Friday, November 15, 2013

She closed the door

I wrote about a particularly bad panic attack I had while at the acupuncture doctors office 4 weeks ago.  Post is here.  I went back last night for the first time and had a fair amount of anxiety going into the office.  I was also openly hostile.  This was not a conscious choice but rather something beyond my control.  I was closed off and simply full of rage.

There is a substance called Moxa that they have started using in the office and it really affects me for some reason.  There is the smell of it which I find offensive.  That is one thing.  But it was building into something more as every time I complained about the smell, I was greeted with kindof vacant "smile and nod" and dismissive statements about how it's so beneficial.  In other words "quit your bitching and accept it."  Talk about your triggering feelings for a survivor!!  It all came to a head when the doctor offered to put the Moxa oil on me during treatment and I flipped out and said no, how I find so offense.  To quote my prior post "The Dr replied in a very dismissive tone like "Ok, then.  We'll see you in a bit" and closed the door, making a hasty exit."  From there, I spiraled downward into the worst panic attack I've had in years, unable to breathe, paralyzed to communicate other than hysterical, hyperventilating sobbing. 

I didn't put that significance together until last night.  I was thinking through the incident and my reaction and then it hit me.  He closed the door and walked out while dismissing my statements.

On more than one occasion, my mother walked in while my brother was sexually abusing me.  Unable/unwilling to deal with it.....she turned around, walked out and closed the door behind her.  Dismissing the whole thing. 

I felt like I had been punched in the gut while I was sitting there and made that connection. 

Last night the Dr. used a fantastic treatment called NAET on me.  He treated me for my sensitivity to the Moxa and also treated me for anger, rage and cellular memories.  I felt so much more calm and open by the time we left.  It's really an amazing, miraculous tool that I HIGHLY recommend if you can find a practioner who is licensed in it. 

I recognize that I have so many mother issues left over.  I have been very angry with her lately.  I notice when we talk, I can barely look her in the eyes.  I place a room's distance between us and stand with my arms & feet crossed. I wrote the following a couple weeks ago and have had it saved in draft because it didn't seem like a complete idea but it's relevant here. 

I was thinking more about B's focus issues. I made some calls yesterday and have a lot of work to do, a lot of avenues to explore.  I go back to that feeling that I don't want to just cave to what is "easy".....I want to do right by her. And I realize the reason I feel SO incredibly strong about that statement is because, when my mother had to deal with my abuse and my cutting and all the problems that resulted from the abuse, she shoved me off to a psychiatrist who I never spoke to, swept it under the rug and that was pretty much it.  Oh except for the part where she fed me.....and taught me to eat my feelings.  That's helpful....your brother raped you?  Here, have some cookies.  She did the easy. Not what was right. I will not do the same to my daughter.

I simply do not know how to work with these feelings going forward.  And it's the holidays no less...... good times. 

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Not Fair

I mentioned that I have started the process of addressing B's issues.  I have not shared these issues with her father.  He doesn't know her, has never met her.  We spent large chunks of her life not speaking at all but have reconnected in the past few months with the sole purpose (at least MY sole purpose....his motives are still questionable) being the exploration of a relationship between the two of them. 

I give him happy photos and updates and I really don't share the struggles with him.  I don't feel like it's really warranted.  I mean, after all, he is not my co-parent here.  While it's tempting to reach out to him looking for advice when I feel so very isolated in these circumstances, he can't make an informed decision about B's needs.  I've been on the verge of sharing her challenges with him many times but I don't because it's an emotional issue for me and it's tied into everything else I feel....all my own father issues, my anger at him for not being here.  I've not been able to separate it enough that I felt I could have a conversation with him that would not turn ugly. 

There is also the fact that I wanted him to know her first before hearing all this.  I don't want him perceiving her as a "problem child" but rather to see who she is and all the things that make her so uniquely special.  I want him to see that these issues are not all she is but rather how they fit into who she is as a whole. 

But the other morning, before B and I headed out to her initial evaluation with the pediatrician, I reached  out to him.  I gave him a brief overview of what we are working with here and he said "I wanted and want to know all sides of her.....I don't think it fair for you to try and decide what I should and shouldn't know."

Every part of me froze and screamed inside.............ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME????????????

Since when is fairness to YOU my priority??  You want to talk about what is NOT FAIR?????  How about a little girl who has grown up without a father because you lied to me about who you were and what you wanted and then never made an effort to get in her life?  You think I am worried about what is fair to YOU??  Think again. 

