Category Archives: Fears

Mask

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I live my life behind a mask. My mask is happy.  My mask is confident.  I’m good at wearing this.  Despite how I feel inside, I don’t reveal my honest feelings and fears.

I don’t really let people see the “true me”.  Hell, sometimes I don’t even know what the “true me” is.  I’ve hidden behind a mask for so long that maybe that is the “true me”.

There’s an episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation where a character has a bunch of laws to live by.  Her law number one was “You always have to rely on yourself”.  I totally agree with that.  But my law zero is “Trust no one”.  If you can’t trust, it’s hard to show your “true self”.  It’s hard to take off that mask.

I’m slowly learning to trust Dr. D and Dr. W.  It’s been a rough couple of weeks for me.  Last week, I tried to cancel my appointment with Dr. D and quit therapy all together.  I made a deal to come that one time.  Ordinarily, I would have hidden how bad things were and just tiptoed around the issues.  But I didn’t.  I sat there and talked through the flashbacks.  Making myself that vulnerable was extremely scary.  And although nothing bad happened, I still want to put that mask on.

Maybe this is a turning point for me.  Maybe it’s okay to drop the mask and let safe people see what’s underneath.

Showers and Stuff

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One of my biggest challenges has been taking showers.  There were countless times where my father fondled me while washing my hair.  I came to hate showers and associated them with pain and anxiety.  And the fear and anxiety led to what I call the 3 minute shower.  In and out just as fast as you can.

I’ve been struggling with shower issues for years.  I finally buckled down and got my fears under control.  It took a lot of time.  I started by just standing in the shower, fully clothed, for increasing amounts of time.  Once I felt comfortable there, I moved to standing in the showers with no clothes on.  That was really hard.  But with time, I was able to be in the shower for increasing amounts of time.

Then it came time for actual showers.  This brought back the panic full force.  I just had to power through it.  Now, I was doing all this in the daylight.  Nighttime was nearly impossible.  So once I finally got comfortable with showers longer than three minutes I started back at the beginning, but after dark.

It feels like the entire process took f0rever.  Now it’s to the point where there isn’t any anxiety surrounding the shower.

Creating a Dialogue With Your Inner Young Child

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Creating a Dialogue With Your Inner Young Child

From: Cathryn L. Taylor M.A. The Inner Child Workbook

 

1. What is her favorite food?

Fried chicken.  But only her grandmother’s chicken.

2. What is the activity she would most like to do?

Read.  She could read all day and all night.

3. Has she done this before? Is so , what happened? If not, ask why.

She reads all the time.  Her favorite book is still Green Eggs and Ham.  But now she can read it on her own.

4. Ask her to tell you about her fear of being blamed and criticized or of doing or saying something wrong.

She is always afraid of doing something wrong.  She’s terrified she’ll bring home a bad mark on a school paper even though she’s only in Kindergarten.  She’s terrified that she’ll be taken to the orphanage for real this time.  She’s afraid of messing up her dances.  She doesn’t want to disappoint Miss R.

5. Does she feel overly responsible? Why?

Always.  B was just born.  She’s supposed to take care of him when mom is drunk.

6. What does she need most from you?

She needs me to understand that she wasn’t a bad kid.  She was a good kid in a bad situation.

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I’m exhausted now.  I’ll try to finish the remaining questions in the near future.

 

 

 

A Very Long Day

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I’m so mentally, emotionally and physically exhausted.  I started the day with the psychiatrist.  Initial sessions are always long.  Having to go through my history is beyond demanding.  Fighting back tears (and failing miserably) left me drained after the first 30 minutes.  Then she drops the little bomb shell that she thinks I’m psychotics.  I basically told her I respectfully disagree.  Hearing the voice of one of my abusers is more likely a PTSD symptom (PDF) rather than a psychosis symptom.  She wanted to put me on one of the newer antipsychotics.  I told her no.  I absolutely and positively wouldn’t go down that route again.  I gained so much weight on them and they sent my cholesterol sky high.  I don’t need that crap again.  She didn’t seem pleased with my refusal, but it’s my body.  Honestly, it’s not causing me that much distress that I think it needs to be medicated.  I’m quite aware the voice isn’t real and what the origin of it is.  I’m not putting those drugs in my body unless I’m going crazy.  I think they’re overused for things like bipolar, PTSD, ADHD (!) and Autism (!!!).  So, in the end, she upped one of my meds and put me back on Cymbalta for the depression and chronic pain.  Once I’m doing somewhat better, she wants me to get back into therapy.  I’m not against that.  I just need to find someone the energy to find someone.

