Saturday, November 25, 2017

a collection of my mind lint

Folks, lets just do.

*gets out sharpie*

Holidays

Pens in *holimonthandthreefourths*

Sneaking up on this inevitable conclusion is irking the editor in me.

When I was a kid it was holiday.

Then without me noticing it warped into holidays.

We know its going there, lets give it that final shove.

LOL.

surgery in 4 days. Everyone at work is doing there damndest to make me sick. Back off boogaloo! It has taken me 16+ years to work up the nerve to have this surgery, we have invested over 6000$...it's HAPPENING.

Writers have to write. We are driven. I have a story that is now inserting itself into my dreams.  I'm like  "I hear you man! I will put you to paper, just hang on!."

Now that my physical and mental heath stuff is calming down, I'm turning my attention to getting my children back on track. I've missed them. While I have been sick we all drifted apart as a family. I have the energy to step back up and be a interactive parent again.

Odd thought. My life cycles every 17 years. Due for a cycle. hmmm.

I feel like I should end this blabbering with a poem...but I will spare you and end with a peeking Poofer.



Thursday, November 16, 2017

still kicking

After 14 days I finally got well.

Turned 52 without incident.

dying to blog, have a ton of stories to input.

as well as a dream that was spectacular. rattlesnake kittens? why are there not venomous cats?


Thursday, November 2, 2017

Vloging for a change *trigger for anxiety riddled sick as a dog babbling*

I was scheduled for rectocele surgery on Nov 1st. and a shit storm of things caused it not to happen.

Surgery info: https://intermountainhealthcare.org/ext/Dcmnt?ncid=520693034

I know you all will want to see the before and after pictures right?

BWHAHAHAHHA! you think she's kidding don't you?

Because of the delay you all get to suffer and listen to my whine. Your excited I know.

One of the things I had to do for surgery prep was not take anything for pain, and no muscle relaxers and nothing for anxiety. So my pain level shot off the scale and my mental health deteriorated. Like really really bad.

So I thought I would give you a front row seat to my mind.

Might want a seat belt, just saying...






Good lord, that sound was SO LOUD, it just filled every nook of the house!




Friday, September 29, 2017

cupboard cocaine

Sept 29, 2000 I had been married one day. I went to the store and bought groceries. I  had brought no food with me into the marriage, so I needed to replenish all the baking items for our cupboard. I bought all the basic flour, sugar, baking powder, etc as I had used it all the time on the farm.

I ended up never using the baking powder after I got married. I just never had need to do the type of baking I did in the past.

Every bleeping summer I would clean the cupboards and see the baking powder. Laugh and leave it in there.

This August 2017...I finally tossed it out. Laughing and commenting, "for pete's sake its 17 years old!"

Me today - decides to make a old, childhood favorite, a yummy chocolate cake from scratch.

looks at recipe: 1 1/2 tsp baking powder.

The humor of this is not lost on me. 

a little while longer

Every so often I entertain the idea of working day shift. You know like normal people.

I have worked off shifts since having children to avoid having to put them in daycare. It has meant time away from hubby. Lost  family times on weekends. Sleepy groggy shift from not getting enough sleep. The whole nine yards.

It wears on me occasionally, and the thoughts of switching to days creeps in, as it did this week.

It's funny how I am always provide me with a clear answer on this every time.

After being asleep only about an hour, the phone laying on my hubby's pillow wakes me.

I fumble through the paralyzing grips of sleep to grab it and answer as coherently as I can.

"Hello?"

"Mama, my lunch isn't in my back pack."

"Okay puddy I am on my way to bring it to you."

I roll out of bed and toss on what ever is on the floor next to the bed and find and deliver the awol lunch bag to my daughter waiting at the office.

yes 

yes I hear you, "your needed still to be available for the kids during the day." Yup. This is why I work nights. So I am available to do my main job.

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

one last look...

I've been in long term care now for 34 years. One thing I will never tire of is when a dying person, who has been unconscious with unfocused eyes, suddenly swims to the surface and their eyes clear and lock onto yours.

It doesn't happen all the time, so when it does it makes my heart skip beats.

It is almost as if they suddenly know all the answers and are trying to tell them to you.

Sometimes if feels like they are seeing their god.

Other times its like they are staring lovingly at their reflection in a magic mirror.

It's an interesting footnote in my life to know that so many peoples last thing they see on earth is...




Friday, September 15, 2017

Say goodbye

This is old.  Like 2013 old.  An online friend of 10 years just vanished over night. We all struggled with the loss. I wrote this at the time. We later reconnected and learned what happened.

As I am approaching my surgery date, I am having gut pings to "say goodbye"

I know totally irrational, but hey that is how my mind works. I think I may do just that. Wouldn't you want to hear all the wonderful things your loved one has to say about you?

I don't do these to be morbid. It blesses me to see in print just how blessed I am to have so many people who I love and admire in my life.

*****************************************

Pitching to the left I struggle through the familiar darkness. My path uneven at the moment. Needing to sit quietly by your light I scan the landscape. Locating it I trudge toward it.

I find your lantern firmly nailed to the fence post.

My own lantern slides from my hand.  I stand quietly, like a lost child.

slowly I reach up and hold your lanterns handle. Your presence still strong. Your love of us still warming the handle.

 I stand quietly bawling.

Not for me.

Partly for you, partly for all those hurting souls out there who will miss the change to meet you and find comfort and understanding in your gentle words.

Being a writer, my mind wants an answer, and not finding one
it fills in the blanks.

Two possible paths here stretch before you, one you were layed off. Two your working silently behind the scenes.

Either way, my friend = pain for you. To suddenly be disconnected from the voices of all the souls you moderate.

I pray you are working quietly behind the scenes. The thought of you being unemployed and facing that panic and uncertainty, just breaks my heart.

If that is the case, then to you offer this advice.

You will be okay, Don't allow the fear and uncertainty to stop you. This moment in time is just another beast. You have fought bigger ones. Clear your head so you can hear your heart, and it will lead you to your next job.

I pray you will find a job that will offer you financial security and love you as much as you were loved here. I hope in your next job you are blessed to have a Paja working there too. I hear they are nice to work with.

And if your path is still with XXXXXXX, well that changes things.

To that time line I would offer this advice.

Take a deep breath.  Change is never easy, and with big corporations and there love of monkeying with stuff, you had better fasten the latches on your life jacket. In cases like this, you must go with the flow. Hang on and do what you need to do to keep your job. Be loyal to your own needs, and who signs your check.

We know you love us. We know what ever the path is, you are hurting. You are grieving. *hands you a tissue* It will ease with time my friend. You may feel isolated and alone, but we got your back sister. Wraps the SA pink blanket firmly around you.

I want you to know that "change" isn't a friendship breaker. That you will be my friend until one of us breaths no more.

My offer to do a print run of all my children's books for your grand babies will never expire. All you need is ask.

I'm still here. The board is still here. Your SI family is still here. Right here where you tacked your lantern.

when you posted about the lights of the board. I got an uneasy feeling in my gut. Reading between the lines like I do I picked up a second meaning. Intended or not, it came across as a salute and a "letting go"

Thank you for that.

