us do an intense amount of processing.
Noah doesn’t want us to date alone. At all. I think having it be very clear that Noah wants nearly-monogamy is useful. I think that I have been kind of moving along on the assumption that I married a poly guy and I threw a fit a few years back and closed the relationship on him. There were things exploding. It wasn’t good.
We learn lessons in stages.
It probably isn’t going to be happening soon but someday we will have sex with our friends again. But we’ll find ways to do it together. I don’t get to have a boyfriend ever again. He doesn’t want to have a girlfriend ever again.
Which is an interesting way of phrasing it.
I need to go put some serious effort into learning how to get my intimacy needs met without sex. That sounds kind of obnoxious, I’ll be frank.
But I’ve learned harder subjects.
I hurt Noah a lot this year. I need to learn from this experience and not do it again. We are still working on the forgiving bit.
I’m utterly exhausted but I feel glowy and at peace. We didn’t sleep much. The kids went to their Bonus Family so we could have the space to talk without having to think about their needs. We also fasted for 24 hours. Shocking that it didn’t make us cranky.
Instead I feel like we were able to be very clear about some things that we have been talking around for a long time.
That’s all I’ve got for now.

Identity

My Jenny (she ain’t Jenny to you: she’s Jennifer) has been trying to convince me that the story of me isn’t about my family or my parents or what happened to me. She wants me to think of my story as being about what I have done with agency.

I see what you’re doing there.

What have I done with agency? How far back in my life does this go?

I’m going to try and talk positively about myself. So this is going to sound like bragging and I need to not give a fuck.

I am generous. I have spent my life trying to help people as much as I can. From when I was quite young I was always the person who jumped up to help if I noticed someone struggling with something, no matter what it is. I remember when I was 7 or 8 I noticed some women in a grocery store struggling to open the stupid plastic vegetable bags. (Now that I’m all old and I wash dishes and I have dry skin I get it.) I talked my mom into staying in the grocery store for extra time so I could stand there and open plastic bags for people. I mean, it’s kind of a stupid example and it isn’t one of my biggest helping people moments in my life but that’s the point. I don’t just help people in big ways.

I have helped a lot of people in big ways. I have given away a fairly extreme amount of money at this point and I’m going to give a lot more. I give of my physical service. I show up and help people who are struggling. I’ve had friends who needed to move house, but they were disabled and they literally could not do the work for themselves. So I showed up and did it all. Because I was not going to let them suffer. When my friend was in her absolute lowest place of dealing with her alcoholism I went to her house and cleaned up years of nasty filth because I knew that if she was in a nice clean house it would help her stop feeling like a disgusting loser who deserved every bad thing. (It worked. She’s in a fantastic place in her life now. It isn’t because of me but I’m absolutely part of what helped her.)

I provide emotional support to a lot of people. I have personally been the recipient of many incest stories that were never previously spoken aloud and that number is only going to increase with time. This matters. I help people who are highly traumatized feel normalized and acceptable in their struggles. That’s a god damn big deal.

I was a really good teacher. Even though I tend to not feel safe or comfortable almost ever I am extremely good at creating environments where other people feel safe and comfortable. I can’t count how many children I’ve helped cope with huge life problems and this number will only go up.

I am patient. Not universally. Not in every situation with every person. But I am very patient. This has been a big deal in a variety of job settings and personal relationships. I can sit and listen through things that bore the crap out of other people or traumatize other people and I can be patient and present with where someone needs me to be.

I am capable of imagining how things “should be” despite never experiencing it myself and I can hand a good experience to other people. I’m not perfect. Sometimes I absolutely fail at this because other people have a very different picture in their head of how things “should be” and I hurt them. I am so very sorry.

I am a loyal friend. I keep people. I reach out over and over and over again to people. I come back despite problems and fights and disagreements. I don’t let feelings of discomfort be the reason I abandon people once I feel bonded. I don’t end relationships until there is a Very Good Reason. Instead I write letters, emails, Christmas cards, and I drive all the fuck over the place to maintain contact with people.

I spend a lot of time explaining to people why they need to understand the points of view of people who are different than them. I’m very good at this. I’m good at helping people see the connections that exist between different groups. I can find compassion for almost anyone and I’m good at helping other people understand that they need to find more compassion than they might be otherwise inclined to feel.

I am a good mother. Not because of anything in particular that I do, mothering isn’t like that, but for very similar reasons to why I was a good teacher. I excel at really looking at people and adapting to why their needs are unique. I don’t really treat my kids the same because they have different personalities and needs. I try to give them what they need individually.

I am better and better at not blaming other people for my emotions and problems. I see how my ups and downs are because of things inside me and not because of exterior stimuli. I can explain this in detail at speed in most cases. It’s been an incredibly hard skill to learn and I’m not done improving it.

When I screw up I apologize without deflecting responsibility. Yup, I did that. I hurt you. Yup. I’m sorry. That was wrong. Is there anything I can do to help repair the damage that I caused?

