Bit of a catch up…

well, I haven’t posted in a little while… mostly as I’ve been busy!

The last while has seen me undertaking crazy-ass length weeks whilst exam period approached for my students, and I have had other things going on too.

However I have managed to fit in some other things too… and also had a few interesting bits…

I’m just going to recap on the interesting things I think… as I need to document them for reference, and I don’t really have the time or inclination to really go through a big recap.

So first thing is that I got a new set of Tarot cards- I found them on offer on Amazon and went for them. So far it’s been fun learning how to use them, as well as how the deck wants to be used. I’m getting better at record keeping as well, so that’s another bonus.

Second thing is that I found a staff. We went on a tree walk – with the intention of looking to communicate with trees. Unfortunately, external influences meant that that wasn’t something I felt able to pursue on that day, but it *was* good to go out into nature and spend a bit of time out of the city. I went and found a nice place to sit in some OLD woodland, and after a while I turned around and found some sawn beech, the top piece of which was the perfect size. I could swear that it wasn’t there previously! This has now been stripped back to a layer that wanted to be revealed and is drying out a bit while I look towards what and how to use it in the future.

The third thing happened on Sunday, at the drumming circle I’m a part of. We’d started to undertake some slightly less simple things, and one exercise was trying to beat an alpha wave rhythm, and then seeing where it went from there. The first attempt was someone else going off to somewhere they needed to be, The second attempt, after a while, I found myself drumming a new rhythm. What it was I couldn’t really tell you now, but it fit at the time, and it felt like someone was tickling my neck… I started moving my head a bit to try and dissipate the itch, but to no avail, as it spread down my arm, and suddenly realised that my arm holding the drum and shoulder were rather furry. The itching was hair sprouting and as my arm moved with the beat, I could feel the fur moving, and the breeze running through it. I wouldn’t say that I was terrified, but certainly didn’t expect it, and there’s a bit of fear there. As to what the fur was I don’t know, as I didn’t see – I could only feel, but when we stopped, I got COLD. And by cold I mean arms (both of them) going blue. I had to go and warm them up with the heater in the bathroom. 
So yeah… I guess more change on the way, and where I go from here…. not sure, but I guess it’s time for the next steps… whatever they may be… 

 

What we have here….is failure…. to communicate….

I’ve found it hard to write recently.

Mostly down to lack of time, as when I do feel able to write, I’m inevitably in no position to be able to do so. Then if I do sit down, there are no words. Something that happens a lot lately.

I’ve learnt and realised an awful lot of late. Too much to list. Some of the things I don’t know I know yet… but I know them… if that makes sense?

And I’ve been the busiest I’ve ever been between students and other commitments, work, and those I care for. I knew that it would be a struggle, but all of a sudden, mid June, and the end is in sight. I’d joked a while ago that I’d scheduled the weekend everything finishes as being the weekend I fall apart and break down. I’m not sure that isn’t too far from the truth to be honest. More and more I feel weighed down physically as well as in other ways by the weights I tend to bear. The world would probably be an exaggeration, but sometimes isn’t too far off.  The thing is that balances out the forces pushing outwards from the inside. Well, that’s usually the case. There’s an imbalance of late. Which is why I’m feeling it more. Maybe I will need to look at both sides to try and sort them out.  I’m still finding myself unable to express myself, and to speak about things, or write, or anything really when it comes to some things. I’m beginning to understand that a little more on that front I think… and it was always going to be an issue at some point – I found my sneaky little birth chart going through some papers yesterday and re-read it and for the first time realised just how… different I am in some ways to others. Most of the charts I see are generally spread over a few things. Mine isn’t. At some point I might post it up… but I think come mid-June, there will be changes made.

Recently started helping a very very good friend, who has helped me a lot of late. It’s nice to be able to reciprocate in some small way as I like being able to show I care by being able to help, not just so I retain a modicum of usefulness and therefore a reason to be kept around…so this is good.  Reminded me I have stuff I need to sort too. And of course we have some plans made,  short, medium and longer term..and it’s kinda nice to have a partner in crime and things to look forwards to.

First thing I need to do though, ultimately is get through the door that’s appeared and has been making itself more and more known of late. Just let me get to mid June first… or at least a point where I get enough time to actually spend looking at it….and then deal with the inability to talk…. and then… well… there’s a whole list. But one thing at a time eh?

 

time to fade away… it’s better than burning out.

