Sunday, December 30, 2007

In the Waters

I love water. I love water in so many ways. I love to drink it and be in it and be near it…pretty much me + water = happy love time. That’s why I love to spend my free time at the lake. I don’t care if I have company or not, being near the water cheers me up almost every time. I love to take walks by the lake or sit on a rock/log overlooking the water or dip my toes in or throw some rocks in or climb on the cliffs or sit on the beach or…or swim! I love being in the water. I find water soothing and calming. Water gives me warm fuzzies. I could stay in the water forever…if I didn’t get tired and pruney and stuff. In fact, generally, when I’m swimming at the lake, there gets to be a point where I float on my back for an extended period of time. I love it because I love feeling the water surrounding me and filling my ears with its delicious music. I generally don’t like to taste the lake water, but that’s another story altogether. That’s also why I love bubble baths…even more than long, hot showers. I love to linger in the water and let it surround me. Plus, I generally have God time when I’m in the water. I do a lot of praying in the lake. God and I talk while I’m at the lake because I’m relaxed and I feel close to Him. So, we swim and walk and climb and talk. Similarly, most of my Bible reading gets done either in the bathtub or while I’m listening to my ocean CD. For some reason, in my mind, God and water go hand in hand. That’s why when I read my friend’s blog about fog a week ago, I couldn’t stop thinking about swimming. He compared the fog to the Holy Spirit, as it surrounds you and the view in front of you is limited in varying degrees. As I drove through the fog the next day, though I loved pondering my friend’s insights, I couldn’t dwell on them for long. Not because they aren’t amazing because they really are. It’s really more because I think of fog in a different way. As I drove, I was frustrated by the fact that I was in the car and not in the fog itself. It seemed like I was wasting a deliciously foggy day riding in the car when I should have been on a walk or sitting on a bench or something (now, you should understand I feel similarly about rain and sun). I think this way about fog because on foggy days, the air is thick and almost clings to you. It’s like swimming except the water is just vapor, making it thinner and easier to get through…plus, you’re less likely to drown. I just love how it surrounds you, though. It reminds me of the times I spend floating in the lake because the fog covers you like a blanket. The best part is that it’s a blanket you can’t escape from. So, of course, as I think about the fog, I think about the lake and my love of water (and apparently water vapor). I know that my feelings about fog and water are the same because they are both something I love to linger in. I don’t know if I can put into words why the fog and the water are so dear to me and how they make me feel so close to my God, but they do…every time. It could be because we are reborn through water and the Holy Spirit at baptism. I remember my pastor telling me once that he often ponders his baptism when he washes his face in the morning. I do occasionally think of baptism while I’m in the water. I think about immersion and how I’m washing away the stress of the day and the dirt of the day and how I’ve been washed clean by Jesus’s precious blood. I can’t say that’s the most common thought, though. I really think it has more to do with feeling God’s love. I marvel at water all the time, though I don’t know why. I can’t help but find beauty in it. I admire the beauty of the water itself as well as the way it moves. I admire the force of the water, whether that force is being used to generate electricity or wearing away at rock or beating on the sand. I admire its strength and persistence. The thing I love most about the water, though, is the way it surrounds me, the way I can linger and rest in it, the way I am able to be in it and move with it. I see God’s love in much the same way, which may be why I feel so close to God when I’m at the water’s edge. I believe God’s love to be beautiful and strong and active. I love the way He surrounds me with it, wraps me in it. I love the way it moves me with it while also warming me and surrounding me like a blanket…except both the water and God’s love are blankets I can’t control…they are tangible, yet I can’t grasp them and manipulate them in any truly productive way. They continue to surround me no matter what. Also, neither one every truly leaves me. I mean, most of my body is made up of water…and I was made in God’s image to love others as He has loved me. Besides, they both seem to call to me…I can’t stand to be away. There’s a part of me that I find in the water…and in God’s love. My soul yearns for God’s love just as my body yearns to taste and touch water. Oh, to bathe in it forever!

