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fleaball

Fleaball: Under Construction

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18 minutes ago, fleaball said:

I meant physically!! Which is true! I probably should have clarified but I definitely meant that my body is fucked.

 

Hrrrrrrm. Okay. Stand down, morale commandos. False alarm.

 

t205376_cat-soldier.jpg

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3 minutes ago, Severine said:

 

Hrrrrrrm. Okay. Stand down, morale commandos. False alarm.

 

t205376_cat-soldier.jpg

lmao I totally appreciate you looking out for me though. 

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So I did not wind up making a road trip for my brother's medication last night. Who wants to guess why?

 

Yes! Because that pharmacy has the medication on backorder as well. The soonest they could've filled it would be tomorrow, and there are no guarantees, apparently, because they don't know how much they're getting? I'm not clear on that part but it's a moot point, really. He had one pill left for last night, which I guess he ultimately cut in half to take the other half this morning so there was at least something in his system? I get the logic behind it but I'm not sure it works that way. Anyway. It would be nice if CVS actually called to say "hey there's a problem with your medication." But they never ever do, whether it's an insurance issue or an out of stock thing. Rage. 

 

Back to the point. He called the doctor yesterday morning and left a message asking for a new Rx but the guy's voicemail said he's out of the office Mondays and Tuesdays. Waffled for a while before going to work on whether to use the emergency page option but ultimately decided I'd just get paid for going on an adventure if the doctor didn't come through. Comes home on his break, said when he renewed the prescription it said it'd be ready by 10pm last night. Around 9:30 he texts me "now it says it'll be ready Wednesday." Well, fuck. I tell him to do the emergency page thing ASAP, but he's at work til 10:15 so of course he's not going to take 30 seconds to do it while there's no one around. I also tell him that in the future he needs to be requesting his refills the first day they let him rather than when he's down to his last pill. (Duh?) I call the pharmacy in question just to double check that this is the same issue. It is. I call the 24-hour Walgreens 10 minutes away (where we went the first time this happened) and they're out too. 

 

He comes home around 10:30. We discuss more. He waffles "is this really an emergency though?" Yes, you've told me withdrawal from this drug can literally kill you. I'm pretty sure that's a valid fucking emergency. More waffling. Finally "I'll call him after I get changed and use the bathroom and make food." It's almost 11pm, fucking call him you moron. Eventually he comes back into my room and tells me he's pretty sure he woke the guy up, that he fucked up leaving the message (didn't say who he was or his phone number) but the guy called him back anyway and was pissed at having been woken up but he asked if he needed the new Rx right this minute (idiot said no) so the guy said he'd put it in first thing in the morning. Spend another 20 minutes hashing out possibilities ("What if our CVS is out again when they get the new prescription?" "I [Flea] have things to do tomorrow so you'd better set your alarm well before you usually get up so you can make sure he sent in the new one and so you can call other places to see if they have it because I won't be around." "uhhhhhh...") Turns out the guy sent in a prescription for a higher dose so my brother can just cut the pills in half. That works. Of course even though he was up early enough to text me that it was ready for pickup while I was on my way to the pool class, he didn't take that time to go get it. So I had to pick it up on my way back so he could take it before work. So much fun. 

 

I talked about this with my therapist last month - I hate that I'm also enabling him by putting up with his shit. But on the other hand, if I don't help him and he just flounders, the alternative is me having to drag his ass to the ER and deal with that clusterfuck instead. I'm a step ahead of my mother because I'm definitely forcing him to make his own damn phone calls and I was going to make him come with me to East Bumfuck last night, but I hate that this is still the best option. Rawr.

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Okay, so the Yoga teacher is a moron. I am sorry that went so badly nad that your ankle and knee decided to be dumb.
 

16 hours ago, fleaball said:

I talked about this with my therapist last month - I hate that I'm also enabling him by putting up with his shit. But on the other hand, if I don't help him and he just flounders, the alternative is me having to drag his ass to the ER and deal with that clusterfuck instead. I'm a step ahead of my mother because I'm definitely forcing him to make his own damn phone calls and I was going to make him come with me to East Bumfuck last night, but I hate that this is still the best option. Rawr. 

As for your brother. Yes he is a dolt. And while I agree it stinks you still have to enable him, you are at least forcing him to so something to help take care of this and just doing it all for him. As much as I hate to say this, I think he needs baby steps in how to be an adult too, and your forcing him to take some steps, even if hes not going to be an adult tomorrow.

 

Until then I suggest this for your brother.

giphy.gif

 

Or you can do as I do to my kids sometimes

 

tenor.gif

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On 7/18/2018 at 12:57 PM, Bean Sidhe said:

As for your brother. Yes he is a dolt. And while I agree it stinks you still have to enable him, you are at least forcing him to so something to help take care of this and just doing it all for him. As much as I hate to say this, I think he needs baby steps in how to be an adult too, and your forcing him to take some steps, even if hes not going to be an adult tomorrow.

I think he is slowly (very, very slowly) realizing that I'm not going to cave to him like my mother did. It sucks because there's only so much I can do - I can't force him to go get his license and a car so he can run his own errands - but I think my generally pissed off and "what the actual fuck, dude" reactions are telling him something. 

 

Those gifs are great, but this is much more what I'd like to do: 

giphy.gif

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I wish I could do therapy for more than 50 minutes once a week. There's just so much to get through. Unpacking and trying to relearn 30 years of my life is not a simple process. Also, advance warning that I'm not sure if a lot of this post is going to make sense as I'm basically thinking out loud. 

