Almost there 

It’s the day after the wedding. My husband and I stole away to a hotel somewhere beautiful for a night and are resting. We are exhausted. Tomorrow I booked us couple massages. 

I am having dinner by myself in a restaurant. My husband wanted pizza and I can’t eat out easily due to allergies. I never used to be able to eat alone, worried about how people would perceive me or what it looked like or “look at that poor sad girl with her phone eating alone.” Look at me now. A plate of salmon, a glass of wine, and WordPress out on my cell phone. 

The wedding was beautiful, it was magic and honestly I’m so glad it happened. It was amazing. And actually kind of perfect – I have received so many compliments about it being “the best wedding” people have ever attended. But it was hectic and emotional – so much emotion – and after photos I got really overwhelmed and had to take a break by myself. I’m proud though, I told everyone to leave me alone for a bit except my maid of honour and advocated for my need to have some time. I’m about to get a bit TMI but I really had to go to the bathroom and didn’t want anyone coming with me, so I stripped out of my dress and wandered around my locked bridal suite naked for a bit – it was helpful. 

I’ve been going non-stop since Thursday morning, and I feel like I’m losing my footing a bit. So it’s kind of nice to sit here and eat alone. The space is nice. Not to mention the alone time. 

I haven’t slept well for the past few nights. I’m hoping for a really nice long sleep tonight. There’s something about being in this constantly triggered state that’s exhausting – and even though I loved yesterday and it was the wedding of my dreams, I can’t help but feel it was dulled a little – like I didn’t get the full experience.

On Thursday night I went to bed at 11p after the rehearsal dinner. I woke up multiple times because I was sharing the room with my maid of honour, who has an insulin pump that beeps consistently when she is low – I know this, didn’t expect it to wake me up. It hasn’t before.

That’s when I wrote the last post. And I felt activated and angry and I emailed and I cancelled with A. I have since realized part of me wanted her to write back and try to convince me to show up. I wanted her to say “PD, why are you cancelling? What’s going on? Are you okay? Tell me about how you are?” I wanted to feel that care. 

And she emailed back very quickly, I got it the next time I woke up from a dream (which was 2am, and my bridesmaids were arriving at 6:30a). And this is what it said:

“I’ve received your message. I look forward to seeing you on Thursday.

Safe flight home next week.”

And I immediately felt activated. It was 2am, I wasn’t coping, and this is the first time I had felt anything in days… and it was disappointment and maybe anger. I wanted to be cared for genuinely by an adult figure – someone who sees me for me. I wanted her to fight for my attention. To fight to get me to show up – which isn’t her job. She performed her job, allowing me to cancel and saying she looked forward to seeing me. But it wasn’t enough for me. I knew that that reaction was over the top and very much from my attachment issues, and compounded from where I was and the stress – so I knew it was unrealistic but it didn’t stop me from wanting her to fill that gap I’m supposed to fill for myself. 

I needed to sleep if I was going to get through my wedding day, so I listened to her recording of The Guest House. And that opened up the tiniest crack in my armour. And then I wanted to talk to her even more. So I sent this: 

“A,

If I sent that in a moment of weakness is there a way to undo it? I realize the back and forth isn’t ideal or fair but as soon as I sent it I regretted cancelling. I think I’m just really out of touch with myself and what I need right now… I won’t go into details but had a brief panic this morning when I realized we wouldn’t be talking. 

I promise to not cancel it again, if perhaps you’re okay with reinstating our phone call? Let me know, and I apologize for the inconsistency. I realize that it is unfair.

PD”

She responded with “no worries at all. Let’s talk <date and time>.” Which I didn’t get until yesterday during my brief wedding panic. 

Until I listened to her voice I was completely disconnected. The only emotion I was feeling was dread or panic, and then I managed to connect – briefly – and it got better.

The wedding was amazing… and also lucrative! I loved it. But I can’t help but feel I was a bit separated from it because I haven’t been able to deal with being here. And maybe that’s how all my experiences have been. A bit out of touch, like I’m running in black and white while everything else has been in technicolor. 

