Two days late, but here I am. My planner said I had a writing appointment here for Monday. But, once again, as it has it has over and over, procrastination due to fear of failure and the inability of read worthy writings, had me skipping that arrangement. I’m proud to say I showed up here today without any decided subject matter to discuss. Something often used as an excuse not to show up. I have to confess, I caught myself opening up my last blog post to see if there was anything there that would spur on thoughts and ideas to write about. I quickly rerouted my brain to, “you are not there anymore. You are in a new place today. Write about that.”
This week I feel stronger. Not fixed, or have any nuances of mental or physical struggles removed, just stronger. It’s as if I am a toy car that takes 12 AA batteries to run, and although they are all dead, someone has kindly replaced one. That stored energy is there awaiting for the others to be replaced, but there is no way the full potential of movement, nor all my other fancy bells and whistles, be enjoyed. at least, not yet. There is something I don’t have that a toy car doesn’t. The mental capacity to understand that I am one battery closer to full operating capacity. I have potential energy. I have potential.
So far this week, I have done three continuous days of yoga. This may or not be due to a that before each yoga session, I spend some time using a heating pad to warm up the most problematic areas in terms of pain. These tend to be my hips, upper back between my shoulder blades, especially the left side that I injured, and my chest area near and below the clavicle, and my shoulders. I continue to use the 30 Days of Weight Loss videos that I mentioned in my last post, and am currently on Day 10. I am often finding the need to have more forgiving self talk, because, after each yoga session, I believe I should be able to do more that just 30 minutes. I often took 45 minute and hour long yoga classes, so the reminder that I have to stay with in my body’s current ability is essential. To move beyond the edge of my where my body is today, may ultimately decrease where that edge will be in the future if I don’t listen intently to its needs. It’s amazing how much current negative thoughts can set the probability of future self sabotaging thoughts. Without my ability for acceptance of where my body is today, I may never move beyond its current capability. That merely sets me up for possible physical issues going forward and, therefore, perpetuating negative self talk. I’m learning to tweak those thoughts in order to avoid self sabotage of my goals.
It’s amazing the things we have to relearn. Especially those we once thought we had mastered. Growing up, I didn’t let the opinions of others deter me from who I thought I was and what I wanted. Of course, there are times we must find different paths to our ultimate goals, but I was good at seeing ways around obstacles. Even if those obstacles could take the form of someone else’s opinion of me.
Point in case, when I was younger, I always thought I seen as a “bad kid”. If my mom felt we were especially “bad” on a given week, we were told we had to attend confession on Saturday morning. This mostly occured in my preteen and teen years. However, I never saw myself as what I thought she saw. I mean, yes, I did typical kid things like fighting with my siblings. To me, being sent to confession, was like being sent to the police station to admit to a crime. I didn’t see myself at all as overstepping or breaking a rule. Arguments with sibling were usually for some rational reason. I didn’t speak up against my parents opinions or rules, unless I felt they were not valid or their judgement of something that I was said to have done or said was out of context. I wasn’t “all that bad.” I merely wanted my opinions and needs to be respected, and felt I was deserving of that. I felt all persons are deserving of that. So, I didn’t allow others opinions of me dictate my opinion of me. But something has shifted me away from it.
Namely, it was my diagnosis of fibromyalgia. The symptoms and the affects of fibromyalgia became the means for my unhealthy transference. Fibro makes me angry. It has taken things from me. It has diminished what I had hoped my future would hold. I look back to the freedom I felt in my previous body, my fibro free body, and I want it back. I want to wake up feeling unencumbered from pain and the mental anguish that will keep me from accomplishing and enjoying everyday choices and chances. It has left me making choices time after time of what part of my life I delete in order to eek out those things I truly must do or desire. This week I am focusing only on needed exercise and decreasing all other physically taxing errands or situations, in order to spend time with my grandsons this weekend. I rest days on end, to have energy for a day or two. I give and give to fibro, and it keeps taking.
So, who or where do I redirect these emotions and feelings to? Anyone who takes from me. Anyone who reminds me of what I was and how I used to be. I don’t need these reminders. I know I cannot be counted on showing up if I am asked to participate in something. And if I do show up, I might not appear to fully be there mentally. I cannot be counted on if you need my help in a physical activity. I will try my best, but it is hard for me to be “on time”, especially in the morning, because my body fails me often. Yes, I “used to” be able to do all those things and I feel like a burden and useless because of my inability to do so now. Fibromyalgia is obstinate, controlling, selfish, relentlessly cruel, and hurts me to the core. So, when someone shows or tell me I am no longer the person I once was, in those moments I despise them as much as I do my archenemy, Fibro. They are tearing down any minuscule of self acceptance, self esteem, and self love I have left.
I find it strange that at the ages of 16, and 26 and 36, it was easier for me to deflect any outside influence to alter how I viewed myself. But, here I am, nearly 56, and I have allowed other’s choices in how they interact within my life, to knock me off my feet. I try to come out of this with an understanding that they truly don’t understand the scope of what I am dealing with, and how they may not see the depth their words and actions might dig into a raw part of my already deepened and embedded self hate. I know I must work on this. I must work to forgive myself for believing the hurt they inflicted was due to me not “being enough”. I’m still unsure how to explain the depth of personal loss I feel daily , so that others don’t feel the brunt of that transference. Or that I have to, once again, feel the pain and disappointment and immediately fall into a self protection mode. That mode of protection brings out a very angry, introverted person who falls further into self loathing.
I know this voice has to be silenced. I know I have been spinning in this circle for about 8 years now, and I am the only one who can pull herself out. The words of others, the actions of others, and the opinions of others is not going to bring me out of this painful despair and feeling of inadequacy. I have to believe in myself. If I cannot physically and mentally give what they are in need of, it cannot fully be my responsibility. Let them look elsewhere if they cannot accept where I am. If they must give up on me, because I am not enough, then so be it. Perhaps if I put it out there in a letter:
So, dear person/s who see me as “not enough” or “giving enough”,
I have to come back to being enough for me. I cannot give another inch of myself until I do. At least not without resentment. I am not selfish. I am not ignoring your needs. I am not lazy. I am trying to survive what fibromyalgia inflicts upon me. Please do not inflict more. I smile when I am in pain. I already show up, even when I truly don’t have the capacity to do so. You don’t have to remind me I am not who you thought I was. I am not who I thought I was becoming. Nor who I wanted to be. I am learning to adjust to that and accept it. I am not blind to seeing you expect more and that I continue to disappoint. I know my limits, and sometimes your are pushing beyond them. I have to stop when it is too much for me. I have to love myself enough to do this. On my terms. In my time.
Please be patient.
Please be accepting.
Please don’t expect me to live up to your expectations.
If you cannot. Please, move on.