Then, there’s the added pressureI keep saying this, and the more often I say it, it feels like I’m minimizing what is going on, but it often feels like the things that I take on are always looked at to see if they’ll benefit others.
I’ve spent the last haze of days talking about various things with various friends, but the overriding sets of conversations have been in three categories. One, insulting, and asking why I’m doing (x). They’re being removed from my life.
The second, which is also the least of the interactions I’ve had, have been encouraging.
And the third?… It seems to come up more and more, but I’ve spent the last six months or so telling people ‘no’. No to coming with me when I go to projects. No to visiting with us for now. No to introducing people to other people.
The power of ‘and’I’ve been looking at the fact that I keep saying that ‘they don’t mean to do this.’. I’m telling them no, they’re arguing, they don’t mean it vs, I’m telling them no, they’re arguing, they don’t mean it and it hurts me.
The ‘and it hurts me’ is the bit that really gets me though. I’m not sure how to get passed or around that, but I’m thinking about that.
And isn’t any more of an excuse than ‘but’. It feels like it, though it’s more about making things sit right with me. Because honestly? My life is about how I survive it. If I need and, but, however, and other mitigations and codicils to forgive people because they don’t see things my way (because maybe, just maybe, I’m wrong). Regardless, sometimes I find it hard.
It’s not all bad. The power of and got me to various projects that I’m really loving and starting a new blog, and re-evaluating a lot of the time I’m spending with myself. It does feel very much like advance and retreat though. Two steps forward, four back. And honestly? That’s therapy, I guess?
And…and LudosportThe power of and got me to continue Ludosport. I’m reactive, on edge and tired and I’m learning a new set of skills. I’m exhausted every night we train, and I’m losing weight. There’s a few things I can’t really get my head around, like the fact that I’m having nightmares (triggers, aren’t they … just wonderful), and that’s interfering with my sleep. I don’t blame any of the people training me – in fact, as long as I keep telling myself ‘and it’s ok’, I’ll hopefully learn to sit with the things triggering me.
Wanna see my lightsaber? ?Not a euphemism ? And see me?
All shared below ?
Judgement – my own worst enemySelf-judgement that is. And I think that’s true of all of us. We’re ALL our own worst enemies when it comes to deciding if we’re ‘doing what we’re made to do’. Which in itself is a loaded sentence. I really hate the whole “we’re human beings, not human doings” concept. It distils and negates a lot of the struggle we all have with the needs and responsibilities, the wants and the necessities we all carry and balance. I’m a human being. I am.
What I am right now?
A little bit stressed, a lot melancholy. Because I’m judging myself against a list of things that I just can’t expect to meet.
What I can say though is that I’ve achieved a lot that isn’t ‘obvious’. I was discharged from therapy, and told I’d successfully completed the work they wanted me to which is…awesome. I went into recovery care with the local unit over seven years ago. I moved two years ago, this week, to the unit the county over. I’ve put a commendation about Dr C. and my nurse, M, with my MP, I feel that strongly about their care. The whole NHS should be praised, for the last few years, of course, but the team that cared for me over the last few years especially, since just after my 40th birthday, are people that went above and beyond and made a real change to my life.
The grain silo, Being Human and more…I’ve talked about these essays but never finished them. Some are actually in ‘And Miles to go before I sleep…’ and expanded upon. So, along with the retrospective coming for the rest of this week, and looking forward over the weekend (the blog is going to be busy), but I’ll be releasing the essays ‘The Grain silo’ and ‘Being Human’, along with the pre-order link for ‘And Miles to go before I sleep…’ over this week. I’ll maybe even get to talk about the major business project we’re launching. On Saturday or Sunday, I’ll release our sort of calendar, and aspirations we have. And they are aspirations. Not deadlines. Not must do’s. The pre-orders are fixed, but.. other than that, we’ll adapt. And the we in this case is my beloved, my family, my friends and I. Being Human isn’t to be alone. And I’m not.