But.....I walked away from the phone.  I realized that that response would not get me any closer to my goal for B.  So I waited til I calmed down and I said "A, there are a GREAT number of things about this situation that are quite unfair to ALL who are involved. I am not keeping things from you.  I want you to get to know her personally and incrementally."

He came back and said "I just don't like feeling in the dark."

(Ding Ding.....thank you for that smooth segue.....) I replied "I know that 'in the dark' is an uncomfortable feeling.  The thing is that I'm trying to engage you to know her, far more than a bunch of texts could ever convey and I have no idea where your head is about it.  We had plans to meet, you cancelled and you've not said one word about rescheduling."

No reply.  That was 24 hours ago.  In my summary of what issues she is facing, I mentioned that she has some definite fear and abandonment issues that are tied into him.  He had no indignant retort to that either.  Honestly, some days I wonder if this is really the wisest course.  He can be such a d-bag.  How did he manage to make this about him??  Is he that selfish??  The problem is that no matter which way we slice it here, she gets the shaft.  If he's not around, she will wish he was.  If he is around, she will either wish he was here more or will wish he was a better guy.  Likely both.  I can't win for her.  And from minute to minute, I have no idea if I am doing the right thing by her.  I am utterly drained. 

Saturday, November 9, 2013

I crave him.

I do.  I find myself craving contact with B's father and I have to ask is this tied into my own father issues?  Because I'm pretty sure that it is.  It has to be, right?  I can't see any other reason for this intense desire to be in contact with him constantly. 

We had an exhange yesterday that was a little questionable.  He made a suggestive comment and I, inadvertently, sortof agreed with him.  I know that sounds dubious, right?  Here is what happened though.  I don't know if I am the only one who does this but, when I am not sure what I want to say in a text, I start typing whatever comes to mind and then I erase, modify, retype, etc,.... I have an iPhone and when I want to erase something, I can just shake the phone to "Undo Typing."  I decided I didn't like what I'd written which was in agreement with his statement so I shook my phone and, in the process of doing so, I must have hit the Send with my finger.  GAH!

In any case, I had agreed but finished the sentence with a "but..." and so I just left it at that.  Anything else I may have tried to say would have looked too much like I was trying to dig myself out of a hole.  I figured the "but" expressed doubt in the statement and, uncomfortably left it alone.  He wrote something a while later that gave me the perfect segue to recover and refocus us on B.

Still, every day with him is just so hard.  I tell him the positive things in B's life which paints a picture that she is fine without him.  I don't want him believing that.  But every time I try to tell him about the struggles it's all wound up together with my anger and my fears and my whole history.  I don't know how to separate the whole mess.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013


Man, I have had really horrid anxiety these past few days.  Worse than in a long time, necessitating the use of Xanax over the weekend.  And now I think I understand why.  Everything in my mom-gut says this ADD route is wrong.  But I recognize that I personally have strong theoretical opposition to it and I don't want that to stop me from getting B the help she needs, *IF* this is what she does need.  So I made that appointment and all hell in my brain broke loose immediately thereafter.  All that anxiety was caused by my making the ADD evaluation appointment.  It's so subjective.  I don't do "subjective".....I want black and white.  I want to look at an irrefutable test result that says "yes, this is the issue."  I don't want to circle a bunch of numbers on a 1-6 scale about behaviors that every kid exibits from time to time and have someone drug my baby as a result.  It's just so........damn unscientific!! 

I'm still going to do the evaluation as due diligence and to see what other avenues they may have to offer me.  B's teacher said to me this morning, as a teacher and as "mom to mom," these are not the academic results she sees with ADD kids.  The observations she made supported my desire to have B tested for CAPD.  I'm going to make that call later today.  She was also able to give me some insight into circumstances in the classroom that could be contributing to B's increased struggle this year.  And she gave me a couple great therapy resources.  I've thought many times about getting B into therapy.  She is pretty buttoned up with me at times.  I'm not sure how to interpret that.  She is a people pleaser so I don't know if she doesn't want to share her struggles with me because she doesn't want to upset me.  Or maybe she picks up on the fact that I am very buttoned up with my problems and does likewise.  In my words, I tell her can talk to me about anything, this is a safe place to share your fears and feelings, etc.  But by my behavior, I present totally opposite.  Or maybe, as a 9 year old, she simply doesn't know how to make sense of the things she feels.  Her teacher gave me the name of the therapist she uses for her own daughter (her daughter is a survivor of a school shooting massacre) and also told me about another therapist who does art therapy.  I think that may be a great suggestion for B who is creative by nature and gets umcomfortable with the direct "how does that make you feel?" type of conversations.  Since she is interested in telling people what they want to hear, she may do better talking and expressing while distracted by creating. 

