Hope

Back to normal tonight, which feels so good! I’ve had a nice weekend. Yesterday I saw two movies with S; Almovodar’s “Pain and Glory” and “Jo Jo Rabbit”. Both, excellent. Trying to see as many Oscar contenders as we can in the lead up to it. And today we picked up my scooter / motorbike from M (he left it out for me). He’d taken off the viser from my helmet and my eyes weren’t used to the speed of the wind on the freeway. I had sunglasses on which helps, but as I rode back my vision got extremely blurred and I genuinely couldn’t see. It was really scary and I just started praying and trying to breathe through the intense fear I was experiencing. It was really full on and I almost pulled over on the side of the freeway because I was so scared. But I thought I would just have to get back on it so I might as well keep going. I tried to be aware and stay present of the feeling of fear and what it was doing to my body. Eventually I got to an 80km zone and at that speed my vision returned to normal and I was okay but shaken up. I calmed down when I got home and I didn’t dissociate, which was impressive. I went for a 2.5 hour run, begrudgingly, and that feeling didn’t go away the whole time. This marathon training is doing my head in. It’s so intense. I can’t see myself doing it in the time I have set but I still have a few more weeks of training so we will see. It’s hard work on my body and mind.

I said to S tonight that my favourite thing in the world is when I am back “normal” (and all I mean by that is connected to myself) and I feel connected to her and loving and kind and together. It’s nice to just feel it and be grateful for these moments, considering how depressed and suicidal I have been feeling. It passes.

Researching feelings vs emotions

My unconscious understanding of feelings from a parts point of view is that feelings are scary, forbidden, best kept secret. You get hurt if you feel so best not to feel. Feeling may mean death, terror, pain.

Neuroscience says it is our emotions that trigger feelings.

“feelings are the conscious experience of emotional reactions. Originating in the neocortical regions of the brain, feelings are sparked by emotions and shaped by personal experiences, beliefs, memories, and thoughts linked to that particular emotion. Strictly speaking, a feeling is the side product of your brain perceiving an emotion and assigning a certain meaning to it [7].”

Source

Emotions: are not conscious, they manifest in the subconscious mind.

According to Psychology Today, traumatic experiences impact our emotions, causing PTSD flashbacks, nightmares and increased fear, anxiety, anger, sadness and guilt. And for me dissociation, which results in an inability to stay with these emotions for any great period of time as I disconnect with my self.

My emotions are generally sadness, guilt, shame, self hate, self loathing (disgust) and anxiety and fear.

What do I think about joy? Joy is when my heart and mind connects and sings. It is energetic flow and peacefulness. It is contentment without fear or worry. It is feeling gratitude and calm. Joy is safe. I have experienced joy before. It is good. Joy is empowering. Happiness can result from joy and a sense of peacefulness and gratefulness.

It is safe to feel. It is normal and healthy and feelings pass, fade, morph and transcend.

Therapy session

Therapy on Thursday. I crumbled. Since getting back from overseas I’ve been very depressed and lots of negative thinking, shame and self loathing. I think listening to this podcast and also practicing positive thinking meditation is bringing up a lot of stuff. It’s shining a light on the amnesic parts in me who don’t believe any of the positive stuff. They are in such deep self loathing, it’s hard for them to accept another truth. My therapist (T) said often when we go away and our parts are left behind (remember I was kind of “on show” for about ten days- acting professionally and as together as I could), that when we come back, our parts can get pissed off and make us pay for it. It definitely feels as though that’s the case. I’m very dissociative, almost daily, and as I said, lots of negative self talk, self loathing and feeling out of sorts. T suggested I lie down on her mattress couch which has lots of toys on it and pillows and check in with my body/ my parts and see who wants to talk/ see what’s happening. A part came up who said they were suicidal and wanted to die. And man I felt it. Just deep despair. The part just wanted T to hear her pain, and to be believed in how disgusting and ugly and bad she felt, how utterly worthless. You can put whatever icing you want on it, but this is her reality. T just listened and empathised and didn’t judge her, which was good. I’m not meaning to minimise this parts reality by practicing positive thinking, I am just trying to help create a new reality for the system. I can’t really remember what else happened other than T encouraging the part to give voice or movement to the pain and that was so hard to entertain but I really tried and just breathed out loud and moved a bit and the movement turned into shaking and shivering and body memory pain. And the memory of being covered in blood and just being so disgusting and feeling so gross. It’s sad to write about it now. The sadness is so deep. The part was suspicious of T and asked her if she enjoyed seeing her in pain. T said no, she’s not an abuser and doesn’t think like that. After the shaking stopped and I came back to “normal”, T was really happy: “you did such good work” she said. It’s funny she gets happy when I have memory – I guess she sees it as progress. There’s no clear narrative. I wish I had narrative. Make more sense of it all.

I felt pretty out of it for the rest of the day, so tired and today too. Last night I dreamt I was having two weddings, one where I was getting married to my brother and the other to M, my ex husband and I dreamt of snakes and a large snake in particular that was swallowing a banana, which has very obvious sexual connotations.

