Wrong Number

If you don’t love me

why do you keep me?

If you don’t love me

why do you care?

I stood before you

my hands out in supplication

tears crowding the corners of my eyes

mouth turned down

a sad clown’s frown

while raven’s clawed at my hair.

I rend my clothes

blacken my cheeks

with mascara rivers

as you stare in disbelief.

Suddenly I stop

and look at the number above you

realizing I am at the wrong house.

The one I needed to guilt lived at 217

and I was at 271.

Awkward…….

 

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Not his Responsibility

I was sitting here late yesterday afternoon when I received a text from the Ex. Not that this is unusual, he has been checking in on me every couple of days. Asking if I am okay, how my week went. Giving me the encouragement that I need to make it through. I don’t deserve him doing this, I was so brutal to him when we first split up, but that is a story for another day. Back to yesterday, this was actually the second text I received from him. The first was to ask if I would take T for nights during his week while he and K3 (I may need to write myself a K list) are working. So wohoooo extra time for me.  The second text was to tell me that T wanted to come home early. (We have switched from Sunday to Sunday to Monday to Monday so the Ex  has an extra full day with T.
I was a little shocked and asked if everything was alright? I was thinking they had had an  argument or fight. Wanting to have a handle of what I was going to be walking into. The Ex reassured me that everything was alright. And than, he said those words that cut me to my very soul. T wants to come home and cheer you up. I immediately fired back that I was okay and T could stay with his dad for the night. No, he was coming home. T was worried about me.
I text the Ex back and tell him that I have told T that he is not responsible for making me happy. That my depression makes me sad sometimes, but I will always come out at the other end of the tunnel. I probably should have said ‘could you please reiterate to T that he is not responsible for making me happy’ but I assumed that the Ex would know my shorthand solely because he is the Ex. Completely unrealistic as he never got my short handed way of speaking when we were married, why would I think that he would get it now? This is not a him fault, but a me fault. I do it to everyone.
When T got home, he introduced me to Mr. Tuna and the Granola Brothers. He drew faces on the tin and the packaging. I laughed. He sat here and talked and talked to me. His friend had phoned Saturday evening, so T called him back to see what was up. His friend, C, wanted him to come over for a bit and hang out. This does not happen often as usually C is not home on weekends. T comes out of his room, it has begun already, hands me my phone and begins to talk again. I asked what was what ? Oh C had wanted him to come over and hang out but T had felt that it was better to stay home with me. He wanted to be home with me.
As much as I reassured him that I was fine and he could go, T was adamant that he was not going anywhere. He was staying glued to my side.
I again stated to him that it was not up to him to make me happy. That that was my responsibility. His was to be my son and have fun with his friends. While I molded him into a decent human being. He completely ignored me and said, ‘Of course it is mom, who else is going to make you happy.’
Is this what I have done to him? I work so hard not to have him feel this way. Even when I am crying I talk to him and explain that there is nothing that he has done. There is nothing that anyone has done. That I have to let the tears work their way through my system. But I guess he notices those small cues that I cannot hide. The ones that give away that I am not 100% myself.
I am feeling guilt. I want T to be a child for as long as possible. To have that innocence (not the same innocence a child of the ’70’s had but the version that exists now) and not be burdened with the cares of adulthood and the outside world. Yes, things are very different and kids grow up unbelievable fast in today’s world, but one thing remains the same, we do not want to thrust our children into adult situations. And yet, it appears that I am doing so.
I have written before how I make a concentrated effort when T is here. Doing the dishes, tidying up (I am still putting off cleaning apartment with the ‘well V isn’t here until tomorrow it is okay to do it tomorrow morning.’ excuse is the one I am using.) I make sure they are done. Bed being made. Little things as we both settle into our weekly routine. He is smarter than the average bear is T, and he catches the small things most would not even spot.
Today, he is not his bouncing self. Not feeling well, tummy hurts and he has a headache, covering the top of his head. I asked him if he was hungry? No definitely not that, he does not want to eat. I asked if he was saying he was sick so that he could stay home with me? No, he really does not feel well. So as I write this, I am debating whether or not to send him to school. Am I caving into and reaffirming to him that I need him if I allow him to stay home, or is he truly not feeling well and I am making a mountain out of a mole hill?
I have until 8:30 a.m. to make my decision. At the moment T is laying on the couch wrapped in his blanket, Thomas draped across his lap. He has no fever but is clammy despite having taken his shower already.
I will debate the pros and cons of keeping him home from school today. And I am going to figure out a way to ensure that my 9 year old son does not feel that he is responsible for my emotional well being.

