Everybody now…..

August 30, 2010

(everyone together now…)

‘Round and ’round the anxiety bush, anxiety bush, anxiety bush!

‘Round and ’round the anxiety bush

So early in the morning!

Your heart will race, your breathing is shallow, breathing is shallow, breathing is shallow

Your heart will race, your breathing is shallow

So early in the morning!

(okay, you can stop now)

The faster I fall, the quicker I’m coping with skills I had forgotten I learned. If only it wasn’t happening so fast. It feels like as each memory, flashback, panic, or anxiety attack begins an invisible hand reaches out to help. The invisible hands may have soothing words, a blanket, a cold or hot drink, or a Xanax, or simply a pillow to collapse on. It is exhausting going through this day in and day out. Boy, you have ONE allergic reaction and anxiety attack in a clinic under safe, supportive surroundings and your brain thinks it can do it over and over – yeesh!

This September will be my six month DID diagnosis monthaversary and I have decided to skip to the end. My brain is arguing with my obvious flawless decision, but I’m sure it will come around (yeah right!).

Hello! I’m recovering from a serious allergic reaction to Seroquel which put me in the hospital, an anxiety breakdown of sorts because of both the allergic reaction and going to the hospital, and a completely different nasty infection.

May the end of the weekend find you at peace.

Ciao!

Since at least April I have trying to organize my System by building a safe space internally. There would be a safe space for younger parts to play, eat, watch movies, etc., a conservatory of sorts, arboretum, kitchen, and central meeting area. At first it was working well, but only for a few weeks, so I tried different types of places. I visualized a house with different levels, a home built into the earth, and so on, but it always ended up falling apart and everyone scattered about. Recently I tried again and I felt a seething, disgusting pit, way in the back and nearly in the dark. When I tried to see and feel it there were muck-covered young girls trying to crawl out, but they were stuck. It was horrifying. They were just screaming and crying and I didn’t know what to do, so I tried very hard to send safe, loving feelings their way. I also lost my appetite for the rest of the day.

If a younger one comes through with a memory, or feeling there are always  a couple of older ones who quickly surround them with safety and love. They do that even when I’m not completely aware of what is happening, or before I can consciously realize what they are holding. I asked the older ones to help with such younger girls and they take this responsibility very seriously.

Time has been passing quite oddly this summer. My husband has been asking me to “Please pick a personality and stick with it.” (I think he’s accepted the DID diagnosis). Often I wake up and shortly after the day is over. I guess that may mean I’m dissociating a lot, or switching?

One of my books, The Dissociative Identity Disorder Soucebook, mentions that some Systems are very fluid. Last week I asked my therapist if perhaps my System was fluid, and that is why I am having trouble attempting any sort of organization. She agreed that it may very well be.

**Trigger** Over the past week I have learned two important things about my past. First, I remembered the first time my father had actual intercourse with me and it felt like the pain, anguish, and confusion of that flashback would shatter me. Second, the recurring dream of a particular street (my previous post) is an actual street. Two days after I learned that the street was real I felt and saw the young girls way back there stuck in the disgusting muck.

I believe that over the next several days or weeks I need to soothe those memories and those little girls and try to remain focused and aware. I’m not sure how to accomplish that if I’m losing all of this time, however. In other news, my husband is having minor surgery next week and the kids start school soon. I see my psychiatrist tomorrow, but he primarily deals with my medications. I feel I should tell him at least some of this, though.

Well, I’ve rambled on enough. I need to start my day and try to remain aware and calm. I’m going to keep my goals simple for a bit.

Hello. Most days I am up rather early, but today I slept in for four extra hours. I’m trying not to feel like I’ve wasted the day. This is why I think I slept in:

1) I’ve been having the same dream for several years, maybe once or twice a month. It’s on a street with two railroad-like tracks at the top. It’s a residential street with Mom-and-Pop stores among the houses. I’m a little girl, holding my father’s hand, and we always go to the same place. We enter a small business, he talks low to a couple of other men, and he leads me to the back of the building. The dream always stops there.