On a good day I sometimes see myself as a fixer. I turn up, facilitate what is needed, whether it’s networking, encouragement, revealing a truth, or something practical…storm in a teacup if you like, and once the ripples settle, and things are moving the way they should, it’s time for me to move on. Little bit like Nanny MacPhee I guess… (!)

Today is not a good day.

Today I see myself as the hindrance to progress. I notice that I remove myself from the picture and things go better. Days like today it’s very hard to fight the idea that maybe I would be better off removed. That maybe I’m holding people back from their progress by being around.

Mostly though I’m angry. At myself more than anything. For listening, and for not listening. For pushing myself that bit too far, when I should have listened to the voice telling me to turn tail and flee. I’m angry at everything the last day or so though, and I DON’T like that. Last night I was hesitant about venturing into town because of St Patrick’s day, and the potential crowds and rowdiness.
I’d spoken to a friend about it, who’d said I should try to see my friends and not worry too much about what might not even happen. So I sucked it up and decided to go. I didn’t even have to get into town before encountering what I didn’t want to meet. They got on the bus. But, I decided I would push through and be able to calm down and would be OK. What I should have done, was got off the bus and turned around and gone home. Instead, I managed to calm down a bit, got the admin I needed to do out of the way, and realised that I wasn’t feeling brave enough to really talk to anyone. I ignored another point where I could have chosen to go home. Instead, telling myself it’ll be OK… and then some rather loud people got to playing some game, which set me right on edge again…and it was all downhill from that point. I came across as awkward, and I don’t know what… because I ended up feeling a bit interrogated when I asked a question, which made me want to RUN. I sat on it, but I was glad to be able to escape, and that isn’t right. I went home and went to bed. Not even an episode of QI helped, so I went to bed.

I woke up again covered in bruises. Second day in a row, although not the same place this time. Yesterday I’d blatantly been held down by the chest, as I can make out the handprints (there’s no way I could have done it to myself without removing my arms and switching them round… ) this morning, it’s my arms and shoulders that are suffering. Thank goodness for long-sleeved tops is all I’ll say about coming to work today. I don’t know what has happened while I’ve been sleeping – I remember struggling against being pinned and the bed being a mess upon waking up, so obviously been tossing/turning/writhing, but who or what I’ve been rallying against, I don’t have a clue. I’m not sure I want to either to be honest, although I also don’t want it to continue either. Ironic really, that normally I’m wanting to not remember what I dream about, that the one time it might be a good idea to have a clue is the one time I don’t. I’ll admit to being a bit uneasy about it, maybe even a little scared.

It’s certainly not the first time that what has happened in my dreams has spread into the real world, and it’s not even the worst occurances. The worst was being sliced in the ribs by a sword in my dream, and waking up to find my side opened up – 6″ long and a good half inch deep. No blood or anything, and nothing I could have done it on. And witnessed. I’ve woken up covered in scratches across my face and arms from being raked by claws, when I have no nails able to do that. And I’ve had bruises before I have a photo of the giant one in the middle of my back which a friend had found after I’d complained of back pain. A couple of weeks ago, I had a scar appear on my right arm overnight, including the ridge. The ridge has gone, but the scar is still there, and if I’d had the corresponding injury to it, I would have known. Why it happens, and why it comes through to waking life, I don’t know. Wish I did! I’d like to understand it… but this feels different. I can’t explain why or how, maybe it’s because there is a definite handprint, or maybe it was the feeling of being pinned down and the panic associated with that, I don’t know…. but there is a point where it starts to sound a little crazy, even to me. And I think this is getting to that point. I don’t have a clue where to begin as to understanding it, let alone being able to do something about it… any any suggestions would be welcomed, cause I’ll consider anything as an option, even that I’m just losing my sanity. I’m sure plenty think that… and maybe they are right. I don’t know… but this is a bit odd, even for me…. are alarm bells ringing for anyone else??

lazing on a Sunday afternoon.

This is the first weekend that I’ve had completely off in a while. I always try to not pack my weekend out because I’m so busy through the week, and a typical weekend now usually consists of Saturday mornings being filled with admin/chores/housework, and soon, thanks to exam season fast approaching, extra tutoring, before heading out for roleplay/catch up with friends, and more often than not, staying over on Saturday, and heading back on Sunday. This works quite well, for a lot of reasons, one being that it motivates me to get the boring stuff out of the way by Saturday lunchtime, otherwise I have to tackle it on the Sunday evening, which just leaves it hanging over the weekend. It also means that I don’t just become a hermit, and hide, which would be a bit too easy for me- especially of late, and it means I actually have some downtime factored in, as well as a ready excuse for the inevitable contacts of “oh its the weekend, you can help with….” Which if I only have my own stuff to get done gets the response of “oh well, you can move that around, squish this in…” And because I’m a pushover, I usually say yes, and then end up without the time to do the admin/housework/my stuff afterwards, whereas plans with others are a lot more difficult to dismiss out of hand.

