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Mentally right now I feel like I’m huddled in a corner, rocking back and forth, whispering, “just take deep breaths,” over and over.

Period approximately 6 days early? Check.
Biopsy rescheduled for two weeks later because of the early period? Check.
Personal life, though lacking outright drama, filled with hard situations I’m trying to keep myself out of? Check.
Work utterly overwhelming and confusing? Check.
Cash flow way too low for current expenses? Check.
Ability to react to things in a timely and effective manner completely shattered? Check.

Gah.  I was in so much pain from the sudden start of my period yesterday that I had to pull over to cry while driving home.  I lost the whole evening to drinking water, taking painkillers and staring mindlessly at the TV, unable to muster enough caring to even read a book.  I am overwhelmed in my personal life by pressure from people I don’t have the energy to deal with, or by problems people I care about have that simply can’t even offer advice or much support on.  I have managed to hold it together at work overall through everything that’s been going on in the last year or so, but now work itself is becoming a threatening, complicated place to be, mired in many vague requests for information I don’t have and that I don’t know where to get, and people angry that they aren’t getting what they didn’t exactly ask for.

I have spent every last cent of my raise furnishing my house.  I don’t regret having done that because I need a place to be calm, but even with the decent insurance I have, I don’t know how I’m going cover my rising medical expenses (and we haven’t even gotten to dental work yet).  And even at that, the weather here has been so horrible that I’m not even calm at home half the time.  I’m sleep deprived from 3 am storms.  And even on nights I do get enough hours of sleep I wake up feeling anxious already like I’ve done nothing but have stress dreams all night.

My mini vacation is only ten days away and yet I feel like I’ll never be able to finish all the work necessary.  I do recognize that feeling this freaked out and anxious is cyclical (like the raging anger) but it sort of merges with the the other anxiety and becomes incredibly overwhelming.

GAH!!!!  If only I could focus I could least bury some of it in work or something.

Edited to add:  I guess I should mention that one year ago this week the river was only barely starting to recede and the whole city, myself included was still reeling from the devastation.  I had also just broken up with Oak and become ‘official’ with Hawthorn.  Two years ago this week, I was standing outside an emergency room, alone, with one less tooth in my mouth and had nothing more than some gauze to hold to it and incredible degrading rudeness from the staff there.  I drove myself home.  It isn’t all surprising that now is the time that I’m not doing well.

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So I left work early yesterday and went home and straight to bed.  I did get up at some point to eat and read a bit and wash my hair.  Total though, I slept for about 12 of the last 18 hours.  I definitely feel better.  I could use a couple more days of forced rest and non-interaction with people, but living requires work so I guess I’ll find that stuff where I can over the next few days.

I have to go for an annual exam next week, so I guess I’ll talk to my doctor again about medication options.  Honestly, though I’m not that hopeful about it.  I recognize that my attitude about the whole things shades my experience and it probably won’t be helpful if I’m not open to it.  But at the same time I think I have the tolerance left for one, just one, more round of ‘let’s throw this drug at your wall at see if it sticks.” After that, I’m done and will only try other methods.  I have been feeling so crappy the last few days that I’m will to give it one more shot.  But again it’s hard to gauge how much of my mood is affected by the seemingly endless rain and grey skies here, by my period, by my insomnia and exhaustion (which I just don’t think going to be cured by drugs, maybe therapy and exercise, but drugs seem unlikely).

After work I’m going to pick up my newly framed prints, check on a chair possibility at a nearby furniture store and then go home and lock myself in for quiet couch time.  I have to work at both jobs tomorrow and Friday and I recognize that I better get my much needed peace and quiet when I can.  One of the traits I’ve always recognized in myself, no matter how good or bad I’m feeling, is that I need equal amounts of time alone and with people.  Or I need those to be directly proportional.  One of the things I need to work on is being better about making sure I’m setting the time for myself.  This was easy when worked alone at home, but being in an office is more problematic as I need more space of my my own in the evenings, but I also feel more like I want to get out and do things and not miss out on fun I could be having.  Which of course doesn’t end up being fun when I’m exhausted and emotionally over extended.

