Tuesday, October 21, 2014

To me you are just my Mom, but how do you think others see you?

I took a break for a while from these questions.  I am pondering on my reaction and where I am in my healing process and how much I accept won't/can't change.  (My past can't change.  My parents won't change.)

  This is a series of post answering questions posed by Kevin's daughter.  I asked permission to answer each of these questions as if I was answering my adult children.  I will also include a link to Kevin's answer. (I don't read his blog until after I write mine.)


18. To me you are just my Dad Mom, but how do you think others see you?
(The original question is for Kevin so I am changing the Dad to Mom for me.)

Interesting thing about mental illness is you don't look sick.  Symptoms are chalked up to eccentricities or moods or bad days.  High functioning mental illness can go almost completely unnoticed by other people.  I had people totally disbelieve me when I say I have PTSD.  Emotional, mental and spiritual abuse doesn't leave physical marks that I could point to and say, "See this is where I am hurt."  I call mental illness a private hell for most people.  As mental illness becomes more and more disruptive in my life, it can be noticeable, but I learned to deflect questions, phrase what I say to mask the real struggle, and yes I used to out right lie to cover up.  It was a habit.  I worked hard to break the habit.  In junior high, other students were far more blunt and wrote in my annual, "to the nut."  That is when I learned to hide how I react to things.  I emotionally went into hiding.  It worked.  Most people just want everything to be fine so really don't notice what I am doing unless in interferes with what they are doing.  I am really quite relieved that mostly I'm not noticed at all.  I do know that my first counselor calls me hard working and courageous.  I don't see myself that way so in an interesting way this question becomes about how I see myself.  I'm not really sure if I've answered the question.  But these are my thoughts on this question.   

Monday, October 20, 2014

I'm sad

I was reading over on another blog about her heavy therapy session.

She hit the nail on the head for me.


She asked a poingnant question:
- I’m grateful to have this, but why am I not worth the full package?

My comment:
I asked the same question over and over and over. My answer was finally for me, I am worth it…..my parents couldn’t give it. I don’t know if this will become your answer or not. It is what I’m finally accepting from this summer. My parents are in their 80’s and I’m in my 50’s. They totally missed out on being my parents. They chose their fears instead. I’m still sad. But I believe I’m going to be ok. Sorry you are faced with the same question. It is a painful one. You are fortunate to have Cat in your life. Your lunch looks delicious.

I thought I had accepted that my parents chose not to be my parents.  I thought I accepted that I am an extension of my mother in her view and she can't see me as anything but a threat to her well being.  I thought I had accepted that my father used me as a human shield from my mother.  I thought I had finally got over the longing for parents.  I was wrong.  I am still not 'over' not feeling like I am worth the full package.  I wonder when the grieving ends....

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Tired of being tired

I set a record.  I missed writing yesterday and slept for 11 hours.  That is a record for the last 5 months.  Sad thing was I woke up feeling tired. 

I had a whole paragraph of rambling that I just deleted.  I am not addressing what I am feeling right now. 

Taking a bit of a break so I will share some of my pictures of magnificent Mono Lake. 


At a distance

Sense of size

Not alone in our admiration

Friday, October 17, 2014

Keep your fork


The best is yet to come.  

I listened to a 20 something rhapsodizing over high school, "the best years of her life."  I didn't have the same reaction.  My feeling was I survived it once I sure don't want to do it again.  Many people look over their shoulders at childhood, elementary, or high school as the absolute ideal age to live.  Or perhaps college is held up as the best days ever.  My early years were a struggle, my teen years I battled enmeshment and denied effects from childhood.  I didn't expect to live long enough to graduate from high school.  I am now a grandmother.  I love it.  I love sending sweet grandchildren home with their parents.  I am happier than ever in my life.  I am starting to truly believe that life is keeps getting better and better.  In this life and the one after, the best is yet to come. 

Towering trees over 1000 years old.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

What goes up....

must come down.  My body does not love me and holds a grudge.  I spent Fall break National park hopping with DH.  We started in Death Valley and the dunes then wandered up to Mono Lake.  Then over the pass at Yosemite.  I took pictures of Half Dome and El Capitan made famous by Ansel Adams.  Then off to the Redwoods and a life long dream to see where the movie "The Gnomemobile" was shot.  Then back down the middle of California to stroll through the Sequoias.  Explored Boyden cave then off to admire General Sherman. Finished the amazing week at the Lava tubes in Flagstaff, AZ.  What a week we had.  My body slowly recuperated from the hectic trip.  I knew there would be a day of payback.  It wasn't if, it was when.  Today was the day.  I missed work but chose to go to karate.  I love going.  After an hour of the 90 minute class by body packed it up.  Fortunately, I am well familiar of the early symptoms of passing out.  I sat down before I fell down.  My body reassured me exactly who calls the shots in my life.  My mind can push my body but my body pushes back.  I accept the limitations because I have to.  It was an awesome week and so worth one day of feeling like a wilted dandelion.  I'll rest and go again tomorrow.

Death Valley

Sand Dunes

Mono Lake

El Capitan


Fallen Giant

Morning before Sequoia National Park

So close

General Grant

Overlooking Kings Canyon

Boyden Cave

Largest living anything.  Several blue whales could fit inside.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Redefing Beautiful

My sister shared a wonderful post on defining beautiful. 

Years ago, I was reading a romance novel that the term 'introverted Quasimodo' was used.  I always remembered it.  The meant the person was beautiful on the outside and twisted and ugly on the inside.  Today's culture obsesses over outward beauty.  I remember years ago hearing a story about a little boy being lost.  When asked for a description he described his mother as the most beautiful woman in the world.  When they finally found the boy's mother frantically looking for her son she was not the 'beauty' they were expecting.  Her face was plain and her clothes the same.  However, to the little boy she was beautiful.  This illustrated to me that what you look like on the outside doesn't matter as much as who you are on the inside.  Before counseling, I thought I was an ok person with a few life challenges.  However, counseling created a safe place and my mind remembered.  The soul deep ugliness that tore my childhood to shreds.  I wondered how I could be beautiful with so much ugliness inside.  I withdrew from family and friends because I didn't want this ugliness to leak out and harm them.  My first counselor described the process I would be going through of cleaning out the emotional and mental garbage out of my life.  It was tough and painful.  This summer I was tossed back into the cesspool.  I know the process.  Clean up and remove junk.  I know what needs to be done.  Inner peace doesn't come easily for me.  It is an on going battle to leave my past behind.  It keeps trying to intrude on my life again.  Day by day I choose to embrace honor, kindness, gratitude, courage, and all the other emotions. 

Keeping things beautiful?