Thank you for all your hard work over the years.

Thank you for always hearing me....all of me's.

Thank you for cleaning up the olives I dropped all over the SI and SA boards.

Thank you for laughing at my silly stuff.

Thank you for drying my tears.

and thank you for doing such an incredible job over the years.

I will look for you at the cat park, the redwoods, the ocean, and all the other magical places out there, because I know you will do just as you commanded us to do. Shine on.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

When TOO ask about someones scars (SI discussion)

Good Gawd...you just can't please me sometimes.

I just posted about when its NOT okay to ask about someones scars and here I am writing the opposite today!

Was with one of the kids at an initial pediatrician visit and she pulled me aside to discuss my child's case.

As we were talking her eyes kept going to my scars then back to me.

It was distracting.

I really wanted to hold up my arm and say, "stop for a minute, look, satisfy your curiosity and them ask me about them so we can go back to our conversation, without distractions."

I don't normally wear long sleeves, that is a personal style choice, I have never really cared for them even before I had scars.  I have found as I have grown and am out doing things with my children (like face to face with teachers/doctors etc) I will consciously consider long sleeves or a sweatshirt to wear. Not to hide my scars, but to project and image that will protect my children from being subjected to "OOOOH, your mama is crazy, she's all scarred up!" Also from having to answer questions from their friends.

My battle with living with SIV (self inflicted violence) is not their fight.

My mission to be open about it also my decision, not theirs.

I do get gut pings when I choose to conceal them. Not sure why. I don't go around actively flaunting them. Honestly I forget there there most of the time. As I did that day I mentioned earlier.

It was the doctors looks that reminded me, 'oh hey, I'm covered in scars.'

Ack, I hadn't even remembered to think about covering them up for this appointment.

I think how I handled it was the right way to do it. I didn't address it. I kept the conversation on subject and ignored her glances. There is a right time to ask about scars, and that wasn't the situation.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

back from walkabout

I'm so excited!

My writers mind has come back from where ever the heck it went off to back in August of 2016!!

Which means I can finally finish Skinned!!

For a while there I thought I was finished as a writer.  Which was freaking me out because if I end up a crippled old woman, that would have been my only skill I could use to earn a living with.

Well in my dreams anyway.

My mind has returned with a new portfolio of story ideas, which I am trying to lasso and herd into my round pen so I can sort through them.

Back to square one ...I'm having to stop and get the bucks out again. LOL!



Friday, September 8, 2017

Mennope

Ladies let talk menopause.

In the text books its pretty cut and dry:

There is a period of time you are going to experience Peri-Menopausal symptoms and then after a year without a period you reach Menopause.

yeah. Riiiiiiiiiight.

They left out a few of the stages along the way.

Like Menorunonandon. Pronounced:  meno-run-on-and-on. Defined as, when your period just refuses to stop in your 50's and just keeps coming as you are approaching 60.

And my favorite one, Mennope. Pronounced: men-NOPE. Defined as when your period stops for 10-11 months and you get really fricking excited that this is IT and your marking days off on the calender and planning the party annnnnnnd your period shows up.

I'm thinking that menopause is the right term for this. Your periods just pause for a bit...they don't ever stop.

Sure, we can keep the terminology "menopause"  in the queue of the grand scale of our menstrual cycles, but we need to be clear that after all is said and done there are these final stages.

Menostopitjuststopit! and MenoIcan'tbeleiveI'mbuyingtamponsateightyyearsold

show and tell

Sorry regular readers I am hijacking my own blog this morning for some show and tell for my physical therapist's. Yup that's plural cause my pelvis is so &%$#@ up unique it needs its own entourage.


N-

It's Thursday night at 9:50 pm and I am just now feeling better.  While wed session didn't flare up the groin pain this week, its sure making my back scream bloody murder. LOL.




picture one - original injury 12-25-1993


picture two - check up x-ray of repair job early 1994



picture 3 - cat-scan June 2017



picture 4 - still from cat-scan - hips/sockets



picture 5 - the reason why my back is screaming bloody murder Dx'd with herniated disks L4/L5/S1 in 1992, and it has just deteriorated over the years. I typically keep my back in neutral position or it makes my back spasm/cramp like crazy. Do you love that starburst from the plate/screws? which will make MRI-ing the groin pain area challenging/impossible?



picture 6 - the spot on the cat-scan where the groin pain is. Your looking at my left hip/side view.  if you go to where the cursor is on the picture and go to the right a bit the abdominal wall goes down and looks like it is split in two. Follow it down to where it goes back together that triangular shape under it (above the horizontal black line - which is the distortion from the metal plate sitting on the pubic bone) is where the pain is.

I have a copy of the CT if you are interested in seeing it.

The rest of my readers can get a copy and play Dr. House for the low price of just 23 payments of  $19.95.

"That's not too bad." SI discussion

My daughter graciously  lets me be a member on her chat server. I am not about to allow my 10 year old free range on the internet. The members know I am her mother and "an old person."

They feel free to tag me if I need to be aware of stuff.

One such day I was summoned to the board.

I usually just read along and don't comment unless need/asked.  Partly because I am old and slow and can't type that fast anymore.

This night one teen member was upset and had been drinking.

She was bragging about how much she had been drinking and then posted a graphic picture of her arm that had a two inch scratch on it.

She: "I ended up scratching myself."

other poster: "That's not too bad."

I cringed. Ugh, dude. that is the worst thing you can say to a self injurer. They are hurting and showing you the proof. They are exposing there soul! They are looking for validation and help all in one bloody scream...and you're blow them off by saying,  "That's not too bad." Your words are devastating, hurtful and cruel.

Then I realized.

The other poster had no idea it was self inflicted.

People don't go around assuming others self injure. People don't recognize self inflicted injuries.

But it goes back even deeper then that.

We as a people have never been taught how to correctly respond to others pain.

Think about it. When a toddler falls the first thing the mother does is pick them up and tells them "You're okay. You're okay."

Mother applies bandage to scrapped knee, kisses it, "all better now."

Father to son after a bike riding lesson ends with a crash, "shake it off son."

We grow up being taught pain is ours, but it can be turned off by others at their will. Even more basically, if your wounded and in pain, get up and keep with the pack or the predators will pick you off.

One of the first times Richard knocked off my chair in therapy was when he looked at my scabbed arm and said with quiet compassion, "That looks like a lot of pain."

I use that now. Cause holy crap if a person is to a point that they are reaching for self injury as a coping skill, they are indeed in "a lot of pain."

It doesn't matter if they are covering in 3rd degree burns or have a paper cut. The act of self injury is what your should be responding too, not the wound.

It's not as easy as it sounds. Person one show up at the ER  with 100 razor blade slices running up their arm. Person two shows up with a black eye and a bruise on their forehead. You can guess who is going to get more intensive treatment and make it pass the triage stage first?

I sought treatment for my burns when they were still little. Like the size of a pencil eraser. Got blown off by the medical staff. They kept increasing in size until I found the magical size that got the attention of the staff. I might not have such large burn scars now if my tiny ones had been taken seriously from the get go.