It really feels weird how tired I am of spending money too.  I bought 4 new pairs of pants (to replace the 4 pairs of work pants I’ve been wearing for a year) and new (work) shoes and a new spring trench (bright, ridiculous and floral).  Usually this is big exciting stuff for me.  I think the furniture and home shopping has taken the shine off everything.  Maybe this is a good thing, maybe I’ll simply be less of a consumer when all of this over.  I’ve been working to shrink my consumption footprint as it is.  Maybe now is the time.

Maybe the high point of the last few months has been the journey of self discovery.  Living alone I don’t need a microwave, I don’t want too many dishes or unnecessary things.  I can learn new ways of cooking and relaxing and being.  I do like this aspect of it.  On the other hand,the journey of self discovery is exhausting and the anxiety has already sapped so much out of me.  I feel like I need to find a way to hit the “pause” button for a while and just be.  Not be shopping.  Not be worrying.  Not be financial planning.  Not be suffering a broken heart.  Not be organizing.  Not be packing or unpacking.  Just be.  Just be me.  Surely I can delve deeper and discover more about myself if I can slow down and just be, right?

Okay, I don’t know how much down time I’ll have in the next 2 days.  Here’s hoping everything goes smoothly and quickly and leaves me leisurely unpacking.  In the mean time, think of me schlepping things into the cutest little attic apartment ever, moving on toward home, finally.  Hope everyone has a good and amazing weekend!

Ugh ugh ugh.  I am full of stiff, painful tension everywhere.  I went to bed early last night with possibly a migraine, possibly a combo barometric pressure/tension headache (nausea, light sensitivity and but a weirder pain than I’d previously associated with migraines–bilateral and tight). I am going to make my physical therapy appointments next week.  Remind, okay?  I was talking to a coworker this morning whose wife works at a branch of the clinic I”m going to and the conversation reminded me of mow much better this will make me feel.  Also my regular therapist has started pointing out how much my shoulders bunch up when I talk about some things. Yes, I really need to get on the physical part of treatment.

Of course moving day is tomorrow too and I’m hoping to have some relief of tension once that is done too.  And I think at my next doctor’s appointment I’m going to revisit the medication thing.  I was thinking about it driving home last night and yes, I really do feel way better than I did 8 weeks ago, but better does not equal good or even level and normal.  So once I’m moved and settled I’m going to revisit the SSRI question.  I’ve had three people tell me int he last week how much Cymbalta has helped them, so I guess I’ll ask my doctor about moving completely out of the class of drugs we started with.  I admit I am still somewhat resistant to the idea of medication at all, but I’m afraid I might have hit a peak of feeling better and I need to keep improving, I can’t level off where I am right now and be as effective in life and at work as I need to be.   Also I don’t know for sure that I notice if I feel better or worse when I take the St. John’s Wort, but I think I feel better when I forget to take it.  I guess with that and the Lexapro and the Zoloft I’m wondering if whatever the serotonin factors are with that stuff isn’t what is making me feel so fuzzy and removed and unclear in my thinking?  So if it’s going to be drugs, the more I read and talk to people about it, the more I definitely feel it needs to be a different kind of drug.

Exercise and physical therapy are definitely the two key points I’m missing as well.  So post moving means getting back into a routine again, instead of the chaos life currently seems to be.

Work, with the new position, is ramping up to crazy stressful pretty quickly, so I definitely need to get everything else in hand so I can manage life.  I came in today already in trouble for not having done something right.  This is something I couldn’t have known, and the person that has to talk to me about it knows I couldn’t have known, but I hate making mistakes and I have so much else to worry about.  Plus I need to revisit some of my work habits and get into a different kind of planning mode.  I’m overwhelmed.  I know how to do everything being asked of me.  I have confidence in my skills at work (why can’t I be this together in my personal and emotional life?). I’m glad to have the position I do, but it is a lot to think about and organize when my head is already full.