Scorecard

***Picture found on Internet feeling a little lighthearted 🙂
I figured that I should take a look at this week and see how things have been. I mean yes, I know that emotionally I have been all over the map. Some days I feel like I have two faces, a smiling I am doing ok face and the one that has tears leaking from its eyes.
This has been a rougher week.
I am not eating right because I do not have the oomph to get up and make something. I have been making an effort, but not the same as when I am in an ‘up’ mood. Yogurt, toast, oatmeal and salad. Fish and pork tenderloin. So I am putting nutrients into my body.
The apartment as I mentioned before is beginning to look at little disastrous. It is begin to nibble at the edges of my consciousness but not enough so that I am going to clean. However, I am having coffee with V and she is bringing her son with her on Tuesday. I will have to clean before than, only because I would be embarrassed to have V see the apartment looking like this.  Also, I have only been scooping the cat litter every other day. I use to be diligent in scooping daily. (I have two cats and three litter boxes) All of these are small indicators that the week was not that terrific.
Than, the feeling of sadness that I could not explain that permeated me from Thursday to Friday night. I cried a lot over those 24/36 hours. That was a treat and a half. My eyes, by the time I went to bed last night, ached from crying and were swollen. However, the bonus was that I could finally use my nose to actually breathe through.
Today I am good.
I have energy.
I want to go for a walk.
I have done a load of laundry and put it in the dryer.
I made my bed.
I have eaten a slice of toast.
I have a bad habit of looking at these good days and waiting for the other shoe to drop. Waiting for the inevitable downswing of emotions that I have. I ruin them by feeling guilty and hearing that voice wondering why I am home. I do that to myself.
Today, I am going to change that. We all know that it is not going to be an easy habit to break. It is human nature to count up all our goods and wonder what bad will even it out. But that is not the way life works. There are no scorecards in life, with checks and balances for good and bad days.
Today I am allowing myself to enjoy my upswing. I will take advantage of it while I can, without going overboard. And I am going to throw away the scorecard I have been keeping.

Rome wasn’t built in a Day

Of late I have been doing a lot of thinking. Well what else am I suppose to do with all this time off? I spent the majority of last week not actively thinking about anything because the week before had been exhausting in all the connections I was making about my past and my depression. How, while I have dealt with the surface issues, I have never really found the root cause of my depression/self-harming/addictive behaviour.

Yesterday I was talking with V, one of my greatest friends. She checks in with me on a daily basis. I have known her for something like 10/11 years. We worked together in the same department until I transfered to the front. I tell her a lot. Well maybe not some stuff, like how when I fall down in the cesspool of depression that I am afraid to reach out because who the hell cares? Yeah, yeah I know, but that is how I feel.

We were or rather I was telling her that I need to go back and read the beginning of 2017’s blogs and poetry. I am fairly positive if I look back, that it began than if not the summer of 2016. However there is no strong indication of that and I do not have a written timeline for than. I do for 2017. That while I went back onto my meds, I continued to stuff whatever was causing me to fall, back down into the ‘If I don’t acknowledge it it is not real’ part of myself.

Throughout the year I was doing really well, or so I thought. Looking back with perfect vision I can see that that is not so. There are times where I pulled myself up and said this is just a mood, pms, the cat threw up type of day. I did not acknowledge that I was falling apart. Instead, I began to consume the pills while cutting back on the alcohol. Cut off one addiction and begin the pills to help numb me. What a wonderful way of coping I have/had.

V after I told her this, said to me, Jay, it took a year or more to build, you cannot expect that it is going to be fixed in a couple of weeks. And she is right. The medication that I am on is doing its job in leveling out my brain chemicals so that I am ok. What it is not doing is getting to the root cause. It is not helping me not to cry on a daily basis. It does not help with the guilt that I feel because some days are great and well, why can I not work, until I begin to cry.

I am working hard to not feel guilty. That having a mental illness is nothing to be ashamed of. No one is going to mark a capital D on my forehead to mark me out. However mental illness still carries a stigma. Many people cannot understand how it is not a matter of changing my thought process or doing things that I enjoy, and because they don’t understand, nor do they chose to educate themselves, they will say things like ‘oh I made you smile you must feel better’ or ‘I am sure that your problems are not that bad’ or ‘What is your game plan?’