There is no easy answer to this dilemma. You can't assume an injury is self inflicted....and in certain cases you can't assume its not.

When people ask about my large burn scar on my arm, I can say honestly. "I burned it."

They usually follow up with, "How?"

This shows their minds are not even going the self injury route.

I answer back, "I. burned. it."

Reaching back to the conversation with the self injurer on the chat channel.  Before I could even get my brain into response mode, the conversation direction shifted. The girl shut down and closed off.

As most self injures do when there pain is ignored/not seen.

I believe in this day and age of online chats groups, that starting in middle school, the kids should be given the knowledge on how to do age appropriate online support. So when faced with something like this they can have some skills to fall back on.

After a summer of reading their chats, I can tell you kids are reaching out and trying to get help from their peers. I have seen they trying to support each other though anxiety attacks, depression, drinking, suicidal thoughts, etc, ect. The want and need to support each other is there.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Employee of the month

There are many things in this world that you should never turn your back on. The tide, bonfires, angry bulls and night shifts with ballot boxes.

Oh the wicked wicked fun we used to have on the night shift at HIHO. Heh...and someday when the statues of limitations has run out I will tell you all about it.

It was 7 people alone with 8 1/2 hours worth of time and only 5 of it needed to do the job.  We filled with rest of the time with various things to keep our selves awake.

We read, wrote, talked, did group therapy and  psych experiments on each other and got into mischief.

Once, I came up the hall from my lunch break to find the rest of the night shift stifling hyena type laughter, while scribbling furiously on little pieces of paper.

"what are you up to" I commented placing my jacket on my chair.

Terry looked up. "we're voting on employee of the month."

They all cackled like witches over the brew.

Liz glanced up and filled me in. "you saw the new employee of the month parking spot they are making out front?"

I nodded. Couldn't miss it. They were designating the prized closest spot to the building for the employee of the month.

"Well we thought it would be funny if the first person who could use it, didn't have a car!"

I laughed at the simple irony that would create.

"That is brilliant! Who are you stuffing the ballot box for?" I smiled reaching for my pen to help.

Liz glanced back up over her glasses, "You."

It took us all a good 10 minutes to stop laughing.

The entire night shift deserved and Oscar for there "wow! Paja won?!" surprised performance at the all staff in-service when they announced the winner that month.

It took all my concentration not to heeHAW out loud as I accepted the award because, in the wake of the applause as I approached the administrator, I head the bossy boots of the day shift comment "she doesn't even HAVE a car!!"

My little employee of the month plaque lived in the kitchen drawer out on the farm for years. It always provoked giggles when I would come across it and the memory would surface.

Many years later when I was legitimately honored as employee of the month at RG I couldn't even attend the presentation. There was just no way I could have done that without collapsing into a hysterical belly laughing heap on the floor....besides, it wasn't right for me to get that award...I had a car.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

When is it okay to ask about someones scars?

For FIFTH time this summer I have been asked by a medical professional about my scars while in a vulnerable position.

*adds, 'blogging about when it IS appropriate to ask abuse survivors about their scars', to my list of things to do today.*


This is going to sound a tad bit hostile, and that because I'm a bit stirred up about it. I will make nice in another post and do a polite one.

Then again maybe not.

This why I speak up about self injury! For the love of pete if I was not as well wrapped as I am this would have triggered the hell out of me!

Medical professionals: please listen.

CLOSELY

The number one most common denominator among self injurers is a history of sexual abuse!!

Self injury is about control. (I determine when and where I feel pain)

Self injury is deep pain speaking in blood. Pain so deep it can't be translated into words.

Self injures can be very self conscious of their scars. Going to a doctor and having them be revealed during an exam is a threatening, terrifying, nauseating, anxiety provoking thought. Terrifying enough to stop people from seeking medical help.

So when you ask someone who is 1/2 naked, laying on a table, while you are standing over them and or touching them YOU ARE VIOLATING ALL FOUR OF THE THINGS LISTED ABOVE!

YOU MAYBE THE FIRST PERSON TO EVER SEE THESE SCARS!!

What you need to do is take note of them and then AFTER they are dressed again and you are BOTH sitting at a even level, ask about them.

But NOT like this:

"So tell me about your scars."

Just because you have an MD after your name doesn't mean you get to have access to painful memories via a quick icepick lobotomy to satisfy your curiosity. Don't violate the person.

Ask gently.  "May I ask about your scars?"

If they say no, BACKTHEHELLOFF it's okay to follow up with, "This is a safe place if you ever want to talk about them."

Plant the seed of trust and openness, by just making yourself available.

Years ago the orthopedic doctor who repaired my pelvis did it SPOT ON:

Dr Namechangedforprivacy shut the door to my room and paused for second, then took a deep breath and come over and sat on the edge of my hospital bed. It was 4 hours after surgery and I was finally awake enough to talk to him.

"I saw your scars during surgery and I wanted to talk to you about them." He said quietly, gesturing to my abdomen. "can you tell me what happened?"

I took in a ragged breath and launched into the story.

He just wanted to make sure I was not in danger or in an abusive situation.

So I know it can be done!

DO IT!

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Skipping stone

This story is for Butter.

Iye cant sweep...wets see if Dogdancing will tells me a bedtime storewee.

Dog?

She stirs and opens her dark sapphire eyes. "hello little one."

You has bin sweeping. Iye can't sweep. Wills you tells mes a bedtime story?

She smiles. "You wish to hear a forest story?"

oh yes!

"Very well, come, young one" she says opening her arms to invite her in.

When the wiggling has ceased, and the little one was all eyes, she begin.

"In the forest there are guardians like me. Made from jagged stones, crumbled rocks of uneven sizes, all crammed together and molded by a life time of pain. But did you know there are other rocks in the forest? Rocks found on the banks of the river, and the shores of the ponds.

Flat ones. Smooth ones. They are special ones, made for one purpose. They're skipping stones.

So special that people hunt a life time for the perfect one. Combing through the rocks for just the right one.

It has to fit just so in your hand....and feel right.

These rocks are shaped by movement, time, and knowing what is right. Much like guardians they too are not born, they are made.

Year after year they tumble and tussle with the seasons waiting for that special day someone comes searching for them.

When the time is right someone will come. They will slowly and carefully go along the shore and pick up rock after rock and hold them in there hand, each heart beat asking, ...is this the one?

Is this the one that is right for this purpose? To skip across the water? Will this one make it all the way across? Will it fly just so?

The goal to effortlessly soar over the water touching it  every so often only to set ripples in motion as it skips across.

Some make it across to clatterly rejoin their brethren on the other side. Others fold under the water and take their ripples to the bottom.

...and some...some have legs. They walk among us and fling themselves where they are needed. Sending out ripples that are far reaching. You can't find them easily. They must be hunted for and found.

And sometimes they find you.

You are blessed if a skipping stone flings themselves for you. Pay attention to the ripples they leave on your life."

Dogdancing closed her eyes and leaned back. "They are known to fling themselves at monsters to protect others."

Hows do day have the courage to do dat?

Dogdancing smiled as she hugged her tighter, "little one, it isn't courage that gives them the strength...Skipping stones have pure hearts."

