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October 28, 2013 / Ang

Rough Patches

I posted a while back about how I have some trust issues and wished that I could change that. And I posted about it because they were on my mind because I had a thing for a friend that I was getting closer with. I talked to him about it, he told me not to worry, and it turns out that I shouldn’t have listened. Trust issues are worthwhile sometimes I guess. I was really hurting for a while and I really want to get past it. It just sucks losing someone who acts in a significant other-like capacity and your friend friend in one failed swoop. (I’m not sure if that’s one of those random phrases that gets used wrong and I don’t care enough to look further into it right now.)

When you’re really hurting it’s hard to bring yourself to do things like write to the world about your life. I didn’t feel as though I really had anything TO write about. But I managed to develop a friendship of mine better (I have a female friend!), and I’ve been pretty busy or easily distracted lately anyway. I’ve been attempting to keep busy but I think instead I’m either sleeping or half out of it sometimes.

I think part of it is that I feel like I’m in a bit of a dark place with my chronic illnesses right now. I try to keep my head up, but lately I’m exceptionally bitter about everything. There is really no other way to put it than I am PISSED OFF sometimes. And sometimes, anger can be a great thing. It can be the motivation that you need to get past someone and realize that you deserved way better than you were given. But being angry about something you can’t change is such a waste. It does nothing but put you in a dark place and make it difficult to feel “normal” because there’s a part of you that’s just dwelling in bitterness about everything going on. I don’t want that to be who I am or keep sharing terrible, angry, or sad posts and let people think that that’s who I am. It’s scary because it feels almost like it’s who I’m becoming, though. I don’t want this to change me, but it seems almost inevitable that it does when it changes so much of my life.

So here’s how it went: I signed up for this study through Vanderbilt to help a psychology student out. She wanted us to write about our deepest feelings regarding Irritable Bowel and how it has affected our lives, the diagnosis process, relationships, etc. I had to write for half an hour at a stretch. I think before this study it was relatively easy to just push the feelings aside. But when you have to sit at your laptop and dwell on your deepest feelings (which tend to be sad, angry, or embarrassed because those are the feelings you push down rather than the acceptance you force yourself to feel because it’s hard to change life) those feelings come up. Letting those feelings that I thought I had pushed away for the most part boil to the surface was the beginning of the dark stretch I think. I started allowing myself to feel angry about how unfair it is for me to be so sick even when I try so hard not to be, I allowed myself to be sad that it feels as though I’ve never really had a chance at being normal, and those feelings just kept coming up – especially while writing about it on a weekly basis. I never really had a chance to just get past them again.

Those feelings started coming up about being sick in general. It seemed really unfair that I asked for help with my restriction issues and instead of life getting better it just got worse. I started to really get frustrated that I’ve always been an incredibly active person, intelligent, and an overachieving perfectionist – and that life was essentially taken away from me. I don’t know who I am anymore sometimes, honestly. I used to be this studious girl – I consider myself an academic. In a way it’s still true, I get these crazy ideas for research projects that I could never really pull off. But at the same time I don’t feel smart anymore – I struggle with remembering basic math while helping my students sometimes, I struggle with language I used to be nearly fluent in, and I just lose focus so easily that I can’t even keep up with the free online classes I tried to take (which was partially because the class wasn’t recognizing that I completed phases of it and that frustrated me I admit). It’s like I’ve lost motivation, though. I was going to the gym almost every day and putting so much time in, and even going to yoga classes too, but I was always feeling symptomatic. Things that should be easy for me like standing for a while in a yoga class had my knees shaking which just struck me as crazy. I’m obviously decently strong, and I wasn’t deconditioned, but doing the basics of maintenance had me feeling weak, and that made me angry.

There is so much that I want to do with my life. I want to get back to school (currently not happening thanks to doctors), I want to have a career, and I want to be independent. I’m ashamed of myself for being 22 and living with and off of my parents. I want to be a productive member of society. I want to be able to go out on a date with a boy and not explain that I’ve always hated gore but with these new developments it needs to be avoided and not just for the sake of my pride. I really want to be “normal,” not have to explain that I have some health stuff going on (and tell the story) but I don’t want it to define me when the boy asks for more information. Although it was kind of cute that he wanted to check out my heart rate because he hadn’t felt something like that before. I give the boy credit.

I’m a little fed up that my health is getting in the way of me being myself, or continuing to ignore the terrible feelings and just be positive sometimes, and that it’s definitely in the way of my accomplishing my goals. I can’t wait for life to straighten itself out. I’m trying to hurry that along but apparently that’s not quite something that can be accomplished on my own. “In five to six years you may be completely over this. But the short term prognosis is frustrating.” Okay, great, but I WANT the short term prognosis to fix itself and fast. I can’t keep up with this.

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One Comment

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  1. Ashlee Mae / Oct 31 2013 12:41 pm

    I think it’s good that you’re angry and in a dark place right now. It’s something that you have to go through, because you are dealing with a shitty hand. But once you get through the anger, you should be better off at handling it and realizing all the silver linings that there are. So even if this is your new norm, it’s not an impossible one.

    Mind you, since I’m going through much of the same bitterness and anger, all that I said above is more from hope than from actual experience 😛 We really should find a way to make yoga a routine thing somehow. I know that it has helped to give me at least one thing that I’m really good at (I guess this would be one of those silver linings! Insight! 😀 ).

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