Leaning into the Emotion (Also known as I Hate Change)

Today was my last day of my internship. This sounds like a celebratory thing, doesn’t it? I feel like that would make sense, because people keep asking me how I feel. Am I excited? Is it awesome to be done?

I’m just going to be honest. It’s really cool that I made it through a year as a school psychologist intern. I’m proud of that. But no, I’m not excited to be done.

I’m sad.

This has been building ever since I graduated last month and my team surprised me with a basket full of gifts, a “school psychologist survival kit” if you will. That day, I broke down crying in J’s office because I knew that change was coming.

Part of it is that I still don’t know what the future is going to look like for me. I am waiting to hear whether or not I will be offered a job that I made it to the second round of interviews for. The stakes feel high here, and I don’t really have a plan if this one doesn’t pan out yet because I don’t have any other interviews scheduled right now and everything else I’ve interviewed for has been filled. Did I mention that I’m competing against my best friend for this job?

So yes, that’s weighing on me. I am oscillating between feeling like bad news is right around the corner and feeling hopeful that they will pick me, between just about to tip over the edge and stable. I hate this waiting game. Schools shouldn’t be allowed to put us through this.

That’s not all of it though. I think the bigger part was knowing that after today, it would never be like this again. I was blessed with a team that I loved working with. My supervisor, the learning disabilities consultant, and the social worker were each wonderful in their own way. I took something different away from working with them, learned different skills.

I’ve been working with my supervisor on and off for three years. He mentored me through all of my practicums and I’ve learned so much from him. I respect him as a school psychologist and I really like him as a person. Our personalities meshed well and we spent so much time joking around.

So many times recently, I tried to insist that I would stay in touch with all of them. We’ve made assurances that we will have lunch, that I will text them with updates on the job search.

The truth is though, no matter if that happens, it will not be the same. There is quite an age difference between myself and them, so I can’t imagine spending too much time with them outside of the walls of work. They have families and responsibilities. And now we do not have work to connect us anymore.

I knew all day that I was living my life as an intern on borrowed time and once I walked out that door it all changed. Which made me so sad, because for all the stress and questioning of my own abilities, I really loved my internship overall.

Not only that, but these are the schools I went to as a kid. This is the district that taught me for thirteen years before welcoming me back as a graduate student.  There’s a personal connection there.

I went in this morning and just soaked it up. I joked around with my teammates, we went across the street to where the intermediate school was having a fair day and played games with the kids. Then we came back and got ice cream. My colleagues teased me about being a “quitter.” Eventually, it was time to part ways. I gave everyone hugs and made it out the door and to the car before I burst into tears.

I let myself cry the whole way to my babysitting job. Being with the girls reenergized me, gave me a distraction, but the sadness is back again now. As I type this, I’m feeling my eyes well with tears.

I’m heartbroken to leave. I really am. And it’s killing me.

I’m not used to letting myself feel my pain. It feels counterproductive to healing for me to express anger or sadness or fear, even though I know instinctively that they need to come out. When emotions threaten to rise, I stuff them back down.

Except J tells me that I need to give myself permission to feel. She tells me this all the time, and I’m trying to listen to her. But it hurts so much. It hurts to let the emotion work its way through your body. To feel without fighting it.

And I wonder, why is this such a necessary evil? Why do I have to feel pain to feel better. It makes no sense. I don’t want to let the feelings of loss and fear overwhelm me. Yet I am. It’s a brand new experience.

So the tears come. The sadness radiates. I’m sitting here waiting for it to get free of me so I might feel some relief.I’m sensitive enough as it is on a good day.When your emotions are as intense as mine, the wait to survive sadness like this is interminable.

Hopefully tomorrow I’ll wake up feeling better. I really hate change.

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Stop Calling Suicide “Selfish”

Listen up, readers. I’ve got a bone to pick with the world. Something I’m so damn tired of having to say every time this topic begins to circulate the news.

SUICIDE. IS. NOT. A. SELFISH. DECISION.

We had two notable people take their own lives this week. Apparently that’s created a platform for others to utilize their right speak freely. I support free speech. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, I believe that.

However, it makes me really sad and disheartened to hear some of the things people choose to say and believe.

I know Val Kilmer has made some comments. I’m not even going to read them because I don’t feel like being triggered again today. That is not the moment that set me off on this rant. No, what got me all up in arms was when the mother of the family I babysit for wanted to talk about Anthony Bourdain and then proceeded to tell me how she felt like suicide was a selfish decision. She maintained that she felt this way because she’d been on the other side of it: her sister made an attempt many years ago.