It's a Beautiful Day

Let me just say that today rocked! I feel I should write about it because I write so frequently about the rough patches in my life. I mean, I don’t want to be remembered for how I behave on bad days. I want that to be tempered by my mood when I have a wicked sweet day. However, I will keep it brief.

Today started off rough because my dad tried to wake me up before my alarm. It’s not that I hate mornings. Early morning is actually my favorite time of day. I love the way it smells. I swear the air smells different around dawn (and shortly thereafter). I love it! I wish I could enjoy it more. It frustrates me that with my work and class schedules, I often miss the early morning. I’m either so tired that I don’t get up to see it, or if I am up, I’m at work/class. That’s why I love those weekends when I’m out camping. I don’t camp that often, but I love it when I do. I love it when I take my middle school and high school girls tent camping at the lake for the weekend. I love sharing that time with them. I also love to camp by myself, though. Granted, I’m in a camp ground, and that does hinder my enjoyment a wee bit, but it doesn’t change my love for it. I love sitting at my campfire admiring the stars and listening to the waves hit the rocks. I love waking up to the sound of birds and water and breeze. I love eating my breakfast in the sun, looking out at the water. *sigh* I love the smell of the dawn mixed with the scent of bug spray and wood smoke that lingers in my hair. I know…it probably sounds like I love to smell disgusting…and I suppose that detracts from my girliness, but I don’t really care…it’s the way I roll. :P Anyway, back from the tangent. I am also a pretty chipper morning person…if I wake up the right way. I like to wake up on my own in a relaxing environment…or I can wake up to an alarm and then get ready in a relaxing environment (alarm clocks require a 20 minute recovery period in which I am not so talkative)…or I can wake up to someone saying my name…maybe even gently shaking me. But if you yell at me to wake me up or try to wake me up by making a bunch of noise, Heaven help you, I will not be a happy camper. I have been known to lie in bed and “rest” until the noise diminishes and I’m less grumpy. So, my dad opened my bedroom door before my alarm had gone off so that the combined noise of Saturday morning cartoons and my family running around could wake me. Yuck!

Whatever…I got up and got all beautified so I could go shopping with the fam in Des Moines. It wasn’t a grand experience or anything, but it was pretty good. I mean, there was not yelling or fighting or scenes made. I found a jean skirt and a few cute tops and a new book (yay!) and a mini Christmas tree with little ornaments for my apartment next Christmas. I spent time with my sisters (double yay!). Overall it was super.

After that, though, my day really started to rock. I met up with two of my favorite girls in the world at 5 and Diner and had a delicious meal with great company. Then, ice skating for like 3 hours…it sooo rocked! I mean, we got to talk and laugh and listen to music and get a bit of a work out. It was so relaxing and amazing. It was so nice to have girls’ night, too. I really needed that. I needed to spend time with those amazing girls. I haven’t felt so flippin’ happy and carefree for a long time. I wasn’t even forcing myself to act happy and carefree. I just was! I felt so comfortable and relaxed and fun. I fear I may have talked too much. I will attribute that partially to feeling more comfortable and happy and free than I have in like a month. I felt like I could just explode with joy (and cuteness ‘cause I looked amazing!). Awesome!

Then, I topped off my evening with a couple of my favorite things to do. I took a warm bubble bath (awesome!) while drinking a mug of cocoa (yum!) and reading my Bible (amazing!). I am on top of the world, despite being sore and possibly bruised. Anyway, I just had to write it out, though…partially because it’s a reminder that life rocks and I am so blessed and that after living through a few dozen shitty days mixed in with a little bit better than shitty days…an amazing day does come along. Rock on, God! Rock on!