Two nights ago I had the dream again and I saw the street sign. I looked it up on a street map, found it, but there were no train tracks there. Hubby suggested trying to find where the trolley used to run. I went online, found a map of the old trolley tracks, and there they were at the top of the street I had found. They are just paved over now.

I really want to go and walk around that street, but hubby doesn’t think I should go alone. He’s probably right, damn him. It could very well be that absolutely nothing bad happened there, but my gut says otherwise. My father liked to take me places and sexually abuse me and I wonder if that was one of them.

So, the younger parts were very stirred up about that, and then this much smaller development:

2) A nurse called and scheduled my surgery yesterday. It’s going to be a two-fer (as long as he’s in there fixing one thing, might as well fix the other) deal. I hate going under anesthesia because of that loss of control feeling as you slip into unconsciousness, I’m afraid I won’t wake up, and  during my first major surgery they started cutting before I fell asleep. Granted, it was an emergency (they lost mine and my daughter’s heartbeat), but scary nonetheless. The surgeon who is doing next month’s operation assured me over and over last year (he operated on me last year, too) that what happened during that first c-section only happens during emergency c-sections and heart attacks. I believe him but I’m terrified anyway. Now I’ll probably start some stupid countdown. I asked my therapist to help me prepare mentally for surgery.

Well, anyway, I think that’s why I slept for 4 extra hours this morning. And look at me! Sitting at the computer when things need to get done……..

What do you think about the dream? Should I go to that street and walk around alone, or take what’s-his-face with me?

Have you ever had surgery while aware of your DID? Any suggestions?

Dream

August 18, 2010

*Trigger warning*

Last night I am taking my daughter’s most precious items and giving them to a man who will viciously kill and mutilate a woman while holding and looking at their item while she is forced to watch. I take one item at a time and slowly and methodically hand it to someone who will give it to this other man. The items are returned covered in blood and I make my daughter take them back that way. I do this to her over and over. By the end of the dream I tell her she doesn’t have to do that anymore and I am violently ill.

I woke up up suddenly, my arms pounding the table looking for my glasses, reoriented myself, and tried not vomit.

My first thought was, “I would never do that to my daughter!”. Well, duh…of course not. I feel this dream means that my mother knew what my father was doing to me, I felt betrayed and maybe closer to death, or stained each time he abused me. Also, my daughter did just as she was told, under protest, but I hushed her and she went to this man. I’m sure I did what my mother told me to do also. She didn’t try to run away or tell anyone else, but she was very confused.

This must be how I felt when it happened. That’s indescribably horrible. I feel like I was pimped out and left for dead. No wonder I’m fucked up.

“Talking out loud about your abuse can help bridge the gap between the emotion and the memory.” – Therapist

“I was severely and seriously sexually abused. I was neglected, verbally, emotionally, and psychologically abused.” – me

This has been going around and around here for weeks.I’m waiting for some breach in this wall inside.

I have a question: Often when a memory comes through, whether new or revisiting, it is accompanied by an intense physical reaction and it is difficult to reach the emotions associated with the memory. Do the physical responses block the emotions? Do I have to keep reliving these body memories before the emotions come through? Is this one of those “Everybody’s different” questions?

Two things that have been helping me sleep better: Marcus Aurelius’ “Meditations” and Lao Tzus’ “Tao De Ching” audiobooks on my MP3 player. I figure that by next year I will become a Stoic Taoist naturally after listening to them each night…… Without the audiobooks my dreams are either horrific or symbolic. I’d rather be a Stoic Taoist.

I would love to share relevant information or amazing insights, but I got nothin’. I’m just taking it moment-by-moment.

it was a good cry…

August 14, 2010

Accepting new memories…scheduling surgery for next month…first surgery since being diagnosed DID – yikes!….near riots inside….young parts on the inside screaming for attention as well….finding internal “babysitters” (thanks Meredith!)……..breathe….daughter’s stomach hurts and she’s not sure she’ll ever sleep again….find relaxing music and soft lighting, stuffed animals that will help daughter feel better….nightmares of the sexual abuse….tired, tired, tired….drive to farm stand in morning, too many people…relax, relax…..go to sporting goods store and it’s customer appreciation day with DJ’s and everything…aahhhh!…shaking, sweating, face turns bright red….chaos inside…eat out for lunch…another daughter starts crying at the table and she doesn’t know why…everyone inside comes together, works together, and lets her cry all she wants, holds her in the restaurant, speaks softly to her tells her how much she is loved until it all spills out and we agree it was a good cry and sometimes everyone needs a good cry.