I’m scared. I’m scared I won’t get through this. I know I will but sometimes it feels overwhelming and like I should check in to a respite centre immediately. I worry because of my suicidal ideation I am going to will myself to die. I worry because of my negative thoughts that I will cause only bad things to happen to me.

When life is hard I worry a lot and feel detached from reality. I am grateful I still do things, like I went for a long run today and got a few tasks done. I really just wanted to stay in bed all day but I didn’t. And I went to the movies tonight and saw “Bombshell” – excellent and worrying. Sexual harassment, misogyny, racism, power and privilege- no wonder my parts can’t see the point in living. It’s all a mother trucking problem and seems very overwhelming. But I am a fighter. I won’t give up as much as I feel like I want to.

Multiples

Went to a D.I.D / multiple support group tonight – there were 13 of us… go figure. I’m feeling a bit weirded out by it all. I introduced myself but then didn’t say much. It was a little unstructured for me and also first meeting so I was just getting a sense of space and people. There was no topic and so someone just asked how you find a good therapist and then lots of people piped in about that. It’s a hard question and subjective. I don’t know I find I can get bit judgemental and also my teen parts come out/ part curious, part bored by the conversation and wanting to talk about something more meaningful. That conversation lasted almost an hour I think…. people also talked about communicating with their parts. Some people write on whiteboards. That makes me feel like I am in school.

Then the last half hour was just casual chatting and I had brought my dog with me so I went and got her water. Anyway this super shy woman came up and asked me about being high functioning and how you become like that (I’d said I was in the intro) and so we just chatted for about half hour and it was cool and I felt like I belonged then. Turns out she is Christian too and she has five different roles in her work and I’m just laughing because to me that is super high functioning too, but funny that she doesn’t think it is. And I found out she went to therapy sessions too and just fell asleep! We laughed. It made me feel not so alone.

S keeps telling me she loves me, like heaps of times every day and I am learning that it makes her feel better when I say it in return but it feels like too much for me. Or is that me being silly? Sometimes I just switch and I don’t want to say it and I clam up but that makes her feel bad so I now just say it but there is no feeling attached to it. I like to say it when there is feeling but at the moment I am just so dissociated that it is hard to stay connected. Also my parts still don’t believe her and think she will tire of me and them and also that we are just too old for her. I feel young but can see I am getting older. I hate being a mum age. It just feels weird. I’m so glad I am not a mum, no offence to any mums reading this.

There were three support friends/ partners there tonight. I like seeing that. How can someone care so much about a person? S is like that with me I guess but yet I just don’t believe she won’t change her mind about loving me. I wonder why I feel that way. Why can’t I accept her love?

– because love is gross and full of shit (a part)

– hello. Why do you think that?

– cos it is and I don’t want a bar of it.

– it makes me sad you feel that way. Could you tell me more? What don’t you like about it?

– its a construct designed to keep you down and make you weak so you do what other people want. It is gonna bite you and piss all over you and cover you in shit and laugh at you. It makes you dizzy and weak and tired and a stupid puppet.

– wow. Thanks for sharing. No wonder you feel that way about love. You have been hurt badly in the name of love and that’s not fair.

– life’s not fucking fair. You just get on with it.

– that’s true I guess. But rather than just getting on with it, why can’t we change it? Not just accept it without critically thinking about it?

– blank blank blank blank

A conversation with my parts.

I am working very very hard to be positive, think positive and imagine good things. I do believe that our thoughts influence our way of being and I do believe that God desires good things for us. I am trying not to get caught up in the ‘how’ of things, ie. how what I want to manifest will work, but it is hard. I am also trying to avoid the negative thoughts telling me that I am a failure etc etc. I am working to reframe these thoughts, to deny them, to remind my parts that these are the lies of the programmers, but I am dissociating badly as the practice is harder than the theory. Many, many years ago, I thought I could ‘think’ my way to happiness and to prosperity. This was when things came crumbling down for me, because I started to listen to my actual thoughts and they were so negative and dark and disempowering. It was overwhelming. I stopped doing this when I got into recovery, rather just concentrated on taking step by step action to not pick up a drink or a drug and to develop a more rounded way of being. That has worked for me, but as I desire to do more, be more and achieve more (in a healthy way), it is necessitating the need for me to focus on changing my mindset. Hence where the problem lies as this is bringing up overwhelming negative thoughts lurking in my subconscious. Everything from I am ugly, too disgusting, to I am a failure, I can’t/ won’t achieve, I fuck everything up, I would be better off dead. And it hurts, because I am really trying so hard, so very very hard and its like I am a rat on a wheel, going around and around and I can’t get off. Breathe. God loves you, you are good, this is hard, it is hard to change a mindset that was programmed to feel as though you shouldn’t be alive and were a disgusting, vile piece of shit. I am sorry it is so hard. Breathe. You can get through this. These fears and thoughts are not you. God thinks you are amazing and beautiful and creative and wonderful. The darkness wants to keep you oppressed and afraid and in a victim state, because if you achieve all that you can and desire then the darkness has no place and it has lost. So keep focused on who God believes you to be.

