I’ve been a little absent again. I’m sorry. Things have been crazy lately.

I’ve gone to Baltimore twice in the past month or so, and I’m going back Wednesday-Saturday. Well, Wednesday and Saturday will most likely be spent driving. 12 hours of fun! My dress for the wedding is ready and fits, and I’m super excited for it to happen.

I don’t know if I said this in the last post…I could go check but I’m being lazy. I got a dog, Oliver. So he’s been filling most of my time. He’s eight months old and doing well, but not fully potty trained yet. It’s kind of a nightmare with that. I had him in this mesh enclosure thing I used to transport White Kitty down here to Georgia, but he ended up chewing through it and escaping. I do need to get him a crate, but I’m royally broke right now. This sounds insane but I am trying out a doggy diaper to see if that works at all. It’s mostly just when I’m gone for work that he has accidents. But we’re working on it.

White Kitty has been hiding a lot, which is kind of sad for me. I miss her. She’s taken to hiding in my bathroom cabinet (below the sink), so I made it comfy for her. Pillow, blankets, etc. Hopefully she comes out more soon.

Work has been…work. Busy. Hectic. Stressful. I had a job interview yesterday. It was a culture interview, actually. Second of third; if they like me, I’ll go on to the third (a resume interview). I haven’t heard anything, though. My anxiety has sky rocketed. I wish they would have told me something today. My boyfriend applied to the same job, but he had his interview on a Wednesday (and he heard back Friday). So I suppose I’ll hear back Monday? I guess. He didn’t get chosen, which really sucks. It kind of makes me feel bad. I don’t think I’ll get it, but if I did…I don’t know. I’d always feel self-conscious.

There’s a lot going on with that. Feeling self-conscious. Contemplating if I matter. If my opinion, ideas, or anything I have to say, matters. Does anyone really want to hear me, anyway? People constantly talk over me. Cut into what I’m saying. Why do I even bother speaking? This is why I stopped when I was little. I went silent because nobody heard me anyway. Why keep trying when it’s useless. Nothing I said mattered, nothing I did made anything better. I could wish and pray and hope with all my might, but it would never stop. Until it did, and I blamed myself anyway.

I miss my dad. It’s Father’s Day soon. Everybody coming into Starbucks is buying the Father’s Day gift cards. Tomorrow there’s supposed to be a group of thirty people celebrating fathers coming into the store for their celebration. I don’t want to be there for that, but I don’t have a choice. I ache to feel my dad’s presence again. I ache to feel his touch. I ache to hear his voice. I wish I had him back. And I hate myself for being jealous of other people who do have their dads. I hate that I’m so bitter towards them. There’s no reason for me to be. I’m glad for you if you have your dad. I just miss mine. I don’t wish this upon anyone, though I know it will happen eventually to most.

I hate the hole it’s left inside me. It’s a giant void I feel myself slipping into from time to time. Like right now. It’s a black hole filled with shreds of my broken heart. Desperation, longing, and bitterness reside there. It’s funny how you wish you had someone back, but can’t stand to be around anyone else who is actually here.

They can get it, they can not get it. The point is, nothing anyone ever says will make it better. And I don’t say that in a mean way…it’s just kind of the truth. It feels nice to have people care, and try, but no one can be my father, or bring my father back. No one can tell me why. No one can explain why that was necessary…a reason that would actually make sense to me. Why is it supposedly God’s will for my dad to succumb to cancer? He went out in pain. He left me in pain. Why is God’s will pain?

I wish I had answers. I wanted to be able to go to church…and I actually asked my boss if I could have Sunday’s off for school this coming semester (so that I could go to church in the morning). But she said Sunday’s are tricky, and she needs me to work. I close Saturday nights, so that doesn’t work for church either. Maybe one day I’ll figure something out.

I don’t know why I’m becoming to anti-people lately. It’s like I crave love, I crave having people who care…but I also crave sleep. And being alone. And not bother humanity with my insanity.

I don’t know what I want. But something has to change. This isn’t tolerable.

-June 16, 2017

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Necessary Mood Lift

I’m feeling really good at this particular moment, which is nice. I’ll savor it while I can.

Another semi-stressful night at work…although my boss was very encouraging, which helped calm me down a lot.

Anyway, I closed, and drove home/checked the mail. I got a letter from the college I’ve been attending, saying I’ve made the Dean’s List. Hence my feeling good.

I just had this immediate thought of, “I’m finally doing something right!”. I know I do a lot wrong, but I also know I do some things right…so that isn’t the only “right” thing I’ve done lately. But it’s had the most impact on me. I think because everything else I do “right”, it’s kind of expected. It’s the norm/really isn’t anything special. But upon reading this letter, it’s just something extra that I didn’t really expect. Honestly I didn’t even think about the Dean’s List, or any other awards I might have gotten lately. The surprise helped a lot, I think. It just feels really nice to have this accomplishment. I worked really hard these past few semesters, with not a ton to show from it. Now it’s changed.

