Self – part 1

I have been mulling over many different and personal topics about myself, but I never see a worth in putting those “things” into actual words. My mind is so full of baggage right now and I need to free up some valuable space in my head.

We all hold onto shit that we shouldn’t. Maybe a comment made by an acquaintance, or a co-worker that really shouldn’t matter, sometimes hits hard. I find this to be especially true when I am already feeling vulnerable and when I’m doing all I can to keep my shit together on a daily basis.

I will make this disclaimer on any and all posts titled Self. I do not know many of my followers personally, but I do know some. And all of the followers I know are from different realms of my life. If you feel you may be uncomfortable reading personal stuff – STOP HERE. If not – let’s go.

When I think about myself, I always try and see what others may see or think about me. Is it wrong? Yep, but we all do it. At least I think we all do it and if you don’t – I commend you and give you the biggest high five EVER. So, I ask myself – what’s the first thing that pops into my mind that describes me? FAT. Fat is the only word that pops into my head and it’s flashing on a giant marquee shining bright for all to see and it’s flashing directly above my head. Why? I dunno. I have chatted about this topic numerous times in various ways. I’m going to attempt to break it down, for me and you.

foodhappy foodcomfort foodhappy foodcomfort foodhappy foodcomfort you get the picture. It has always been that for me.

Let’s take a stroll down memory lane, shall we? I honestly don’t remember tons from my very early childhood. Is that normal? I have no clue. If I try to think back, I get bits and pieces of different stuff. One memory that kinda starts my love/hate relationship with food is being at my great-grandmother’s house over the summer. She was my person, my Nana. Mom worked full-time so when summer vacation came, I was dropped off at Nana’s each weekday morning. My sister was dropped off at our grandparents house. This is where and when I started to realize families had favorites. The grandparents house was much different than Nana’s house. At the grandparents house things were…..sterile and unemotional. My sister was their princess. Another family fact I realized very early. She was/is beautiful, smart, thin, great hair, great skin, etc. Nana’s house was for me was learning how to scrub a kitchen floor on your hands and knees. Learning the feel of making pie dough from scratch, the smell when a cake is almost finished baking. Nana’s house was food and comfort. I know Nana saw the favoritism, I know Nana felt sad for me, I know Nana loved me unconditionally and that is why Nana fed me and hugged me and kissed my cheek. Now, in no way am I blaming Nana for my weight at any point in my life. There were numerous other adults that played a part. It’s kinda like the family was divided (even though it is a tiny family). One side was my sister’s “people” and one side was my “people”. And like kids do, my sister and I each played our role.

I was absolutely a chunky kid. No doubt about it. But when your older sister is a bean pole, even a slightly chunky younger sister sticks out like a sore thumb. I would say I was average through high school years, maybe a few pounds shy of above average. Remember, I’m talking the 80’s. Typically only the “druggies” were stick thin, or the “goths”, but that could have been from all the black they wore. In my circle of friends I was again, average. Our group of friends shared clothing, although my mom hated when I shared clothing because it would inevitably come back damaged in some way. But whatever!

I remember I always felt that I had to or at least wanted to have a boyfriend or someone that was interested. Didn’t matter who they were, what social group they were from, as long as I felt that someone……….accepted me. Yes, very pathetic. If I had all the time back that was spent trying to do things and look a certain way or act a certain way to get noticed, I could have been an all A student! Midway through my junior year in high school I met the boy that would become my husband and my soulmate. He actually liked ME, not a friend, not my sister, but ME. He was quite and shy, I was not. He was inexperienced, I was not. He was skinny, I was not. He made me happy, he still does most of the time. BUT, let’s not forget what my brain and happiness equals………….FOOD!

We had a totally fun filled dating life. Did all the stuff teenagers do. Went to the mall, we ate. Went to the movies, we ate. Went out with friends, we ate. We stayed home, we ate. He didn’t judge me, he didn’t mock me. He just loved me and we ate.

As the years went by, my weight steadily increased. I can’t sit here today and put my finger on exactly why it did, but it did. I was active, we were always doing something. I just don’t know.