Clearly, she’s got lingering and anger and hurt about her sister’s actions. I understand this. I understand the shock of learning you almost lost someone. I understand how someone’s confusion and fear about how a person could actually choose to end their life might translate into hurt and anger.

That’s honestly what I think causes most people to make this assertion of selfishness. A lack of visceral understanding. They have not experienced the thoughts and feelings of the suicidal individual. Suicidality is a place few people truly take up residence, and without living there you can’t adequately wrap your mind around the darkness and debilitating nature of the experience. To those on the outside, it just doesn’t compute.

Without that exposure, they focus on the feelings they have been gifted with when their loved one tries to or successfully kills himself. They assume that person’s motives were entirely self-serving, that those left behind should have been a greater factor in the decision. Surely, if they’d just thought about the people in their life a little more, they wouldn’t have made such an awful choice.

She left behind children whose lives will never be the same. He left behind a wife who is broken by this. How selfish. How terrible. 

Do you know what selfish means? I’m going to tell you what selfish means. I looked it up, because I think the specificity of the definition is important when we tend to throw words haphazardly around in this society and those words only marginally fit what we mean to say.

Selfish: Concerned excessively or exclusively with oneself seeking or concentrating on one’s own advantage, pleasure, or well-being without regard for others.

See, here’s the thing. As someone who has battled intense, recurrent suicidal thoughts for a period of years, I can tell you that most people considering suicide aren’t making this choice or even just thinking about suicide in absence of those around them. They aren’t sitting there thinking forget about my parents or my kid will just have to deal. No, what they’re thinking is that their loved one will be better off without them. What they’re thinking is that they have absolutely no value to add to that person’s life, and that they deserve better.

When I think about suicide, I am wholly convinced that people will be sad for a short time, but that ultimately they will move on and be better for it without me to burden them. No amount of reasoning will convince me otherwise.

Suicidal individuals are thinking about their families and friends all the time. They’re constantly weighing the fierceness of their love up against a voice that’s constantly reminding them of their worthlessness and the hopelessness of their circumstances. Trying to decide when the scale has tipped in favor of that voice, when the intense pain has won out.

If anything, they hang on as long as they do because of the people that they love.

It’s honestly ridiculous to suggest anything different. As if people who consider or commit suicide just forget the rest of the world to focus on the the pleasure or advantage of their choice. This isn’t abandoning your co-workers so that you can spend an afternoon at the beach. This is death.

 This, to me, is why the “selfish” moniker doesn’t fit.

I’ve said this before, but if people want to accuse those who kill themselves of being selfish for leaving other people behind and causing hurt, they’d better take a look in the mirror and admit that they are equally “selfish” for being exclusively concerned with their own hurt without any regard for the emotional pain of the person who hurt so badly that they took their own life. 

You try living amidst chronic battles with intense oscillating emotions that you cannot regulate and that began causing broken relationships, isolation, and emptiness as far back as high school. You try pushing forward when the voice of self-hatred in your head pushes back with loathing comments that just increase your fears that you truly will never be happy or successful and deserve the suffering you experience. You try feeling like you’re boxed in a corner, alone and out of options, unsure if the skills you’re learning now can ever compensate for the mistakes you made then. You try knowing the painful depression and anxiety will always come back. You might feel the desire kill yourself too, to disrupt the cycle of pain and finally find peace.

That doesn’t make us selfish. It makes us people who feel helpless, out of control. It makes us people who feel desperate.

By the way, I am in no way advocating that people should kill themselves. This is not a message purporting that we shouldn’t encourage others to seek help and try to overcome their demons. Of course, I want to find ways to decrease the number of people who commit suicide each year. If I didn’t, I wouldn’t still be here. Suicide is a rising problem that needs to be prevented.

What I am advocating is the way we use our voices, the message we send about suicide, so that we can better prevent it. How do we do that? This is what I believe:

First, stop calling people selfish. Especially those who have survived an attempt. It doesn’t help anyone or instill any motivation to keep fighting. You don’t shame someone into keeping them around by accusing them of not thinking of their loved ones. You don’t shame them after their death for not having the mental sustenance to keep fighting.