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Faded Blue Jeans

A blog about denim was bound to happen, as I’ve been spending hours working with denim lately. I’ve been ripping seams out of my old jeans (on purpose) so I can salvage the material…in hopes of giving it new life in the form of a couple sewing projects I have in mind. I’d explain them, but few people really get them as it is. Needless to say, I find them exciting. I love the thought of completing a sewing project or two over break…and…I love denim. I’m the kind of girl who wears blue jeans with her pearls. In my little world, denim goes with just about everything…but then again, in my world pearls go with almost everything, too. Hmmm. I love pearls almost as much as denim. I love sweet corn, too, because it goes with almost everything. I believe corn to be the denim of the vegetable world, but that’s another story entirely. Anyway, I love denim. Mind you, I don’t love it an excessive way. I’m not all “Yes! A bedazzled denim blouse!” or “You know what I need? A denim jumper!” or “You know what would go great with this floor length denim skirt? Yes, a denim blouse with a jean jacket! Sweet!” I don’t consider denim to be a wardrobe in and of itself…just a necessary part of any wardrobe. It’s a staple, if you will. Hmmm….I’m getting off topic.

Anyway, working with my old…er…well-loved jeans got me thinking about well…faded blue jeans…and of course how that could possibly connect to my crazy life. At first, I was caught up in the blueness of denim (that’s how I like my denim – blue). I was thinking about faded blues. I thought about how I’m feeling a lot better lately. I’ve been pretty “blue” for the last month. Let’s just say it was a bad month at the end of a rough semester. I’ve felt like a wreck. I feel silly saying that I was “blue”, though, because it doesn’t properly describe how crappy I felt. I mean “blue” generally refers to depression or feeling down in the dumps or extreme sadness. I don’t think that was really where I was at. It was rough, don’t get me wrong, but depression is generally not my thing. I actually was just really anxious and withdrawn. I know, it’s an interesting combination. It’s just that I get/got so anxious about everything else that it started to bleed into my social life. I got anxious about whether or not people actually liked me, whether I was a bother, if I vented too much, if I was driving them up the wall…So, I’d start thinking I’d be better off keeping to myself. Yeah, that’s not really blue material. I think maybe it’s white? Like white with fear? I mean, fear and anxiety kind of walk hand in hand. The sad part is that white denim is rarely okay. Generally, it’s tacky and unnecessary. I suppose that could describe my anxiety and my bad month, but…not really…It was probably unnecessary for me to feel so anxious, but I don’t know that the bad time I was having was really unnecessary. I mean, good came out of it, and I think it was bound to happen at some point. As for tacky, that’s a stretch. The best I got is I occasionally use the nickname Taky. Whatever.

My next thought regarding fading blues was regarding the way my blue jeans faded. I mean, the fading wasn’t uniform at all. I knew it wouldn’t be on some level, but it still surprised me when I took off the pockets to find darker blue denim underneath. And to be honest, it was hard for me to imagine my jeans ever being as blue as the fabric I found under the seams. This got me thinking even more about the past month. Right now, overall, I feel a lot better than I have in quite a while. Am I on top of the world? No. But I’m having a lot more wicked sweet times during my days than I have been, and I feel a lot more content with who I am and the life that I’m living. I can’t say I’m rockin’ my life right now, but I’m definitely enjoying who I am more…and realizing more about who I really am. Believe it or not, I’m not that bad. I’m actually kinda sweet (in a “that’s wicked sweet!” sort of way, not necessarily in a “you’re such a sweetheart” sort of way. The latter may be true as well, but I think that is something that is more accurately judged by others, and I would feel conceited stating it.) I’m actually a lot stronger than I previously thought and a lot more mature. I’m not a big cry baby, like I often feel like. I actually do pretty well of taking care of what needs to be done, and I generally can stand on my own two feet. However, I will admit, that I generally don’t take care of myself as well as I take care of others…and the more anxious and upset I get, the worse it is…So, if you’re one of my amazing friends that have given me tough love in the last month and “made” me eat, drink, breathe, sleep, study, or any of the other necessities, thank you so much. That’s just what I needed. I needed someone to care about me when I didn’t really care about me – someone to remind me I was worth caring for. I believe you can’t accept love until you realize you are loveable, and one of the best ways to learn that you are loveable is by seeing that you are, in fact, loved…despite being an imperfect wreck. The best part is you all have been very good about showing me Christ’s love and pointing me back to Him. You’ve done an amazing job of reminding me that you love me because God loves me, and that God loves me more and better. Right, but back to the jeans thing…it’s not a uniform wicked sweet feeling that I’m experiencing. Overall, I’m doing way better and feeling pretty wicked sweet and generally pretty content.

