Happy anniversary

Usually I get this great idea or need to complain about something and then sit down and write a post. This is the first time I’ve got nothing planned. But it is a special day. A year ago, tonight, I OD’ed. I know I’m supposed to be celebrating my life. I should be proud of all the obstacles that I’ve cleared to get to this point. But really, that’s not the case. 

You see, last year I was 15 pounds lighter. Last year, even though I hated myself, just like I do now, there was a part of me that I did like. I liked my eating disorder. I liked it better than myself. And I want that feeling again. I want to give up myself to my eating disorder. 

I only have one regret about that night and this is the only place I can say it, I should have waited longer. I shouldn’t have worried about who would find my body. 

Of course, since then, I’ve been living. I’ve been living for my girls. They insist that they need me, even though they are 21 and 18. In fact, they actually were very convincing for a while. I’m not really convinced anymore. 

You see, they’ve decided to move thousands of miles away with their dad. I’ve offered to buy a house closer to where they are now. I could commute and they would have a place to live but they like the idea of moving. And I get it. It’s exciting to move to a new place.

How am I supposed to feel like they need me when they just up and move away? Two things are going on right now. 1. I’m feeling horribly depressed and lonely that they are abandoning me. Or 2. I’m horribly depressed and sad and are looking at this as a breach in contract and now I’m free to do what I want. This includes all my eating disorder behaviors plus other self destructive behaviors. Drink too much, eat too much, puke too much, not eat enough, cut, and if I want, end it all. 

I know that Ted loves me and wants me around for a long time. I know my siblings feel the same and a few of my friends but in the end, it doesn’t matter what they think or feel. It’s my decision. 

For now, I’ll keep living one day at a time. My girls aren’t moving for months. I have time to contemplate life. Even if it’s with a pint of ice cream in my hands with the clear expectations to throw it up after.

Let’s go!!!!!!

Wow, it’s been a long while. My last post was in August. It doesn’t seem like that long ago. What have I been up to? Well, thank you for asking. Just teaching, coaching, and going for my masters. All things that are stressful to me. A healthier me would have said, “No way am I going to take on all that. Why don’t you decline the coaching position for this year and focus on teaching and your masters work.” But the pushy unhealthy me who could care less if things went completely to shit said, “Fuck that! Don’t give up that money making coaching position. You can do it all! Suck it up buttercup.” So I took it all on. To watch me everyday, going through the motions, I look like I’m handling it all. Fine and dandy. But if you could sit in my head for a little while, you know, like that little alien that sits in the head of the guy on MIB, you would be fearing for your life. At least your own sanity. With all the craziness, I did come to my senses the other day and decided to postpone this next grad class until after the holidays. 

I know, TONS OF PEOPLE can handle the responsibilities of what I do. But for me, it’s really challenging. By the way, a side note, I  hate when people compare someone to someone else. You know, “if you can do it then I can do it” shit. Maybe I wasn’t born with the get up and go like many people have. 

This time of year sucks. It’s the prettiest time of year and I do ohhh and ahhh at all the beautiful colors but my brain also is weeping for each leaf as the tree stops producing what that little leaf needs to survive and cuts him off to fall to the ground to be stomped on by people. 

I guess I have the seasonal affective disorder, at least that’s what I tell everyone. Actually, I just have an eating disorder and depression. The two of them are battling it out ninja style. My eating disorder wants to starve me. Make me crazy about weight loss and calories. But my depression is encouraging me to stuff food down my throat, drink more calorie engorged booze, and get high, which causes me to stuff more food into my face hole. 

On a scale of 1 to 10, 10 being I’m just peachy and 1 being I’m barely holding on, well I’m about a 3. Does that bother me? Not as much as it does my therapist and my boyfriend, Ted. And if you have been reading my blog for a while, then you know what was going on with me last year at this time. The anniversary of the “event” which is what Ted has named it, is just around the corner. I don’t want to say it’s not on my mind but the only reason why it is on my mind is because it’s on theirs. 

This year, I’m in a different place. Not better but not worse. It’s more of a lateral move. Suicide is off the table. Remember, I have two girls who finally got through to me and I’ve promised them that I will rise from my comfy bed daily, take a shower, and live my life. I think the concern is, when I’m not in my right mind because of my little bad habits, I tend to do stupid impulsive things. Like OD.