 

So in therapy yesterday we talked a little about how I realized my entire family operates around the convenience of things. (We didn't get to spend much time on it because I spent most of the appointment complaining about my brother and the yoga teacher.) I've been thinking about it more, and I think picking it apart could solve some problems. Like when my mother didn't want to make dinner, we'd just go out to eat. Not so much when I was younger, but super often in the last 7-10 years. I'd bet anything this is part of why I rely so much on takeout - I learned it was an acceptable alternative to cooking and eating at home. Sure, I still have the grocery shopping/meal prep issue, but I wonder if I'd've found ways to power through or something if "I don't want to cook so I'm not going to" hadn't been modeled for me. Actually, in a more general sense, "I don't want to so I'm not going to" sums up a lot about how my parents go about life. (Side note, it's weird trying to figure out whether I should use present tense or past when I'm talking about both of them. Apologies if I'm inconsistent about it.) Another inconvenient thing: traffic and/or long drive times. My father will not go anywhere if there's traffic. Which is great, because we live super close to Boston, super close to several exits for an interstate, and along several state highways. Morning traffic can last til 10 and afternoon traffic starts around 3 if not earlier. Beyond that, if something is too far away (totally arbitrary) it's "well I hate to make a trip for just that one thing so I'm just not going to go." Which correlates to why I feel like I need to batch all my errands together because going out to do just one thing is a waste of time, or if I'm going out to this one store then I may as well go to one or two others in the area instead of making multiple trips and spending all that time driving, etc. More convenience issues: if it breaks, don't bother fixing it and just buy a new one (and complain about the price); don't bother doing preventive maintenance on the house, just wait til something breaks (and even then, put it off as long as possible); don't do regular cleaning/laundry/etc, wait til there's company coming over to do a marathon cleaning session and wait til you're out of clean clothing because who wants to do laundry more often than that, amirite? 

 

I know that in general a lot of people do stuff like this and it's not unique to my family. But I do think it's a factor in a lot of my problems. I would say I have very little discipline and it's hard to force myself to do things that are inconvenient, whether the inconvenience is physical (cleaning, sitting in traffic) or just mental (applying for jobs and knowing I'm going to be judging myself, for example). And no one ever showed me "well Flea, sometimes you have to do things you don't want to do, but doing them now will make it better in the future so it's worth doing anyway." I mean for fuck's sake my mother didn't even open the damn mail when she didn't want to know what it said. (I will never get over the fact that copays for office visits have been sent to collections. For all 3 of them.) I know the problem is also compounded for me because doing things you don't want to do requires spoons and sometimes they're limited. Even if the thing increases spoons in the future (clean room = less stress = happy brain!), I can't use those future spoons now. I guess what I have to do is work on discipline? Oh. Hello. I just realized what I'm talking about it also instant gratification. So I need to be okay with delayed gratification. Also discipline. And now I'm laughing at myself because I was just thinking 'it's the marshmallow test! But I hate marshmallows, so fuck all of that." That doesn't even make sense, brain. Go away. 

 

But yes tl;dr I need to work on delayed gratification and developing self-discipline like an actual grownup. I just googled that very quickly and the results were basically "1- set goals. 2- do your goals." ...thanks? The whole convenience thing explains why I struggle with challenges here though. Workout goal? Well that means I have to get changed, and I'm going to get sweaty and gross, and then I have to shower after... not convenient. Writing in my journal? I might have to address thoughts and feelings that will make me feel bad. Pass. Changing my diet to include or exclude specific foods? That means I actually need to plan and be prepared so no thanks, I'd rather keep dicking around on the internet because being bored is better than leaving the house. It even ties into anxiety issues: I don't want to do the thing because it's going to make me anxious, and that makes me feel bad so I may as well not do it.

 

All of this leads to another problem I'm having: competing priorities. I've mentioned before that everything sucks because it's just a shitty merry-go-round. Most if not all of my health problems would get better if I could eat right and exercise and lose weight. My mental health would improve too. But it's super difficult to do any of those things precisely because my physical and mental health are bad right now. I'd be in a better place mentally if I moved out, but I need money for that, but applying for jobs is incredibly stressful and draining. And this challenge was supposed to be about picking small, easy things to create a baseline from which I could focus on bigger things. But I'm thinking I've wildly overestimated myself here. Two of my goals are relatively low effort, but exercising and eliminating dairy both involve a lot more than just doing those two things. And it sucks because beyond this baseline I'm trying to create, I really need to do those things. Exercise for my heart rate and to continue PT, at the very least, and dairy because it makes me feel fucking terrible when I eat it. So even though there's all kinds of shit I need to focus on and improve, I wonder if I wouldn't be better off focusing on just one area. And even if I try that there's no guarantee I wouldn't drop it all in two days because I decided a different area would be better. 

