False Start

false

I would like to mark Monday as the first day of my weekend as technically it is one of my few days off. The reason why I want to do this, is because if this is the start of my week and the thing that is supposed to set the president for the week to come, I am in a lot of trouble.

Thanks to recovery, I have been totally unaffected by the goings on of a typical blue Monday. The plan was to leave the house after straightening my hair to take a walk and buy a printer cable at the same time. Something shorted in my GHD and I was left with the thing continuously switching on and off, but not generating enough heat to solve my now fluffy, freshly blow dried hair. My friend called in tears and I had to try and help her organise some support without trying to codependently swoop in and save the day. This left me having disjointed calls with my action buddy, because I had to speak to the CATT team.

I had some lunch and finally made my way down to the print shop to buy a printer cable. I walked 4km (which I loved), to get to the print store, to find out the only did printing. I got sent down a further km to a newsagent, where the lady behind the counter proceeded to tell me where she thought the printer cable may have gotten to and asked me why the printer didn’t have a cable.. Neither of which actually helped me solve my problem. Disheartened and really pretty deflated, I walked back up and chatted to my mom on the phone. She didn’t sound convinced about the whole making money off of a blog thing. To be honest, I’m not even sure how you would sell advertising space on a recovery blog, but any potential ideas I had were very swiftly crushed in that conversation. Her lack of enthusiasm was apparent.

It was really good to catch up with her though and while I had her on the phone, I walked past a little Chinese store. He had printer cables and even though I couldn’t get my GHD repaired, at least I walked out with a solution to my printing problems. I got home and plugged the printer in and there is no driver for a mac hahaha!

I feel a little defeated, but what a gift, that I got to experience a few brick walls today and just calmly navigate my way through it. I am grateful and tomorrow is a new day ๐Ÿ™‚

A bit of a Conundrum

help

I am not sure I carry much hope today, but the one thing this blog has given me the opportunity to do is, express myself honestly, regardless of how uplifting the content is.

Yesterday was quite an incredible day. I woke up and went to a yoga class, which I am absolutely paying for today (it BREAKS me!) I then proceeded to give 3 pilates classes to friends of my housemate, my housemate and one of my good friends. It was fun to be teaching again and we turned the back sunroom into a little studio, which really feels amazing! The place feels like home to me, so much so that I even saved it in my phone GPS as “home”.

Teaching pilates is really an interesting indicator for me. My abandonment issues come up in the first class. There is a huge fear that you wont love me and then leave me, so if it is a person’s first class with me, I end up teaching overwhelmed with fear and anxiety. Once the initial ice has broken and they come back for a second class, all of those feelings dissolve as I settle into a rhythm. It’s profound the difference between the two classes. It’s ‘strangely’ similar to my love relationships, the way it starts. Then when I know they are hooked, I settle into my power. I’d say I have a few control issues ๐Ÿ™‚

After my incredibly holistic day, I went to a GLBTIQ meeting. I was the only woman there, but I really enjoyed it. The stories of how people’s drinking had lead them into the rooms, were astounding and triggered a bucket load of memories for me. The stuff that really came up was the money drunkenness. I used to go out with a pocket full of cash and spend only 10% of it on myself (I used to do controlled drinking. I drank 3x stroh ’80’ shooters, each washed down with a smirnoff ice, over the course of the night) – this way I had more money to spend on my friends and essentially ‘buy’ their love. If I bought them enough drinks and gave them enough of a great party, maybe they would love me more and wouldn’t leave me – Are you starting to notice a little theme running here? Iย am desperate for love and then when I have it, I am so afraid it will leave me, I will do anything to hold onto it.

Last night at midnight I got a call from a very close friend. She was really struggling to cope and after spending an hour with her on the phone, I went over there, because I was worried sick. This is a friend I have had intrigue with in the past, but have managed to maintain the friendship regardless and have done a heap of work around it. I sat with her until she fell asleep and then I fell asleep… in the same bed…. Big mistake for me! – That is simply an internal boundary I shouldn’t be breaking.