How they det pure hearts?

Dog pulled the blanket up and tucked little one in. "I already told you.  movement, time, and knowing what is right."

Monday, August 7, 2017

surrender

okay life you win. Ima just gunna lie here and let you trample me into the dirt.

Since you have taken my legs, I just can't get up anymore.

Seriously, this fucking heat is killing me. I have had nose bleeds the last 4 days from having the AC going.

I hear people say "I'm at the end of my rope." and I have always wondered 'how did you luck out to be given a rope?'

all I have is a worn out 3 inch piece of frayed yarn that has multiple knots in it from being tied together. Its limp, damp and slips through my hands, there is nothing to hold onto.

P-doc wants to put me on an antidepressant.  We just had a disastrous 3 day attempt at trying Neurontin again.  It increased my appetite, made me fat and hostile.

but it took away my nerve pain.

You bastard, taunting me with pain relief, but turning my head into a monster.

I don't even have the guts to try an antidepressant again. fuck.

I can't risk anymore weight gain.

I am battling with my selves as it is. Humans can live 3 weeks without food...since I can't exercise, my mind is coming up with the only viable weight loss solution. Starve it off.

Its not like I am going to miss anything, since I can't taste anything anyway.

Crabby, can't sleep, headache, bloody nose...and the ever constant pain.

just....done today.

and maybe tomorrow too.

Thursday, July 27, 2017

puddles of darkness

My life

an off kilter path

running, while chained.

puddles of darkness

grabbing my feet as I go

sinking

slowly

my voice choking as the madness rushes in

I slip silently under the surface

broken

unfixable

yet I hold the dark water

and spill not a drop

but the light, oh the light

it runs out of me

through my cracks

lost

returning again and again to the

puddles of darkness

my reflection

cries with me

lost together

soul bound tumble weeds.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

interesting observation (SIV discussion)

While blogging on how to support people who self injure this morning it dawned on me, that perhaps one contributing factor to my increased suicidal thoughts is my inability to injure right now.

as in my coping skills include all these....

tell someone (ie vocalize what is going on) [blogging don't count it has to be verbalized to another person in person]
exercise until fatigued
listen to cry tape
medication
binge eat
retail therapy
blog
go to ER
etc
etc
and
waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay
at
the
bottom:
self injure
suicide

Even though I work my butt off to avoid self injury, it is still there, and probably will always be because of the last item on the list. I will do EVERYTHING in my power to keep my self safe and alive. (so if your reading my blog just waiting for me to off my selves, your wasting your time, I've fought like a mutherFing wild cat to stay alive 51 years, nothing is going to change that. I'm highly competitive and my depression will NOT win.)

Anyway, chief among prednisone's side effects are "slow wound healing" and "increased infections"

um, yeah, that is kinda keeping the self injury urges at bay. That and not sure how all the new doctors will take to treating a self injurer. I have found it is one thing to see my scars and hear how I am a self injure and an entirely different thing to see actual wounds on me.

When in therapy with Richard we talked about the self injury from day one. I showed him my scars I talked about methods and triggers. I thought he got it.

Months into therapy after I injured and told him during our session, he asked to see the wound. I peeled back the bandage and showed him. The look on his face clearly indicated he hadn't gotten it.
Shit got real very fast.

Don't have the energy to deal with that, got enough on my plate with the new diagnosis.

So consciously or unconsciously, SIV got crossed off the coping skill list.  Which makes the next thing on the list, slide up.

self injure
suicide

Which may account for the mental bombardment of urges going on this year.

Why don't I just keep self injury crossed of the list and work on exiling suicide as well?

Cause, I know that the self injury is crossed off only temporarily. It's easy for me to do that if I have injured in recent memory. I have gotten the burning down to years apart. My last burn was January 2016. I'm currently already on a type of injury "holiday." 

Bleah.

Friday, July 14, 2017

"Don't hurt yourself."

Did I, as a fifty one year old grown woman, hear her correctly? Did the nurse just tell me: Don't hurt yourself.

Whhhhhhaaaa????!!

Seriously people. Don't you think I KNOW that already? Have you not gotten the hint that I am working hard to avoid that outcome by seeking medical attention in the first place???

Since being placed on prednisone my mental health has gotten a bit wonky. Plus adding in the hormonal upheaval of  my periods stopping and I'm in full blown estrogen and progesterone withdrawals. I'm a mental mess.

Things got so bad in May I made and appointment with the FNP and requested to go back on an antidepressant. Something I swore I would never do.

because to tries at medicating my head proved ugly in my twenties. First one had bad cardiac side effects. Your resting pulse isn't suppose to be 120+.

The second attempt was with Zoloft.  We learned a important thing about my body with that med trail. We learned I am VERY sensitive to medications. We started with the lowest dose and then on a check up, I reported I was tolerating it okay and it seemed to be helping.

So she upped the dose.

And a week later I tried to kill my self.

Yeah.  Being depressed and unable to medicate it has been the story of my life.

I have been wrestling with horrendous urges to end my life since November of last year. Noting really new I have been "suicidal" my whole life.

But these urges aren't to end my life....there to end my suffering.

Can you see the difference?

I don't want to die. I just want this 24/7 never ending chronic pain to FUCKING STOP.

Yup.

I'm used to dealing with urges and thoughts. I don't ignore them. I pay attention  to there intensity and if I need help I reach out to husband and vocalize what is going on. I reach out further if that doesn't help.

So in May it was GO TO THE ER bad. So I requested to try the Zoloft again. I figured it was initially working at the lower dose, and its the go to med for depression and PTSD.

The FNP I have now has gotten to see first hand my sensitivity to meds and was naturally too freaked out to put me back on something that cause a suicide attempt in my 20's.

So I got referred for a psych evaluation to have a P-doc decide what med would be best for my head.

Which isn't until August 1st.

The FNP discovered this and had the nurse call me to let me know if I need help before then to call them, and as she ended up she commented, "Don't hurt yourself."

My instant reaction was wtf?????? am I two years old?

don't eat play-doh, don't play with matches, don't play in the street, don't pick your nose...

More education is required I see. On how to be supportive of people who are healing /living with self inflicted violence. I will blog that in the upcoming days.

For now I will leave you with the question most self injures answer that statement with.

"Don't hurt yourself." 

"Why not?"

How would you respond?

Friday, June 30, 2017

Isn't pain pain?

(continued from previous post) * * * trigger for self injury descriptions * * *

It wasn't until I was way past that point in my life that I did deeper thinking on the how and whys of why "others inflicted injury" wouldn't work the same as self injury.

People think pain = pain.

It isn't so.

You stub your toe, and get treated to unexpected pain from a non focused source.

is different then:

Facing an angry abuser who punches you in the face. In this case you know its coming eventually.

is different then:

Going through labor pains.

is different then:

Living with chronic back pain.

etc.

It can be further broken down to the various types of self injury. Rage injuring pain isn't the same as boredom injuring, or injuring in reaction to anxiety/stress.

Pain to self injures also is different depending on the additional elements.

Example: If I punch my face vs setting my arm on fire vs slicing open my skin and bleeding.

Pain without blood is in a different category then pain with blood.