I look fine on the outside. There are no scars, no visible incisions, no bandaids to pinpoint where my boo boo is. Inside is a different story. As I said the medication is working to level out my brain chemistry, but my emotions are still up and down. I am actively poking around in my brain trying to recall memories, especially in regards to my depression. What lead up to them, how did I cope (easy enough answer alcohol/pills) and how did I return to participating in my life.

Over the weekend, I had crawled into bed to read. But I began having thoughts about things from my past. I thought okay I had better jot some of these down. So I grabbed my notebook and began typing. I began approximately in 1977 (5) to 1995 (23). When I was done I had a very long list. Some things are memories that I have and have no real bearing on my depression, I included them anyways because they are some of the few memories that I have. And there may be reasons why they are still in my head. I still have from 1995 (when I met my ex) to present day to work through yet. I have not even begun counselling yet and I have a list as long as my arm.

Even though the list is a long one, underneath there is the woman I am to become. Lighthearted, free and able to live and love her life.

 

 

Friday Sept. 8

T began school on Wednesday. The above picture was taken before we left for school. He was grinning when he came out of his class and I was there to greet him. He said he had had a good day. I was encouraged given that T is not a huge fan of the education process. He read 51 pages in his new Dogman book Wednesday evening. Even more encouraging. And he went to bed like a champ.

Thursday did not have an auspicious beginning. I was up and down all night long. My hips and lower back were killing me. (I have since discovered the reason why) And so finally at 4 a.m. or so I rolled out of bed. Made a pot of coffee and sat down to try and be productive. But I could not focus. My head felt woozy and I ached everywhere. It got to such a point that I went and laid down on the couch curled into myself as I tried to get warm.

T had wanted me to walk him to school but that was not going to happen. I felt like I could not walk all the way to his school, as I was hobbling around my hips screaming in agony and my lower back felt as though something was reaching in and twisting all the muscles upside down and knotted. I took two extra strength Motrin and began to have some mobility in my legs. I hopped in the car to do my grocery shopping and a Wal-mart run.

By the time I got home it (and at this time I was still not sure what it was) my good feeling had worn off. I unpacked the groceries and left off portioning out the meat until today. Laid down on the couch and hauled the blanket over top of me. And fell asleep. I did awaken once but still tired, went back to sleep. The next time I woke up I was freezing. Ice cold. My teeth were chattering, my body shaking. I could not believe I had the flu but there you have it, I did.

T came home Thursday and dropped off his bag and went out to play with his friends. A good time was had by all and T even came inside and spent the majority of his evening with me. Went to bed without an problems. And than it began.

‘Mom, do I have to go to school tomorrow?’

‘Yes you do.’

‘But I want to stay home with you. I don’t want to go to school.’

‘Why not? What is going on tomorrow you don’t want to do?’

‘Nothing I just need a long weekend.’

‘No, you are going to school.’

And the crying began. I am positive that he cried himself to sleep. I too fell asleep. And began the night from a really bad place. It was not hell like but it was not good. I was up and down, freezing and hot. My body was still all achy. The cats finally had enough of my tossing and turning and moved to the other side of the bed. At 3ish or so, I awoke and thought I can’t handle this any more. I reached down and pulled up the fluffy blanket that I have at the foot of the bed. I never use it. Still aching I decided on more Motrin and hobbled to the kitchen for them and a swig of Pepsi. I had a sugar craving. When I went to get back in bed I realized how cold it was and turned on the heat. Yes I turned on the heat, pulled on a sweat jacket and crawled back into bed.

At 6 a.m. T’s alarm went off and I rolled over. I was coated in flu sweat, my sweat jack sodden, my hair was even wet. I rolled out of bed and turned the heat off. Went in and shook T to get up. Turned his alarm off as it was still blaring. He got up and was in a great mood. Right up until 8 a.m. when I made him get off computer and brush his teeth. I realized that I did not hear the water and told T to get in there. That is when he said he was not going to school today.

I did not handle the situation well. I could say it is because I am tired, I have the flu, I am a million and one things, but pissed off for this one. T kept saying he wanted to spend the day with me. Why did I not want to spend the day with him? I tried the explanation thing, to no avail. And than he began to cry and whine. He did not want to go to school. He wanted to spend the day with me. All in a whiney voice as he snorted back his snot his eyes kinda shiny with tears.

