Sadielady3's Diary

ruborcoraxxx

MyPTSD Pro
Glad it isn't a brain tumor. But indeed neurological disorders can be caused by masses of stress or interact with it. So it's foggy between psychiatry and neurology. I don't think it's anything to do with your "crazy", that might be a stamp that we put on ourselves without anyone thinking it is. Hope you can find your husband soon and have some comfort.
 

Sadielady3

MyPTSD Pro
@ruborcoraxxx Thanks for your kind words. I did find my husband- he took me to Urgent Care since I knew I shouldn't be driving. Still feeling dizzy and disoriented today. Hopefully my medical team can figure this out soon.
 

Sadielady3

MyPTSD Pro
Saw my psychiatrist yesterday. She is concerned and wants me to take more time off from work, at least next week too. I explained that I can't take off one more week without taking the rest of the year off because it will shove an inordinate amount of work into the last eight days of school. She sort of shrugged and said that she'll sign the paperwork to keep me out the rest of the school year. I'm struggling with this because I feel insanely guilty about it, even though I really shouldn't.

I see my PCP on Thursday. I'm waiting to see what he has to say about all of this before I make a choice. But I do feel strongly that I have to return on Tuesday to work or be done with this school year. The stress of only having 8 days to complete all of the year end nonsense will be really awful for me, possibly just putting me out again right at the end. What happens if I don't go back? It just simply doesn't get done. No one will die, no one else will be forced to do it, and it just goes undone with nothing that serious happening. It would be different if other people would get stuck with doing it or if it affected one of the kid's services or something. The state might give us a slap on the wrist for some missing documents but in truth, no one is traveling around looking at our folders these days with Covid going on. It's extremely unlikely that there would be anything that awful that happens.

If I'm excused from the rest of the school year, it's time to start looking for a job. In truth, I don't think I can do two more years of this. Logically, I know sticking with it and getting vested makes sense but this job is mentally destroying me. This would give me more time to find something before the start of the next school year. My husband is against me leaving teaching because of money. He's worried that we'll wind up having to live with his parents. But the truth there is that it would be temporary because I still intend to go back to school in the fall and become a therapist. Feels a little hypocritical with my mental health taking such a hit these days but I really do think that a lot of this is caused by being in a toxic work environment that I have chosen to leave. It's hard to decide that something is bad for you and to commit to two more years of it for something as ordinary as money. Money comes and goes. Also, he could get off his butt and go look for a decent paying job. He doesn't make enough money to survive on his own. It feels really shitty to me that I am expected to soldier through something that is harming me to make his life more luxurious. He's been with his job for about 15 years too and doesn't particularly love it. He's just got a great deal of job security and it's a fairly easy job. He's been telling me for five years that he wants to go back to school and finish his degree or look for another job but he's never made any effort to do either. He's never applied for a single job. He's never filled out the application to start school. My income has made it possible for him to be complacent while having enough money to live a fairly good life. Me leaving my job and possibly making less money disrupts him but I feel like it's unfair for him to put all of that on me when my job has been very harmful to my mental health for years now and it's getting worse. I need him to value me more than money and right now it feels like he doesn't.
 

Sadielady3

MyPTSD Pro
I've been going downhill throughout the week. I'm not really sure what's going on. I've been sleeping but am absolutely exhausted. I'm constantly in a fog. My doctor put me on dramamine for the dizziness. It does help some but I still have some really bad spells where I can't see straight. I was sent back to Urgent Care last night where they ruled out a heart problem since I'm now getting chest pains. Honestly, my anxiety is probably really high. I can't feel anything though, I'm so numbed out. The SI has gotten really bad now too. I don't actually think that this is a psychological condition but I do think that whatever is wrong with me is triggering mental health problems.

I see my T this afternoon. I don't want to go because I'm afraid of being committed. I did write to my psychiatrist this morning. Hopefully they can figure this out. If this is all stress related, it just reinforces my need to move on to a different job.
 