Surprised at how complex it is?

Pain is pain to a degree, but them with self injury your adding in a very real mental element. Partly because often times self injury is used to transfer mental pain to the surface.

Lets stop for a second and look at labor pain. You know the source, you know the purpose, you know the outcome. Painful, yes, but knowing why/it action helps your brain categorize it and stop it from causing you to develop PTSD/flashbacks.

You break your arm, Crap! inconvenient pain. You adjust your cahonies and get in warrior mode and power through the pain, and its memorialized as a dent in your shield, a battle field trophy.

Getting the crap beat outta you as a child by a parental figure, not the same case. There is NO rhyme or reason to that pain. There is no outcome that you can justify this kind of pain and it gets stored internally, manifesting as body memories, PTSD, depression, damaged self esteem.

When you INTENTIONALLY inflict pain on yourself its a blending of all three examples above.

I would LOVE to see brain scans of myself self injuring, and of me being hurt by another source. My theory is that there would be some commonality, but would ping different areas of my brain.

I've noticed in the case of unintentional pain, (stub my toe) I can't apply the same mental process to calm the pain as I do to a self inflicted injury.

Stub toe = OUCH &^%$$&^! THAT HURTS!!!

Self injury = relief of pain.

wait, what?!

Most often times of self injury people are trying to escape/defuse/vent/convey mental pain. The physical pain is preferred over mental pain.

Self injury is very much about CONTROL.

I CONTROL WHEN AND WHERE I FEEL PAIN.

I just can't stress that enough.

If you hit me, I don't have the control.

If you are tattooing me, its the same as labor pain. temporary non-mentally damaging pain for a good outcome.

If you cut/burn me instead of me harming myself, its  combo of no control and scaring my psyche by triggering the abused child mentality.

I can't see any way of replicating the SELF part of self injury. When someone else is doing the injuring. Nor would I want to.

Allowing someone else to hurt you is not healthy.

Like wise, hurting your self isn't healthy.

Which is why I ultimately came to the decision to work on my issues.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

others inflicted injury

(originally I wanted this to be one blog. But after letting it sit I decided to split it into two. The later 1/2 has the potential to be quite triggering, and this part not so much. Part two tomorrow.)


When Richard and I finally got around to laying the plans to stop the self injury...

What! What do you mean FINALLY? Didn't you go into therapy to stop the SIV first thing?

Self injury = coping skill. Used to deal with under lying traumas.

Stopping the SI and not first addressing the under laying stuff is pointless. There is an order for things.

"Why YES you DO have compound spiral fracture of your femur! Its terrible, it's hanging by tendons!! First thing we need to do is get you into physical therapy and rehab you...THEN we will operate and fix the bone and cast it. But first, stop bleeding and screaming. You can do it, Just stop."

yeah...riiiiiight.

Without the ground work I could have never made the attempt to replace it with healthy coping skills.

As we discussed it and were making up rules, I sassily asked, "What if I can get someone to do the injuring?"

Richard paused and eyed me.

I smirked, "It wouldn't be self injury, it would be others inflicted injury."

I waited for his face to roll into that familiar 'I ain't buying your bull Paja' look. But instead he was giving it deep thought.

"like what" He finally asked.

My turn to deep think. Hmmm.

"Tattoos? piercing?" I shrugged.

We both lapsed into deep thought.

"Okay." he said quietly.

Wait, did you just let go of my hand there and feed me to the crocodiles? Free rein to allow others to hurt me? I drew back in my chair. I locked eyes with him and could feel my anger rising. "Why would you want anyone to hurt me?" I at last whispered through my throat as it swelled up and choked off my voice.

His eyes softened.

That trickster. He didn't. He just wanted me to put some thought into it.

I nodded and fought back the tears. When I could speak I said, "other inflicted injury, off the table."

...and it remained off the table.





Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Gummie sister

Saw the surgeon yesterday.

He doesn't think the pain is coming from my abdominal cavity. Ultra sound showed no abnormalities. He thinks its in the pelvic cavity, which is out of his league. He read the original surgeons report and saw he didn't go into the abdominal cavity so there is zero chance of any surgical adhesions there.

There isn't currently a surgeon in my town who does pelvic surgery, but one is coming and when s/he is here I will get referred over. In the mean time he is referring me to a physical therapist who specializes in pelvic pain. That will help narrow down the area/muscles involved.

Chasing down the source of the pain is getting more focused. I am feeling hopeful again.

I do worry once they find it...the scar tissue will be so bad they can't fix it. I've found that just KNOWING what is causing me pain eliminates some of it. For example, I am able to ignore my neck pain because I know what is wrong.

My older sister came over and we spent the day together. We laughed like rabid hyenas at our own warped sense of humor.  She damn near made me pee my pants in Costco!

Siblings are a wonderful thing.

They are people you might not have ever been friends with in real life. 

However you share ~18 years of close contact with said person,  you have seen them barf, hung there underwear on the clothes line, and slept in the same room with.

You know how they apply their deodorant and brush their teeth. You've bathed with them, worn their socks, and by gawd you know how to yank there chain and make'um mad.

You've shared snacks, toys and a bathroom with them.

Your Alias Smith and Jones, Johnny and Roy, Barnabas Collins and Daphne.

They are not anyone you would call on to be a character witness, a professional reference, but there first on your list for calling when you have dangerous or illegal nincompoopery to get into.

So back at Costco yesterday she hands me a sample of carne asada.  First off at almost 52 years old I had to ask her what it was.

"Your not feeding me goat are you?"

Turns out cows have more "meat-personalities" then most mammals.

I showed her how my dentures don't meet any longer and chewing up stuff like that is too difficult. My dentures only meet and one small point in the front. My jaw bones have deteriorated and I should have gotten new teeth eons ago. But at the prince of +3000$ I've just never bothered.

I can chew stuff endlessly and never break it down.

So as I "chewed" on the meat we slithered down more aisles getting stuff that wasn't on our lists and just chatting and laughing.

She picked up another sample of some weird alien fruit and extended it to me.

I politely opened my mouth and extended my tongue with the lump of carne asada.

She didn't miss a beat and ordered me to: "Spit out your meat gum and try this!"

"attention house keeping we have a pee spill on aisle eleven!"

With all the nerve and muscle damage in my pelvis I am a HUGE risk for peeing myself...and then you add hysterical laughing induced by your sister and you have the perfect storm.

BwahahahahA!

Even if they can't fix my pelvic issues, I will be okay. I will find away to laugh and live with it.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

ouch-less

I've been living with chronic pain since I tore ligaments in my foot in my tweens. Living like that does something to you. The only way I could deal with it was to ignore it.

Back injury's one and two added more pain. Neck/collar bone and rib injury yet more pain. Wrists and elbow injuries, more ...so when I developed groin pain 10 years ago I just sadly accepted it and added it to the rest of the pain.

I basically ignore by convincing my mind, that ...this is my base line. That I'm supposed to be in that much pain.

I tried twice to get it diagnosed and treated. First one might as well have been mother. I got a cold, "It's probably a hernia, we don't fix those anymore, just wear tight pants." WHAT THE FUCKING HELL?!