 

The competing priorities thing also happens on a smaller scale. I won't do X before I do Y, because I told myself Y has to get done today. Doing X won't prevent me from doing Y, but because Y is the thing that I really need to do I interpret that as I must do it before I do anything. (I do sometimes get around this, convincing myself to do a few smaller things to work up momentum, but it's highly dependent on what the other things are. If Y is something I need to leave the house for I'll focus all my energy on that, although it's not guaranteed I get it done anyway.) Or I'll seriously trip myself up between priorities and what I "should" be doing, since we all know that's a thing even though I don't even have any idea what it means. But it's like this: I need to stop getting take out because it's unhealthy and I need to save money. The cheapest/healthiest thing to make at home would be rice and beans, which I could buy dry in huge bags. But I can't make those because they require time in the kitchen. Buying canned beans and microwave rice cups is expensive and silly because the dry ones are cheaper even though I can't make them. So I may was well just give up and keep getting takeout because I'm wasting money no matter what. Same concept: Bird's Eye makes a bunch of frozen veggie and grain mixes that are tasty and relatively healthy... but they're $3.50 each. Which isn't bad! But my stupid brain cannot accept the fact that $3.50 for one meal is perfectly fine, especially when you consider that I'm spending at least $20 every time I order food. I could buy 5 bags of veggies and a few cans of beans or tuna and I've got a week's worth of dinners for the price of one. But no, that doesn't work. My stupid fucking brain has decided that the only acceptable option for saving money and eating healthy is the absolute bare minimum, and since it's all or nothing, if I can't reach that minimum then I may as well not try at all. Which is so fucking dumb. And frustrating. Because coming from where I am right now, eating healthy and saving money shouldn't be competing priorities. Buying expensive unhealthy takeout sets the bar super low for improvement there.

 

This post is getting away from me and I'm not even sure it makes sense. But at least I figured out the convenience and discipline things? Now I need to figure out a routine and stick to it. I've never had to do that before and I think I'd benefit from having some structure in day to day life. The downfall being that it'd be up to me to enforce said routine and structure. 

 

It's so frustrating to think about all this stuff and wonder who I'd be right now if my parents had actually attempted parenting.

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This was interesting to read and I think it shows a lot of high-level self awareness and self analysis that you should give yourself credit for. Tank is right - you didn't used to write like this and it's progress. I think you might be going through something I went through with therapy: when you're working on stuff and unpacking and analyzing, you get to a stage where you understand your maladaptive patterns better, notice them happening, understand where their roots are....but still can't stop doing them. Which, at least for me, was terrible - it was in some ways WORSE than before because I was doing the same stuff but I was so much more aware of it and thus frustrated with myself. That's the "it has to get worse before it gets better" thing. I know it feels like nothing is going to change. But I swear, there will come a time when you feel more able, bit by bit, to start changing stuff. All this time where it feels like you're not making progress? You are. Your increased awareness, your improved self-observation, your greater self-compassion, etc. are all laying the groundwork for the next stage where your own patterns start to change in concrete ways.

 

One thought: all the things you describe as being issues of convenience and discipline? To me those are actually descriptions of avoidant coping mechanisms. I think your parents and brother are classic avoidant copers (is coper a word? whatever, you know what I mean) and that you've picked up some of those same mechanisms but you're also aware/different enough that you aren't totally committed to avoidance the way they were/are, so for you it's more frustrating (in them, and in yourself) and something you're constantly trying to fight to change.

 

Like, how many of these things sound familiar? https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/in-practice/201305/avoidance-coping

 

I think framing these things as discipline/laziness/convenience issues makes it about blame and character strength, which I think is untrue, unhelpful, and misses the point. Avoidance is a coping mechanism that's learned and reinforced by upbringing and experiences, and it can be unlearned and modified into other coping mechanisms in a constructive way, as opposed to the idea of discipline where you're just supposed to like...force yourself...somehow. I think it makes a lot more sense to look at why your family (and to a lesser extent you) respond to obstacles this way, because understanding why it's happening and using existing therapeutic techniques to undo avoidant coping tendencies is a lot more likely to work than just telling yourself you need to be more disciplined. Discipline isn't the issue. You've been working on self-improvement for as long as I've known you (and before that, too) so you're not lazy and you're not unmotivated. The question is why, despite really wanting it and caring and trying, it's not working as well as you want. And I think the answer is that you need to unlearn the approach you were taught for how to handle problems, and learn new coping skills.

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5 hours ago, Severine said:

This was interesting to read and I think it shows a lot of high-level self awareness and self analysis that you should give yourself credit for. Tank is right - you didn't used to write like this and it's progress. I think you might be going through something I went through with therapy: when you're working on stuff and unpacking and analyzing, you get to a stage where you understand your maladaptive patterns better, notice them happening, understand where their roots are....but still can't stop doing them. Which, at least for me, was terrible - it was in some ways WORSE than before because I was doing the same stuff but I was so much more aware of it and thus frustrated with myself. That's the "it has to get worse before it gets better" thing. I know it feels like nothing is going to change. But I swear, there will come a time when you feel more able, bit by bit, to start changing stuff. All this time where it feels like you're not making progress? You are. Your increased awareness, your improved self-observation, your greater self-compassion, etc. are all laying the groundwork for the next stage where your own patterns start to change in concrete ways.

Okay so this part is taking me the longest to reply to because people saying positive things about me is my kryptonite. 

 

You nailed it though. Like it was one thing when in the past I've been like "ugh why can't I do the thing?" Now it's like "okay I know why I have trouble doing the thing so why can't I just counteract that and do the thing anyway?!" I just want to light everything on fire and start fresh. Delete everything in my brain and relearn how to human properly instead of being stuck in this limbo. 

 

5 hours ago, Severine said:

One thought: all the things you describe as being issues of convenience and discipline? To me those are actually descriptions of avoidant coping mechanisms. I think your parents and brother are classic avoidant copers (is coper a word? whatever, you know what I mean) and that you've picked up some of those same mechanisms but you're also aware/different enough that you aren't totally committed to avoidance the way they were/are, so for you it's more frustrating (in them, and in yourself) and something you're constantly trying to fight to change.