Sadielady3

MyPTSD Pro
It's been awhile since I've been on here because of my vision issues. They think I have either an inner ear inflammation or vestibular migraines. It's been well over a month of medical appointments (and I've been through a lot of specialists at this point) and they're still not quite sure. The doctors do think that my anxiety is playing a role in making things worse but it's not the main source of the dizziness. Nice to know I haven't gone full on crazy.

I got into my dream grad program and my in-laws are even willing to help pay for it. So, I'm officially going to be working towards my degree in mental health counseling in the fall. I'm really nervous and excited about that. I had planned to teach for two more years while working on my degree but the school decided that I had to work with S again in the fall teaching high level math. My schedule would be too rigorous to do grad school and continue teaching so I will be resigning now that my dizziness is improving. I've never quit a job before having another one lined up- it's not how I was raised to operate. However, I'm hoping things will work out and am taking a massive leap of faith on this one. My husband is 100% on board with it as he feels like this profession is slowly killing me and that the school majorly screwed me over regarding next year. I believe we have a relationship with our jobs and this one is so toxic and abusive that I need to walk away, even though there will be consequences like being less stable financially. I keep trying to remember that in a few years I will be able to get a decent paying job again (better pay than I currently make) and that I've really thought this all through. I just hope I'm right. I've never made a decision this big before. My mother picked out my last major and grad school for me. This is so new for me and it's scary at 40 years old to take such a big leap for the first time. However, for the first time I feel like I'm actually living instead of just getting through my life. That is a good feeling.
 

Sadielady3

MyPTSD Pro
Well, it's been a crazy week. I had my first orientation for grad school (several more sessions to come) on Wednesday and was left feeling overwhelmed and rather scared. My reaction to this? Turned around and officially quit my job. So by Wednesday night I was really losing my shit.

On Thursday, I had my T's CBT group. I was so keyed up that I felt like I'd done three lines of coke at some point that I'd forgotten I'd done. So I opted not to talk for fear I'd talk too much. The topic was handling anxiety, which was about as relevant of a topic as you can get for me at the moment so I decided to just listen. I was afraid to talk out of fear that I would say just way too much and there were new people I might scare off. My T flagged me down and we talked for a few minutes after group. He told me that I should just talk and not worry about it. I told him he might live to regret those words. He said that my feelings are normal reactions to everything going on right now- lots of big changes. I kind of knew that so I've been just trying to not let it get too out of control. He also said that the little voice of doubt that's torturing me right now is my mother's voice.

Mom has gotten it in her head, and this is no shock nor is it unexpected, that because I'm not currently working, I am available to chat on the phone with her at all times. I've probably spent at least a dozen hours on the phone with her in the last week. Mom knows that I quit my job but doesn't know about grad school or my long-term career plans. She mentioned a friend of hers on Thursday's phone call who had attempted suicide and that she was proud of him for starting counseling. I thought, "This is my chance, my opening, to test these waters." So I simply said that maybe I'd like to be a counselor and sit with people, especially teenagers, and help them with their problems. My mom very vocally launched into all of the reasons that this is a poor choice in professions: I'll never be able to leave work at work, psychology is a crack-pot field full of nonsense and mumbo jumbo, I'm not a the kind of person who has any business advising others on how to live better since I'm such a failure at life, and that I'm simply too devoid of compassion and kindness for others to do well in that line of work. I guess I had thought that maybe her views on counseling had changed based on her statement. I was very wrong.

By Friday, I was fully melting down. I struggled to get out of bed and couldn't stop crying. I recently made a new friend, someone from my therapy group who I'll call T. T spent many hours on the phone with me and then invited me over to hang out. I hadn't braved driving yet since the dizzy attacks started but she's just down the road and it was time to test those waters anyway. I also ended up talking to my BHT while I was over there. That got pretty entertaining and cheered me up a bit. My BHT said that the problem really is that mom's voice is so loud in my head right now because I'm letting her reinforce that voice with her actual voice. I need to talk to mom a lot less, if at all, for awhile. I know she's right. Yet, despite all of the EMDR and work I've done, there's still this sense of obligation or guilt or something that I can't quite escape. My BHT also assured me that as shiny and confident as the other people I've now met in my program might seem, they're all scared too. I'm not sure if that's really true but it's probably true for at least a few of them and I'm probably not alone.

