Archive for the ‘celebration’ Category

I finally learned how to be a big sister. My brother came to visit me for three weeks, I have not seen my brother or sister in six months. When I heard he was coming, I was at once excited and doubtful. I’ve never been a proper big sister, never was able to be any sort of good example. Actually, the only good example I was able to give was how to stay on the right track so as to not totally fuck up your life.

When I first heard my brother was coming, I had this momentary insane worry over how should I act around him – like the me he knew, or the me that exists now? Problem was, I don’t really know how to act like a suicidally depressed whore, since I’m not that person anymore. I finally decided to simply go with the flow.

At the airport, I wondered to myself if maybe I shouldn’t smile so much. Maybe I shouldn’t act so excited. And while I waited at the arrival gate, I was overcome and wanted to cry, because this felt like a yet another second change for me. He did a double take when he saw me, jumping up and down and smiling. I don’t think my brother has ever seen me genuinely happy.

I forgot my ridiculous concerns as soon as I saw my brother. On the train to my grandparents house, we apologized to each other – it seems my brother did a lot of evolving and healing when I left, he said the sadness remained when I was gone — I simply made a good scapegoat. He also thanked me for being a fuck up, cause it kept him and my sister from staying down the wrong path as well.

It was a weirdly nice change, watching out for my brother, planning interesting things to do while he was here. I had a weird out of body experience as I would pack my knapsack in the morning with an extra pair of socks, sweatshirt, and gloves for my brother (having just come from the Canadian winter, he didn’t really understand that it is winter here in Israel as well). It happened again when I instictively tried to hold his hand when crossing the road.

Before my brother came over, I had been uncertain of the wisdom of returning to Canada for a few months before permanently returning to Israel. My family also thought I should stay here longer. But my brother changed that. I think it gave my family the ability to see more the change within me. And my brother said that I need to come back. To show my family that change is possible. It’s not enough to see the change through skype.

The last few years I always thought my siblings were invulnerable… I always saw them as having a tough shell, and I was envious of their close relationship, while at the same time, extremely thankful for the bond they have together. Any attempt I tried to made at fixing out relationship would end with their hard stares and monotonous conversation, which would start and end at ‘hi, how are you?’. So I was a bit stunned, when my big tough brother came to visit, and I realized he’s the same person I remember being friends with as a kid. A realization that made me tear up and made me feel even more protective of him.

My brother’s visit helped me. It helped repair our relationship, and made me feel better about potential that the future holds. It also gives me hope to mend things with my sister.

The last few days have been extremely difficult for me on an emotional level. I can handle a lot. But I start to lose it when those little things start snowballing. Cause then its like a whole mountain of crap has fallen on me and I can’t find my way out.

Part of it is cause of birthday celebrations. Which sounds so ridiculous. At least, until I remind myself that if someone else was telling me about being triggered by a birthday, I wouldn’t think anything unusual about it. If other peoples emotions and reactions are completely valid, why aren’t mine? Especially cause I’m actually sitting in the dark crying as I write.

Maybe cause by being triggered, I’ve allowed myself to remove myself from everyone else. Which looks snobbish and hermit-ish. And makes the problem worse. Mostly cause I made the problem worse just living with myself.

Cause yesterday the same pains and physical reaction my body had to being raped back in September (right before my birthday) ‘suddenly’ reappeared. Cue panic and anxiety. Then I start brooding. Then I lock myself away. Then I start freaking out about not being any better, and ending up back where I was… Anyways. You get the picture. It snowballs.

But it’s really about birthdays. And whatever unresolved issues I have there. Cause it’s awesome to be alive every day. That should be celebrated. I do celebrate it. I am thankful every morning I open my eyes. For every new day God has granted me life.

I just don’t want there to be birthdays.

I’m better about holidays. Cause its bigger then yourself. There’s a bigger picture. And it’s the same with birthdays, but that’s not the focus.

Dunno.

It’s not something I expect to get over tonight, in the dark, crying.

However,

I do expect me to get over myself. At least just a little bit.

