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August 15, 2013

My fingers hover over my keyboard as I try to pinpoint what I need to write about. Writing is something that frees me, but it doesn’t always naturally come out. It takes some searching and thinking to get to a point where I know what thread to follow.

A few days ago, my partner and I broke up. Or rather, I broke up with him. The lie had gone too far, the extent of the illusion was too great for my love to peer through. If I hadn’t put a stop to it, it would have put a stop to my very heartbeat. But I am left with a huge hole inside, a gaping wound that hasn’t started bleeding yet.
It’s like when you burn yourself. You pull away before the pain arrives. But you know it’s coming, and that nothing will prevent that. You try to get ready for it, but you never are.

Back in October, I broke up with him the first time. What still feels to me as forcefully, he got me to talk to him again, and twisted himself back into place. By my side. Instead of accepting his wrongs and letting me go through whatever steps necessary, he took what he thought was his rightful spot. Instead of honestly respecting my stance on our relationship, he dug up whatever feelings remained and used them against me. Not for my own good, not to make me happy, but for his own gain. And after that, he had me right where he wanted me. Where he could lie to me again, make himself look good, flatter his shattered ego with my naive adoration.

Now, that is over. I can forgive, and I can move on, but trust is a very slow thing to recover. It’s a fragile thing that has a mind of its own. Likely that is an important lesson for me; I’m too gullible, I cave too easily and I sometimes want things so badly that I actually forgo what my rational mind tells me. My emotions overrule my knowledge, and I shouldn’t let that happen.

The anger has subsided now, and it feels really nice. It’s the first time I’ve been able to relax in weeks. Today, all I have done is watch movies, and sleep. Sleep, sleep, more sleep. I had never realized how tired I was, until I was away from him, from the whole situation, and could start distancing myself from the whole mess that was our relationship. What a mess it was. A disgusting mix of his lies, my anger, his mistakes, my spite and horrific misunderstanding. When the basis of truth falls away, the whole couple becomes a farce. All the energy that should go into loving each other better, goes into saving the crumbling ruins of a dream.
I’ll have to be at home to fully grasp what it is I have lost, and what I have gained. My freedom, carelessness and integrity are gained, but the loss is still unclear. It’s difficult to see what he gave me, when what he took was so vast and fresh. Right now I still mostly feel robbed of some innocent part of me. But maybe that part really did need to be gone.

We’ll see how I feel tomorrow.

Can’t

April 20, 2013

Apparently it’s going to be one of those nights. I haven’t stopped crying since I let myself feel, after publishing the last post. It’s still the weirdest thing, realizing that feeling is something I need to actively let happen.

Well, scratch that. I sent my friend from last night an e-mail, explaining that what he said hurt me. It was a ridiculously long thing, but hopefully he’ll understand. Because last night he kept saying how I’m such a strong and confident young woman, and I’m not bad looking, and he couldn’t understand why I was with a man from the other side of the world who fucked things up pretty badly over here. In the e-mail I explained that the reason I was confident and blossoming, was because of that particular man on the other side of the world.

Yield

April 11, 2013

Game over. My partner and I had a very long, very thorough conversation for a few days about my irregular eating pattern and the purging. It has to stop. For it to stop, total abstinence is probably the only real way. A good, thorough clean-up in my head, my chemical balance and just.. life.

Yesterday I had a good start; I ate healthily, I had three meals and I snacked on vegetables and fruit. Today, I started with a banana toast, so I did have breakfast (a breakthrough, I’m telling you). All these things are important, they are small but they make a difference. With the purging and the irregularity, I’m sure I didn’t get the vitamins, minerals or electrolytes my body needs. I’m in the process of fixing that, and I hope to feel better for it.
Of course, I will still obsessively control my intake, but at least I won’t yield any twisted shit like skipping meals or eating only popcorn.
Also, my day started out with a wonderful diarrhea from the raw vegetables and the legitimate food I actually digested yesterday. Woops.

To be honest, I’m starting to get impatient to work the steps. I know that I should wait for this whole school year to be over, and that I should have nothing to distract me when I actually commit to the program. So I can’t do it yet. But I’m so ready.
My partner stays fairly well on the sidelines in this whole thing, but he does undisputedly support me and my choice to do this. It’s time to deal with things, by not using anything, not purging, not resorting to anything weird or sick. Just dealing with it, truly and without hiding.

