He’s back…….

Picture is one of my own.

I have had a really good week. Short as it was only a 32 hour work week. Work has been humming along. I am getting things done. I am getting ready for my 2 weeks vacation at the end of August. I have been exercising on a regular basis. And beginning to see results.

So despite my promise to myself that I was not going to drink until September 10th, I decided that I would have a glass of wine to celebrate my week. I even discussed it with mom. Deciding that if I was going to fail and fall off the wagon, I would rather do it now, while T is gone rather than when he is here to be disappointed by my lack of control.

So I had that first glass of wine while I made supper. Checking emails and yes it went down nice and smooth. I decided to have another with dinner. I never did finish that second glass of wine on Thursday evening. Was in bed and asleep just shortly after 8 p.m. Awoke in the morning with that taste in my mouth and a sense of relief. As nice as that first glass had been, having quit cold, I realize I do not need nor crave it as I had been just a month ago.

Friday I rocked it out. Woke up at 4, looked at the clock and thought I can get up now. (This in response to my awakening at 12 and thinking I could get up.) I cleaned the house and had my laundry done before 6 a.m. Than I waited for 9 as I was doing shopping. Back to school and grocery. My day was amazing. And again, I was in bed early.

Yesterday was a typical day. Nothing out of the ordinary. Not really. Until it struck me. My hands began to shake, I could feel my heart racing. A tightening of my skin. I am sure my pupils were dilated. I took a deep breath and placed my hands firmly on the table.

  1. Something I can feel and concentrate on.
  2. Deep Breath and feel the floor beneath your feet, the table beneath your hands.
  3. Deep Breath and feel the chair beneath your butt, the floor beneath your feet, the table beneath your hands.
  4. Deep Breath and feel the soft brush of Lucky’s fur as she winds around your ankles, feel the chair beneath your butt, the floor beneath your feet, the table beneath your hands.
  5. Deep Breath, Exhale, open your eyes, feel how your are grounded, centered, there is nothing here.

It took several minutes of this. Finally I could feel my heart begin to slow and the flight or fight adrenaline rush began to subside. I was still shaking and gulping to swallow. The aftermath of an anxiety attack that hit me out of the blue. It has been several months since I last had an attack. There had been absolutely nothing to have precipitated it. I was sitting relaxing on the computer.

Or was there? I am a bit of a superstitious person. Not like a black cat crossing my path is bad luck, or if my nose is itchy I am going to kiss a fool. No, mine is more like if I hit all the green lights on the way to work, it is going to be a good day. Small things like that. If you have a stream of good luck, do not speak it out loud for you shall jinx it.

Still buried deep within my brain is a shard of anxiety. The black despair that makes me think that I am screwing everything up and suddenly it is making a reappearance. Why? Work is going really well. I am letting go of some things and delegating to my supervisors and staff. It is a hard and scary step for me. Maybe too well?

I am healthy and happy. Energetic, alive, in a way that I have never been before.

Suddenly I realize what Thursday was about. The desire to drink, “celebrate” my week had been a test. Subconsciously I was testing myself and I had won.

Whoa whoa whoa, anxiety suddenly rears up. Hang on here. Jay is happy, things are going well. Oh no, we most certainly cannot have that. We cannot allow her to ride away from us, nope, nope get out that rope and lasso that girl back here.

Yes anxiety has become a cowboy so I can put a face to him. Mock him when I am well. Envision myself as my own Good Sheriff battling the Evil Sheriff for control of my brain when he comes out to cause trouble.

He ropes me. I use my technique to ground and center my being, wriggling my way out of the lasso. We have a stare down and eventually he slinks away, hat pulled low over his brow so I cannot see his malevolent stare. He will be back. Possibly next time with guns drawn. That is okay. I won this time.

 

Stain upon my soul

I wrote this in 2012 on this day. I have been paying attention to my ‘On this day….’ and rediscovering lost words. Picture is also mine.

Begone, beyond, feelings tossed to the moors

frightful, disturbing, unwanted, pain

Rapture, only found with denial, with revulsion

go not into the embrace, but fight for hell.

You say you will forgive me, you will wipe away my tears

you say that your eyes alone, can divine the stain upon my soul.

You say that through you and you alone, can I find salvation.

yet you turn your head, your ears, your eyes

When I do not behave;

how your ambassadors on earth feel I should.

Call me not a coward, nor defiant

you and you alone gave me free will

My choice, my decision, my desire

hurt not others, all shall be good.

Find the stain upon my soul,

enough to curse me.

To send me to hell.

Yet you gave me the ability to choose,

and still you punish.

