Her Voice.

I am L’s voice.

When she talks about pain, it is a level of pain that leaves most people in tears. Having dealt with constant physical pain every day of her life, she has a high pain threshold. So when she talks about being bothered by pain, listen carefully and do not dismiss a single word.

When she says the pain is preventing her from sleeping, realise that “being tired” is her way of saying she is experiencing severe sleep deprivation from nightly lack of sleep. Realise that fragmented hours of sleep are nowhere near as beneficial as a solid block of deep sleep. Realise that this has been her experience for months. Realise how difficult it is to still function under these conditions, and that running on autopilot is not a healthy situation.

The pain takes so many forms. It is frequently the sharp stabbing pain of knives. It is hot and cold throbbing, sweats and swelling. It is spasms of nerve pain that make her whole body jump, that occur all times of the day, and are particularly disruptive when asleep. There is currently no relief from the pain, only variations of extremity. Even the most pleasurable of intimate times offers no alleviation to the distressing discomfort.

When the pain brings her to tears, realise that there is nothing left, that she has reached the limit of her endurance, being pounded daily by the various attacks on her physical senses. Realise that the pain has been so severe as to frequently leave her feeling nauseous. Realise that vomiting from the pain is her body’s last resort to expel what currently cannot be removed.

When she says that she has trouble thinking, realise that the pain is so strong that her working memory is functioning at a fraction of normal, and the constant assault on her senses is an underestimated stress. Realise that what she manages to communicate is critical information. Do try to find out more with further questions, for her ability to volunteer information is somewhat limited.

Realise that her emotional struggle is as real as the physical. Realise that many of her normal coping strategies have been taken away, and that her normal physical-mental interplay has been disrupted.

When she speaks honestly about how she feels, it is a big effort, requiring much strength and focus, which is a very tiring process for her. Realise that she has experienced over 20 years of being emotionally smothered. Realise for that time she was conditioned into compliance, criticised, belittled and abused for expressing herself or having a different opinion. Realise that speaking up about herself and for herself is a huge task. Realise how tiring is it to every day push herself beyond the protective shelter of silence that she had created in order to survive most of her adult life.

When she talks about understanding the psychological effects of pain, of reduced function, of limited activity and changed behaviour, realise this is a master instructor  with nearly 30 years experience. Realise this is a teacher at the top of her game, with a professional interest in the psychology of behaviours. Realise this is an educator of the most difficult children in this city, who daily has a positive influence on the future of some of the most disadvantaged children here. When you talk about the psychosomatic influences during this time of dramatic changes in her own life, realise this person intimately understands the territory and must respond daily to assist children and adults experiencing such effects.

Realise that this woman is incredibly strong, having saved herself from an abusive relationship. Realise that this woman had the strength to prevent herself from becoming another statistic of domestic violence. Realise that right now she is coming to you for help, because she needs help. She is relying on you for the best care possible.

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Too Much Like My Dad.

Looking for answers to My health issues. Trying to find anything that might resolve or improve this situation I find my body and mind struggling with.

Then my mental negativity kicked in and made some connections to my father.

I’ve turned 50 this year. I’ve been really struggling with my health for 3 to 4 months before that and again now afterwards (interrupted only by a 3 week holiday from my Wintery home to the tropics).

And I wondered what my Dad’s life was like at this age. He turned 50 a year after I left home, a year and a bit after Mum left with my siblings. So he would have felt his life was a complete mess, he would have been very angry and hurtful/hateful. I know that’s how he was in the little contact I had with him over the next few years. I know he had a new partner to help him out at home (he needed physical assistance with his own damaged body).

So he was nearly 49 when his family left him. They left because he drove them away. His brain damage and physical injuries from a motorbike accident just over 5 years prior left him in a terrible physical and mental state for which he received little support. But he became even more negatively reacting to his family, even more critical and eventually resorted to threatening and actuating physical violence against Mum who was only trying to look after 5 children.

48 (a few months short of 49) when his life crashed apart.

I finally left my marriage aged 48-and-a-bit. I walked away from another relationship aged 49-and-a-bit. I’ve turned 50 and one of the single most significant parts of my life, my job and livelihood, feels like it’s been a mess for more than the past year.

Is that coincidence, is that linked? Maybe it’s nothing and yet maybe it’s something I need to work out – somehow.

Working through this is a big hurt of realisation. It’s an exhausting trawl through dark murky emotions and scary possibilities. I want to find some brightness somewhere, I need to find some hope in all this. I need to know that somehow this will all work out for the better. I’m living off vapours and reserves now that won’t last much longer. I want to move forwards. I want to sort out work life and be excited for possibilities, instead of dreading the entanglements that I’m struggling to sort out.

I don’t know where to start or what to do. Tonight I am scared. But tomorrow I step forwards.

Looking for Less. Longing for More.

This lost feeling
I have no idea who I am anymore
Normal function seems impossible
And it has been impacting me for a year.

There have been stresses
Big, life-changing, emotional, relationship shifts
Thinking I was over the marriage break-up
But that grief and confusion seem to be stronger now more than ever.

And that other relationship
That was good and then not so good
Had to walk away from that one also
Now trying to process all the interpersonal confusion, all the self-blame, and damage that is caused by people who are hurting.

I’m the hurting one now
But I won’t let that effect my relationships
Feeling how much energy it takes to process all this
Left exhausted after physical health clashes with mental health.

I’m sure I used to have some idea
Of what I wanted, and particularly of who I was
All that is up in question
The old ways didn’t work, the new way isn’t new enough.

New ways of living are too much like the old ways
So discomfort creeps in
A wariness, a don’t-let-this-happen-again
Tries to break apart what is new and good for me.