Instead, in the face of suicide, I think it’s important what we should really try to recognize the pain, fear, and confusion that person must be or have been feeling.  Genuinely try to find it within yourself to accept another person’s pain and listen to their perspective, even if you do not completely understand it. I’m not implying people can’t be hurt or angry when they lose someone. Hurt and tolerance can exist at the same time in the same mind.

The more the word selfish flies around, the more the stigma on suicide continues, the less willing people are going to be to actually ask for help. Why would a person admit to feeling suicidal if they feel that they will receive admonishment and anger in return? I know that as open as I am with others about my struggles, my suicidal thoughts are not a topic I’m willing to broach with almost anyone because I will not take the risk of being judged or criticized.

People need to be allowed to speak their truth, as hurtful as their words might be to hear. We have to be willing to hear and validate. People who consider suicide have enough self-directed shame and guilt, they don’t need any more added on from the people they are close to. Don’t give legs to the dozens of hurtful statements their inner voice is already screaming at them.

They need the kindness and love of others. They need to know that thinking about killing themselves doesn’t make them less deserving of support on the basis of “selfishness.”

Be present. When someone confesses to having suicidal ideation, be a source of support. Sit with the person. Remind them that they are not alone, as much as needed. Remind them of their importance to you.

You don’t have to say the right thing, just be with them.

Don’t abandon them because you’re overwhelmed by something you don’t get. That’s selfish, too. Be there.

Know the resources. If you don’t know how to help, direct that person to a person who can. Help them call a counselor or a doctor or another family member.

When that mother made that comment earlier, I stood there quietly, trying to decide whether or not to be honest about the depth at which her words hurt me. I wanted her to know that what she’d said was so far off the mark, and that I was now wracked with anxiety thinking that I was a selfish, bad person for having those thoughts. I didn’t say anything, because she doesn’t know about my history with suicide and I was afraid it would hurt our relationship if she did know.

No one should ever have to feel that way.

So think before you speak. Think before you assign the label of selfish to a story you don’t know the half of. You never know who is fighting what battle. Suicidal ideation is invisible to the eyes of others, and it will stay that way unless we as a society begin to change the way we approach the topic.

Image result for national suicide hotline

Reasons I Am Worth It

I had a rough time in therapy tonight. Well, I’ve just been having a rough time in general lately. Really really intense emotions coupled with some harsh negative thoughts have been debilitating for me.

It’s been a lot of suicidal ideation. Passively running through ways to end my life in my head. Yearning for an escape from this madness. I want it to be over. Suicide is a comfortable option that I am content to keep in my back pocket.

When I am in this mental state, I believe with conviction the voices of the minions. I am a bad person. I am not deserving of success or happiness. I am a worthless individual.

J is the powerful force who is there to counter those thoughts. She refuses to entertain them. She makes me come up with lists. In fact, she’s been doing this pretty much since we met.

Positive qualities. Reasons to live. Reasons I am worth it.

She did that last one tonight: reasons I’m worth it. It being…survival, at this point. I’m sure she’ll do it again since she pretty much told me she’d do it every week if she has to. 

As ideas sprung to my mind to share with her, the minions batted them away. I felt challenged to say positive things, because I wasn’t confident those things were true. J told me to say them even if they sounded like lies. I came up with some things, but it was really difficult for me.

I’m thinking, now, that I should make a list. One I can refer to in the future. So I’m just going to ignore all the discomfort that arises when I do this and get right to it.