I wonder how much I’ve suffered from my use, including my drinking, without even knowing it. I know now that while I was actively using amphetamines and cocaine I’d get bad blues, and after XTC every time I came down like a horrifying plane crash (I couldn’t see that until about a year clean!). But after that, all I did was drink, and I did drink every weekend. It always felt like, sure, I had a hangover, but after that one day it was passed. Now I wonder if that was ever true. If maybe I didn’t have a general sense of malaise, confusion or insecurity, enhanced by the drinking for several days after the spree.
I wonder how much of my use was an addition to my purging, which is older than drinking or snorting/smoking/ingesting drugs, because my perceived problems got bigger and the purging alone didn’t cut it.

Problems. What problems?

My parents are great. I write awful shit about them, but they’re supernice people, and they don’t deserve my bitterness. I hope to god that if I ever have a daughter, she won’t be as ungrateful as I am today. They do make mistakes, they’re only human, but the aggressive way I respond to that is not okay. It’s like I can’t forgive them for not being perfect, or something.
For some reason, unknown to me and completely confusing, I do remember growing up depressed, being sad, crying a lot, feeling unrecognized, feeling insignificant. Maybe I just overreacted to the world around me? Maybe my parents sheltered me too much and the clash was too big for my juvenile mind? I’ll never know.

That’s not what’s important. Everyone grows up with a given set of skills, and some aren’t adjusted to adult life and that’s when your race to catch up starts. Except instead of catching up, I pretty much fled. I had (and have) entirely and absolutely no fucking clue where to even begin. So many things scare me, and so many reflexes in me automatically cause me to avoid those things instead of facing them. Avoidance being a typical trait of depressed or struggling people, I’m fairly certain this is a taught reaction, and I hate it. It’s pure cowardice, and that’s one of the things I hate the most in this world.
Cowardice is the reason people die for no good reason, it’s the reason why people feel left in the cold and fall to pieces as they’re smashed to pieces against the Great Wall of Indifference. Cowardice should be eradicated in primary school through workshops and behavioral classes. Cowardice is the root of bullying even.

Another thing; I’m very sad because my friendship with my classmate feels like it’s over. I haven’t heard from her all week, but I’m too stubborn to call her. There’s this thing in me, telling me I don’t need her, I’m moving anyway. But that’s a very bad reason to not resolve a conflict. She hurt me where she could, though. I’m moving soon, yes, and she may feel like she’s the one being left behind. Or she may feel like it won’t affect her much, she never really said anything about that. Actually, I genuinely have no idea if she’d miss me or not. Sometimes it feels like she just hangs out with me because I’m always there and we have mutual friends, so it’s “easy”. I don’t know if she really feels anything.
Just because I decided to move, doesn’t mean I won’t miss my friends. It doesn’t mean that I don’t need support from my environment. When I went to dinner at her place last week, her boyfriend immediately said that he looked down on the country I’m moving to, that he thinks everyone there is stupid. That hurt. I tried talking to her about it, but she dismissed it as me being way too sensitive.
I understand that she’s loyal to her boyfriend, and she supports his perspective. But I feel lost in it, and I don’t want to be exposed to that again. I realize that I should talk about this with her, but I don’t know how and it feels like it’s too soon for it anyway. As much as I need a break from her, I think she needs one from me as well.

We’ll see how all this will clear up, I suppose.

Hypotension

April 6, 2013

The worst seems to have passed. I woke back up after 4 hours, but that’s usually the case after an upsetting event. When I got up to go to the bathroom, I could barely open my eyes. Puffy, stingy and red. My legs hurt and it was hard to put my weight on them. I could tell that if I got up too quickly, I would get orthostatic hypotension and fall.

When I got called for lunch, I didn’t go. Mom would see my face, still betraying what a night I had, and she would worry. A bit later I did go downstairs to find food, my father was posted up at the kitchen wall with his iPad. I didn’t talk to him, nor did I respond to his greeting. By now, I would think that he would have given up on greeting me altogether. But he has this obnoxious, tenacious urge to impose his own values onto others, so I get his greetings anyway while my skin crawls.
Unfortunately, I couldn’t really find any substantial food, so I took a small piece of bread and munched on it as I went back upstairs. I wasn’t very hungry, and I certainly did not have the energy to look for food more vigorously. The latter option would also mean remaining in the same room for a longer time with my father, which for the time being is an unbearable thing. As I walked passed him to get to the stairs, I could feel him look at me, observing me. I wanted to vomit, or plant a knife in his face.

My boyfriend is asleep, and I meekly tried to wake him up but he didn’t seem ready to leave his dreams behind. It’s lonely, but everyone needs rest.