Miles to go before I’m me again.

Blerg.  Dreaming you’re pregnant is dreaming about change, right? (I’m too lazy to actually look it up.)  Last night I dreamt I was with Hawthorn and I was sick and getting sicker.  I finally told him and he took me to the hospital.  When I got in with the doctor and looked down, my hand was incredibly swollen and misshapen.  She gave me some pills and told me it would fix and it wouldn’t harm the baby.  I stood up and I was six months pregnant.  The doctor sent me off with a nurse to make sure everything was fine with that.  Then I had two of the cutest little babies ever.  They had huge eyes and were very flirty and charming and kept laughing and pulling on my ears while I was trying to nurse them.  I was really sad that I had to give them up for adoption, but there was no other way to deal with it, because I was already pregnant again.  Then I was in Chicago with an old friend and Hawthorn.  We ran into a bunch of people that She and I knew from the west coast who were now in a famous band.  For some reason Hawthorn left  and my friend and I decided to go see the show but the jerky lead singer was trying to make us pay for the tickets which were really expensive.  So we went somewhere else instead but they wouldn’t serve us drinks because I was 6 mos. pregnant. Then we found this 4 year old black kid dressed in gang colors and made some epic trek to return him to a neighborhood we really shouldn’t have been in, all the while discussing the merits of long term jail sentences for weight loss, exercise and quiet space to recover from our lives, vs. actually continuing to live our lives the way they currently are/were.

I woke up really missing my friend and feeling incredibly bloated (as I’d been huge in both dream pregnancies).  I’m not sure I want to even take a stab at interpreting this.  Some of it seems really obvious but much of the dream was dark and creepy in the details and I actually don’t want to think about it too much.

I’ve been thinking a lot about therapy earlier this week. I really do think I am much better.  I was trying to express to my therapist that I’m managing to seal up my pain and move past my anxiety to function well enough, but that I really felt I needed to continue therapy because surely sealing it up was only temporary measure and that in a few months or years or whatever I’d be in the breakdown place again and that’s intolerable.  However I just don’t have the emotional resources yet to be able to deal with directly confronting and trying to pull out what ever the blackness inside me is.  Perhaps once I am settled in the new place, and have a place to safely be.  I’m not sure how clearly I expressed this and it’s been tugging at me.  Because I really do think I need to be in therapy, but I’m definitely having trouble digging down to the rough parts.  And I think it will be hard to push myself to that point.  I’ve been really seriously thinking about my past Buddhist practice and how I can return to that in a less intellectual and more emotional way.  Thinking about mindful living and letting go.  I think that focus of my energy on that will go a long way to keeping the anxiety at bay.  But somehow it seems at odds with digging in pulling out what ever is rooted in my chest that periodically grows and makes me so miserable.  Indeed the entire thing, my entire future life is about balance.  I’ve been meditating on balance and finding in aspects of my life (work vs. personal, planning the future vs. living in the moment, &c.) but I think I need to put a lot more thought toward finding the balance in making myself seem safe and secure and relaxed and working at extinguishing the root cause(s) of what undermines that sense of stability for me periodically.

Also, I think it wasn’t until I started talking about it in therapy that I realized just how traumatized I still am by last year’s flood.  I watched this trailer for a film someone made about it and ended up in tears.  I wonder how many people there are in this city who feel a devastated about the whole thing as I do, who didn’t lose homes or have major property damage and thus think that their post flood trauma isn’t as real or as valid.  I think we all really suffered mentally, even without losing a home it was weeks of living on what the edge of war or apocalypse must feel like: will we still have water, what happens if all the utilities fail, if the infrastructure is gone, how will we manage?  Plus, I can’t be the only one who had a back to back series of other dramas, emotional and physical, happen rapidly after the flood.  Even now as we move toward tornado season, I find I have a smattering of fear about the weather, wondering if those rains will come back.  It seems impossible the encroaching spring could feel so threatening.

