Joy lies in the fight, in the attempt, in the suffering involved, not in the victory itself

(Ghandi)

Monday, April 18, 2011

fear is the heart of love

So much has changed over the last six weeks. Left my job, got a new one. Left my house, got a new one. Left my independent life, became a live-in girlfriend. Not all of it's been easy. In fact, most of it has been fracking hard. I feel like I'm treading water, waiting for my feet to be able to touch bottom, but all there is down there is a vast, terrifying, murky depth. Honestly, I don't know how long I can keep my head above water. Being mad is all very well when you live alone and work only three days a week. There's a lot of time leftover for retreating to bed with the sheets pulled up over my throbbing, pounding, naysaying head. These days I have to be awake, showered, dressed (and not just in sweat pants or a sarong) and ready to face the world by 6.45am. Neil asks me if I have had breakfast (puke at the thought), made lunch (ditto), tells me to have a great day. Without fail, I spend the entire hour and a half journey to work thinking how I can get out of going, or how I can be well enough to not be in one of the hospitals I pass, or what food I can binge on or junk I can purchase to cheer myself up. I am no sicker than before this all began. Mostly, I manage to feel "normal" and complete a day's work. But there's no doubt that the extra social pressure takes its toll. For most of the weekend I collapse thankfully into sleep or junk-TV watching. I eat entire packets of chocolate biscuits then berate myself for being so fat, lazy, unmotivated, hideous, ill, ill, ill. Neil asks me, fearfully, if I've taken my medication. Yes, yes, yes, but I am still mad, you see. The medication takes the sharp edges off but you can still be hurt by the blunt ones. My things arrived at Neil's two weeks ago and are still half-packed. I don't have enough cupboard space for my clothes, pantry room for my food, bookshelves for my books. My belongings randomly overflow out of boxes like the disjointed conversations I have with people at work. Nothing makes sense, there's no rhyme nor reason, no place for my Big Ole Crazy to be. I miss having space. I miss having peace and quiet and nothingness. It was easier to convince people I was okay when I didn't actually have to see them. I don't know if I can do this. But I am still here, trying. Title post from Death Cab For Cutie's "I Will Follow You Into The Dark"

7 comments:

Jane said...

I love Death Cab For Cutie.
It really is a difficult adjustment what you're doing. Huge life transitions, several of them, all at once. You're going through a lot. Everything you say, all that you are feeling, the pain and how it all is affecting you, it makes total sense. You'll come through on the other side though. You always do. You're strong. One of your best qualitites :)
I also know exactly what you mean about how easy it is to live in a way where you control what people think of you and you just deal with your own mental health separately to the rest of the world and when you're ready, you surface. It's hard to then transition into being a "live in girlfriend" where you're actually sharing that most intimate part of yourself every day. It takes a while to learn that you have actually brought yourself into a situation where you have a love and support with you, where you don't have to hide, but have someone to lean on when times are difficult. It still is a transition though. Whether a good or bad change, it's all still change. I find that I constantly live the balance of who I can "let in". I still fall apart sometimes and I have a number of people who are around me at a given time, so I need to make sure those are going to be people who are productive to my health. I hope one day, you will reach a place where you can let people get a little closer to you and let them love you where you are at, even when you're not feeling "okay." You ARE acceptable and loveable just the way you are. :)

Fallon said...

I feel you on the living out of boxes. When you have less space, it can kind of drive you nuts. I hope things get better for you!

Pixie said...

Oh sweetheart. I replied to your post on mine before reading this, and now I can see you are struggling.

Lil, what you have done is incredible. So much change. It is bound to knock you sideways. Look at you - a job, a partner, a new place. And you know that I completely understand your need for space, peace and quiet, as I have been saying it all week. But what you have accomplished is amazing.

But listen - you are the most important thing in all of this, and I really hope you can make time for therapy and talking this through, before it gets so overwhelming.

Be gentle with Lil! She is beautiful and amazing, and right now I think she needs a little bit of help and support.

Lots of love xxx

⚏ Arlecchino Fluorescente ⚝ said...

I understand where you're coming from with this. My doctor told me not to work but I've had to apply anyway because I don't have enough of an income. I know it's going to be a shock to get up everyday and actually focus on tasks as well as be around people.
I don't think that my partner understands that tablets aren't the answer either. We've lived here for six months and our stuff is still flowing out of boxes on the floor, so I wouldn't stress out too much yet.

xoxo

bpdisme2 said...

*hugs* hang in there. You definitely have a lot going on -- talk about overwhelming. I know what you mean about the whole hospital thing -- been thinking I'd be better off in there lately (G-d knows I need the help)... Wishing you all the best! :)

Jen Daisybee said...

Lil,
Moving is said to be one of life's biggest stressors, right up there with changing your job and getting into a new relationship or marrying someone. So you have pretty much covered three major life stressors in short order. It's no wonder you're tired, and stressed out! You changed your entire way of life.

The question is, are you happier with Neil, and happier with an income you're getting? If there are benefits to what you're doing and it's not just resulting in stress, then perhaps you just need to focus on getting through the stress of it, and giving yourself a chance to enjoy this new life. I know it's hard, but as someone above said here, you are a very strong person. It is obvious in your posts how strong you are. And I can't help but think that being in a supportive, loving relationship must be helpful to some degree.

If you really get to the point of thinking you need a hospital, then by all means, go to one. But it sounds more like you are just wondering how you're going to manage this new life. I totally understand that because I get stressed out a lot myself, and recently moved too. The things are still in the boxes. It has been three weeks. I'll get it all unpacked eventually, and you will too. You will get through this stress. Just go easy on yourself and don't berate yourself for not feeling like superwoman. Nobody is superwoman.

In the Pink said...

Oh Lil,

You are so wonderful woman...you really are and I am sad for you knowing things aren't going well right now. But it is completely understandable that you would being feeling so much inner turmoil right now. You have a new job, place, and less privacy. It all just takes some time and getting used to. One phrase always makes me feel better about living in clutter and it is, "I simply refuse to clean!" Say it with a smile and a bit of joy like you are not unpacking because you have better things to do with your time. If I were there I would bring over some wine and we would slowly unpack a box a day. We could gossip and laugh with the occasional chocolate break (but always within reason).

I am sending you a huge hug right now Lil. But also I dedicate my most recent Just For You music project to you. So when you get a chance stop by my blog and tell me what you think of your song choices. I really do hope things start looking up for you girl! Until then take deep calming breaths...it is hard learning to co-habitat but you can do this.