Sunday, October 3, 2004

Calling Change into My Life

I I have been suffering from a bout of writer's block, because I have been struggling a lot lately, with depression and anxiety and feeling stuck. I know I am not stuck. The river is flowing no matter what I do, and I am part of that river as surely as I breathe air. I just have hit another rocky run.

Nothing has changed. The pain, which has become a background to all I do, waxes and wanes according some arcane pattern or rhythm to which I have no access. Oh, I know weather affects me, and how active I am, and how depressed I feel, but there is something deeper that I cannot put my finger on. Yet.

I was overwhelmed with the number of people who responded to my 2nd 7.5 minutes of fame, with comments and e-mails and IM's, many of them with promises of prayers and suggestions I will discuss with my doctor. I was also overwhelmed at the number of people struggling with chronic illnesses, and the amount of pain, physical and emotional, they suffer.

I am a lucky one. My pain is fairly well medicated, and I am capable of going back to doctors over and over again, until I get a diagnosis and what ever treatment is available. I have done this before. At the moment, I have enough money to live on, and health insurance. I have a partner who loves me, a house I love, and a daughter who is funny and quirky and self-supporting. I know how blessed I am, and I am grateful to the Goddess in her many forms for all this. Truly. So why am I crying all the time?

One comment (and only one) accused me, among other things, of hating my body and having a pity party. I John Scalzi'ed it, (that is, erased it and blocked her) and told myself she had no power in my life, but it still rankled. I hate that one comment can make me feel guilty, go through a cycle of self-doubt. I am over it now, but it took a while, and I am more aware of the perils of public journaling.

But the crying is not self pity. For me crying is a good thing. It took me years in therapy to get beyond cramming all emotions down, deep inside, never to be looked at or acknowledged. It is a childhood survival mechanism that is no longer needed in my life. I now need to be able to cry the emotional pain out. And so I do, in safe places-like my car, my recliner, my bedroom, and at my computer.

And believe me, I am crying at the drop of a hat. Beautiful song? I cry. Weather changing? I cry. Loving journal entry or comment? I cry. Rene snaps at me? I cry. Therapy session? I sob. Leaves falling? I cry. Need to buy sweatshirts for winter? I cry. See a pattern here? I don't, not quite. Roxy loves it, though; she has taken on the job of washing my face of tears and (less endearingly) snot. She makes me laugh, and then I cry some more.

I can see that it has to do with lost hope. This time last year I was in terrible, terrible pain, my right hand lifeless, my right shoulder immobile, living 24/7 in my recliner, needing help to take a shower, but I expected to rehab and go back to work. That kept me going to physical therapy 3 times a week for 9 months. It kept me going to a personal trainer, on a diet, going to literally dozens of doctor's appointments, all with a smile plastered firmly on my face, and the cheery response of "I've been much worse in the past!" on my lips whenever I was asked how I was doing. Ugh. I HAVE been much worse. I AM much better, just not well enough to claim my old life, and not far enough along to see my new one.

I know that losing hope for one kind of life does not mean I am giving up. I am mourning, and will continue to mourn, even while new hope begins to grow inside me. I will have a new life. It is clear that change does not come easily to me, and that it frightens me, too. But I see a little more clearly now that when I started this journal, I was calling change into my life. What was I thinking? Truth is, I wasn't thinking. On some unconscious level I was setting up a framework in a community called J-Land to facilitate change, however slow and painful. This is not the only community in which I work on change, but I am so grateful to be here, and feel the support many of you offer.

I have put a picture of Roxy and me up, so that you will all know that I DO smile now and then!  :)

Blessings, Margo


ksquester said...

I love this entry and I love your picture. I did a journal entry on crying just a while ago....interesting.(Pour me Another Cup of WHINE-- at the end of Aug.) I think you have hit the nail on the head with crying out the emotional pain. I didn't cry as a child but I am JUST now starting to. As for that KOOK who said those stupid things in the comment section.....glad you blocked her. YOU are a survivor and you are able to work through pain and help others by journaling. Thanks Margo. Hugs to you and the new pup.     Anne

jadzia7667 said...

I love your pic :)  We look a bit alike around the eyes.  I agree, crying is necessary to release emotional pain.  I think you're an amazing person, and I'm proud to know you, and so glad you commented in my journal :)

ancidkb47 said...

i feel for ya margo, debra

luckyaugustgirl said...

Hi Margo! I didnt know you had little roxy! We have two chihuahuas in our family.... they are brother and sister, max and mocha..... The boys got them for Christmas last year and they are a combined 10 pounds of pure joy just as your little Roxy is..... So glad to see a fellow chihuahua lover out there. Isnt it nice what comfort our pets can bring...... :) THanks for the comment! Steve has read it and thinks that im just around to tease and torture him:) Glad hes finally figuring it out:)  Im kidding..... Hope you feel better soon..... :)

dizzydyke18 said...