We were married in 1991. I was 21, he was 22. First baby boy in 1993, second baby boy in 1996 and surprise baby girl in 2000. And yes, with each pregnancy came higher numbers on the scale. There was also TONS of family drama and fighting through those years. His family, my family. It was absolutely crazy. But we know what makes drama and fighting better (say it with me) FOOD! Yes, of course FOOD! The sweeter the better, the bigger the better!

I will say that through the late 1990’s and into the 2000’s I tried numerous different diets. I tried Weight Watchers, Deal-a-Meal, I went to Jazzercise classes. I would always manage to lose about 50 pounds and everything stopped dead. I would continue to try for a bit and then become hopeless and turn back to my good old friend – food.

Then I started to hear talk about weight loss surgery. I stuck my nose up at it; no way would I ever consider that. That’s for other people, not me. Or at least that’s what I told myself.

December 19, 2011, I had gastric bypass surgery. I went through the 6+ months of classes. Learned more than I could ever hope to learn about food and nutrition. I was so very fortunate to find a absolutely phenomenal weight loss group and surgeon. I followed every rule and guideline before and after surgery. I was proud of myself for a change, and that is very hard for me to say. But let’s talk numbers. That’s what we are all judge by – numbers. Our age, weight, clothing size, credit score, year of our car, cost of our house, etc.

When I actually had the surgery I was 305 pounds. I was morbidly obese. At my absolute lowest weight, I was 150. That was about 2-3 years after surgery. That was an impossible weight for me to maintain. I felt awful and did not look healthy. I know that’s a great excuse to gain weight, but it was true. I held fast at 165-175 for the next like 3 years. And then the numbers started climbing. I will not use my girl child problems as an excuse, I will say those issues certainly didn’t help. I stopped taking care of me and devoted time and energy to her. I will NOT ever regret doing that. I still don’t.

I am ultimately the only person that controls what goes into my body. I learned a new lifestyle in 2011 and I need to find it again and embrace it. I am currently holding around the 200 pound mark. It makes me cringe, it makes me feel like giving up, it makes me feel like a failure.

I have recently started to change some stuff. My husband and I got bikes, like the hybrid ones. There is a great rail-to-trail in our town. We went on three bike rides, increasing the distance a little each time. The third ride was 8 miles, we rode four miles out and turned around. One minor problem. Lady luck was not on my side. I honestly have the rhythm of the Jackson 5. I can dance, like really dance. My balance is another story. As we are turning around, we are also stopping for a water break. After all, we just rode 4 miles in the blazing sun and 90 degree heat! I have no clue what happened, but I am fairly sure my shoelace got stuck in the pedal and as I tried to get off the bike I kinda got thrown. Landed on both knees and my right elbow. I rolled to my back, arms up and told my hubby to help me up. He did. We had some water and I got back on the bike. He asked me about a million times if I was sure I wanted to continue, of course I didn’t want to continue but I NEEDED to continue! So I rode the 4 miles back to our car with blood running down both legs and my arm. I did notice my right shoulder getting stiff. I thought I might have jammed it or something and was seriously contemplating asking my hubby to give it a good yank to get it back in place. Glad I didn’t do that.

By the next morning I could barely move my arm. I was freaked. I drove to a local Orthopedic Urgent Care. X-rays were taken, physical exam completed. I have a fracture of some outer bone on my shoulder and the doc felt sure a “traumatic rotator cuff injury”. He never actually said the word surgery in my presence, but mentioned it would most likely need to be fixed. He ordered an MRI and set me up with an orthopedic doc in my town to follow up with. I go to my orthopedic doc tomorrow afternoon and got my MRI results today. I’m not a doctor, but words like “moderate full-size thickness tear” was used numerous times. I am assuming it is either the rotator cuff or other tendons. I decided not to be a Google doctor and wait until I see the professional tomorrow. Does my arm/shoulder hurt – YES. It is sore and feels heavy and gets very tired and achy. It sucks. Surgery will suck worse, but if it has to be, let’s get this shit going. I want to get back on the bike and feel proud for riding and not want to shove a donut in my face because I rode 8 miles!

