Hi

I’m checking in for the first time in a while. I have been sliding down into a depressed state for many weeks now, and I am starting to use my coping tools to help me find a way back up. I have already begun this turn to some degree but coming back here and writing my thoughts out is a big part of how I process.

My depression is lubricated by the circumstance of K having cancer and engaging in a knock-down, drag-out brawl to liberate herself from it. It’s a very real possibility that she will not be here at the end of this struggle, and that chills me in a cold-knife-to-the-intestines kinda way. I do try to keep my optimism and attitude positive but I won’t hide that I’m scared. I gave her every part of myself that I had to give, and she could be gone. More than just that though, I feel detached from myself like I’m watching my reality through a screen and I have the joystick in my hands. I don’t feel like there is much I can do to influence anything… I feel ineffectual somehow. Irrelevant maybe is the better word. I have lost a sense of what I am good for, what I am doing and why I am doing it. Is anything I do making a real difference? Are people benefitting from the energy I give? Am I even giving enough in the first place? There is a voice of nagging negativity and dubiety plaguing me from afar. Work has felt like a black hole since we lost our office. I’ve had a very hard time establishing a routine since there is no physical location to drive to. I end up somewhere between serious and relaxed, composed and decomposing. I need to get out of this house and I have been contemplating ways I could have a remote location where I do work. I’m actively problem solving my circumstances. Lastly, I just feel that neurochemical imbalance… slow, sad, unexcited, bored, anxious. It’s an all the time stagnant haze which my flashlight only further illuminates rather than provides me with any clarity on the path forward.

Though these thoughts and feelings do haunt me, they are a small fraction of the pervading good that I feel in my life. Many positive things are happening in my world that are cause to be hopeful: I have a wonderful woman in my life who knows me and loves me for who I am; she is with me every day whether physically present or not. I have a loving family that is willing to work on improving their  communication skills. I just traded in my 15 year old Dodge for a new Nissan truck! I have a job where being mentally ill isn’t something I need to hide, it’s something that qualifies me to do the work that I do. We just bought a new house for my mom and dad and I, in a very beautiful area just up the freeway from Sacramento. Life has never been as good as it is about to be.

I have these dialectical thought processes: I take the good and the bad and respect both while not siding conclusively with either aspect. I often proceed with things having considered both the positive and negative aspects of said things (or, I try to). I can love/hate with the best of them. I think this keeps me from being too stubborn, or too closed minded. I like having things to add to either column, and since the balance favors the less objectionable option, I have the ability to be moved on issues where most would be unwilling to acquiesce. It also helps me not get too lost in my depression, because I can still see the good too. I know there is sadness, and sometimes it is the only thing I feel… but I also know that the sadness will pass on to something else if I help it do so. A distraction, or a game, a good conversation, a hug if you can get one for sure but we don’t always have someone to hug. There are things I can do for myself to help me get out of this place and that’s what I’m going to be pushing for in the days ahead.

I need to get this body moving again and continue my better eating habits. I have a plan of action to help restore my vital energy and eccentric spunk I’m so often known for. I am coming back, one doofy comment at a time.

Alabama

Your worry is a shroud of fog that hides a vast world underneath. A veiled reality that the future and events have not yet made clear. I wish I could help you see through to the truth of what can be.

You fret over me but I know this is out of a fear that love will fade as it has in the past; with other men. You are not wrong to fear. Trauma teaches us to be afraid of circumstances expecting an outcome. Those triggers will fire but not be ratified with harm. I am not like the others you have known.

What I don’t think you see is how much you are a part of me now. I know you understand I’m in love, but do you know I feel you in my blood; pumping through my heart? Do you know my every wish is to be together with you? I’d give anything to have that life with you, even amidst the ensnaring mess you find yourself entangled in. Even from this, there is escape. There is hope.

You are my person now, and I am doing everything I can to help you out of where you are. I wish to help launch you into a future you can thrive in. I see you: crinkled, I oppressed and downtrodden. Your life has you confined. Chained. I’m honest in my desire to rid you of those chains forever. One by one, they will be cast aside.

If only you’d believe me. If only I could convince you that it could be real. It’s not a fantasy if it is our reality. It’s only as far off as we allow it to be. I need you K.

I hope this message challenges your doubt for us. I hope it makes you question that fear you have that I may leave. You’ll see my devotion here, my desire for a healthy life. Not just mine either.

Find your rest and reconcile your anxiety. Tomorrow is a day where I take one more step closer to you, and us.

Going

I’m fewer than 55 hours from flying across the country to see my girlfriend for the first time. We started counting down 52 days ago, and here we are with fewer than 3 days left to go.

I can say I’m very excited. Scared a little too. I’m going far from my safety zone. However, I do know that I will be loved and appreciated where I am going. K and I have been speaking with the frequency of a married couple, and the passion of two halves separated and waiting to be rejoined. I feel a burning for her that, as I have stated, I have not felt in years. Since J.

