Friday, April 27, 2018

Spirit

My spirit is inside me, it connects me to the universe. I am part of the universe and the universe is part of me. I am made of stardust. There is a spirit in the earth. In the rocks, trees, flowers. In the stars, moon, and sun. A spirit that flows through and connects each of us to the Universe. Invisible, quiet, sometimes bold and in your face. You can't see your spirit, can't see the spirit of the universe, but it's there.

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

BDD

I have Body Dysmorphic Disorder. I had speculated for a long time, but only recently got diagnosed. What is BDD? Learn more here

Having BDD means I have a very warped view of my body at times (but not all the time). I have been trying to get better at catching myself when I'm beginning to stare at a certain part of me for too long. Having BDD doesn't mean I always hate my body, I don't. It's just when I get into the BDD headspace, those dark thoughts take over. The truth is when I started getting more attention and liked more it was because of my body. I was modeling, doing sex work. Suddenly people found me sexy and I wasn't the loser I was in middle and high school. Thus, it was cemented in my head that the best thing I have going for me is my body. Of course, I know that's not true, but again when I'm in the BDD mind frame the dark thoughts come in. So what helps and doesn't help when I am struggling with my BDD?

DO be logical. Having NVLD means I'm very fact base. For example, my friend pointed out two pics I thought I looked different in, I was actually the same. The only difference was lighting and posture. Another time she schooled me on what having a uterus means for a woman's stomach.

DON'T tell me "you look healthy." When I am in a BDD frame of mind those words can be very triggering.

DO remind me I am thin and 120 is a low weight.

DON'T tell me, "you're a beautiful person. Weight is just a number," or anything like that. It's super unhelpful.

DO message me privately (if I post in public). Sometimes it helps better if I have a one on one conversation.

DON'T say something like, "well if you're fat then what am I!" or "Wow, you're 120? wonder what you think of me being 150?" This is literally the most selfish and ignorant thing you can say. My BDD has NOTHING to do with how I see other people. Do not make it about you.

And finally, know that it will pass. Know that the road to progression isn't linear.

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Stress

I have been having a hard time lately dealing with stress. I definitely think I am having anxiety about all the big changes coming up. Living with Daniel, finding a new job, getting used to living in a new area. I'm basically uprooting myself after spending so much time trying to find stability.
I feel ashamed of myself. I want to talk about it, but every time I try to type it out I become angry and feel humiliated. I become paranoid that people will think I am getting worse, that all my progress is erased. Nothing seems to come out right, nothing is worded right. I'm also paranoid about being honest. I don't know who's watching, who will rat me out, who will betray me. Certain people have said stuff to me, stuff that's caused me to be even more paranoid and stressed.
Tonight I got overly upset and angry because I messed up putting a screen protector on, and I the shipment of postcards I ordered was messed up. Both instances ended up being an easy fix (refund and replacement), but because I was feeling stressed (and didn't help I had a stressful conversation at work) I was in an irritable and fragile headspace.
I'm trying to remind myself that this is temporary, that it doesn't mean I am "regressing" or that all my progress has been erased. I'm just having a hard time now. It's just difficult to not have blinders on and focus on the negative. Feel like everyone has me under a microscope and is judging me, or thinking I am falling apart. It doesn't help that I've been told some things by certain people, and I can't really talk about it because I'm paranoid.
I hate feeling like I have to defend myself. I hate feeling like I can't admit I'm having a hard time. Because when I do, I am making myself vulnerable and then I get paranoid about what other people will think. I get paranoid that they will think this is how I am. They will forget all the progress.
I need to stop this is just causing me to become more stressed, upset, and paranoid. I am in a thought spiral and I feeling like crying from frustration. I'm so scared and paranoid about being honest about having a hard time. I want to scream.

Shame and Change

There are parts of my personality I know I can work on. In order to do this, I need to have a sense of humility and humble myself. This is something that I have a difficult time with. Not because I'm conceited and think I am perfect, but because I have a difficult time dealing with shame. I feel deep shame in who I am, and talking about the things I am ashamed about out loud causes even further shame. I have a fear people's reactions, I fear being perceived as not making progress, and I have a tendency to focus on the "negative." One set back or "bad" trait erases all the positive and all the progress.

I also have a tendency to catastrophize. For example, I used to be super strict about how often I eat fast food. I have since become a bit more lax about it, and there have been times where I've had McDonald's or ordered out more than twice in a week. In the broader aspect, it's not like I'm eating fast food every day, but my brain focuses on that small amount of time. Having Borderline, you all know I'm very black and white. So I go from, "I'm being too strict" to "I'm a disgusting fat pig who eats like shit and I should probably kill myself." The point of this is to relay that admitting I can improve in some aspects turns into me catastrophizing.

Okay, so what do I want to work on?