I’m now almost a week in Israel. Which is awesome, and beautiful. And hot. Omg, the sweat. The heat sinks into your skin and clings to you, even in air-conditioned spaces. Worth it, totally. Even if I occasionally wonder why I thought it was a wonderful idea to come in the summer.

I think I’m finally getting the picture for God’s plan for me here. The earthly plan is for me to go to a kibbutz, study and work for a couple months. Which is not 100% precisely my idea of a vacation. BUT! I get why this is such a genius plan for me.

Basically, I need to know I’m capable. And I know, I really do know that I am a capable and functioning person now. This just throws me into life. Putting theory into practice. Cause that was a huge fear of mine for years — that I would forever be trapped in a drug addled mind only able to stare into space and act out in destructive ways.

I proved myself wrong on that front. But 1. I’ve never had a normal job. Was never capable of having one. 2. I tried and failed to go back to school. Several times. 3. I had no sense of worth.

The third point is the most important one. That’s taken care of.

Its the doing stuff that I (now) know in my mind I can do. I’m no longer functionally handicap (by which I mean I could pass, on occasion, for being like any other healthy person for short periods of time and a bit of creative thinking with what I said).

But being here, healthy, is weird. In a good way. But weird.

I went today to a village in the north to see some artwork. The same village where my family wanted to send me to ‘get better’. This was, like, 6 yrs ago. But they couldn’t deal with me. And I couldn’t even being to think of how I would deal with being around other people in a foreign country. I could barely leave my house. So that trip was spent pretty miserably. I thought I hid my rage well. I probably didn’t.

Last night, walking in the dark with my aunt, she asked me in a couple different ways what happened? how did I change? She came to visit my family 3 years ago. She pointed out that she could hardly talk to me, I was so out of it. Totally true. I also remember that at the time I put in massive effort to appear normal (functional). Also a fail.

It’s a really weird question to answer. What happened? I was raped again, moped around, and woke up.

Its the “woke up” part I have trouble explaining. I was made to be chemically brain dead by psychotropics and narcotics.

Yet, this is what I knew:

1. God was there while I was being raped. God loves me. God hates seeing me in pain. For once, I wasn’t angry at God.

2. My mind cleared once I realized I wasn’t angry. The zombie-making effect of the drugs left enough for me to really focus on and grasp the things I was compelled to research, some of which is somewhere on this blog in a rant. Something stuck, and pieces started falling together. I knew how fractured I was, and how, systemically, every part of my body and mind and spirit had been rapidly breaking down.

3. I finally found the will to live. This was different then my willingness to simply remain alive, and if I die… whatever. Everyone will be better off anyways, right? I began to burn with a desire to LIVE.

4. K, so, it took 6 weeks to detox. I was getting off everything at once, which was comparable to getting off herion and/or cocaine. And the psych-meds are supposed to take a couple years to totally leave the body before it’s able to rebalance itself. Six weeks. Seriously. At the same time I changed my diet, so I had the carb-flu at the same time. But I’m fine.

5. Really, God wasn’t there? How easy would it have been to give up, to go back to shit that would eventually kill me but that I was used to. This was before I managed to repair the fragmented parts of myself. Through the worst of my self-worthlessness, I’d remember almost dying, and God’s loving embrace. And the words that it’s not my time yet.

What happened?

Um. Transformation that has lead me here, to Israel. To accelerate an already rapid journey in becoming all that God intended.

So I’m sitting in a hotel room, having just been at my great-aunt’s surprise bday. Still in my dress. Thankfully shoeless (I started the night off in heels. Decided it was ridiculous to have sore, burning feet, and promptly switched to my baby blue Vibrams. Looked uber sexy with the little black dress 🙂

I think I fretted over seeing family for nothing. Yes, there was surprise that I was there. But I tend to forget just how awesome my family is, having isolated myself for so long. I end up wondering if I had just forced myself to remain in that bubble, would all the shit that’s happened to me still have happened? Probably yes.

So, from the hotel room comment, you can deduce I am in another city. While here, I’m planning on shopping. I was all pumped to buy new clothes this morning. Didn’t end up happening. I got pissed and returned to my room. It started with the grey sky and cool temperature, and ended with a saleslady giving me that haughty “what are you doing here?” look. And I realized that the effort I’d have to make of actually putting on clothes to try was way too much.

