This. This has not been a good week. I started my vacation from my day job (or night job, as it were) on Tuesday and I was expecting nine days of awesomeness and bliss. Currently we are on Day Six and I have yet to be smacked upside the head by The Awesome or The Bliss.
I also have blogger’s block, which isn’t helping matters. I suppose it’s not really bloggers block, I have tons of things to write about, it’s just a general lack of motivation and a convincing of myself that no one cares what I have to say, so why bother? (That’s totally not fair to you because you’re here reading this, so you must care a little)
I debated upon waiting to blog when I was in a better mood, but it’s been a few days now and sometimes the best way is to just get it out of my system, hope it works, and then move on. There’s something about putting your “stuff” out into the world that is therapeutic. Maybe it helps me feel like I’m not in it alone, maybe it just feels good to get it out (I’ve had the tendency to bottle up my emotions, ask me how well that works). So forgive me as I allow my feelings to dance around the keyboard in an incoherent manner.
I’ve been focusing on Self Care the last several days. Yummy coffee. Peanut butter cookies. Fuzzy socks. Warm blankets. Hot baths. Fingerless gloves with racoon faces on them. My special happy-Panda hat. (I’m wearing it in the picture, I can’t decide if the picture is cute or creepy, a bit of both methinks, and it makes me giggle) Romance novels in bed. Naps whenever I want them. Chinese food from my favorite place. My favorite pajama pants with stars all over them. Sleeping in until I wake up naturally. A little bit of retail therapy. Walks in the morning sunshine. Jamming out to music that makes me want to move and dance and smile.
I’ve tried to have a positive attitude about things but each time something knocks me back a bit, I slide down a little bit more and it’s harder to pick myself back up again (pssst… secret here. The secret to success in anything is getting back up after you’ve failed.) I’ve also re-remembered a very important lesson.
There is a difference between Self Care and Avoidance.
I have also been playing a lot of World of Warcraft, watching a lot of TV, and listening to music to fill any of the silent spaces in between. Silence is my enemy because it affords me the time to think about things that I don’t want to think about. I buy into the delusion that if I fill up my day with self love and self care then the bad stuff will go away. It doesn’t work like that (shocker) but that hasn’t stopped me from trying. I’ve talked about how I’m an A + B = C kind of gal, even though life continues to teach me otherwise. I was always bad at math.
Lately, I’ve been falling back into old patterns. I’ve spent more time playing World of Warcraft than I have anything else this vacation. The reason why is encompassed by one word: Escapism. In my younger days when I wasseverely depressed, I would play for hours upon hours because it gave me something to do that wasn’t moping. Since embarking on my life transformation, I only play a few hours a week and that is because I have found something (many things) that are more worth my time and that make me feel fulfilled in a wonderful and nourishing way. I realized I’m using it as an escape (again) but I still do it. It takes so much effort to deal with my “stuff” and I’ve run out of effort. (Do you ever get that way, when it’s easier to ignore your problems than to deal with them?)
My first problem: Overwhelm
I’m sure you already knew this, (or could guess!) but I am a HSP, which stands for Highly Sensitive Person. What this means is that I am sensitive to a lot of things and I feel a lot of things, and sometimes those things discombobulate and overwhelm me. This ties in to my dislike of being around lots of people for long periods of time. I am a solitary person my nature (Kinda like a badger. Fun fact, Hufflepuff was always my chosen Hogwarts House), so when a friend of mine asked me to come over for a gaming session of Dungeons and Dragons, I initially said no. However, some part of my brain decided that I should give it a go (silly brain, oh silly, silly, brain). The last time I played was five years ago, and back then I was hell-bent on proving to everyone (and myself) that I was normal and could be social. (Being teased about my anti-socialness gave me something to prove.)
Today, I know that I am not “normal” when it comes to socialization. I accept it, embrace it, and most days I’m totally okay with it. I can hang out with my bestie and his kids and be perfectly fine. I can hang out with other people in twos or threes for a bit, have a fun conversation and not bat an eyelash or really think about being anxious or uncomfortable. I don’t, however, like inviting people over to my place (It’s sacred Goddess-Land) and I don’t like going over to other people’s houses (It feels harder to flee). Which pretty much means I will talk to you at work and hang out with you on my breaks and lunches if I like you but that’s all you’re gonna get unless you are special. I’ve learned my boundaries and I’ve done a good job enforcing them.
