Of Talk and Tension

13,184 Days Alive

701 Days Straight on Duolingo

2 Doctor Appointments

I carry a lot of tension in my back. Specifically my shoulders and neck. I guess a lot of people do. I was told by two separate people, both therapists in their own way, to unclench and do some stretches.

So I’m doing some stretches. And wishing it wasn’t so painful. I’ve been too active the last few weeks and haven’t taken time to properly rest my body. Nor my mind.

Mx. Steph, my psych therapist, says that I’m running from something. Grief, I think. Reconnecting with Uncle Comic made me miss my dad something fierce. They’re so similar in humor and background, sometimes, it’s easy to see why they were good friends for so many, many years.

I also have a complicated tangle of feelings about whether or not I should still be allowed to miss my dad, seeing as a) I now know he wasn’t my biological donor, b) he did actively avoid being in my life for the fifteen years after my mother left him, c) I have been made to feel like I’m not allowed to mourn him, and d) I still have Papa Ben and my biological father. Though, as I have been fond of saying lately, he has the communication skills the gods didn’t give a hunk of cheese.

We talked a lot about my triggers this session. About the sexual assaults and how I’ve drawn firm boundaries like: never getting intoxicated in public, never staying somewhere overnight that doesn’t have a locking door, and never sharing my bed (beyond sleeping) unless I want to.

I don’t let many people close. I have many acquaintances. I have few friends. In fact, I think I could count them on both hands and still have fingers left over. I’m not as isolated as some, but a half dozen people I am willing to confide in is better than none.

One of the coping techniques Mx. Steph taught me today was “PHALT”. It’s a self-check in list to help when one is feeling overwhelmed. If the answer to one or more of the following is “yes”, steps can be taken to try and minimize the issues.

  • P: Am I in pain?
  • H: Am I hungry or under-hydrated?
  • A: Am I angry/experiencing intense emotions?
  • L: Am I lonely?
  • T: Am I tired?

As I am burdened with glorious purpose, oh, wait, no. I got that wrong. It’s fibromyalgia, not glorious purpose. Whoops. Been watching too many Marvel shows lately! Anyway, as I have fibro, the first and last, P and T respectively, are almost always a “yes” answer.

When it comes to hunger, lately my appetite has been way wonky. Like, skip lunch and have to force myself to eat something for dinner some of thing.

And I’m not good at anger. Or intense emotions in general, at least not when it comes to expressing them. I get overwhelmed.

Am I lonely? Short and long answer is “yes”. I often equate it to feeling like there’s a howling wind or chasm in my chest. And I feel like a burden, or bothersome, so I try not to reach out when I feel like that which seems to just exacerbate the issue.

I’m also supposed to avoid resonating my sadness with music. So I should likely stop listening to a bunch of songs for now and stick to upbeat stuff rather than wallowing in the sad with a soundtrack of moody music.

The last challenge Mx. Steph put me up to was eating more often. Hobbit-y but little meals and snacks. Which means going shopping at some point. Because I have jack-all in the pantry right now. I’m supposed to eat breakfast, have a mid morning tea or coffee and a snack, eat lunch, have another cup of tea or water and an afternoon snack, the dinner and, if I need to, an after dinner snack to train my body away from starvation mode and more towards being hungry again. Because the long-running joke that I’m “accidentally anorexic” is less joke than I am truly comfortable with.

In non-depressing news, I’ve discovered the theme of my memoir! Love, in all it’s many flavors. I’m basing my memories around the eight types of love as defined by the Ancient Greeks. Eros and Philautia are what I struggle with the most. So I’ll be working on that as I write.

Anyway, I’ve been blogging for like, half an hour already. I’ve got some therapy homework to do. And then I’m off to bed.

Take your meds, folks.

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