I’m melancholy, but God knows I could be worse. Yesterday I had a very good session with my therapist and we talked about ways to control my panic attacks without resorting to having to take an ativan. It’s all about distorted (problematic) thinking, which I’m a pro at. Somehow I just need to remind myself that it is distorted. Just because I can think it, doesn’t make it true.
I bought a small journal to carry with me. I’m going to try, the next time the feelings overwhelm me to do one of those “then what?” exercises to see if I can calm myself pretty quickly.
For example, I can be overwhelmed with the idea that I’ll be alone for the rest of my life. Then I ask, “If that happens, then what?”
I can answer, “Well, hopefully I’ll forge other relationships even if they’re not romantic.”
I can find other ways to have an impact on the world such as more volunteer work.
I might meet people with similar interests and values.
Well, anything could happen, really.
I know it seems simplistic, but hey, we are talking about the fight or flight instinct and that sucker is quick. My fight or flight instinct is unbelievably strong to the point where most would find it alarming. I guess that goes hand in hand with a tumultuous childhood.
My youngest stepdaughter (I can still call her that) called me on FaceTime today and I was really overjoyed that she did. For a while I thought I might not be able to face his daughters due to my shame, which makes no sense, I know. But I’m embarrassed at how easily their father disposed of me as though I have no value. At any rate we had a great conversation and I’m glad of it.
I ordered a huge tub of Red Vines and a box of Lucky Charms to be delivered to her for her birthday early next month, things they can’t easily buy in the UK that she loves. I pray she’ll always be in my life. She’s a pure soul.
Speaking of souls, I also met with the priest from my church. I feel funny saying “my church” but I’m going to keep saying it until it doesn’t feel funny anymore. He is a kind man in his early thirties with a young family. I really liked him and the church the first time I went there almost two years ago; I had no desire to try other churches.
Twice a month they feed hungry people at the church on Saturday mornings and I told him I would like to help with that if needed. He gave me the name and telephone number of the woman who organizes it so I’m hoping to hear from her next week.
I asked what’s required of becoming a member of a church. He said, attending church with regularity, giving what you are able to give to support the church so that it can continue to do good work for the community, being involved with a ministry that serves people, i.e., the saturday breakfast. He said he is unaware of how much money his partitioners give. He knows the grand total at the end of the month, but not who is giving what. I thought that was good to know. I told him right now I can only offer $5 a week and he said that was great.
He sat with his hand on his heart as I told him my tale. I told him how I’ve struggled with religion, about my history of suicide attempts, and my husband cheating and abandoning me. He’s such a sweet man I didn’t really want to overwhelm hin. Hopefully he’s heard worse stories!
All I know is it feels like a good fit. I’m reaching out to people and that is not easy for me. It will pay off. It already has.
I spent the morning taking photos of items I want to put on eBay and then putting the stuff in bins and cleaning the house for my mom. I can hardly move in my bedroom, but the rest of the house looks great. I feel guilty that she’s ending up with company here (a niece and nephew and their partners) that came together sort of at the last minute while I’ll be driving to Portland to spend the night with my daughter. I can’t wait to be with her but I do have guilt pangs that I won’t be here helping my mom – although she’s just making homemade mac and cheese, not a turkey dinner! I just desperately need to get out of town and hang with my kid. I might even meet her boyfriend for the first time.
In the middle of the day I ran to the mall for the kids center and picked up the gifts that the public have bought so far for some of our kid clients who are underprivileged. There are people out there doing good. Those are the people I want to know. Not the people who think it’s a good idea to make their living by suing other people.
I hope that in the next several months something becomes clearer to me about which direction I should go in, and if I can handle working full time.
I’m trying to talk my husband into simplifying out agreement with one another to just split anything he or I get from the lawsuit in half, fifty-fifty. I told him they are marital assets and that’s how it should be. I hope he’ll agree and we can have it notarized and I can submit it with our divorce paperwork. Then I can begin to move on from him. I said, “Look, the sooner you agree, the sooner I’ll stop hounding you.”
We’ll see. I think in the end he’ll agree with that.
Happy Thanksgiving, everyone. No matter if you’re eating a full turkey dinner, mac and cheese, or Chinese food (as I plan to do). It’s a day to spend with people you love. I’ve always had a soft spot for Thanksgiving because it starts the Christmas season but the pressure of presents is absent. It’s more about being social and slowing down for a day.
Much love and peace.