But, despite the emotional turmoil I'm weathering right now, I will say one thing- I'm not at all suicidal. I'm terrified that I've made the biggest mistake of my life but also excited enough that, despite the fear I'm experiencing, I'm looking forward to seeing where things go. I'm inclined to believe that counts for something.
 

Sadielady3

MyPTSD Pro
I've been shame spiraling since Friday. I had my regular monthly therapy appointment with my T. I didn't want to go because I felt like I had nothing worth talking about. I was mostly anxious about finding a job and starting school but there's not really much to discuss there. Mom called me at 1:30. I figured I might as well talk to her because it would likely give me something to talk to my T about. Most of the conversation was amicable but she brought up the idea of me being a counselor again (as she has in every conversation since I first suggested I might enjoy that line of work). She keeps on telling me that I'm not kind or compassionate enough to do the work and that it's a terrible idea and I would be horrible at it. I told her upfront that I had a doctor's appointment at 3:45. At 3:25 I reminded her that I'd have to go soon because of my appointment. At 3:35 I told her again. She's always about that "Well, just one more thing...". At 3:41 I told her firmly that I have to go and she was still trying to keep me on the phone so I hung up on her. I needed to use the restroom and fill out the forms before therapy. As a result, I was a minute or two late to my session.

When my T popped up on the screen, he did his normal "Can you see and hear me okay?" spiel. Normally after that he asks me what I want to talk about. Not that day. He started out by telling me that he's rooting for me. I told him it would be sad if as my therapist he's not rooting for me. He went on to say that he thinks people are doing the best that they can and as a future therapist, I should believe that too. I do actually generally believe that. So I agreed with him. Then he launched into a lengthy diatribe about cutting my mom out of my life. He asked me how many hours per week I talk to her. I told him somewhere around 12 to 15 hours. He insisted it's way too much time. When I told my husband this, he says that he thinks it's closer to 20 hours and I low balled it.

He questioned why I don't cut her out of my life. I fumbled around some weak answers like inheritance and a sense of obligation. He shot down the inheritance, claiming that I may be written out of the will or that she may not have much left by the time she dies to make it worth it. He went on to say that even if she was leaving me 50 million dollars that it's not worth my peace and happiness. He said that if I can find some peace and happiness, I might be able to make it grow into something really great. No amount of money is worth giving up a happy life. He went on to say that money isn't important to me and that he doesn't think that's a real motivator in this situation.

He challenged my sense of duty and obligation as well, stating that my mother is not my responsibility. She's a narcissist who actively cuts me down and makes me feel like crap and I owe her absolutely nothing. He said that I need to learn how to be the bad guy and limit or eliminate contact with her. He said that he feels like my contact with mom is more like an addiction than anything.

He went on to tell me that he feels that I shouldn't look for a full-time job while I'm in school. He feels it would be too much for me. I don't actually disagree with him about mom but I do disagree with him about working. If I can find a job that is actually 40 hours per week, at least most of the time, then I can work full time. Teaching isn't a full-time job, it's a lifestyle. I feel nothing but relief and a sense of freedom having quit. I'm mildly concerned about money but we've got reserves and I still get paid for the month of August (since I already earned that money). However, long term I do need a full-time job or we'll have other stressors that will cause problems for me as I go through school. Personally, I'm a big fan of eating or not living at my in-laws' house. He's just plain wrong on this point.

However, on the mom topic, I know everything he said is 100% correct. The rational part of my brain knows that he had this burst of emotion (frustration, anger, concern, worry?) because I'm really starting my life over in many ways and having her shit all over me and my life is not going to help me be successful. My husband feels like my mom is doing a thousand little cuts to my heart and emotional health every time I talk to her. He would support me cutting her off if I can't set strict boundaries with her at this point. And, what happens when she does inevitably find out I'm in school to become a therapist? That's going to be an ugly horrible day. I don't owe it to her to tell her about it but at some point she's just going to know because things like this always come out. My BHT says that she is concerned about me going into that field (which I only mentioned once off-handedly) because she's terrified to face the mirror.

