Friday, February 28, 2014

Arrows from my heart

I love this quote about children by Kahlil Gibran--and I think of it when I think of my young kids growing up.  I was such a handful as a teen, and I imagine my girls will be, too. 
I pray I can have the wisdom to deal with the potential craziness that we didn’t have to contend with—like the possibility of every embarrassing moment EVER, recorded on camera phone and potentially uploaded to youtube.  I mean seriously, the thought of the stupid things I did when I was a teenager, having it uploaded for posterity, gives me the shakes.  If my girls were old enough, it would probably give THEM the shakes—of embarrassment.

Anyway, when I am trying to bend DD2 to my will to eat every damn last green bean on her plate before dessert, or commanding DD1 to not raise her voice in protest one more second when doing her math homework—that it’s okay to be upset but it is NOT OKAY TO THROW SHIT around the room in anger, or time out NOW, I try and remember this.  

 I’m doing my best to shape them to prepare for the future—of life as a young girl, teenager, young woman in our beautiful, but also maliciously unfair world.  To give them boundaries on what is acceptable for them to do and equally important as to what is acceptable for them to expect from other people—in a life that can be full of hope and at the same time full of injustice. 

My sweetheart 4 and 7 years olds, I love you.  I cannot control you, you are arrows from my heart, I can only do my best to prepare you for what the world might bring to your feet, and hopefully give you the tools to forge a path all of your own. 
Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life's longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.

You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,
which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them,
but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.

You are the bows from which your children
as living arrows are sent forth.

The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,
and He bends you with His might
that His arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the archer's hand be for gladness;
For even as He loves the arrow that flies,
so He loves also the bow that is stable.


Thursday, February 27, 2014

A marker in the sand

I’m finding it difficult to write about our journey these days.  I will be truthful, this is my third attempt at blogging.  The first I took offline when my marriage disintegrated—it was written primarily for me to keep in touch with my people far and wide, dispersed among the country thousands of miles apart.  It was a mask of what our life was really like—the stormy rages disguised by sweetheart pictures of my children, the beautiful ocean, crafts, friends.

Believe it or not, those posts that I kept up so that I could remember a sweeter time, were entered into evidence against me, as a kind of proof that the domestic violence didn’t happen.  Right now, I can almost laugh at the ludicrousness (is that even a word), when it’s clearly not a laughing matter.  But who honestly writes and posts detailed accounts of violence committed in their own home, by someone who they love and trust?  Needless to say, that blog went dark.

I then attempted a second blog, where my said beloved people across the nation had to sign in to keep up with the happenings.  It was there that I bled and cried and tore my hair out in fear, frustration at the court process, terror that something would happen to us, but having learned from my blog 1.0 experience, it was safe from the hands of my ex-husband.  And for a time I kept that up, even loaded up pictures of me and my children—surviving, growing, developing a life all on our own.  And then…when the final nail in the divorce coffin drove in, I somehow drifted away from that, resorting to facebook and Instagram and text as an easier and less time consuming means to reach out to my people—between the whirlwind drop offs and work schedule and whirlwind pick ups and extracurricular, homework time, dinner time, clean up, bed time, story time, etc. etc.   In fact, I still reach out to my people that way—email, phone calls, and few and far between visits, notwithstanding.

But somewhere along the line, I missed the writing--of putting to words pieces of my heart and soul.  And i needed to do it all on my own, in the open, without fear of someone finding it and trying to use it against me.  Of helping my healing process along by joining words to emotions, feeling, experiences, and maybe in some miraculous way, connecting with others who might be swimming in the same sea.  That somehow, leaving these words along the page, virtual or real, are a kind of buoy in the drift water, or a marker in the sand.  We are here, we are living and breathing, we are surviving, hoping, wondering.  We are pushing forward in our new, unexpected life.  We are not alone. <3

Monday, February 24, 2014

Happy birthday, week end!

Happy belated birthday, little ladybug (DD2).  <3 <3 <3

Sometimes, I can’t believe how fast time has flown since my belly was the size of the Star War’s death star.  How she grew from this tiny, smiling infant into this little kid energizer bunny, bouncing off the walls, sing Frozen’s “Let it go, let it go!  Can’t hold it back anymore!”  And as an aside, I love how she sings with such confidence, making up the words as she goes along.  Example,  Baa baa black sheep, have you any mull?  Yes sir, yes sir, three bags full.  The time I decided to sing it with her and say wool, she replied firmly, no, mommy, it’s mull.  Um, okay.  :)

We had her birthday party with all her pals from preschool and some of big sister Squirrel’s brownie pals for this past Saturday.  My sweetheart fiancĂ© offered up his house to host—mostly because I couldn’t fit a bounce house in our yard, and it fit so nicely during my big 4-0 birthday party last fall.  So a pizza party, bounce house fest it was!  I also borrowed an idea from another mom—I purchased a bunch of stickers, glitter glue, and markers, and gave all the kids little paper mache boxes from Ben Franklin to decorate—it was amazing how much fun and seriously focused they were on all the sticking, gluing, glittering.  We also had two boys along for the party (same ages as squirrel and ladybug, we’ve been friends since the kids were in the belly), and normally I’m all about gender neutral…but I found myself looking for ‘boy stickers’ for them—cars and baseballs and bats—along with the flowery sparkles that I got for the girls.  Their mom thanked me, so I guess that turned out okay!  Anyway, towards the end of the party, little ladybug fell out of the bouncer and bonked her knee.  She flew into my fiance’s arms (I was sitting on the side talking to another mom), which for him was a sweetheart, rockstar moment—in front of all the moms, ladybug ran to HIM with her owie.  Later, he told me he was so touched and felt like a rock star, and believe me, my heart about melted, too.