 

Like, how many of these things sound familiar? https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/in-practice/201305/avoidance-coping

So hey #9 on that list is a huge part of why I have trouble applying for jobs despite all the research saying you're expected to apply even if you don't meet all the requirements. 

 

This is all pretty accurate though. A bunch of those are things I do and whatever I can't check off myself, someone in my family definitely can. 

 

5 hours ago, Severine said:

I think framing these things as discipline/laziness/convenience issues makes it about blame and character strength, which I think is untrue, unhelpful, and misses the point. Avoidance is a coping mechanism that's learned and reinforced by upbringing and experiences, and it can be unlearned and modified into other coping mechanisms in a constructive way, as opposed to the idea of discipline where you're just supposed to like...force yourself...somehow. I think it makes a lot more sense to look at why your family (and to a lesser extent you) respond to obstacles this way, because understanding why it's happening and using existing therapeutic techniques to undo avoidant coping tendencies is a lot more likely to work than just telling yourself you need to be more disciplined. Discipline isn't the issue. You've been working on self-improvement for as long as I've known you (and before that, too) so you're not lazy and you're not unmotivated. The question is why, despite really wanting it and caring and trying, it's not working as well as you want. And I think the answer is that you need to unlearn the approach you were taught for how to handle problems, and learn new coping skills.

So you're not wrong here and I'm sure given time I will absolutely turn it into a personal failing because that's what I do. (Not even judging myself here, just saying this is a familiar pattern of behavior.) But it's interesting because when I was writing that last night and thinking that I needed to develop discipline and whatnot, I was looking at it as a skill I'd never learned or was forced to learn. So to an extent maybe it is a new coping skill I have to learn? "No, Flea, 'I don't wanna!' isn't an acceptable reason not to do something." Or maybe there's a bit of a disconnect here between how I'm thinking of discipline vs how you're thinking of it. 

 

This is the part where I wish I knew more about my parents' childhoods, I guess. I only know the bare minimum. They were both shitty experiences, I know that, and I wouldn't be surprised if my father had CPTSD as well and therefore developed shitty coping mechanisms. Not so sure about my mother. And who the fuck knows with my brother. Obviously we had similarish experiences, in that the same things were modeled for us. But he also maintains that my mother directly gave him depression by punishing him when he didn't do his chores as a kid? So... yeah. 

 

Huh. All of this has me wondering what it is about me that's different from my family. Like there has to be some kind of inherent... something... going on. I regularly say I hope I was adopted, and I think you and @Sylvaa and other people(?) have said things like it's a wonder I turned out mostly functional despite my parents failing at everything. But it's kinda true? Even if we consider that my brother was the golden child and has more severe mental health issues than I do, how the fuck did I turn out the way I did? Why did an 18-year-old with underdeveloped social skills and relatively few life skills as a result of overbearing/codependent/enmeshed mothering and more or less absent fathering go to college 600 miles away and do reasonably well for herself there? Why did I go to 3 different countries, 2 of which I didn't speak the local language when I got there, and not blink? I knew my mother would be pissed I was applying for scholarships to the Middle East but I did it anyway and told her after the fact with an attitude of "haha you can't do anything about it" and in the back of my head was almost hoping she'd kick me out so I could cut ties forever. I started working out/eating better/losing weight despite getting shit from my family. I've always had better financial sense than either of my parents and I swear I had more money in my checking account than they did at one point. But I have no idea where all of this came from. I was never taught nor had models for being responsible or going after the things I wanted. I can't even say I learned it from friends because I didn't really have a lot of those. I wish I could figure out the source of all of this and tap into it more. Even if it's just a defiant streak where I wanted to piss off my parents, that would be something to harness for the short term and use to overcome some of the anxiety, I think. Have to dig at this more, I guess.

 

I always seem to have these new thoughts/ start these new conversations here the day after I've seen my therapist. Just once I wish it could happen the day before, so I wouldn't have to sit on things for a week before addressing them. D: But this is good and thanks for pointing out what you did! I feel like now I actually have something semi-concrete to work on? Like I might still be limited in how much I can address it given my living environment, much like the cooking thing, but for once I have something to bring to her that we can actually do. "How to I replace these coping mechanisms?" is a real thing. Also wow I'm suddenly terrified by the thought of becoming a functional human. It just occurred to me that maybe there's hope for that happening, but that would require leaving behind a lot of what makes me who I am right now. Even though I hate all those things, they're still familiar, and the new things are scary. 

 

Yup. On top of everything else I'm afraid of success. Which I may have said before but it's still a weird thing to say. Despite being crazy uncomfortable in my life right now at least I know what to expect from (perceived) mediocrity. But being someone who actually does stuff? Terrifying. 

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I hope it goes without saying, but my <3 is support, not "like." Other than liking your resilience in the face of extreme adversity, there is nothing to "like" about the crappy reality you've described. Hang in there.

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Just now, Mahalak said:

I hope it goes without saying, but my <3 is support, not "like." Other than liking your resilience in the face of extreme adversity, there is nothing to "like" about the crappy reality you've described. Hang in there.

Oh absolutely. And I appreciate it! 

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59 minutes ago, fleaball said:

You nailed it though. Like it was one thing when in the past I've been like "ugh why can't I do the thing?" Now it's like "okay I know why I have trouble doing the thing so why can't I just counteract that and do the thing anyway?!" I just want to light everything on fire and start fresh. Delete everything in my brain and relearn how to human properly instead of being stuck in this limbo.  