Sleep is still uneven.  I think the 5-HTP is helping although I find I’ve been waking up a little before my alarm and feeling restless and not quite awake but unable to go back to sleep.

I think maybe I’m running on cycle of: Feel fine > do too much > break down > reset/recuperate > feel fine > do too much > &c.   I slept horribly last night.  I feel weepy and overwrought this morning. I have a million things I mean to get done in the next 36 hours, but I think I’m in the rest/recuperate part of the cycle.  Or moving toward it from current or impending break down.

What I really need is someone to come cuddle me up and stroke my hair and tell me I’m pretty.  Alas there’s no one in this time zone that I’d feel comfortable asking to/letting do that.  So I guess it’s hard focused determination to have a positive mental attitude and fucking suck it up and move forward.  Because sometimes that’s all there is.  Some days there just isn’t touchy-feely loving healing available.  It’s not bad though, sometimes part of the process is burning it down and building it back up, right?

I have spent seemingly every spare minute in the last few days either shopping for, planning for, measuring, or carrying things to the new apartment.  I’m exhausted, ya’ll.  I stayed home sick from work yesterday for the first time since this all started.  Tuesday night I had panic attacks, diarrhea and a terribly heavy period.  I got no sleep and opted out of work.  I’m glad I did too because I was barely mentally or emotionally functional when I got home late Tuesday evening, even before all the badness started.

I was thinking then that I needed to be careful still with my own self care.  I am feeling better.  I swear the two sunny warm days went a long way towards that.  And even with the work and money it’s taking, moving is helping too.  It gives me something to focus on and be excited about.  But still, I am a long way from being better.  In therapy on Monday when we started to touch on the deeper part of my problem with asking people for help I could sort of see the long painful future of digging this out and making myself whole.  I have definitely overcome the first high hurdle of asking for help, from my therapist, from my family, from my friends.  I think I am dealing well with either recovering from, or sidelining to deal with later, the break-up stuff.  I think I have made a mental space for myself that is safe and is about moving forward and healing and growing.  And I feel really, positive about all of  it.

However, I need to keep reminding myself that my emotional reserves are still at 0% and that some things are still taxing for me physically.  Just because I’m sitting in a sunny meadow and can see a clear path ahead doesn’t mean I am out of the woods.

Normally I’d take on moving as a herculean task that required my monitoring and management at all times and required as little help as possible, but this time I’ve asked for as much help as I can get.  For people to come pack for me, and help me do things.  I’m hoping to make it as stressless as moving can possibly be.  I’m trying to focus the worry away and keep my eye on the space I’m creating and how warm and safe it will be.  I’ve been successful in this thinking, but still I feel almost as if I need a little fairy on my shoulder reminding me to breathe and slow down and that it’s okay to take some time and cry or just rest.

Last night I started the St. John’s Wort in place of the SSRIs.  No comment on it yet except I seemed not to ave stomach upset or insomnia, so that’s a vast improvement.  We’ll see how it goes along.  I’m being better about my regular schedule for vitamins and fish oil too, so hopefully that combination will prove to be helpful.

Now I have to wonder if it’s any coincidence that I’ve been mostly fine (physically and sometimes mentally) in the evenings and gross, ill and sludgey in the mornings when I take the SSRIs right before bed (since taking them in the morning made me sick all day).  3 more days and then another week for subsequent side effects to wear off.  Ugh.  Seriously though, I was fine last evening.  Cheerful even. And then I slept really poorly last night (mostly from stomach upset and weird dreams). And now I feel wobbly and headachey and just YUCK. And I have a very long day ahead of me.  Alas.

I spent some time talking to my friend, Aloe, last night too.  She and I have had a rough go of it for a while and I’m not even sure we’re solid enough to be called friends.  But she is good to talk to about anxiety &c. and she’s strangely easy for me to open up too.  She made some good suggestions and was generally supportive.  Also I saw the friend that I sent yesterday’s ‘mean’ email too and they were utterly relaxed and understanding about it.  So there’s you go, tell someone who cares about you what you need and they will deliver.  Unheard of!