I’m not concerned about it at all. I’ve thought about it ALOT. I can not deny that a huge part of me wants to get in a fancy time machine and go back to that night and do things right. If I had, I wouldn’t be here a year later regretting it. Does that mean, I’ll try it again. No. I had my chance and fucked it up. I played life or death too many times and I’m not allowed to play anymore. I guess you could say I got a red card and was kicked off the team, and it was the losing team.

BUTTTT there is one thing that did come to my attention the other day. Apparently by living this dumb life I’m expected to go to a wedding in August. Far away yes, but I’m really annoyed and freaking out about it already. I hate dressing up. I hate going to weddings of people that I don’t know well. I have months to lose the weight and the time to begin is now. So follow me on my journey of self hatred, self sabotage, self harm, all the way until August!

When we send our kids to school, we want them to be surrounded by people who care. Who loves life. Who looks for the best in everyone (even my little terror with a heart beat) Who is a law abiding citizen. Who, if seen out of school, is always on their best behavior. I know, you may think, well that is not really all true, but seriously, wouldn’t that be the ideal person who is teaching your wide eyed curious nerdy little boy? 

I’ve had friends who were incredible teachers but lost their job for reasons that other lines of work would not. One to many drinks at a party and an OUI can get you fired. Oh wait, I didn’t mean to use the word ‘fired’ I meant, bullied until he resigned. You hear about it on the news. The teacher who was let go after a picture on Facebook showed her with a glass of wine in each hand. There are many parents out there that want to believe that their kiddos are being taught by…….Mrs. Perfect who is also married to Mr. Perfect that I have 2 ½ kids. They are in bed by 8. They live a sober honest lifestyle and do volunteer work every weekend. They are polite and kind and live in a little house with a white picket fence. When you see them at the store, they are buying organic fruits and vegetables and pass by the liquor aisle without even a glance. They are not too fat or too thin. They are nice looking, a face that everyone would love. Always using inside voices and never swearing. In fact, they never truly get angry because they are always so understanding. 

Now we all know that person doesn’t exist. But everyone wants their kids’ teacher to have some of those qualities. A few would do. And it does depend on the setting. I think in an urban school district like the one I teach in, the expectations might be a little lower. But those schools full of kids whose houses look over the ocean, well that family might want more. 

Okay, where am I going with this. Well, I’m not that teacher. I do my best to look the part. I try to talk the part. And it varies from student to student. I can tell the difference from the stories they share. Once I sat back and watched a student whose father has been hit with narcan twice and whose mother was unemployed and they lived in low income housing talk to a student who lives in a two story colonial on the outskirts of town with a few acres of land. With a mom who was an insurance agent and a dad who was an engineer. They were comparing their worlds. The one who had it ‘good’ was in awe that someone could live like that, and in their city. The other, with a shoulder shrug, claimed it was no big deal. 

I’m missing my point here. I’m not one of those teachers. I’m divorced, financially unstable, emotionally unstable, constantly doing my best to make sure not to drop the F bomb. I do care for them. I am kind to them, sometimes a little sarcastic, but most of the time, I’ve got their backs. I live in an apartment which could be pulled out from under my nose if the 86 year old woman downstairs passes away and becomes the angel she truly is. I turn my back on students when I’m carrying a bottle of wine down the aisle. Or hide the front of my favorite shirt because it’s just an advertisement for some liquor. But the material is so so soft.  My shopping cart is full of junk food with the occasional vegetable. 

I try to hide it all. From everyone. Even my boss. Which by the way, is impossible to do because no matter what I say or do, I walk around feeling like there is a big sign on the back of my shirt that says, I’M A LOOSE CANNON! I’VE TRIED TO KILL MYSELF AND I HAVE AN EATING DISORDER AND ON THE VERGE OF A MENTAL BREAKDOWN EVERY SECOND. Of course, people that know me at work keep telling me that they don’t think that way. That’s what happened in the past. That the four months I had to be on medical leave to go to treatment, wasn’t a pain in the ass for everyone involved. It was hard to come back as it is and harder for me to try to fit in and be a normal person. 