So besides feeling that, I am also feeling a little bit of anger. I feel like I’m kind of being used, in some regards. I don’t really want to go into huge detail…just the feeling kind of sucks. I feel like a good part of my meaning to this person is certain things I have. I want to be enough on my own. I also want to be able to say no and not regret my decision.

All in all, it hasn’t been a terrible day. It is 12:42am, though, so bed is getting a little necessary. Until tomorrow. ❤

-May 27, 2017

This World

This world frustrates me. On a constant basis. Whether it’s my friends being shot down by idiot boys who need to realize when they have something awesome, or my workplace constantly pointing out everything I do wrong.

I don’t enjoy living this way.

I feel like I try so, so hard at work. I try to do everything right, but obviously that’s not always going to happen. And then every time I do something wrong, it’s pointed out. I can’t take it anymore. It’s never, ‘oh good job on that whatever’…it’s always, ‘in the future, you really should do ___’. I am one who likes to learn from my mistakes. But I am also a firm believer in praise as well as criticism. I will resent you, like I do now, if all you tell me is criticism.

I hate that I’m even scared to type these words, in fear that someone will read it and alert my work. I shouldn’t be scared to vent my frustrations. But I am. In this world, you’re always wrong, and they’re always right (when it comes to work).

I don’t know how long I can take this for. I need to transfer, or something. I feel obligated to work at Starbucks until I finish my degree, now that I’m doing their tuition reimbursement plan. It’s a really good opportunity, and if I don’t do it, I will be in a lot more debt that I already am. But can I really take this pressure for much longer? Three years longer, to be exact?

I hate that I dread work. I hate that I’ve grown to be cynical of the place I once used as an escape. Starbucks used to be my safe place. Now I don’t even like being in one. I just feel the pain radiating.

Is it possible to look forward to your job? Without getting a degree in something you’re passionate about? I wish I could afford to work less…take more time to do things I love. I feel like my life revolves around that place. Revolves around each paycheck. No matter how hard I work, the paycheck still sucks.

I’m diving lower and lower in my bank account. I don’t have much room to mess around. Whatever comfort space I had in the account, it’s gone. Which makes me more miserable. I work hard and then have to sit at home watching Netflix every single night, because I’m scared of spending money out that I might need for something more important.

I feel lonely. I do spend most of my time not at work alone. If I’m not with my boyfriend, I’m with my cat. I like my alone time, but it’s getting depressing. I want to be around people, but I don’t. I want to be happy, but it’s hard to maintain.

I just wish I knew what to do.

-May 23, 2017

Liking Self Vs. Liking Life

I’ve been going through my old altered books today. If you’ve been to Sheppard Pratt Center for Eating Disorders, you know what that is. If you haven’t been there, maybe you still might know what it is. It’s actually a pretty good coping strategy. You take an old book (I’ve always preferred bigger books)…you cut things out from magazines and glue them in, draw in it, write in it, etc. You take an old book and make it your story.

Since I’m not that great at art, and art groups always kind of sucked for me, I would prefer to work on my altered books (most of the time).

The main reason I’m bringing it up is because I found a paper taped in one of them that spoke to me.

It’s a list of 67 “confessions” that I suppose those with eating disorders, or even anxiety/depression, can relate to. I starred the ones I had felt applied to me at the time. I will admit, I’m not sure what time period we’re looking at here…but it’s from SP, so sometime between 2009-2015. Probably closer to sometime in the early/middle years.

One of the confessions I starred was this:

“I wish that I didn’t hate myself but at the same time, I don’t know how it would feel to like myself.”

Earlier today, I was showing my therapist some of the books. There’s several pages dedicated to fear foods, skinny models, weight loss quotes from magazines, self-harm-related things, etc. She asked me how it felt to look at all of this. I said it felt weird. It’s kind of surreal, because I’m no longer in that place.

I can’t say I’m completely over my eating disorder, because I’m not. And honestly, I don’t believe that I ever will be completely rid of it. The thoughts still occur, but they’re different now, and more sporadic. They’re more manageable. They’re not the same.

But when I read this quote, something struck me about it. If I am being completely honest, I still don’t know what it feels like to like myself.

I don’t think I hate myself anymore, but I don’t like myself either. Where does that leave me? In a state of confusion, really. I’m in a state of…I just don’t like myself. I don’t like the way I come off, or the awkwardness I can carry. I don’t like my inability to confront people on things that need to come to light. I don’t like that I hardly ever stand up for myself, yet I’m totally willing to stand up for everyone else.