I felt really weird when I woke up and I did my best to exit the situation and just pull myself right. I did a few reach out calls and really got mixed reviews, which is hardly surprising, because as an outsider looking in (if I were to switch roles that is), I would be judging the hell of the person telling me the same story… sounds pretty slippery!

I felt ok about the whole thing until I spoke to my sponsor, then it came down on me hard, like a ton of bricks. She got quite angry with me, which sent me over the edge a bit. The weird thing is that the moment someone gets angry with me, I get compassion with them and this became totally apparent to me. She started to tell me how slippery my behaviour actually was and there was no tone adjustment to soften the blow. It hurt, I cried, disgusted with myself and even more ashamed than when I had woken up. Her question to me was, what makes me think I am qualified to deal with something like that? Shouldn’t she be seeking the help of a professional? And how could I put myself in such a vulnerable position, with someone else who is so vulnerable?… I couldn’t answer any of her questions – I know I was in the wrong, I made a mistake, I made a really bad decision at 1am and had no excuses for it. She softened after I think she heard my shaky voice over the phone and it sounded to me like she was going through some stuff too, she was only getting angry, because she cares <– there’s that compassion!

Maybe her approach was a bit harsh, but she made a good point none the less. My feelings of helplessness surfaced and the trauma bond became very apparent. When I was young, my dad passed away with leukaemia. He called two nights before he died, but I was asleep. I woke up to take the call, but I was half asleep. Sure I would speak to him again, we wrapped up the conversation pretty quickly. I told him that I loved him and that I couldn’t wait to see him in December… I called him the next night, with the hopes of resuming the conversation. He answered, but he had a fever and couldn’t talk… He died of kidney failure the next morning… It hurts the same today as it did back then.

So that was the trauma coming up for me last night. I have cried about it. I did a good meditation around it. As for my actions, now I have spoken to my therapist, who reassured me. She said she knows that I would not cross that boundary with my friend and deep down inside I know it too. That is why I tried to talk to her for an hour on the phone first, I was doing some huge questioning around my intentions. I didn’t know who else to call at 2am, but have taken active steps to live in the solution today and find out what I can do in future in the same situation.

The shame has softened thank God! Was it perfect? No! But what about this recovery thing ever is? It was human, I was honest and accountable. I did the best I knew how to do given the circumstances. I may not be a mental health professional, but I have done my first aid for mental health and seen some pretty dark stuff in my life… I believed I helped, just a little bit and I couldn’t find it in my heart to turn my back on my best friend.

 

I spoke too soon!

awe.png

I knew this was going to happen. Here I am strutting my feathers like a male peacock, after going 7 full days without sexualising anything. I felt invincible, I think I may have even started to tell people how they should work their program. I started to think, hey!… Maybe I got this thing!… Hahaha <—- Cunning, baffling and powerful, this disease is! I had an idea it was coming, but in true addict fashion, I ignored the warning signs.

I have made friends with this woman, who has just gotten out of a toxic relationship (and needs rescuing- and it just so happens that I like to be the rescuer ๐Ÿ˜‰ that whole knight on a white horse type thing) – The one plus point I get, is that she is gay, so I was thinking progress, not perfection, right?… That is actually my addict brain, trying to con me into believing that this might be a good idea, because at least she is available… Broken, but available – definite marriage material ๐Ÿ˜‰ hahaha, bloody hell! What am I like?!?

I have seen this coming, but of course I wait for a sure sign and when I got that today, I am baffled as to why it even surprised me. She is new to the sex and love fellowship and when you are new, if you are anything like I was at the start, boundaries were drawn in sand with the rising tide. No sooner after you’ve drawn them, have they disappeared into the vast ocean, like a distant memory – hahaha and your boundaries… Well… Those were just challenges for my amazing seductive talent – I was truly a hopeless case!