Then it was to the hospital side to register for blood work and an EKG.  I’m still not 100% certain why she feels she needs the EKG, but whatever.  The nice man filling in from another department was trying to register me into the ER, which is why he couldn’t find the doctors name.  Once that was fixed, I got to the lab where the paperwork was screwed up because my age ended up getting entered as 103.  I don’t even know how that happened.  I got stabbed in the hand, leaving me with a nice little lump and a big old bruise.

Then the fun really began.  Gynecologist time.  I kid you not…  when the nurse took my BP, I almost had a stroke right there given how high it was (190/130) after it being normal (120/80) earlier in the day.  She was pretty alarmed until I told her I was basically sitting there having a panic attack.  The doctor was really nice.  She tried to be as gentle as she could.  It isn’t that easy since my body is a bit weird and I was, well, freaking out.  At least I don’t have to go back for a year, and then only for a quick check, not the full thing.

I’m about to take my meds and go to bed.  I’ve finally gotten myself mostly calmed down.  But I’m exhausted.

I’m a Coward

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I have a appointment with a GYN on Friday because my shitty ass PCP won’t prescribe birth control.  Really?  Why the hell did you go into primary care.  Prescribing BC sort of falls into primary care these days since you don’t need to see a GYN if you’re not sexually active (or at least not more than once every three years).  I tried to explain my history to him, but he didn’t give a rats ass.  He doesn’t do birth control.  He conveniently doesn’t do psych meds or pain meds either, though these are a bit more understandable.  I have a psychiatrist appointment for Friday and I hate those.  I hate going into my past.  But that’ll be a walk in the park compared to seeing the GYN.  Luckily this person came highly recommended by the referral line.

I also know I need to get back into therapy.  But I’m too scared to even call and make an appointment.  There’s a place in town that used to serve abuse survivors.  It’s been folded into another agency but from their website it seems like maybe they still specialize in survivors.  Nothings going to change, but I’m such a chicken that even thinking about calling them is freaking me out.  I had a good experience with them before.  I don’t know what’s up with me.

Right now, I’m so anxious, I’m nauseated.  I don’t want to eat.  I haven’t eaten all day, which is probably why my stomach is hating me.  I tend to get really nauseous when my blood sugar falls.  I’m pretty sure that’s what’s going on now.  It’s a crappy spiral.  My stomach isn’t happy so I don’t eat which screws with my blood sugar which makes me more nauseous.   We’ve got some nice French bread, maybe I’ll try to eat a piece of that and see if it doesn’t settle my stomach.

Long story short, I’m a coward.

Scared

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I’m scared that these side effects from which ever drug in the cocktail is doing it is pushing me toward an eating disorder.  Nothing tastes right.  Not looks or smells appetizing.   I ate a bowl of rice yesterday for lunch.  That was it.  Somewhere around 500 calories.  And I taught 5 classes.  I came home and took my meds (damn will phenobarbital knock the hell out of you), watched TV and went to bed.

I got up this morning.  Took the meds.  Went to see Dr. P who happens to have a nifty new toy.  It let’s you visualize (a very small part) of the vascular system.  It’s kind like shining a flash light through your hand (am I the only kid that thought it was cool it came out red?)  The use the tip of your index finger, right above the nail bed.  It was cool.  And guess what.  As usual it was fucked up.  There isn’t one body system that’s working right.  Well, I guess my skin is okay.  I’ll probably wake up covered in pimples tomorrow with my luck.  So looking at a bunch of pictures, he says it’s looking like a combination of chronic fatigue (duh, I’d bet anything CFS and FM are related), drug side effects (how ironic considering how many drugs I’m on), and a connective tissue disease (which one, who knows).  I don’t know exactly what test the rheumy ran, but he’s saying Fibro.

So I guess I’m going to go back to Dr. P and see if I can get printouts of the normal and mine.  Even I could see how abnormal it looked.  Instead of nice light pink, straight loops, I had dark red squiggle loops.  I also had more than normal.  That I can take to rheumy.  I know Dr. P is going to call him.

So I’m scared of that.  I’ve never been scared to google stuff before, but I don’t want to know what else might be wrong.  I don’t know if I should get a referral to a hematologist or what.  I’ve always wanted to be informed.  No matter how scary (don’t google fasciectomy or whatever that thing was that I thought they were going to have to do on my leg) I wanted to know.  Part curiosity.  Part control issues.