The night before I drove here, I was helping my mother pick clothes to bring. I tried giving her a pep talk. That beauty is a social construct that changes with the times at society’s whims. And fuck what other people think (referring to her exposing her arms).

I thought about that since. Beauty. And what it means. There is a post I did a while back where I commented about how my ability to see beauty in anyone is not a good thing. I fully take that back. Because I do see beauty in everyone. But I don’t want to fuck them. Which was what I was confused about before. Appreciation does not equal lust.

Anyways…

Beauty. I went to the party this evening with my arms and legs exposed. Gasp! Not only are my arms not toned, but they are scarred too. My arms obviously scarred. I wore my septum piercing too. This was not for a reaction. This was to be authentic to myself. Because I am comfortable as I am. And… well, fuck everyone else.

I ended up leaving early. Mostly because my feet were killing me in my gorgeous heels. I ended up sitting on the bed, wanting to go back again. I like being around others. It’s nice to realize I can carry a conversation and make small talk and smile and mean it. I don’t think I give myself enough credit at times (okay, all the time).

So as soon as I had tossed my heels, I get a call. My parents and aunts and uncles escaped the party also. And invited me to go grab a burger with them. The drive there and back was entertaining and enlightening and sad. The conversation was loud, outspoken, tactless, and truthful.

The burger was awesome. We snuck back into the party just in time for dessert. But by then the excitement had kinda died down.

It’s weird. I had to live a double life for a long time. And in a way, it’s like I am again. But I guess that applies to most people. You see the face the other person presents. Tonight, I tried to merge the various sides of myself. I did that with the exposure of my scars, my septum, my lack of makeup (mascara and lipstick don’t count when everyone else pancakes it on), showing my half-finished tattoo that’s on my leg (a coverup. It used to be a girl blowing her brains out. It’s now a water/lotus flower/rock scene). I survived. That’s what it shows. The fact I refused to wrap my body up just because I’m not acceptably thin. Looking in the mirror I could finally see that I have lost weight. And I felt awesome. And confident. And beautiful. And comfortable.

So. Theme song for this post: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZQDSDbfVde8

Cause this song makes me super happy whenever I hear it. And it’s safe to turn up the volume 🙂

I find it hard to maintain interest in anyone. And this goes beyond romantic entanglements. This includes friends and family as well. It’s not unusual for me to just not contact a friend for a period of time, and then ease back into conversation. But… the people who are my friends are the few who just continue to be there year after year. I can probably count on one hand the people who I’ve kept around and want to keep around. It’s weird. It would be awesome to have a group to hangout with (my friends are all individual friendships with vastly different personalities/lifestyles from each other. I can’t actually bring them together. Like the kinkster with the extremely religious. That’ll go over well. Not.).

With family… Fuck. I come from a tight knit family. Even with those who live overseas. I’ve been actively avoiding them for a long long time. At first, I would make up excuses based on the various things that ailed me (pain, anxiety, whatever). But eventually, I stopped saying anything. It was just a given that if family got together, I wouldn’t show up. I’m pretty sure my youngest cousin has no idea who I am. And she’s now a few years old (fuck, I don’t even know her age).

Anyways. I had promised myself to be more social, which is kinda what brought me to date again (I know, totally the wrong way to go about it). But I’ve been making an effort to initiate contact with friends instead of ignoring. Gotta start somewhere.

I’ve been thinking about my avoidance of those I used to be close to. Especially because it’s my great-aunt’s birthday later this month. Her husband is throwing her a surprise party. I have to face them sometime, and I figure this would be a good place to start. Especially since I’d be staying in the hotel where the party is, so really, I have a built in exit strategy.

It’s stressful. The people in my family are well off, well educated, stable… My cousins close in age to me are studying in various parts of the country, living independently, have jobs, relationships, friendships, pets. And then there’s me. Ex-whore who never graduated high school. Weird fact about me – I’d rather admit I was prostituted then someone without a high school diploma. Regardless of the fact that I got into university anyways on the strength of my grades.

