“Opportunities to find deeper powers within ourselves come when life seems most challenging.” Joseph Campbell
Lately, I haven’t been as consistent as I’d like with my blogging. I debated with myself about this post. I don’t want pity, and I don’t want to whine. I just want to be honest about where my head has been. And perhaps there are others out there who are going through similar upsets or who can relate and know they are not alone.
As you know if you’ve been reading this blog for a while, I experienced a jolt to my emotional and mental sense of well-being this summer. My mother attempted suicide, and my reaction to her act was like an emotional explosion.
I began remembering things that I haven’t thought about in years, memories of my childhood and teen years, memories of my mother. I began thinking of familiar memories from a different perspective.
I made the decision to not have a relationship with my mother, at least right now
As a result of all of this, I feel like I have been peeled down to my core and have been left wondering, who am I?
My mother taught me certain things: I wasn’t good enough, I wasn’t creative, I was lazy, I was selfish, I was like “a lump on a log.” If others knew what I was really like, she’d say, they wouldn’t like me.
Who am I if I don’t view myself through my mother’s eyes? If I don’t believe what my mother said I was, who am I?
It has been a difficult time. I have done a myriad of things to soothe my soul. The bedtime anger has lessened. Probably someone seeing me in my daily life would note no difference in my demeanor.
But just the other day, while I was taking a shower, I became infused with anger. It felt like it was burning me, like my heart was going to burst from it.
I cried because I didn’t know what to do with the anger. There’s no one to foist it upon. No one deserves it. Certainly no one wants to hear all of it.
One thing I’ve been doing to deal with it is journaling, some by hand in a lovely book Larry gave me, and some on the computer.
When I’m angry or upset or very anxious, writing on the computer suits me better: it’s faster, and the sound of the keys clicking helps to calm me.
Much of what goes in my journal is for my eyes only. But here’s a bit of what I’ve written lately.
It’s personal. It’s embarrassing. But it’s a way to show what I’m thinking:
I am stuck. I am sad. I am depressed. I am lazy. I am immobile. I do what I have to do, absolutely have to do, and a little of what I want to do, and then it’s sleep. It’s nothing. I have a nothing life. I have a small life. And I don’t know how to get a big one. I want a reason to get up in the morning. I need something to push me through life. Oh, God, have mercy on me, please.
And then later:
My past is over. I am 51 years old and it’s time to do what I want to do with my life. Not selfishly. But I need to stop adding that. “Not selfishly.” I am not a selfish person usually. It’s OK that I want to do something with my life that makes me happy and content and in the flow. I want to be in the flow. I want a good life, a big life.
What is a big life to me? I’m not yet sure. But it’s more than I’m living now. It’s doing what I want. Doing. Things. I. Want. To. Do. Loving others. Being honest. Being compassionate. Helping to make the world better. Being in the flow. Being in the flow. Not letting fear and fatigue stop me. Not letting depression or OCD or anxiety stop me. Living in spite them. Living a big life in spite of them. In spite of my past. Living a big life.
Yes, I’m struggling. But I have hope. Things will get better. I am putting one foot in front of the other, every day. I will get better.
I will learn more about who I am and how to be in this world so that I have a positive effect on those around me.
Part of my journey is rethinking how I’m spending my time and what I’m writing. With that in mind, I’ll be starting a new posting schedule, changing to two times a week, Mondays and Thursdays. I won’t post again this week, so I’ll be back here on Monday, Sept. 8.
I’d like to devote Bringing Along OCD to the subjects that I originally started out with. I want to use this blog as a form of mental health advocacy.