April 30, 2010

Let it Go

Posted in recovery tagged , , , , , , , , , , at 10:38 pm by eddejae

I can barely keep my eyes open as I write this. I am exhausted, even though I slept for 10 hours last night and then took a 2 hour nap. I am emotionally drained. I have spent some long nights this week talking to fellow mental illness sufferers and helping them through their pain. Don’t get me wrong, I love being there for other people. I consider it part of my reason for being here on this earth. Serving as a conduit of love and hope is an essential aspect of who I am and of my journey. However, I recognize the need for me to recharge my batteries and that I may be spreading myself a bit thin.

Combine my new romantic relationship with the current friend and family relationships I work to maintain, plus a plethora of new friends I have met through blogging and facebook who are in need of my support, not to mention the emotional work I am doing in therapy… I am spent. I can feel the exhaustion pulsing through my veins. My mental capacities are worn out. My emotions are all used up. Stress has taken its toll on my body. I’ve avoided cutting, but have been binging much more to compensate. I am so tired. I need some serious TLC. Someone needs to take care of me, just one day. I need a break. Just a day would suffice. Then I would gladly go back to helping my friends, offering my support, advocating the causes that are so important to me, being there for my family, and being a loving girlfriend. But for right now… I need rest. Please…

Let me rest…

Let me close my eyes…

And let the world and everyone in it just disappear…

Just for a moment…

Just let it all go…

Please.

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April 29, 2010

Drained

Posted in recovery tagged , , , , , at 11:29 pm by eddejae

My candle burns at both ends

It will not last the night;

But ah, my foes, and oh, my friends

It gives a lovely light.

~Edna St. Vincent Millay


April 28, 2010

Two Roads Diverged…

Posted in recovery tagged , , , , , , , at 10:33 pm by eddejae

This just about sums it up for me right now. When my own poetic abilities fail me, I know I can always turn to Robert Frost, Emily Dickinson, or Sylvia Plath to compensate for what I lack. 🙂

The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I-
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.


April 27, 2010

Just To Be

Posted in recovery tagged , , , at 11:27 pm by eddejae

I’m not sure what to feel right now.

I don’t if I should be happy.

I don’t know if I should be sad.

I do not feel anything.

And yet I feel calm.

I guess that is all I can ask for in this moment.

Just to be.

Turning Point

Posted in recovery tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 1:34 am by eddejae

And the day came when the risk to remain tight in the bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. ~Anais Nin

The woods are lovely, dark and deep. But I have promises to keep. And miles to go before I sleep. ~Robert Frost

Come to the edge, He said. They said: we are afraid. Come to the edge, He said. They came. He pushed them, and they flew. ~Guillaume Apollinaire

So much has happened over the last few days, I hardly know where to begin.

I’m not sure I know how to adequately express what a roller coaster I’ve been on. I have run the gamut of emotions from ecstatic joy to intense fear. I am exhausted yet I sit here in front of my computer at almost 1AM knowing that if I don’t write about all of this I will regret it. I can’t let it build up like I’ve done so many times before.

As I stated in my last post, I am in love. Now, I have this hunch that for most people, this is a perfectly natural thing bringing nothing but unadulterated joy. Unfortunately, dealing with BPD makes love and relationships much more complicated and emotionally stressful than they need to be. It seems that even the most positive emotion gets muddied by insecurity, fear, pain, jealousy, and even desperation. It is difficult to feel happiness in its purity when bits of memories, past experiences, and the things you are most scared of threaten to drag you back down into misery.

But I’m not going to let that happen, no matter how hard it is or how scared I am.

I must live.

I must love.

Or there will be nothing else left but to die.

I need to give a little bit of background. My now-boyfriend, who I will call… Todd. Yes, Todd. Good name. Anyways… “Todd” has been in my life for six years. He is my best friend and always will be. He knows me better than anyone on the face of the planet, especially myself. We’ve been through so much together. We have dated on and off for the last several years, but it seemed I always ruined it. We could never figure out why I was always pushing him away and then clinging to him for dear life; breaking up and getting back together; the fights; the jealousy; the hurt feelings and broken hearts… I never meant to hurt him. I always loved him with all of my heart, and neither of us could understand why I would say and do things that hurt him, that hurt the relationship, and that hurt myself… especially myself.

We parted ways back in August, which was right before I experienced the hypomanic episode followed by the suicidal crash that sent me to the hospital three times. We had stopped talking, and he didn’t find out about what I had been going through until just a few months ago. He and my mother (who had always been like his second mom) started talking and she was able to fill him in on what had happened. Once he found out I was diagnosed with BPD, he went and bought every book he could find on it. I knew he was communicating with my mother but wasn’t ready to start talking to him yet. I still felt in a fragile state and I didn’t want to mess anything up. I missed him, I knew I loved him and wanted to be with him and was pretty sure he felt the same, but I wanted to wait until I was “ready” for a relationship (because I knew that is what it would become as it is hard to be “just friends” with someone you have such strong feelings for). So I’ve just been going along, hearing about how he’s been doing from my mom (he’s in the Air Force and quite busy with work and training right now) and becoming nice and cozy in the fact that he would be around whenever I decided to come out of my cocoon.

