Friday 31 January 2020

Tripping over trauma

For the last 12 years I have parented children with significant trauma and as a result I am often find myself tripping over my own trauma when I am least expecting it. The resulting stumble that trip creates might overwhelm me for days and sometimes for much longer.

That is where I am today.

After the first set of trial days for Kevin in October, my own childhood trauma memories moved their way back into my daily existence. Some were new pieces of a puzzle that I did not know existed and some were old, I thought I had processed them the first time I worked with a trauma therapist in my early 20's. Clearly, (although I did a lot of work) I was going to have work through them all again, especially the new ones.

That's the thing, I had no idea they had happened, my brain had protected me for all these years because the truth was more than I could handle. It it still more than I can handle because I have so many blank spots where things do not make sense and no matter how hard I try to figure out what happened all those years ago.

Even though I can't fill in all the blanks my body remembers, things scare me or make me oddly uncomfortable. Last night I worked through a physical reaction to something I had discussed in therapy and it was so hard to manage. I was nauseous and filled with anxiety and felt as though my chest was going to explode with each deep breath I took to try to calm myself down.

I am 42 and this is so hard.

How do my children manage it? How did I manage it as a child?

Why do we live in a world where children are hurt by adults or other children? Why do we live in world where this okay and people are not held responsible for the choices that they make.

I know that part of my struggle last night stemmed from what happened this week. From the fact that I spent almost an entire day and night in an ER with Randall as we fought to get him the psycheratric help he so desperately needs. Then, the next day, I learned that Kevin had accepted a plea deal that would see him getting probation and therapy rather than serving time for what he did to his siblings. And, although I never wanted him to go to jail, I am so upset that he gets to walk away only accepting the smallest amount of responsibility for his actions.

Much like the people in my childhood and in the childhoods of so many others, he is not going to be held accountable for what he did. It is complicated to wish that your child is going to be punished for the choices that they made when you know that hurt people, hurt other people.

Who hurt him?

Why cannot we be in place where we just love and support each other either rather than hurt and destroy as we try to manage our own intense pain and brokenness...

I wish I could answer that. I wish that this was not my reality. I am trying so hard to be okay. To not go back to that very dark place I was in last week where the best option was to just cease existing.

Friday 24 January 2020

for me

I have mostly written in this place for myself because it helps my head to get the thoughts out and because there are so few people that I can talk to about what is happening in my life. There are a few people whom I have told about this place and a few others who have stumbled across me because they found me again on twitter when I followed them and they figured out who I was or were interested in what I have to say.

That anonymity has meant that I could come and go here as I wanted to and not worried about what I have said or not said because so few people come to see what is written on this little corner of the internet I have carved out for my own.

This week I wanted to die. I had a plan. I had the means and it truly felt as though I could not live another day.

That was Tuesday. Today is Friday and I am still here. To be honest I cannot tell you what stopped me and it was not the first time I have felt that way in the last year and half. I did see my therapist that day and I know how worried she was. That night I texted her and told her I needed her to hang on to my meds so that I did not take them all in an attempt to end my life.

She certainly helped and did all the things she should have done. I am not sure why it was that I stopped and asked for help rather than taking the pills.

But I did and I am still here.

The days feel hard. I get wake up each morning faced with the grim reality that is my life and I do not want to get out of bed. Randall texts me and say mean and hateful things and I wish that there was a way to fix him. Kate is sassy because I am annoyed that most of our forks have disappeared and although that is not a big deal it kind of is because of where they came from. Yep, forks are just things but when getting out of bed each days take all the energy you have fighting with your teen about forks becomes just one more thing you have to do.

I do not want to do anything.

I move slowly in the morning because everything hurts and I am not a morning person. I have coffee and try to muster up the will to shower and get dressed, if I do both before 9am it feels like a monumental accomplishment. I push through all the things I must do like take care of dogs and attend appointments. I might fit some school in somewhere if I can find the emotional resources to manage it. But, the reality is I spend a lot of time thinking about how hard life is and how much I hate mine.

Sometimes I fantasize about how life could be if I made some changes. How it would be if I left Jack and started over again just with Kate and then I feel guilty for even thinking that. He has also given the last 15 years of his life to this marriage and family when he could have been doing other things that would have been a hell of lot easier than the life we have lived. I care about him but we are so broken and I just can not see a way for us to mend ourselves and be in relationship with one another.

Where will I be in a year or even in a month. I can not see or hope past this day because that just feels overwhelming.

Depression is the not the companion I would have asked for at this point in my life.