What is the point of this blog you wonder? It’s my reason why I’m going to tell my therapist ‘NO’. She convinced me to be part of this small group online with people with eating issues. It’s only been a few weeks and yes, I like it. I like listening to, talking to, and supporting people my age. But the kicker is, it’s 9 in the morning. When I’ll be walking a classroom explaining the difference between a molecule and an atom, and probably doing something silly to keep their attention, they will be having a meeting. My therapist, who is always full of great ideas but unfortunately, ideas I often ignore, wants me to ask my principal if once a week, I can just give up my responsibility as a teacher, to continue working with the group. Just asking exposes me to more judgement. I’m trying to convince everyone that I’m good to go. Asking for someone else to cover me so I can talk about my problems is not a good idea. Yes, she’s told me that it’s really important and that they HAVE to allow me to take the time, I’m saying, Nope, it’s not going to happen. No way no how. I don’t care who you are, you will be judged, you will lose respect, you will be labeled someone who is difficult. No one wants to be the employee that they don’t trust! And worse, what happens if it gets out. What happens if a parent, from one of my students, finds out somehow what’s going on, or what my mental health status really is? I’ll be judged harshly by some. People don’t want their kids’ teacher to be the real me. They want the pretend me and that pretend me, does not do group counseling mid week at 9 AM! ABSOLUTELY NOT.

Hey! Where’s Libby?

So, as you know, I do have a therapist. A wonderful one, may I add. She puts up with my shit. I’m stubborn and annoying. I’m in denial and try very hard to hide my horrible ways but she reads me like an open book. Well anyway, she convinced me to join a group with a few other women who also have an unhealthy relationship with food. FINE I’ll call it what it is, an eating disorder! Are you happy now!

Anyways, as a group we are all reading the book, The Body is Not an Apology: The Power of Radical Self Love by Sonya Renee Taylor.  Yes, in the past I’ve complained about these types of books and refused to read them but hey, I’m trying. 

The book, well it’s not that bad. It points out the things that I refuse to see. The beliefs that I refuse to believe. As well as, it raises the question, who the hell am I and why do I do the things I do?

The most recent thing I read that made me go.. Hmmfff.. Was an inquiry question about what I have denied others because of my “eating disorder”. I’m all about what I’ve missed out in my life because of my food issues. I know what I give up but until the other day, I really just looked at the way these things impacted me. The question asked is directed at others. How has it really impacted my family and friends?

Obviously, they worry about me. That is a given. Yes, believe it or not, I do have a few people who love me. What I forget is, I’m not the only one missing out here. Let’s see….

So you can see. My choices of isolation really do impact others in my life. I guess I was too selfish to see it. Will that make me become this socialite that I know I can be. Haha… nope. But it will make me think about things a little different.

Denial Island

I live on an island, you may have heard of it. The Island of Denial. Some of you have stopped by to visit. Maybe a day trip or two. Some of you have a condo that you might visit more often or a seasonal cottage in the woods. But I, well, I live smackdown in the  middle of the island in a penthouse apartment. I am the mayor of Denial Island!

Right now, I’m in denial that I have a real eating disorder. Notice I put the word “real” in there. DENIAL. I’m eating less calories but I wouldn’t consider it actually restricting. I’m walking a few miles a day but it’s all because I LOVE walking. It’s okay that I skip a meal here or there. It’s really no big deal. And binging and purging once or twice a week really isn’t all that bad! 

Oh man…. I can hear my therapist now… DENIAL!

What has happened, I’ve allowed myself to get very comfortable on this island. Sometimes, so comfortable I’m in such denial that I’m sometimes forgetting my own common sense.  

Example. I’ve been trying to lose weight. Walking more, eating less. You know… being healthy and all. ***INPUT Side eye from therapist here.**

Anyway, the scale hasn’t made much movement. Oh yea, did I mention that my scale is very much needed. Without it I would be so lonely. 

I go out to eat at least 3 times a week, at the same bar, eating the same boiled chicken and broccoli. Along with that meal, I’ve been drinking a few drinks. At first, it was just one or two of those 100 calorie flavored club soda/vodka drinks. 100 calories here, 100 there. No big deal. 