This weekend though, I went away to visit friends I haven’t seen in a while, which has been a really nice change, although it has been really really weird to have a weekend with such a slow pace, as I feel like I haven’t “done” anything. I arrived on Friday evening, before I would have gotten home had I been tutoring, and got a sandwich, watched a gameplay video and had an early night. Yesterday, we went out for a walk around the centre of the town, had lunch out, and then got ingredients for me to make cake (as I always make something by request of my hosts) and watched a fair bit of River cottage, whilst trying to work out how I would make said cake. I succeeded with the cake, which was a berry topped chilli chocolate cake, and watched some random quiz stuff before bed. Today I’ve gotten up, read a bit, and will probably go for a little walk, to take advantage of the sun before heading home later.  Seems like nothing really, but actually, I’ve had time to think about stuff that’s been going round my head, as well as plan out a little more of my book, which I’ll probably get on with on my way home, and generally have a little bit of time to REST, and therefore, heal.

I’ve still had a fair amount of pain this weekend, but its not been all over, and its been manageable, and has lessened over the time in proportion to my inactivity. Now, my shoulders and upper back are what’s causing trouble, along with my arms, and that to be honest probably has more to do with being hunched up in pain the last few days than anything else, and I daresay a good massage would go a long way to sort that out too (I should be that lucky though), although that’s something I can put up with.

I think I need to look at my time management again, and plan in small patches of downtime through the day. I manage this quite well at work, but I could make better time of it in transit, for example, which might help things along a bit. I also need to try and get back on top of sleep, and eating properly, which means I just need to give myself a good kick up the arse more than anything! Because I’ve been feeling really crappy in general and tearing myself to pieces I stop caring about it, but I need to just do it, even if it means setting reminders on my phone, or notes on the fridge. I also need to go through food groups and make sure I’m planning enough of things in said foods, and generally make it so I try and look after myself a bit, even when its the last thing I want to do.

This week I’ve had to face up to the fact that I simply can’t get away with doing things I had done in the past, when I’ve ended up feeling that bad, and, again, having to challenge myself over the fact that if it was someone else doing that to themselves I wouldn’t stand by and let them. Whether I outrightly challenged it or tackled it by stealth would depend on the person, but I wouldn’t let it stand, so I should let myself do it either.

So, yes, I have screwed up recently. A lot. I don’t think it would be helpful to explain the various how’s and why’s right now, as I’d just end up more annoyed at myself, and lo and behold we’d be starting it all over again. But I can always hope that next time, I will do better, and spot myself falling before I am forced to acknowledge I fell a while before. Not just talking about not looking after myself here, but the same goes. Its just easier for me to talk about that context, than all the other things.

Possibly time to make a few lists as well, and then discuss how best to tackle them…. As well as try to realise that i may not have to try and do this all by myself, and that i dont have to shut myself away until ive fixed things…But one step at a time I think, at least until I can learn to walk again….

 

cracks appear in the well worn veneer.

I’m very very used to being able to go about daily life and not have anyone notice when something isn’t fine. So when I find that to not be the case, it raises questions for me.  Does this mean that the mask is wearing thin? Is it getting too much for me to be able to disguise? Or is it actually that I mostly get away with it because people don’t look that closely.

At the moment, I think it’s probably a little of everything… but the biggest truth is is that I’m getting tired of fighting. With myself, with others and with the world at large. Everyone has demands of me, up to and including just to be myself. That’s the one I probably find hardest I think. People think I am all these things, and I probably appear that way, and in some cases it might even be true. But there are things I am not. Or maybe just that I’m realising that I don’t *have* to be those things.  But then if I don’t have to be then what does that leave??

I know I’m talking vagueries again but I’m trying to actually express something that isn’t verbal in my head… so maybe it’s better to start at the beginning and see if that helps..

Last week I came to the realisation (with some help I should add) that I have friends who are not really friends. They are happy enough when they want something, or I can do/give/be something for them, but at other times they really don’t want to know.  This was proven and cemented when I had an encounter with them for the first time in a pretty long time and within an hour, I’d been asked for a favour. I wasn’t even asked how I was or why I’d not been about in the previous time.  Me being me, I did it, and it took having to hint majorly to get even a thank you.  In the past, this one sided “friendship” was acceptable for me, and I would quite happily be the doormat, because it was better than the alternative.  And it meant at least I had ‘friends’.