The irrational, traumatized part of me feels so much shame at not being better at this. I've known for a solid six months that mom is a current problem, and not just a past one. I know she's a burden and not a blessing. Yet, as my T pointed out, it's like an addiction. My husband's theory is that I've been hard wired since I was a kid to just take on her emotional problems and through all of the gas lighting and emotional abuse, I just don't have enough of a sense of self in that situation to hold boundaries or to stand up for myself. Makes me wonder what he's been reading lately... There's this sense of fear that comes with the thought of cutting her off completely. I can't even quantify what exactly I'm afraid of. I just am. And since I don't have a good reason to explain my actions, I feel a deep sense of shame.

My anxiety about going back to therapy has been getting stronger since Friday. Usually my shame spirals diminish after a few days but when talking to a friend earlier today I had a panic attack just thinking about facing my T. I 100% know that I need to be in therapy. I have a lot of stuff to work out. And since making some big changes, I'm actually at least somewhat attached to surviving and living my best life, which is a huge shift from where I was six months ago. I will likely need therapy for the rest of my life. I'm okay with that. But facing my T again is daunting. I'm tempted to just switch therapists but I know that's avoidance behavior. I also rationally know he wasn't trying to shame me exactly, just really protect me from myself. If her fingerprints are all over my new life, dragging me down, it's going to taint everything and keep me from enjoying school and my new career and I deserve better. I just need to figure out how to stop the shame spiral before it turns completely self-destructive.
 

Sadielady3

MyPTSD Pro
I've been thinking things over all day and I've decided that it's time to tell mom about grad school. I figure this for a few reasons. First, she's going to find out anyway that I'm going to go back to school to become a therapist. I figure it's never going to go over well but it might go better if I do it sooner than later instead of it having been a big secret. Second, it might make her distance herself from me instead of forcing me to play the bad guy. I haven't done anything wrong and by going to school I'm not doing anything wrong. This makes it her choice to accept me or not. My husband has cautioned me that this may make her more persistently nasty to me but that I will have to play the bad guy by cutting her off and maintaining boundaries. I guess in a sense it might finally break the thinly veiled civility that exists between us and force her to act in ways that clearly define her as doing something inappropriate. It may make things easier between my brother and I if that break finally comes. Third, and maybe most importantly, this fake relationship does not serve me in any way. What good is it to have a relationship with someone you can't be honest with about practically anything? She has no clue what my life is actually like. It's not the normal mother-daughter relationship where there are some topics off-limits. I literally tell her almost nothing. I can sit there on the phone for four hours essentially being ignored. I deserve to exist in my relationships. I deserve to matter. And I fully expect her to reject me but it's better than pretending that she doesn't anymore. I've come too far and worked too hard to find my authentic self and try to live a life that I want. I'm still very much a work in progress but I deserve to keep progressing.

Mom had surgery today and is extra cranky. My brother is staying with her for at least tonight, probably longer. He and I were texting back and forth because she was lying about several things that we both caught her in. His last text asked for me to send alcohol. I feel bad for him but I still have my vertigo and can't travel that far. Plus, she is nicer to him than me by a long shot. Hopefully he won't be stuck there for too long.

Tomorrow I have physical therapy. I'm going to try driving myself. This will be by far the longest journey I will have driven in months. Fingers crossed that things go well.
 

Sadielady3

MyPTSD Pro
Went to physical therapy on Saturday and it went well. I'm progressing along well and they think one more session at the end of August ought to do it.

Saw my BHT on Sunday morning. We discussed the conversation with my T for most of the session and she says that he overstepped as a therapist. She's likely right. Even though I agree with everything he said about mom, he did it in a way that felt judgmental, which is not what a therapist is supposed to do. She said that I'm going to need to discuss it with him in order to move on. It will change the relationship but sometimes that's how things are in life.