But soon, I stepped out of my penthouse and sat my ass on denial beach and started drinking margaritas, fruity vodka drinks, long island ice teas…. Yummy yummy..

Yesterday, sitting at the bar with a friend, drinking just water, frustrated that the scale wasn’t moving, I decided to look up the calories of my favorite drinks. WOW! It’s common sense, we all know there are calories in alcohol. A lot of calories but I let myself bathe in the waters of denial and forgot about it. Soo.. let’s just say, I’ll allow myself to have one or two Truly’s but the other stuff, I just can’t do it!!

Let me give you another example of how rooted I am to this magic denial land. Today, I was exhausted and really didn’t want to go for a walk. But  you know, I had to because I love walking so much (LIAR). Anyway, I was talking to a friend as I’m huffing and puffing and complaining how tired I was when somewhere above, I heard my therapist’s voice. 

“You can’t walk if you don’t fuel your body.” 

So here I was, complaining of being tired. Not coming up with one reason why I should be so tired. In total denial of what was really going on. 

Oh don’t worry. Living on Denial Island impacts more than just my ED. I think I’ll be able to teach school, take grad classes, and coach soccer no problem. 

The other day when I had to deal with my daughter and her boyfriend, I would rather believe that his picture on Tinder was a mistake. My ex wants to hang the boy. But guess what? On  Denial Island, that all gets brushed under the rug.

And Ted, well you all know, he’s the constable on the island. 

Wait, before I convince you that Denial Island is a bad place, it has its good qualities too. For years I hung out on that island, denying the abuse I was enduring. I walked the trails in the woods, forgetting the marriage that was disintegrating around me. Sometimes, denial has saved my life. Sometimes, denial has given me some peace.

So, if you found yourself on Denial Island, give me a ring. We can meet for zero calorie drinks and zero calorie burgers. Maybe, we can even go for a long enjoyable walk in the 100 degree heat and love every bit of it. 

My number is (464)-633-6425 or I’M IN DENIAL

All in the family

If you’ve been reading past posts, you know that I am the victim of a victim of sexual abuse by a priest. Basically, a priest abused my older brother who in return, abused me. How I’ve dealt with it over the years, for the most part, hasn’t been good and explains my mental health issues.  

It was a long time ago and I was about six and he was about thirteen. He was young, I get it. He was a victim too. I get it. 

You might be thinking, it was a long time ago, he was young, he wasn’t to blame, well let me put this in perspective, he was thirteen. I work with thirteen year olds all the time. They know better. He was to blame. But again, long ass time ago. Oh and remember, I wasn’t his only victim. 

Anyway, I’ve really tried to deal with my past. I confronted him thirty years ago. He apologized and reminded me that he was young and I forgave him. He was my brother. We had some great memories too.  

Buttt…… I can’t figure out if he’s a true pedophile, just a pervert with a sick sense of humor, or just fucking stupid. 

Yesterday I had a high school graduation party for my youngest. First, can I acknowledge that in the last year, she was 100% remote. Had to process my suicide attempt. Had to say goodbye to me so I could go to Florida for treatment, then cry as she watched us force her sister into the hospital for psychiatric care. All this while working as a CNA with a bad back. And still graduated TOP TEN!

Anyway… back on the farm…

I’m one of those moms who thought it would be cute to put a picture of my daughter, when she was around four years old, on the cake. It was a silly picture, one of my favorites. Well, she was looking at the cake with her sister, her boyfriend, and my dumbass brother. Her sister made a comment stating that she USED to be a cute kid. Hhahahah… and what does my brother say, “Yea, when she was a baby and naked.”

I probably should let you know that my brother isn’t an idiot. He’s got a great job and has his masters in business. 

And my girls, well, three years ago when I had ended up in the hospital, I had sat down with them and explained to them why I struggled so much. They were fully aware of what their uncle had done. At 13 and 16, I was worried about how they would act around him, but they just stayed clear and didn’t say anything to anyone. So this time, they smiled at him awkwardly and walked away in disgust. 

I did talk to them after and reminded them that I had NEVER left them in the care of my brother.

Anyway, what he said was inappropriate to say the least. Right? Or was he just trying to be funny and I’m overreacting because of our past. 

