T-36 Days!

Yes, that’s right! Provided I can successfully squeeze in a pulmonary clearance by 9/9, my surgery will be in 36 days on 9/28! Eek! I’m nervous, but excited and ready to keep tackling this challenge head on.

I mentioned a couple of posts ago that I was extremely worried about how overwhelmed I was feeling with all the craziness at work and the effect it was going to have on my ability to maintain my post-surgery lifestyle (and my sanity). Getting my surgery date and a deadline for the articles for the magazine I’m writing for made me realize that SOMETHING had to give, so I decided to quit my job and reopen my own law firm! Yeah, it’s a whole different level of stress (and I am still wondering whether or not it was the best decision right now), but I remain mostly at peace about the decision.  I’m scared, of course, because I’ve been down this road before and it didn’t work out for me; but I feel like I’ve got a better idea what I need to do to be successful this time around and am trying hard to stay focused on that.

Since I put in my notice, I’ve been able to really destress, focus on good self care, and was doing pretty darn well staying positive (minus a few total freak outs lol). I’ve been using my new found freedom to take time to drive through Red Rock and Mt. Charleston to decompress and refocus.

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Glorious, right?! I’ve also been working and earning myself some money (praying this continues!), but at a much more manageable pace. Yay!

Last week was rough, though.

I had missed therapy the week before because of work (was engrossed in a project and lost complete track of time), plus I was late and had to rush the previous session two weeks before that because of a Court appearance that ran long. Running on three weeks between therapy sessions, and five weeks since my last GOOD session, I was already on a bit of a fine ledge emotionally.

Then, because the universe has a sick sense of humor, on my way to finally make up my missed therapy session late in the afternoon Wednesday of last week, I ran over a construction sign and mangled my tire! And, as I’m pulling the jack and spare tire out, I sliced my finger and was bleeding everywhere, but only after I broke a pearl necklace my cousin gave me for college graduation almost a decade ago.  Of course, as I was trying to clean myself up, I forgot to put the lid on a bottle of water and spilled it all over my driver’s seat.  Thankfully, despite the excessive heat warning, a nice stranger named Bryce and my dad showed up to help me get back on the road; but for icing on the shitty afternoon cake, it turns out my other front tire was super bald and so I needed two new tires and an alignment!

That was almost $500 that I REALLY didn’t need to be spending right now.  Ugh.

My crap afternoon was more than enough to send me over the edge into this funky ass depression that I’ve been trying to crawl out of since.  Why did I quit my job? Am I stupid? How am I ever going to make my life work? Why did I add this worse stress in place of a stress that was at least paying my bills? How AM I going to pay my bills?! What if I fail? I’m a failure. I’m an idiot. These are the thoughts that have come rushing in with depression’s black cloud. All over a blown tire.

Thankfully, my therapist was able to fit me in for an appointment on Thursday. After my usual bitching, we did another inner child exercise that focused on my debilitating perfectionism and fear of failure (which I definitely need to figure out). It was intense and left me feeling really raw.  Emotional hangovers are real, people!

Inner child work is strange, but highly effective. I don’t have the energy to fully explain it tonight, but it’s essentially a way of tapping into and connecting with your childhood self as a way to resolve childhood trauma by providing your childhood self (who is utterly confused, angry, and desperately hurting) with the comfort you needed, but didn’t get, at the time. It’s an odd duality, speaking of and to yourself like that, but it actually works. 

The process is tough, though, bringing up pure unadulterated emotion. After all, you’re finally providing your childhood self a safe platform to express your truest feelings and be supported while doing so. It’s a strange, loving, caring temper tantrum of sorts inside your mind.  For me, when my inner child is scared and unable to trust me (knowing that I can’t even trust myself is so hard), my breath fully catches in my throat and my stomach constricts on itself like I’m in danger. The physical trauma responses are just the same now just as if I were living it originally as as a kid. I’m carrying all that trauma with me daily and inner child work is designed to help finally let it out and let it go.

This session, with the comfort I was providing my inner child while examining one of the first times I felt an enormous pressure to be perfect and felt like I had failed (when I got my only B of elementary school in second grade), I was finally able to let myself actually feel some of the crushing weight of how unfair it was that I lost my childhood as I did. I still haven’t been able to let myself fully go there, but I did a little more than I’ve ever been able to do before. It’s such exhausting, rewarding, trying work. 