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15 thoughts on “Almost there 

  1. Congratulations PD! I’m glad it was such a beautiful wedding. 🙂

    “A bit out of touch, like I’m running in black and white while everything else has been in technicolor.” I completely get this. ❤

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  2. Congratulations! 💟 I was so glad to hear you allowed yourself a break— that is really good self care! I was glad to see that you were happy and okay, if a bit out of touch. I call that the blurry feeling. For me, that blurry feeling means I’m not processing anything because I’m not present enough to do so. If that’s the same for you right now, it’s okay, and not surprising. You’ve had a really intense month. I hope when you get back to your home, you can breathe and find some calm. 💟

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  3. So glad to hear it went well! And that you took a little time to yourself. I imagine there is and will be a lot to process, particularly after you return home to the west coast (will be glad to have you back over here : ) )
    I’m glad you asked for the call back, I understand why you cancelled. It is something I’ve done at least 50 times (I’m not kidding) in the past 15+ months with my therapist. I get it, you were afraid, unsure how to feel better or cope. No shame in that, PD. xx

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  4. I’m very glad the wedding went well! Congrats!! I’m glad you also advocated for some time alone.
    I know it’s been hard, but you’re handling this so well. Asking A to reinstate the call was a great move, I thought. You advocated for something, a call, in order to help you, and that’s great. You’re doing so well. I hope you get some sleep and that you enjoy the massage ❤

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  5. First off, congrats on the wedding!!! So glad to hear that you took time out for yourself both after the pictures and at your meal alone in the restaurant. It sounds like you are trying hard to take care of yourself the best you can. It must seem so hard to be part of what is certainly a happy time, and yet be on edge and guarded inside because of so much past hurt and trauma. Not knowing A and/or you but having read a great deal of your story, I wonder if maybe she felt you cancelled the phone call only because you were so busy with post-wedding bliss. It sounds like she remains happy to accommodate you once you sent your second post. We understand the struggle for needing that connection from your T who is outside of your family and yet able to provide all of you that safe space to share some deep emotion and regroup. We are hoping u have a great couples massage, a healing phone call with A and a wonderful rest of your honeymoon with you husband. Take good care of you PD.

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  6. I’m so glad the wedding went well and that you will have a special memory to look back on. Please take it easy for the next little while if you can – even without all that’s being going on for you, it’s common to have a big crash after focussing all your energy on that one big day and then … it’s over.

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  7. Congrats on the wedding! So happy for you PD. 🙂

    On the other hand, I’m also a bit concerned about your well-being. Like I can’t help but think/wonder if you’re almost dependent on A and whether the relationship between you two is truly therapeutic or not. Obviously, only you have the actual answers, but I thought to put this out there just out of genuine concern.

    Anyways, it seems like you’ve made some progress, so way to go! 😉

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    • I appreciate the concern but it actually made me defensive and judged at the same time, if I’m being honest. I don’t ever usually reach out or call or talk to A outside of sessions, and I am currently physically visiting a place that is incredibly difficult for me. I’m not sure I would call it dependent when I have a moment where I really wish I could speak with someone who truly understands and knows the story amidst the chaos. Maybe my writing didn’t reflect that properly, but considering outside of 1.5 hours a week I don’t usually email, phone or think about my counsellor…

      Additionally, this therapeutic relationship I have has been the most healing of them all. I have made more progress and come further in the last 5 months than ever before. So while I appreciate the concern and trust it’s coming from a good place I encourage you to remember that what I choose to share here is only a piece of my life, and that you really don’t know me or my circumstances at all.

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      • Yea, you’re right PD. Sorry if I made you feel judged or uncomfortable. It’s likely that I may have misinterpreted the facts and projected my own experiences into my previous comment(s). It was inappropriate and I’ll be more careful/considerate next time.

        Wish you all the best.

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      • Thanks Psy – I know your comments came from the right place – and I just re-read it and realized where I DO sound like I am in need of A and nothing else will fix it – when in reality it was me noticing that. No harm done, and I thank you for this comment. Xx

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    • I think that for people who aren’t involved in intensive, attachment-style therapy, the therapeutic relationship and dynamics seem “dependent” or “not therapeutic.” I can assure you, that PD’s attachment and dynamics with A are exceptionally therapeutic for the work she is wanting to do in therapy. It is healthy and vital for healing for people with complex trauma and particularly young, developmental trauma, to learn it is okay to express needs, feelings, etc.

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