Notifications

This is a Really Real Mental Health Post.

I’m an Inbox Zero kinda person.

The kinda person that can’t stand those little notification bubbles anywhere.

The kinda person that will leave someone one read just because I have to click on their message to make the notification bubble go away even if I don’t have the time or energy to respond right then.

Right now I have well over 300 unread emails in my gmail account.

Blog posts and important messages and not so important messages and advertisements.

Things I clear out and take care of the second they hit my account.

Right now they are backing up more and more and more.

I don’t really care.

I mean, I guess I do care, I’m in a state of functional depression. It’s not quite dragging me under but I can’t quite stay on top either. I keep dropping some of the balls I’m trying to juggle.

I’m making it to the gym and eating a healthy diet and getting to my appointments but ugh, do I really have to clean the house? Do I really have to take care of my email? Do I really feel like focusing on my blog? Do I really feel like taking care of every day mandatory self care stuff?

Just how mandatory is it?

Can I put that shower off just one more day?

I have phone calls I’ve needed to make. Benefits I really need to apply for.

I keep saying I’ll take care of that tomorrow.

Tomorrow.

Tomorrow.

I don’t think I realize how much depression is taking its toll on me until I type it out like this because really, I feel fine. I still feel like I’m finding joy in life, I guess. I’m not actually miserable. I don’t feel sad. I’m not crying.

Mostly I’m not suicidal.

But in between activities my bed keeps calling my name and I fight to stay out of it. Such a comforting nest of blankets to wrap myself in.

It’s funny how depression can hide itself in the middle of a seemingly typical mood.

But over 300 unread emails isn’t typical for me.

And right now I don’t really care.

 

Racing the Clock pt 2

This is a Really Real Mental Health Post.

I’m racing the clock again.

This time I’m supposed to be heading out the door to the gym with Bat Woman, which is the start of my long ass, exhausting, emotionally draining, Wednesday.

But I warned her I was running a few minutes late and she’ll wait for me.

Therapy yesterday was hard as I suspected.

But it was also easy.

The words flowed easily, but I kept trying to veer off topic onto other things and she had to keep bringing me back. As much as this is about me, it’s also about getting my needs met within my relationship which requires me speaking up about my needs.

And that is hard for me.

Speaking up about my needs could lead to conflict and I avoid conflict like the plague.

And I’m not sure how self worth and body image became yet another conversation about how much I need to speak up.

Another conversation about changing boundaries within a long term relationship.

Another conversation about things being wonderful and not quite right at the same time.

Another conversation about how it can be both and that is okay.

I’m really good at looking at the positive and stuffing my feelings, and my needs, and that works for a time.  Sometimes for a long time. And then things boil over and for days and days the feelings and the repressed needs seem to bubble up. This used to mean a pattern of a seemingly perfect life for weeks at a time followed by days or weeks of ugly fighting over and over again as I pointed out all of the things that were wrong.

And then I would go back to ignoring them and things would or wouldn’t change.

Yesterday Wonder Woman started crying because she felt like we’d had hard talks 3 days in a row. Like I’d gotten angry or frustrated or sad with her over something each day.

This is that pattern coming back again.  The benefit this time around is that there isn’t ugly fighting. I don’t scream and yell and nag and there isn’t passive aggressive bullshit while I work it out of my system.

But it’s still not fair to Wonder Woman.

And it’s not fair to me.

She gets blind sided, being told that things aren’t okay.  Being told that things I’d previously explicitly said were fine or even great, are very much not okay.

So, I still need to figure out what to do about not feeling wanted, and a lot of that is learning to love myself where I’m at, and also a big big part of it is just depression.

So, we didn’t focus on it a lot at therapy, and instead we focused on how much I need to speak up.

Therapy is always a love/hate relationship but I wouldn’t miss it for the world.

Racing the Clock

This is a Really Real Mental Health Post.

I’m racing the clock with this post.

It’s 14 minutes till therapy and that’s not counting the time it’ll take me to walk from the coffee shop, but I feel the need to get this out of my head before I walk into that office.

So I’m writing.

Today is going to be a hard session.

I know it.

I already know what we’re going to talk about, I’ve known since last night. It’s a hard topic but one I need to work on deeply.

Self worth.

I don’t feel wanted because I don’t feel deserving of that sort of affection. So even though Wonder Women shows me that sort of attention I don’t always see it.

Well, that’s not even it. I see it, but I don’t internalize it.

I see it as something she’s doing out of obligation. Something she’s doing because she has to. Not something she’s doing because she actually wants me or finds my body attractive.

I guess it isn’t self worth exactly.

It’s more body image, but not even that exactly. It’s so complicated.

I’ve lost 20 lbs in the last month (and before someone says that’s too much, my doctors are on board.  Noom is the shit and I highly recommend that program to anyone.). I feel like I’m becoming more attractive. I feel sexy, I feel sexual. But I don’t feel like anyone else could possibly see me that way.

Anyway, 3 minutes till therapy and I still have to walk to the building.  Guess I should get going.

Today’s session is going to be hard but needed.

I have a love/hate relationship with therapy.

Before and After

This is a Really Real Widow Post.

Today is that day.

The day that’s on the death certificate.

The day my new normal began.

For me, the 7th is always the hardest.  The 7th is the day the fight happened, the day she went to bed angry, the day I heard her take her meds, the day I went to bed on the couch. In my head, the 7th will always be the day she died.

The 8th is a day of quiet reflection.