Oak did his nightly text check in to make sure I haven’t jumped off a bridge or run off with a Saudi prince (I don’t know that that’s why he’s checking in, I just assume).  I was so charmed by part of the exchange with him that I immediately after it happened thought of sharing it here.  And then I second guessed and started worrying that this space is for talking about me and I shouldn’t just be recounting text exchanges with my ex-boyfriend.  But then again he’s a huge piece of how I ended up here and has been really supportive of my recovery, despite me having left him for another man.  So after fair bit of mental back and forth I decided that maybe Oak is what I should be talking about in therapy this coming Monday.  That said, I want to record the conversation for myself:

Oak: Are you doing alright?
Me: I’m actually feeling almost good tonight.  Filling on a short shift at [my restaurant].
Oak: If a handsome man comes in and tells you he’s moving to Ireland someday, be nice to him. (this is essentially how we met, although I was aware of him long before that)
Me: I think that was a once in a lifetime lucky chance on my part.
Oak: You may be right, but maybe someone who wants to move to Ohio or New Jersey.
Me: I don’t think so.
Oak: Good call.
Me: I’m thinking small apartment, space and time to myself.  Plus I’ve heard a rumor that there’s a handsome man moving to town who might occasionally meet for a friendly beer if I get too lonely.
Oak: That sounds like a good plan for 2011.

The entire thing set me to thinking, not unhappily about how we met and how I can remember so many details of our pre-relationship interactions.  This is significant because I have fairly spotty memory for such things usually and rely mostly on my friends and family to keep track of the the more exacting parts of the history of our relationships.  But with Oak I can remember it all clearly and play it back.  Secondly, in this exchange, even though it’s text, I can see exactly what he’s doing and how he looks as he makes each comment.  His wry half smile when he thinks he’s clever, how he runs his hand over his head, &c.  I have said here before that my intention isn’t to get back together with him, nor does that even seem like something sane or rational to entertain at this point.  But I think about the history of it a lot and I think maybe I need to write it down. Not necessarily here, but map out everything I remember so I can save it and maybe use it later, fictionally.  Or not.  Maybe it just stays somewhere, marked down, so I don’t ever forget what a subtle, yet beautifully charming romance it was as we got together.

I feel like therapy is going to be a long, hard row to hoe.  I am, in my every day life, trying to take the above advice and dwell less on, “What is wrong with me?” and focus more on where I am going and what I am going to do and who I am going to be.  But I find I am getting a little apprehensive of about therapy as it isn’t necessarily focused on asking what’s wrong but it may end up much more directed toward the past.  And I understand that with Saturn 4th House transit and all that I need to work through that as part of my move forward, and, theoretically, once it’s dealt with, it’s done and I do move forward. But, yow, is it just me, or does that seem like a lot of teary, yucky work?  I’m up for it, I guess, but today I feel kind of exhausted just thinking about it.

I have a long, long workday ahead of me.  And then some much needed, hopefully achieved rest and then a weekend out of doors with Violet and yoga with Moonflower.  I feel better just thinking about getting through today to the good parts.

I am in a snit of self-righteous indignation this morning.  Also I’m tired and my head hurts.  These things are related.

I worked a long, long day yesterday.  My day job was full insane troll logic and epic jackassery on the part of a client.  Still I went home, took a power nap, dressed up all pretty and went to my evening job, where I maintained a genuinely cheerful mood and felt somewhat energized and almost relaxed.  I got off my shift early enough to go home, read VC Andrews (what, oh you read crap sometimes too) and get to bed at a reasonable hour. Get to bed at a reasonable hour, be sleepy and and fall asleep without Klonopin or other sleep aids (I usually take Benadryl).  For the second night in a row.  This is exciting!  Good news!  Wheee!

