I would be remiss if I didn’t post about the weekend soon, as in a few ways, its been an important one, even if I don’t really realise the why’s and wherefore’s fully yet, there are things even I can say were important. I’ll also apologise now for typos and bad grammar, I’v’e part written this from my tablet, and it isn’t fantastic at doing what I type.
Friday saw me get through work, and then head to tutoring, and race home to get sorted for a friend coming over for the evening. She and I have been saying we’d do this for a while now, so it was good to finally get together. We were both incredibly tired, so we watched some YouTube videos, had some food, and a couple of drinks, I introduced her to professor elemental, which as I’d hoped, she loved, and after converting the futon we went to bed pretty early.
I woke Saturday with a bit of dread about the meal that I had organised and planned, as I knew there was a chance that one of the people to have caused issue and raise questions could well be there, along with a couple of others I didn’t really want there, because they unsettle me., and my instincts tell me something is wrong when it comes to them. That doesn’t happen that often, so I do tend to listen when it does!
We headed down to Starbucks in town, which was the agreed meeting point as this was close to the restaurant, and gave time for people to arrive without too much stress. We ended up a little late due to football traffic, so hadn’t been there that long when everyone had arrived, including the other party. I ran to the bank to pay in cash before it closed, and came back, at which point I was asked what the plan was, so I confirmed that nothing had changed and we were still eating at 1.30. I was then quizzed about the restaurant policy and whether children would be allowed in without eating and a whole bunch of stuff I had pushed back on the previous day, when they intimated they might come, as it was pretty easy to call/pop in to the restaurant. I said that I didn’t know, as I’d said that they needed to look at that. Then a hissy fit, and a scene and they marched off. Quite honestly, I was torn between just walking out and going home, or sitting down and bursting into tears. Both involved wanting furiously to disappear, as people had turned round and all sorts. As it was, I did neither. I pushed it to one side, so that others there wouldn’t be unnerved and panic, and we went and ate. I kept up the appearance that I was fine so as not to spoil anything and it worked. I won’t even deny that I had some fun, in spite of feeling absolutely horrible. And I knew that later, there would be a consequence to failing to deal with it there and then, but I did what was best, and it paid off.
I spent a fair amount of time thinking about and replaying things over in my head after that, wondering if there was something I’d missed, or could have done to have avoided that whole thing happening, and actually, I’m not sure that there was anything. I hadn’t shouted, or raised my voice, I simply stood my ground where previously I probably wouldn’t have. So I can’t really punish myself for starting to treat myself as I would treat someone else. And that is probably the first thing that stands out to me as being important.
In my head, I come at the bottom of the pile when it comes to things. I’ll do everything for someone else, but I don’t deserve to put myself first. I am not allowed to be selfish. That’s what the tickertape in my head tends to say anyway… There are other things it says too, but that’s one. So to have actually made a conscious decision to not try to please everyone but myself, even though I was still trying for the best overall result, it’s a step forwards. And I’m told it’s a big thing.
This leads on, to finish the story, about a decision I have come to after the week as a whole. Coming to the realiisation that I have been working my arse off to maintain friendships because I feel obligated to the other party for whatever reason, when actually they are quite happy to forget I exist unless I can be of use has meant that I have made the decision to step back from these people. Things have changed, and what once worked no longer does. And now I see that, I’m not sure it’s something I can continue. Again, I would, and have, said this course of action would be the best one to take if it were someone else in this situation. I know that it won’t be easy, because not only does it mean I’m accepting the change in them, I’m accepting that it can’t be fixed. But I have to believe that this is for the best. Now the battle begins to not cave in to the shitstorm it’s currently causing. I feel guilt that I didn’t do enough, and that maybe it could have been saved. Or maybe I did something wrong? I also feel guilt because I feel there’s a debt to be repaid. Guilt is a horrible emotion, truth be told, and one I wish I could eradicate. But then, I would truly be a nut case… This decision is the second important thing from this.