Earlier, when I got up to feed my cat, I almost dropped to the floor. I ate 5 chocolate Easter eggs to pump up my blood pressure a bit. The sleep I got was insufficient, superficial and I almost feel more tired now than I did before trying to catch some. I’ve been awake since 9 AM, snoozing, watching documentaries on medieval Europe on YouTube.
There’s so much school work lined up for me, this happening enhances my stress level significantly. It’s like losing an entire day, and for what? Does anyone of us feel better now?
Wow, I’m pretty bitter.
As much as yesterday I felt wronged, hurt for the sake of it and used, those feelings will get me nowhere. There was so much reproach that I accepted as legitimate, and suddenly it all got brushed aside as just being “an asshole rant”. If you want to confuse me, that’s the way to go; get me to feel like I made a mistake, and then proceed to tell me that I didn’t do anything wrong. More than angry, I’m confused. So, so confused.

Codependency, by definition, means making the relationship more important to you than you are to yourself. It’s kind of a weird phrase, and it doesn’t sound like it means a one-sided relationship. But that’s what it is. It means you’re trying to make the relationship work with someone else who’s not.” – Tina Tessina (source)

Except that last part is incorrect. My boyfriend is trying to make this work. And he’s fighting as hard as I am for it. In fact, he’s been working very, very hard to make enough money for us to be comfortable in the future when we live together. I’m a student, so I haven’t earned a penny in all of this.
The characteristics of codependent partners never struck me as accurate before either (source). But now I have to revisit that, as heavy as that makes my heart feel.

  • An exaggerated sense of responsibility for the actions of others

I barely feel responsible enough for my own. Though maybe that confirms the problem. Actually, I can see that. Feeling like I need to be in charge because people are counting on me, when I could just as easily step aside and not do that.

  • A tendency to confuse love and pity, with the tendency to “love” people they can pity and rescue

Well. When we first met, he was in pretty bad shape. But I was disappointed that he was, not elated like ‘ohhh, poor thing, I’m going to *save* you’. What is pity? I feel sorry for some of the things he’s had to go through, yes. But he survived them, and I admire him for that. I’m not even sure if I have the ability to feel pity, for anyone. Again; maybe that confirms the problem. Maybe it’s all I can feel.

  • A tendency to do more than their share, all of the time

Until I burn the fuck out, yeah. It’s easy to forget your own limitations, when your goal is to meet the other person’s needs.

  • A tendency to become hurt when people don’t recognize their efforts

That’s true, it’s in my nature. But I have to be fair; I’ve come the longest way on that. I’ve gotten a lot better about this, and I can let go of a lot of things with ease now. The world will keep turning, whether I feel patted on the back or not. And the world just wants me to contribute, like everyone else. You don’t get patted on the back for functioning in society, even if for me it’s very challenging. Maybe for others it’s just as challenging, but they never had this need to be applauded.

  • An unhealthy dependence on relationships. The co-dependent will do anything to hold on to a relationship; to avoid the feeling of abandonment

Well. Shit.

  • An extreme need for approval and recognition

I don’t know? Maybe?

  • A sense of guilt when asserting themselves

Yes.

  • A compelling need to control others

No. Just no.

  • Lack of trust in self and/or others

Unfortunately this one might be accurate.

  • Fear of being abandoned or alone

Yes.

  • Difficulty identifying feelings

I think this is one of my stronger points. Communicating and expressing what I feel is something I’m very, very good at. I’m thoroughly trained, thanks to all the therapy I’ve undergone. On the other hand, I struggle with a fuckload of weird quirks and habits that I need to deal with every day life. I also fret a lot, which is an escape mechanism to not calmly experience the emotions concerning the subject. So maybe I only apparently express my feelings, whereas deep down inside there are demons who are never grazed. I wouldn’t know, would I?

  • Rigidity/difficulty adjusting to change

Define change. When I go to a new place for an internship, I’m a nervous wreck. But isn’t that normal? I have surges of absolute necessity to rearrange my room, and out of nowhere I dig up mounds of energy from within, to execute the idea I have in my head. Soon I’m moving to the other side of the world, and it doesn’t intimidate me much.
I should also mention that I’m pretty naive and impulsive, and I may not fully grasp the actual change I’m about to undergo.

  • Problems with intimacy/boundaries

My boundaries are those of whoever I’m with. That’s what that means, isn’t it?

  • Chronic anger

Not impossible, but again; how would I know?

  • Lying/dishonesty

No.