However, just like my jeans, I am very aware of the fact that I have some parts that aren’t feeling that great…some parts of me are a darker shade of blue, like the denim beneath my pockets. Those are the parts I’m aware of. I’m aware of the fact that I feel uncertain about going to Okoboji for New Year’s. I’m uncertain about being at camp with a bunch of people I don’t know. I’m afraid I’ll make a bad impression or that I won’t fit in or that I’ll cling to the few people I do know just a little too much. It also freaks me out because believe it or not, I’m stronger and more mature than I once was, and I’ve been attempting to be honest and live that out while I’m home. Has this been easy? Absolutely not. It makes me feel out of place at times. It makes me feel ready to move on to something new. It makes me feel…like a jerk…sometimes…and to be totally honest, I feel a bit guilty about telling my parents I would be gone for New Year’s. Oh, yes. Today, we got to talk about the whole thing for the second time. My dad grilled me on the details of my trip and was disappointed with the number of blanks. However, I did stand firm. I told him I was going and he didn’t need to understand why. I told him all he needed to know was that I wanted to go and that I’d made arrangements and was going. I guess it’s settled, but with all the stuff going on between my parents and my sister, I kind of feel bad…I suppose that’s a pretty “me’ thing to do…to feel bad for doing what I want to do…but…it’s this new thing I’m trying…it involves me hashing out a new role in the family and trying to take care of myself and my needs a little better…and this trip directly relates because barring any major catastrophes while at camp, it will do a lot to help preserve my sanity and sense of self. So far, I’m doing okay at home, but I can’t say it’s been super easy. God and I have been discussing it often. Especially because I know that I probably have crazy dark blue parts, still…parts beneath the seams (Haha…you can only see them if I come a part at the seams!) Anyway, I’m pretty sure those parts still exist. I’m pretty sure I have some unresolved pain and unexposed craziness lurking somewhere in me. I know that there’s always a chance that something could cause that to be brought to the surface (though I generally pray that’s not the case). Yet, I pray that God would grant me strength and courage each day to live according to His will and His truths and to face those tough times with boldness knowing that God will never leave me nor forsake me. I pray that He would sustain me and gird me with a belt of truth so that when I have to face the next rough patch, when someone exposes what’s under the seams, I may not be consumed by it. I pray that God will help me to cling to Him, and should I be too tired and weary and battered, He will provide me with friends that will help me to get back on my feet.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Managing the Symptoms

Okay, before I dive into this blog, let me tell you a vaguely amusing side story. This blog was originally going to be titled "Kiss my eyes and lay me to sleep", the lyrics from Prelude by AFI. I love that song, and it would have been an appropriate title, as it would match the thoughts and emotions of this blog. However, it was a metaphorical phrase I could not carry for long. So, I was going to change it to something that matched my mindset better, "Managing the Symptoms"...however, this morning I changed the title so it would jog my memory when I had time to sit down and blog. When I sat down two minutes ago to start writing this, I realized that in my exhaustion, I had accidentally entitled my blog, "Managing the Sleep". Perhaps that is only funny to me because I'm so tired, but I felt it was amusing enough to share with you; so, there you go.

