Affection Affective

Interesting that one person’s touch and affection can be incredibly soothing, comforting, and make you feel safe while another’s is repulsive, makes your skin crawl, and your stomach turn.

Saw my parents tonight and both tried their hand at affection.  I never shy away from a hug or cuddle from my dad.  My mom, on the other hand, I try to avoid except for a pleasant hug before I leave.

If you’ve dug into my blog at all, you know exactly why I feel the way I do about my mom.  So when she tried to rub my neck and I stiffened up, it’d make sense to you. Thankfully, she quickly stopped.  When my dad was stroking my hair, though, he put me at ease and made me want to fall asleep.  I could have stayed that way for hours.

Honestly, I think my mom was jealous because I was responding favorably to my dad; she wanted to get in on it.  Not only do I find her repugnant as a human being, it’s too little too late, and it feels fake as hell. 

You don’t get to abuse me unmercifully, not apologize or own up to your bullshit,  continue to insult and shame me to this day, and then get my love returned. That’s not how this works anymore.  I spent most of my life being forced to love you without condition, forced to lift you up, forced to be your emotional lover, to the point that there was nothing left of me.  Not anymore. I won’t ever let you into my inner circle again.  Never.  I wish it weren’t so, but it’s your own damn fault, not mine. 

So, yeah.

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The End

My many masks, happy, successful, intelligent, used to keep the rising tides of depression at bay. I was the Poseidon of my mind, manipulating the dark seas that threatened to consume me. No longer capable of taming the choppy waters, my dinghy capsizes beneath me, and I wonder about the woman that I might have been. 

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Clarity

I am so glad that I was able to get in to a seminar with the bariatric surgeon before next Thursday.  I know that less than a week is not that long, but I was so desperate for a sense of knowing.  I do a lot of research before I do anything (it’s the lawyer in me) and this was the last piece of the puzzle as far as my decision about weight loss surgery was concerned.  With everything else going on, I needed this decision to be off my shoulders.

As you know, before the start of the seminar I was really nervous, but to be in a room where everyone else looked a lot like me and were undoubtedly feeling the same, it wasn’t too bad. Thank goodness!

Let me tell you that it was quite a profound and emotional moment to hear from a medical professional that obesity is a bona fide disease. To hear from a medical professional that it’s not a personal defect, like I always thought it was, put me to tears.  To hear that for the severely obese (like me), the success rate for losing a significant amount of weight without surgical assistance is less than 2%, means I am not a failure. I am not a failure. Halle-fricken-lujah.

Most of the information about the procedures, complications, etc. I already knew. Some of the statistics were really interesting to learn. One of the highlights was, of course, having a chance to get a few of my more burning questions answered by a doctor and by the patient advocate who has had the lap band.

Above all, the seminar was exactly what I needed to decide that I am definitely going forward with the surgery (gastric sleeve).  I need help to change this problem and there is no shame in that. 

My insurance requires a 3 month supervised diet (I can make an appointment with the nutritionist on Monday) then, so long as I get the all clear following my preliminary tests at month two, I’m covered for surgery.  So I could conceivably be in surgery as soon as July.  July!  I know It’s going to sound strange, but part of me hopes it gets scheduled on her birthday.  That way instead of celebrating her in any way, I can celebrate myself. But if I were to (God forbid) die on her birthday, she probably would not recover from that, especially if I hadn’t told her about the surgery beforehand.  No matter how rocky our relationship is, I don’t want that.  So, I’ll just leave it up to God. If He wants me to have surgery on her birthday, so be it.

I feel some peace, some trepidation,  some excitement and a whole lot of other things about surgery.  I must remember to pace myself,  take this one  step at a time, not let myself get discouraged, and trust the process.  The next portion of my efforts at complete healing have begun. 

By the way, thank you for your kind words recently, dear readers.  I’m incredibly happy to have a growing support group here in the blogosphere as I work through everything. I probably would not be at this point without it. You mean a lot more to me than you may know.  💜

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N.e.r.v.e.s.

Just a short post to say I’m nervous as hell this morning. Jittery. Excited. Anxious.  All of it and more.

The surgery center had a couple of cancelations for a sooner seminar… this morning!  Here we go. :)

Would say more, but I have to get ready or I’ll never make it in time.  Please pray that this helps me decide, once and for all, whether bariatric surgery is my next step along this journey of healing.

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Crock of Shit

That’s what she called it.  My attempt to bring something into her life that might help mend a bridge between us.  A crock of shit. 

Maybe some background.

You might remember that a couple of weeks ago I wrote a little bit about a book my therapist recommend I read, Healing The Shame That Binds You, by John Bradshaw.  I haven’t finished it yet, but it has already given me so many great insights into myself and my family dynamics, why I feel the way I feel, why I way I act the way I act, and is helping me see another side of the picture as far as my parents’ own abusive pasts are concerned.