And then one of my jackass friends texted me in the middle of the night to make some bullshit inappropriate comment about Hawthorn.  Not only was I woken up, but I was fucking livid, to angry to go back to sleep easily.  Now I’m running on less than six hours sleep and my good mood of last night has been killed by feeling like my safe zone for talking about things has been violated. (Also don’t tell me to turn off my phone when I sleep.  I use it for my alarm and I never trust that to work when it’s off, plus it’s my only communication and emergencies where I’m needed can happen.  And I really don’t think it’s too much to ask people to be civil and polite and not be loud in the middle of the night.  I should not have to turn off my phone because people have no self editing.)

This morning I sent an email to the offending friend telling them to please respect my schedule and not call of text me at unreasonable hours in relation to my schedule. And then I told them that this and previous comments about my relationship with Hawthorn, though surely well intended, had hurt my feelings and insulted me.  And that as far as I was concerned if we were going to maintain our friendship that the topic of my relationship with Hawthorn and it’s course and ending were 100% off the table conversationally until I said otherwise.  I expressed that my emotional resources were low and I’d appreciate boundaries I set being recognized.

Here’s how I feel about this right now:  Was my anger over the text out of order and utterly disproportionate? Yes, but presumably because it was the proverbial straw of people saying dumb things.  I feel fine about the email and really somewhat proud of myself for having set boundaries with this person.  A large part of my problem is that I often won’t speak up for fearing upsetting other people (this is mostly with my mother but bleeds into all my relationships–like I never told Oak how much I needed him and if I had things might have much different, but I didn’t want him to feel bad). I guarantee you the email I sent this person made them feel bad, despite the fact that I was polite and, I feel, overly generous and as kind as I could be about it.

As I mentioned before my emotional reserves are at 0% and though I could regret it later, I am not above burning bridges over this shit.  I understand that I’m in a messed up mental and emotional place and probably shouldn’t be making too many big decisions, but if folks can’t recognize how much I mean business when I say, “don’t cross this line” then I don’t need them.  Not negotiable. If looked at from a certain angle about 90% of my problems come from letting people cross lines with me that should have been drawn long before.  I meditated on it for a while this morning and I think therapy is supposed to make me happier.  Make me understand my motivations better.  I don’t think it’s supposed to make me an open book and a cuddly puppy if I am not that person.  So even if it’s only because I was pushed to the edge, I think drawing this line is a very good thing for me.  Though somehow ironic, since my other problems do involve needing to be more open.  Then again, it is about being more able to speak my mind and speak about what I need. Yes, all in all a good thing.

However, the entire incident has left feeling much more tense and physically locked up than I’ve felt in a week or two.  Which means I have been feeling better.  Too bad I needed that confirmed by feeling worse again.  I have exceptionally long workdays today and tomorrow too.  Where is my handsome houseboy to come rub my shoulders? I swear, missing things like this is the worst part of breaking up.  Who will rub my feet now!?!?

Quarter dose of Lexapro starts tonight (I know I said that yesterday, but I was wrong, I had one half left, so this time quarter for reals, yo).  Hopefully the upswing in how I’m feeling continues.

I’m tired.  No, I’m beyond exhausted.  Fatigued isn’t really it.  I’m too worn down to find a thesaurus and look up the word for it, because I am wiped.

Here’s some songs.

I’m a Mess

Lucky

Mood to Burn Bridges

Put Me to Bed

 

P.S. The new Amos Lee album was clearly intended for me to play on repeat at this time in my life.

Yesterday as I drove to work the news on the radio was grating as it usually is so I randomly punched a button and got the college station playing Eastern Orthodox liturgical hymns in Russian. It was so surreal and unexpected that it seemed like a sign of something. It was also incredibly calming so I searched out the station website to find out what was playing. Of course there was a playlist for every episode of that particular show, except for today. I guess it will remain a mystery. Though I might go through some of the back playlists and try and find some of the pieces. I could use some sacred calls to God right now even if, no especially if, I can’t really understand them.