©Jay-lyn Doerksen

August 5/12

 

 

 

Not really sure….

I am going to apologize in advance. This is probably going to be a rather disjointed and completely odd blog. Basically it is going to end up much like my actual conversations do. All over the place. Because without fail, one thing I am talking about leads seamlessly to this other thing. It all makes sense. At least in my mind, however, I have been known to cause some deep confusion and perplexity. Thus my advanced ‘I am so sorry.’

I have not written much. Have been going through a lot of my older poetry and posting those as they have struck a chord with me. I have been rereading posts on Facebook that I made as I began to recover from my depressive state in 2014. Those have been hard to read. I find myself crying in sympathy for the creature I was. So broken and alone. Even though I was still married at the time, a mother, a daughter, a sister, unfortunately as hard as they tried, they could not really understand what I was going through.

Admittedly that depressive episode sent me on an evolutionary journey. I began to claw back my space, my time, my self. I began to be more confident and happy. I spread out my interests and was no longer afraid to say this is me. I put myself in the forefront as opposed to always hiding in the background. I could finally look in the mirror and not only like but be proud of the woman who was looking back at me. It lead to the dissolving of my marriage as I realized that the man I had just spent the last 20 years with, was not the love of my life. We did not have anything in common besides our son. I am grateful for the child that we created but I am a better woman, a better mother for being apart from him. Much as he is a better person, a better man for being without me. He told me at one part that this was the best thing to happen to him, he could not remember when last he had been this happy. I had a few people say he was trying to anger me, I said I hoped not, because I really do want him to be happy.

In the last year and a bit I have learned a hell of a lot again about myself. One is that I will need to remain on my anti-depressants for life. This causes me a wee bit of a quandary for I write like a demon when I am depressed. The words flow and bite, I have no shortage of ideas. My creativity spirals and dips, clinging to the wall and than breaking apart to dance in raindrops all around me. I know that I can write when I am happy. I wrote an entire novel in high school and no one can say I was depressed that whole time.

Oh wait, it was high school. I was the opposite of popular. But I had rocking friends and really who wants to be a part of the blonde perfection team? Such a hard standard to live up to.

This passed year I have made some huge changes. December 9/16 I quit smoking. My blood pressure was out of control. February 2017 I went back on my meds and my life has been amazing since I crawled out of that black cesspool. July 1/17 I quit drinking alcohol. At least until the end of my holidays on Sept. 10th. I needed to prove to myself that I could.

My father was an alcoholic. He died 13 years ago. Not really missed. I found myself in a pattern of always finding men like him. Incapable of looking after themselves, drinkers, irresponsible. Despite the fact that I would constantly promise myself that I would not be with nor marry a man like my father in all regards I did. Than once my marriage imploded (it did not dissolve amicably made worse by our continued living together until nearly 6 months later) I began to drink. And heavily.

So I made the decision that I was done. No more. T accused me of quitting drinking because Chichi (my mom) was home. I was honest with him and told him I quit because it was becoming a problem. He was stopped by that answer. Every so often I would really like a glass of wine but I think about T and this promise that I have made myself and eventually that urge passes.

I, who have always despised and never really required exercise, have added it to my daily routine. I was given a stationary bike that I ride between 1/2 to 3/4 of an hour 3 to 4x a week. I also have some toning exercises that I have thrown in for myself. Nothing serious, no work out DVD just a few things to tone and shape.

I have also changed the way that I eat. More fish, salad. Fresh veggies. Less pizza, fast food. Eating breakfast. Not sure if this also has to do with my turning 45 this year but it really has been a year of change thus far.

My blood pressure is the envy of mom. I am happy all the time. Laughing. T is with his dad for the next three weeks and I was telling my boss about it. Said to him ‘I have three weeks to do the things I cannot do while I have T with me. And than after that I have him for three straight weeks as well.’ My boss looked at me and said ‘Only you could find the positive in this.’

It took me a long while to compute what he had said to me. And it made me realize how far I have come in the last six months. How much happier I am. How I always have a smile on my face, a giggle or laugh ready. I will retrain my brain on writing happy if that is what it takes. Or it might just be the summer thang.

When I was younger I could only write from September to June. The school year. Do not ask me why. It may be that I love being outside and in the sun during the summer. Friends were always available because well, we were kids. So before I really panic I will wait for the school year to roll around and see if I cannot become more productive in my writing.

Until than I will reread and rediscover older poetry. If it strikes me and makes me think, I will post. I am okay with that. For as I discover this new person who is me, I am patient and willing to bet that eventually, the neural pathways will straighten out and the creativity will once more pour forth from me. 🙂

 

Wonder where he gets it?