I like my love for animals, though when I say that, I automatically think about how it turns people off. They think I’m weird, because I love animals so much.

I don’t even know what else I like about myself. If I could, I’d change a lot. I like the people in my life, and I like the love I can give and receive. I like several qualities of my life. But I don’t like myself.

It’s strange, really. I thought in the process of recovery, one of the goals was to learn to love yourself. I haven’t really learned that. I’ve learned how to follow through with actions that compliment loving myself, such as eating, drinking water, working hard at school/work, and being social. I’ve made a lot of accomplishments, like paying for school, getting promoted, having my own apartment/moving out. But that doesn’t mean anything about myself.

I guess it would be logical to like yourself for making all these accomplishments. But it’s not true.

Does anyone else relate?

-May 18, 2017

It’s The Courage To Continue That Counts…Or So They Say

This world is kind of cruel.

Yesterday was a shit show. Today didn’t turn out much better, either.

I didn’t sleep well, so I’m exhausted now.

School was really difficult, but not in the usual sense. I had my last day of classes today. In communications class, whoever hadn’t gone yet were giving their debate speeches. The final topic of the day was doctor-assisted suicide, or as they phrased it, “dying with dignity”. Many of their examples were obviously people who are terminally ill. The topic combined with the examples brought up a lot for me. I couldn’t stop thinking about my dad, and his death process, and obviously how it affected me. It’s hard to explain, but the feelings emerged again, full-force. That happens sometimes…it’s not a specific memory that triggers the feelings, it’s the feelings from the entire process/experience. They just emerge out of nowhere. No matter how many times I’ve tried to “deal with it” in therapy, sometimes that just happens. It’s hard for me, because there’s no specific reason I’m crying and shaking…I just am. So I don’t always know how to soothe myself.

I suppose a plus for me today was that I chose to reach out to my professor. I don’t even know her that well, but my options were to ask her for help, or go into the hallway and break out in a panic attack in front of everybody. I said, “I know you’re not a therapist, but can I talk to you?”, and she brought me to her office. I was crying and shaking some but it didn’t end in a full on panic attack. That’s pretty good for me. I took the time I needed to calm down, and went on to my next class.

I made a really big move today as well to pay off all of my medical debt. That was a difficult decision to make, seeing as how my debt was extremely high. I have medical accounts in collections dating back to 2011. I couldn’t even tell the lady at one of the companies what my address was at the time for that account. I did live in Florida for one of the accounts, but I a) don’t remember my living there (besides the main fact that I lived there), and b) don’t have a clue what my address was when I lived there. It’s kind of awful. I still can’t get over the fact that I don’t remember my time living there at all. I really don’t understand how this experience was just entirely erased from my memory. My mom has told me the main facts of the situation, but…it’s just weird. I wasn’t having electric shock therapy while I lived there, so I don’t think that’s the reason I don’t remember. Or maybe it is. Maybe it was a delayed thing? I know I did have ECT around the time I lived there (as in before that event and after that event, in the surrounding years). I’ve tried recalling the information several ways in therapy, and none have worked so far.

There’s other events of my life that have been erased somehow. I went to Ireland with my dad/siblings before he died in high school, and sadly I don’t remember that trip at all. That one I really don’t understand, because I didn’t have ECT until about two years after that event (and I hadn’t had it before). I’d just like to know why my brain erased it.

Moving on, though. I’m pretty tired, and hoping tomorrow won’t be shit as well. Until then, I’ll netflix and chill.

I will add, I’ve decided to take advantage of the Starbucks school reimbursement. I was accepted to ASU online for the fall semester. I looked at the classes they provide there, and I can’t wait. They have so many amazing class options! I want to take so many. Maybe I will, just for the heck of it.

That’s all.

-May 1, 2017

Where Did The Time Go?

I’ve been struggling emotionally lately. I’ve been feeling a lot of anger…but more at myself than anything else. When something bothers me, I don’t know why, but I hardly ever say anything. It’s so automatic that five minutes later, I’m wondering why I said nothing. I had several opportunities this past week to speak my truth, and I naturally skipped out. So I am left with myself, laying in bed at night, hating that I have no courage. Hating that it’s so damn automatic for me to just shut up. I don’t even know that I think to say anything in the moment. I just…freeze.

Anxiety is building, anger is building, and feeling trapped is almost consistent in my life right now. I want to have five minutes to myself, yet I’m always caught up doing something. I feel like I need a retreat. To just take a few days to myself. I’m too overwhelmed with this fast pace of life. Especially since I don’t feel like I’m getting closer to anything. I’m just gliding.