I do not hit my children as a matter of course. Which is apparently shocking to a large segment of the population because people comment regularly on how they expect me to do so. I slapped my daughter once. It was a grievous error. I have put tremendous effort into making sure I don’t let myself get that angry since and I will put more effort in that direction with every passing year. I do not justify my lack of control by saying it is her fault and I do not justify my lack of control by saying that I was trying to teach her a lesson. I think that acknowledging that I completely fucked up and lost control is a big deal. I cannot count how many parents have justified hitting their children in front of me. No, it’s not ok.

I am a hard worker. Every boss I have ever had has commented on how they have never had an employee who works as diligently as me. Didn’t matter whether I was working in a library, theatre, fast food restaurant, retail store, cleaning houses, or teaching school. I work and work and work. I’m really proud of this.

I am good at organizing things. I see patterns very quickly and I can manage space unusually well. It’s a visual perceptive ability that I am grateful for every day.

I have dealt with a pretty wide array of physical and mental health problems. I haven’t been able to “cure” myself but I put tremendous effort into improving.

I prosecuted my father, putting an end to his ability to rape children. I feel proud of this.

I have protected my children from my violent, rapist family.

I create beauty in the world. My house and yard were frankly ugly as shit when I moved in. Now my house is pretty magical. My yard is so beautiful that people who were driving by stopped and asked to buy my house. I said no.

I managed to travel extensively even when I was living on $14,400/year. I save money fantastically well and as a result I manage to make every penny count. I have managed to significantly increase Noah’s wealth during our marriage. Sure, this year I exploded our debt profile but I’ll have it paid off in five years (including my entire mortgage). Watch and see.

When a person told me to my face that they were going to threaten me whenever they felt like (and they offered to physically attack Noah) I managed to still deescalate the situation such that no violence occurred. Sure, I got called an evil racist because I described their behavior as inappropriate and said they should apologize, but you can’t win every fight. I feel good that despite the fact that I wanted to fly off the handle and beat the ever loving shit out of this person they confirmed that they never felt threatened by me. They felt traumatized, but maybe I can’t save you from feeling traumatized by situations you create.

I feel good about telling a child that when you feel scared and upset it is ok to cry. That is healthy. It is appropriate. When someone hits you and tells you not to cry that is abuse. I feel very good about being a voice expressing that sentiment to a child.

I’m proud of the road trip. I learned a lot. My children learned a lot. I did a fantastic amount of work to make that happen.

I feel weirdly proud of the library I’ve managed to acquire. Which is a shitty thing to feel proud of because it means I’m proud of spending money and that’s weird. But my library is incredibly diverse. My library normalizes a lot of human experiences. My library encourages thinking about a lot of different parts of life. I have created the home schooling environment of my dreams. I really have arrived at where I wanted to get. I picked this goal at 17 and I have diligently worked towards it ever since. I feel proud of how many skills I managed to pick up and consciously work towards so that I can be good at this.

I feel proud of the progress I have made in harming myself less over time. It isn’t that I have high self esteem and it isn’t that I am psychologically healthy but I do less damage to myself over time. That has taken enormous effort on my part.

I feel proud of myself for reaching out to someone who sexually harmed me and asking them to make it right. I couldn’t do it in every case with every person who hurt me, but I feel very proud of doing it once.

I believe that even if I do not think of myself as “a good person who sometimes does bad things” there is benefit to thinking of myself as an asshole who often does the right thing. I believe this has value because I am not justifying my fuck ups and sweeping them under the rug in the name of “but I’m good”. Instead I take full responsibility for all the harm I cause and I continue to fight like hell to do positive things. To me that is a healthier balance than believing I’m good and kind of ignoring the harm I cause. I like that balance.

I like how strong I am. I like that despite horrible pain I work fiercely and intensely and with dedication on whatever task is put in front of me. I’m not saying that I think all people with chronic pain should act like this… I think there is still some self harm going on in my behavior. But never the less I have to find ways to like myself and I like that I am capable of putting “But this is important” over “I hurt and I don’t want to”.

I am proud that I didn’t let a horrifying childhood break me entirely.

Since I’m trying to list shit: I feel like I have had a rather good track record on picking people to date. It isn’t that every person I’ve ever dated has been perfect, but I have been good at picking people who are loving, supportive, and usually good with boundaries. Given the relationships I saw modeled as a child… I’ve really picked fantastic people to date. Go me. (And my marriage was even smarter. Damn I picked a good spouse.)

I have not allowed my overwhelming longing for my mother trap me in abusive cycles. That’s a big deal.

That’s enough for now. I’m supposed to write some affirmations. I have the pushiest damn friends ever. (I love you. Thank you for caring about me and giving me homework.)

I am patient and generous.

I am a good mother for my children. (Which is to say, I don’t think I’d be as good for every kid… these things are complicated. Ok, you aren’t supposed to justify affirmations or minimize them but I’m still me.)

I am loved.

I create beauty and connection.

I am strong emotionally and physically.

I am good at loving people.

I am an outstanding teacher.

I fight the good fight.

I have a lot to give.

 

I’m going to sit down with the birthday book my friends gave me and remind myself of why other people love me. Thank you for loving me so much that you will go through so much effort to help me stay alive. I am grateful beyond the scope of expression.