Sometimes I wonder about my future. Well, not sometimes... a lot, actually. I am only in my mid-20's, but I hear the constant tick-tick-tick of my biological clock. There is nothing I want more in the world than to be a mom. But the realization of the work I am going to have to do in order to get there is comparable to a climb of Mt. Everest at times.
I often wonder if I am meant to be married. There are days that it seems so clear and the most natural thing in the world. Of course I'll be married! I'll be happy! It'll be everything I always thought it would be! But the majority of my days are filled with doubt. Am I the type of person who can be in a successful marriage? Is that what I want? What's to keep me from running away once I get what I want? How can someone spend every day with someone else, seemingly for the rest of their lives?
It just floors me that it is possible. I've seen it, my dad's parents (50+ years) and my dad's brother (35+ years), but everyone else in my family has been married multiple times, with at least one very nasty marriage (abuse or neglect). Why should I expect anything less? Given everything that has happened in my life, how in the world am I going to be successful?
It floors me that you can be around someone every day and not be driven absolutely mad by them. I love my alone time. It keeps me sane. The idea of having someone there all the time is kind of a deterrent for me. I don't think that's how it's supposed to be.
But then again, I haven't found anyone who I WANT to spend time with, so of course that changes my outlook on things. Right now I'm trying to put these past guys in the place of the right guy, and it is making me hate the idea of marriage. I don't want them... I want someone who fits in that place. Who makes me want to spend time with them. Who makes me want to commit myself to forever.
Thankfully I'm back to work this week. (Yes, I really did just write that) I'm finding that the schedule is something that benefits me more than just having time to wander around with no plans. The aloneness and silence can be a detriment.
I've been functioning with a higher anxiety level lately, waking up a few times in the past week in full blown panic attacks, for no apparent reason. They weren't flashbacks or nightmares, just random occurrences of panic. It's rather unsettling, but there really isn't much I can do about it. I have a feeling that the surgery is a big part of it.
As I've gotten back on my normal schedule, I've been thinking a bit about how much therapy drives my life.
I think about therapy a lot. My week starts off with "OK, I can get through Monday because I get to see A tomorrow. One day. I can make it if it gets bad." Then, "Whew, it's Tuesday. No anxiety today because I have therapy after work." Wednesday, Thursday and Friday are generally tough days because I see them as only obstacles, not something that can be enjoyable. Things tend to affect me more, cause higher anxiety, and trigger me easier if they fall on these days. I feel trapped and alone. Generally Saturday and Sunday's are OK because it is the weekend, which means Monday is close.
My weeks work on this cycle. EVERY week.
I never get to enjoy my time because I am constantly wishing away the days for the next Tuesday to arrive. I can't wait for that hour. I finally have found someone that I feel safe talking to these hidden, dark, scary things with and I hate that I only have an hour to do this, and then have to wait so long to get a chance again.
I often wonder if that is normal. Am I the only one?
Things were quickly spiraling out of control for me last week. It was one of the worst weeks I've had in quite a while. I think I cried every day and when I finally collapsed into bed for the night, I cried then too.
I was exhausted.
Through my tears and pain Thursday night, I found the strength to pray. It almost felt like begging.
Help me to understand this pain. Help me to understand your path for me, why these things happened and what I am supposed to learn.
I woke up Friday and put my happy face on, as I was heading to have lunch with my mom and sister. I made myself eat a little for the sake of not raising questions, but just as it has been the entire week, I just did not have any appetite. I left with such a stomach ache (the stress has been aggravating my gall bladder issues, plus the fact that the one thing I had eaten since Tuesday morning was french fries, a big no-no) that I had to go home. I had other plans that afternoon, but I could barely sit up straight.
So I went home. I dissociated myself so much that I don't even remember thinking for at least an hour. Then the phone rang.
Nope, my new boss.
I got the job.
I'm sorry what? Me? The one who was convinced she blew her only chance by showing up 45 minutes late to the interview? The one who was convinced that they wouldn't be able to see past the fact that I am not perfect, but that I am an amazing teacher?
I couldn't believe it.
I got off the phone and had to check myself to make sure I wasn't dreaming. I sat there in awe/confusion/excitement.
It took me a while to realize that my stomach ache had gone away; that I wasn't in any pain any more. Suddenly I was hungry.