After the party, squirrel had two of her brownie pals sleep over—which was a thrill for ladybug, too.  I swear she also thinks she’s 7 years old (rather than 4), because she keeps up with the ‘big girls’ and their games, only every now and then coming to me for a cuddle, rather than racing off on her scooter after them.  We ate leftover pizza for dinner and I managed to get them all in the shower, teeth brushed, in bed by 8:00pm, if you can believe it.  But I knew that giggling would ensue for the next hour or so…which it did.  And which resumed at 5:30am, OMG! 

All in all…I think I did okay this week end.  I know these moments are fleeting and come and go, the river of life and all of that.  But I hope, somehow, these happy times, the laughter, the sharing, the silliness…I hope somehow it sticks.

Friday, February 21, 2014

what to do about anxiety and depression

i am having a hard time with my emotional regulation--constantly anxious, constantly depressed and after months of therapy in the 'aftermath' of getting out of a completely crazy situation, i'm coming to the conclusion that it is not normal for me to feel this way.  to wake up with a knot of anxiety in my belly.  to not be able to concentrate at work because i'm worried or anxious.  to get set off just because dear daughter 1 can't get her backpack out of the car at drop off in the morning--parenting FAIL.  to freak out because my SO heated up green beans instead of helping me with broccoli.  for a few moments, i was really pissed off about it, ready to yell!  which is totally stupid!  and i'm worn out, exhausted from the constant triggering, then the constant whittling back to gain control over overreacting.  this isn't normal, this is f-ed up. 

i'm tired of the hypervigilance.  i'm tired of the anxiety.  even all the worries about emailing perfectly normal things to my ex about girls scouts or ballet, should not be there.  the pit in my stomach when i see an email from him pop up in my inbox.  it shouldn't be there, either.

i am seriously considering zoloft.  the psychiatrist recommended it last time, but i said i'd rather try something short term and see how it goes, because i was worried and have resisted medication.  I guess I thought it was a sign of failure for not being able to do this on my own. which is also stupid, because i whole-heartedly support people getting help when they need it, what's my deal that i can't accept it for myself...?

but now i'm sitting here...and i'm bone-tired. i'm tired of waking up depressed and/or with the knot in my belly of anxiety.  everything i've tried so far isn't working.  i've made baby steps with the anxiety with therapy and sleep meds, but i am struggling with it. 

maybe I can't understand this because I sometimes cope okay and I do still laugh.  i have pockets of coping and laughing, but i am barely hanging on with my fingernails.  something goes wrong, my SO makes a stupid comment about the chive and i freak the *** out...or i worry that suddenly the preschool teachers are looking at me funny because maybe my ex convinced him he's this great guy and they don't believe me.  i shouldn't care about that sh**.  i just...i never thought i would try antidepressants, but i think i need to consider it.  i am a highly functional non-functional person because of my PTSD, and i think i've hit my limit.  and it sucks and i don't want to say that, but i'm struggling.

rather than do my research for work this morning, i'm looking up side effects of zoloft and writing all of this out.

my trusted friends have tried it and it really works for them.  they don't have decreased sexual appetites and they didn't have fundamental changes in their personality.
So…i'm seeing my psychiatrist and therapist next week tuesday.  i actually DON'T like being on medication.  i.e. i know people out there love ambien and for a while it helped me sleep, but i weaned myself off that sh** all by myself, because it just freaks me OUT to be on medication.

well, this is what I was thinking today--i still have hope and i'm still positive--but, damn some days are harder than others.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Year of the Wood Horse

2014 is the year of the wood horse.  I’m not sure what this means.  A quick gathering of internet commentary leads me to believe we’re on the verge of a high energy year, as in a galloping horse type of tempo, and apparently the wood element means sticking to one’s ideals.   A great big year of everyone sticking to their own ideas and galloping over one another’s voices?  I hope not.  Maybe it can be a high energy year full of adventure and promise, strong choices, decisive action.  Apparently there’s no room for dithering when horse is in the picture, so hold on to the saddle and get ready for the ride of your life. 

I am hopeful for the new year—so many changes have happened.  And there is, actually a long, seemingly overwhelming list of things to do this year—an elopement, a trip to the mainland to see family with my daughters in tow, a possible honeymoon, a milestone birthday for my significant other, an adult only honeymoon that said significant other is insisting upon, a party to celebrate wedding with our friends and loved ones.

I have also changed jobs and have come back to my new (old) job.  I started on February 3rd, so I’m merely in week 2 of this adventure.  And it feels like coming home.  I bounced through last week with smiles on my face, attending multiple meetings and established new projects on the horizon—in keeping, I think, with this wild horses rhythm everyone is talking about.

I am so fortunate to have these wonderful and life changing things happen—so need to take a moment to write it all down, so as not to forget.  February 10, 2014, I am looking with my own two eyes at all of these amazing things and I am thankful and grateful at how my life has changed.