Now, there is obviously stuff I let out. Not on purpose, just because gastric bypass surgery is very involved. During my recovery I started on liquids only and moved slowly through each phase of food. I exercised regularly. I will not say religiously because I think I had a good handle on what I could handle and what my body could handle. It had an effect on my relationships with friends and family. But please know that I am an open book when it comes to weight loss surgery. If you have questions, ask. I will answer honestly.

Thank you for reading. This is my therapy for the time being. Thinking about the possibility of surgery, recovery, not working and no paycheck, a new baby blessing our family in October, my girl child and her mental health journey (oh, she now has a dual diagnosis of Borderline Personality Disorder and Bipolar Disorder), the COVID crisis, the racial crisis, things are just so fucked up people! Where’s the food???????????????????????????? Just kidding, I hope.

I don’t know

I just don’t know anymore. I don’t want to stress anymore. I don’t want to worry anymore. I don’t want to care anymore. I just don’t want to anymore.

My girl went to her therapy yesterday. It was the first in-person session with her therapist since the virus. She also had her first group therapy. I will admit I was very worried that she would not go. I will also admit I was very scared that if she did not go, I would have to do something about it. I’m not sure what, but something would have had to happen. While my logical brain tells me it’s time for her to leave, my emotional mom mind tells me that is the worst possible thing at this point. And there really is no in-between, at least as I see it.

Back to the therapy. We, me and my husband, were sitting outside when our girl got home. It was later in the evening and she was hungry so she went in the house to get some food. She came back out and I began asking about how things went. It is a very slow process to get her to talk at times and I know I’m not always getting “the full story” so to speak. She didn’t seem overly thrilled about either the individual or the group therapy. She told me she promised her therapist she would commit to three months of the individual/group therapy. She promised not to go ghost. One thing that seemed to especially annoy her about the group part, is that the participants are not allowed to engage in any personal contact. She said it could create drama in the group and what if two people in the group are in crisis mode at the same? I won’t pretend to completely understand all of it. I get that they don’t want or need additional drama in a therapy setting. I don’t completely understand not being able to talk with someone that has been in the group therapy for support. But I’m not a therapist, so what do I know.

As we were talking drippy came up in conversation many times; many, many, many times. The short version is she wants us (mom & dad) to try again to have some type of relationship with drippy. According to my girl, drippy also wants this. Now, she also said she knows that he is not “ready” to try again at this point. I wish I could have recorded the conversation so I could go back and replay what was said. There was no fighting or arguing. I have said before that I refuse to do that with her, but she did not get mean, nasty and she didn’t shut down. Conversation went from therapy to drippy, back to therapy, to life in general.

My girl has a thought in her mind that since she is now 20 she should be at a different point in life. She should be independent, not relying on mom & dad for everything, have money for a car and an apartment and living expenses. I talked again about looking into in-patient places. Like actually look at them, not just talk about them. She gave the typical reasons why she didn’t think she wanted to do that. Family and missing the babies that we have been blessed with, leaving therapy and still having nothing because she can’t work and make money (still not sure where this money thing is coming from – but I have my ideas). I countered each reason the best why I could. I just really want her to consider it.

The conversations that dealt with drippy were the hardest. She wants our approval to be with him, she wants him to be included, she wants to talk about him with us. I don’t know how to deal with that. HE BEAT HER. She defends him and she admitted she knows she does. She said we only know the bad about him and their relationship because that is all she has shared. She wants to talk to us about the good parts, how he treats her (?), how he is what she needs right now and she wants him in her life. She reiterated these thoughts and feelings quite a few times and I don’t know what the fuck to do about it. Right now drippy is holding the trump card, and it’s a red ace of hearts – he has my girls heart whether we like it or not. I don’t mean to make it sound like this is a game and my girl is the prize. It’s just the best way I can explain a really shitty situation. I am scared what this will mean for the future. I am scared choices will have to be made and none of the choices are good. I am scared that the immediate family will pull away from her, more than they already are.

And this is why I just don’t know anymore.

Let’s play a game…

Everyone likes games, right? Play the what if game with me. It’s a game my mind likes to play at 2AM when I need sleep. A game that I play as I cry in the shower. A game that makes my heart race and my blood pressure rise. A game that I play everyday, whether I want to or not.