So, as I lay awake last night trying to cope with the pain deep in my soul (the soul part is important to remember so that you don't think I'm ignoring a tumor or something), I contemplated all the ways we cope with soul pain and how we so often provide ourselves with supportive care, rather than curative care. The goal is generally pain management through pharmacological and non-pharmacological interventions. I mean, last spring, when my counselor determined (through the use of her computer quiz thing, which I probably could have found on the internet on my own) that I was actually struggling with anxiety as opposed to depression, she was quick to offer me a prescription for anti-anxiety meds. I'm not into using pharmacological interventions as a first line therapy; so, I turned them down. I, instead, have turned to tons of non-pharmacological interventions. I've tried to manage my pain through bubble baths and relaxation exercises. I've used quiet times at the beach and journaling. I frequently use distraction for pain control. One of my favorite ways to do this is to find a task to busy myself with that will keep my mind off the pain. This is very effective for me because in my busy life, there is so not a shortage of available tasks/distractions. I can use other people for distractions -- their lives, their problems, their joys, their stories. I can use purposeful tasks such as cleaning or fixing things or building/making things or shopping. I can use a good book as a distraction. Or if all else fails, I can distract myself by focusing on a very specific problem instead of my systemic aching.

My absolute favorite method of distraction as pain management is music. I have found it very effective to wear headphones. When I have my music on, I can live half in the real world and half in the delicious world of music. I find it to be the non-pharmacological intervention that most closely mimics meds. I mean, I am aware of what's going on in the world around me, but I'm not fully engaged. I'm a bit detached and removed. The real benefit comes from the fact that half of my brain is engaged in the music and the other half in real world awareness, leaving no brain left to register any pain. The problem comes in the fact that I can't always have my headphones on. Sometimes my battery dies before I can get to the one in the charger. Sometimes I find myself in situations where headphones would be considered rude -- when my friends need/demand my attention, when I'm in class, when I'm at work/clinical, when I'm driving (though then I have the radio).

Now, until recently, these interventions have very effectively managed my pain. However, my level of pain has increased significantly recently. Last night, I actually couldn't manage my pain with music. I found myself lying awake listening to music but still feeling an ache intense enough to prevent me from sleeping. Honestly, my pain recently has averaged to be about 8. Yesterday morning, it peaked at a 10 on a scale of 10, in all honesty. Last night, I didn't think it was a 10, but it was definitely too high for me to handle and too intense for my typical pain management regimen. Needless to say, I was frustrated by this. I started thinking of new ways to manage my pain. I realized then why people self-medicate. At a certain point, you realize that your pain is so great that you need to up your therapies, and it's a well known fact that pharmacological interventions can nearly eliminate pain (at least for a time), and if you use round-the-clock dosing, you can sustain a nearly painless state. Now, generally, I'm a law-abiding goody-two-shoes type, being 21, I thought of the two most obvious options for self-medication (tobacco and alcohol, in case you couldn't figure that out). I'm so not a fan of tobacco; so, I quickly threw out that idea. The second, I contemplated rather seriously, as it was feasible and would probably be effective. However, the adverse effects of that particular therapy were too unappealing for me to follow through, especially at 2:30 in the AM when I'm already in my pajamas. It was at that point that I realized that I had been to this place before, that I'd seriously considered self-medication before. However, the medications I was going to utilize would have appeared more benign (just not in the doses I had planned). It saddened me that I would be even considering frustrated me that I couldn't take advantage of a pill-pushing counselor at that moment. However, I was very pleased with myself for not considering any more permanent interventions (if you catch my drift).

I then started thinking about how the sensation of touch can block pain sensations from registering...something about the pain sensations traveling faster or competitive inhibition at the receptor...I forget the actual mechanics. Anyway, point is, I was thinking about that as I caught myself trying to clutch at the location of my own pain. Unfortunately, you can't hold your soul and make it feel better or massage the pain away. I will say, though, touch does help. I figure this must be related to why some find themselves using physical intimacy to cope with the spiritual/emotional pain. Lord knows I've wished I could. For a while now, I've been painfully aware of the lack of touch in my life. I read a study once that found that 5 hugs a day improved your mental/emotional health. If that's the case, I'm chronically and dangerously deficient. I think I've probably received 5 hugs in the past month...maybe I've had a few more, but I'm pretty sure the number's in the single digits.