Reasons I Have Worth as a Person

  1. I am kind to others. I like to find ways to make people smile and improve their day.
  2. I am kind to animals too. There have been many times people have been impressed at how their dog seemed at ease with me during an initial introduction.
  3. I am empathetic. I am able relate to other people’s problems and validate their feelings, since I’m so intricately familiar with my own.
  4. I am open-minded. As a favorite TV show character once said to describe herself, “I’m indecisive, because I see eight sides to everything.” As such, I try very hard not to judge others with different viewpoints. I can take any issue and pick it apart into tiny fragments when I am trying to determine my own perspective on it.
  5. I am responsible. I do what I say I am going to do. I follow through.
  6. I am persistent. I’ve survived this long. For every low point I’ve had, I always come back with a new plan to kick minion ass.
  7. Speaking of planning, I am super organized. I am able to visualize an organizational system for just about anything without difficulty: closets, desks, bookshelves. Give me some clutter, I’ll fix it up for you.
  8. I know how to self-advocate. I know how to ask for help when I need it. Just ask J. She’s no stranger to me asking for help.
  9. I am a hard worker. No one has ever argued this point. If given a task, I will do whatever it takes to achieve success. Grad school is a perfect example of that. Long days and endless papers later, I have my Master’s degree.
  10. On a similar vein, I have tons of initiative. My colleagues always praise my willingness to step up and ask if they need any assistance completing a task, instead of waiting to be assigned something.
  11. I picked a job that is all about finding good outcomes for kids by implementing strategies to promote growth.
  12. I am a caring grandchild. My grandfather needs a lot of help and I’ve been there to pay his bills, decorate the house, and go through the mail, among other things, for the last three years now.
  13. I do what I can to honor my other grandparents, to celebrate the people they were. I make it a point not to forget them.
  14. I am a positive role model to two little girls who I love so much. I am mindful of the way I talk to myself, the way I choose to problem solve. I try to teach them to be the best girls they can be.
  15. I write about and share my journey with others, something I do mainly for me but also in case it might help someone else feel less alone.
  16. I get really enthusiastic and passionate about the little things. When I said this in session, J asked me to elaborate and I froze. I told her holidays, because I can decorate like no other for Christmas or Easter. Since then, I’ve thought of some other times I was excited over small things. When I finished my first crochet project. When I order a new figurine for my collection from Amazon. Television shows! I can pretty much quote every episode of Friends from memory. J and I have had many laughs about that one.
  17. I am honest. I have never been a good liar, because my conscience won’t let me. There’s a good chance if you ask me a question, you’re getting an honest answer.
  18. I run toward the things that scare me.
    Related image Image result for pee into the wind friends
  19. I can find memes or .gifs that apply to any situation. I guess that makes me creative? Or silly? Not sure, but it seemed worth noting, since everyone loves a well-timed meme. Plus, this proves that I reach a whole new level of a Friends fanatic.
  20. I try to find the good in others. I try to believe the world is predominantly good.
  21. When I make mistakes, I always aim to learn from them.
  22. My intentions are usually good, in any situation.
  23. I am strong and I know how to tolerate difficult and intense feelings.
  24. I can show myself kindness. Not as often as I’d like, but I will go for a run, wrap myself in a blanket, repeat affirmations quietly, or meditate in the face of pain.
  25. I’m still here.

I think that there may be more reasons that I can’t think of right now. Perhaps I will revisit this list in the future and add to it. Until then, it’s a start.

It’s a start that I needed amidst some very difficult days. I’m hoping I will be seeing the light at the end of the tunnel soon.

As a follow-up, I’m going to count this as day 25 of the self-love challenge, since I haven’t added to that in a few months and it’s pretty relevant. Sue me. It works.

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If I Came With a Warning Sign

This post has been sitting in my drafts for over a month now. Maybe even two months at this point, I’m not sure.  It came about from a prompt that my blogger friend KD had completed, which inspired me. I thought it was a really intriguing question to consider: if I came with a warning sign, what would that sign say?

downloadRoad Sig

 

If you know anything about me at this point, you have to imagine that the little voice in my head automatically comes up with a variety of ideas, all of them very negative. I mean after all, it is a warning sign. That does not instill a person with feelings of hope and light.

The pictures above are meant in jest, but they seem incredibly appropriate to describe the kind of sign I imagine would represent me. Something that reflects the level of complexity, confusion, and frustration that is likely involved in being in my life.

Seriously, good luck. Even don’t understand what’s going on in my head sometimes.

Then there’s this one, which I dreamed up in my own mind.

Great intentions, sub-par execution.
Also known as: Well, you sure tried, but it didn’t work the way you planned. Again. Good job, loser.

I said that to J once during our session and she immediately corrected it. Because that’s what J does. She’s all about focusing on the good. She wouldn’t like the idea of there being a warning sign at all, I know it, because warning sounds remarkably close to judgement. 

So let’s try to reframe that a little.

The strangely convenient thing about me putting this post off as long as I have is that it now seems quite apropos now in light of the pit of depression I’ve been trying to surface from the last few days. One that knocked me off my feet for a whole weekend as I laid in my bed playing games on my phone.

I said I was cancelling my session. I didn’t do that. I considered skipping work, I didn’t do that. In fact, I actually went to an interview on Wednesday and did very well. Although I’m not quite there yet, I’m trying to get back into a groove of mindfulness, running, and choosing healthier foods.