I told him I did not take kindly to the manipulative tactic he was  attempting to use on me. I told him to get his sweater on. More crying. More whining. I told him to get his shoes on. More crying. More whining. Are you sensing the theme here?

We walked down to the garbage and T was insisting that I walk him to school. So he could spend as much time with me as possible. I said fine but we had to go back home so I could change and get the keys. He cried the entire way back. And while he sat on the stairs. And than again when we got outside. He kept saying he would miss me. He needed to be with me today.

T cried all the way to school. Holding my hand. I was short with him because well, he had been using that whining now for almost 45 minutes. He kept asking me to turn around and go back home. I was so angry. I informed him that we were going to go and talk to his teacher. We walked up there and at first I figured it would be okay, he would see his friends and that would be end of it. But no.

At his hut I told him to leave his bag there and go play with his friends. He refused. And than proceeded to tell me he was going home. He was not going into the classroom. That is when I lost all semblance of even trying for the nonchalant I have it all together type of mom. I grabbed him by his school bag and dragged him over to the stairs. He slipped and there I was dragging him up the stairs to the door.

Knocked on door and went in to talk to his teacher. T cried the whole time. I was short and to the point with his teacher.  I really had no idea where this was coming from. He felt as though he could get nothing right in class. Math was awful and he was struggling with it already. I did not tell him that T did not like him because well T did tell me that one in confidence. So I am sharing in a blog, on the internet, that is not breaking confidence clause is it?

To top it off I look like crap because of the rough night. I am coated in and smell of flu sweat, my hair is barely combed and I had not brushed my teeth yet so was really in no position to even initiate adult like conversation.

I gave T one last hug and had to unwrap his arms from around my waist. I promised I would be back at 3:45 to meet him. I would be standing right outside the classroom. And than I walked out the door. Coldly, callously, T’s little staring after me with betrayal written all over his face.

Did I want to comfort him? Yes. Wrap my arms around him and tell him that it would all be okay? Yes. That I want to pull out my magic wand and fix all that is wrong in his life? Yes.

Instead I had to be a mean mom. I had to harden my heart and walk away. T is not going to hate me forever and ever, although at this point and time I am sure I am his least favorite person, next to the teacher. And the reason I had to do this was because I need to set limits and boundaries with T.

I know he is growing up and out, he is wanting his independence and his safety blanket mom waiting in the wings. I know that he will push me to see what point he can actually get away to before I order the cease and desist. And also because not everything in life is about fun and games.

I will go pick T up after school. We will take a slow walk home and I will get him some ice cream too. We will have a conversation about his behaviour and mine. I will apologize for some of the things I said. And hopefully I have established a new boundary that T will respect. Otherwise it is going to be a long winter for T with reading as his only occupation.

I’m Sorry…..so very sorry

When I met you our time was so brief

but a moment in our present

that quickly became the past,

a silent kiss of desire hidden within a secret.

It was you I turned to during times of trouble

and even from afar

you strove to be my hero,

you worked to build my dreams.

I filled my head with thoughts of fancy

waiting and biding my time

til boredom and neglect

did make me seek out others.

The pain inflicted

wanting and yet trying so hard

to remain true and dear

when really, all you had to do was beckon.

I sowed my truth

and now must pay

for although I offered penence

you did not come near.

I lost you to delay

to fates interception

I lost more than you

I lost a way of life.

I am sorry.

I broke your heart.

I made you feel so low.

I made myself a prize for second place.

Good bye.

Til once more we meet

maybe this time will be different

maybe this time I can reopen your heart.

©Jay-lyn Doerksen

September 6/17

Rabbit Hole

We sat on sun warmed sand

your arms around me

as we watched the fiery sun

dip beneath the depths.

As the full moon

swanned into the sky

brilliant pinpricks of light sparkled above

and I sighed,

lost in contentment.

Never to last,

not in my happiness

blackness soon did creep.

Morose and unable to cope

you stared at me as I laid in the bed

wanting nothing more than for me to return

so we could be as one again.

Lost down the rabbit hole

sucked through this cycle of weeping and despair.

My fingers barely reach above the current

do you see it there?

©Jay-lyn Doerksen

August 17/17