Failure – a loaded word
The last few weeks have been really…weird for me. I *started* making strides on becoming happier, healthier and more confident in my skin by trying to go for a walk outside and enjoying myself. I say started – last Friday, due to the completely thoughtless actions of a company that I’ll still say ‘remains nameless’ but is a social media scheduling program, who increased my bills by an eyewatering 1151% a month, this week has been a week of disruption, sadness, and annoyance.
And it didn’t help that I was fixing a stupid video problem that very few people actually see (that’ll go on my other blog, probably this weekend. What I’m hearing myself say right ow is I have a lot of blogs to work on. It’s not a happy thought, if I’m honest), but is key to a few clients who work on those platforms. And of course, I worked my ass off to fix it. But still…it’s been a rough week, and that’s meant…no walks.
I’ve still not gotten back to a place where the house is neat and tidy and everything has a place. I don’t think I ever will. I keep trying to put my work back together, and every little thing that knocks me off track is so significant. So hard.
When the language is all about judgement, how do you not judge?I’m discharged from the team in question on Tuesday (hooray, I’m better…hang on), but the very last psych I worked with before I wrote this post, who I refer to as Dr C, finally said, a few Januarys ago, that he believed that everyone was a little bit on ‘the spectrum’, and in my case, I was VERY language focussed. To the point that I’ll get upset with language usage because people don’t use words precisely. It’s a form of control of course, but my psych says that he’d finally come to a conclusion that it wasn’t a power play. He thought I wasn’t/don’t do it to push people, to control them, but instead, to understand my environment. My ‘my brain won’t let this go’ is constantly stimulated. It’s language. In all it’s forms, really. What I do know though, about all of this, is that I’ve got a bias in how I perceive language. My language ‘understanding’ has an undertone of judgementalness. It’s how my brain works, and isn’t – really – about anything other than… I guess, when you grow up as badly bullied as I was, you need to find a reason for that. When you’re young, it’s most common to blame yourself. We think, unpicking everything, that my outlook is very much coloured by wanting to belong and not managing it because…children are children. I can’t blame the kids I grew up with (I can’t – many of them are in worse places than I ever ended up), and my family did their best. I just wasn’t… I’ll be blunt I guess. I grew up in an era where bullying was still viewed as character forming. Half of my teachers didn’t know what to do with me, and I must have been difficult for my family. I was sensitive, sad, often emotionally difficult, I guess. I began to prefer my own worlds to the ones outside. I didn’t interact well. If it happened now, as in, if I was a child/teen now, I suspect I’d have been put into a specialist education program, and I may – or may not – have turned out the way I am. And there I go again, judging myself. So. This week has been not optimal. Not even minimal. It’s been rough and hard and tiring.
But… I’m learning a lot of things. Always growing. So. I own this one. I didn’t do any exercise this week. I have good reason for it, I was disrupted, and upset and had a really ‘poor’ week. But, I’ve been able to think, plan, consider, when I’ve not been too preoccupied with reclaiming money that shouldn’t have been removed from my account. It’s been a frustrating week, but I DID get those video fixes sorted, I am working through stuff with clients to get on with. The week, on the surface, looks like a failure. But really? It’s just been a week that hasn’t worked out. If, at first, you don’t succeed. Try. Try again.
Adulting is overratedI don’t mean by this that I don’t think I should have zero responsiblities. I’m just really tired of not getting ‘a win’ in the things that I do, not really. All of my planned treats, no matter how small, have either fallen through, or I’ve had to ask my partner to pay for them after all – which makes me feel bad. He doesn’t mind as much, but it’s a bit hard to talk to my kids about being adult and responsible then running to my other half and crying because life is hard.
And lately, I’ve been crying a lot.
I try not to focus on bullying, because it’s not a positive thing to think about and it gives them power, but often, I’m finding a lot of people when they are challenged on what they say, suddenly try turning the tables and creating the idea that they’re a victim. That you’re in the wrong.
Compound that by the fact that often, this is over hosting bills or whatnot, and you can see how it hurts me to have people treat me this way.