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I don’t give up. One of my most redeeming qualities is that even though I have recurring bouts with the mental illness minions that knock me on ass, I always get back up. I come back from those awful feelings and keep going. A phoenix from the damn ashes.

That’s my warning sign:  You have to be prepared for the fact that on any given day, mental illness may come for me and stop me in my tracks. There may be days retreating from the world, a brief cessation of skills. But then, eventually, I keep moving forward. I am persistent.

Like I said about a week ago, I have survived everything that has been hard for me before.

I know there will continue to be stops, and I hate that, but that just means there will also be opportunities for me to go. To regain control, to get back on the skill train, and chug forward.

Warning: Healing in progress. 

 

Safe Space

Dear J,

On Tuesday morning, I typed out this message into the text box on our message thread: Hope you had a good holiday. I’m cancelling for Thursday. See you next week. I returned to it periodically all day, my thumb hovering over the send button.

But I never sent it. I couldn’t. I knew I didn’t deserve it, but I panicked at the thought of losing my precious hour.

As you pointed out today, I sent a very different message the following day. One where I asked you to tell me that it was still okay to come to therapy, even after screwing up as much as I had. I told you I didn’t believe it, so I needed to hear it from you. And you delivered. You told me it was okay. You told me you hoped I’d be there and that you’d see me tomorrow.

Skipping therapy was supposed to be a consequence, a punishment, but you told me I only deserved kindness. You always want to tell me about the kind things I deserve.

So I went to see you today. I told you every awful thought and feeling I’d had, as I always do. And you were there for me, as you always are.

Excuse my language, but thank fucking goodness for that.

I told you I hated myself, you made me find kinder ways to express my feelings. I told you I wanted to die, you made me list reasons to stay alive. I told you all of the negative judgements, you made me list all the good things about me.

You assured me that it was okay, that I did nothing wrong, about 1,000 times. In the face of every hateful word I spout towards myself, you are fastidiously determined to make sure I see the good in me. You believe in that good, even when I can’t.

We talked about changing the visual for the minions, how I would imagine fighting them off. Now I realize, you’re my secret weapon. When all else fails, when everything is crumbling, you are the lifeline that keeps me in the fight. When I find it impossible to use my skills, when I question the point of it, you step in as the last line of defense.

That’s what you did today. And though I’m not completely well, I have settled into a state of calm that did not exist before I saw you. I’m even working towards forgiveness…slowly, but still.

For one of my insecurities and trust issues, I know without fail that you care about me. You want me there. You are as invested in me beating those stupid minions as I am. I can feel it, clearly, in the way you look at me and speak to me.

Even during what felt like one of my worst periods of depression yet, you continued to be my ally in this endless war. You gave me what I needed to hear, encouraged me to come. You won’t entertain the idea that I’m anything less than the good you see in me.

Maybe you are this way with every client, I don’t know. I will never know. It doesn’t really matter either.

Safety. Your office is my safe space. In fact, it is the safest place I know. It provides a sense of comfort that lets all the other emotions float to the surface, because they know they can exist without judgement. It offers me a reprieve from the complicated task of living. It floods me with a sense of connection and support.

You give me that safety.You offer me this place of refuge, a place where whatever I have to say is heard, accepted, validated. At this point, I wonder if there isn’t anything about me that you don’t know. Somehow, all you have to do is look at me and the words come tumbling out. I know you’ll get it, or you’ll at least try. I trust no one the way I trust you.

I don’t know what I did to deserve you.

Two years. It’s almost been two years with you. Our relationship is the strongest it’s been. You’ve never given up on me. On nights like tonight, the safety of you and your office are the buoys that pull me out of the deep water.

I have so much to thank you for, and I do it repeatedly. Those words have lost their meaning at this point, but I haven’t found a better way to express it yet.

So until I do, thank you, J. Thank you for the gift of your kindness. Thank you for your safety.

Hello from Rock Bottom

There is really no point in reading this post. I only wrote it to try to get some of this out of my head.

I’m stuck. Paralyzed. I have spent the majority of the last two days in bed, playing games on my phone and watching Grey’s Anatomy. For as many times as I’ve felt my depression sink me to rock bottom like a weight, I can’t ever say that I’ve ever felt this unable to act or move or do just about anything.

Self-care has gone so far out the window I’d have to go miles to retrieve it. I am still tracking my moods and to a lesser extent, my diet, but I’ve been eating terrible. Other than that forget it. No mindfulness, no self-affirmations, no coping thoughts. I am not utilizing my self-care box. The most of my relaxation plan that I’ve managed is using my oil diffuser.