Well let me throw another one your way. Two years ago, my brother, a die hard Mets fan posted on his facebook, “Rooting for the Yankees is a guilty pleasure like sleeping with your sister.”

You should have read the comments. Let’s just say not one person found this amusing. A few comments were from friends who were once altar boys too. My sister saw this before I did and demanded he take it down. But it was up there for a while. He thought about it, wrote it down, and left it there…… That’s not an oops!

Do you still think, maybe, just maybe, he just doesn’t get it? Or maybe he’s really got a warped sense of humor? 

Let me bring you back about 22 years. I was engaged. Most of my family was in town. We went to a club to have a few drinks. My family is really really really good at consuming an extreme amount of alcohol. So there was my brother sitting with my brother in law, drinking some fruity drinks. Both, intoxicated. I was tired of dancing so I plopped down on a chair next to my brother in law. That’s when my brother decided it’s time to be honest and said…”I’ve done some terrible things to my sisters when they were little…” I know right, he sounded remorseful.  

My brother in law got up from the table leaving us alone. My brother looked at me and stated, “If you weren’t my sister I would bring you home and fuck you.”

Yes people, this was his drunk statement to me! So, you be the judge…

A guy with horrible sick sense of humor, a pervert, or a straight up pedophile???? 

(Wait, I’m pretty sure that my last post was about judgement but judge the fuck out of him, he deserves it!)

I Need a Redo

I’ve struggled with an eating disorder for years and years. Struggle for me was never being really okay with my weight. Hating my body. Constantly thinking of food as either good for you or bad for you. I worried about calories, carbs, and fats. Three years ago, my eating disorder got its fangs into my depression and threw me into a life of restricting, binging, and purging with no care about the damage it did. I was 5’2” and went into treatment at 103 lbs. Sorry if numbers are triggering but if you know my writing, it’s what I do.

At that time, they said my ideal weight was between 125 and 135. I maintained that weight for a while, I’m not sure when it went wrong, but eventually I gained weight. Last year, Covid hit, and loneliness and depression came back along with my eating disorder. I was 143lbs. When my eating disorder came back. The depression worsened. When I tried to kill myself and went away to a residential treatment facility I was 129 lbs. Reflecting now on that weight, I actually liked my weight. I wasn’t in love with my body but I didn’t feel the need to hide it either. I was fine wearing a bathing suit and comfortable in shorts. I didn’t need weight restoration but they packed the pounds back on me. They wanted my body to decide it’s size. My body is a toddler, you can’t trust it to make the right decision. 

So now, I’m back up to 145 lbs. And some would consider me in total relapse. My behaviors have all returned and I’m out walking every day. I want that 129 lb. body back. I want to get that body back and work on keeping it that way. The only reason I even went into treatment last time was because of the botched suicide attempt. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have bothered to go. I wasn’t sick. My labs weren’t perfect but they weren’t horrible either. But, they wouldn’t allow me back to work until a doctor said it was okay, and none of my doctors or therapists were willing to sign me off as someone who’s got her shit together. 

Now, here I am again, trying hard to latch onto my eating disorder. I don’t have the patience and will power to do this the right way. I’m someone who likes results and if I can get there sooner by using behaviors that I’ve grown to trust, then that is what I’m going to do. 

I’m not relapsing, I’m just looking for a redo

Don’t judge…

I can’t stand the size of my body. I hate it from head to toe. Last summer, I was okay with my body. It wasn’t perfect but it was 15 pounds lighter. I felt more comfortable. I wore shorts without thought. Where did that body go? Can I get it back? I need to walk more, eat less, and cut out the alcohol. But why? That’s what everyone asks me. Why? Why does it have to be that way? Why do you like  yourself fifteen pounds lighter? I don’t fucking know. Am I being judged by people, I feel like I am, but others say different things. They say I’m not being judged by my friends and family. That people that care about me won’t judge me. That the people who are judging me are not worth my time. 