This has certainly been a week of discoveries. I took holidays this July (1 week only) for the first time in 3 years. And T and me spent this week up with my mom. Whom I love with all my heart. But lordy spending all this time in a three bedroom smallish cabin is enough to make a woman tear her hair out. Even when T is with me we still have time apart. He goes outside to play, I get fifteen minutes of silence.

On Wednesday I announced to mom that I required 15 minutes, just 15 to go for a walk by myself and rebalance. This was way too much together time. She huffed. T waved as I walked away. I tried to explain later to her why it was required but am not sure that she really got it.

Which leads me to the ‘wonder where he gets it’? T and mom started butting heads on Tuesday I believe it was. Monday when we arrived it was gorgeous out. Mom and GU-S (great uncle-mom’s youngest brother) immediately put T to work. I sat on the deck soaking up the sun and reading. I was to build the fire. There was too much in the fire pit and anyways once I got the fire started the uncle took over.

Tuesday though, was bleak and rainy. Windy too. We were all on top of one another and I allowed T to play his video games on the phone. Not my phone lol but a phone his dad had given him. No sim card but GU-S had hooked him up to the internet so it was all good. I had checked these games the night before and had no issues with him playing. Did I maybe allow him to play too much and too long? Mom certainly thought so while I was just happy that I was not subjected to the boredom song. And this was when the smart mouth and constant desire to be last came to the forefront.

I have never realized, and that may be because he does not pull it that often with me, that T has a need to have the final word. But oh lordy, once mom pointed it out to me, I heard it. I saw it occurring. There were a lot of warning low grumbles of ‘T that is enough.’ There was mom telling me that I needed to nip this in the bud or I would end up regretting it. T was being a smartass and for the most part I could deal but not when I was getting it from both sides.

Wednesday also dawned grey and wet. Oh lordy not another day spent inside with these two! I was not sure that I was going to be able to handle it. (Thankfully T’s little friend KJ had arrived on Tuesday evening and eventually the sun broke through allowing me to sit in the back reading and chilling and getting my shore up time.) Mom asked me a few questions to which I shot back some smartass comments. She than pointed out to me that it wasn’t a wonder T had a smart mouth he learned it from me.

T is always right. He will twist and turn his facts to prove he is right. He also, with mom it seems, needs to have the last word. Mom and me were talking about something, I cannot remember what now but she made a comment and she says to me ‘well I wonder where T has learned the smartass behaviour and need to be last.’ ‘I do not always have to have the last word and I wonder where I learned it from?’ an arched eyebrow as I looked at her.

‘Jay, I am funny not sarcastic and you always have to have the last word.’ She is opening the door to go in. ‘I do not.’ I retort quite like the 8 year old son I have. Mom looks at me and just shakes her head.

I never have noticed that I require the last word. I rarely argue with anyone any more. I do not argue with folks at work, nor do I talk enough to my bro to have any arguments. Which leaves only T and myself. And usually those arguments end with one or both of us in angry tears. And I always get the last word in as the parent.

This picture was taken on Thursday after a huge battle before leaving the cabin. Mom wanted to do her laundry. T had a fight with KJ. He was not pleased that he had to go to Winnipeg Beach with us. There was yelling. I took the phone away and he was reduced to tears. I also threatened to put him in the car myself if he didn’t get in there. Not sure how I would have accomplished that as he is a very solid little boy.

Once in Winnipeg Beach, I made him come along on our walk, threatening that I could not leave him in the car as it was illegal. The RCMP would arrest me for child endangerment. I made him hold my hand as we walked. T was less than thrilled with me.

As he stomped along pouting, mom and me walked behind him talking about this and that. Until he saw the play structure, with boys playing. Mom had intentionally guided us that way. We left him to play while we took a short stroll. Mom wanted to get some pics of me so I told T where we were headed and I would come back for him. Everyone was happy.

After we were done, mom headed back to the laundry mat to get her clothes and I went off to collect T. Who was heading towards me, a little distraught. He had come looking for mom and me and may have panicked a wee bit when I was not where I said that I was going to be.

As we walked along, he informed me that he loved me. And he held onto me. Of his own volition. I made him stop and took this picture of us. We were both happy and in a good mood. I got him ice cream. And one for mom.

More and more do I see myself in T. I am sure that when he is with his dad, his dad sees all sorts of habits/behaviours that are just like his own. I do believe (and this might be wishful thinking) that more and more, his internal unseen building blocks are more like mine. He is tenacious and sarcastic and stubborn. He spins fiction into facts and they sound good. He is my son.

It is summer time…..