Thirdly, whilst talking through stuff, I think there may have been a start to destroying another phrase on the mental ticker tape. I was trying to explain why I feel obligated and generally act the way I do when it comes to why I put up with so much – jump through hoops, go many extra miles, beyond what is apparently expected of me, and it just came out. I don’t know if you ever have one of those moments, where you say something and as you say it you realise that what you are saying is TRUTH at it’s basest level. (Whether it’s actually true is another debate entirely) but you know you’ve reached the root? Bottom line is that I will do all of that, because as long as I am useful and of some value, then people will keep me about. I need to keep being of use and value because otherwise people will see the truth that I am useless (and worthless – which is what I didn’t say, but couldn’t actually voice that word) and that would leave me being abandoned and left alone. I have a few ticker tapes like that, but this one, after a bit of a stern (and neededly so) talking to is hopefully beginning to be broken. It’s not pleasant, and it’s damn painful, but it’s necessary. I’m not sure that these are things I have the strength to break on my own, as loathe as I am to admit that. But if it’s going to take people who are worth their salt to be firm and blunt then so be it. I’ve chosen to walk this road, along with everything that that entails. The ugly, the entrails, the hurt, and hopefully the better things at the end if I make it out of here. In some ways this is the biggest risk I’ve ever taken. I know I may not get to the end, and ‘m not sure I can do it alone, so I’m trusting my instincts that this is the right time to do this, and I’m trusting that there will be someone there to help me when I inevitably get to the point where I stumble, whether it’s a helping hand to pull me out from the water, or a kick into the fire. That’s a big deal for me. Because it’s me choosing to go against EVERYTHING I believe about myself, and a lot about the world in the hope that there is something better at the end of it, and that it, that I am worth that….
The weekend also brought the recognition that my brain is heading into overdrive again as well. I’ve never had a quiet brain, it never really stops, and is always busy doing something, even if I don’t consciously know what it is I’m thinking about (yeah, I know that sounds weird… although my description sounds even weirder…it’s almost like there’s someone else there, thinking about something, and I know that, but I don’t have any access to that thought, or who is doing the thinking. Although yesterday I did have a bit of a theory start to form about that too… and maybe it’s not actually that far fetched… but I digress) At least half of the reason I have trouble getting to sleep when I do (and I mean getting to sleep, not the night terrors, or nightmares, or stuff while I am sleeping) is because my brain won’t quieten, won’t shut up, won’t even slow down. I’m usually always thinking about at least three things, connecting different things together, or considering options, or mulling on ideas . I seem to be thinking harder and faster and longer of late though, and it’s actually making it a bit more difficult to mull some of this stuff over than I would like, especially when I’m trying to talk about it. I’m having to wade through five or six layers of stuff to get to what I want to say. Partly a defense mechanism? Possibly, I suppose. If I have other stuff I stop thinking about the things that hurt? Makes sense in a child’s logic kind of way, which I know my brain is partly wired on in some aspects. Take, for example now, I’m writing this at the same time as planning out meals for the next two weeks, listening to music, working on an idea for some fiction and debating where my other box of fabric is…. and it doesn’t really stop or quieten and somewhere in the midst I sleep.
It’s always been really hard to turn my brain off, and short of unconsciousness the only thing I know of that actually kind of works is having my head stroked. Unfortunately it’s not something I can do to myself and have it work, and until they make a pillow that can do that and release it commercially I’m out of luck. And sometime even that doesn’t work fully. So this is something I need to look at, somehow… not sure how, so feel free to make suggestions. One thing has been suggested, which I am willing to try and I will see if I can get that sorted.
It’s not necessarily a question of focus either… because I can do that, even if it takes a concentrated effort. On Sunday I went to the Shamanic Drumming workshop being run from time to time. I was feeling a little apprehensive as I knew I wasn’t feeling great – I’d slept badly the night before, not getting to sleep until close to 6am, and then having bad dreams, and was still torn up over what had happened this week, and didn’t want that to spill into other people’s experiences, as my energy was not that great. So decided to focus on putting everything else to one side as much as I could. Two things happened through the afternoon. During one drum, we’d set off the beat as reindeer, and then moved to the wolf. Sometime in there I’d managed to gain that focus, as I began to smell the pine forests, and could taste the air – it was the same as when I used to run cross country in the middle of winter through the woods, when your lungs kick up a level and convert more efficiently. It’s very VERY rare that I get sensory input like that, anymore, even in my nightmares, with the exception of pain, and very occasionally tactile sensation (like in my recurring nightmare, I know I’m locked in a wooden trunk because I can feel the grain of the wood) so that in itself was a really good odd thing. When I was a lot younger, I could completely immerse myself into other places, with full senses going, but that all stopped when I went into hiding, and until yesterday it’s not something I ever thought I’d experience again. Another reason to keep walking this path…. even if it would be easier to just stop fighting with myself, throw all my defenses up to maximum and keep on keeping on. Instead I’m choosing the harder road. And keeping my defenses down, until I can disassemble and rebuild them, and also to chip against the walls. From inside and out.