 

Now that the certainty of our union is nigh, I feel a sense of satisfaction with my situation. Life is stable for the most part. My career is humming along nicely. My mental health is in fair standing (with the occasional blip).

I did hear Sting’s “Why Should I Cry For You” and it tore me a new/old wound. It’s amazing how much love I had for J that the echoes of my hurt still remain to this day. It scares me a little that I feel the same yearning for K. I don’t ever want to hurt like I did when J left me. K is a very different person though. We love, we perish in flames, we are reborn of the soot of our prior demise.

I will have 3 days of absolute bliss. I feel the push and pull of my dialectic, but now, the superior sensation is ecstasy. The only tingle that pervades is that of anticipation for that moment when her apartment door closes, and we are alone at last.

Blast From The Past?

I feel both remorse and jubilation given all the things I have been through. So many tries at love, and a litany of failures to look back at. I always believe the litter of past transgressions can be removed, leaving a pristine landscape once more, but it does require energy, time, patience to clean it away. I have endeavored to do my part but it was never a thing that could be done alone.

I get the distinct feeling J is still out there, lurking. She being liberated of he need to find a resolution or a process designed to heal, I am simply followed by a vague shadow of someone I once loved devotedly. I find this regrettable. My whole trajectory in the last 6 years has been geared towards helping build bridges and healing people… yet, I can’t heal her. I can’t even talk to her anymore without having my soul ripped in half.

I know her accusations are the only thing she has left to harm me with (and she has), as they are an instrument that can affect change. I regret who I was, and I would change any number of things that happened to produce better outcomes… but the sad fact remains that fretting about my past is not going to change it in any way, ever. The only thing I have left is to try and build a better future for myself.

I don’t know how to bridge the vast chasm that now exists. From my peer support perspective, all healing begins with  open, honest conversation. All steps forward that build us up do not also suppress the feelings/emotions/traumas of the past.

In my new life that I have made, I find myself feeling proud of my accomplishments and not ashamed of who I was in an active way. What good does shame do me? I can’t walk forward with it on my back. I can only hope to reconcile the a source for myself since I am unable to control anyone else’s perceptions. My door has always been open, and remains so to any relic of the past who desires to move beyond what was done, into what can be. Shame is not the answer, systemic change is the only remedy.

Maybe because I am feeling these same feelings I had for J that this is coming back. It seems to be a very odd coincidence… I’ll keep you posted if it turns out to be just a Hunter-Seeker.

 

 

 

Before The Group…

I’m sitting here getting ready for my support group. I will admit I’m having some symptoms: anxiety is spiking, depressed thoughts are chewing away at me, and a general sense of dread hangs overhead.

I long for that daily conversation I used to have with A. Now there is a silence that my wheels spin frantically in. I was engaged, and now, no one really cares what happens in my world.

I’ve started talking to other women. There are a few that have responded to my replies. I’m kinda rebounding hard, but this is what happened last time. I had a falling out only to be picked back up again almost immediately. I’m that circumstance back in June, I should have been more conservative. A and I were in bed together on our second date. I don’t want anything like that now. I’m still hurting.

I’d really enjoy talking to someone again. Having a chat buddy to catch up with on the day’s events. Someone who wants to see inside me. It’s so intoxicating to be cared about. I wish I could share my perspective with someone who admired me.

My group will go great tonight. I’ve got a lot I bring as facilitator and person living with mental illness. However, I just want tonight to be done. I’m feeling like I need to close my eyes and shut out the world for a while. I am alone here and feeling like I’m nailed to the shore as the tide comes in.

Hurt And Scraping

I guess my reconciliatory tone towards A is founded in the still-fresh ache of separation. I do still have feelings; I’m not a robot that can just shut them off.

I do think our break is for the best. You have to be in the right state of mind to be in a relationship. There were things she and I never really connected on. I had defects and so did she. The more distance I get from the break the more clearly I see things. Plus, I’m hurt by her sneaky actions activating her profile and looking for guys while we were still dating.

This probably means I’m going into silent running for the near future. I visited PS and responded to some messages, but once my premium status expires I’m not going back.

I just don’t think I’m going to find the right person on that or any dating site. I need to meet someone through one of my activities in the world. Whether at outreach or through some professional capacity, I’m hoping to align myself with like-minded individuals who share an interest in good mental health.

I had someone like that, but I scared her away and now C is long gone or entrenched in dislike. I wish it wasn’t so.

I’ll keep my doors open but I’m not seeking. I would like to make some close friends in my profession that become more. Hopefully, this process takes the time it needs to be a worthwhile investment.

Distance

Things I feel:

Hurt, alone, remorseful, unappreciated, unloved, lost, curious, frustrated and sad. 

Things I am resolved to feel:

Confident, stable, convicted, open-minded, reflective, attentive, perplexed, adaptive and proud.

Things I’d like to feel:

Trusted, loved, admired, respected, tolerated, engaged, humored, bantered-with and assured.

Real things that are also felt:

Abandoned, mismatched, unaligned, disconnected, regretful, passionate, unacknowledged, disregarded and done.