It’s bad. I feel really awful and low. I haven’t done a single productive thing in days. Every time I think about doing it I either feel tired or I think, what’s the point? 

I finally got out of bed this morning, but I’ve just moved over to my desk, where I can conveniently continue watching Netflix on my laptop.

After some reflection, I’ve decided that one of the biggest triggers of this awful depression is the holiday weekend. It’s Memorial Day Weekend in the US and I had a total of 0 plans. As I laid in bed feeling the hopelessness of inaction, I saw a whole slew of posts on Facebook and instagram of people who are off traveling in other countries or are attending cookouts with family.

Don’t go on social media and look at pictures, you say? Fine, I’ll give you that, but it doesn’t change the fact that I know people are out there having BBQ’s, going to the beach, and doing other fun activities. It doesn’t change the fact that they have friends and spouses and families who want to do those things with them and I don’t.

I have my parents, but it’s not like they had any plans. And honestly, I’m currently still dealing with a lot of pent of resentment towards them for not being the people I need them to be. Being around them makes me pretty angry sometimes. Even when they have good intentions and are trying to help, I find myself easily annoyed and looking for an escape because I’m so wrapped up in how their faults screwed me up. I can’t get over how different we are, how our values are so far apart

Which makes me feel like an ungrateful asshole. What kind of terrible daughter can’t spare any tolerance towards the people that gave her life? What kind of person can’t just accept and move on, instead blaming two people who did the best they can for her own failings? What kind of awful, unappreciative person times leaving her room so that she doesn’t have to run into them?

Let’s not even discuss the fact that I’m pretty much trapped in my room, because it’s my only personal and private space in this house. That’s it’s own trigger.

I don’t want to feel this emotions towards them, but I do. They are eating me alive, overwhelming me. I feel so much shame for all of that and the fact that I do a piss poor job of hiding it.

I’m not just angry at them. I’m angry at everyone who had plans. My therapist, who took days off to spend at the beach with her husband. My friend, who was just in Florida and is now at the beach with her other friends. The family I babysit, for being able to take three vacations in six months while I get to stay home and watch their dogs to barely make enough money to pay what would be one month’s rent.

It’s not anger, it’s jealously. I’m jealous of all the people who had things to look forward to while I spent my time alone in the same four walls where I always am. I’m jealous of all the people who have the means to live their lives. I’m jealous of the people they have to experience that fun with.

I’m awful.

I’ve made propositions to my group of friends from grad school to do fun things. We talked about going to Mexico after we graduated, but that never happened despite mentioning it multiple times. We’ve talked about Niagara Falls this summer over drinks, but that hasn’t transpired. They all go on vacations with their families or boyfriend or group of friends from high school or undergrad. This isn’t a priority to them and I don’t have my own group where it would be a priority.

I could push the issue a little more, yes, but then I’d worry relentlessly that they didn’t even want to go somewhere or do something fun. Unless they show any initiative, I can’t be sure that they even want to really be with me. It’s so defeating to ask about when we are booking a trip and get only a half-hearted response. I’ve given up.

Sometimes I think about trying to do these fun things on my own. Taking a day at the beach. Actually traveling somewhere. I wish being out in the world didn’t make me so anxious. I wish the thought of doing those things alone didn’t make me feel so pitifully empty.

I also think about going out and trying to make some new friends, people that I could do these things with. That seems like a possible solution, except I have absolutely no idea how to go out and acquire new friends at this point in my life. Even if I did, I have no confidence that I’m worth anyone’s time and I’d be too damn awkward about it.

I have a lot of shame for these feelings too. I feel like I should just suck it up and be grateful for what I have. Some people don’t get to do all the things that I want to do. Some people just get what they get, they work hard and live a simple life. Some people have it so much worse than me. What I have should be enough for me.

Are you catching on to all the reasons I’m not the good person everyone believes me to be?

My critic is in overdrive, as has been stated by some in the comments of my last post. Every time I look in the mirror, I’m put off by the dark circles under my eyes, red marks on my face, the size of my pores. Every time I look at my thighs, I’m put off by how fat they are.

And yet what have I been doing the past couple of days? Eating more than I should be, making unhealthy choices. That’s certainly not helping me be less of a fatass. I’m so impulsive when it comes to food. It’s always easy choice, the lazy choice.