Reality…Realistically, my company actually works, just about right now. I’ve got some work to do over the end of my Kaiatus to launch a few websites, but, we’re actually stable. Wire thin margins, but stable, so when someone starts complaining about their hosting bill, there is a bit of me that doesn’t want to engage. Another bit of me that knows I have to, because if I don’t, they’ll not pay. And a huge bit of me that’s wary, because I’ve been attacked recently for not considering giving away services free for the pandemic. I only really manage what I do because I’ve kept beta accounts with places that aren’t as great as they could be and finding ways to fix the shortfall, or doing the stuff that I need manually. But realistically, I’ve been out of spoons and upset for about a week now.
The thing is…I can’t really pillow fort. Next week sees the start of my graded exposure to the outside world. In laymans terms, that means for the first time in five years, I’ll be leaving my house and going for a walk…and trying not to throw up when I do. It’ll either be brilliant, or I’ll make it brillaint, but today was a day where I could have just done with hiding away and not needing to deal with the world. If I manage it though, Prime Day reward will be nice. I never get anything extravegant, but….treating myself to some new books for Uni or some additional research tools would be nice (cybersec isn’t a ‘cheap’ study area, Forensic linguistics even less, and honestly? I’m lucky. I’ve got access to stuff through my partner and friends). If not there, Humble Bundle always has cool books on AI.
See…I can adultWhen I start thinking like this, often, my friends point out that I pull myself out of it. I’m #blessed to get to do what I do. And, yes, I am. It doesn’t change though when nothing is going right and no one wants to do as they’re supposed to, and you need the books before the end of the month, or you’re looking forward to a tiny treat that keeps getting postponed, that you feel this way. It’s still not the ‘correct’ way to think, but….rewards are sometimes good. When applied sensibly. I can’t do it any other way. And for those of you pointing out ‘I can ask…’ I can. You’re right. Lucky me again, but….why should my partner bail me out when I’ve planned and it should work? Like I said, I don’t like adulting. At all. 42 years old and I wish I didn’t need to. I’m just so tired of everything being uphill. And don’t ask me about books. Still waiting for my 100 ISBNs…
But… ‘new normal’ and ‘freedom day’…In the UK, they’re referring to something that
My terrible mental health got worse too because I didn’t mesh with my care team and a few things were missed. By the time the pandemic was in full flow, it had kinda…snuck past me because I was dealing with my son’s kidney issues, and though he’d been cleared the morning we went into lockdown, there was something…almost unreal about what happened for those first weeks.
Privileged, I knowWe weren’t badly affected by the furlough, though my own buisness didn’t qualify for any help, most of my time was actually spent supporting my young adult children through the various challenges that the pandemic was raising for their mental health, mine and everything else.
We are a year on now, and though a lot has happened, I actually think that I’ve come out of this a lot less ‘scathed’ than others, I’m not sure that any of us will know normal again.
And I don’t really know how to explain it. What I do know is that life – in all its forms are fragile and it’s hard to talk about it in terms that we all relate to because I can’t think of anything that is remotely like this, not in my experience. Whatever the ‘new normal’ is, I hope our PM understands that his cliched behaviour and almost childish soundbites aren’t helping. Sound and fury, signifying nothing.
Or that I just can’t do it any more, it makes me feel sick to my stomach.
Imposter syndrome at the start…What was once something I used to refer to as a cross between imposter syndrome and writer’s block as evolved in some ways into a similar feeling I get when trying to leave the house. I’m perfectly capable of doing the things I plan, but there’s a lack of… willpower to stay on track instead of just stare off into space. It doesn’t hurt – my heart, the lump in my throat, my head, if I just check out, you know? But, I’m letting so many people down now and I just can’t keep doing it, so, I’m slowly pulling myself back together, or trying to. It’s not an easy path to slog up and down, if I’m honest.