So, why can’t we get together on the inside like that more often?

It’s been six years since I’ve let anyone touch my body, with the exception of my GYN and my husband. Since then my hair has grown to over four feet long, which is pretty cool, and I like my hair long. I’ve been afraid to touch my daughters hair as well, so their hair is fairly long, too.

Last week I made a hair appointment for the three of us and I kept it. There was much pacing and frantic, racing thoughts, but I went. As she washed my hair I had to keep thinking, “This is a safe place. No one will hurt you. It’s going to be fine.”. She couldn’t cut my hair in the chair, so I had to stand up for the first part. That was a little embarrassing. Then all of the customers started asking me how I got it to grow so long (“Nursing my youngest for 2&1/2 years”), will I be cutting it short (“Nope.”), do I want to donate my hair to Locks of Love (“Not today.”)? So, I ended up the center of attention for a short time, but it was okay.

Now my hair is three feet long, layered and shaped, with nice bangs. And…I’d like to go back next month and have it shortened just a little more. It really was a safe place, the hairdressers were very nice, and it felt good to have someone wash and fix my hair.

Hubby called later to see how I was feeling, and I thought, “It took me six years to go to the friggin’ hairdresser? WTF?”. With DID the little events can be huge blocks. I am no expert, and I speak from my experience, my books and research.

I was looking back on it this afternoon, and how silly this sounds, but it was a major event for me. It is just another step and I can’t wait to tell my therapist about my adventure at the salon. Next – Mount Everest!

Coping Season

August 11, 2010

Summer has been “Coping Season” here. That makes me think of hunting season, which makes me think of how I feel hunted by memories. Not haunted, because that would be spooky, and spooky is cool. A hoard of fragmented memories is constantly chasing me while I do my darndest to stay ahead. I’m not winning. They tackle me and beat me up most of the time. Hey! let’s see how many metaphors I can fit into one paragraph!

This is how it feels during Coping Season:

I can’t make my own art, so I have to steal it from other people. It’s all mixed up inside. There is no consistency. While one coping skill works one time, I have to try a different one the next. If nothing seems to help I often end up self-injuring.

Last month I decided to believe I wasn’t DID and hoped it would go away and now I’m trying to repair the damage that caused. In April and May I thought I had a good thing going. I had journals and cards for alters, daily internal meetings, and felt confident I could get through this process as long as I stayed focused.

I would very much like to be organized internally again, but I’m not sure how to begin. My therapist is terrific, but she feels our main focus should be coping until the kids get back into school. I agree with her for the most part, as the host, while others feel much differently.

Personalities are popping up, remembering, chatting, etc., and I’m trying to maintain some stability while the kids are home. I don’t want them to see me as broken, or as an explosive force, or whatever. I want them to know I love them and I am responsible and dependable.

“Coping Season” sucks.

Funky flashback

August 10, 2010

I’ve been in DID Denial World for nearly a month now. During this time a major battle has been raging, and I’ve been losing so much time and switching like crazy. I’ve just been ignoring it and pretending it’s normal.

Yesterday a memory came through that kind of slapped me in the face: I’m 6 years old, and sitting on the toilet in the bathroom ( no triggers, it’s just where I was). Over and over I’m saying in a low voice, “I hate my mother! I hate my mother!”. And a different voice, but coming from me I’m saying, “You can’t hate your mother. You have to love your mother. You’re not allowed to hate your mother.”.

It just went back and forth for a short time and that’s all I remember, but I could feel it in my cells that it really happened. It even filed itself with my other memories.

That angry girl has been around for several days, but since that flashback she’s quieted down a bit.

It was freaky.

I’m sure I’ll be back in denial again at some point.

Has anyone had a similar experience?