Every choice I’m making is a lazy choice.

Possibly the worst part of all of this is, and maybe a secondary trigger, is that I bombed one of my interviews on Wednesday. I don’t know that for sure, but even being as tough on myself as I am, I just know that I didn’t put my best foot forward. I felt completely frazzled and just froze up when they asked me questions. Like an imposter masquerading around as someone who is actually deserving of a job.

It’s been so hard to go to interviews and not know whether I’m being perceived as competent or unfit. I feel like a little kid in adult shoes, and I don’t know how I’m ever supposed to function independently. As much as people say kind things about me and how I am “an asset” to the team, I feel like they just don’t get how much I struggle to make decisions when confronting teachers and administration.

I do not trust myself. I don’t believe in myself. Why should any of them believe in me?

I feel like I stand no chance of doing this job well: the one I like but also spend ample time questioning whether or not I’ll even be able to make a difference.

Ungrateful. Lazy. Loser. Selfish. All of this is running through my head 100% of the time. I feel helpless to it, and have kind of resigned myself to the fact that it’s true. I’m failing. I’m failing all across my life.

It’s my job to at least try to be better. Literally no one else out there can care or put in the effort that I can to be better. But what happens when even I don’t feel like there is a point?

I can learn skills, great. I can tell myself some nice things, sure. I can spend an hour a week paying for someone to be nice to me, awesome. I can keep pushing, keep surviving this.

But why? Why should I do that?

I feel like I’ve made all the wrong decisions, messed up all my chances to be happy and have the things I want. I can’t go back and fix any of that, I’m stuck with where I am and what I’ve got. Now, I feel like all that’s left is coming up short in life, not achieving what I want. I’ll go to work (maybe), come home, rinse, repeat. That sounds miserable.

Maybe I should hope for more, maybe I should fight for more, but from this dark place I have no fight in me. I just don’t care.

Since I don’t care and since there is no point, I’m really thinking about cancelling Thursday’s session, more than I ever have before. Plus, I feel like I’m more undeserving of J’s kindness than ever since I’ve only spent the weekend hurting myself and laying around. If I go to her and complain about all this again, it’ll just prove how attention-seeking I really am. This is my consequence. This is my punishment.

Of course, it’s not easy to cancel, but I feel like I should. J deserves the break from me anyway. The holiday weekend is over tomorrow, so I’m going to try to force myself to text her then.

A week ago I felt so hopeful and was seriously looking forward to graduation. Things have gotten so bad so quickly. You never know when it’s coming. But it always comes back.

J thinks good things about me. She thinks I’m a good person. She thinks I work hard. But she shouldn’t. She’s wrong. Maybe this feeling is temporary, but the truth about the flawed, shitty person I am is permanent.

 

From Up to Down

I don’t know where it came from, but depression is here tonight. It’s been here all day. With it came suicidal ideation. Lots of it.

I am so tired. My body hurts. I am also covered in bug bites and bruises from wiping out at the playground on Thursday when I was there with S. The only thing I’ve been marginally interested in is laying in my bed and playing games on my phone.

I am supposed to be reading from my DBT book and keeping track of my positive and negative judgements, so that I can discuss in therapy this week. I’ve noticed I have a lot of judgements, the same ones over and over. I am ugly. My thighs are fat. I am lazy and should be doing more. I am an ungrateful person. I am not smart enough or assertive enough to be successful at work. I am a loser. I am an idiot.

I have a distraction plan. A relaxation plan. Lists of things I am supposed to be doing instead of hurting myself. When I’m well, these all seem like feasible things to do. I’m motivated to try. Now? I’ve cut four times in the last two days, so it’s safe to say I suck.

J says I’m working hard, but this is the proof that I’m not. This is why I don’t deserve the support and kindness I receive in therapy.

I literally don’t want to do anything right now. I’ve guilted myself into writing this. The thought of waking up to a new day tomorrow hurts. The thought of continuing to do this back and forth, up and downs of my mood, is not appealing to me.

I hurt. Plain and simple, I’m in a dark place at the moment. That place of hopelessness and defeat. I’ve got so much anger and jealousy. I want J desperately and I hate myself for that, but I also know that talking to her would certainly be pointless because she can’t fix my flaws.

I think that I may be unfixable. A lost cause. These minions just keep coming back stronger each time. What am I even trying for?

Or is it just that the judgements in my head are true and I’m a lazy loser who isn’t working hard enough to be better?