Friday I was a complete wreck, so I took the day off to recouperate, because I’m my own boss and I can do those things. :)  Now, it’s Sunday evening and sleep is calling my name, but I hope you all had a great weekend. I didn’t do much myself, but that was exactly what I needed. 

Good night, friends.  💜

Check out my art and follow my journey on Twitter, Instagram., and in my Etsy shop.

Fire Under My Butt

Getting my surgical consult date really set a fire under my ass.  I’ve made some big life decisions that I was pondering heavily and wavering on. I really just needed to freaking decide already, and i have.

Work is moving in the right direction. Surgery and weight loss are progressing steadily. Support is all coming in at just the right time.  It seems that the universe has been listening to my prayers, because everything is starting to click into place like a beautiful puzzle.  It’s about time after the few years I’ve had. 

I feel really grateful.  Overwhelmed.  But positive. 2015 is my year, damnit. I deserve it.

Oh, and my bestie Tracy got me this beautiful leaf and pearl necklace to commemorate all that the future holds. On the back, it says est. 2015.  God I love her.  💜

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Check out my art and follow my journey on Twitter, Instagram., and in my Etsy shop.

One Step Closer

I finally heard back from the surgical center this week and got my consult with the surgeon scheduled for August 5! Apparently I’ll get my surgery date at the time of consult, which should be four or so weeks later. So… surgery in early to mid September! Eek! I’m nervous as hell. I’m excited beyond belief. I’m trying to get all my ducks in a row. I’m having a hard time not feeling a bit overwhelmed by it all.  Just have to remind myself (I’m like a broken record in my mind here) to keep taking this process one. day. at. a. time.

I ended up telling my parents about surgery this week.  I struggled with the decision for months and was adamant that I wouldn’t tell them, but it was getting too weird not to. Surgery is a huge part of my life at the moment and it will continue to be for, well, forever. It went over pretty well. Dad was typical dad – don’t go with the first surgeon, it’s a total life change, do your research.  Yeah dad, I know.  Mom was excited (I thought she might be), but of course the conversation with her was immediately about how she wants to be involved and had to include a “no, I don’t need you there, I’ve got this covered.” She was disappointed, but she seems like she’ll be respectful of my wishes there. My parents are intentionally my 5th string on the support team. This is about my own very personal transformation, inside and out; I need to keep it that way, even if it’s hard for anyone else.

Unfortunately, I’m already slightly regretting the decision, because my mom threw around a couple comments about how it’ll be when I lose all my weight yesterday. I had to shut her down, because I try not to think that far ahead and, truly, just don’t want to discuss that aspect of it with her. I don’t even know what my day tomorrow will be like and If I think about all the future possibilities surgery-wise, I get too anxious.  Mindfulness means staying in the present, so I constantly have to reel it in and think short term.  What’s done is done, I’ve got to deal with it now.

Naturally, because the universe loves me, life beyond WLS continues to be crazy.

I’m struggling with keeping my head on straight at work these days. Between almost daily court appearances, boss regularly being out, and an intense caseload, it’s tough. I’ve been a networking mad woman this month too (which is incredibly tiring for this gal with introvert tendencies).  Having a crazy schedule and stressful career constantly concerns me when it comes to surgery, but it’s my life. I’ll figure it out.

I also recently got an invitation to be a contributing writer for a new local lifestyle and culture magazine launching October 3. We had a meeting yesterday, and it turns out that rough drafts are due August 29 and final drafts are due September 12 (all right around surgery, of course)! It’s a great opportunity, but something I’ve never done before. Plus, as I wrote here just the other day, appealing to the masses gives me a brain cramp and serious writers block. Everyone seemed to like my ideas, but I’m definitely feeling out of my element here. Intimdation. Insecurity. Check and check. For some reason, this opportunity landed in my lap, though, so I’m going to make it count!

Unfortunately, because yesterday was an overwhelming day on all fronts, I ate like crap for dinner.  I was struggling with head hunger all day and my fridge is low on easy good for me food (time for grocery shopping), so I went to Carl’s Junior. I’ve been there on this journey and done pretty well, just getting a cheeseburger and nothing else. I fell into old habits for the night, though. I’m disappointed in myself and feel a bit sick because of it this morning, but today is a new day! I’m not going to let it ruin my overall progress.