The changes over the last year though have made me wonder if maybe I am actually capable of better, and there have been better people come into my life who are showing me this is possible too.

So after this last week, and very clearly deciding that actually being treated like that isn’t acceptable, if only because I wouldn’t allow my friends to be treated like that, and I would never treat them like that, came last night.  Another person tried to assert their…will…I guess over me, and I fought back. I know that I did the right thing in denying them, especially when the daggers started to fly, and yet I ended up feeling completely guilty over doing it. This person I’ve known for a very long time. around 10 years in fact. They’ve been exceptionally important at times in the past, especially when I fell apart and no-one noticed.  It was actually this person who stopped me from bottoming out irretrievably. Thinking about that now though, it was purely because they happened to turn up and catch me completely defenseless. But, to their credit, they dropped everything and to some extent saved me from the abyss. Which may actually be why I feel so guilty. I feel like I owe them something I can’t actually repay.  I’d never thought of it like that until just now. But I think they may also know how I feel, because they know me well enough to know. And know it’s something they can use to keep me at their whim. Except they tried last night and it didn’t work.

I don’t know. But I know that I ended up feeling close to breaking point last night.  This is where it sounds odd. I could feel the pain, physically, but knowing that it wasn’t physical pain, but could feel the knots and wounds twisting and pulling and generally trying to tear me apart on the inside.  Something that however I try, I fail to explain. I do wish that the ability to transfer feelings existed (I think it’s star trek that has something like it.) Just so when someone who does notice and asks ‘what’s wrong’ instead of failing utterly to try and explain I could instead just take a hand and press it into that and let them feel. Because I don’t have a way to explain it.

That pain scares me though, because I know it’s trying to get out, and even though I know it would be easier to not fight and let it go and ride it out, I’m not sure I can. I’m pretty sure that I will fight and fight until I *can’t* because I don’t want to feel like I failed. I already feel that way to an extent, because it’s *that* which I try to keep hidden. From myself as much as anyone else. Myself because I’m afraid of it, and from others because I don’t want to be a burden on them, or to make them run or push them away. And I’m finding it harder and harder to keep it hidden. Even I can see it in my eyes from time to time without having to look hard to see it.

I think the hardest thing though is coming to the realisation that maybe it’s OK to let someone else see, and that actually, it might not terrify them, make them run, or just decide they can’t be bothered. That’s been my hope for some time now, but the idea that it might actually be realised is in itself unsettling. I am however grateful beyond words to the people who have been teaching me that friendship – real friendship, is *not* what I have mostly seen so far. Although that brings it’s own challenges, because I don’t want to fail or disappoint people who have been there for no discernable reason, and want nothing in return.

Even trying to explain this and write this, I can feel the ‘thing’ making itself known. It’s more like snakes writhing as opposed to knotted tummy and simple anxiety. Maybe because while I’m shielding it, it retains a hold. I forget too often, that a wall can be built to keep things out, but it also keeps things in. Maybe it’s time to take the wall down…  I just know that I’m tired. And I’m not sure I want to fight anymore. And I’m not sure I want to make the effort to hide.  Whatever that means…. whatever that may bring.

I wither, and render myself helpless….

Well, last night, I’m pleased to report that I did actually sleep. It took me a while to nod off, having been quite anxious, but once I did, I managed, partly I think through sheer exhaustion…but I’m not going to object to that at all, and don’t remember what, if anything I was dreaming about, but I’m going to guess something, as when I did wake up at 7-ish I had tears streaming down my face and feeling extremely sad, but at the same time quite disassociated from it… It’s a really peculiar feeling to try and describe, and I know I won’t really come anywhere close to it – I think you’ll either get it, or you won’t…

Anyways, made sure I had my headphones, and whacked the music on on the way into work. Anyone who checks the music I have on anything will probably be pleasantly surprised and horrified in equal proportion at the selection sat on there. On my phone, it’s just whatever random stuff happened to be laying about.. at the moment, Bowie, Dire Straits, The Rasmus, a playlist I was learning for a wedding, Megadeth and Ramnstein…

So getting lyrics to a Dream Theater song stuck immovably in my head usually means my brain is trying to tell me something… so yeah… for once it’s not obscure and half hidden… at least I don’t think so… Those who know me know I’m not a massive fan of Dream Theater as it gets very pretentious and complicated, but occasionally they do come out with a gem or two, especially lyrically… and they actually did this version themselves – stripping it back to just voice and piano – which invariably is the version I have going round my head…