Though the rest of my life feels in turmoil
I have a close relationship that is healthy
More sound than anything before in my entire life
The wonder of two spirits in synchronicity, joining together after crossing paths 29 years ago.

There are many things we do not understand
Why people cause pain
Some intentionally, some unknowingly
Why we choose to be brave at a particular time, and not before.

Unsettled life, unresolved personal conflict
Whether physical or mental, still the same results
We struggle not to completely fall apart
We struggle to survive, to be good, to create happiness

There is no better focus for the energy we have
If we could just thrive a little more than survive
If we could just have the energy, the health,
The freedom from pain to live a relatively normal life.

Is that too much to ask?

Getting Over It?

Relationship grief is tricky

Mourning the loss of what was

Mourning the loss of what might have been

Grieving the pain that became

Coming to terms with your choices,
the decisions that put you there,
for better or for worse.

Responsibility is always shared

Outcomes are the result of reasons

Sometimes beyond our control.

Forgetting is not an option

You are today, because of yesterday

No matter what has been
you always have a choice of what comes next.

Hopefully, we integrate and grow

Our desire to be better,
no matter what was.

And when I can no longer manage
the hurt that still pulls me apart

I hold onto the one solid piece of me

The love that I still give, that still burns brightly.

Digging for Well.

Some days there is no trusting myself

Questioning the reasoning behind my behaviouring

Doubting the truth of my feelings of love

Thinking my relationship needs are met

Only after carefully crafted expression

Because someone in my past accused me of that

Even if that claimant was reacting to their own fears

And knowing that is not my intent

Ever

That I strive for truth and honesty

In all that I seek or do.

Yet I understand there is possibility

That my little cracked heart

Still has some healing to fully restore feeling

To a level of understanding and completeness

That not everyone manages to achieve

So I wonder if

Despite my best efforts

I do love as transparently as I hope

Do I reciprocate as honestly as I believe?

And the awareness of that questioning

The self digging and uncovering undertaken

Reassures me that I am doing the best I can

Within these moments certainty answers back

“You are doing well”.

Perhaps us.

Perhaps my higher self chose you.

Perhaps part of me saw a need that I could fulfill and for reasons chose to be there for you.

Perhaps I’ve been doing this with many relationships in my life so far.

Perhaps this is who I am.

Perhaps I will continue this behaviour, if it is who I genuinely am.

Perhaps I will change.

Perhaps my current energy aligned with yours and bonded together.

Perhaps you are able to fully reciprocate my energy, my needs.

Perhaps you are here, now, to help me heal – just as I am for you.

Perhaps this is one way that people connect.

Perhaps this is one way people have a mutually healthy relationship.

Perhaps this is why this US feels so comfortable, so easy.

Perhaps focusing on the positives we have for each other is a great way forwards.

Perhaps right now, I believe all this to be true.

Heavy as a Day.

Longing for belonging
Instead feeling outside
Without real reason; as
Intrusive fears drag me away
From all who I love
From all that I love
Feeling the pain of separation
Fearing something unreal
Lost in a negativity storm
Comfortably surrounded by
white noise and aloneness
Whilst my brain screams
for all the opposites
That I need and want.

.

.

.

Simple fulfillment
is all that I desire.

On Pets Past, and Grief.

I saw the spot this morning, where Mr.Poppy’s litter tray always sat, where he would frequently be seen sitting, or cleaning. It’s now a place for a shopping basket and garden shoes.

I felt the pain of loss immediately, just as I feel it again writing this. The pain of loss and grief.

And thinking about Nigella’s future, about palliative care for her, exacerbates the experience.

Grief will pass.
Memories are important to keep alive.

I spent a lot of time with and around Nigella this morning. More thorough cleaning up than normal. I wanted to be around her space, wanted to connect with her as I’m not often around the house any more.

Connection heightens the thoughts of mortality and endings.

And while the pain hurts, it is a good thing to remember.

Pets as family.

The time you spend with them each day, loving, caring, and connecting. Particularly when the pet is a mammal, is an intelligent personality who seeks you out at times. It’s a very human thing, to care for animals, to seek solace in their company, and in their simple child-like understanding.

And so they are remembered, as they were our children. They were who we had together. They are reminders of happy times, of life together. They are meaning and love, as we were.

All things pass, in time.

Are the most precious memories, of those we cared for, of those we held as their life slipped away? For we carried them through their life, held them at the end, and cried together. We will soon cry together again, for one more time. Only once more.

Bittersweet memories.

May we always hold onto the joy that there was, the adventure, the fun and connection. This is all that makes us human.

Energy Perspective Shifts.

Attracting the energy of the mood I’m in
Leads to confusion during disparate times
Between outright positive and subtly negative phases.

Feeling sorry for myself;
Links me to people who will feel sorry for me
And yet that is not what I really need.

Empathy and sympathy are part of care
There are other energies that benefit me more;
Positive understanding, with hope and optimism,
Will shift perspective to my benefit.

The Horizon of Desire.

My desires feed a deep place inside
Not dark, for this shall be revealed with those who choose to ask, those who choose the closeness

Hunger grows and searches for equally matched desire
There is no boundary between physical and mental intimacy
I simply crave the deepest sharing and connection
And the decision to partake is valid only for the space the energy occupies

While relationships constantly change, acknowledgement and respect remain the vanguard of this new reality

My responsibility is to be better than we’ve ever been before
To set an example of the best a human can be

Deciding on true equality, true out-in-the-open honesty and integrity
This is to what I give my consent.

.

[ inspired by the words of Laurie Penny. ]