Fibromyalgia, parenting, love and loss

It’s been a while…

I haven’t blogged in so long. Life had me somewhat paralyzed, I suppose. A year ago, I found out that the reason I’d been in so much pain for years was because I have fibromyalgia. The pain was getting worse, affecting not just the spine any longer but other areas. I developed chronic fatigue, which is fairly common with fibro. There were times I just did not want to live. A life of constant pain is no life. However, I knew I had to hang on for my children. I truly wanted to watch them grow, see them become adults. Maybe a better way of putting it is that I wanted to live; I just didn’t want to live the life I was living. I saw doctor after doctor who condescended to me and I became completely fed up with medical professionals (even though they were hardly professional).
As of last week, I have a new doctor. Well, she’s a Physician Assistant. And she’s awesome! Finally! I’m now on Tramadol, which my previous asshole of a doctor refused me. This medication has given so many people with fibro their lives back. I have hope now and it’s been a long time coming.
My relationship is in a low spot again. This is hardly atypical. We’re good, then we’re not. There’s never really been a middle-ground with us. I have no idea where it’ll go from here. Maybe you reach a point where you just can’t fight to make it anymore. It’s possible we’re both at that point. I’m not giving him what he needs and he’s not meeting my needs either. I’m tired of the struggle and I’m tired of being with someone who doesn’t seem to like me. He’s been great through my fibro. Supportive, helpful and wonderful in being empathetic to how ill I have been. There’s been good mixed in with the not-so-good. We have two kids together and we’ll be tied forever because of that.
A beach vacation is coming up within the week. Maybe that time away will reconnect us. Or, maybe we’ll go and enjoy the scenery but not each other. I’m not going to get my hopes up about it. It’ll be what it’ll be and either way, we’ll be at the beach so it won’t be awful!
My eldest child just graduated high school, which is bittersweet. I’m so proud of the man he has become, but scared of him leaving the nest. I have no experience with this, so I don’t really know how to handle it. I wish for a happy, successful, fulfilled life for him. He’s brilliant and has his choice of what he wants to do with his life. I pray he makes good choices. He always has, so I expect he still will. Just have to have faith!
The ex and I have been friendlier-well, more civil may be a better word for it. It’s been nice. I can’t tolerate animosity. His new wife has made me out to be the awful ex and I cannot control her actions; I can only control mine. I hurt him and I understand it takes time to get over that, but it’s been over 7 years. Time to move on with it.
I hope to get back into writing regularly again. Even if no one reads this, it helps me. I need to “get it all out” somehow so I don’t implode. If anyone is reading this, I wish you happiness and peace. Be well.

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Hidden Away

dark forest

Guide me through your passageways
Those seldom traveled paths
Tucked away inside your head
Your secrets they keep masked

Present in body but not in mind
You float with the ether to worlds unknown
Vibrant magentas and soul-soothing blues
A world of magic that I’m not shown

So here I sit and question
All that I cannot see
The world you’ve tucked away
Forever hidden from me

wildflowers

Drowning out the noises of the world

but mostly those in her own mind.

She wanders, seemingly closed off

from the world, the pain, the questions.

In her bubble she is safe, free

from the clutching demons so desperate

to drag her down.

In her silent escape she comes upon

a field of wildflowers.

They are everything she is not-joyful, vibrant, fearless.

And in that moment she knows what she must do.

So she lies down among the brilliant, swaying petals

and lets them envelop her with their beautiful hues.

She is no longer herself, but returned to the earth once more.

No pain, no noise, no fear.

Just peaceful silence.

R and I are cordial. We talk about the kids, about trivial things. Yet, over the past month everything’s changed. We are roommates, co-parents. Not even friends, really. And the funny thing is we always had passion-no matter what we’ve been through, that was always there. It’s been absent for some time now, though. I don’t know how to get it back, either. There’s a general feeling of apathy on both of our parts. We are disconnected and it breaks my heart. I remember how it used to be and I don’t know how to get back to that place…

Monday, Monday…

axiety

Mondays peak my anxiety. I believe it’s a matter of adjusting my energy to the energy of my workplace after a weekend respite. I feel the anxiety starting to mount on the commute and I focus on calming down, breathing, letting it go. Once I’m in my office, however, I know that at any given moment someone will knock on my door. I’m the main 1st Responder in a manufacturing environment, and people get cut routinely. They also come to me with HR concerns, health issues, you name it. If I could come in and know that I had some time to adjust, it would be so much better for my anxiety. If wishes were horses-well, you know the saying.

After a visit with my doctor recently, we upped the dosage on my Citalopram to 40 mg. per day. That’s the highest she’ll go with it. If after a month, I do not notice a reduction in my anxiety, then she wants to add Buspar to the mix. An anti-anxiety cocktail, as it were. I don’t want to take anything that will make me gain weight. See, with an eating disorder in my past and the fact that I’m finally back to my pre-pregnancy weight, I cannot and will not gain weight. It wreaks havoc with my self-image. If I keep doing my regular yoga and watching what I eat, hopefully it will not be a problem. Now for some good news-I’ve discovered that my life’s purpose is in healing. I’ve always gravitated toward jobs where I’m helping others. Part of my job title now is “Wellness.” The wonderful book “Destiny of Souls” helped me realize this purpose. I’m looking into reiki as an option. One day at a time, though. I’m not letting myself stress over change. I feel blessed to have finally found out what my raison d’etre is. Maybe eventually I’ll learn to heal my own chronic pain! One thing about the book that really resonated with me is that healers often have chronic pain themselves. It’s a way of really being able to empathize with others. This makes sense to me. Now, I still hope to cleanse myself once and for all of the spinal pain, but it definitely has brought greater empathy for those who are dealing with daily pain. It takes a toll in every facet of one’s life.

