The last couple of days have been so rough. I’m hanging in there, but I kind of feel like I’m drowning.
Thankfully my monthly peer support group for DID was today and that was a damn lifesaver. It is remarkable how healing it can be to sit in a room with people who have such a profound understanding of the fundamental way I experience this world. It was one of the best groups I’ve been to so far. We really touched on some deep and very important topics that resonated across the group, allowing for a really meaningful conversation that I think all of us needed today.
I always feel less crazy when I leave there.
I met my wife in Central Park after the meeting and we ate bagels while sitting on sun-warmed rocks, people-watching the walkers, runners, bikers, horse carriages, and rickshaws all around us. It was one of those experiences that feels surreal. The park was absolutely beautiful and the sun was soothing to my soul as it beat down on my cold skin.
Next was shopping. I needed a “business casual” outfit for an event later this month since all of my professional clothing is too big now. I found a blazer and button-down, but we both walked out of the shopping center with massive headaches because the lighting in those places is too intense for life. Plus someone had sprayed a truly insane amount of perfume and it was probably poisoning our brains as we browsed clothing racks.
At that point we were ready to get home and relax. I barely slept last night. I actually don’t even remember when I went to bed or the time before that. Wife says River was up, doing random stuff such as having a “Sister Act”/”Sister Act 2” musical binge YouTube session, which was apparently set off when someone mentioned that one of our patients at clinic yesterday was a nun.
I’m sorry I missed that.
My body hurts so bad. My right hip is the injured one and that certainly hurts more than I’d expect it to today, but the side of my left hip feels like someone kicked me. My back hurts all the way up my lower spine and my shoulders are sore. It feels like I was thrown against a damn wall.
I mentioned this to wife and she said I “fell out of the chair” at session yesterday. Which explains how I ended up on the floor of my therapist’s office, but it doesn’t necessarily explain the soreness. Maybe it is not today pain as much as a memory. Wife asked if I wanted to know more about what she knew about session (from River) and I said, “Nope.”
But I do want to know. Sort of. I want to assess the damage I’ve done.
I was feeling so good about the relationship with my therapist. I still do. But I worry about how long we can sustain these types of incidents. I truly feel that she is handling this work and is keeping pace with me. But there’s always an Insider around that tells me awful things about her and myself and it terrifies me.
Plus I’ve gotten some feedback that makes me wonder if she’s doing this in a safe way. Maybe she shouldn’t have just let me walk out the door in that state? I don’t know what else she could have done, but it makes me nervous and scared to think she is not taking care of me (professionally) in an appropriate manner. I’ve had quite enough of that already throughout my life.
When I see her and talk to her, it’s easier to remember that she cares and is good at her job. When we’re apart, the internal voice dominates and I start to wonder if she cares at all and if I should even go back to session. I wonder if she is irritated or annoyed with me. I worry that she’s getting overwhelmed.
Maybe she’s out of her depth and neither of us know it (yet)?
I let this internal battle go on for about three hours before I called her to leave a voicemail. I told her I would like for us to speak before Monday’s session and that I felt it was important that we be able to do so. I asked her to call if she could.
Now I can’t remember what was so important.
I think I need to ground myself back to what’s real and what’s true. I need her voice to be louder than the voice telling me she’s no good and I shouldn’t trust her; the voice that says I tell lies and create drama because I’m an attention-seeking crazy person; the voice that says there was no abuse or rape or torture but rather a little girl with a wild and perverse imagination.
I should probably be doing that for myself. The ability to self-soothe is an essential developmental milestone that babies generally reach by four months old. If it is lacking in older children, it is considered a “red flag” worth investigating. If infants can soothe themselves, I should certainly be able to get through a weekend without needing reassurance from my therapist, right?
I can’t. Not yet. I don’t know how. Someone in group today said, “I feel like I’ve only ever had one crayon in my entire life and I’m being asked to create a masterful painting. I don’t have the right tools!”
I really related to that statement.
My therapist didn’t call back today. Maybe tomorrow. Or maybe she hates me.