Today I am grateful to say, through working my program and following the suggestions, that I have been able to hold boundaries and keep myself safe, but it’s those dam shiny things again! I get one sniff of this girl expressing some kind of attraction for me and I loose my car in the shopping centre parking. I think I can honestly say that it has been totally disorientating and the worst thing, is that she is really not my type (ok I don’t really have a type, but I definitely have a “not-my-type” and she is it)

So that’s my vibe. I called my sponsor right away and fes up to everything, before anything comes of this. My sponsor told me that a light has gone on in me, as a result of my sustained sobriety and recovery and that it will be very attractive. I need to be careful and also understand that my understanding is greater than this woman’s understanding and that it is my responsibility not to take advantage of a vulnerable person… I agree with her, but I have to be honest, that my mind did go there, This post is in the spirit of bringing the truth into the light, because this disease lives in the dark. I am human and I can’t control my first thought, but I can most certainly control what I do about it and acting on it will cause harm to me and to her.

All I can do is pray for the strength and for God’s will & not my own.

Are you syncing what I’m syncing?

hormones

Ok either the toothpaste or the prayer worked, because my spots did get substantially smaller ๐Ÿ™‚

I am rather exhausted and proud of myself that I have gotten to 10pm, when I didn’t even want to get out of bed this morning. Yesterday’s dense energy had really put a spanner in the works in my forward momentum. That paired with a sugar hangover and hormones???… 2 weeks early??? That’s what I get for living in a house full of women! I’ve just synced to one of their cycles – does this mean that was the total pms crazy? Because that was more like pms vanilla, I didn’t get angry about one thing, I just ate a lot of chocolate – Hahaha, Whoo Hoo!!! – And I have the answer to why I was strutting a pizza face ๐Ÿ™‚

I am like a crazy gorilla on hormones. I have resigned, moved houses… twice. If there is anger to come out, that is the week of the month it comes out to do it’s training and boy does it come out with a vengeance, so if that was it – I’ll just brush it off like fluff on my shoulder. I guess it is really a sign that I am in the right place in my life. Today I got to help a friend. went to uni, started a coffee club (the day after I quit – typical), then did a shop for a pad thai I was going to try and cook for my clients. I got to work and she was waiting for me, ready and keen to go to gym, so off we went. We had an amazing session, my body was still broken from the double burner or yoga and running yesterday. I loved it though, so did she, which makes my job so fulfilling. We got home and the pad thai turned out amazing.

Right now I am struggling to keep my eyes open. All I wanted to do was to express my gratitude. My life is just wonderful and it keeps getting better. I am one of the lucky ones who survived a full on active drug addiction and today I live to tell the tale. That we do recover… It’s a miracle!

 

 

Strangely Amazing

s

A bit of a strange day today. Firstly I couldn’t pry myself out of bed to do volunteer work. I was dealing with day 2 of coffee withdrawal and it simply overwhelmed me. My housemates words,”You should try cut down slowly, it’s a lot more loving towards yourself.” really resonated with me and I made a valiant attempt to reverse the withdrawal, by having 2 cups, it was a little late for that, but I feel like I handled life a little better after. The headache was still there, but it was more manageable.

I went to work (2nd last day – if not the last, because I really don’t think it is loving at all to force myself to go to a job that just really no longer serves me – all I am doing with it is living up to my underearning potential) – Then binge eating afterwards, because I need to fill the empty space inside with m&m hazelnut chocolate slabs, which has my face broken out into spots, like some hormonal teenager. So I used this opportunity to get in touch with my teenage roots and as I lie here typing this, I have toothpaste on my face hahaha… Maybe if I “Act as If”, it will work (I might just pray and see what happens, just to really freak myself out)

I pulled over at the fuel station to buy my chocolate and I bumped into my drug program sponsor… She pops up in the most random places, it is so weird. I think we are connected on some soul level, because in the whole of Melbourne, I have never bumped into anyone, but I have bumped into her 4 times now in random places… No need to call, she’ll just pop up when I need her ๐Ÿ™‚ – Funny one God!

I got home from my the job that drains the life force out of me and decided to go for a run, because after driving, wolfing down chocolate and having fantasies about dancing with women at parties and being able to moon walk and sweep girls off their feet. I thought it was best to do some exercise to get myself back into my body and burn off that darn m&m slab. – I was definitely trying to escape my reality on the drive home. It would be self harm to go back to that job. I am thoroughly convinced. Last week it was Macca’s and a slab on the way home, the rest of the week diet is no problem for me.