Don't let what one perosn says bother you... I'm not a big cryer I hardly ever cry.. I fight it and fight it but lately wiht all the stress of my back pain and fighting for disability I cry at stupid stuff... I still try to fight it (guess it's a butch thing) but sometimes you can't help it... And even though your pain is medicated sometimes trying to deal with the fact that you will never be the same person as you were before everything happened is really hard.... I'm still trying to deal with the fact that I will never be able to do the things I did last summer... Keep your chin up..

ryanagi said...

I totally get the crying all the time jag. I feel like a brittle twig lately. The lightest breeze and I just snap. I've been crying at everything. I think I need to be medicated. In my case, I think it's part emotional, but mostly hormonal. Such a mess... I hope things improve for you (and me) soon. :-) -B

jeanno43 said...

You know Margo, those words could have been mine. I go through exactly the same things, but then you already know that. Thank you for this entry and what a lovely picture of yourself and dear little Roxy. Yes, you do smile and it made me smile as well. God bless you xxxxxxx

donah42 said...

I actually kind of envy your ability to cry! I wish I could cry more---it's such a great release! I wish you the best in this journey you are on. I don't deal well with change either...that's been a constant struggle in my life, so I can relate to your emotions. I'm glad you discovered this outlet for your thoughts and emotions, and this wonderful community of J-Land. For every thorn here, there are hundreds of roses!

judithheartsong said...

Lovely Margo! You are amazing and a lovely gift to so many.... especially to me! judi

judithheartsong said...

I had to come back again........ you are a help to ME! judi

indigosunmoon said...

Honey...I go through periods of time like this myself.
Feeling worthless...feeling terrible because I can't work
right now and I see my darling Scarlett busting her ass
every day.  I am truly blessed, as you are.  There is
nothing in this world like having someone who loves
and adores you.  You have support here my new
friend.  And what an adorable picture of you and Roxy!
Much love,

ikoiko33 said...

Having a good cry is HEALTHY!! It is normal!!

For a while, it seemed that EVERYTHING would set me off ... I am still working thru the loss of my uncle. His sons, my twin eight year old cousins, are trying very hard to be brave about it. One of them is having an especially difficult time with things. While babysitting them, he came across an old photo album of mine, and he stopped to look at some pictures of his dad. He got this look on his face, like he wanted to cry, but he held it back. I sat beside him, gave him a big hug, and said, "You know honey, it's okay to be sad."
It's when you DON'T cry, and bottle everything in that there is a problem.


cneinhorn said...

Oh, I cry for the littlest things and the biggest things, for everything.  I think it's better to let it all out, than bottle it in!  Don't let one negative comment upset you, I like the Scalzi method, erase, block and then forget about it!



poetmom1968 said...

So somebody came and crapped in your yard?(That's what I say when someone leaves a negative comment in "your" journal)  I see that some people don't get the gist of a journal.  And some people haven't learned the fine art of respecting others and if you don't like what's in a journal, move on.  I think it's great you vent and put what's happening to you in your journal.  I think it's healing to journal about hard times.  Good for you in blocking this person. :)

realitycheckmco said...

Thanks for visiting my little world. I am enjoying yours and I will continue to visit. I am sorry that you had to block anyone for a negative comment.. I just love how there are some out there who love to cause misery for people just because their own lives are so empty. See, no one has yet to come to my journal and attempt that sort of stuff with me.. I scare them.. they know I bite..

slowmotionlife said...

I think it's so easy for people who have never been through it to just say "ignore" those who leave you hurtful comments.  The point is, they're hurtful.  That's their purpose and the commenter's intent.  And no amount of logic can combat that sometimes.  I KNOW.  But it passes.  And you're loved and supported here - that's apparent by the number of comments I've seen from people who really do CARE about you.  They matter more.  Always remember that.  :)

A good cry can do wonders for the soul.  I honestly believe that those who cry easily also know how to smile easily.  And your smile, Margo, is beautiful.....  ::hugs::

annalisa135 said...

I understand all about mourning, although you and I are mourning different things right now.  The pain and loss is the same when it comes down to it.  I've heard it said over and over again, "This too shall pass".  It sounds like such a cold phrase.  When people said it to me recently, it made me feel like they were minimizing my pain.  Mainly because I don't want to leave go of what I lost.  Unfortunately, sometimes those things just can't be regained no matter what, and as a result, reality (as difficult as it is) sets in.  Need to keep moving forward.  Hoping that just around the next bend is something wonderful.  At least that's what I'm trying to do.  I'll be praying for you Margo.  Please take care of you.  Much love and Hugs!!!