Below is a very sporadically written passage. It is my notes from therapy...yes, I take my computer to therapy...I know BIG DORK.
Reader's Digest Version: I have to look to myself to be my safe place. I have to rescue myself. All the while leaning on God to guide me as to what His will is.
When a negative comes up, it hooks me. Vague sense of being punished…if you could figure out what you have done wrong you could fix it…co dependence…much like your dad on your birthday. When you can’t feel him, you rely on what you know. You are lying to yourself that you are alone….he promises you joy, Are you sick of the dating? Are you boxing up what is on the inside because it hurts…..not knowing what you feel is feeding the anxiety, are you being honest, you are fighting the attachment and the attention hunger, in order to manage the anxiety, you have to be truly honest with your feelings. Learning how to trust Him when you can’t feel him. Learning how to stay and grow your roots deep…wait for the doors to open. Learning how to trust Him when you can’t see his hand…training yourself with self talk….no more stinking thinking. Identify thought processes…try not to be impulsive…which undermines your self esteem…KNOW YOURSELF…don’t let the anxiety make your decisions….are there patterns that I keep repeating…wisdom is learning from past mistakes….don’t make this a way of life. Who is my safe person? Nail your identity down with God, make him your first defense, stabilizing factor….unspoken fear…what is my guarantee that they will stay? God will, it takes awhile to feel that constant presence….sometimes you don’t feel him….see the anxiety like surfing…ride the wave back into shore….don’t listen to the brain noise…anxiety is so close to fear. Don’t Be Afraid, I will never leave you ever, I see you…Love God. You are God, and I am not.
Be observant of what calms the anxiety…bath, music, candles…be aware of your feelings…if you aren’t feeling anxious, what are you feeling…WRITE ABOUT IT. Need a healthy coping pattern….
On my way home, list all of the things that you are thankful for.
In case you cannot tell...my therapist is a very strong Christian...not just in words, but in practice. She often pauses to think...she is praying that God will give her the words to help me.
I don't know that I necessarily feel any better today, but I do have some useful tools to combat what I am feeling. I know how to give my mind a "break" in the middle of the rollercoaster of thought.
Oh....and my next venture....if I don't start exercising...these episodes will get worse...and I hate exercising...dag nabit.
The WRONG Path
I am having a REALLY hard day today...despite my efforts to run to God. My anxiety has been so active for the last three days that I have been medicating...well, today I just couldn't face the world. I went to work, for only a minute, then left in tears that I couldn't hold back. I don't understand what is going on in my life. I fell SOOO lost, so lonely, so unhappy, so less than. I am meeting my therapist for an emergency session. I had hope I wouldn't have to do this...I have been doing so well...what hooked me? What am I doing wrong that my body is attacking itstef? Why is my mind so scattered that I cannot have a clear thought. I feel like I need to be in a padded room. I want someone to rescue me. I look to God, and today it feels like it is so distant. I just want someone to hold me, to tell me it will be ok. I am fighting every urge in my body to run to a trusted friend in hopes of being held. have I done something so drasticaly wrong that I am being punished in this life? I don't recall killing anyone, or anything that bad, what have I done to deserve this?? Is this supposed to scare me back to God???
I feel like I have chosen the wrong path in my life on so many levels...and it all comes back to simple decisions I have made in my past. The job thing...well, I was told today that I need to seek entry level employment elsewhere...because I can not show my experience. It is a double edged sword...I cannot afford to go back to entry level...financially, emotionally...I hate this. I want to sart over. I want to run. I want to run away where no one knows me. I want to cry.
Hunger Part Two
You will notice a theme over the next few days...if I am doing my bible study.
Yesterday, I spent a lot of time alone. I cleaned my room, cleaned out my closet, and was just ALONE for most of the day. By about four o'clock, I was tired of being alone. I made several phone calls to see if I could go do something fun with someone else. As usual, no response. As I lay in bed last night, I was making a futile attempt to pray. In my mind I was screaming. Help me, hold me. I realized that I had wasted some very valuable time yesterday being hungry for the wrong things. I was having attention hunger, attachment hunger. My anxiety has been getting the best of me lately. I could have spent the day with God. I could have been talking to Him while I was cleaning. Then I wouldn't have been alone. I wouldn't have had my worldly hungers. I have learned through therapy that identifying the problem or wrongdoing is half the battle....lesson learned. I don't want to go to bed screaming anymore. I want to know the calm that only He can bring me. I don't want to seek the attention of others to fulfill that hunger, I want Him to fulfill it. I can honestly say, today, that I know that there is a reason I am not in a romantic relationship with anyone....I am being taught a lesson...being forced to my knees to re-evaluate my hungers.