On the more positive side, I applied to volunteer for the Crisis Text Line. I would spend four hours (or more) a week with them, answering the texts people send in. I could see it being somewhat difficult, just with my nature of wanting to save people…but they provide a lot of training and assistance, so I think I can learn how to be effective in this role. I’m really looking forward to it…it’s something that actually works towards what I believe is my purpose (helping/inspiring other people). After going through treatment for seven years, and going from hell to the top, I’ve always thought I made it through so that I can help other people do the same. So…maybe this will help me feel more positive about my own life.

I don’t know what else to say. I will try to update more, I suppose.

-March 31, 2017

When You Read a Book That Sparks a Light Inside of You

I bought a book the other day from Barnes and Noble. Well, I bought several, but this one was read first. It’s called, “The Princess Saves Herself In This One” by Amanda Lovelace. While there are several pages I have tagged, and I did make a word document out of all my favorite passages/quotes, I think I’ll talk about these two today:

Pages 96-97: Fuck the idea that there is such a thing as destiny, that there exists some kind of mysterious master plan, that there is a god who simply does not give us anything we cannot handle. The pain did not make me a better person. It did not teach me not to take anything for granted. It did not teach me anything except how to be afraid to love anyone. I am far too young to be so goddamn broken & if I could go back in time & give myself her childhood back, I would. –what was the point?

Page 142: I let myself know that my life doesn’t have to be over just because theirs are & I went ahead & painted the sun back into my sky. –I am allowed to live my life

I’ve been working on this a lot- living my life even though my dad can no longer live his. Living my life despite the fact that several people have lost theirs in the past few years. Living my life despite the fact that I have no idea why it was them and not me.

I’ve always been so angry with the world about this topic. Why did God take my dad? There was no good reason. No one can argue with me that, like she said, there is some “greater plan”. I bought into that for a bit. I believed that there was some reason for everything, some explanation I wasn’t aware of. I thought, maybe it’s (I don’t have a good word, because “tolerable” and “okay” are not it…so fill in that blank yourself), because now my parents aren’t fighting. I don’t have to live a life at home in constant fear. I don’t have to feel on-edge at every moment, because there won’t be any more of the screaming, the banging, the tears, the wasted energy…the hope that maybe one day it’ll stop. Because it has. It has stopped. Silence has greeted this house, for once.

Then the battle began- did I do this? Every year, when I blew out my birthday candles, I wished my parents would stop fighting. I went to bed hoping that tomorrow, things would change. That the chaos would cease.

I battled feeling like God misinterpreted my prayers, to telling myself that I’m really not that important/this can’t be my fault, to being angry with God for doing this, to disbelief in any higher power listening to me anyway.

And that’s where I remain now.

It’s hard for me to believe in any higher power loving me, taking care of me, watching over me, or giving any justice in this world. My dad was a good person. He was smart, he was funny, and no, I will not agree that it was “his time”. He could have done so much more in this world.

I spent years trying to work through this mess. I nearly killed myself in the process. Yes, I am “together” today, for all intents and purposes. I’m alive. I have learned things. But I feel like I could have learned them another way. It doesn’t take my dad dying to make this happen.

People die- that’s life. I understand that concept. But I don’t agree with how it happened for me. I don’t agree with a lot of deaths that happen. It’s not fair. And no, I don’t care that that is a childish statement. Sometimes, it’s just not.

I had to learn the second quote eventually, though. I had to let go of a lot of that anger, the “it’s not fair” attitude. While that statement remains true, I learned I cannot live out that statement. I cannot ruin my life based on the fact that it wasn’t fair that my dad died.

I still hold some of that anger inside of me. It’s extremely difficult to ditch all of it. And I did learn that I have to “paint the sun back into my sky”. I can’t live my life in anger with something that I can never personally change. I can’t will my dad back to life…but I can progress in my own life and try to make him proud.

Sometimes I forget that intention. The more I was sucked into the eating disorder, the more I believed I had already disappointed my dad- and there was no way out. I imagined him looking down on me, wishing I wasn’t his daughter. Or worse, not even recognizing me.

I was someone completely different after he died. And I am someone completely different now. Some things stay the same, and I know he can see that. All things I learned from him…people-watching, cat loving, getting lost in books, writing poetry…they’re still there. And I’m proud of that. And if I’m proud of that, I think he would be too.

My dad was an amazing person, when it comes down to it. I got the pleasure of spending 16 years with him. While I have a long list of regrets, I always have the love in my heart that I need to believe he can feel. I choose to believe that if he knocked on my door today, we would smile together instead of feeling shame.

I still don’t agree that death like this is necessary…but the ability to keep going despite it, is.

-February 22, 2017