Anyways. It’s the questions and comments from others that is stressing me. The whole “what are you doing with your life” conversation that comes from people you haven’t seen in ages. WTF do I say? “Well, I recently got myself off drugs after being raped yet again. It made me realize that what I’m doing wasn’t working for me. And now I sit in my room and write about myself so unknown people can hear my thoughts”?

Hmm.

Part of me wants to say something like that just for the reaction. Then my better judgement kicks in. My therapist offered to roleplay those awkward questions to lessen the anxiety. And I guess I’ll actually have to do that now.

Even though I don’t feel inadequate or worthless, I know if I start measuring myself against them, I’ll lose. Even though what I’m doing and where I am is just as important as studying Russian Lit for the hell of it (One of my cousins. Really, what does one do with an education in Russian Literature?).

Plus there’s the whole body image thing. I’d be lying if I said I’m totally confident in my skin.

I’m not. I fake it really well. But my weight and appearance isn’t something I like to talk about, and rarely like being commented on. Both have zero relevance to me as a person. But, they aren’t blind. I’ve lost 40+lbs in the last while, but I’m still bigger then I used to be (I mean at my baseline weight, not my skinny unhealthy self). And a few of the women in my family really have no tact when it comes to stuff like that. And then I start comparing myself to my sister, who I still think is the pretty one. Or my aunt, who used to be a model (the magazine kind).

So I can’t even comment about my weight, or the fact I’m losing it, cause I don’t want it to be something they focus on (I end up thinking they’re mentally calculating the 40+lbs back on my frame. Or thinking about how good I used to look). But it’s there. I’m not invisible.

Then to dating. I’ve noticed that I have an uncanny ability to tell when a guy is interested, or about to pick me up. In public, I mean. And I hate hate hate being hit on in public. But if it’s a guy I’ve chatted with for a bit, and decide to meet, I really can’t tell. I actually have no clue if he’s interested or not. It has to be said. Otherwise, I’m oblivious.

I was wondering why that was the other day, while I was swinging in the park (it’s a very meditative activity. I highly recommend it). It occurred to be that it’s some sort of residual survival instinct from being a pro. I’d have to evaluate a guy in the few seconds from him opening the door to me walking in and him shutting it. I had to know, instantly, whether I’d be safe or not. So, now, if it’s someone I want to be interested in, or might be interested in, or just someone to know for fun… I can’t. I can’t read them. It unbalances me.

I’ve also realized I’m kinda chasing that connection I had with J. It was just this instant click.

So now, it’s easy to lose interest. Cause if I can’t get that click, I don’t see the point. Or the guy will say something, and I’ll suddenly think to myself, fuck I’m bored. And like that, I’m done.

But… it’s better then toying with men. And it’s better then just giving into sex. I’ve realized a perverse pleasure in saying no. It’s an awesome word. I love it. But it’s also false empowerment.

Back to family.

I also have to get used to small talk. Small talk bores me. If I can’t get into an in depth discussion, I don’t want to speak. And there’s a lot of superficiality in that branch of my family. It’s just not stuff I care about. My life experience has been so vastly different that I get stuck on words and just listen and nod my head and murmur appropriately and daydream. Or find a corner and read.

One person I am looking forward to seeing. One of my younger cousins. Who doesn’t really know me, but seems to adore me regardless. I’m not crazy about kids, never have been. But she just has a spark that’s refreshing to be around. Crazy wild imagination too. Last time I saw her we build a fairy tale castle out of styrofoam and glitter. It was awesome.

At the very least though, it’ll bring some excitement.

I have been giving this some thought for the past week. I’m not typically big on resolutions, but it seems to fit my need to continue to change myself.

In 2012:

I will be the change I want to see

I will treat myself with respect and dignity and worth

I will continue transforming my body, mind, soul

I will allow myself to be loved, and love in return

I will be swept up in the music of life

Hmm, the problem with waiting to write things down is that I tend to forget them 🙂 I usually hate holidays, new years… Everything.