Not entirely sure who is more excited for summer. Me, T or mom? Me, I love basking in the sun. Lying on the lounger, reading, getting a tan. T, easy enough, there is no school. Mom because she is home and gets to see her grandchildren and children.

Last year was the first year that my ex and me were in different homes. Which lead to a lot of behavioural issues with T as he tested boundaries, came to grips with the different lifestyle he now had to embrace. And mom got to witness the issues which lead her to have some rather distant feelings towards her grandson.

I understand. My own grandmother and me had a relationship that did not warm until I was an adult. Why? Because mom shared a lot with her, just as I share a lot with mom. This leads to judgements because this is their child that they want to protect. And also it bugged(s) the hell out of them to see disrespect being served to their children.

This year is different. Mom again came out and spent a few days with us. During school. So she walked to meet T after school, went to his school picnic. The two of them were able to spend one on one time together and T is a very different child than he was last year.

For myself, I am more confident than I was a year ago. Between learning how to stand on my own two feet and growing into most aspects of my life, the confidence oozes out of me. I think it may be a little disconcerting for some, but since going back onto my meds and just embracing the joy of life, I am evolving into the woman I always imagined that I would be.

Which leads me to the summer break. And the desire to spend more time up at the beach with mom and T. Actually, just the desire to spend more time with the two of them, and to watch a relationship evolve between the two that I thought might not happen.

I am very close with mom. So when she and T had their differences (okay he was a little brat and mom was frustrated with his behaviour and I really was no help) it hurt me. I want them to share the type of relationship that I had with my amma when I was little, with my grandfather as a teenager and young adult and with my grandma as I became an adult. It is not anything that I can force because than the closeness was not there.

But this year. This year it is. I am watching a relationship unfold that is going to benefit both mom and T. There are no words to describe the relationship I had with my three grandparents. Each one of them treated me differently and I learned so much from them. I loved each and every one of them differently and to this day (amma died when I was 10, grandpa when I was 21 and grandma when I was 39) I still tell T stories about all three of them. Today on the way home from the city T and me, we had a great conversation about gg-my grandma, his great grandma.

There has been laughter, cheers and the two of them have started an Uno contest. I am sure it will last all summer long. So the reason that I am not sure who is more excited has to do with this fragile new relationship that is forming before my eyes. I saw mom’s eyes gleam with excitment as she told me not once but several times how different T was. I witnessed how T reacted to mom, cleaning up (his bedroom folks is walkable!!!!!) no arguing and he wanted to be with her.

As for me, well I am excited to take a week’s holiday in July. I am so excited to see mom and T talking and being together. And they are funny. This is an example (I chortled and chortled about this):

A gentleman rides by us on his bike. I had to remind mom to move over on the path. Tember watches him go by and looks at me.

‘Mom, he has man boobs.’ he whispers kinda loudly.

‘They are suppose to have bells to let us know they are coming,’ mom sighs.

‘You call them bells?’ T is very confused. (at this point I began chortling)

Both mom and T were a little confused. But they got it worked out. And I giggled.

So maybe, truth be told, I am looking forward to this summer more than mom and T. They might be looking forward to spending time together. I am looking forward to the conversations, actions and weirdness that is going to come from our spending time together. There are going to be a lot of funny blogs/ideas that come out from this.

 

Solace

As I lay in your arms

tears flowing down my cheeks

I realize that all this time

I have been looking for solace.

For someone to hold me near

and support the dreams I have

For someone to help me dance,

treading among the starlight.

Had I not met you, I would still be in the dark

had I not met you, I would have lost a piece of myself.

Had I not met you, I would still be dreamless

had I not met you, I would never have realized

The secret parts that I hid.

©Jay-lyn Doerksen

June 9/17

 

A Mother’s Guilt

“Mom! Mom!” I bolted upright from a dead sleep sure that some new crisis had arisen. “What buddy?” I groggily call back trying to find my glasses. “I am all cured. No stomach ache, no headache!” “That is great buddy, but it is only 7 a.m. go back to sleep!” June 3/17 @ 6:55 a.m. 

This is my week with T. My heart. My soul. I watched him cry and sob as his head throbbed and his tummy hurt. I felt as though that pain would cleave me in two. I could do nothing to help him.

After our doctor appointment on Wednesday I text my boss to let him know that T was down and out for the next two days. I was in a way hoping that he would tell me that I should take the time and be with my son. For it is my week and he is ill on my watch. The offer was not made so I had to take my ex up on his offer to watch T for me. He felt that he ‘owed’ me.