Second time it flared to a point I couldn't stand it my doctor was off and the on call saw me. She wanted to do a pelvic exam as groin pain can be indicative of gynecological issues. well that triggered the hell out of me, and I ended up a bawling mess and left.  (Pelvic exams are something that take a lot of mental prep work for me. You just can't spring them on me.)

Last month it again got to FUCKIT ALL IM GOING TO THE ER NOW!!! on the pain scale, and I tried once again.

I got referred to a surgeon.

There are 3 possibilities of what it could be. Inguinal hernia from my last pregnancy, surgical adhesions from the horse falling on me surgery, or an issue with the Essure coils in my fallopian tubes, which last week I ruled out with the gynecologist.

Which means...holy moly....IT MOST LIKEY FIXABLE!!

For the first time I have hope that this constant pain can be taken away.

I see the surgeon on the 13th.

I hope he wants to fix this problem for me.

Less pain to be in would be such a welcomed thing,

Friday, May 12, 2017

Going to the ER when your suicidal

(trigger for suicidal thoughts and self injury descriptions)
SIV = self inflicted violence

Last month a suicidal man showed up the ER at one of the local hospitals. Only problem was he showed up with a gun, and was threatening the staff.

The police and security guards were able to keep everyone safe and defuse the situation.

Local social media was complementing the staff/police in one breath and then being angry with the man in the next breath.

Everyone was missing one perspective. The mans. What that tells me, is those commenting, thankfully, have never been so suicidal that they have been forced to go the ER to seek help.

Let me give you a look at what it's like to go to the ER when you are suicidal...from the prospective of the suicidal person.

I have lost track of the number of nights I spent sitting in the my car in the ER parking lot, bawling my eyes out, trying to summon up the courage to walk into the ER and ask for help.

The "I can't handle my head - I'm going to loose this battle - Suicidal as fuck - help me" plan was firmly in place before I left therapy.

I fought  like a motherfuckin' wildcat to stay alive in my 20's.

I wanted to be damn sure I continued to more forward after leaving therapy.

When Richard first suggested I go the ER for help, I blew him off. I mean 'common I couldn't even call him on the phone for help at that point.

There were the fears too. Images of being restrained and forcefully drugged...as well as the awful, awful knife to the gut fear that ....they wouldn't believe me, and turn me away.

Imagine, me, walking in to the ER. Calm. Collected, dissociated the fuck out to the point I am a smooth empty shell with no humanity in it.

"Hi." I'd say.

"What do you need to be seen for?" they would ask.

"I'm suicidal and want to kill my self." I'd say, then punctuate it with my high nervous laugh.

They would look at me eyeing me, judging me, trying to determine the truth to my words, and before they could ask my name I would loose my nerve and stammer an apology and beat a hasty exit.

"never mind, sorry for wasting your time, its nothing really, I'm fine."

When you go to the ER with a broken bone, or your guts hanging out, or writhing in pain YOU don't get judged. You are automatically treated with compassion and professionalism.

Because you can't see mental pain there is no way for them to triage you without having to ask you questions that make it sound like they think your faking.

The ONE time I got the nerve to go inside, I never made it a foot from my car. brain washing from my childhood stopped me and I got back in my car.

my mothers ghostly words "are you bleeding? no? then stop crying."

I bashed my face with a hammer until I was a bloody, snotty bawling mess.

"Now you can go in." I had told my self. Now I looked the part. Now the pain was visible...now I looked like I was in danger...........now....now I would be believed.

But it was too late. The self inflicted violence had dissipated the suicidal urges and calmed me, and put me in head space I could handle my self. The danger had passed. Totally defeating the purpose of coming to the ER in the first place...which was to deal with the suicidal state without using SIV as the coping skill.


There is a huge battle when you are suicidal and seek help.  Part of you wants to die, and another part of you is reaching for help. A wrestling match that is of epic proportions. Guess which one has the greater pull? If your head is thinking suicide, that is where the balance of the weight will rest. The internal built in preservation for life encoded into your DNA, is there to save you from dangerous situations, stuff like if you see a bear, it tells you to RUN!

No where to run when the danger is in your head.

This man who came with the gun to the ER told them he was suicidal. There was a war raging within him. GET HELP - DIE - GET HELP - DIE .....let someone take control and help me .... fuck let someone else kill me...

Perhaps he wanted the police to kill him. Perhaps he needed to make the mental pain visible so he felt justified in going to the ER for help.

either way its not as easy as the media makes it sound.

"If your suicidal, get help. Reach out. Go to the ER."

I eventually wrote what became known as my "Owners manual". A document with all the info the ER staff would need to know. So I could walk in and just hand it over, and not have to talk, or prove anything. 

My name is Paja, I am feeling very suicidal and I am not safe. I need help to keep my selves safe. I have a history of SIV and working with my therapists to stop that negative coping skill.

Don't let my quiet nature fool you. I am in danger. I wouldn't be here if I could take care of this my self.

(a list of my therapists/doctor's phone numbers)

(list of my diagnosis, and medications I was taking)

Coping skills that are useful:

1. Have me visualize snow
2. argue, with me, if you can get me to cry the rage/anger will dissipate and I can handle my self from there.
3. ect etc

That document was my voice.

It brought me great comfort. It was like an invitation to the ball. I no longer needed to crash the party with blood and violence, I could simply go in and hand it over.

I kept a copy in my car and in my trailer.

I have never had to use it, but you'd think otherwise if you saw how tattered the copies are.

I am brave enough now to go in without it.

Others are not so lucky. Be compassionate and thankful they make it to the ER at all.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

same song different day

(trigger for pathetic whining)

First off apologies for all the blog spam. I am trying to get my mind back on line and focused on writing. I desperately want to finish Skinned.  Its very frustrating not to be able to. Even more frustrating to leave a character in limbo like that.

My physical health is just overwhelming everything right now. Second only to the chaos of my mental health.

I asked the FNP last week to put me back on Zoloft.

Which is a HUGE thing considering the last time I was on it things got ugly. So ugly its listed on my chart as an allergy.

Any way we are back tracking through mountains of paper work looking for the data on the episode. I on my end looked though my journal entries.

Its always devastating to me to look through my therapy books/journals. For the primary reason....all I have to do is change the dates and those entries could have been written today.

If that isn't enough to make one feel crazy I don't know what is.

My paper chart from that time lists the symptoms I asked to be seen for.

Exactly the same ones I was seen for last week. I'm still trying to get help for pain issues that date back 20 + years.

Why can't I be helped?

garrrr, I shouldn't go in those books without a chaperone. They're pretty intense.  I also was in there looking for my old "owner's manual." A document I wrote in case I had to go to the ER. It was all the info the ER staff would need if I showed up on there doorstep in a suicidal state. I need if for the next blog I am working on. I can't find it. That's frustrating. I am going to have to write without it, because I can't go back in that pile of papers. Too triggering.

Just a quick jaunt through it has left me bawling.

Xanax on board, going to get a hug from hubby and then go to the store for a shit load of hostess crap to drown my sorrows in sugar.