  • Poor communications

No.

  • Difficulty making decisions

Yes, I think so. But sometimes not. If I have to choose between two jeans, I’ll have a harder time than deciding what car to buy. That can happen in a flash. Actually, no, I’m good about making decisions. But my boyfriend tends to be really pissed off when I change my mind about something, so lately I’ve been slower to come to them.

I’m crushed to realize that I am a codependent partner, making life harder for my partner. I’m mostly crushed to have been so self righteous and self absorbed, almost narcissistic, that I could never see it before. That wasn’t me, no, I was the perfect girlfriend.
And now I have to start the long ass process of attempting to forgive myself, which will take for fucking ever.

Ounce

February 11, 2013

It’s all ending, soon. The new life might actually be incredibly shitty. It’s really pretty scary, when you think of it -but I haven’t much, because it’s scary.
A few months from now, I’m going to receive a nice little piece of paper that is my degree, and I’m going to have to grab every ounce of courage I have, and find a job. In a country I’ve never lived in, in a therapeutic setting I probably don’t know or entirely grasp. What if I do it all wrong, you know? What if everything they taught me here, is not at all what I’m supposed to be doing over there.

But.
I’ll worry about that when I’m there.

Will I miss home? Will I even think back on it? Will it feel like I left something, or will it feel like new found freedom? It’s hard to tell. Many, many aspects will be shaken off, not left behind. But others, that I may not even notice now, I might actually end up missing.
Knowing people when I come into a bar; recognizing their faces, knowing who they usually go out with. Knowing their parents, knowing what school they went to. Having that broad background of familiar education, life story and future. Although obviously now my future thoroughly digresses.
Will they visit? They say they mean to, but will they?

Should it matter? Or should I turn my head and not look back. What is the most efficient way to start over somewhere else, without feeling the sorrow of leaving a whole life behind? I have no idea.
But this is a dream. A lifelong dream. It’s happening.

My posts are getting shorter.

Faces

February 9, 2013

The weirdest thing is working with addicts, and going out on Friday with my own friends thinking “I need a break from all this druggie talk”, only to end up in exactly the same environment. This was the first time, after having been clean for over 2 years (2 years and 1 month, to be exact), that I legitimately wanted to use. I was mostly a smoker, and the high of smoking cocaine is like nothing you can imagine from a snort. It’s probably midway in between snorting and shooting.

A friend was in the process of ordering a few grams from his dealer when I arrived at the bar and he had some stuff in the car too. Two other friends had also paid for it and they all went to the car to lay out some lines. The temptation to go with them was incredible. It came out of nowhere and washed over me like a tsunami. I kept telling myself “I’ll just go with them to catch some of that atmosphere, just for the fuck of it, for old times’ sake”. But I knew I wouldn’t resist it, not this time. So I stayed in the bar, drinking my need away.

Later everyone wanted to go to a friends’ place, because obviously there would be more there. I came in to a small, crappy apartment with a couch dominating the room. Facing a gigantic tv, a laptop playing ridiculous music off Youtube and just… that coffee table. It hit me for the first time, that I used to get excited over this. I used to feel at home here, like it was all going somewhere. This time, I just felt kind of detached from most of them. Talking about strictly nothing at all, being shitfaced and high on mediocre coke, feeling like something was happening that was bringing them closer to whatever it is they want. Which is most likely just ‘more cocaine’.
The coffee table was a mish mash of CD boxes, of which the plastic was completely eaten and damaged from lines of very impure drugs being cut on there, rolled up bills, library cards with white, blurry sides and ashtrays. There were maybe 10 people in that room, but at least 20 ashtrays.

I left about half an hour later. They all knew my name, but I didn’t feel like I was with friends at all. They were asking about my relationship, my studies, my plans, but it had more to do with their own self esteem and needing some information to sculpt a standard out of for themselves, than with any kind of actual involvement.
I returned to the bar and sat back down with a closer friend. She’d done some drugs, but that’s inevitable, and she didn’t need more. For my people, that’s meaningful enough. By 1 AM I was home, which is ridiculously early for my doing.