I did a 3km walk and a 3km run and when I got home my housemate invited me to yoga. With time to kill before a meeting. I thought, “why not?”… This is a huge step for me, because I am a hider and doing things like this with people I know would mean I allow them to see me and yoga is much like the zumba thing for me. I give 150% effort, I try everything that the beautiful swan of an instructor is doing in front of me. While gracefully resembling a goose with a few physical ailments and crooked neck. Fully aware, that I just don’t move that way. The class was amazing none the less and I enjoyed every minute of it. I’m a big fan and will certainly be going back!

I dashed off after the yoga class to a meeting for the money fellowship. I agreed to open the meeting, because the fellowship here is so small. The only other person was a friend of mine at her first meeting. It was pretty freaking hilarious having a 2 woman meeting between friends. Trying to stay focused and serious, following a meeting format, but neither one of us really knew what we were doing. One of the tools – “Do not debt, one day at a time” – she asked me, what about a mortgage? Hahaha, I don’t know, I just work here… So new to the program, I just passed her onto the place where I found my resources.

The meeting was great though anyway and the I got home to my housemate making some sweet music with another member… Thank God for the turn around.

 

Hope

Change of Scene

Today I have tried my utmost best to get some uni work out. I have been at it for 4 hours and have only managed to answer three questions. A word of advise… When you have a huge assignment due on Thursday, try not to give up coffee before hand, my gosh, I feel like my head is a balloon and someone is sitting on it!

I just realised that I already know the equine assisted therapy guy that I have been trying to get in contact with ๐Ÿ™‚ That makes things easier. I know him through the money fellowship. My vision board and my time plan are both stuck up on my walls. We have had a new housemate move in and it makes me wonder if I’ll ever be a girly girl. She has mountains and mountains of stuff. The bathroom has been all candled out and there’s a love heart on the kitchen counter. I stand there watching this whole design unfold in awe, but also then questioning myself. I’m not the kind of girl who can walk into a space and have this bright idea of how to make it pretty. I commend her efforts, but that vision is just totally unfathomable… I am just like, HOW???

Anyway – I have had good news and that is that my tax is actually coming through, I have no idea why I went into so much fear around it. That takes a huge weight off of my shoulders, having made the commitment to not debt one day at a time and pay for my uni. With limited work rights it makes it more complicated, but it’s all good now.

I had the most amazing experience with my sponsor yesterday. We started sharing my 8th step in the love fellowship and there was this huge shift. She encouraged me to pay attention to myself rather than what other people thought of me and all of a sudden with that shift of perspective the willingness arrived. It was profound. For the first time I am really happy to look at my past. Not for the pain you have caused me, but ย rather at what I had done wrong, not so I could tell you so you could condemn me. It was rather so that I could examine my behaviour, identify the patterns and make sure I don’t repeat those patterns again. Thats what true amends is about, I believe… Saying sorry is hollow, unless I am really willing to change. I am so willing to change.

1 week free of sexualising. The promises are starting to come true for me. There is hope. This program works. I am beyond grateful!!!

My Calling

calling.jpg

We had our first dinner party last night. Paleo inspired and my housemate made a zucchini brownie (which tasted exactly like a chocolate brownie) that was absolutely to die for. I did sous vide salmon, with a warm asparagus salad. The result was delish and really healthy.

Two of my friends cancelled, the reason for the dinner being paleo inspired, which disappointed me a little. For me it brings up the abandonment wound and what it brought up was the childhood monologue, “what about me?” – I remember I used to lie crying in the corner rocking in the fetal position spluttering out those words. ย Ah… those were the days ๐Ÿ˜‰

I am grateful this happened for two reasons. One is that the childhood tape entered into my consciousness. I have done such a good job over the years of forgetting my childhood, using drugs, alcohol and anything else I could find – so I am grateful when any memories come up, Second is that the dynamic of people who were there last night worked in perfect harmony. It was beautiful to watch the energy of the room and the dynamic shift and watch four people who didn’t know each other in their comfort zones. I really believe it is the energy of the house I am living in. I am just so grateful I moved here.

