BIG bad day, and it was going so well

Big bad binge last night. Big bad morning today. Big bad news this afternoon.

But I am still going – just more slowly.

I spontaneously invited my brother and his boys to my house yesterday. He kept saying he wanted to visit, and I figured I’d feel safer if they came here where I’m in control. I haven’t seen him or my nephews for about 2 years, and they haven’t been to my house in about 4 yrs. so a BIG part of me wanted to do this, and my therapist said to visit on non-holidays to reduce stress and triggers.

Brother texts – Can Mom come too? I stared at that text, not knowing how to answer. I really wanted just him and the boys, that was enough. BUT my mom can’t drive down here herself and the torment of not inviting her would be so much worse than her presence.

— Whatever you want, either way is fine, it’d be nice to see her–

See I wasn’t sure if he wanted her or not and was trying to figure out if I wanted her, so I left it up to him. He brought her.

The visit was ok. We caught up on work stories, we both have new jobs. He seemed oddly happy, for someone being held hostage in his own house from a fiancée-squatter that won’t leave. I was glad to see his spirits so high.

Mom was good ole mom. at least I know what to expect. nothing horrible, really it was fine. I had a few triggering moments, but nothing too powerful. I was smiling most of the visit and thought I was relaxed.

So I was surprised at my BIG binge after they left. We went out to a restaurant and I cleaned my plate, where usually I can only eat half. then at home I wanted more. I cut up cucumbers and filled a bowl with them and a bit of lite ranch. I felt the pressure in my belly but the gnawing emptiness that comes from elsewhere grew. I wanted sweets now. I have not been buying candy and cookies, to limit my binge attacks – but I found the kids lunch cupboard. I had 2 fudge dipped chocolate chip granola bars, and 2 swiss rolls. Then I moved on to fruit, some mandarin oranges because the sugar fiend was still barking.

I fell into a restless sleep, and woke a bit later needing alka-seltzer, feeling bloated and ill. I had bad dreams all night, the run around chasing, doors locked, can’t scream dreams that used to plague me constantly.

I barely got the kids to school this morning, and then went back to bed instead of to work or to curves. I woke up just before noon and attempted to work, but nothing was making sense. I called my therapist and got the BIG bad news. She had to take emergency leave of absence – until about January, but they’d be happy to schedule me with someone else? Receptionist asked what my issues were, stress or anxiety? . . . . Ummm, I have too many complicated issues to name right now. She said no problem hon, I’ll give a call to your girl and see who she recommends for you.

Mental fog turned into mental storm. I’ve relied on her to keep me stable for over 10 years now. How could I possibly re-tell my tale to someone new? She won’t understand me. I’ll have to watch her grimace as she reads my file and recounts my horrific youth. Part of me wants to think this change could be good for me – a fresh perspective! But I’ve been doing so well, I don’t want anything fresh.

I just had 3 plates full of lasagna and I’m ready to run out for some candy right now, because the need is strong. my thoughts are frantic, obsessive, worried about ALL future events instead of my wonderful going from moment to moment balanced thoughts I’ve ben growing used to.

Did my family’s visit trigger this much in me, even though I didn’t feel it at the time?

 

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15 thoughts on “BIG bad day, and it was going so well

  1. My dear friend.
    The hardest thing to do for me is to put all of those old triggerers, family members, in one place at the same time. I can empathize with your food adventure. I have done it many times.
    Warmly
    Jim

    • Triggerers. love it. That is who they are, such a good word. Why does the food call out to me, what solace does it provide? It is not comfort food at that point, something else entirely. Thank you for making me feel I’m not alone, and calling it an adventure. that helps. xx

  2. Hugs. Yea, it can be that way. Too much at one time. Deep breathe. A set back is not a start over. You are amazing in your progress. I know that a set back doesn’t feel like progress. However, you are already analyzing what happened and looking at your options. That is huge.

    Mega bummer on the counselor. I’ve had 2 counselors move, now I am working on looking for my 3rd. I learned that telling my story gets easier. It is not as difficult each time. I wish I could say it will work but I just fired a counselor after 2 visits. She didn’t have a clue how to behave with me and I am not willing to train her on my dollar. I am cheering for you. You know the steps of getting back on your feet. One of the many times I hit bottom again my counselor asked me the advantage I have now. I grinned and answered, “I know the territory.” You know the territory. You got on your feet before….you will do it again. You are amazing, hold on to that thought. Cheering for you.