I suppose it doesn't matter too much, though. As the title of this post suggests, it would just be symptom management. While pain may be an immediate concern, it is a symptom of a much deeper problem, and until I treat that problem at the source, I can never be truly rid of it. I will admit, I am at least closer to identifying the source, which is necessary in order to treat it. It makes it possible for me to utilize interventions that treat my problems on a much grander scale. However, as any good nurse knows, if you want a patient to be able to participate in the activities necessary for treatment, you must administer analgesics before the activity is performed. So, while I need to treat the problem at its source, my pain must be managed so that I am able to take the steps necessary for therapy and rehabilitation. I can't participate in my treatment unless my pain is under control. So, I guess I must develop a better, more complete pain management regimen so I can begin to incorporate more invasive treatments into my care plan.

In closing, it's interesting to analyze your own serve as both nurse and patient (obviously under the Great Physician, if you will)'s interesting, to say the least.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

What Lies Beneath

If you've talked to me in the past week, I may have mentioned to you that I'm feeling unstable. I may have told you that I'm experiencing some emotional turmoil, though I'm trying to keep it under the surface. I may have told you that I can't quite pinpoint what's bothering, that there are a ton of surface things that have contributed to my stress, but that none of them is actually at the root of the problem.

After talking to a friend earlier this week, I realized, in fact, that there are a good number of deeper issues that I need to deal with. The problem is, I've never dealt with them because I don't want to. I've labeled them as trivial concerns and ignored them. I've never really acknowledged them as issues, or taken the time to think much about them. For some of them, I've spent years blaming myself. For others, I've written them off as a "normal" part of growing up, or as "trivial" in comparison to the experiences of others. I've always figured I have nothing to complain about, really. I mean, a lot of people have had it a lot worse. Apparently, there's a fine line between keeping things in perspective when sympathizing with others and living in denial. I've tried to just leave my issues behind me. However, your past influences who you are. So, despite my denial of those issues, they continue to haunt me.

I'm frustrated with it, really. I mean, I know that as long as the issues of my past remain secrets, they will continue to spawn lies -- lies that get in the way of me realizing who I am and what I am capable of, lies that paralyze me. It's frustrating because I had always hoped that mentioning that some crappy stuff occurred in my past would suffice, that it would free me from the grip of that shame and guilt, but that is definitely not the case. Lately, I've been nearly paralyzed by shame and guilt and fear and insecurities. By paralyzed, I mean that I've been so aware of the pain and frustration and lies, but that I've been so overcome with shame and guilt and fear and insecurities that I've been afraid to talk about them with anyone. It's been horrible because I can't work through anything unless I can tell someone. I mean, I could start with journaling or blogging or something, but trust me...I know how I operate...I need to flat out tell someone so I can hear them respond because if I'm left to sort through things in my own mind, it doesn't take long before I start justifying things and telling myself lies all over again. Similarly, I can't talk with a counselor, or if there is one I can talk to, I haven't found them. You see, first of all, I don't trust people with secrets real quickly unless I believe they genuinely care about me. I have not found that characteristic in a counselor. I mean, I'm not saying my counselors were cold or's just, they didn't know me...they couldn't understand, and so often I felt like they weren't listening. I'd talk about not being able to sleep and they'd ask if I wanted pills for that...I don't want any pills! I hate drugs! I hate the thought of sleeping pills! I don't have enough time for sleeping pills! There are days when I wouldn't trust myself with sleeping pills! (sorry, I know that was scary, creepiness.) Someone who truly knew me would know that I need a hug, not a pill...that a goodnight and a "Takara, I love you. Get some sleep." would help...not that it would solve the problems that were keeping me up, but it would at least make me feel secure and less alone in all of it so that I could sleep. Seriously, how am I supposed to get anything out of confiding in someone who doesn't know can I trust them with my crazy when the only reason I know they won't ditch me is because they're getting paid not to? How is that supposed to make me trust them? That and the last counselor I had...she gave me plenty of suggestions/homework, but they weren't practical for me...I felt like she wasn't listening to me...she wasn't putting my problems and issues into the context of who I am and where I'm from...she couldn't grasp why I didn't feel like I could bring this crap up to my mom this summer...she didn't get why I felt like I had to take on the problems of the world...and she didn't want to discuss where these messed up ideas and lies came from...she just wanted to see me change, but I've been trying to change for years. That's what I've always done. I've covered up the crazy and the flawed as best as I could, but if I don't deal with it, it'll always lurk there under the surface waiting to rear its ugly head. I will always be lying in some way -- to myself or others -- if I don't get it out there and make all of me mesh. I just can't do that.