My bible study this morning was also about hunger....notice the theme??? It was about being hungry for His word. I have never really understood the bible. In my mind, it seems outdated, and I have a VERY difficult time relating it to my life, and understanding what it is saying. I have even gone as far as to read "The Message", which is a contemporary version...I still struggle. Today's lesson made a little sense. It explained that we should be hungry for His word. I have always thought that the bible should speak to me...about my life...and if you are living your life as Christ did, it does. In a sense, I guess I have always thought that the bible should be about me. What I have come to realize this morning is that it is...but not really. It is the biography of God and Jesus, and the world....if I am living my life as Christ lived His...then it would be about me. Since I am not, it doesn't feel that way. I am so very thankful that I have a clearer view of this. Am I hungrier for His word? I guess so...I am trying.
I am so very tired of screaming. I want so desperately to be heard...am I screaming in the wrong directions?
Can I be as hungry for Him as I have been for a sense of attachment and attention???
I have realized that my blog writing is very much like my relationship with God. When I am not writing, I am not praying. When I am not thinking about my blog, I am not thinking about God. So, when you notice my absence from the blogging world, you can pretty much rest assured that I am telling God to "talk to the hand". Although this is not what I want to admit, I have come to realize the reality of it.
Let's do a recap of my life since the 15th.
Romance - I have spent lots of time with my long lost valentine. It is a very strange relationship. We are both dealing with some of the same issues in our lives regarding work, relationships, anxiety, etc. The difference is that I have come just a little farther than he has at this point. We talk VERY openly about our lives. You could almost say that we are completely naked to each other, and there is a wonderful air of comfort with that. On another note though, I am COMPLETELY trusting God with this one. I don't know if we are to be romantically involved for the rest of our lives, or if we are just to be dear friends. Like I said, I am trusting God with that. The issue is...is he a divine gift, or a distraction from God's will?
Career - I am so bored with my job. I am not making the kind of money that I would like, I am not getting much satisfaction out of what I am doing. I struggle with my boss all of the time as I cannot make her "hear" me. I have an opportunity that has found me, and I am pursuing it whole heartedly, but with this too, I am trusting God. It is out of my hands at this point and I am trusting Him to direct me. The issue again....divine gift or distraction?
Religion - well, I went to bed last night VERY early...8 to be exact. I slept ALL night...for those of you that suffer from anxiety, you will know what a feat this truly is. My church partner will not be attending services with me, so I woke up and decided to spend some time with God. My bible study...that I was supposed to have completed almost a month ago, was wonderful this morning. It talked about being truly hungry for His will. The lesson spoke to me...as it always does (I wish I could remember that when I decide to tell God to "talk to the hand"). James Chapter 4 was the reading for today and I read the Message version. It was kind of like getting your hand slapped. It reminded me of what I REALLY need to be doing with my life. The author of the study is also a great inspiration. After reading today, I have taken a quote from her that I will write on my mirror to remind me every morning what my job is: "Your job is to be hungry enough to receive His direction."
Are you hungry enough?
OH MY GOSH!!!
That is what keeps running through my head. I will try to tell you all about why without divulging anyone's identity...if you need names, e-mail me.
OH MY GOSH...ok, so I was sitting at home yesterday, not really doing anything...just enjoying my day off. I get an instant message from an old familiar name. I thought surely this can't be who I think it is. Memories of my first valentine(he was my preschool sweetheart), my first kiss(he was also my jr. high bo), and an amazing friend instantly ran through my mind at the speed of a freight train. It was HIM...
I won't go into any more detail, but I cancelled my Valentine's date...last minute...I know, I am HORRIBLE, but I hung out with my long lost first love and had the greatest time reminiscing.
The weirdest part....this is the SECOND time this has happened between us...I moved away in kindergarten, then came back in jr.high, and now this....
What a great Valentine's Day!!!
Ba Ba Black Sheep
Here is Jesus' promise to you. "My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father's hand" (John 10:27-29).
I am not really sure why, but I have always considered myself to be a bit of a black sheep in my family. (and when I say family, I mean the grandchildren of my Grandmother) I guess it is because I am the only girl, the only divorced grandchild, the "reckless one". These are all MY thoughts. No one has ever given me any indication of this, but it is the role that I have put myself in. I insure that there are very few expectations of me with regards to my family. I tend to be present, emotionally and physically, only when it is convenient or necessary for me. I have also treated my Christian walk in the same way. There is ALWAYS something else to do, somewhere else to be. Maybe it goes back to my tendancy to run from the things that make me uncomfortable. I don't really know. The reason I tell you all of this is because I am reading a ten step process to "Get to know God" this morning. It is enlightening. What I found int he first two passages is that I KNOW that I am saved, and that God loves me. Much like I KNOW that my family loves me. The two entities love me no matter what I do, and I have taken advantage of that on many occasions. In this ten step process, the second step is to tell someone. Reader's Digest Version - share your news in hopes that they too might find God. Well, I also think that it is prudent to tell someone for an element of accountability. I have SO many wonderful, Christian influences in my life, that I feel like they do not need me to tell them the good news, but that in telling them about my good news, might be renewed in their own faith....and, selfishly, as usual, might add an air of accountability to my Chrisitanity.