But how do you know that? How do you know that He believes that of me? I don’t believe He believes that.

Because it is known. It is the great Truth. Whether or not you believe it is irrelevant to God. It doesn’t change what God thinks or knows to be true. He is LOVE, love gives and grants and desires. All you have to do is accept that.

Why can’t I accept it?

You can. It is just hard. It might mean expressing emotion and feeling pain, which you can do by the way, because you have done it before and it is okay, it passes. Yes it hurts, because the body is going into a physiological response that makes you instinctively freeze and separate from self. That is a trained response. You can overcome that. I am here.

This hurts. this fucking hurts so much, I want it to stop. I don’t want to be seen.

I know, I know, you have been hurt my darling, that makes sense. It is okay to be seen, to be cared for.

You will hurt me like they did.

No, no I will not. I care for you.

I am bleeding.

I know, let me clean you.

I am so so so dirty and gross.

Let me clean you.

My body is crumbling.

Fall into me. I have you. It is safe for me to hug you. You are loved.

The practice of knowing and wanting.

Heading back home and I can’t wait. It’s been a blast being away but I notice I am hyper tense and aware of my self in rather self conscious ways. It was difficult to have any alone time. I tried my best to keep up my training schedule, which I was close to achieving. I remained vegetarian, I didn’t drink alcohol, but I had many late nights and ended up taking some marijuana jellies and got stoned. I found the high pretty fun and light and didn’t zone me out too much. I felt pretty in control, although I was definitely out of it and it’s been about eight years or so since I’ve had dope. It’s legal in California, which it ain’t in Australia. I’m embarrassed to admit I did this for fear of judgement from any readers, but it seems weird to hold this information in. It definitely messed with my head at times and I quite liked taking the jellies without telling anyone and just playing “normal”. I used to do that a lot with drugs, it felt like a game, so it was interesting I started doing this almost immediately. The truth is right now I feel very vulnerable and a bit all over the shop. It’s been a thrilling experience but I have been battling my inner demons again… not feeling worthy, out of my depth and a bit like a fraud. I did genuinely have a great time, I just think these negative thoughts and feelings have been simmering underneath my every day. And I want to crash into S’ arms and just be held. All week I’ve been listening to Freedom Ministries podcast, which focuses on the belief that once we access the kingdom mind and heart set within, then anything is possible. And so I practiced imagining the success of the film and releasing the belief systems that I am not worthy, it’s all my fault and I deserve nothing. It felt good and possible but then I could feel and hear my parts activated and the disconnect between my adult willing self and my traumatised parts started to reveal itself. And my little ones felt scared and confused and I imagined holding them and telling them it was okay. We were okay. I want things to align. I need to keep practicing and entertaining the thought that anything is possible, even for someone like me.

Filmmaking Adventures part 2

The air is good here and the backdrop of the desert mountains is spectacular. I do like America, there is something very special here. It’s an interesting place.

Things went well for the screening- so well! I listened to a very good podcast in the morning, from Freedom Ministries and the speaker talked a lot about our thinking and our heart and how God desires to make all things happen for us. Its about what I dream and what I want. Knowing what I want has been the hardest thing and also being able to dream fully has been hard too, because I’ve had to cut through so many layers of not feeling worthy. I know I have come so far and this trip has proved it for me. I have chipped away at my mental health and recovery for over ten years now. The last seven years has been the most effective as I’ve done it sober and not having substances to fall back on has meant that I’ve progressed further in my journey I think. More so, because I am cleaner living and also I was being so negatively affected by the alcohol and drugs that it was necessary to stop and deal with life in a sober manner.

It’s early this year, but I am starting to cut through those beliefs that I am not worthy and not good enough and that things are my fault. That program is dying and I feel the love of God and the replacement of His thinking driving me. I am worthy. I am capable. I am making the right choices and decisions.

I dream of getting a sales agent and distribution for this film and I dream of making at least two more films, maybe more. The adventure feels like it has just started and I feel blessed to be on it.

Filmmaking adventures

I’m in Palm Springs at the film festival for the launch of our film. Red carpet premiere tomorrow. Can’t believe it. Nervous but excited and just looking forward to having the experience. I have already learnt so much and met so many amazing people. Today I went to the mountain where the aerial tramway goes to and it was covered in snow. We spent five hours walking in the snow, climbing rocks and bathing in the sun, eating sandwiches and chatting, meditating and with huge smiles on our faces looking out at the scenery. The air was so crisp and refreshing and I felt like a little kid. My little ones loved it. The snow is just the best. It is so much fun! I can see why people love the snow. I am meeting such wonderfully intelligent and rounded people.

Filmmakers, artists are terrific people, full of good stories and passion for life and challenging and bettering humanity. I am always being asked to critically think about things and the way our world operates. It’s good, it keeps me from naval gazing. I feel blessed and ready for this adventure, although I was feeling super nervous and out of my depth before I came. There’s lots to say but I’m a bit in my head at the moment, forcing myself to write and keep track of my thinking.