 

Can I just say, before you do this to yourself, share the process with a couple of us. This would make so many things so much easier. because I offer to be guinea pig for trials in this. You are not alone here Flea.

 

 

59 minutes ago, fleaball said:

Huh. All of this has me wondering what it is about me that's different from my family. Like there has to be some kind of inherent... something... going on. I regularly say I hope I was adopted, and I think you and @Sylvaa and other people(?) have said things like it's a wonder I turned out mostly functional despite my parents failing at everything. But it's kinda true? Even if we consider that my brother was the golden child and has more severe mental health issues than I do, how the fuck did I turn out the way I did? Why did an 18-year-old with underdeveloped social skills and relatively few life skills as a result of overbearing/codependent/enmeshed mothering and more or less absent fathering go to college 600 miles away and do reasonably well for herself there? Why did I go to 3 different countries, 2 of which I didn't speak the local language when I got there, and not blink? I knew my mother would be pissed I was applying for scholarships to the Middle East but I did it anyway and told her after the fact with an attitude of "haha you can't do anything about it" and in the back of my head was almost hoping she'd kick me out so I could cut ties forever. I started working out/eating better/losing weight despite getting shit from my family. I've always had better financial sense than either of my parents and I swear I had more money in my checking account than they did at one point. But I have no idea where all of this came from. I was never taught nor had models for being responsible or going after the things I wanted. I can't even say I learned it from friends because I didn't really have a lot of those. I wish I could figure out the source of all of this and tap into it more. Even if it's just a defiant streak where I wanted to piss off my parents, that would be something to harness for the short term and use to overcome some of the anxiety, I think. Have to dig at this more, I guess.

 

I will say I have seen this last (bolded) sentence work for people before. Sometimes the "I am going to do it just to prove you wrong." Can work and maybe that is what you were doing because you could just say it was your "rebellious teen years" but with everything that has happened, you are now looking back and you don't have your mom to basically prove wrong. I dunno. I may be getting into the "hey armchair doc, stop it" area. But maybe doing the "I am going to do X just to prove to them I can because they don't think I can." And maybe the fact that your dad and brother are relying on you so heavily makes it harder to prove against since they both already know you are more of an adult then they are. (Right, out of my armchair now).

 

 

59 minutes ago, fleaball said:

Yup. On top of everything else I'm afraid of success. Which I may have said before but it's still a weird thing to say. Despite being crazy uncomfortable in my life right now at least I know what to expect from (perceived) mediocrity. But being someone who actually does stuff? Terrifying. 

 

Can I tell you a secret? I am TERRIFIED that I will finish college and have to get a grown up job. And what will I do, where will I go? I mean I limited to what town I can work in, so that is a thing, and what if I can't find a job? Let alone, then I will have to meet new people, and hope I don't come off as a crazy person. Fear of success is a real thing and the idea, especially when dealing with anxiety and other things of moving to something new, is scary. The probably not so great coping mechanism I am using currently is that "if I don't think that far in advance , it can't scare me. I just need to deal with the next problem in front of me. " May not help, but if it gets you through one small problem, it may be worth it.

 

May I just say, before NF, I ignored most of my mental issues. After seeing you and a few others be honest about things, I am learning to deal with mine, in a very slow, not really focus, just a "hey, thats better" way. So thank you to you and everyone else who has been so honest up to this point about things.

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Yup. On top of everything else I'm afraid of success. Which I may have said before but it's still a weird thing to say. Despite being crazy uncomfortable in my life right now at least I know what to expect from (perceived) mediocrity. But being someone who actually does stuff? Terrifying. 


So very short reply because I hate typing long things on my phone but this reminds me of once when my ED specialist and I were talking about fear of change/recovery and she said, "yeah, what would happen if you started doing better and then the bar got raised?" and I swear just the question gave me heart palpitations.

Fear of success is very real (especially given the variety of messed up ways your parents treated your achievements) but still it's just another thing you can overcome, given time.

Sent from my Pixel 2 using Tapatalk

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3 hours ago, Bean Sidhe said:

Can I just say, before you do this to yourself, share the process with a couple of us. This would make so many things so much easier. because I offer to be guinea pig for trials in this. You are not alone here Flea.

Absolutely! If I figure it out I'm monetizing the shit out of it, but y'all get the family and friends freebie. 

 

3 hours ago, Bean Sidhe said:

I will say I have seen this last (bolded) sentence work for people before. Sometimes the "I am going to do it just to prove you wrong." Can work and maybe that is what you were doing because you could just say it was your "rebellious teen years" but with everything that has happened, you are now looking back and you don't have your mom to basically prove wrong. I dunno. I may be getting into the "hey armchair doc, stop it" area. But maybe doing the "I am going to do X just to prove to them I can because they don't think I can." And maybe the fact that your dad and brother are relying on you so heavily makes it harder to prove against since they both already know you are more of an adult then they are. (Right, out of my armchair now).