We got talking about hobbies and the improv comedy came up as mine. One of our guests is a comedian and the conversation that followed had me tense with excitement and wanting to shrivel up into a ball, partly because the idea of doing standup, though it has been my dream for so long, scares the hell out of me. Since I was very young, I wanted to do stand up. My favourite thing to do in the whole world is make people laugh. I have just never had the courage to get up on stage. It’s that dam performance anxiety that comes up.

All of a sudden there was this space created and a group of women were there supporting me. She told me, I need to go up and just be prepared to fail. That I just need to do an open mic night with no expectations. The girls even agreed to support me doing it. She spoke about the calling and that I’m fucked now that I’ve found it, because I have to do it. The scary thing is that she is right! I have to do it – I feel it in my bones. I am petrified, but it was no coincidence that last night happened the way that it did. God nudges me in really interesting ways. I live in town now, so I really have no excuse not to pursue this. I might need to add it to my list of esteemable acts.

A flame burns in me, which may be small, but can not be ignored. For it is the fire in my soul, which is warming my spirit and giving her the energy to fly… I am feeling a little excited, I wont lie.

 

I went back into the Closet

NarniaWardrobe

Technically speaking, I have been out of the closet for 12 years, but the more that I think about it, the more I realise that I haven’t really been out at all. It’s like I came out and announced my sexuality. Played on the outside for a bit and then went straight back in again and stayed there until yesterday.

The way I dress and wear my hair is so far from the lesbian stereotype as I could get it. I shaved off half of my hair in April, with so much fear about it taking away my femininity. I wanted my hair shaved since I was 10 years old, but didn’t have the confidence to do it. ย Deep down at my core, my inner child is a tom boy, who wants to wear baggy boys clothes and climb trees and get dirty – so why do I resist it so much?

Society has an expectation – or let me be more specific – I have an expectation, built on old, unaltered, outdated ideas of society’s expectations, based on what I have grown up with. That a woman should look a certain way and marry a man, have a home with a white picket fence and 2.5 children hahaha – bloody hell. I could think of nothing worse, so why am I trying to conform to such an old fashioned norm? Fear of being excluded and like I found out in therapy the other day, my driving reason – fear of being rejected for who I am and then fear of being abandoned. My father and my sister left me and then the only family I had left rejected me or rather the part of me that I have no control over.

Instead of staying out of the closet and facing the rejection of my family. I went back in and though I dated women, they were generally heterosexual and unavailable and bound to leave me anyway. I was not openly gay. The people who knew I was gay, were the people who had gotten to know me over a period of time long enough to see one of these affairs play out. If I spoke about my partner and the person just assumed it was a “him”, I did absolutely nothing to correct them. I was desperate for your love and your approval and petrified of you leaving me, so I hid away behind a facade of whatever I thought, you thought, was palatable.

It’s pretty sad when I think about it and a really lonely existence of never letting people in. Never showing anyone the real me. Rejecting myself first and tucking her away into a dark closet, so that you wouldn’t have the opportunity to reject me. I always thought of myself as very brave, but this behaviour has been far from courageous and has kept my isolated in my hider ego state for too long.

Yesterday marks the turning point for me, although the build up to it has been happening for a number of weeks now. I have been actively taking steps to integrate myself into the LGBTIQ community, little by little, to put an end to the rejection of it and inevitably putting an end to the rejection of myself. I have been to a few LGBTIQ meetings and I did the MQFF (Melbourne Queer Film Festival) – I attempted to go to 2 gay/lesbian nights out, but the gang cancelled. I showed willingness, which sometimes is all that you need. I have been asked to guest speak at a 12 step convention at the LGBTIQ meeting and for another 12 step fellowship, I was program coordinated for their convention, so I helped facilitate the creation of an LGBTIQ specific meeting, which I am quite happy about.

