When talking about fears and feelings, these are the ones that reach in and strangle me. To dull the ache, I remind myself this is just the way my life works. I suck it up and keep moving simply because there is no other choice being offered. I'm a victim to life. I start getting mad because I'm being a ninnie. I shove myself around until I get back to some arbitrary functional measurement. In time, I can ignore the feelings long enough for them to be reabsorbed. Once they are buried again, their teeth don't hurt so much.
This time is different. I'm not being allowed to shut up and push myself back to where I was. I didn't ask to change this pattern, but a few things changed when I wasn't looking. First I started writing. I've always kept a private journal. But it is for me in the moment. Even there I tend to record happy or angry moments. There isn't a lot of the in between. I don't write about the painful middle when I'm not taking action. Yesterday I wrote about that moment.
Second, I asked my husband to let me lose my temper and get mad. It sounds strange, but I haven't let that happen in years. Not externally. It wasn't my husband's fault that I suppressed all the negative emotions. I just didn't want to fight. Between babies and work and life, I didn't have the energy to deal with the intensity of those emotions. I put a cap on my temper and sadness and frantic energy. It was draining, but it wasn't as draining as I thought dealing with being out of control would be. So I utilized the same skills I leverage at work to distance myself at home. It worked in that we didn't fight.
And then it didn't. I came up with a big goal. That goal is sapping time and energy from maintaining my cool. It's requiring me to dig deeper and reorganize my life and my comforting patterns. I'm getting mad. At myself. At my family. At my life. I've caught myself lashing out against the people who love me the most. And I'm sad and tired too much of the time. Everything is out of whack and I'm not handling it well. I'm not happy with myself. Again.
"If it is okay for you to beat yourself up, it becomes okay for you to beat up everyone around you. It's not okay."These words have echoed in my head for days now. Following my last outburst, I was told that I was loved and everything was fine, but the lashing out was not okay. It might be tolerated and part of the process, but I need to be aware of it and be working on it. Because it was not okay to treat anyone that way. It was particularly not okay to treat myself that way.
Love yourself. Nurture yourself. Understand yourself. It takes time. And patience. And precious energy. I'm not going to continue my wallow. But I'm not going to stomp on myself this time. This is a process. A long one. I'm in a low and that is okay. I can already see changes happening. I've been here before and the days will lighten up again. While it lasts, I can be patient and give myself a chance to sort through some of the baggage of a dark day. If I take the chance now, maybe there will be a little less there the next time I find myself in this place.