Thursday morning he arrived to pick T up. T was still asleep when he got here. I woke him up and he stumbled up the stairs. Whimpering a little at the pain but a trooper still. I worked at 5:30 this morning so again asked what the plan was. Which is when I found out that T was not going to be home until today when I got off at 2. I walked down the stairs, my heart breaking in two and I cried.

Nothing mattered to me. I went to work, and thank goodness it was quiet. I spent my day tidying my desk and getting all my paperwork caught up that I had been neglecting for the longest time. Got organized. Do not need my boss to put down that the thing I need to work on is maintaining a clean desk. (In an aside, I have read that a messy desk is the sign of an intelligence person so who am I to argue?)

I text my ex. I tried calling. I could not get through. My heart begins to race. T never gets sick like this. The last time he was this sick was at about a year and a half, and we were in hospital for three days while he had pneumonia. I was scared sick, than feeling that I had failed him as a mother.

My evening was relatively quiet as I sat here. I text the ex a couple of times. I asked that T call me. I waited. And than he did. In tears. Telling me that his tummy hurt. Asking me why I had to go to work and could not come and get him. I tried to be so strong. I told him how great he was doing because he had not asked for Advil since 6:30 a.m. and it was 9:30 p.m. I asked how the pain was. Had he eaten? I could hear his fear. I told him I loved him and could I please speak to his dad?

I burst into tears when my ex got on the phone. I demanded to know what he was doing to help T. I was livid because I could tell that he had been drinking. His dad came out. It was a party. (Yes there is some lingering anger issues here) He tried to tell me it was all good. The I did not need to be there, he was. And I said to him “That is not what this is about. I am his mother. That I cannot be there to hold him, to help him kills me. When we get off the phone you go inside and you cuddle him. Promise me!”

He promised. I think he was chastened. I was sobbing. My baby needed me and yet I could not be there for him.

Do I not trust my ex to do the right thing? Not at all. However, I felt that he did not quite see how extreme this was. Our son is never sick. Sniffles, flu, but down and out? Never.

This morning I lasted until 9 a.m. before I text to see how T was. And was told he had not eaten. That he had puked. And I freaked. This was an escalation, not a getting better. Now I am panicking. I made an appointment with the Quick Care Clinic because, well, I am a mom and I jump to insane conclusions when my normally healthy child is so ill.

On Wednesday I got everything done before 8 a.m. Today, I was done by 7:30. I do what I have to do. But that is not where my heart is. I argue with my phone when I received messages that are not about T. I tried calling my ex and finally shot him a message saying that his house line was screwed and to please let me know what was going on with my son.

When I showed up at 2:30 to pick up T he did not come out to greet me. I was concerned. Asked the ex where is he? In the house.  I went in and he is laying on the couch his head covered and I look at the ex and say ‘He is still sleeping??????’ T pops up and looks at me. ‘Hi mom.’

Than he stood up. Oh dear lord, really? The pants he wore were six inches above his ankles. I looked at the ex and went really? What the hell are those? T bursts into tears and falls on couch covering himself with his blanket. I rush to him and apologize, brushing his tears away.

I tell him we will stop at home and change before the appointment at the Quick Care Clinic. That is when he tells me he does not want to go. His dad and I cajoled and he agreed. We walk outside and he trips falling head over heels. This has not been a good week for my baby.

His head is aching a little and as we drive along I try to hold his hand. He is not in the mood. Still a little weepy. When suddenly he announces that he is starving. I look at him and ask what he has eaten today? Nothing. We drive along and I tell him he has a choice. How is he feeling? Does he want to see the Nurse Practitioner? T tells me that he is feeling better. He is hungry.

I ask again what he would like for supper? He says to me you mean lunch right mom? Okay buddy what do you want? McDonald’s mom. I am really hungry.

I stared at him. The good mom is already nattering away, ‘Jay don’t you dare. He has not had anything substantial to eat in 72 hours. That is not the way to go.’ Mom who is experiencing reality and relief ‘Jay let the boy have whatever he wants so long as he eats it.’ T did ask for milk with his happy meal and drank it all. As well as eating everything.

As I sit here typing this, he is curled up in his bed, eating half a freezie watching Youtube. He was cracking jokes and making fun of me earlier so I know that he is on the upswing.

T is my life. Nothing and no body matters more to me than he does. That I could not be there for him each and every day that he was ill, when he required his mother to hold him and cuddle him, rips my heart asunder. The stress and fear that I felt because he was not in my presence, where I could ensure his well being, was crippling.

T is my life. He is my heart. He is my soul. He is my inspiration. He is the reason why I want to achieve and be a better person. And he is the only boy (man) who has the ability to rip the heart from my chest. And I will love him forever.