Work was work, in it’s long, boring, but excellent source of escapism kind of way. I came home through icy streets and took a long, long shower. When I got out, Hawthorn was home. We talked about our days. We had a long conversation about my new medications and side effects and how I was feeling.  And then he took a deep breath and said, “I’m just not sure I can sustain a long term relationship. I’m not sure how serious I can be about us.” Yeah, you fucker, I know, you keep telling me. So I said, “Can it. Just take a deep breath and let it go.” He tried to reiterate that he loved me and it wasn’t me &c. but I cut him off and said, “Seriously, take a deep breath and let it the fuck go. I don’t even care enough about this right now to talk about it.”

And you know, I don’t. I mean I do care. I want to work it out. I want everyone to have space to breathe and regroup and revisit it all in the future, but oh my fucking good goddamned hell, I can not keep having the same fucking conversation about it. I have been telling him since the beginning that the pressure for long term, consolidated, expressly planned relationship is all in his head. He acknowledges that I have never pressured him, nor even brought the subject up. He asked me to move in with him. You could go so far as to say he pressured me, or perhaps just badgered me until I said yes. And now, 11 months after he started seriously courting me, he’s just not interested in following through? Fucking fucking fuck. I still feel it would unfair of me to scream, “I gave up my whole life plan for you, you fucking selfish asshole.” Since I do want to own my choices and I made the choice to be here. However, I can safely say that I didn’t necessarily make it in my right mind, and I won’t go so far as to say I’m being punished for that because I don’t think the universe is vindictive, but enough already. At least this time I can hopefully dig myself out of one hole before I fall right into the next one.

I actually feel good about being that angry about the whole thing. I mean, I still need to get him on the train about how right now is about me and unless he’s expressly going to talk to someone (else) about his crap then I am not interested. Because I tell you what, I certainly am not getting better listening to his fucking midlife crisis.

All that said, my current plan is to stay here, in this house, in my own room, with my own things, through April. I will at that point assume plenty of student and musician vacancies and try and find something for myself. I have support in the interim. I know if it gets really bad, some friends have a guest house up the street they will certainly let me use. But really I just need some time to get the rest of me together, I do not want to move right now. And if that means shutting Hawthorn down every time he tries to put his unnecessary worrying on me, then I’ll do it for the sake of cheap rent and at least not feeling isolated and alone. I really do not want to live by myself right now, it doesn’t feel at all safe. And while the entire Hawthorn situation has a bunch of emotional baggage that goes with it, I’d really rather be here.  I’ll take his bullshit, since it comes with genuine hugs and many very solicitous gestures (surely born of guilt).

I don’t know what will be different next week, but I just keep repeating to myself that I need to get through this week. Like that is a big enough goal for me. I think I’m going to take some sick time Friday afternoon so I don’t have to go back to work after my therapy appointment. Saturday I’m hopefully going walking with good friend, Violet, so I can fill her in on all of this and feel like I have allies in this city too (my reasons for being less open with her about this are mostly because I kind of can’t stand sympathy, so I really needed enough distance to be able to deal with people reactions).

Last night I got a decent night’s sleep and as always when that happens, everything seems much less dire today.  Also I seem to be tolerating the Lexapro much better than the Zoloft.  Less stomach ick and dizziness and all.  I’ve decided to hold off on the muscle relaxants for 3 or 4 days until I’m sure of how the other drugs are making me feel.  Although I really, really am looking forward to not having the muscles in my shoulders feel like they are made of metal.

This morning I accidentally found listings for hotels for sale in Spain, so I will pepper my workday with fantasies of being a hotelier in the Pyrenees.

How much better would life be if this was the path you walked home from work?

I am not having a good day.  I assume it’s the medication switch up.  Last night instead of my usual Zoloft (and occasional Klonopin), I took Lexapro several hours after taking Skelaxin for the locked muscles in my neck.  I woke up just after midnight feeling fairly wide awake, although dizzy and disoriented.  I know I went back to sleep but I don’t really feel like I slept at all.  This morning I am shaky and a little queasy (although less nauseaous than I was with the Zoloft). I have a weird migrainey headache that is sporadic but leaves me feeling like there is a wide open hole running down the side of my skull.