My mind has been focused a lot on my desire for a relationship. It is really the one thing in my life that I have not been able to push through and figure out on my own.
I struggle with other's expectations. My parents, my friends, my co-workers. Sometimes those are verbalized, most of the time it is my perception of what they think of me and why I am single. I have never had a boyfriend. I've dated, but never let myself get past the surface stuff and really get to know that person. At least, that was my M.O. before I started the journey of confronting my abuse about 2 years ago.
At the very beginning of my journey, I found myself messing around with a good friend of mine. We were both drunk and I finally let my guard down enough to let someone kiss me. Yes, I was 24 and had never been kissed. Take that Drew Barrymore, I think I beat you! ;)
Finally! I was normal! I really liked this guy, so I couldn't believe what was happening! The alcohol served its purpose to keep me in the moment for a short while. But no amount of alcohol could keep my past from screaming into my thoughts. I stopped him. Gave some cryptic reason why I couldn't keep going. He was so sweet. Asked if I wanted to talk about it, and of course I said no. We just laid in my bed in each others arms, exchanged a few more kisses, then he left in the wee hours of the morning. I hated myself for speaking up. Why did I say anything? Who's to say it would have gone past just making out? Why? WHY DID I SAY ANYTHING?!
Things got weird after that. Awkward. Not really sure what to say. Finally I got up the nerve to send him an e-mail asking him what he thought about what happened and what he wanted to do about it. I was crushed when I got the "let's just be friends" response. I didn't see him nearly as often as I used to after that. I think it was the fact that he knew I wanted something more than what he did. Eventually things got back to normal, stopped being awkward and we were able to go back to being friends.
But every time I see him my heart aches a little. He makes me feel safe. He is one of the only male friends I have had that I truly trust. He is someone I can see myself marrying. He is such a good guy. I saw him Friday at the hospital when he came to visit my best friend. They were neighbors and friends since elementary school. I met him through my BF. Just sitting there, chatting, laughing like old times made me want so bad what I don't ever think I'll get. Him.
But even in the midst of realizing I may never get the relationship I want, it gives me hope. Every time I think of entering into a relationship with no certain person in mind, it freaks me out. Without a person to visualize, I can't imagine feeling the trust, love, or safety. But when I think of him in that position, suddenly a relationship doesn't seem so hard. So impossible.
I just hope I can find someone else who makes me feel that way.
I have had a very stressful week. I basically lost my job, have had to go through the regular process of scheduling interviews, submitting paperwork, etc. Haven't been home before 9PM any night this week except tonight. Best friend had her baby yesterday. I was able to take the day yesterday off and be with her all day, but had to go back to work today. So I'm getting ready to head out there now and possibly spend the night to give her husband a break. They also have an 11 month old and he is having a hard time with everything changing so fast!
I have an interview Tuesday with the principal for the school I am interested in transferring to. He asked me to send him my resume last week, which I did. He e-mailed me back not 5 minutes later saying he saw that he and I went to the same college. We exchanged a few e-mails showing our school pride and not long after started talking about our basketball team and our chances in March Madness. I have a good feeling about this transfer :) If nothing else, at least he'll remember me!
I also have an appointment with the surgeon on Tuesday. Need to figure out a game plan for this gallbladder issue I apparently have. Everyone is convinced I'm going to have to have surgery. Me, not so much. But we'll see.
I had a rough time last night. A lot of triggers throughout the day. It messed with my attitude today. I'm hoping that going back to the hospital does not trigger me again. I need to find another method of release if it does.
Tonight that door became unhidden. The door to my greatest fears. The door that has NEVER been opened.
Finally taking this step to work through these fears and undo the lies that have been ingrained in me for such a long time could be exactly what I need to start moving towards the things I want in life the most. A husband. Kids. A family. But I won't be able to do that until I open this door and face what is inside.
I just hope it doesn't destroy me the way I feel it has the possibility to. It could send me back into denial, self-hatred and numbness. I hope I am strong enough to fight that. I hope I am ready.
I found out today that I have to leave my school due to downsizing. I work in an extremely fast growing district, and a new school is opening next year to relieve my current school of our large student population. With that though, goes our teachers. I thought I was safe because I have been at that school for 4 out of the 6 years it has been open, but I found out today that I am being forced to transfer because they won't have a spot for me. :(
I am crushed.
