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Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Catching up...and a few confessions

Wow! Almost an exact month since my last post. Kind of scary. Well, less scary I guess considering my last month has been a hellish roller coaster with sone really awesome highs and some seriously fucked up lows. My psych dr is pretty sure some event triggered it, as I'd been doing really well in therapy and on my new medication.

Warning: I do not hold a grudge against my teachers, mentors, or parents. They were doing what they thought was best in the way they thought was best. While i realize and accept this, it does not lessen the impact, damage, and trauma that may have resulted.

Content warning: emotional trauma

But, I guess if I'm being honest my downslide probably started when I decided to jump from keeping my schedule on paper to only digital, and some things didn't make it over. One of my biggest pet peeves is people being late and I'm mortified when I am. I missed or forgot until reminded over 5 deadlines. I wanted to die of embarrassment.

Yes, I know everyone makes mistakes. You're probably wondering why I don't cut myself some slack. Well, it's not that easy. My brain, besides serious chemical imbalances, is wired differently than your average person's. I've got a crazy list of mental illnesses and disorders and fun stuff I grapple with everyday.

And yes, I do my best to stay on top of things without losing my mind even when I don't slip up. My husband tells me I take on too much, but I always feel like I should be doing more. Doing better. Improving faster. Which is funny because I'm not competitive and I don't want to be the best. I want to be solidly middle of the road dependable. Which for me is like climbing Mt Everest in only a bikini at times.

Early in school they made us take IQ tests to separate out the smarter kids for extra classes instead of recess or computer lab time. Guess what happens when you test as a genius and above the 95th percentile? Everyone's expectations skyrocket. Why? Because as soon as they know you're smart they expect you to excel and be the best. Not top of your class? Keep the pressure on and rising so the genius reaches full potential. Know what that did for me? I burned out in my 2nd or 3rd year. Of ekementary school.

But did that stop me from pretending everything was fine? Nope. It did cause me to learn quickly how to hide everything. Crying when you aren't hurt and someone didn't die? Not allowed at my house.

Ever been called a crybaby by your father in a mocking voice when you were five because you couldn't get your words out when you were upset or stressed? I have. By the time I was nine, I was so scared to cry, when my great uncle John died, and I saw my dad cry for the first time,  my mom had to tell me multiple times that I wouldn't get in trouble if I cried.

Nothing was ever good enough for my dad. Not to my face. But a lot of the neighborhood adults and kids treated me poorly. My dad would constantly brag about me to other adults, and some in turn would unfairly ask their kids why they couldn't do better like me.

Due to the constant bullying and harassment at school I learned to do everything I could to blend into the background at school. It didn't help. Teachers, trying to help me often gave me different, harder assignments and held higher expectations for my work for fear I'd get bored. I delighted in this until in junior high, during English, oneof my classmates loudly complained that I was exempt from the essay outlining exercise the rest of the class was doing. The teacher (thankfully) did not explain that I was working on a college-level essay topic that wpuld be graded as a college-level essay. She simply replied that I learned differently. But I was still so embarassed. The teacher, when handingout the worksheets had simply slipped my packet off the bottom and gave it to me, having spoken to me before class. I was so relieved that it hadn't been obvious. I was deep into writing the essay when my classmate loudly objected and it made me want to melt into the floor. But by then I'd mastered the art of no reaction, no telltale facial twitch, or physical tic, or even blushing to indicate I'd heard. I had lost my rhythm but continued to write, as stopping would have meant acknowledging that I was indeed different.

I think I've cleansed what I can today. Blessed Solstice.