You're always welcome to armchair doctor me! Because even if you're (or anyone is) off base, I'll think about it and sometimes even if you're wrong it'll take me in the right direction. So I'm open to any and all ideas. :) I think you're right about my father and my brother though. Plus even though I know they have shitty opinions about me I don't care enough about them to prove them wrong. My mother was definitely vocal with her opinions of what I could and couldn't do, so it was easier to push back on her. I know when I changed my major and applied to go abroad and stuff, I wasn't actively thinking about spiting her, I just wanted to do it for me. (And didn't tell her til after I'd done it because I didn't want to fight about it, since I was doing it no matter what she thought.) It's definitely something I'll have to dig deep for and see if I can figure out a way to use it. Because I can definitely do things out of spite when I want to. I guess I just have to figure out who to spite? Everyone here is too nice and supportive, I give zero fucks about what my brother has to say, and my father doesn't really tell me if he doubts I can do something, just says "okay do what you want to do" (which is also what he says when he doesn't doubt me so that's not rage fuel). Doing stuff out of spite probably isn't the healthiest option, but if it gets me out of my rut then why not. 

 

I wonder if I can work up the energy to do things to spite my mother even though she's dead. Could work for a few things, but also probably isn't great because there's no active push back. Whether I do things or not she's not around to see or make shitty comments. 

 

3 hours ago, Bean Sidhe said:

Can I tell you a secret? I am TERRIFIED that I will finish college and have to get a grown up job. And what will I do, where will I go? I mean I limited to what town I can work in, so that is a thing, and what if I can't find a job? Let alone, then I will have to meet new people, and hope I don't come off as a crazy person. Fear of success is a real thing and the idea, especially when dealing with anxiety and other things of moving to something new, is scary. The probably not so great coping mechanism I am using currently is that "if I don't think that far in advance , it can't scare me. I just need to deal with the next problem in front of me. " May not help, but if it gets you through one small problem, it may be worth it.

For what it's worth, I believe in you. You've proven that you can figure shit out and make it work, so when you get to that point I know you'll find some kind of solution. I might have to steal your coping mechanism though. I'm always trying to solve a dozen problems at once and thinking too far into the future to do it, so working on the next thing in front of me is something I need to try.

 

3 hours ago, Bean Sidhe said:

May I just say, before NF, I ignored most of my mental issues. After seeing you and a few others be honest about things, I am learning to deal with mine, in a very slow, not really focus, just a "hey, thats better" way. So thank you to you and everyone else who has been so honest up to this point about things.

Thank you for saying this! It's super weird to me that my complaining and essentially thinking out loud (as I see it) is helpful to people, but I'm glad it is! I always try to be open about mental health issues (where appropriate) because it's not something that's talked about enough and there's so much bullshit stigma around it and I hope that if I'm talking about it, if even one person sees it and learns from it, that's a fucking win. So hey, I'm sorry you're in the super shitty club of people (awesome people, shitty club) dealing with all of this, but I'm glad you're seeing progress in yourself! 

 

3 hours ago, Severine said:

So very short reply because I hate typing long things on my phone but this reminds me of once when my ED specialist and I were talking about fear of change/recovery and she said, "yeah, what would happen if you started doing better and then the bar got raised?" and I swear just the question gave me heart palpitations.

Fear of success is very real (especially given the variety of messed up ways your parents treated your achievements) but still it's just another thing you can overcome, given time.

Sent from my Pixel 2 using Tapatalk

 

I remember DC therapist saying something similar and I kinda just froze. Like I can't even imagine what that would look like. I'm sure I'll get there eventually, but it's a good thing I'll be in therapy when it happens. Probably cry to you guys here too. 

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I was doing well on what was my second dairy-free day in a row, but then shit happened and I needed the comfort of ice cream. >> I will acknowledge that it was not the best option available to me, but I will not berate myself for it because I recognized that I was feeling anxious and gave myself a distraction. #babysteps

 

I went to Aldi earlier after spending several hours convincing myself that I really, really fucking needed to go get food. They didn't have half of what I wanted so even though I went and I got some stuff (snacks, protein bars, some frozen veggies), I left feeling defeated and more anxious than when I went in, because I dragged myself there and it was kind of a wasted trip. Which was not my fault and I didn't treat it as such, but it sort of piled on the anxiety because like "okay I'm here, I did it, but even though I'm here I still have to go somewhere else anyway because I can't even make a meal from what I got here." It was about 8ish when I got to the store, 8:30 when I left, and I spent a few minutes sitting in the car trying not to cry. I was that stressed about it. Called my father and asked if he wanted to get ice cream. Didn't tell him why, but I was craving some kind of dairy (is craving fat a thing? because even if I've not cut out dairy completely I have significantly cut down what I was eating and I don't currently eat much fat otherwise) and I really needed both a distraction in general and also just to avoid sitting in my room ruminating on my failure of a grocery run. 

 

So I've come to the conclusion that even though my brain is trying to convince me that I should shop at Aldi because it's cheaper than anywhere else, I really need to just go somewhere else for now. The Aldi in DC was bigger and had a lot more of what I wanted so I could shop there more consistently. This one's tiny and never seems to have what I'm looking for. I've also realized that if I run to the store I used to work at after like 10pm (it's open til midnight), there's no one there who knows me or my mother. (Well there's one woman that I absolutely loathe but the feeling is mutual and she never liked my mother either. So even though just seeing her pisses me off that's been a longstanding thing since before I quit in 2013 so I'm rather used to that by now. I just make a disgusted face when I realize she's there and do my best to avoid her.) So far I'm sort of tricking myself into going by saying I'll pick up my brother and just grab a few things while I'm there. And to be clear: he's not asking for the rides, and if I ask if he wants me to pick him up he says no except once in a blue moon when he'll take advantage to get a bunch of heavy stuff. But if I phrase it as "I'm coming to buy stuff and I'll wait for you" or something, he doesn't argue. So I'm totally using him in this situation and I don't feel bad. The other solution is just to go to a different location of the same chain. There's one less than 10 minutes away in 2 different directions, one of which is two minutes from my therapist's office. So really what I need to do is just come up with some kind of schedule for when I'm going, because the routine of it will probably help more than "fuuuuuck I'm out of groceries 