What if I can never write again? what if who I level out to be after all the dust settles is no longer me?
Why is it ....only the pain survives each time I molt, evolve, and change?

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Faded


I was recently featured in a magazine that our local paper puts out.


(there is an error in the article -   It incorrectly states I advise against "support groups" for self injuries. I advise against group therapy.)

A year ago I was in the paper and on the noon news. The residents at my work commented on seeing me in the paper, and on the news. But they didn't comment on the topic of self injury.

THIS time was different. BOY did they have questions!

I figured they wouldn't see it and gave it no thought. HA! boy was I wrong. They grilled me with all kinds of questions and most wanted to see my scars.

Which brought up an interesting observation.

my scars are faded.

I don't have any red scars. They are all ghostly white...and I am okay with that. In the past I wouldn't have been okay with that.


Healed white scars have been a trigger for me in the past. Some of my injures are reflective of trauma's that I don't want to forget, if my 'bookmark' is faded then I worry about forgetting why they're there, I've been known to re-injure to keep the scars bright red for the year it takes them to fade again.

I wonder if I'm okay with this because I'm more healed? Or is it because I've got my hands full right now with my health issues.

Being on prednisone rolls around in my head. It makes healing wounds more difficult. A burn would also artificially elevate my CK level and we need to keep tabs on that to see how bad the polymyositis  is flared.

I still have SIV urges.

BOY DO I.

I came awfully close last month to going on a SIV spree when I was so suicidal. I actually gave my self permission to do it.

Yet, I never even picked up my tools.

Some days I wish the urges were as faded as my scars.

*************** TRIGGER - GRAFFIC SIV IMAGES OF SCARS below ***************



I hope that one day the mental pathways that bring to reaching for SIV as a coping method will fade too. Be so dusty that I don't slide easily into them. There are days I am miles away from self injury...and days I wanna just do it for no reason.

I will always carry those reminders of the SIV on my skin. I'm at peace with that. My scars and me? We good. We good.

Mirror... self injury ...rorriM

* * TRIGGER for self injury* *  

The pain was crushing.

I had reached the end of my coping rope and had reached for the matches.

I sat on my bed in my little trailer and ran through all the things I should be doing instead of burning. All these healthy skills I could have reached for. I could reach out to my therapists. I could go to the ER, I could do any number of healthy things.

But in that moment all I wanted was to be comforted by the sweet pain of the flame licking my skin.

I was still in in the trenches of switching from the mentality of pain = comfort. Trying to learn and implement other things to bring relief. Trying to befriend my body and get reconnected with it.

The thick mental stew of depression, anxiety and resurfacing memories was making thinking clearly impossible. The constant state of dissociation was adding another suffocating blanket of weight.

I need to injure to breath.

cut a hole in my skin to let air in....

...or the demons out.

Any hope of stopping the injury went out the window with a flick of my wrist as the tiny match head igniting.

I lite the candle and moved into position to put my arm over it.

I stared into the flame. I could feel its heat on my forearm. My insides welled up in anticipation of the physical pain, which would drive out the mental pain.

Deep inside  a small part of me tried one more time to derail the burn.

you don't have to do this. go call for help, go ride the horse, go sit with the dogs, go to the store for pepsi, go for a hard run, call Richard, call Iona and Nola...

"I can't." I say with much effort to be heard from under the heavy weights

try

"I can't."

can't or won't?

My internal mercury switch tripped and I came up swinging.

"LEAVE ME THE HELL ALONE. I AM GOING TO BURN. I DON'T WANT TO STOP INJURING MY SELF. I DESERVE TO BE INJURED I DESEVER THIS PAIN I AM A MONSTER. I KNOW WHAT YOUR TRYING TO DO! YOUR TRYING TO GET ME TO CRY TO DISIPATE THIS MOOD. IT'S NOT GOING TO FUCKING WORK I NEED THIS BURN!  I NEED THIS BURN!  I NEED THIS BURN!"

Angry now, the injury motivation moved from "burn for pain relief" to "rage burn for the sheer hell of damaging my self." I moved to the table at the other end of the trailer, in hopes that those two seconds of transit time would calm the rage.

I set  the candle on the table and got ready to burn. My eyes focused on the flame. As I raised my arm to apply it to the flame, my eyes defocused on the foreground and became aware of the background.

What I saw stopped me.

It was my reflection in a small  mirror.

I was face to face with my abuser.

That didn't look like the face of someone 'trying to help' me by injuring me. It didn't look like someone who wanted to be helped. It looked a lot like a angry animal trying to look fierce so everyone would leave it alone. She looked to be in a lot of mental pain/torment. She didn't look reachable.

I tried to get my brain back to burning my self by returning my eyes to the flame.

but my focus again returned to my eyes in the mirror. The rage and hate were gone, there was just a wounded me in there now.

My guts churned. what was this? What is going on?

I blew out the candle and ended up having a good sobby cry with my reflection.

******************************

The mirror became a tool in my arsenal to help me heal. It forced me to SEE. See not only who was harming me, but who I was hurting as well. Firmly connecting that "hello...you are both the abuser and the abused here."

It also was helpful in derailing injuries because it added an "audience" and took out the secretive/solitary aspect of the SIV.

For a long time there was a note on my box of matches. "look at who you are going to burn." A reminder to use the mirror.

I found quickly that I have zero tolerance for watching my self be abused/injured.

I can even to this day derail injury urges by sitting with a mirror and connecting with my self.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

still not dead.....just barely

Damn... do you all remember when you couldn't shut me up? When I wrote all the time?

My mental health took a nasty turn a bit ago and the suicidal soundtrack that backs my life, changed to suicidal plans. It was like the perfect storm of crap whirling in a tornado that I couldn't avoid.

It was....scary.

very scary.

To the point that I had to activate the KEEP YOUR SELF ALIVE AT ALL COSTS protocol that we came up with in therapy.

Just hanging on the life preserver wasn't enough. I had to let go with one hand and swim to shore.

The SIV urges have been INSANE.

It was no small feat that I am alive and injury free today.

Honestly, I am amazed I survived.

Yes. 

Yes I have follow up doctor appointments to try and prevent a repeat of this next month.

Still 2 weeks out from the eye doctor appointment about my blurry eyes. It's so frustrating. I can't see to type. Can't read the screen easily. makes it difficult.

Worse its affecting my job. We are switching to electronic medication books....and I can't clearly see the training videos.

I have tried and I can't write through the blurry-ness. It is soooooo frustrating. I'm having pockets of mental clarity where I am jotting down blogs and story ideas. Then sit down to blog and end up so discouraged.

So that is my update. I survived a recent bout of extreme suicidalness, and a barrage of intense SIV urges. Still struggling with prednisone side effects, and a flair up the polymyositis, blurry vision and a whole shit can of peri-menopause symptoms that are just stirring the pot with fiendish glee.

I can tell you....if I have to do that again next month I am just going straight to the ER and having them lock me up. That took EVERYTHING I had.

PCP visit May 1st, Eye Doctor May 5th, Rheumatologist May 10th.....and hopefully an Endocrinology appointment soon.