We all feel judged. You can’t tell me we don’t. In fact, last month I flew Southwest, and everyone on that plane was judged. It’s the first time I had ever flown Southwest and if you haven’t, let me tell ya, there are no assigned seats. I KNOW! Weird huh! How would they identify my dead body strapped to seat B, row 12 if we had crashed into a field somewhere. It’s all about the number on your ticket. The lower the number, the sooner you get to board the plan. On my flight out, I was one of the last people on the plane. As I walked down and looked at the open seats, I was judging people. I was looking for someone to sit with that I thought wouldn’t smell, wouldn’t talk to me, would be easy to win the armrest war. I finally sat between two men who looked like they showered, wore nice clothes, and were already busy on their phones. 

On the way back, it was the opposite, I was the one being judged. I was one of the first, alone in my row, waiting to be judged. I tried not to make eye contact. I started to wonder why I wasn’t being chosen to sit next to. Apparently, I must not look too intimidating because a new mom with a two month old baby sat next to me. We kept her diaper bag in the middle seat. The baby was cute and such a good baby. She hardly cried and I was happy to help retrieve things from the bag. I would like to think she could see the mom in me. 

I spent my first twenty years judging people and being judged. I had siblings that I wanted to be like. Siblings that I didn’t want to be like. There were students that my parents wanted me to be more like and kids my parents wanted me to stay away from. If there was no judgement, would there be cliques? Would the jocks think they were better than the geeks? We stereotyped everyone. Put them in boxes with their peers. The band geeks, the drama squad, the populars… we all judged each other and we all were judged.

So how the hell am I supposed to all of a sudden pretend that’s not happening now. How can I ignore the people that are looking at me? Because guess what, let me be honest with you, I still judge people. I’m not proud of it, I wish I didn’t. But I do. I’ve heard it in my head. Pointing out the girls who I wish I looked like and who I was glad I didn’t. Come on people! We all do it so don’t tell me I need to stop thinking about it!

So why do I want that 15 pound less body? Am I worried about being judged. Yes, yes I am but I realize that the worst judgement is coming from my own mind. My own self-talk is extremely judgemental. 

Hey, I speak the truth..don’t judge.

What not to say….

There is an unwritten rule about a lot of things, one of those is, what NOT to say to people at certain times. It’s got to suck to hang around me, worried about what not to say. Ted struggles with it daily. He says things about my Ed that are not helpful at all. I’ve learned to just be okay with it, there are just too many rules. If I was to point out every infraction he makes, we would be done for sure. Soo… he goes on saying things and in my mind, I continue to correct him. 

If you asked him for a list of “what not to say to him”, he would probably tell you there isn’t one, but there is. I’ve “hurt” his feelings a few times. Why do I think it’s weird when a grown man says, “You hurt my feelings”? Anyways, I know I can’t joke about possibly being a lesbian with my friends. It pisses him off, which I don’t understand. I’m supposed to let him vent and just sit back and listen even when half of what he is saying is not what I want to hear. I can’t say anything negative about “love” and “relationships”. And there are a few others as well. 

The other day, he said something that rubbed me the wrong way. He tapped into the, “what not to say because I’ve been sexually assaulted” things. Ed is getting in the way of intimacy. I just can’t get over my size. Yes, selfish of me but I really don’t care. But the other night, I wanted to test the waters, to see how I would feel so I started something but didn’t finish. And when I say something, it was just a very passionate kiss. His comment, “Don’t start something unless you’re going to finish it”. WOWWWWWWW really! I’ve heard it before, moments before I was date raped. Let’s just say, I’ve not tested the water sense. It’s to fucking cold. 

Another thing he has used in the past is one of my ex husband’s favorites, “or else.” That threat that something bad is going to happen to me if I continue to do what I’m doing. I never found out what the “or else” included. I would ask him and he would just say “you don’t want to know.” My kids have come to the conclusion that there is no, or else, that he’s just blowing smoke out of his ass. Their words, not mine. 

I’m just wondering, is it time to write a few books? “Things you don’t ask or say to a…..” There would be so many,   “Things you don’t say to a pregnant woman” “Things you don’t say to an alcoholic” “Things you don’t say to someone with an ED” Things you don’t say to an assault victim.. You get my point. 

Maybe I’ll carry around a buzzer and any time I hear someone say something I’ll just push the button and point it out. I would be everyone’s best friend, NOT. For now, I’ll just complain about it to you all and keep my mouth shut. 

“Or else….”