 

I'm still reminding myself that it's okay to spend money on groceries. I think part of the problem too is that I've seen articles or reddit posts or what have you where people are like "I'm single and my grocery budget is $3 for the entire month!" So I've gotten it in my head that I can't/shouldn't/don't need to spend more than that for myself. I'm exaggerating, obviously, but the problem is I see things like that and assume I should be doing what they're doing. Never mind that these are people in their own apartments, who've already stocked their kitchens and pantries, and who don't have actual fucking PTSD preventing them from doing these things. Sure, one day I can be healthy and happy and go fully vegan and live on $50 a month shopping at bulk stores and ethnic groceries and all that. But right now I can't be that person. I can't. So I'm giving myself permission to buy the stupid $3.50 bag of vegetables and not feel bad about it. I got at least a week's worth of meals and snacks for what I could spend on delivery in a day or two. There's nothing wrong with that. It's okay, and it's even better for me. And I'm repeating this a lot because I'm still trying to convince myself of it. 

 

And since we're talking about food - I'm updating my goals. Exercise goal is scrapped because it's too much right now and also I'm more limited than I thought. Unofficially I'll be working on PT, and if I get to the gym or pool then great. But it's not a focus. Also scrapping the dairy goal. Will continue to try to avoid it anyway because I recognize that it makes me feel like crap, but I'm not sure "make sure there are alternatives!" jives with "make food-eating a minimally stressful experience." I'm keeping meditation and journaling and will for realz focus on them from now on. I'm replacing the other two goals with more food-related ones, ironically. 

 

1 - Eat some kind of food within 30 minutes of waking up. Oatmeal, bagel, clif bar, fruit, a fucking cookie, it doesn't matter. Just food.

2 - Track at least 75% of what I eat. 

 

Why am I doing this to myself after my novella about my food issues and why I shouldn't track my food? Because I'm sincerely fucking myself over and need to get back on track. I've fallen into a trap where I sleep way too late, and then don't bother eating after I get up until I've showered, dressed, gone out wherever I'm going and can grab Dunkins on the way, or if I'm not leaving the house then I just get up and go back to lying in bed dicking around on my phone and suddenly it's hours later before it occurs to me to eat. All in all I'm regularly going at least 12 hours without eating. Sometimes closer to 14. And I'm not trying to do IF, I'm just dumb making bad decisions. And I do wake up hungry, and I don't think my body appreciates being made to wait for no valid reason. It's not even some kind of punishment or anything. I don't intentionally deprive myself of food. It just takes a backseat to whatever else I'm doing. So I need to get in the habit of shoving something in my mouth when I wake up.

 

The tracking thing is going to suck, but as much as it might be a bad idea for all the reasons I outlined when I decided not to do it originally, I need it. I know it's hard to be protein deficient for real, but I'm actually worried about not getting a reasonable amount of protein. I'm getting very little fiber. I can go days without eating a fruit or vegetable if I'm ordering takeout. I really genuinely need to know what my eating is like right now. And I'll put it on MyFitnessPal. I just went back and made my shit friends only. (Link in my signature if anyone wants to add me. Feel free.) It gave me a goal of 2110 calories per day and I'm not really going to pay attention to that part, or really to the goals it set for my macros. I just want to know what the numbers are for now. Although ideally if I stop getting takeout and start eating things with identifiable ingredients it should work out in my favor anyway. But I'm saying I'll only track 75% of my food because even though it won't give me a clear picture, I don't want to pressure myself to the point that I freak out about it. Or you know, if I miss something I don't want to use that as an excuse to throw the whole day out the window.

 

I'm hoping that tracking combined with making myself eat breakfast will help me get back to a normal person eating schedule. I've been off course for a long time. When I was in school I did a reasonable job of eating several meals and snacks at least during the week, when I had to work and go to class. I wasn't great about eating regularly at home in DC, but it was better than I've done here. Since I moved back last year it's just been a disaster. For the first 6 weeks, when my mother was not at home, I'd get up at the last possible minute, shower, and then grab Dunkins on the way, usually shoving two donuts in my mouth while chugging my coffee on the highway around 10:30am. I'd be with her for like 4-5 hours and just not eat. Then I'd come home and something would distract me and I'd have dinner like two hours after that. I lost a decent amount of weight by virtue of just not eating, really. And since that shitshow ending, I've not had a schedule of any kind to remind me to eat, plus the whole "omg food is scary" thing. So I've survived on random snacking and lots of light (not filling!), easy-and-fast stuff, sometimes (if I get takeout or my father wants to go out to dinner) with one big, terrible-for-me meal that winds up being too much food but I eat it all anyway because I was starving. Nutritional content of the food aside, this is not a good way to be approaching food. Meal times and amounts of food are super inconsistent. I don't think it's a stretch to assume I might feel better if I were to eat more regularly. There's so much room for improvement that even little things have to have an impact at this point. 

 

I think I got rambly at the end and didn't properly finish off my thoughts because it's now 2:48 am, but it's well past bedtime and I think I said most of what I wanted to say?

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19 hours ago, fleaball said:

For what it's worth, I believe in you. You've proven that you can figure shit out and make it work, so when you get to that point I know you'll find some kind of solution. I might have to steal your coping mechanism though. I'm always trying to solve a dozen problems at once and thinking too far into the future to do it, so working on the next thing in front of me is something I need to try. 