Cause my thyroid gets blamed for all my symptoms.....and my thyroid is a shriveled up radiated dead thing. How the hell can it be causing all this???

urgg, I have enough health issues to be a whole season of House MD.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

health update

Bleah.

That about sums up my health status right now.

Right now I am having an episode of burry vision. (um, hellooo that is a MS symptom...that all the doctors are ignoring.)

The muscle weakness/pain in my legs and increased. I can no longer walk up stairs without my legs screaming/becoming shaky.

I can't hold any thing in my arms/hands. My biceps become painful/weak/shaky. I sat with a baby on my lap for ~40 minutes the other day. All I had to do was hold my arms out slightly and around him like a seat belt. That left my arms just screaming and weak.

The prednisone is helping with the joint/arthritis pain, that is something.

My head has been trying to kill me all winter.

Seriously.

I have so much to write about. But the brain fog is crippling me. Its killed the writer in me. My writers pail isn't empty it's GONE.

I don't know if its a medication side effect or not but I AM NOT AMUSED.

I am about to go ape-shit on the medical profession and throw my own poo at them until they figure out what is going on and help me.

I have not abandoned my blog. I'm just on walk-a-bout trying to find my freaking mind.

Kids! thyroid brain fog, just say NO!!

In the time it took me to hold out my hands and type this, my biceps are now weak and shaky.

I am hoping that forcing my self to write a few blogs will coax the writer out. Or at least leave a bookmark in my blank mind so I can find my way back.

Public speaking about self injury - the begining

So how the heck did I end up being a public figure who talks about self injury? Me, super shy, eccentric nut who doesn't even feel connected to the human race.

It can be tracked back to my late twenties.  It was post therapy. I was enrolled in abnormal psychology in college and in the text book, they had a few paragraphs about self injury.

um.

A few WRONG paragraphs about self injury.

It rubbed me the wrong way that this miss information was being taught to  students who would go on to treat clients who self injured.

Why were "professionals" making guesses and drafting theories about SI. I remember wondering why don't they just ask the self injurers?

We had to do a project. Our choices were a paper or a 10 min presentation. I choose to do a 10 min presentation on SIV. (self inflicted violence) I boiled all my knowledge on the subject down and calmed my nerves and waited to present my speech.

I had consciously chosen to wear 3/4 sleeves that day to hide my scars. I wanted the talk to focus on the topic not my scars. I didn't want the talk to be a show and tell...and have the focus shift from the reasons why people self injure to the scars.

People tend to see self injury scars and respond with "ooh that person is crazy!"

I didn't want them to go into my talk already judging me as being crazy.

As class started I was the second presenter. When it was my turn I began by announcing my topic and asking for a show of hands of everyone who had never self injured. I then asked them to put their hands down if they had ever gotten a tattoo or a piercing, and kept listing things, scratched a bug bit till it bled, slapped their face in anger, bit there lip, punched a wall in anger, had more then one sun burn.... until all the hands were down.

"You have all self injured. Lets look at how this behavior gets escalated to the other end of the spectrum, of cutting , burning, bone breaking, self surgery."

At that point I said launched into a condensed, raw look at self injury.

At the end of my 10 minutes the teacher opened it up for questions.

and for the next FORTY minutes I answered questions and discussed in more detail self injury. The hunger for more info touched me. People spoke up and asked for help "My niece cuts...what can we do to help her?"

Near the end I pushed back my sleeves and fessed up to being a person who lives with SIV. Which, by the looks of some people caught them off guard. It started another round of questions.

We went waaaaay over the allotted time. The professor called an end to the talk just moments before class was dismissed.

I got an A+

More then that I got a boost to my self esteem. It was a huge push to my soul that would lead me to be more open and reach out to other self injurers. That lecture was my turning point. My ground zero. I was now an teacher/advocate  on the subject.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Explaining your self inury to your children - When mom hurts

Was interviewed recently for an article about living with SIV.  The reporter was following my healing time line and taking notes.

There was a gap of seven or so years between therapy and starting to write on the message boards. I mentioned I wrote/drew a few things for the "The Cutting Edge:  A Newsletter for People Living with Self-Inflicted Violence" a snail mailed newsletter in that time, but completely, COMPLETLY forgot to mention my greatest contribution to the world of SIV education that occurred in that time frame.

I'm going to blame it on my annoying thyroid brain fog. Ha! Anyway I figured I should put it on here, before I forget about it again!

It's for parents who self injure to explain it to their kids. The age range for this book is 4-6 years old.

















There was a time after hypnotherapy ended where I was just living and putting into practice all the skills I had learned there and in therapy. I worked and returned to school and just dipped my toes back into living with the human race.

It was in that time I found the Cutting Edge. I was pre-internet and it was the only support group for people living with self inflicted violence. A place were we could talk openly about self injury.

In one edition  in 1994 a woman named Ann vented a long letter about her situation and life with self injury. As she poured out her guts she lamented, "Why isn't there a book to help me explain my self injury to my kids?"

I thought, because no one has asked before.

And I wrote When Mom Hurts that very day. I sat on the manuscript for a few years not really sure how I wanted to proceed with it.

In 2002 on the self injury message boards, I began having to reply to a lot of mothers who wanted to know how to respond to their children's questions about their scars. I finally dug out the manuscript and put in some illustrations.

Those drawings were intended as temporary fillers until I had time to go back and properly illustrate it. I ran some rough draft copies to get feed back and sent them out. I figured the book would take a few months or so to finalize and boil down to its finally polished version.

I didn't fully comprehend the NEED for this book.

It took off and went like wild fire in its rough draft state! The cutting edge reviewed the rough draft and I started getting request from all over the world for copies.

I even got connected with Ann and sent her a copy.  It was so cool to talk to her!

The story doesn't end there. When my son was 7ish or so he came up to me and told me the shirt  I was wearing was his favorite one on me.

I was cleaning the garage and the shirt was a ratty old stained one. It was gross. I said "really? why?"

He smiled and said. "because it has long sleeves, and hides your ugly scars."

His words gouged my heart and took my breath away.  I had never hidden my scars and didn't normally wear long sleeves.

Wounded I retreated to the message board and wrote this:

after calming down and stepping off the anxiety train last night, I realized my son was pointing out to me the need for me to write a sequel.

As a writer it never ceases to amaze me how little control over my gift I have. I very, very seldom choose to write a story. They just come busting in to my mind and DEMAND to be written.

"When mom hurts" is aimed at introducing the topic of SIV to young kids. Designed to stir up conversation and more questions.

So its time now to answer those questions.

here is a peak into the writing process of my mind.
First I need a working title. (So I know what to call the project until its name comes to me.)
easy that one named its self.

"Long Sleeves"

Now to wait with yellow legal pad and zipped mouth and open ears to clearly hear what my son has to say when I interview him later today.
I can't answer his questions until he asked them. Its been too long since my farm kids asked me stuff, I don't remember what I told them, or how I handled things back then.

I know I will be unable to answer all his questions...and the book will stir up more. (great just got a commission for the conclusion of the trilogy)

Some where in my massive pile of things to finish are the manuscript for Long Sleeves for ages 7-10 and the conclusion of the trilogy that is for ages 11-15.

I should really finish them one day.