I actually went back to X's group tonight to try to get some support with my shame spiraling. Once I explained what it is, lots of people in the group felt that they do that as well. It was comforting to have good company. X says that the way out of it is self-compassion, which I've been working on for months now but still very much struggle with. It's getting better but I'm definitely not there. He also seemed to know the situation. I didn't mention that it was my therapist on the other end of the conversation but X talked about how sometimes as providers that they abuse their power. He went on to say that sometimes a patient stays too long with a therapist who is not right for them. I'm unsure if he was just ruminating as he does sometimes or if he was trying to tell me something specifically. If the main purpose of therapy is to grow and make healthy changes, then my T has been a great addition to my life. There's no denying that I've grown a great deal in the past year and a half and that he has helped me along the way. Still, talk therapy was a struggle with him before EMDR. I still don't know if we're actually done with EMDR or if we've been on break due to the vertigo. But maybe the old problems where the transference is a major struggle are resurfacing. I do get along and feel more comfortable with my BHT and she is working on becoming an approved provider for my insurance. Maybe the change makes sense if I don't have to leave my therapy groups. I honestly don't know but I do think that if I express my concerns over the last session, this relationship can be repaired. After all, my T was helping me make progress before EMDR, even if I did struggle with the relationship at times. But maybe that's just a thing I need to work through so I can be better at relationships in real life.
 

Sadielady3

MyPTSD Pro
Went to my therapy session with my T yesterday. I told him that I had felt triggered by the last session but I tried hard to be clear that I wasn't angry at him, blamed him in any way, nor that I thought he said anything that I disagreed with. He acknowledged that he had been much more directive than usual and that it was perhaps a bit jarring. He also clarified that he doesn't actually think it's in my best interest to completely cut my mother out of my life but that he thinks the amount of time spent talking to her needs to be drastically reduced. She and I seem to be falling into a once per week pattern now, which is better, but it's still for hours when she calls.

I applied for a job I really want. It's working for the state and it involves working with the school districts to help implement mental health programs. They're specifically looking for someone with a masters degree in special education and at least four years of teaching experience. I meet or exceed every requirement. The downfall is that the state typically takes a long time to interview and hire people. So I'm trying to be patient. So I've decided to start working on a big issue in my house. My husband and I struggle a great deal with hoarding. I'm naturally a messy person but my husband is deeper into hoarding than I am. We got into a huge fight last night because he was going over to help a family friend clean things out and pack things up for moving and he was excited about possibly picking up a free kiln. I'm not saying we'd never use the kiln but it would be very infrequent. I tried to make a deal with him that if it came into this house and wasn't used in the next year we'd get rid of it but he refused. He got angry and walked away from me instead of trying to explain the plans for this kiln. We honestly have way too much stuff in this house. I've filled up multiple garbage bags of junk this week but my husband's grand contribution was to throw out the bread machine. My bread machine. Granted, it doesn't work and needs to go, but he has plenty of stuff that doesn't work but refuses to get rid of anything because he's going to fix it "someday". Right now in my living room there is an e-bike he got cheap off of ebay that he's working on fixing. It's been there for months now. He claims he's going to ride it when he's done. Even if he finishes building it, I doubt he'll ride it more than once or twice. Someday I hope we can buy a house and have a workshop out back where he can tinker and keep all of this crap. But something has changed in me and I want to have a nice home but I don't know how possible this is going to be with him living in the house without having a separate space for his hoard. But damn is my office, which is my solitary space, going to be nice now. I will have my nicely decorated and clean space. I've put hours into working on it and I still have hours to go but every garbage bag that comes out feels really good.

My BHT says that my de-hoarding is a sign that some things inside of me are healing. Luckily nothing in the house is so bad yet that I physically can't get through it. And it's keeping me occupied while I wait to hear about the state job. And who knows, maybe I'll be teleworking and grateful for having a nice comfortable space that I take pride in on camera. At the very least, it'll be nice for grad school to have a nice environment to display.
 
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