I have a dear friend that I have been going to church with. She understands my motivations for doing things, and has been able to "make" me go to church with her. How does she do this? Well, she reminds me every week that we have a "date" on Sunday. She also uses her 18 month old son...who lights up when he sees me. She knows that I do not want to let her down, and that I love her son. This gets me to church every time, and once there, I am quickly reminded of the true reason that I am there. Would I go if she didn't do this to me? I am not sure, but at this point, anything to get me there is worth it. To my family and friends...I am admitting to you HOW TO GET MY ATTENTION...if you want my physical and emotional presence....make it so that I cannot run. I shouldn't be telling you this, because on many levels, it might seem like you are making me do something that you think I don't want to do...well, that is not the case. I love you all so much that I would stand in front of a speeding bus to save your lives. I have said once before that when given the option, I chose to be alone so that
I don't have to put on my mask. Well, I am hanging up my mask. Packing it away, deep in the closet. Therapy is teaching me how to do this, and I am SOOOOOOO thankful...to God, for leading me in this direction. I used to make "no promises", now I make these: I promise to love you, I promise to be present, I promise to make whatever sacrifice necessary to be a part of your lives. Please help me to be accountable to God, and to you.
I love you.
The Blogging Mind
For any of you that blog, I am sure you have the same thoughts about blogging that I do. I often think of blogs throughout the day or week that I would like to write about. Since this has become my "journal", I am no longer carrying one, so I do not write these down. This being said, I have had LOTS of thoughts in the last few days about things that I would like to write about....but I don't remember them all. This one is a combination of all of the ones that I can remember.
I have been doing a lot of thinking about where my therapy is going....I have graduated to every other week instead of every week....a very scary graduation, but good nonetheless. I believe that she has given me the tools to deal with the situations in my life that crop up...now I just have to put them in motion. I have decided to keep my normal therapy days to myself. If I don't go to therapy, I plan on spending that time for me. Talking to God, being alone, reflecting on how I am doing, etc.
I have also been thinking a lot about my dating situations, I have compromised some of the things that I was looking for in a mate in an effort to just get out there. I am taking stock of that again, and will be getting back to my original thoughts of "qualifications" again. Some of these things include, but are not limited to...no children from previous relationships (just can't go down that road again), belief in God (not willing to compromise on this), level of maturity and the ability to see the world as I do, and the list goes on...but these are the big ones.
Hmmm what else....
Oh...running....I have a tendancy to run, to turn my back when I don't like the situation...well, I have thought that my therapist is the only think keeping me where I am right now. My roomate also has the same tendancies....not a good combination, BUT we had a long conversation yesterday about the fact that neither of us are particularly happy (hers involves a marriage, mine does not). I went back to a previous entry (Divine Sunday) and read her about the children's sermon and the sheep. We talked about this for a very LONG time. We are two lost sheep, and instead of running to seek God, we must lay down and ask Him to find us. We must keep our eyes open, and have faith, but He will leave his flock to find the one lost sheep. I prayed that she could experience the same feeling that I get when I can FEEL God with me. I don't know if she did, and she might never admit it, but prayers are the best gift that anyone can give.
Prayer requests: my FAB roomie's happiness, my family and friends' well being, and whatever you can muster about my future. Things are very unsure right now, but I have faith that I am being led somewhere.
Sometimes therapy is great and it makes me feel better, sometimes it sends me on a whirlwind trip of sadness. Last night, I am not really sure what it did. I quickly pushed it aside so that I could hang out with some friends. Well, this morning, I am a little disturbed. We did an imagination exercise to see if my anxious mind is capable of relaxation. This will sound like hypnotherapy, but it wasn't. I listened to a CD that helped me to tap into my imagination, and to have a little vacation. The problem with this was, it was not a vacation. My imagination scared me. The CD instructed me to visualize myself walking down a set of stairs that had a large wooden door at the base. Check...no problem. Well, as I walked down the stairway, I got more and more relaxed...the door...open, no problem. As I crossed the threshold, I was supposed to see someone that I could ask a question of. I figured that I would see a God like figure or a trusted adviser. Quite the opposite. I was immersed in a red colored fog, alone. There was a distant dark figure that darted back and forth. This whole scenario was broken with "commercials" of children. Boys, girls, all races and ages. I do not remember anything after that, and my therapist had to "wake me up". I believe I was supposed to ascend the stairs again, but guess I just got lost somewhere along the way. I have never seen myself as a dark person, but am now questioning that. It was very scary. It is not something that I ever want to relive. I know that the issues of my imagination are something that I must work through, but it is easier to learn how to deal with the tangible, worldly issues...like parents, than it is to dive so far into your subconscious to bring this stuff up. Needless to say, I did not sleep well last night, and do not feel well this morning. I feel as thought I am on the verge of an anxiety attack at any moment...and my medication is at home. Neat-o. Well, that is all I really want to write about today. If any of you have thoughts, words of wisdom, or encouragement...I WELCOME them...I am having a rough day.
Oh, on a humorous note, I have ALWAYS had REALLY straight hair...it is now curly...natrually. I am convinced that anxiety can curl your hair. :)