  • Eating healthier: Look, I'm not into these food or diet fads. I will never be a person who counts carbs and calories. It causes me too much anxiety and confusion, and in my opinion takes too much mental effort. What I am good at is setting concrete goals. Fast food only once a month, cut back on bread carbs, continue to not drink soda and alcohol, sweets on special occasions. Eating healthier isn't what's hard for me, it's admitting I have to. Because my brain tells me that if I admit I don't always eat great then I am a failure, people are going to rub it in, I'm going to be punished and the universe is going to make me fat. And, as I've said many times before, I'd rather be dead than fat. I also have a lot of health nut friends who, in my mind, can't wait to rub their healthy lifestyle in my face. I'm sure I'm being irrational, but trying to rationalize with my brain is like trying to herd cats.
  • Being more tactful in communication: I've recently been told by a couple of people that others take issue with how I communicate. Now, ignoring the fact that a lot of people in this day and age can't handle blunt and honest communication and would rather be catty, make snide comments, talk behind people's backs, and tell everyone else they have a problem with you except you; I admit that I can sometimes be intense. I am really bad at making "I" statements, or starting with the positive. But why? I think it's important to understand why I communicate the way I do. There are a few reasons;
  1. NVLD presents a lot of Asperger's in that I don't always realize when I'm not being tactful and I struggle with social interactions. I am blunt and too the point, and I don't always read peoples reactions well.
  2. I spent 6th-12th grade being bullied, lied to, feeling like an outsider in my own home. For much of that I was abused by my step mom. I was always the one who never spoke up, kept quiet. So when I finally found my voice, you can damn well be sure I'm going to use it. 
  3. I am constantly being interrupted. By my family, friends, my boyfriend. So I've learned to be quick and to the point, and sometimes that comes out as tactless.
  4. I struggle to put my thoughts into words, and so I've found the best approach for me is not thinking about it, and just speaking.
  5. I've been abused. Emotionally, sexually, physically. I've had people walk all over me, take advantage of me, threaten me, threaten my life. Simply put, I won't keep quiet. People have a problem with strong women. Women are always softening their stances with, "I'm really sorry," and "I hope this doesn't upset you." But when a man does it? It's celebrated.
  With all this being said, I recognize that there are some people who just can't handle blunt people. So, I am going to try my best to word things carefully, maybe even write them down. The problem is, when I have to start thinking about every single word I say and wording things perfectly, I start to become anxious and paranoid.  The people who say this stuff to me, don't understand that I'm not always like this. When I am super blunt it's in these situations....

  1. I am scared to approach someone so I want to do it like a band-aid...right off and to the point.
  2. I am in a certain mood. I am frustrated, irritated, etc.
  3. I have already tried the "fluff" approach.
This causes more issues in my head. I think people see me in a certain way, I become angry, I get defensive, I feel I need to prove myself, I feel I need to scream at them that they are wrong about me. I get into "blinders" way of thinking. I only see the "negative." I then start feeling immense shame, which causes self-judgement, which causes worry, which causes anxiety, which causes shame, which causes...you get the point. 

I think, what I need to do first is start letting stuff go. People suck, people do annoying things, but I can't keep letting everything get to me. If someone wants to suck at being a decent person, that's on them. I need to stop speaking up against every tiny annoyance. I should save my breath for bigger and more important things (like human rights). That will be my goal this month, only saying something if it's directly affecting me and my life in a negative way. If I do need to communicate with someone, I will write it out first and have someone read it.

Of course, this makes me feel like a piece of shit human who can't function like a normal adult, but hey. Win some, lose some. I'll basically spend the next several days dwelling, getting angry and irritated at everything I do, and feeling like a waste of space. Because if you think you're too hard on me, remember there is no one harder on me than me. There are days I hate myself so much I want to rip myself open and climb out. I know I'm being irrational and I'm letting Beth take over. I'll let her play....for now.

Wonder

This stick I picked this week was, "wonder."

I enjoy watching my students innocent like wonder. They are curious about everything, even the simplest of thing. Things, I believe adults take for granted. This week I have been teaching my RTI group about animals from different habitats, and I have found myself learning and wondering about these animals as well.

Sometimes it's hard for me to wonder about things. Wonder=worry. I like things just so, and I like to know what's going on and what the plan is. Wondering makes me worried and anxious, but I want to let go of that. I want to come back to that childlike wonder, my students have.

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Bad Day.

Today was a bad day.

I felt frustrated dealing with the MBTA, I was reminded of a painful time during worship service, I couldn't focus during yoga, I hated my body and felt disgusting all day.

It was a bad day, but tomorrow is a new day.

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Compassion

I am late writing this, no real reason. Just never got around to doing it. The stick I picked for this week is compassion. Compassion, I believe, is something I have in abundance. I am finding though that more and more, my compassion is reserved for those who deserve it and it has its limits.

I cannot have compassion for someone who decides to shoot up a school because he was bullied. I cannot have compassion for a man who rapes and murders a woman because he's lonely in rejected. I can fight for better mental health and rehabilitation services, but my compassion for monsters has drained.

Sometimes, it's hard for me to be compassionate when I am having trouble. My spoons and energy run low, and there are times I just need to focus on myself. As I mentioned before, sometimes my compassion runs out. For example, I was trying to be compassionate toward this person who is going through a rough time physically and mentally, but she kept being super bitchy, snide, and rude to me. I'm sorry, but you don't get to treat a person like shit and expect them to take it. I would never be unkind, but I am not giving more of my energy to this person.

For this week I've been trying to be more compassionate toward myself. Not judging my judging, and letting things go.