So when my friend invited me over to play, I said yes, and I spent the first six hours of my vacation at his house, with seven other people, a few that I had never met before, and most of them smoked (I really can’t stand cigarette smoke), plus I had to you know… talk. (That’s kinda the point of D&D, in case you didn’t know.) I really had a good time, don’t get me wrong, but in the end it wasn’t for me. Halfway through I just wanted to go home (I’d have clicked my heels if they had been red) but I don’t drive so I had no way to get home without ruining the game for someone else, and I was having fun, it just unsettled me. I wanted to burrow back into my nice happy hidey hole. It was out of my comfort zone (it’s good to venture out every now and then, really it is) and it left me feeling drained, ungrounded, and guilty that I had had fun but felt no desire to do it again next week. Which leads me to my next point which is going to sound so contradictory.
My second problem: Well hullo there Loneliness
I tell my Tribe all of the time that there is a difference between being alone and being lonely and you can have one but not the other. Most of the time I am alone (and I like it that way) but lately, I’ve been feeling the loneliness (The sadness and discontent of being alone). I’m a single lady and most of the time it doesn’t bother me all that much. I live a pretty fulfilling life (by my own definition) but sometimes a girl wants some companionship and some romance. I’ve been in that mood. I’m sure anyone who has ever been single knows that mood. The one where you find yourself yearning for something that you don’t have, daydreaming and fantasizing (all while singing “All By Myself” Bridget Jones’ style in your head). That mood. Now you might suggest that I remedy that situation in the obvious manner, by finding someone, but I don’t and I won’t because I sincerely feel like that is not the right path for me (at least right now) no matter how lonely I feel. So it’s just one of those things that I have to wade through or wait till it passes.
Since I’m on the topic anyway, my number one reason for not wanting a relationship is fear. Every single relationship I’ve had, or tried to have, has involved me turning into a person that I don’t really like. I get very clingy, and I tend to put everything that I have and everything that I am into the other person. I don’t just lose myself, I give myself completely away so that there is very little of Dominee left. I’m not 100% sure I’ve grown out of that behavior and have no urge to make someone my guinea pig so that I can find out. I need to have my own life and my own space and I feel like to do that, I have to be single for the time being. (Yay for self-awareness)
My third problem: Goodbye control of emotions.
Now I am pretty good at controlling my emotions and redirecting them before they get crazy out of control. I used to have pretty big anger issues, I’d even call them rage issues. When someone made me angry I had the tendency to scream and cry and throw around insults like there was no tomorrow. I have a three inch scar on my leg from having a hissy fit that involved kicking and throwing things in my living room. I cracked my bathroom wall once. I broke dishes on purpose. That’s really just the tip of the iceberg, I used to get Hulk-Angry. When I got sad I would lay on the floor and cry for hours on end until I couldn’t breathe, until I broke out in hives, until my eyelids were so swollen I looked like I had been punched. I was a bit (a lot) of a Drama Queen. Honestly it wasn’t really that, I had just never learned how to feel, in the intensity that I was feeling. That’s really something they should teach in school, some people aren’t born with the know-how. It took a lot of work to learn how to cope but cope I have (for the most part).
The other day someone did something to me that I found rude and petty, and my first reaction was to tell them what a bitch they were being. Now, I’ve talked about how I used to be pretty verbally and emotionally abusive in the past so when my first, automatic, reaction was name calling, I felt a lot of different things. Fear, disgust, shame, fear, and more fear. I don’t want to lose control and I don’t want to have my impulses take control over what I know is okay and not okay. I know better than that, so I do better than that. That moment made my tummy hurt.
All in all, this has just not been my week.
I’m questioning my business path a bit. My heater crapped out and maintenance hasn’t come to fix it yet. I’m resistant to allowing myself to have a good cry for fear that’s exactly when they will show up. I’ve spent the last 24 hours with cold fingers and toes. The first two romance novels I tried to read weren’t very good so I gave up on them. My friend has blown me off for fun vacation stuffs twice this week. I feel lame because no one ever texts me. I have a rash on my chest which I think is stress induced. I have tons of business things to do, no motivation to get it done, and then I feel so guilty for not being my usually peppy business self. And each time I start feeling this way I’m afraid it’s going to last forever and ever and ever.
It’s really not a good feeling.
But I’ve got to keep going.
I still have vacation left. I can still try to make the most of it. I can pick myself up, dust myself off, and keep moving in the right direction.
But really I just want to hide in my shell until it feels safe to come out again. But that’s old-Dominee speaking, because there’s always a reason to retreat, there’s always a reason to hide, there’s always one itty bitty thing that’s not going right, and if I retreat at every opportunity then I’ll never get anywhere. My advice to myself: Go slowly, think slowly, be slowly, but don’t retreat.
This morning has been the most pleasant one so far and nothing has changed except my willingness to deal with it. To sit down and write this. To think the unpleasant things. To face them head on with a na-na, na-na, boo-boo and my tongue sticking out.