Things on the relationship front are much improved, thankfully. We’re communicating better/more, and communication has always been our biggest issue. I’m learning to let go of my anger and hurt over things he did in the past. You see, my ex-husband has held onto anger at me for my ending of our relationship. I hurt him, behaved badly and wish I could erase it. I’ll never be able to do that, though. All that I can do is make amends and be a better person in my life now, in this moment. That’s all R can do, too. I know he would erase the pain he caused me if he could, but there are no words he can say that will take it all away. So, I can hold it against him forever or I can accept his apology and move forward. I’ve chosen the latter. We cannot be granted forgiveness in life if we aren’t willing to extend the same forgiveness to those who have wronged us.

Ruminating again

rumination2

I’ve been pretty sociable at work this morning (yes, I’m writing from work), which is unlike me because I’m not a morning person. I was, however, here by 6:40 am so I’ve been here long enough to walk out of my office/cave and interact. I’ve noticed before that forcing myself to talk with others at work helps lessen the anxiety my work creates in me. Work is my anxiety trigger; I seldom feel the need for Valium when I’m home. People need so much here, and it wears on me. I have been here for 3.5 years now, and I’ve felt so worn out these days. I live for the weekends, and I don’t want to throw my life away doing that. Changes need to be made.

The ruminating has been happening this morning. Thoughts of one of the women R repeatedly cheated on me with. I sent her a message on MySpace (where the two of them used to interact), and she never responded. It was after I found out that he was with her many times when he and I were first together (and supposedly monogamous). My message to her wasn’t cruel; I didn’t blame her. She knew nothing of me. She never wrote back. I’ve always wanted to see a photo of her-a face to put with the idea of “Emily” from Guam originally. Seeing her image wouldn’t undo anything. I just want to know. So again I looked on Facebook and there are so many Emily’s, but none who seem to fit the bill. Once I thought of her, I thought of the other women and wondered what they look like. It’s crazy, unhealthy, and I know I should not put energy into those thoughts. Yet, they creep up on me, seemingly out of the blue. Would I feel better if I once and for all knew all the details about what he did with those random women, what they looked like, what they talked about, how many times they were together? Maybe. Maybe not. R isn’t one for giving away lots of details, and I’ve certainly pressed him for details in the two years since I found out. He says he doesn’t know Emily’s last name, or any of their last names. Most of the women were random women he met online, so I can understand that he may not have known their last names, but he was with Emily around 7 times (according to him), so I find it hard to believe that he does not know her last name.
It’s not like I’m going to bother her; I sent her an email and she didn’t respond, so that’s that. I guess I’m just looking for answers; some understanding of why and how he could do that to me. Maybe if I get those answers I will finally be able to let his infidelity go. Or, maybe life will just go on with my good days and bad days and I will have to find acceptance of that. Possibly, some days I will feel more enlightened, wiser, more able to understand the fallibility of humans, and then other days I’ll rage and cry and wonder why he didn’t love me enough to be faithful.

I need to quiet my mind now. There’s just too much going on in there for a Monday morning…

Both sides of the spectrum

anxiety-quotes3

The week is coming to an end (thankfully). Work-wise, it’s been stressful, draining and frustrating. I’ve been on a new antidepressant/anti-anxiety medication and it hasn’t kicked in yet, so my anxiety has been bad. I emailed my doctor on a particularly difficult day, asking if we could increase my valium dosage, or maybe try something else (stronger) because I was having such a hard time of it. She emailed back and said I should come in to see her. I’ve had meetings and trainings all week and will have more next week, and going to the doctor means missing a half-day of work due to my commute, so I told her I would ride it out and see if things improved. If not, then I’ll go in for a visit. My anxiety is totally manageable when I’m not at work. Work is my trigger. When I’m home with my family, sure, there are normal stressors, but my kids are such a source of happiness. Things with R have been so much better this week. We had a long talk last weekend and have really made great strides this week. We agreed on improving our communication, and I’ve also been more physically demonstrative with him, which has made him feel wanted and loved.

So, the week has been full of positives and negatives and I guess that’s just the way life goes sometimes. I would love to one day be one of those carefree people who takes everything in stride. Living with anxiety (mine is generalized as well as situational) is so draining on all levels. I’m a strong person, but the anxiety makes me feel week. I’ll ask myself why things that would not stress out a lot of people cause such stress and anxiety in me. I know that growing up, I wasn’t given the tools to deal effectively with stress. My parents both tend to be anxious and my father always drank to help cope. My mom developed ulcerative colitis when I was a young adult, and I believe that disease largely came from her anxiety. I understand that stress and anxiety affect us physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually and so I want to deal with it and heal. It’s a long process, though. I have setbacks, and then I will get down on myself for it. I do not want to go through my life needing to be medicated. For now though, I will take whatever medication I need to take to help me. It took years to ask for help, so I just need to remember to be gentle with myself.