Back to my original thing.  Yesterday rice.  Today, nothing all day.  The rice was at noon yesterday.  I came home at 10 after 4 classes (and breaks, imagine that) and ate an egg.  Getting that egg into me was the hardest thing.   It’s not a classic eating disorder as such.  But there’s something wrong with me and food.  It left a bitter taste in my mouth.

My stomach says feed me (grumble grumble) but my brain and my nose and my mouth just scream no.

How do I move past this?  I used to love to cook and eat.  Part of this is the lack of  kitchen.  I have no counter space and a toaster oven.  I do most of my cooking in a crock pot.

It’s sad, but I have to blame part of this on the fibro.  There were weekends where I couldn’t get out of bed to go to the store if I wanted.  I have a short vacation.  I plan on spending tomorrow resting.  Trying to let my body heal itself.  At least a little bit.  If I can I’ll go to the doctors.  If not.  Then I’ll do what my body  tells me what I need.

It’s past my bed time, but I needed to get this out.  It’s not as scary.  But the unknown is crazy for me.  It’s a shame the science thing didn’t work out for me.  But in the end, all there is is the unknown.

 

Understanding Triggers

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I think I finally understand why the trigger point injections are so triggering for me.  First of all, they are painful.  Like cry out and bring tears to your eyes painful.  Even after switching to a finer needle, they’re almost unbearable.  And let me tell you, lidocane burns.  So that’s that little fact too.

Having the doctor behind me is somewhat triggering.  I can’t see what’s going on.  Plus he’s poking around in already painful areas trying to determine where to do the injection.  That brings back my touch = pain association.  The PT having to poke at my back and neck to figure out where to put the TENS cups reinforces that touch = pain thing too.

I think the biggest thing about the injections is that I can’t predict when he’s going to stick the needle in.  I realize for a normal person that might not be a problem.  For me, it all goes back to the unpredictability of my father and his games and the pain.  I think I’m going to ask Dr. K to tell me when he’s going to stick the needle in.  It’s a simple request (I hope).

I am worried about one thing.  As the pain in my neck and shoulders gets better, I can feel the pain in my lower back ramping up.  It’s up to about a 3.  It feels nothing like the pain I had with the herniated disks.  It’s the same sort of pain in my upper body.  And it’s right where fibro trigger points are.  I don’t think I could handle PT or injections in that reason.  Lying on my stomach for any sort of procedure is difficult for me and I had to do that for the TENS on my back.  But to have someone poking around down there.  Ugh.  No please no.  I know I shouldn’t ignore it.  I’m going to try some gentle stretching and hopefully I can prevent a full flare up down there.

Life

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At the moment, I’m hating life.  My wrist sucks.  The rest of my body sucks.  Looks like I might be in for a visit to a hematologist as the bruise on my hand/wrist keeps spreading.  Part of it is obviously healing and part of it (the part closest to the failed IV site) looks like a fresh bruise.  I fell down a step today and have a bruise starting where my wrist splint jammed into my arm.  I landed right on my bad wrist, so it’s a good thing the splint was on.  Nothing seems broken, just more pain than usual.

I’ve spent the weekend crying off and on.  Yesterday during PT, I was crying more out of frustration than anything else.  Not the sobbing type of crying, but the silent tears running down the face crying.

I overdid it yesterday and basically spent today in bed.  I didn’t even do anything taxing.  Since losing about 50 pounds, I’ve noticed that I don’t get fatigued by simply walking up a flight of steps.  It was warm yesterday, but not horribly so.  Not really humid.  I walked for about 20 minutes outside (a friend and I went from a coffee shop to a new warehouse type store).  The whole time I was in the store, the sweat was pouring off of me.  Even though the store was cool, I couldn’t stop sweating.  I ended up dizzy and light headed.  Drinking water didn’t help.  When I got home, I took my temperature and it was at 102.  Normal for me is near 97.  I took a cool shower and kept drinking water and that seemed to help.  This is totally new for me.  It might be from the tricyclic antidepressant I’m on and it might be from my thyroid medication (or even my thyroid, looks like it’s time to get TSH/T3/T4 checked again).   Tomorrow is doctor day I guess.  Gotta see Dr. P (the psychiatrist), Dr. K (the orthopedist) + PT and Dr. Whatever his name is (the internist who is pretty useless).

I’m sorry to bitch about my health so much.  I feel like I’m falling apart.  Everything.  The PTSD stuff and even some of the borderline stuff has been rearing its ugly head.  I’m no spring chicken anymore.  But I’m not an old lady… though I feel like it.

*sigh*