Try to do Too Much

(Written in October 2003)
I’m feeling so discouraged and defeated. I see how, when I was feeling better in the summer, I did the COA black & white thing “I’m all better now.” And so I immediately wanted to widen my life — to take workshops in counseling techniques etc — so I piled more stuff on myself as well as trying to get off the medication. I see now how foolish that was — I’ve lost ground so badly — I’m back in the place where it’s too hard just to get up in the morning, just to keep up the normal schedule here at Neskaya. I’m very angry at myself for being so stupid. And I’m very disappointed because somewhere in me I want to have that wider life — to go to Jalaja’s workshop, the Windhorse training, visit Bobbi on Cape Cod. I can see better the cycle that Karen talked about, how when I’m in an upswing I pile on more & more instead of building in time for the down cycle and so I crash instead of coming down gently.
So discouraged. But at least I don’t feel as lost as I did yesterday. I didn’t do anything to try to bring myself out of it. I started the music for “Turning Toward the Morning” and did the dance to express my bleakness — but it helped. I look at my painting of the dancer that appeared when I surrendered to disappointment. That’s the sort of transformation that Greenspan talks about. I suppose if one could get skilled at allowing these emotions to move, it would not be so upsetting that they keep coming back again and again. I imagine/hope that I can be completely free of them — that’s what I thought last summer — Dave tried to warn me, but of course in the up place the downs don’t look like a big deal. Somehow I have to find a balance — enough little joys every day to strengthen me for the inevitable losses and disappointments.
OK. I don’t want to move and I need to go on with my day. There there Jenny, what you are doing is very hard. Courage my dear.

Breakfast, wash dishes, water plants, dance to Shoror. My heart aches so that it’s very hard to keep doing things, but now that I’ve stopped I’m feeling the fear again. There’s no place to rest, no place safe to be. It’s a beautiful day out there, autumn gold — intensified by mist earlier, and it doesn’t touch me, doesn’t lift my heart. I feel so bleak and dark inside, and I so love the beauty of the world and grieve that I’m unable to celebrate it.

Dear Spirits, I’m pretty bummed out. Please help me.
Dear Jenny, we think you should raise your meds back to 100. This is being altogether too hard for you. Medication is neither good nor bad, it is a way you can support yourself when other kinds of support aren’t available. There is no support for you in the culture and too much pressure in the opposite direction, not to mention all the COA stuff: judging yourself without mercy, making things too black and white, etc. Yes, if you lived in a therapeutic/spiritual community you might be able to get by on less medication, but that’s not a realistic option for you right now. Yes, go ahead and call the doctor.

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