What if – my girl tells me she’s going to point A (a friends) but really goes to point D (drippy dick)? And I have no idea where she is or how to help her if she gets in trouble.

What if – I tell my girl that I feel very little joy in my life, and her disorder is to blame?

What if – I tell my girl I can’t stand being in the house with her?

What if – I tell my girl I feel I am walking on eggshells all the time?

What if – I tell my girl I want my life back?

What if – I tell my girl I’m allowed to feel happy, sometimes?

What if – I tell my girl that my world has to stop revolving around her?

What if – I tell my girl I am becoming sad and depressed, too?

What if – I tell my girl I am not looking forward to a week vacation with her along?

What if – my girl keeps lying?

What if – my girl never knows happiness in her life?

What if – the drug of choice gets stronger and scarier?

What if – I tell my girl she has to decide if she is living here or with drippy?

What if – my girl decides to live with drippy and gets beat, again?

What if – my girl doesn’t go to therapy tomorrow (for the third time in a row)?

What if – my girl continues to cut her arms and now her thighs?

What if – one of those cuts hits just the right spot?

What if – things never change?

What if – I finally unload all this on my girl and all my feelings and thoughts come pouring out of my mouth and I can’t stop them?

What if – my honesty pushes my girl over the edge?

What if – my girl can’t handle my truth?

What if – those are the last words I ever get to say to my girl?

What if, what if, what if, what if?

What if is a fucked up game to play.

yadda yadda yadda

Here I am again. Same shit, different day. I want to not care, but I can’t. I want to say fuck it, but I can’t.

Sunday evening we (me, my hubby, and two close friends) were at a local outdoor watering hole. My girl was working and scheduled to work until 6PM. Around 4:30PM, I got an alert from one of the house cameras. I checked and there was my girl going into the house……….hmmmmmmmmmmm. And then I get a text from her, “where are you”, just as I am sending a text to her “why are you home?” Her response is that she is going to drippy dick’s house for the night and on Monday morning they are leaving for the beach, but she will be back Wednesday sometime and it’s not just the two of them his whole family is going. I’m sorry – WHAT? And she is gone. I have no clue what/where she is or who she is actually with. But I now know why she did wash, why she was trying to find a bathing suit and why she laid out in the sun one day last week. It was all prep work for her little vacay with drippy dick.

Hope she is having a great time and enjoying her time away. I know I am having a blast worrying myself sick and not sleeping.

A picture

A picture is worth 1,000 words, a picture tells a story, a picture evokes emotions.

This picture speaks to me in so many ways. He has no idea how many times I look at his hands. I have held this hand thousands of times. I see strength and I feel safety. I see love and I feel tenderness. I see hard work and I feel cared for. When his hand rests on the small of my back I feel proud to be the one he chose.

Reality

This is my daily reality. My beautiful girl child has Borderline Personality Disorder. This is what it looks like.

Self harm and this was a mild one

It’s 2020. People dealing with mental health issues are not getting the proper help. I can’t help my own child. It is devastating. It is sad. It is scary.

deja vu

It’s here again, the cycle. My girls never ending cycle of ups and downs, love and hate, happy and sad, but never safe.

Last week, drippy dick had a court appearance of some kind for the charges that were filed against him. As a reminder, after drippy beat my daughter he decided to drive her home out of the kindness of his heart. On the way they continued to verbally fight with each other and he stopped at a Burger King and told her to get out of his car. She got her shit out of the car and went into the restaurant. He ends up threatening the manager and stated something to the effect that he had a gun and is going to come back and shoot the place up. Threats continue to the manager and my girl, and she gets back in his car to stop the scene. Drippy was charged with Terroristic Threats, a felony 3 and Harassment, a misdemeanor 2. COVID-19 slowed everything court related until last week.

Last Tuesday my girl sent me a message that she had to go to court on Wednesday. I was confused because she was not subpoenaed. She said she had to be there to support him. Right.