Personal choice, is it?

Personal choice. That’s what Ted’s been telling me lately. The fact that I want to work a little over the summer instead of hanging out with him all day is a personal choice. The fact that I put 110% of myself into planning for a lesson is a personal choice. The fact that I feel the need to get my school work done early in the week is a personal choice. The fact that I want to diet and exercise is a personal choice. Yes, I get it, they are all personal choices but what he doesn’t understand is that for me it’s just not that easy.

I know I worry about a lot of things but what I’ve noticed this last week is my racing thoughts. My mind is like a tornado. I’m forgetting things all the time. I go to say something and my thoughts are instantly gone. It’s so frustrating.

Because of this, those personal choices that Ted says that I have become much more. They become personal have to’s. They are fueled by anxiety and fear.  And what if I don’t do these, what will be the consequences? Are they really that bad? Umm…. actually….

I’m taking a grad course. The assignments are posted for the whole 10 weeks but you start a module on a Monday and everything has to be turned in by Sunday at midnight. I have all week to work on it. I don’t have anything pressing to do after school, but my mind won’t just say, “Calm down, do it tomorrow.” If I don’t do it, it just sits in the back of my mind, like an itch that I can’t reach. Just enough to annoy me and take my focus off other things. So I do it. Then I have it done early and think, I should do next week’s assignment too. Why, well what if something happens next week that I don’t have time to do it. Okay, so let’s really think about this for a moment. Let me sit and do my best to be rational for a second. Worst case scenario, I don’t do the work, I don’t pass the class, I quit grad school. That’s it. I don’t need my masters. 

Another worry I have all the time is money. I have enough but I’m always worried that something is going to come up and I won’t have enough. In the summer, without a job, even a few hours a week, makes me feel as if I don’t have enough money. I worry that something will happen to my car or the girls will need something and I won’t have the money. Yes we all worry about money. And my summer job will just be a few hours a week. So what happens if I don’t work??? Well, my paycheck will stay the same. I get paid throughout the summer. My car might die and I might have to borrow money from Ted. I might have to bail my friend Zoey out of jail. This is what worries me? I’m only looking at working for six hours a week. It will be some extra spending money. But what happens if I don’t work this summer…. Actually, nothing. Nothing will happen except I’ll be sitting around, not working and thinking to myself, “I should be working” because I’ve worked every summer that I can remember. 

Planning for lessons is also something I do excessively. I never feel like I’m really done. That I could plan more. I spend hours and hours researching lessons and creating my own. I spend a ridiculous amount of time making interactive slides and activities. I try to make them as engaging as I can. I get to school an hour early, stay an hour late, and usually spend four to six hours a week on the weekends… just planning. Ted thinks I do too much. That I over plan. That it’s my personal choice to work myself so hard. I get it, he’s an outsider, he doesn’t know the hell that is going on in my head. They need to be perfect. If I don’t do them, if I cut back a few hours, what will happen? Actually, if I really think about it, I probably would be okay. But that’s the problem, I can’t just tell myself to relax.

I’ve covered how my ED, another thing that Ted thinks is a personal choice, causes me extreme anxiety. 

My mind is often my worst enemy. I walk around in circles. worried that I’m supposed to be doing something. I have to set timers on things so I don’t get wrapped up into something for longer than I need. I forget what I’m doing. I worry about tomorrow, then the next day and the next day after that. Ted comes home from school and takes a little nap. There is no way that I can just shut down my mind for a little while mid afternoon like he does. When we watch TV I have to be doing a puzzle on my Ipad. I have a hamster in my head running on it’s little wheel, talking to me. 

I’m highly medicated. Possibly over medicated. But at night, without them, I can’t fall asleep. If I close my eyes before the meds kick in, a whirlwind of thoughts and pictures play across the back of my eye lids. They don’t make sense and sometimes I find myself chasing those thoughts. Afraid that those thoughts mean something. 

But, as much as I’m sitting here bitching about my wild crazy ADD mind, I’m thinking about what happens when it does stop, which it does occasionally. When the racing stops. When my mind is quiet and I’m not asleep. When I can hear my own heartbeat and feel each breath. The ED and SI thoughts appear and weirdly, they are truly calming