Well, that happened sooner than I thought. And I wasn’t even “ready” yet. We talked on the phone Thursday night for the first time in 9 long months. I broke down. I cried and told him everything I felt for him. How I didn’t ever want to be with anyone else; how sorry I was for hurting him; how badly I felt about my situation; how I was afraid of letting him down, of failing. He told me how much he loved me and missed me. I forgot what it felt like to be loved so unconditionally by someone who could name quite a few reasons for hating me if he wanted to. It was amazing…

And then…

I started to get scared. Scared of failing. Scared of hurting him again. Scared of loving. Scared of having him back in my life. Scared because I knew that talking to him inevitably meant loving him, which would lead to being with him, which would lead to… oh my gosh… living life?!?! I told him, “Give me a month. I”ll be ready to see you in a month.” Just another way to put off what I wanted the most and yet was desperately afraid of.

Loving him meant living my life as I always dreamed it could be.

Loving him meant opening myself up to him and to others.

Loving him meant letting myself be imperfect.

Loving him meant accepting myself as worthy of love, here and now.

Loving him meant not running anymore from the things that make life worth living

Loving him meant becoming alive again.

Loving him meant not WAITING until everything, including myself, was PERFECT.

And. I. Was. Terrified.

As I hung up the phone with Todd, I started to feel like I was sinking into an endless black pit of fear and pain. I had just experienced two hours of complete elation and hope, and suddenly I was falling, falling, falling…

Something became very clear to me.

At that very moment I was standing at a fork in the road. I had a decision to make. There were two paths I could take. Two options, each in complete opposition to each other. The fear of living pulled me one way, the yearning to be loved and to jump back into life again pulled the other. One way seemed less frightening and demanding. The other way appeared risky with the possibility of failure and further pain.

One was to end my life. I admit I seriously contemplated this. Being in love meant feeling. Living meant feeling. Feelings terrify me. As far as I’ve come in my recovery, they still tear me apart. No matter what they are, positive or negative. At times, I would rather die or spend the rest of my life in a mental hospital than to feel. Than to live. Than to take that leap into the unknown.

The other, of course, was to throw myself into life and love. This meant feeling. This meant risking everything. This meant happiness and sadness, joy and pain, sorrow and elation. This meant opening myself up to healing. This meant going outside my comfort zone. This meant no more hiding.

I knew, in that all-important moment, that it was one or the other. I realized I couldn’t mull around in this in-between place anymore, in this limbo, in this stagnant place where I was not going backward, but I was not going full-speed ahead either – more like…drifting with the current. I realized it was driving me insane, that I have been retreating more and more into my own head and withdrawing from life and from other people again. Afraid to live. Wanting to stay safe inside my little shell. I knew I couldn’t do that anymore.

It was either end it all or bite the bullet and jump.

I grappled with this decision. I went back and forth. Between love and fear, hope and despair. In a moment of complete desperation and confusion, I wound up cutting myself pretty badly. I asked my mom to take me to the hospital. She said, “No. I will NOT let you do this to yourself again. I will NOT let you cop out. We are bandaging this up and you are going to be strong.” At first I fought it, I protested, I cried, I screamed – I threw a tantrum like a three year old. Don’t make me live! I’m scared! God, don’t make me do this!

After a long night of crying, and a visit to my therapist in the morning (which I only got through thanks to my the nifty little defense mechanism called disassociation)… I realized that I did NOT have two choices.

I had ONE choice.

Death was NOT an option for me. Or rather… I could not LET it be an option.

I could not let the monster win. I had to fight it.

ONE choice: To live.

ONE choice: To love.

ONE choice: To be with Todd and thereby letting my dreams come true.

ONE choice. To let myself be happy.

So here I go. Taking that leap, that plunge, that ultimate risk called life. It is scary. It is tumultuous. It is what I was born to experience, and experience it I must. Experience it I shall.

Living at risk is jumping off the cliff and building your wings on the way down. ~Ray Bradbury

All I have is here, today, now. No more living in the past, no more living for tomorrow. Loving Todd and jumping back into life in all its uncertainties and complexities means forcing myself to live in the present, to accept myself for who I am IN THIS MOMENT. This is the hardest thing in the world, but we LEARN how to by DOING it.

It is by jumping off that cliff that we learn how to spread our wings and fly…

Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass. It’s about getting out there and dancing in the rain.

My own experience has taught me this: if you wait for the perfect moment when all is safe and assured it may never arrive. Mountains will not be climbed, races won or lasting happiness achieved. ~Maurice Chevalier

The person who risks nothing, does nothing, has nothing, is nothing, and becomes nothing. He may avoid suffering and sorrow, but he simply cannot learn and feel and change and grow and love and live. ~Leo F. Buscaglia

Life can be magnificent and overwhelming — that is the whole tragedy. Without beauty, love, or danger it would almost be easy to live. ~ Albert Camus

April 25, 2010

To Live = To Love. To Love = To Live.

Posted in recovery tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , at 11:18 pm by eddejae

Well, I promised to divulge the secret of my new-found outlook on life and the turning point that I experienced, but… I am too tired! So sorry. I will say this though…

The greater your capacity to feel pain, the greater your capacity to feel joy.