She didn’t come home until Thursday evening and was very quiet. I knew questioning her would set her off so I decided to text her….I am the green box and please excuse the mistakes, I was not in the best frame of mind.

So, basically she is going to go and support the person who beat her prior to this incident. Will she be called to testify? I have no clue. Will she lie if she is called? Yes.

She has now missed two therapy appointments in a row. For some reason the missed appointment calls come to my cell phone. The appointments (which are still being handled over the phone) are scheduled for every Wednesday. I asked her the last two weeks how the appointments went and she said fine. Here comes the cycle.

Today, just about an hour ago, I am at work and I get a Facebook message…..I am pink, my girl has her face…

I leave work, drive home not knowing what will be waiting for me. He has access to her facebook messenger, again. Is it for real? Is he being an asshole? I have no way of knowing. My mind is crazy with thoughts of what I will find when I get home, will she be willing to get help this time, so many thoughts. She is in her room, tear stained face. She tells me she is fine. I ask to see her arms, she won’t show me. I ask what’s going on. She answers nothing. I ask again about her arms. She won’t show me. This back and forth goes on for about 10 minutes. She tells me to go back to work. She just stares at her laptop screen and pretends she is watching Netflix. I eventually walk out.

I am constantly worried. I worry constantly. I stress constantly. I think I can handle it. I think I can handle everything. I think I can be Wonder Woman. I pacify myself with food. Food makes it better. Food fixes everything. Food takes the pain away. I harm myself with food, my girl harms herself with razors and scissors.

There will be another bomb exploding soon. The bombs are coming closer together. Her bombs create craters that I am constantly stuck in. She’s fine, I’m fine, everything is fine.

Just a typical Saturday

Just another typical Saturday. I have the timer on my phone set so I can get the towels hung up on the wash-line as soon as they are finished. The sheets and blankets are already out and drying. Who doesn’t love the smell of sheets and towels that have been hanging outside for hours?

Just another typical Saturday. The sound of the neighborhood is the background noise. Lawn mowers, power washers (shit, I have to remember to get the power washer from my parents – note to self), darks barking, and kids laughing.

Just another typical Saturday. My girl child told me yesterday she doesn’t have the fight to live anymore. She wants to give back the life I gave her. She doesn’t want it. She is tired, so very tired of fighting. She is so very tired of pretending everyday is just another typical day.

I can’t explain what that does to me. She is sitting in front of me baring her soul to me. Telling me her truest feelings and emotions. And all I can do is sit and listen. We talk about options. The only real option is signing herself into the hospital, again. She decided to call her current therapist and talk to her about what some options might be or what the therapist might suggest. She called, the office is closed on Friday due to COVID-19. She doesn’t get a call back . We talk about the hospital still being an option or if she feels she will be safe at home, wait until Monday and see what the therapist has to say. We are open and honest with each other in the fact that if she goes into the hospital on a Friday night, nothing will be done or put into motion until Monday morning anyway. However, my concern is will she be safe. She told me she doesn’t have a plan to end her life and doesn’t feel like she will do anything stupid right now – but she feels it is coming to that. She admitted she is pushing us away because it would make it easier for her to leave. She wouldn’t feel as guilty if she didn’t think we cared or if she pushed hard enough for us to give up on her.

My girl feels lost and hopeless. I feel lost and hopeless. She told me the only reason she is still alive is because of me and her dad and her niece. She is not alive for herself. Wow. Think about that. Seriously, think about that. Not having anything within your self or joy in your life. Remember, as you begin to judge her – she is fighting an invisible monster NO ONE can see, NO ONE can feel, NO ONE can imagine fighting. This is not a phase, this is not a “get over it” kind of situation. This is real. It is very, very real.

Am I being selfish with my girls life? Of course I don’t want her to end her life and not be in my world. But how much can one person take? How much can one person fight? When is it enough?

My timer went off.

Just a typical Saturday.

Love and food

Love equals food

Food equals comfort

Comfort equals love

Love can sabotage you

Love, food, and comfort equals fat

Fat equals self hatred

Fat equals thighs that touch, arms that flap, stomachs that roll and back fat.

It is a cycle I can’t break. But I feel like it is breaking me.