Excerpts from my journal trying to understand about the terrified feeling, what triggered it, why it seemed different from how it has happened before. The last time I felt that kind of terror was when I flew to California for the Francis Weller workshop.
Tuesday, July 16
The cloud cover is thin, so the sun is watery when it’s out. It would be nice to sit on the porch, but I feel too fragile. I’ve begun to notice how much my behavior is restricted by the need to feel safe. That wasn’t true for a big part of my life. I wonder when it started? Possibly 1984 and the diagnosis of systemic yeast. Maybe it’s only since I started paying attention to inner signals. I’m reminded of the boundary exercise I did with Dave, where I let him right through my boundary and wouldn’t have noticed it if he hadn’t pointed it out.
Systemic yeast requires a very strict diet. I remember that I couldn’t drink black tea or herb teas. One tea that was “safe” was Kukicha Twig Tea. I wasn’t supposed to eat dairy food, so I used soy milk. For a long time Kukicha and soy felt safe to me. I actually forgot to take any on that trip to see my siblings, and was upset when I realized it.
The boundary exercise was with Dave Berger, an S.E. practitioner. He asked me to stop him when I wanted to and started walking toward me. When he was about 18″ away, I held up my hand. He said “It should have been back there,” and indicated a place about 3 feet further away. As soon as he moved his hand, I remembered that I had felt something when he was there, but I hadn’t paid attention to it, and would have totally forgotten it if he hadn’t pointed it out.
So tired. or bleak. or something. Brain is flat.
Talk with Erica:
tell Erica about seeing motive of needing to be safe
experiencing exhaustion —> despair in B.P.
Now that I’ve slept, I don’t feel physically exhausted but I do feel mentally exhausted.
Too scared to go out on porch this morning.
Now I’m becoming aware of something I wouldn’t have
Parts that were feeling scared weren’t listened to
either override it or become suicidal
That explains why my brain is refusing to work. Visit to B.P. was major OVERWHELM! and I’m shut down. How to reconnect with myself.
Wednesday, July 19
Raining. Thank God for Erica. She was a big help yesterday. Now I see that when my brain is blank and blunt, I’m in a state of hypo-arousal, I’ve been triggered by overwhelm, or by something inside that I’m not ready to face.
What was the problem with the visit to my siblings? Too quick, no time to settle in and reconnect. They all talk fast and loud. Mocha’s diarrhea exhausted me. I needed to have soul conversations, I needed to find out, as we are nearing the ending of our lives, what have those lives meant?
3rd cup of tea
If I’m too tired to make a decision, maybe that means I’m too tired to do anything. Can I sit here doing nothing? Just sit here? I feel a pull toward playing Solitaire and resist it. Typing journal doesn’t appeal. Maybe take the puzzle apart. I did manage to wash the dishes while my tea was brewing.
I could try 20 minutes of housekeeping and 20 minutes of sitting here doing literally nothing. I haven’t even unpacked my suitcase yet. I haven’t looked at the stuff that came from HUE. I would have to try things on. The discouraged part of me says trying things on is too uncomfortable.
It’s July 25 and I still haven’t unpacked or opened the package from HUE.
Something I can do with a whole heart? Often doing a blog post is whole-hearted.
The antidote to exhaustion is not rest, but doing something with a whole heart.
Thursday, July 18
So tired. I don’t know what to do about Dance Camp. It starts on Saturday and I can’t imagine being ready for it. I’m still finding it hard to get practical things done. I did manage to pay a bunch of bills yesterday (good for me!) and get them in the mail.
Yesterday my email stopped working.
Yesterday I was feeling so bad that I got out the Sweet Chestnut — “when you are overwhelmed with anguish and can see no way out.” I wonder if they would let me stop eating now, or if I have to have some serious disability.
Stopping eating is Plan B for dying.
Haven’t seen Dulany, she’s got her son & 2 granddaughters visiting. I won’t be talking to Erica on Friday, so I’m feeling a little bereft. Maybe that’s the problem.
I really do feel abandoned. Not having email working is a big deal.
I am realizing that I am terrified. It took me a while to feel it. But now it’s clearly “blind terror.”
Friday, July 19
Feeling a little better this morning. I saw Meredith last night. I was walking Mocha and she drove by in a car. I was able to tell her that I was scared. I think that helped a lot.
Erica said: Parts that were feeling scared weren’t listened to
I would either override it or become suicidal
I’m actually sitting out on the porch. It’s cool and clear. I could do without the roar of the fan. But I don’t feel too scared to sit out here. so something has shifted.
Sandy Pariseau came at 10:00. I don’t know if I knew I was scared when she was here — yes I think I must have. I think I even told her. I managed to fix the email by shutting down the computer and starting it again (good for me!) With her help I ordered another Canon printer just like the one I have.
Sandy comes to help me with computer stuff. In trying to decide which printer to get, I decided on the Canon which is just like the one I have that stopped working. Sandy said that wouldn’t have been her choice, but she supported me in making the right choice for me.
3rd cup of tea:
It’s interesting that it took me so long before I could feel that I was terrified. All I had was the blank blunt blind feeling, also feeling out of control. Maybe the first clue was not feeling safe to sit on my porch. I think of how I didn’t know I was frightened until Dr. Asher named it. I didn’t expect to be afraid, I have reasonably good relationships with all my siblings. So the fear didn’t make sense, so I didn’t feel it. Maybe Mocha picked up on it. Erica said something about when we all got together, especially in a family house, we all tended to regress. I think that house was where I first felt “that twilight feeling,” of my life fading into darkness, taking care of other people’s jobs, doing nothing of my own. Tho I have good memories of the porch, creating games for my siblings, that was also where the Colonial Dames happened.
Saturday, July 20
I’m feeling really lost. Really worried about how I’ll get to dance camp, how I’ll be at Pat’s, whether I can function at all. I’m feeling really abandoned by Dulany, which isn’t fair, because she’s just very sick, can’t seem to stop vomiting. I feel like I did a bad job of relating to my siblings and dealing with Mocha at B.P. I feel like I’m always scrambling to catch up with my life. It’s a lot like the car that drove away with me in my dreams when I was a child.
I see that the problem has something to do with following someone else’s rules. There’s a way in which the bureaucracy of government is a bit like dysfunctional parents. The rules are always changing, and the punishment is unimaginable. What am I afraid of? That if I fail to do something I’m supposed to do — what will happen?
Sandy said to remind myself that we had ordered a printer, and we had got the gmail working. I think I did finally relax a little — I didn’t relax right away — but a lot of the fear is still with me, and it’s the fear that cripples my mind.
I’m also feeling abandoned by the Spirit realm.
Reading through this, I can see much more clearly why I got so triggered into a baby state. I can also see that what brought me out of it were several things: one was simply telling people I was afraid and having them offer a hug, or sympathy & validation, instead of making me wrong. Another was working on blog posts. Yet another was actually being able to accomplish some things, like getting the email working.