The issues that lie beneath the persona I try to put out there cause me so much pain. Some of the pain comes from remembering how much it hurt at the time. Some of the pain is from feeling like it has to be a secret in order to keep my friends and to keep my life together. Some of the pain is from keeping it a secret, locked up tight in some dark corner of my soul. Some of the pain is from the anxious feeling I get when a joke or comment or classroom lecture mentions one of my "issues" and I swear that everyone can tell that the comment/lecture/joke could easily be about me. I swear that everyone knows that I'm hiding it and is judging me. I know that's not true, but when I hear the mere mention...I feel like a turtle, except I only wish I had a shell to hide in. But then again, other time, the pain is because I know that the person making the joke or comment, or possibly even the one giving the lecture, doesn't really understand. I want to stand up and scream, "You just don't get it! You don't know what it feels like! Yeah, it sounds ridiculous to you. Like, how could anyone get wrapped up in that mindset, but it's not as easy to escape as you think! I'm not stupid! I'm not weak! I'm strong for getting through, and you don't get that...You don't know that it's a battle that you can't win! You don't know what it's like to feel that trapped -- to feel like you have no way out and no hope of ever getting out! It's a dark and terrible situation to be in and you should never make light of it because it's not funny! Your laughter makes me feel like I'm trapped there all over again! Your laughter crushes my spirit!" (I realize that that little rant made it sound like I totally get that the stuff I dealt with was a big deal....but yeah...that's not what it just means that I know that I did hurt a lot and still do...) Sometimes, the pain is from feeling all alone. I know that I always have Jesus, and trust me, He and I are pretty tight because of all this. Yet, it hurts...because there are days where I feel beat and trapped and too exhausted from crying or from arguing with myself over all of these lies...and I feel too tired to take it to Jesus, to drag myself to His feet...I feel to weak and to broken...and I believe that that's why God gave us help us to carry our burdens and ourselves to Jesus's feet...that's why it hurts to feel all alone in this...because some days, I can do my part, and some days, I need someone to lean on...

That's all I've got tonight...but I can promise you, it all stays true to the title of my blog (if you're reading this on facebook, I'm referring to my actual webpage on blogspot) is "From the Heart"...I feel like I bled all over the keyboard (I didn't really, I swear). It's crazy...these things catch up to me late at night...well...sometime after seems the longer I'm awake, the more they gain on, if you one of the unfortunate souls that routinely sees me in the PM, I'm sorry that I've been either moody, sensitive, or some form of excessively/forcibly happy (I was over-compensating)...It's getting better, probably because I'm slowly managing to put it all away again...but hopefully, someday soon, I'll be able to get out from under this for a little while and be genuinely pleasant to be around, wouldn't that be trippy? Heck, maybe I'll even manage to honest to God cheer you up or take care of you in some way...or maybe, I'll be able to just co-exist without being a spaz...we'll see...just, while I'm trying to figure out how to work through things and who I can confide them in, please be patient with me.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

My bad. I lost my cover-up.