Wither – by Dream Theater

Let it out, let it out, fill the empty space
So insecure find the words and let it out
Staring down, staring down, nothing comes to mind
Find the place turn the water into wine

But I feel I’m getting nowhere
And I’ll never see the end

So I wither and render myself helpless
I give in and everything is clear
I breakdown and let the story guide me

Turn it on, turn it on, let the feelings flow
Close your eyes, see the ones you used to know
Open up, open up, don’t struggle to relate
Lure it out, help the memory escape

Still this barrenness consumes me
And I feel like giving up

So I wither and render myself helpless
I give in and everything is clear
I breakdown and let the story guide me
I wither and give myself away

Like reflections on the page
The world’s what you create

I drown in hesitation, my words come crashing down
And all my best creations burn into the ground
The thought of starting over leaves me paralyzed
Tear it out again, another one that got away

I wither and render myself helpless
I give in and everything is clear

I wither and render myself helpless
I give in and everything is clear
I breakdown and let the story guide me
I wither and give myself away

Like reflections on the page
The world’s what you create
The world’s what you create

Let it out, let it out
There are a few things I could draw from this… but as a whole I guess it’s pretty apt advice to give myself right now… except we all know the thing about advice… much easier to give than to take.  Especially when it’s yourself doing the giving!! If only I could just stop and actually allow this… but I just simply don’t know how to, however much I want to. Even if it means what i think it may mean.

Also… I am one of *the* most stubborn people I know, and I have a long history of fighting. Myself, the world, anything, and I do worry that this will be no different. Even if I know (which I do) that fighting will be of no help whatsoever, and could even make it worse, it’s so deeply ingrained that I need to fight against things that I can’t even stop myself. (I don’t use the word ‘can’t’ lightly or often, either. ) Then, there’s getting way ahead of myself as well, and wondering if by some miracle I manage to stop, surrender myself to the process and let it happen, what, if anything will be left? Then what happens? I don’t understand how people see me as confident and self-assured when I am so far from it that it’s almost laughable. But then I see the bits no-one else can. The insecurity and the fear that people will see what everyone else in their turn saw and decided. In my head it’s mostly a matter or time. Breaking that thought pattern is going to be the hardest thing I’ve ever done up to now. I just hope that it doesn’t break me permanently in the process as well…

 

Fires and Bon(e)fires

Heat is one of those things that *is* duality. It can be good or bad, a tool for healing, or a tool for harm. Destructive or refining. Sometimes both!

The last couple of days I’ve had multiple experiences of heat…

Last week I had a bit of an incident with my Trochantic nerve cluster – it’s happened before, and I believe it stems back to the winter I fell down a set of concrete stairs. Basically, the nerves decide to play silly buggers, and the only warning I get is a bit of a shooting pain in the hours leading up to the full attack. When it finally happened, I KNEW about it, and this was much worse than previous instances. It felt like a red hot poker had been jammed through my thigh.

There was no position I could stand, sit or lie in that stopped the pain, only one position lessened it some. Now I have a *high* tolerance for pain- hell, I’ve stitched myself back together before – literally, however I spent hours screaming into a pillow, just to get some of it out. Fortunately, when this happens, it only lasts for a day or so, and I eventually got painkillers delivered to me as soon as someone was able to go to Morrisons for Ibuprofen for me (as I don’t usually have it in) and I’d also put out a call to help to the person I taught my massage skills to, knowing that having spent 7 hours holding one leg up at an angle was going to cause problems of it’s own. So they duly arrived and helped mitigate those issues.

Since then, I’ve had varying degrees of pain in my pelvis and back, which I’d attributed to the fact I’d been compensating and also sleeping in a different position, so I duly dragged myself over for another session (which we’d both known would be necessary) at the weekend. However this time, there were four spots which when broached sent fire along the nerves. Oddly symmetrical as well. Even more bizarre was the sensitive spots I have on my ribs (due to various cracks and fractures) weren’t actually causing any issue.

I don’t know what was/is behind this, as it just seems a bit odd. Anyway, my friend, who also does reiki, decided this would be a good plan too, and again I felt fire – this time from their hands – which was again a bit unexpected, but this time it was a good thing.

Generally though, I see fire as a positive force – even when in a destructive setting, often it burns away that which is not necessary, or too damaged to be saved. and Fire can quite often be purifying. Another reason I’m looking forwards to sorting out a bonfire- another thing that people have forgotten the origins of. Time to get rid of some of the chaff I reckon…