 

I have more to say, but feel free to steal this. I kinda stole it from the Martian. But there are days it is very true.

8k0jFTx.jpg?fb&key=522baf40bd3911e08d854

 

And at least to me, getting to go home (even if I am not trying to survive Mars) is the whole goal. Go home and go back to bed.

The other one Hubby likes to remind me of is that during Apollo 11, the  guy in charge at Houston says

139cc715c84ee308bc7edc1d42d3f0b2.jpg

 

You can't fix it all at once. One thing at a time, and just do it. Sometimes when my brain is spinning faster than I can handle, Hubby will remind me of this and say "Work the problem. Whats Problem A?" And then reminder me, if we work enough problems we can go home.

Okay, longer post then it started out as.

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Flea, I've been off the boards for a couple of days and just got caught up. Instead of quoting particular passages of what you wrote I'm just going to summarize some thoughts I had.

 

You growing up the way you did was bad. You healing from that past now is hard. Once you've done most of that healing work and are out on your own, doing the things you wish you could be doing now, you are going to be so much stronger than people who had it easy that it's going to scare you. You're just stuck in the crappy part of that process; you've healed enough to see there is a better way to live, and still have a lot of healing to do before you start living that way.

 

That leads me into my other thought. You are wondering what makes you different from your family. The simple answer is you make you different from your family. You have seen their ways and rejected them. You're still learning how to live differently from them, but the most important part, the choice to be something different, is done. 

The one thing that makes you different from them is that you have chosen to be different.

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On 7/19/2018 at 8:54 PM, fleaball said:

I think he is slowly (very, very slowly) realizing that I'm not going to cave to him like my mother did. It sucks because there's only so much I can do - I can't force him to go get his license and a car so he can run his own errands - but I think my generally pissed off and "what the actual fuck, dude" reactions are telling him something. 

 

Those gifs are great, but this is much more what I'd like to do: 

giphy.gif

 

You could always try this method:

 

tumblr_nbfzo8jrSu1tkflzao1_500.gif

 

MZeg.gif

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This is your Monday reminder that I hate everything in existence. 

 

Replies to people eventually. Currently in that phase where I want to avoid everyone and everything. 

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Ahhhhh killl meeeee. I’m trying to get the inspection sticker for my stupid Lyft car and they require you go to a specific place and I wound up asking some random dude a bunch of questions. He was standing around looking like he worked here aaaaand he did not. Fuck Mondays. 

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Okay so Monday sort of redeemed itself. When my alarm went off this morning I set it for another hour and then said fuck it, I'm getting up anyway. Chugged water but the vampire nurse lady couldn't get a decent vein in my arm. She tried one and it didn't even bleed after wiggling it around. D: So then she went through my opposite hand. Hurt like a motherfucker. Anyway, went to Starbucks and the skies opened up and also declared their hatred of Mondays, so I made that post from the safety of my car before it cleared up enough to run for coffee. Ate food, had coffee, went to get the inspection sticker on my Lyft car, which they paid for but I don't understand why they make us responsible for getting done. I was half hoping they'd make me swap the car for another one, but alas. Anyway. Aside from my awkward encounter with the guy who turned out not to work there at all, it wasn't terrible? But I was there for 3.5 hours, melting the entire time. Pretty sure my car had been done for a while before they gave it back to me, like a long while, but they were so busy no one gave me back the keys. Oh well. 

 

I'm mad. I had plans for today, yo. Like a bunch of other errands I was 100% going to run. But I got my car back in the middle of rush hour and was super gross and also hungry, so I just gave up. Came back to eat food, asked my father to return a massively overdue library book for me since he goes to the library a million times a week, drank a ton of water because I was dying. Not terrible. Plus there's always the good news of "your car passed inspection and you don't have to jump through any hoops getting things fixed!" 

 

And then after refreshing the app every 5 minutes forever, I get my cholesterol results. And... what? I was hoping I'd be close to last year at best. Mostly just praying it wouldn't be astronomically high. And I honestly don't get why it isn't. I won't complain, I'm just extremely confused. To the point that I asked @Severine how I find out whose sample they switched mine with. But after talking with her I'm going with "this is my body encouraging me to keep doing what I'm doing." Now to work on the triglycerides. 

 

fun fact: I googled acceptable cholesterol levels because I thought I read somewhere in the last year or so that they were lowering it from 200 to something else, and I wound up on the American Heart Association's website and found this: "Treatments for sinus tachycardia - Your doctor should consider and treat the cause of sinus tachycardia rather than the condition itself. If your rapid heartbeat is a symptom of a more serious or longer term problem, simply slowing the heart rate could cause more harm and leave the underlying condition untreated." So that sounds like it's in my favor. They listed anxiety and severe emotional distress as possible reasons for it. Which we knew, but I like seeing it in multiple places. Cardiologist appointment is 8/8 so we'll see what happens. Now if I could just stop thinking any and all pain on my left side is a heart attack. :rolleyes: I check my pulse, it's always fine. But since every movie and tv show ever depicts people clutching at their left arm/shoulder/chest that's my immediate worry. But hey, at least I can stop worrying about my arteries being full of cement now, right?

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nope, I lied earlier. I'm trying to reply to things that are overdue and I just can't focus. This is really annoying. I'm gonna go do something else and see if my brain wants to work later. Sorry.

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