Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Picking up the pen


I'm back.

When I decided to take a blog break in October I never expected to be gone so long. My intention was to sit back and breath and think for a while.

Blogging has a way of getting into your head where everything becomes a potential blog post. And even the posts you choose to write can become over edited.

And I knew I needed to stop editing and instead pause to think.

In late August I started seeing a social worker/mental health advocate for talk therapy. It was one of those things that I've always 'believed in' but never made the step to commit to. I'm such a verbal, expressive person that (for a long time) I felt I didn't really need to sit down and sort out anything. I didn't have a problem feeling my emotions. Expressing my thoughts. Why would I 'need' therapy?

But after intimately seeing/noticing people around me reject help or remediation I began to see the similarities between us. No, I'm not hot-tempered. I don't throw daggers. I do not self medicate. But if I am still feeling (yet editing) pain, resentment, confusion from different unresolved episodes in my life aren't I rejecting the lifeboat as well?

So with that I talked to my lady-parts doctor and told her I wanted to speak with someone. She referred me and I started going once a week.

It wasn't until I sat down and opened up in a session that I realized how much I was actually holding back. How often I edit me feelings, speech, and thoughts as if my life is an extended blog post. And although I wasn't comfortable enough to tell her everything, my doctor asked me to make at least one journal entry in between visits. Entries I could share or not share.

But I was editing my journal too! So I needed to choose. Keep blogging, which was feeding my need to edit), or write and speak freely. I chose freedom.

And it was the most uncomfortable thing ever. I began to just write hard and fast whenever the need hit me. Which was usually before, during, or after high stress moments. And all this reflection directly coincided with several new things entering my home life that I greatly resented. So this has been my Fall and early Winter.

Whew.

I cannot say that all things are now resolved. But I can say that I am stronger, fresher, more honest.

I'm 85% sure that most people's biggest fear/issue about receiving mental health services is that it will be discovered that you actually are "crazy", broken, dysfunctional.  But I'll tell you this, the crazy thing is to continue not functioning. To insist on dysfunction out of fear  of what functioning looks like.

One thing running a marathon taught me is that discomfort is okay. You just have to press through it. Because the end; that home stretch, the medal and feeling of accomplishment, all that is the reminder that victory/peace/wholeness is often born out of being broken down and built brand new.

This is where my Zen is.