Reorganising starts…where it startsOne thing I’ve discovered is mindset is everything with me. If I’m feeling positive, I manage so much better. But, getting myself motivated is one of those difficult things that I’ve found tiring, exhausting, annoying, hard.
I don’t think this is something unique to people with mental health challenges though. I think we’re all kinda feeling this way, and, coupled with imposter syndrome is probably one of those things that is difficult and tiring at the best of times, but right now? It feels insurmountable. But, I’ll get there, slowly but surely.
We’ll be doing a tonne of stuff to get me organised – starting with some cleaning in our room. From there, I’ll be arranging my dining room and creating a new office space. Woo?
I need to build up enthusiasm.
Societal versus compassionI guess this is something that clicked recently, along with some of the concepts I’ve finally worked out about toxic negativity in the people I’m around, and about how my saying ‘no’ isnt the same as being negative, and that anyone that pushes back when I say no to preserve boundaries for my health, whether they agree or not, isn’t compassionate, nor understands what I mean by toxic negativity. The thing is though, if I were talking about this and a friend asked me, I’d say with compassion and care, that it’s ok, society’s pressure to be always achieving is partially linked to captialism (I’d argue that daydreaming is productive, but others would say no, and it’s often described as a bad thing, not a good, even for writers. ‘Being bored’, a bugbear of mine, is another one of those things that’s often talked about now as something of a luxury. A first world problem. But, honestly? I sometimes think we describe being still and stopping as ‘boerd’ because it’s an alien concept to us. And none of that self-talk is compassionate. Not really.
Sitting still, and stoppingI was, as I always do, trying to meditate this morning and it hit me that my mind KEPT wandering to the fact that I feel like I’m so behind. No matter how gently, how often I pulled myself back, I saw that thought, inherently ‘judgemental’, inherently negative, and I couldn’t reframe it. I’m behind because I’m tired, I’m not well, I’m struggling. A lot of that is possibly to do with the fact my brain made an audible snap when I worked something out, metaphorically, and the shockwaves from that ‘click’ is just making my head and heart hurt. It changes how I relate to people, and I don’t like that, but it’s… important. There’s another blog coming, because there’s books to touch on, and more, but the biggest thing is my brain just isn’t as compassionate to certain toxic negativities. Nor how people in my circle of friends sometimes bounce off that. So. I thought about it. I can reframe this. I can gently let go of the expectation of doing the AtoZ during April. The planning and research aren’t going to waste, and neither are the friends and reading I’m getting to meet and do while I’m joining in too. But, this is my last AtoZ post, except, maybe a summary on May 1st of the stuff I did get done.
But it’s a negative concept?The act of surrendering or giving up on something is often percieved and portrayed as negative. You’re quitting after all, but its that whole perception that’s part of the problem.
Bit of a mind-teaser huh? The pereception of something that you’re doing that’s perceieved as negative in itself is the issue. Not the act.
Yeah, it took ne a while too.
Sometimes though, you just have to give in and surrender to the process. Especially when meditating…
The act of surrender as an act of compassionI’m still wrestling with this now myself, and I’m still working on it myself, so if you’re not quite sure about this concept, trust me, I get it, even though I’m talking about it myself. But sometimes surrendering and letting yourself go with the process is absolutely the most compassionate thing you can do, for yourself and your mental health.
It goes for almost every area of life too. If your friend isn’t respecting your boundaries, it might be an idea to give up on the closeness of that freindship, and recategorise them. If you’re struggling to get passed a behaviour, or reaction, finding out what you’re holding on to – even if that’s ‘I’m not ready to address that’ – is an act of surrender and compassion in itself.
My biggest ‘surrender’. Asking for help, or telling people I don’t know.
Turns out that my reaction to fear is almost identical to anger, because that’s what I was taught. You don’t show weakness, you don’t give people an in, you’re not vulnerable, they can’t use that to hurt you. So. You show no fear. you instead make yourself as intimidating as possible (I am completely aware that this may or may not be your experience of my personality, and if you’re really close to me you’ll have seen both, and it may have given you whiplash. Sorry about that).