So I have some avenues to try.  And also my BFF shared some of her Valium with me.  So I'm hooked up on every angle.  A better day. 

Monday, November 4, 2013

Six years

Six years.  That is how long one prescription of Xanax has lasted me.  I still have a few rolling around in the bottle.  Good to know they still work.  But sad to report I had to test their effectiveness this weekend.  Was this an ironic lesson?

My last post about my feelings on how to deal with B's focus issues mentioned how I am so steadfastly opposed to medication.  I am a naturopathic girl, all the way.  Yet the panic and anxiety attacks I suffered this weekend were some of the worst I have ever had.  After two nights of living hell, I caved to a Xanax last night and enjoyed a peaceful nights sleep.  Even though I had to live with the Xanax "hangover" this, it was a good excuse to stop at Starbucks. 

So, maybe sometimes, despite my beliefs and good intentions.....drugs can be a solution. 

.................................Nah, I still hate myself for even thinking about it.

I still feel I am suffering from depression but I just refuse to go the anti-depressant route again.  I did not like how they made me feel.  I felt so numb.  And coming off them was a stone cold nightmare.  Unless I am in danger of throwing myself off a cliff, I will get through this without.  I'd like to return to acupuncture but I'm still waiting to hear back from the Dr after my freak-out a couple weeks ago.  I asked them to remove the offending substance from their office on the days I am there.  They were not sure how to answer me on that.  I have to think about how I will handle this if they come back unwilling to do so.  Spiteful me wants to say that I'm done going there and ask for a refund of all the treatment plan money I have pre-paid.  But I really have to think about what is best.  B has benefitted greatly from her treatments there and so have I.  There are not really many other options for me to change practices.  I dunno.  I got nothin.

Friday, November 1, 2013


I think I might be depressed.  I feel like I'm in a hole every day at one point or another.  I have regular thoughts of hating my life and wondering what the hell the purpose of it all is.  I'm not suicidal or anything.  I just feel kinda.....lost.  Or maybe just alone. I think it's more than I can ponder at this moment without completely falling apart.  As much as I really probably need that emotional release, there is never a convenient time to lose it.  KWIM?  Life must go on.

B's school struggles and focus issues have been heavy on my mind.  A recent conversation challenged my course of action and it was exceedingly uncomfortable for me.  I mean, I know that I don't take (perceived) criticism or even advice well at all.  But I had to consider why I felt so overwhelmingly threatened when I know the statements were well intended.

Here is the thing......I don't even really believe in ADD.  I'm not looking to open a debate about it.  I understand many people deal with it and everyone chooses their own course with the intent to do right by their child.  That is wonderful.  My own personal feeling is that it is very real symptoms caused by a variety of sources but it is not inherent to the sufferer.  I've read enough information and case studies that I feel comfortable in my belief. That's just me and that is all I need to worry about right now.

Despite that, I am *considering* having B evaluated for "ADD" and going another route to help her.  Here is the problem in that...... while medication may help alleviate her symptoms, I feel it is the worst, most horrible, harmful cop out I could ever consider.  I am vehemently opposed to drugs and to big pharmaceuticals in general.  I KNOW that I could improve her symptoms with a combination of diet, naturopathic therapies &/or herbal supplements and behavioral therapy.  Unfortunately, unless I win the lottery and can quit my job, I do not have the time and the resources to do so.  And that makes me feel like a total failure.  I absolutely feel like I have given up on her, am throwing up my hands and just caving to the easy instead of doing what I believe is right.  And I hate myself every second for it.  Yes, even if it works.  

B's father reached out to me this morning.  God, what bad timing.  I want to spill my guts to him and ask for his input.  I want to ask him to step up.  I want to tell him that she needs him, *I* need him.  Blah.  I want to tell him that she was upset yesterday.  Her karate instructor asked for help after classes on Saturday with taping the floor mats.  He said the moms cut the tape, the kids run it to the dads and the dads do the taping.  B thought we would not be allowed to help because she doesn't have a dad.  It's the little stuff like that that comes out of nowhere and reminds you all the small ways she feels that absence.  I wish I had someone in this with me who could be a sounding board, another set of eyes, another valued opinion of where we should go next in this journey.