Two years ago today, I spent new years in a club with the man who would become my bf (a**hole that he ended up being), was still trapped in the sex trade… On the up side, I actually punched a guy for feeling me up on the dance floor.

Last year, new years was miserable, as I had just broken off with said (ex) bf — I was burned out and could take no more. I can’t believe I spent the new years crying in a hotel room, when I should have really been celebrating.

This year, I had planned on sleeping through the new year… my new favorite activity 🙂 Didn’t happen that way… I slept early, woke up just before the official new year, and listened to music (something I would not have done even a month or so ago). I guess I could have gone out, or called someone to hang out with, but honestly, I just wanted to be quiet and reflective (or as quiet as it can get with music screaming in my ears. Oddly though, I find my thoughts quieting the louder and noisier it gets).

I opened the New Year with a smile on my face, and feeling warmed with the massive changes that have occurred in the last few months 🙂

Happy New Year!

❤ Stay safe

{Let me just preface this by saying that this is my opinion only, and that I am only doing what is right for *me*. I am acting with the blessing and supervision of my therapist, and while I am not a professional, I spent a very long time researching to make sure that my thinking was heading in the right direction}

In the last several weeks I have been in the process of reducing and eliminating my medication with the hopes of becoming med-free for the first time in 14 years. Just to put those 14 years in perspective, I am 24 years old. I have been heavily medicated since I was ten.

A couple weeks ago, I was once again upset and resentful about being dependent upon chemical compounds (a feeling that overcomes me quite often). This time though, my thoughts took a different turn —

I started thinking about my development. It really hit me that I had been severely limited by the addition of heavy medications at 10, only to continue taking them for the next 14 years.

It started out because of an injury in school during gym class, a hockey puck to the knee. The swelling and bruising was normal. But the immense pain was not. Tests showed nothing. My doctor suggested I was “acting out” to keep from going to school. Other doctors suggested it was all in my head and that I needed psychiatric help.

Eight months went by before I had a firm diagnosis– that my pain was real, and I was not faking it.

Things continued to deteriorate– at school, I was ostrasized for being different. At home, I just shut myself up in my room and retreated. My parents took me to the “best experts” in the country….

At 10, I was declared clinically depressed due to the chronic pain, and thus suicidal. That I *needed* medication.

Typical of modern-day health care, no doctor ever really tried to get to know me, or figure out what was the cause of my pain (abuse). It was simply accepted as fact that pain made you depressed, and therefore, I was depressed.

I spent several months out of the next few years in hospital getting treatment. Meanwhile, my diet was abismal, consisting of hospital pizza and pasta. So of course my weight weight up, making me even more withdrawn and isolated.

To say nothing of the dehumanization of actually being in hospital.

Fast forward… I was 16, and deteriorating once again, after having a good year. On even more heavy medication. My first serious relationship has been going on for a year, and for a year I have been abused. Both my ex- and I were put on accutane at this time, and he became even more rageful and vengeful towards me, while I turned my anger inward and became completely unresponsive, almost catatonic. My parents brought me to emerg, and I was placed in psychiatric care for the summer.

This started a pattern. I learned hospitals were safe– even with “crazy” people. He could not touch me or harm me anymore while I was locked away. I felt better, I did a lot better. Of course, everyone continued to insist I was depressed (my habit of cutting did not help– again, turning my anger and rage inward).

Fast forward… My parents take me to visit various mental institutions, and there is talk of putting me away. Frankly, I’m not sure I care much. I never had freedom to begin with, so why would being locked away matter? At least I would be safe.

Fast forward… I am diagnosed as bipolar. Something I now believe was result of being placed on so much medication that ruined my gut and brain (plus the shitty diet, I think at this time, I was anorexic, and making sure I got less to eat then people in countries of famine– yes, I actually did the research). Finally, something broke and I became psychotic.

What I never mentioned to any “expert”, was all the abuse, and the abuse I was experiencing before, during, and after this psychosis. After all, it was my fault right? Boys will be boys, and all that crap…

Of course, the “experts” knew I was abused, that is the kicker. They could tell. Some pressed me on the subject, some mentioned it, trying to be subtle. But they all knew.