I am not cured, but I have greater hope I will be. I still feel pain, but I know it will lessen more and more each day. I still have problems, but I have greater courage to face them. I am still me, but happier and more hopeful.

To wrap it all up with a cute little bow…

I’m in love.

Whew. Glad I got that one out!

Now, before you roll your eyes and get all cynical on me, I ask you to please refrain from any sort of jaded mental jaunting (don’t act so surprised – I can hear your thoughts quite loudly!) until you hear the story in its entirety and how this relationship factors into my recovery process. Suffice it to say that I had two choices:

One. To die.

Or two. To live.

I chose to live.

And I chose to love.

Life.

And love.

These are inseparable in my eyes.

I’m off to bed soon. I am posting this song as it expresses almost perfectly – in word, in rhythm, in melody – what I feel right now. Seriously… what would I do without music??

Goodnight
To the city and the sea
To the strangers in the street
Goodnight
To the ghosts out in the hall
The paint peeling off the walls
Goodnight

Sometimes I
Stand between the sidewalk and the sky
And just stare into the clouds as they pass by
You have to leave the ground to learn to fly

Goodnight
To the TV and the clocks
To the rain that never stops
Goodnight
To everyone I know
Shut my eyes and let em go
Goodnight

Sometimes I
Stand between the sidewalk and the sky
And just stare into the clouds as they pass by
You have to leave the ground to learn to fly

There is something beautiful dying every day
And for the first time in my life I’m not afraid
Cause there is nothing in this world that doesn’t change

Goodnight
To the person I have been
To the place that I am in
Goodnight
Tomorrow hello to the sun
Are you ready here I come
Goodnight

Sometimes I
Stand between the sidewalk and the sky
And just stare into the clouds as they pass by
You have to leave the ground to learn to fly

April 24, 2010

Taking the Leap

Posted in recovery tagged , , , , , , at 11:31 am by eddejae

So much has happened the last few days, I don’t know if I can even write about it right now. A major life change has taken place, and I’m still reeling from the shock of it. I will write more about it tomorrow, as I don’t have much time to blog today. So I will just post this beautiful video, as the song and dance expresses just a part of how I’m feeling right now about a certain somebody…

The person who risks nothing, does nothing, has nothing, is nothing, and becomes nothing. He may avoid suffering and sorrow, but he simply cannot learn and feel and change and grow and love and live. ~Leo F. Buscaglia

April 23, 2010

February Song

Posted in recovery tagged , , , at 5:55 pm by eddejae

Dedicated to my best friend in the whole world…

I love you.

Where has that old friend gone
Lost in a February song
Tell him it won’t be long
Til he opens his eyes, opens his eyes
Where is that simple day
Before colors broke into shades
And how did I ever fade
Into this life, into this life

And I never want to let you down
Forgive me if I slip away
When all that I’ve known is lost and found
I promise you I, I’ll come back to you one day

Morning is waking up
And sometimes it’s more than just enough
When all that you need to love
Is in front of your eyes
It’s in front of your eyes

And I never want to let you down
Forgive me if I slip away
Sometimes it’s hard to find the ground
Cause I keep on falling as I try to get away
From this crazy world

And I never want to let you down
Forgive me if I slip away
When all that I’ve known is lost and found
I promise you I, I’ll come back to you one day

Where has that old friend gone
Lost in a February song
Tell him it won’t be long
Til he opens his eyes
Opens his eyes

April 22, 2010

Red Rain

Posted in recovery tagged , , , , , , , , , , , at 4:39 pm by eddejae

WARNING: This poem may be triggering to some. I had a breakdown a couple of nights ago, and I felt the need to write about it.

The jagged scars of my disquieted mind,

Jolted from the asphyxia of apathy,

Begin to bleed.

The despair-born disease leaks

Into my thirsty, eager veins,

Searing a pathway into the

Tenderness of my heart.

The burning pressure builds,

The pulsing heat unrelenting,

I ache to release it,

To cut through my flesh

And mingle blood with air,

Running down, cooling my fevered skin.

Move. Move. Itching urge to move.

Run. Run. Forever blindly running.

Drive. Drive. Driving through the

Cascades of cleansing rain –

Streetlight shadow procession –

Mocking my desperate striving

At deliverance.

Faster. Faster. Never to outrun

The demons that jeer and scold.

I cannot cry.

Something stops me.

I scream for relief

That will not come.

I pray for tears

That will not flow.

My feelings buried in the depths,

Ambushed by fear,

Trapped inside an

Impenetrable wall.

So instead I cry

Rose red tears

On the unforgiving pavement.

Streetlights flicker and cease to shine.

I am alone in my numbness.

Me.

And the rain.

And the proof

My heart still beats.

Unboring

Posted in recovery tagged , , , at 3:27 pm by eddejae

I can never read all the books I want;

I can never be all the people I want and live all the lives I want.

I can never train myself in all the skills I want.

And why do I want?

I want to live and feel all the shades, tones and variations of mental and physical experience possible in life.

~Sylvia Plath


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