Right, so I totally left my cover-up at camp. Or at least, I went to camp with my cover-up, put it on every morning, but did not come home with it. It sucked because all this week, I haven't been able to cover up the zits on my face or heal them (I use a blemish healing concealer). Anyway, I finally bought some new cover-up Friday, but I feel like it's too little too late. I mean, I dealt with people all week without it. I dressed up and dressed down and did clinical and presentations without my cover-up. By the time I had some, it seemed ridiculous. I mean, I put some on Friday afternoon, but I couldn't figure out what the point even was. Everyone had seen those blemishes all week, surely they'd know I covered them up. Heck, I'd had most of my interactions for the week, I was just gonna be chilling all weekend, why even bother? Well, I can't say I answered that question really, but I did put my cover-up on. I told myself I did it for myself. I wanted to look good for myself. I wanted to look presentable and polished and put together for once this week. I still felt like it was pointless, but I figured it might make me feel a little better, and I suppose it did for a while until my tears washed it away...again.

Worst part is that I could write a beautifully parallel paragraph about my emotional cover-up -- the wall I like to hide behind -- the wall that guards me...Somehow, I lost that at camp as well. Granted, it was generally compromised by the end of any given day in the weeks leading up to that trip to camp, but still, it wasn't truly absent until after camp. I'm not sure if it's because being at camp for the weekend reminded me of a lot of the things I love and miss -- passions that I'm not pursuing -- or if it's because I had some truly amazing conversations at camp. Some of those conversations were thought-provoking and lead to a re-examination of aspects of my life. Other conversations were very honest. They caused me to share thoughts and feelings and parts of myself that I generally keep locked up. The interesting thing is that I felt a lot more relaxed and a lot more secure when I got back from camp...overall. However, be it lies swirling in my head or deeper concerns I refuse to deal with, I've felt very unstable this week. I've felt like I'm feebly covering up a desire to break down. I've felt like I'm showcasing each and every one of my faults in turn. I feel vulnerable and fragile and emotionally unstable. I feel like I'm a danger to myself and others, and I mean that in a generally emotional/spiritual sort of way. I've wanted so badly to run and hide this past week, to hole myself up in my room and just cry and sleep, only leaving for class and food. However, I've tried to fight that urge. I've forced myself to go out and leave the apartment, to be around people (though admittedly not large numbers of them and generally not for extended periods of time). I've forced myself to be vaguely social, though I felt horrified the whole time and was fighting a strong urge to bail. I do apologize to those of you reading this that had to be one of my confidants this week, one of the people that I identified as safe. Hopefully, you are flattered in some way that I feel safe around you (or at least safe enough to be a little unstable and trust I won't get cut down) and that I find you somewhat calming (whether I was just feeding off your testosterone or your joy or whatever you brought to the table). Yet, I'm still sorry. I feel like a tremendous nuisance, like I took up too much of your time, was too much of a pest, and dampened your week by being your own personal rain cloud. Hopefully, you can forgive me. I know I've been bitter, jaded, and prickly this week. I haven't been of much use to any of you. I've been inept at caring and comforting and loving you. It's ironic because I feel like I've been cold and uncaring while I felt so vulnerable and mushy. I guess that's what happens when you viciously try to protect your soft parts. I don't know. This probably stopped making sense a long time ago. It probably isn't even serving its intended purpose anymore.

I meant to apologize to all of you for being such a train wreck. I meant to explain, albeit minimally, why I seemed so disconnected and unstable this past week. I meant to warn you that I'm not over the funk I've been in. I meant to tell you that I'd try to stay out of your hair.

The problem is I meant to convey all that in some witty, whimsical as not to have this be to heavy or unwieldy or labored. I didn't want this to sound like I was trying to throw a pity party for myself, though I know that's probably what it sounds like...but at this point...I don't know how to fix it...maybe I'll get back from clinical tomorrow and decide that this blog serves no purpose and did more harm than good and delete it...maybe I won't who's to say? Just please, understand that this was hard to write...because it involved honesty and's not a commentary on the world, it's a statement of my present state of mind/feeling...and my musings about the trouble it may have caused those I love. Honestly, if you feel I had no place posting this, keep that opinion to yourself...this is my personal way of trying to fight through the funky, depressing feelings I'm experiencing by making a feeble attempt to reach out and expose the problem (though with a dim light) instead of cutting myself off from everyone and withdrawing from the world to muddle through it on my own.