Everything is so weird and just wrong right now. I can’t quite figure out what it is. Maybe it’s nothing. Maybe it’s just mental illness doing its thing. Maybe it’s the System falling into a new form of chaos. Maybe it’s exhaustion.
Either way, it feels awful.
My first two final practical exams are done. The first was rough overall, but my execution of skills was flawless. The clinical decision making part, however, was a little trickier. The second was easy and I totally nailed it. The third is on Monday and the one I’m most worried about.
I also had session on Monday afternoon and it was just shit. I had a hard time settling in because my brain has been so occupied with school lately that it can be difficult to transition to therapy. I mentioned this and I slowly talked my way through the chopped up thoughts I did have about how things have been going in sessions. I’d actually come to (what felt like) an important realization about the process. I shared that, but the therapist didn’t seem to connect with what I was saying, which was disappointing. And to make it worse, I felt like she challenged what I said and I ended up feeling pretty crappy about the whole thing.
She was asking about the System and that was a mess. It’s hard for me to even talk about because it is incredibly activating. We have survived this long because we have always presented as one single integrated person. Even when one Part does something that the Others don’t necessarily agree with, there’s no finger-pointing. So Rachel would never say that Julia cut herself. And Julia would never blame River for not eating. No names. No blaming. No System.
This, to my understanding, is the basic essential rule of survival. I don’t know who set it, but I know everyone follows it. Parts didn’t even start using their names on the outside until I realized there were parts. For three decades, whoever was fronting just went by Andi.
And now I’m disrupting that by sharing things. Sharing names. Talking about Parts and their complex inner world.
I shouldn’t be doing this. Who is it benefitting?
The therapist asked about River. I gave some information, but then I couldn’t speak anymore. Literally. It felt like all the muscles around my trachea seized up and I literally could not produce sound.
River does not want her secrets to be known.
And I don’t know that I want to know them.
She holds onto very awful and situation-specific trauma memories. This is linked to the eating disorder, among other things. Her emotions are incredibly strong and powerful. When she is in distress, it feels like dying.
I don’t want to provoke things. I don’t want to make this worse. I don’t want to do this.
We are two pounds away from River’s initial goal weight. The next goal is 14lbs lower than that. I told the therapist I don’t want to deal with this now. Maybe I can wait until the next goal weight?
“Do you think this will be any easier at that weight than at where you are right now?”
No. I don’t. But I don’t want to do this. I don’t want to go there.
The therapist asked me if I could identify with River at all. She asked if I understood the emotion River holds. I said yes, but I didn’t want to. I wanted to go far away. She asked me to “try to stay with it.”
I did. I tried. But then…I was gone. I can’t remember the end of the session.
How did I get here? How did it get this bad? When? How did I not see this coming?
I don’t want to do this.