In my head I see my house filling with paramedics and police. It plays out like a sick silent movie in front of me. I see their lips moving but there are no words.

The 8th is calm.

The 8th is when my new normal began.

I never would have chosen this.

I thought Parker was my Always and Forever, Forever and Always.

I never would have chosen this.

But I’m happy in my new normal, and as much as I want her back in this world, the best thing I can do for her is continue to live my best life.

Today Wonder Woman and I were going to go to the beach. It’s what we did last year and it was kind of perfect. The beach is my safe space.

But it’s a weekend and it’s beautiful out, which means everyone else is going to be at the beach, and I’m just not feeling that.

Today is a day of quiet reflection.

Instead we did some shopping for a few projects I’m working on, and I bought stuff to make a new recipe for dinner and we’re spending time together quietly around the house.

This is my new normal.

This morning when Wonder Woman took our pup out, she found a firefly sitting on a package that she was about to bring upstairs. She sent me a picture and let me know that Parker was trying to get inside.

While we were at the craft store she picked out a lantern and said I should make a firefly decal for the side and put a candle in it.

I love that she leaves space for Parker in our relationship. I don’t have to hide my grief. I don’t have to hide the love that didn’t die when Parker did.

This is my new normal.

I can’t believe it’s been 3 years while at the same time I can’t believe it’s only been 3 years. An eternity and an instant.

Today is that day.

I miss you my firefly.

Is That You?

This is a Really Real Widow Post.

Dear Parker,

Just typing those words brought tears to my eyes.

I can’t believe it’s been three years since I last heard your voice.

I can’t believe it’s been three years since I last saw you breathing.

You’ve missed too much.

Kidlet’s grown up now. He moved out to Seattle and lives with his girlfriend. You would be SO Fucking proud of the man he has become. He’s doing so much better than we ever did and I can only see him going further.

I’ve been fighting harder than we ever did when you were alive. That’s the one thing you gave to me by leaving. The will to go on. I realized what was at stake and I gave it everything. I’ve gotten so much healthier mentally and physically. As my favorite niece on your side would put it, I’ve pulled so many damn weeds and I’ve grown a lot of flowers in their place.

Speaking of my favorite niece on your side, you should see her now. She’s doing so well, but I’m sure she writes you her own letters. She’s such an amazing writer and her voice  . . oh, her voice. I can’t wait to attend her first major concert. She’s done so much work on herself since you’ve been gone.

There’s a firefly that’s been hanging out on my porch pretty much around the clock for the past week. Is that you? I don’t even know if I believe it could be you but the thing seems to be there every morning and every night when I take Siah out and it just won’t leave me alone, so maybe, just maybe . . .

I’m sorry that our last words were so hurtful. I’m sorry I was so angry. I’m sorry we went through so much and didn’t have any outlet except for each other. I wish I could take it all back.

And I wish you could have seen that it would get better. I wish you could be here to see the other side. I wish you wouldn’t have lost your battle with this soul sucking bullshit.

But I get it, I really do.

Sometimes I’m not sure how I keep going either.

I miss you, and I love you.

Time moves slowly

This is a Really Real Widow Post.

Tick-tock-tick-tock.

This week is moving so slowly.

Friday and Saturday will be three years but the time leading up to it drags forever. I just want to get to Sunday so Parker’s Deathday can pass and I can get on with living.

Last night I was so angry, and I know it was partially related to grief and widow bullshit and it wanted to direct itself at Sarah Jane even though she did nothing wrong. I felt the need to be a total bitch so I completely withdrew.

Eventually I sent her a message telling her why, but I still felt like shit for avoiding her all night.

And today I’m replaying my last day with Parker over and over in my head. It doesn’t help that I woke up thinking today was the 7th.

I wish it was so I could get that day over with.

When I relive that last day I’m reminded why I’m so afraid to get angry with people. So afraid to want help, so afraid to need someone to do more than they naturally want to do.

I just needed more help around the house but I didn’t know how to ask for it without it turning into a fight. And no matter how much I try to tell myself that the fight didn’t kill her, I will always feel like it did. I will always feel like my need for more is what pushed her over the edge.

I’m seeing the house the way it was set up on that final day.  Seeing her in her spot on the old couch. Seeing her on her ankle scooter wheeling away from me. Hearing the last few angry words we said to each other before I came out to sleep on the couch.

And then I’m feeling the absolute silence when I went into bed a few hours later. The silence I didn’t recognize until I tried to wake her up the next morning.

It’s replaying over and over again in my mind. I can see all of the spots that I could have done something differently, something that would have saved her. I’ve thought about them a million other times.

But I also know nothing will bring her back. It is as it is meant to be.

But I can’t help wondering.

I wish it was Sunday already so this would go away.

Well Played . . .

This is a Really Real Widow Post.

I took the dog out tonight and the yard was filled with fireflies.

Normally it’s a big deal being that Parker was my firefly and all.

But tonight, it was meh. They were just fireflies.

No Big Deal.

It’s kind of where I am with a lot of my grief. Things that meant a lot are no longer as big of a deal. I’m moving forward. It doesn’t mean I’m leaving her behind, it just means the pain is fading. Unfortunately the memories are fading too.

It’s not all good.

But I stood there and watched while the dog was doing the thing that dogs need to do in the front yard. Trying to look in the right spot while one blinked. Catching them just out of the corner of my eye.

And I realized one was getting closer.

And it landed on the door jam right beside me.

And I smiled.

Well played, Parker.

Well played.