It feels like I am finding my voice. I am beginning to comprehend pride and feel passionately about advocating for the community, even if it is on a small scale. It means so much to me. At university we were assigned the task of creating a group presentation – Excited to learn more I suggested we look into marriage equality as it has not be passed in Australia yet. Making gays second class citizens and denying us our human right. “The right of adults to enter into consensual marriage is enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (Article 16).”

The presentation went down like a house on fire and I watched my fellow students get involved on a level that I had never seen before. It was a group of 7 of us and the girl who normally used to only show up 5 minutes before the final presentation, with her contribution, was present from the beginning and though she could not relate to being ostracised for her sexual preference, she could relate to being excluded for her Christian faith in a Muslim community and was answering class questions, trying to give our classmates perspective. The girl who is normally too shy to do anything but read her information off of a piece of paper, was bringing real life experience to the table and sharing about her cousin’s sexuality and how beautiful the experience was of getting the acceptance of the family. It brought out her sense of humour, “Being gay is not an illness! You can’t just call in sick to school one day and say, sorry I have come down with gay” hahaha – I loved it!

The topic had ears pricked and the whole class got involved in quite a heated debate, where I was given the opportunity to answer a question, using my own experience. With my heart thumping hard in my chest, in front of the whole class, I answered, “Well, I am gay…” and I shared my experience. I came out of hiding and I feel like it was an even bigger moment for me, than my first closet exit. I got vulnerable standing up in front of the whole class. The lecturer gave me a hug, another girl opened up about being pansexual and an authenticity was born and flowed freely through the conversations thereafter. It was beautiful and a day I will probably remember for the rest of my life. The truth will set me free.

Music on my Doorstep

160527123144-end-of-clamusicssical-music-illustration-exlarge-169

I have had an absolutely incredible night! I have the pleasure of living with a rapper hahaha! Hell Yeah!!! I LOVE music. I was supposed to go to a gig tonight with another muso. She cancelled, which suited me just fine, because I had the gruelling job of putting together an LGBTIQ group presentation. This job would have seen me burning the midnight oil and it’s actually freaking cold tonight.

So what does God give me? A guitarist/vocalist and my house mate rapper making music in our living room. Not only do I get to hammer out the presentation, but I get to do it while listening to music being made, in the warmth of my own home. God I love the creative process. I am sitting at the kitchen bench, trying not to smile too huge, while I listen to this magic.

Got to love it!

Just love me anyway

love

For years I have held parts of myself back, petrified of being rejected. That if you see who I really am, you might leave me.

I opened the wound today with my therapist and the burning in my chest amplified. I have an abandonment wound. My father and my sister left me behind when I was 10 years old. They moved to Germany illegally. My mom, desperate to stop them, held onto me and instead of abandoning the plan, because I wasn’t with them, they abandoned me instead.

That was the same year I stopped crying. I remember thinking consciously that if I chose not to feel anything, I would never be happy, but at least the pain would stop. I would have done anything to numb the agony – One of my first addictions was to TV… I used just escape into the fantasy of the storyline and focus on the onscreen drama to get away from the reality of my life.

That ย wound has been burning, since I started therapy. Today’s session scratched deep into the cut that sits in the same place, but this has a different story. There was a third abandonment and that comes from the rejection of who I am. I listened to a meditation after the session and I broke down, when the guide said “we are human beings” – The thing that popped into my head after grabbing onto myself to hold myself as I sobbed, was that I can’t help the way I feel and who I love. I am just a human being trying to do my best in the world – I can’t help that I turned out lesbian and despite my best effort, I can’t change that.

As the tears roll down my cheeks and I type between gasps of air, I feel grateful. For it is through these tears that I can heal and in this broken space, where these salty waterfalls will wash away the density that is blocking out the light. It is through recovery that I have found unconditional love. The women that love me regardless of what I do or who I choose, Slowly a safe space is being created, that I may come out of hiding. I can let my vulnerability show. I am loved through all my strength and all my weaknesses as the human being that I am, just the way I am in my perfect imperfection.

I comprehend unconditional love. It is a gift that I have had the pleasure of experiencing in this lifetime. Thank you God. I am blessed.