    • Thank you for the cheers! I hear them!

      Yes, seeing new counselor this coming week. trying to stay open minded, but I have met sooo many terrible ones over the years before I met my current one. I just wish I could audition on their dime, not my own.

      Ah yes, hitting rock bottom is fine, I know my way around. I know how to climb up again. I don’t think I hit the bottom this time, but I was caught off guard how low I went before catching it. Like a knock on my head and I had to come to slowly.

  3. You chose to face one trigger and had another dumped on you, which was actually two triggers in one, the extra person and having to make the decision you didn’t want to make. Two big triggers in one, on top of a trigger you chose to handle. Ack! So sorry to hear about your counselor! Praying you are blessed with the strength to hang on and the compassion with yourself to recognize you have a lot to deal with and are working hard to handle the negative stuff in a healthier manner. Little by little. You’re aware, and you did choose cucumbers first. Wish there were a magical snap of the fingers to make everything all right, but we know there isn’t. Keep fighting for you!

    • once again you cut right through it to the core – that being forced to make a decision I did not want to make with no good outcome either way. I didn’t realize what turmoil that simple text caused me. I put myself out there, took a step towards my brother, and felt pushed away and confused by his question. Why must it always involve mom? and there is no good way to refuse. I do think now I should have said no, just you this time, not up to too many people at once. he would have understood. but when he asked, I didn’t feel like I could say that, that I had no choice. ugh. why do I revert to that little girl every time I deal with them, even on simple interactions? I think I just need more practice. habits are easier. I can do this.

      Thank you for noticing I chose the cucumbers first. I am trying so hard to improve and treat my body well. I forget how hard I’m working sometimes and only see my daily failures. There was a time when no fresh fruit/veggies were even in my house, let alone my plate. I need to own that step forward and build on it. maybe?

  4. Yes you’re binging because you needed to control the situation. You are in control and you will be ok even without the therapist. Your eating is because you are stuffing big feelings down that want to come out but are afraid to. You can get those feelings out to a different person as long as they are someone you will feel safe with. Then you won’t feel the need to eat too much. I have been there. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

    • I do think control and stuffing down these enormous feelings is part of it. I want to let those big feelings out, I feel like I’ve given them the welcome, and yet this behavior continues. I’m so hopeful the new therapist is someone I can feel safe with and we can work through this, and maybe she’ll even have new ideas for me. Thank you so much for your encouragement 🙂

  5. I cringed when I read about you receiving your brothers text. I’ve had similar experiences. I imagine you probably were triggered by your visitor. She is the trigger to a past you’re trying to heal from
    Jings, therapist off until January…. that’s a very long time.. I can appreciate how this must make you feel. I don’t know how I’d cope having to cover the same ol’ ground with someone else I hope something positive works out real soon. The waiting and lack of communication can be a real pain in the …..

    • Thanks so much for this. Yes even when my mom is fairly well behaved – my guard is up and I feel so small around her. And then that text made me feel trapped, here I was reaching out to him in a way that felt safe to me, and he took it away. no matter my answer, the happy spontaneous feeling I had for the visit, the hope I had to heal my relationship with my brother, was gone in an instant.

      • I have faced similar experiences with my sister. They try so hard to heal the rift, but that only seems to belittle past experiences.

  6. The simple answer is, yes.
    Sometimes we don’t realize that even small things like easy visits still have triggers hidden in them, it is nearly impossible they wouldn’t. The harder answer is to be able to pull back from the triggers and sooth yourself. Generally, what I do is remind myself that no person within the group I just saw / visited with is my enemy or can harm me and I have moved past the history the represent. I sit quietly with my alternative response, whether it is writing or exercise or art.

    As to the therapist, please don’t project. Let them get you to someone new. Let the new person read the file and let them get you past the immediate need. Don’t be afraid.

    • I find both parts to be such good advice. I forgot to remind myself that I’m ok, before and after the visit. I have moved past the history they represent – and yet I fall back in to my confused, frightened little girl mode so easily. I was not myself during the visit – I was who they expected me to be. to sum it up – I felt – not enough.

      and yes of course you are right. This therapist may be great or may not and I should not project, just see how it goes. But I am afraid. very afraid. I don’t like meeting new people, ever, it is draining even if I enjoy the time or like the person.

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