Last night I commented to Hawthorn that I’m not really pleased with taking SSRIs at all.  I do want to get better, I hope this is a way towards feeling better, but right now they are making me feel YUCKY.  It seems like some regimen of Klonopin, physical therapy and psychological therapy should be enough.  I functional enough most of the time, I guess, but I definitely have moments where I wonder if I should be driving at all (even when I’m feeling clear headed) or doing anything besides laying on the floor hoping it all passes.  Hmm, re-reading this I sound like I’m way over dramatizing it. I guess I just don’t like feeling like my body is full of chemicals.  And I was already feeling like my mental stuff was out of my control and presently the drugs don’t yet seem to be changing this.  So I feel anxious, crazy and now nauseaous too.  Wheee!

My plan for right now is to just get through this week. Hopefully with lessening side effects. And while I will surely keep documenting my stupid love life and drug reactions here, I’d like to use this space to keep track of the good things too. Working toward a more positive focus as a way out of the anxiety. We’ll see.  Just this week, gotta get through this week.

I had a breif exchange with Oak last night.  He said he was feeling lonely despite enjoying time with his friends.  I suggested that the upheaval of the past year (being overseas, his family problems, our break up) might have left him feeling a little disconnected.  He said that yes, spending time with two happily married couples who seemed to have it all probably was contributing to his sense of loneliness. And you know, I’m pretty sure it was a fairly off hand comment on his part but it hit me like a ton of bricks in the chest.  Oak back tracked and said it was no big thing, just an off night for him.  He admonished me to keep busy, keep distracted and promised that if I could get through this it would get better.  “This” I suppose means either move out and away from Hawthorn, or piecing it back together with Hawthorn and settling down.

The two giant, leafless trees outside my window are filled with hundreds of little birds fluttering between branches and telling each other about the snow.  Tiny winter birds of happiness. Today I will make them an omen to help me remember that spring is never that far away.

Last night Hawthorn slept in his new room and I slept alone in my room that was once ours.  Without his furniture, his clothes, his anything, the room is huge and half empty, even with my things pushed around to try and fill the space.  I changed out all the bedding and carefully remade the bed exactly like I prefer it. I sent Hawthorn a text reminding him to kiss me good night (he was in the bath, I wasn’t being passive aggressive, it was just the most convenient way to tell him something).  He came and sat on the side of my bed, told me I had a pretty face, kissed me and went off to his own room.  I didn’t cry, but perhaps only because I was so tired, the emotional pressure was certainly in my chest.  Instead I thought of Vikings and heroic princesses and fell asleep.

I slept well.

I have, in fact, not had much trouble sleeping since I started taking the drugs.  I used to be restless, toss and turn, not be able to shut my brain down enough to go to sleep.  Or if I did I’d wake up in the middle of the night, my heart racing, suddenly panicked and afraid to go back to sleep, afraid to sit up in the dark.

The Klonopin staves off the heart racing panic attacks, day or night. It seems to help with the racing thoughts at night as well, the horror loops of all the bad things my imagination can conjure. But even on the night I haven’t taken the Klonopin, I find I fall asleep easily (for me anyway) and wake more alert and coherent.  The Zoloft does make me feel strange during the day still, but I think maybe it is already helping me sleep at night?

As it happens for the last week or so, the only thing that’s been waking me up at night is Hawthorn coughing, or snoring, or tossing about in bed. And now he’s on the the other side of the house.  So I slept soundly.

The entire Hawthorn situation is distressing and confusing. I feel like every bit of clarification I try to get on what he wants leaves me more mystified. For now I will enjoy my sleep.  I’ll call it healing sleep and revel in it. And as long as he remains tender and comforting when we are together, I will try not fret about any of it needlessly.  But then, isn’t that the whole point of trying to get better? Not fretting needlessly?