Fast forward… I am… 20? 21? I have attempted suicide yet again by overdosing on my pills, which I have failed to take for two weeks, having collected them instead. Oddly, while my mind is confused and muddled, it is no worse. I still overdosed. I was not trying to die. Never did I want any of my attempts to result in death. I just needed something to change. And I did not have the tools at the time to fix myself. So I did the only thing I could think of to get to a safe place and recollect.

In psych wards, I was always polite, well behaved, and friendly. I was being looked after and safe. That made me happy.

Anyways, my mental health is not something I like to discuss normally. I realize how my actions looked from the outside looking in. I acted like someone with a serious brain imbalance.

The last several months I have been doing a bunch of research… I have been compiling evidence that someone like me can be healed through proper nutrition (orthomolecular medicine). But since it is only me compelling me to act, and no one else helping me out, I had to actually implement change on my own.

Change happens in an instant, but getting to the momentous shift can take forever with the thinking and hesitating, and analyzing.

On sept 25th, I was raped again. And I used that as a catalyst to change.

I forced my brain to focus on what I was researching. To assimilate the knowledge I was reading and to actually process it. Finally, it started sinking in. And my thoughts, which would usually peter out if getting too complex, actually clicked. The cycle I am in is killing me, my health is failing me, and my quality of life sucks.

So I did an overhaul, I revamped my diet first, started getting more fresh air, put things into play to ensure that I slept at night peacefully. I created a good support system around me. I really opened up to my therapist. I got better.

I started questioning my diagnosis. I’ve long accepted that my fibromyalgia pain is my body’s result to trauma. But could the bipolar be as well? I did more digging.

I found out about damaged gut flora, and how it can create physical and mental problems within the body that can manifest as both fibro and bipolar. (google “GAPS”– gut and psychology symdrome).

I started to believe that my symptoms were a result of nutritional defitency. That my mental state was the result of long-term heavy drugs used to control mood. The side effects sometimes “create” illnesses like bipolar. I also learned that my painkillers could be making my pain worse. I also feel like the real source of all problems is trauma. Help the trauma and I help myself.

Everything built up until I decided to simply wean off. I informed my psychiatrist, told my general practitioner, and explained in depth to my therapist, who completely understands, and is amazed at the progress I have been making.

A week and half ago, I started tapering off oxycontin. Yup, same stuff that people sell in the street, snort, crush, get high off of. I’ve been on it for at least the last 10 years.

I am now on day 3, being completely and utterly medication free. Here are my observations about myself:

I am at peace. My mood disregulation is gone. My complex- PTSD symptoms have all calmed down. I smile randomly throughout the day. My mind is clear. I am capable of complex thought process in a way I never have been before. There is a spring in my step, where as before, I walked about as fast as my cane-using 80 something yr old grandmother. I feel a desire to do things I have not done in forever, or have been too triggered to do (like listening to music).

I actually feel hope for the future. Trying to start a business while being unwell just was not feasible. I’ve now come to discover just how bogged down my brain was due to medication– I could not function as a “normal” person– no focus, no concentration… I have drive, but had little motivation to propel me into action.

I have an appt set up with my p.doc this week, and I hope I sound coherent when I explain my reasons for getting off meds. He has always taken the stance that taking them is up to me, and only me. But it would be nice to have his support, like I do my therapist. I am also doing a 17wk group therapy for abuse survivors. I am doing BodyTalk, where I am connecting mind to body, which is helping me heal in leaps and bounds, instead of tiny baby steps. I have an appt this week too with a naturopath, with whom I hope will guide me in the correct direction regarding supplementation, and diagnostic testing (I suspect some hormones might be out of balance, possibly candida…which of course contributes to the mess my body is in). It’s a lot of specialists I have been committed to seeing, but I figure if I do the work now, I will benefit sooner, and for longer.

I am still in detox from oxy, but the worst is over. The miserableness of the last week and a half has lessened to mild unpleasantness. It is thrilling, because my baseline pain levels are lower then normal.

Stay safe ❤