I love my school, my kids, the people I work with, everything. I can't imagine not working there. Maybe because I've never worked anywhere BUT there, with those people.
If I am lucky, I will get to go to the school that is opening and taking half of my kids. In that case, I would know most of them, which would make the transition easier. Most of the teachers in my position (which is about 60% of our current staff) wants to transfer there too, for the same reason: to be with and around people you have worked with and taught the past 4 years. Easy transition.
Here's the problem:
This new school that is opening should have about 30 positions to fill. My school alone has about 25 people who are being forced to leave and the other school that is downsizing to help start this new school is losing up to 40 (!!!) teachers that will also be trying for this school that their kids will be going to. 30 positions for upwards of 65 people. There is a good chance I won't get a placement there.
If that happens, then I basically can be put at any school that has an opening without having any say in that or what I will be teaching. They could technically tell me that I have to get certified to teach another subject in order for them to retain a position for me.
I'm so upset. I had higher seniority than 70% of the staff at my current school and that still wasn't enough to keep me there. I really wasn't worried until Friday, when one of my friends who started the same year I did (2006) was told he was going to have to transfer. I couldn't believe it. However, God immediately started softening my heart to the idea of having to leave. I spent the whole weekend thinking about why it wouldn't be bad to leave and start this new school. Why it could be a good thing. He kept reminding me that every time he has changed something for me in my career it has turned out to be a positive thing. Why would this be any different?
But now all I feel is sad. I hate change. I hate having no control. I hate not knowing what is going to happen. And that is exactly what is going on.
But God is in control, and he has a plan for me. It might not be the plan I have in mind, but he will give me the strength to get through it.
Spring is a busy time for me, which is why it makes going to counseling even harder. I'm stressed, I'm tired and I'm emotional. Not a good combination for calm sessions. I find myself more hysterical and unleashed during this time and the more I try to fight it the more stressed I get. Such a vicious cycle.
Something happened this weekend that took my focus off my work with cutting and onto something else. Ever since I opened my mouth in session about this, it has been something I have regretted. I don't want to talk about it, I don't want to hear how it is hurting me, I don't want to change anything. I'm done with it. I wanted to tell A that at the beginning of my session Tuesday, but because I had homework on it I figured we could go over that then I could start venturing away from it. Hah. Best laid plans, right?
Everything we talk about I can understand and agree with whole-heartedly with my logical mind. But I am not ready to do anything about it. It's like trying to convince an alcoholic to quit drinking because you want him to, not because he is ready to. It's just not going to work. And I'm getting (internally) pissed that we are still talking about this. She is not pushing me, she just wants to help. I am holding in my anger and stewing about it. Not good. So I told her at the end of my session that I am done talking about this. I don't want to do it anymore. Of course, she said she would respect my boundaries but made sure to let me know that she is concerned with how not talking about it is going to keep me stuck in that area of my life. How it is going to be harder to grow in other areas if you are so stuck in one. While I understand that, I do not care. I have been able to do EVERYTHING I have done so far without even touching the cutting. She didn't even know about it until last summer. It can be done.
I think she's starting to understand how "done" I am with this topic, because she told me that if I was going to make this decision, she would like me to put together a game plan for what our focus needs to be next. As much as I hate doing this, that is, prioritizing things in my life that I feel I need to work on, I am going to do it. That is how much I do not want to continue down the SI path.
JBR's recent post has been weighing heavily on my heart lately. I could have written it myself. Her thoughts on how sexual abuse has skewed her perception of marriage are exactly the same as mine. I know I need to work through my fears there... but I am TERRIFIED to admit it to A. The shame that even comes with saying the word sex pours over me as I sit here in my office alone. I can't even imagine how much I will shut down in A's. It keeps me from seeking out male relationships. But I am finding myself wanting it SO much lately. I'm so torn. I hate it.
The event that happened this weekend threw me for a loop. It sent me back to viewing my abuser in the eyes of exactly that, an abuser. Not my dad's friend. Not a guy I knew. But my abuser. I haven't been able to feel any anger towards him, but I was pushed a little closer to that this weekend. I can't talk to anyone (except A) about it because it involves confidentiality at church. My friends that I would normally talk to about it are now off limits because of that. I hate that, too. Ugh. :(