Slow and steady wins the race! Have a beautiful day, friends :)

Check out my art and follow my journey on Twitter, Instagram., and in my Etsy shop.

Food!

I’ve had writers block lately.  I get into this mindset where I desperately want to write something you all actually give a shit to read. I want to stand out as something special to you, to the world, to myself. As more people pass through, follow, comment and like, the harder it becomes to live up to my expectations for that.  In other words, I have forgotten why I started blogging in the first place: for me; for my sanity; for the lonely girl, woman, man or person out there who might chance upon this blog and finally feel they’re not alone.  Writing for the masses is not why I started writing. So, no offense, but I have to forget about all of you.

I have been trying to continue to be patient about surgery, but it’s not easy. Patience has never really been a virtue of mine, unfortunately; when I want something, I go for it and I want results now. And boy do I want to have this surgery like nobody’s business. I want nothing more than to shed this fat suit. I want to do all the things my weight has been keeping me from. I want to be comfortable in my own skin. I want to be beautiful.

I have also been working very hard to get into the right mindset for surgery. No, its not about my jean size. I’ve been tackling my food issues in earnest, and it’s so hard. Eating less, being more mindful about what I eat, when I eat, how I eat, and the hardest of all: why I eat.

Why do I eat?

I eat for a lot of reasons. I eat because I was forced to. I eat for comfort. I eat because it makes me feel something other than the crushing sadness and anger deep in my soul. Well, I used to think eating made me feel good, but that’s not true anymore. Eating does make me feel good in the moment, when my seratonin levels are raging. When I overdo it, though, I feel like shit; I feel guilty, gross, gargantuan. It was this sick self fulfilling prophecy that I used to engage in more than I care to admit.

Eating better, eating less, eating slowly, eating to live rather than living to eat is what makes me feel really good, now. Some days I fall right back into old habits, but those days are fewer and getting farther between. It’s a struggle, but I’m making noticeable progress. I’m down a solid 18 lbs. now, but more importantly I’m feeling like I’m developing a healthier relationship with food.

I have to keep working. Daily. I also have to keep waiting.

Although the gal who did my psych eval said I passed, it apparently takes a week to tell the surgery center that. That week was up this past Wednesday, which means I should be seeing the surgeon any second right? Wrong. Everyone who could possibly approve my chart for surgical consult is apparently on vacation until Monday, which means that surgery probably won’t be until September. Or, it’ll be at a time in August when my friends are all gone and I’ll be alone through the worst of recovery. Trying to still be patient and have faith that God won’t give me a surgery date that will leave me vulnerable and without a support network.

On another note, I almost told my parents about surgery yesterday. It’s becoming more complicated not to. Or maybe I’m just so comfortable with the idea now, I’m not that worried about letting them know. Or is it that I’m feeling more careless? I don’t know. Either way, I didn’t do it. I’m still not quite ready, but I hate hiding things. I hate being silent, but these are the people that made me hate the need for hiding things in the first place. I dunno. I’m still confused by this part, obviously.

So, we wait.

Check out my art and follow my journey on Twitter, Instagram., and in my Etsy shop.

Off to Surgeon!

Last Wednesday, I had my final dietician appointment. Lost a couple more pounds, so I’m keeping right on track! Every time I feel like I’m sure I haven’t done enough, but something I’m doing is working.

Later in the afternoon I was in therapy (my therapist is awesome and fit me in after my meltdown the weekend before). It was a bit of a weird session for me. I wasn’t sure what to say and felt like I kept repeating myself. But I left feeling positive like I usually do; I’m glad I went.

This week I finally got my PCP to send over all my labs and clearances to the surgeon’s office. Yay!

Then I had my psych eval this morning.  I was concerned about it, honestly. I do have a history of mental illness, after all. This pre-op phase has definitely affected my anxiety and depression, has opened me up to new triggers. The heightened stress and extra responsibility at work has been super hard. And I have regularly worried that maybe because of the extent of my trauma and the early stage of my recovery (3 years doesn’t feel very long in this process), I’m not ready. The psychiatrist could say I need more time.

I think too much. I passed.