The difficulty is diagnosing whether this was a bad day, or if my judgment has fast matured and I now see the sickness and the immoral character of all of it, that I could never see before because I was too close to it. None of this appeals to me anymore, and even though a good coke joint would have made me deliciously high as fuck, the way these people looked, talked or even behaved in general didn’t call out to me at all. Maybe it’s because these are also speed users, who are generally significantly less refined than strictly-cocaine-users.
This is just the cold truth. People who specialize in lovingly, dedicatedly cleaning their cocaine in a beautiful, warm, dimly lit living room and then slowly, respectfully smoke that shit are nothing like the dirty, shitty, poor, socially rejected speed users I walked in on last night. They should be my friends, and some of them I still feel close-ish to, but the group that existed last night was definitely not a club I wanted to have anything to do with. I’m both disappointed and confused.

The urge to buy my own stuff, clean it on my own time and with my own technique and then smoke it is very, very hard to suppress. If only to comfort myself that I was never that shitty. That it doesn’t have to be like that. That I don’t have to be making weird faces, saying ridiculous things or being an asshole to other people.

I’m actually angry at them, for being so disrespectful with my drug of choice, that I can never, ever use again. And they can, they got nothing. They can do whatever the fuck they want. And they choose to fuck it up, by spending money on bad stuff because they’re that desperate, by snorting it mixed with speed (that’s like putting ketchup on oysters) and by boozing over it, not even getting any of the true cocaine effect, however little it might be given the low quality of what they bought.

Fuck this.

Circular

February 2, 2013

The plan was to get a maine coon. They are those cats the size of a dog. Their paws are like a toddler’s hand. Their purr sounds like a motorcycle. But I’m poor, so I got a stray cat.

I don’t know how to handle him. Like I mentioned, there is reason to worry about his health, but I don’t know how to handle masculine panic. Because it’s nothing like us women. When I freak out I eat ice cream by the gallon, purge and go shopping for things I don’t need (think baby clothes and sports gear of a sport I don’t exercise). Another thing is that I whine and complain about it all day long, it would be very hard not to pick up on my troubles.
He’s not like that. He prefers talking about anything else. I try to follow his lead on it, whatever helps him is fine by me. I’m not terribly worried either, because nothing’s definitive and it would be pointless to waste my energy on that. Energy I might very well need, once an actual diagnosis comes out. And it could be bad news, realistically.

We’re in the process of watching his favorite movie, which started out as a fun way to pass the time. As the end draws near, I’m getting the impression his thoughts have caught up on him. I feel a bit powerless, but also know it’s not my load. He’s gotten quiet and probably needs some time to himself now.
I’ve been very determined to not force anything, to not steer the conversations in any direction he didn’t want and all that. I’ve even been biting my tongue about meetings, his neighborhood, his days. Leaving him alone and letting him determine the entire weight of the conversations has been my main goal, and it seems to have worked. So long as he has me to be safe with, I think he’ll be okay. It makes me proud of myself that I managed to keep that up.

But the thing is, I’m not sure where to go from there. What do I do tomorrow? What do I do the next time he wants to have a conversation or wants me to talk to him while he falls asleep? ‘Cause I’m bad at a lot of those things, and am unsure how to fix it. It’s making me feel like my improvement with regards to handling him, is a requirement for his overall happiness. I shouldn’t feel that way and maybe I’ve been too accommodating. These last months have basically consisted of me looking inside myself, finding mistakes and working on adjusting them. For his sake, not mine. I might reap some advantage from some of the adjustments, indirectly, but my main motivation was to be a better girlfriend. And I’m not sure that’s a good attitude at all. I’m starting to think I’m piling guilt on his shoulders because he’s aware of that. That’s a remarkable example of circular reasoning.

I’m afraid that if I put my foot down on some things, or remain “me” with my flaws too much, he’ll eventually go away, or he’ll drink himself to death. As much as I tell myself nothing I do can influence his choices about drinking, my heart isn’t in it.
Not that I could ever really eradicate all my flaws to a point where there’d never be anything wrong anymore, but you always try, right?

Some things about him make me angry, or sad. But I haven’t been talking about them, I think I’ve been bottling it up. It was unconsciously though, I didn’t mean to. It just… happened. I told him so many times already, after a while you just don’t want to be the nagging one, you know? He knows what’s important to me by now, reminding him over and over that those needs aren’t being met in some areas just doesn’t seem productive anymore.
Especially now, he’s already pretty beaten up.

I actually feel bad that I started writing this, I wasn’t aware of these thoughts before I did. And now they’re laid out in front of me and I have to face them. And do something mature and constructive with them, too. Why can’t I just be stable and strong. I wish I knew what to do. But I also know that time brings me wisdom and a little calm, and that soon I’ll have a lot of things to worry about that will distract me from all this. Monday I start a new internship, and hopefully that will push all this into a better, more balanced perspective.