I couldn’t help but buy two more copies.

One I gave to a friend at work (one of the few people in my trusted inner circle) who expressed real interest in it for her husband. The other, I bought for my parents to read.  Perhaps that was my first mistake. Or was having the hope that she and I were actually making a little progress my first mistake?

So, last night I sought her advice about a career issue.  She’s always been really good when it comes to those things.  I was feeling vulnerable about a choice I made and let her in on it.  I talked to her about how it’s been a rough week. She tried to convince me to work from home today.  I had no real desire to skip the office. Although it’s crazier than ever around there, I actually kind of like going in to work these days. Plus, I have a shit ton to do and there ain’t no rest for the wicked.  I know she means well, so I laughed it off.

Come lunch time, she texts me asking if I’ve left work for the day.  I was still in meetings at the time, and considering that my boss is on spring break with his kids all next week and is leaving me to run the show by my lonesome in his absence, an early day was not ever going to happen.  I see the text, but don’t respond because I have a hundred other things going on.

Then, at about 2:00 p.m., she shows up at my office unannounced.  Lets see, that makes this the fifth time I’ve seen her in the last two years? Someone please tell me how that would ever be appropriate, ever, please?  Naturally I can’t react, I’m at work.  She did bring food, a gesture of good will of some kind I suppose, so I acquiesce. 

I had also been wanting to find a time to give her the copy of Bradshaw’s book and happened to have it in my car. Perhaps after the week I had, it wasn’t the best timing, but now or never, right? I was obviously hesitant and as I handed it to her, I prefaced the delivery with something along the lines of, “I’ve been reading this book and it has really been helping me see a new perspective and I think it would help you and our relationship.”

I tried to explain a little bit about Bradshaw’s premise to her, how abuse turns into toxic shame and manifests in our lives, and why it’s been helpful, but was a bit inarticulate. Her response was two fold: she feels no shame (no surprise there) and an overly broad, narrow minded, and purely ignorant statement that self help books are all a crock of shit.  I couldn’t begin to come up with the right words and that was neither the time nor the place to get into the nitty gritty. So, I just assured her that if I didn’t think it would be helpful, I’d never have bought it for her.

As it turns out, what I heard and felt were: the hard work I’m putting into dealing with my issues is a crock of shit; the clarity and peace I’ve been discovering while reading this book is a crock of shit; the effort I’m putting into trying to maintain some type of relationship with them (and especially her) is a crock of shit; I am a crock of shit.

I am not a crock of shit, though.  Trust me, I am not a self help book kind of girl (wonder where that comes from) and never would have picked this one out on my own.  But my therapist, who has gotten to know my intelligent and analytical side, knows that I need data, case studies, and other scientific or empirical evidence to satisfy the logical side of my brain before the emotional aspect comes into play, recommended this book.  I’m learning to trust in him and this healing process and I have not been disappointed so far.

Why else would I have bought two more copies?  I’m an intelligent woman who struggles with emotion. This book has helped me tap into some of my most difficult emotions.  If I thought it was anything close to a crock of shit, I’d never have made it past the first chapter.

She is the crock of shit. I don’t think she’ll ever read it. 

That makes me incredibly sad.  In fact, that being a real possibility triggers so many familiar feelings of inadequacy, helplessness, and hopelessness. I really put myself out there by offering her a little look into what I’m doing in therapy. It would mean an incredible amount to me if they took the time to do a little work too. I was vulnerable with her in a mostly safe way, and I’m proud of that. I also know now that my self worth doesn’t hang on what she chooses to do with the book, or with anything really. Still, having that little bit of hope I had built up dashed is terribly disappointing. 

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Some Days

Today has been a shit ass day. This week has been a shit ass week. I want to crawl into a hole, cry, and never come out. My anxiety is in quite the state and I’m kicking my ass all over the place in my brain. From spraying gasoline all over myself the other day to feeling like an idiot in Court this morning, and getting stood up on a business dinner date tonight, this week can shove it. I quit.

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Blackout Poetry II

Been working on more pieces for the series of blackout poems I’m doing using pages chosen at random by friends from a book of English poetry and prose, c. 1917.

image

8
To the race of men,  be mindful:
The glory of kings was first found in the mansion of God.

image

444
A lovely grace
Whispered thy dream.
Sleep! Sleep!
Fair lady,
For at dawn
The lady is gone
Like a summer rain.

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111
I confess, friend,
There was nothing left for me.

There are a couple of others from this series on my first post, Blackout Poetry. More of my found poems are also on Instagram. Hope you like them :-)

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