The psychiatrist intern chick that was subbing in for the doctor gave me some nice encouragement about having all the tools/support I need in place. It was hard being super full disclosure with her, but I’m glad I did, because it was reassuring to know that despite all the luggage I unpacked on her, I still got the green light. I had to know.

She recommended I continue therapy (duh) and join a support group. I definitely want to do that.

So, yeah. On to the surgeon! I’ve just got to call and bother my patient advocate, because she should have everything now! Diet, psych eval, labs, clearance, etc. She had said once everything was in, it should only be a few days. Then a few weeks later would be surgery! That would be great!

Fingers crossed, y’all!

Check out my art and follow my journey on Twitter, Instagram., and in my Etsy shop.

What I Know

I haven’t been able to cry. I need to cry that ugly cry, but it’s not coming.  Soon.

In the meantime, I’m eating all sorts of carbs to avoid the emotions. Thankfully the carbs are being trashed and I’m working hard to try to process all my emotions like a big girl. Lol  It’s been an incredibly hard couple of weeks, but I have a game plan and know what I need to do to make sure my life continues to improve, no matter what. 

But yeah. Food issues. Emotional problems. Work. Sucks. All of it all at once at the moment. Life.

I haven’t had an opportunity to ask Christie why she said she thought she knew about the abuse. It’s anxiety inducing, but I have some peace being nearly certain that there’s nothing that she could know that would be new to me. My worst anxiety has happened when the long ignored (but never really forgotten) memories come to surface. So, of course, I still worry there are things I have yet to remember; but I’ve examined the many scary nooks and crannies in the dark recesses of my brain and think I’ve gotten it all out. The rest is just anxiety. And we all know, anxiety is a bitch.

Theres also comfort in knowing that whatever it is that she may know can’t be changed. Its the past. And I can’t keep hanging on to the past. Embracing the future in all its uncertain glory makes me feel vulnerable and anxious, but the future is full of hope.  My past is not.

Every day is moving forward and I have to enjoy the ride. 

So, tonight, 311 concert at Mandalay Bay Beach! It’s going to be hot as eff. Totally worth it. Just pray for no sunburn! Stay safe and sane out there tonight y’all! :)

Check out my art and follow my journey on Twitter, Instagram., and in my Etsy shop.

What They Knew (Part II)

Christie’s words have left me reeling.

What did she know? How could she know? Did I tell her? I don’t remember. I hope she does.  Because I want to know; I need to know.  It’s going to be hard to hear, but I need to know what it is that made her say that.

When I got to Tracy’s, I was about to boil over with tears. Tracy and I hadn’t seen each other in a few weeks  (my fault), so we had some catching up to do before I could get the words together. It wasn’t long before I couldn’t hold it in any longer. I could barely choke out the words over my tears. 

Tracy of course, knew how difficult my week had already been before Christie’s bomb on my brain and her unadulterated response was, “Wow.”  I told her, “I’m glad I wasn’t overreacting about feeling how heavy this is.” I really struggle with identifying and trusting my emotions, so her validation was just what I needed. I love her for everything she does for me (which she totally knows). 💜

Yeah, so I had a really bad Friday/Saturday, but did everything I could think of as self care, including setting a mid-appointments appointment with my therapist. Talked to my close friends. Colored. Read. Distracted. Two days of no sleep.  Then sleep. Lots of sleep. The emotional hangover is real, people. I’m actually kind of proud of how I’ve been handling things, considering.

Anyways. I have yet to get the courage to ask Christie what she knows. It’s coming, though.

I often wonder…

Who knew? What did they know? That’s really all I need to know. 

With that said, I know of one cousin that semi-actively follows my twitter (the only place I share my blog now). I don’t want to call him out by name, but he spent a year of his childhood with us kids, and he should know who he is. While I don’t know if he’ll ever read this, if he does i want him to know: I don’t think I want to know what you knew, no matter what the answer is.  Not yet, anyways.

Ultimately, I know that anyone who may have known something will tell me as much just as quickly as the universe has planned for me to hear it. Asking Christie what she knew will also happen in due time. In the meantime, the emotional tornado somewhat rages on.

I’ll keep you posted. Because, #nomoreshame.

Check out my art and follow my journey on Twitter, Instagram., and in my Etsy shop.