Friday, November 14, 2008


So as I wrote yesterday, I had a meltdown.

I'm not proud of it - but I'm also letting it go - thanks to the help of two of my friends, both named Kelly.

These last couple of weeks have been very stressful. Things that I had thought I was over - abandonment issues, abuse issues, and life changing issues have all come back around during the last couple of weeks. In addition, I've officially given up on something that I had hoped with all of my might would happen. And my greiving over the loss of what could have been has been intensely painful.

And apparently, my body reacted VERY badly to all of this stress - so it stopped functioning as it should - in a very major way. And that led me to seeing a specialist last week - who told me that working out was a no-no. Sure, I could walk for 20 minutes, but no more running on the eliptical or even lifting weights. So in the middle of dealing with all that stress and not being able to do much physically, I had a choice. I could eat my emotions as I have for the last 20 years, I could quit and say this is just too hard to do without food. Or I could stop. I could stop, breathe, and learn how to cope.

I've started to watch A&E's "Intervention" which is where they tape addicts and their families for a time and then they have an intervention - where the treatment is paid for. At any rate, one of the things that they talk about on that show is how addicts, who have been numbing pain for years, when they stop their abuse they have to learn how to cope.

And that's where I am. Very few coping skills. The one thing that I had learned to turn to - that was good for my body, mind, and health - was no longer an option and won't likely be for weeks. And unloading on people that didn't know about the traumatic things in my life didn't seem like much of an option at the time - I would have to diclose all of the bad stuff...and it was something that I just didn't feel capable of doing right then. Reaching out to the people that live away from here seemed too hard to do repeatedly. I tried...I really did. But the few people I called were busy - promising to call later and didn't. Or after me leaving a sad message on their voicemail they didn't call back. And I know I have other people that could've helped. I do. I just couldn't find my voice to reach out. So I didn't. I wanted to have a safe haven without having to beg for it. I wanted to have someone open their arms and let me break the fuck down, someone to pat me on the back and tell me that it was going to be all right - even if it isn't.

Instead, I let it build - thinking that I could stave off the breakdown. In the past I would've comforted myself in unhealthy ways. But I chose not to continue the unhealthy cycle.

And although I'm proud of that, I'm not proud of how I threw a full on breakdown at a rental car place. I just couldn't keep it together. I just couldn't be strong anymore. And I just couldn't deal - I just couldn't try again. Immediately afterwards, I called Peoria Kelly who talked me out of the immediate danger of that storm. We came up with the plan to at least take a half day from work. To sleep. To heal. She listened to me and apologized for not calling me back, for not being there. And that helped. A lot.

Yesterday, I was in the eye of the storm - realizing that any move I made would whip me back into the storm of emotions. Because although I had gotten out of immediate danger, I still didn't have a plan. I still was processing...any move would once again mean that I had to choose how to cope.

So I accepted Denver Kelly's offer to meet me after work and grab a beer. I leaned on her shoulder and cried about the shit that's happened for the past 20 years - half afraid that at some point, she'd get up, shake her head and say that my life was just too crazy. But she didn't. She listened with sympathy and strength. When I was done, we came up with a plan on how to deal with the issues. She reminded me that I won't see the car people again. And I know that they get shit on daily so realistically, it's not like yesterday was much worse for them. I know - that's not a good excuse, but it is the reality. And it did release the guilt that I had.

I know that if the environment wasn't exactly the way that it was - my physical pain, and the revisiting emotional pain, the absence or refusal to cope in ways that I have in the past, and a myriad of things that were and are beyond my control, it wouldn't have happened. I wouldn't have been forced to break.

Now I do have a plan, one that involves getting some professional help in learning coping skills that I can do for myself and by myself. Yesterday taught me that I can lean on people. I have worked past the awkwardness of sharing intensely personal things.

I feel that I've emerged from the storm a little weary, but also having grown. My spirit is bruised, but it is stronger.


Bonnie said...

Take it one day at a time. Tell yourself each day that it will be a good day, and if it isn't don't beat yourself up for it. I suffer from depression, and before the doctors found a medication that helped it took everything I had not to have several meltdowns. When I feel myself losing control, I try and focus on the positives in my life.

POD said...

That was an amazing post.
I'm a food addict and I know what it's like to not have food to eat when that is all you've known. It's really hard when those feelings rear their ugly heads.
I feel for your suffering.

It probably sounds trite to say but I totally agree with Bonnie's statement of "one day at a time." Sometimes with addictions and feelings and having to cope without the usual methods, it can be one minute at a time. Good luck with this.

Charlie Hills said...

Wow, that didn't sound like "HappyFunPants" at all. Not even just ... pants, even. I've only known you maybe twenty minutes total, so I can't pretend to know or understand everything going on. Just hope things go well for you. Hang in there.

Jen said...

My dear Sweet Anne,

I've been MIA from reading blogs lately and I come over here to read this!! I am so very sorry, not sure what to say but know that I love you and will be praying for you!! I hope now that you are a couple of days out of the eye of the storm things are calming down a bit!!

Keep your head high and hand in there!!

Love you!


the girls' moma said...

Oh, my God, Anne,

Let's talk soon.

I promise, I PROMISE, that time makes it better. I'm so proud of the reaching out you DID do.

I love you.