Addy, my oldest, posted this on her instagram. I recognize this woman with the sunshine on her shoulders, reminding me of a Nanci Griffith song.
And her ways were free and it seemed to meTecumseh Valley by Nanci Griffith
The sunshine walked beside her”
And I feel truly loved. Addy loves me. To be able to take a photo of someone and find their best self, to highlight their beauty effortlessly, means you love that person. People who don’t absolutely love you, can’t take a good picture of you. It’s a theory.
I need that woman in the photo to be here. I need to be here. I know the safety warning on the airplane about the oxygen mask going on yourself first but I have always seen that as selfish- I mean good advice for all the other humans but not for me. I get why you have to save yourself first to save your baby. I can understand it with my brain but in the situation, I would never save myself first. I don’t want to live without my babies.
Don’t be scared for me and my lost knowledge of who I am, my importance in the universe and my love of myself. I am alive and I will be alive for a long time. Don’t worry about what kind of neuroses would have me believe that I couldn’t save myself first. At least I’m aware of who I am in this moment. That could be seen as progress. I can reflect. I can ponder.
I am coming to a realization that I have experienced trauma. I need deep healing. Soul redepmptive healing. I am lost. And yet I am beautiful and whole and mothering. I can be both at the same time. I can be fat and healthy. I can be wickedly cruel and tenderly compassionate. I can be forgetful and accomplished. I can pour my heart out for the world to read and I can be secretive quiet.
I have been experiencing a striking piercing pain when one of my children is hurt and it has been more often lately. One of my kids is going through some stuff and my heart aches. So Saturday, I text the cousins and my mom and the depths of facebook for people with contacts in the psychological world and I sought help. And somehow I am the one with a new therapist to start Tuesday. I want my child to get all the resources they need to be whole and content and I’m not giving up on that idea but while emailing therapists on Saturday morning for my child, one for me answered back first. The oxygen mask was sort of thrust upon me and yes I feel a bit guilty. And yes the guilt is unwarranted.
I’ll go. To therapy.
One baby step at a time as Bill Murray would say in What about Bob.
I’m not sure what is going on and I have a feeling that it is a trauma that is making me feel stuck. Not an event from a stranger or a war or a crime. I’m not sure it can be classified as trauma or if I’m being too judgmental by not admitting that I experienced trauma. I can remember moments of sheer intolerable dread when Addy was sick and hospitalized in Wisconsin, the girls got lice and our landlord went to jail so the bank was telling us to find a new place to live in a month. And I remember needing Chad and not finding him. (He may remember the same exact thing.) I’m sad and I feel unworthy of better times.
When a small thing happens like my son’s biology teacher refuses to listen to my email and plays a movie that is triggering to people with eating disorders, I completely fall apart. Completely. George came home and said his bio class is watching FED UP- a movie created by Larry David’s wife. I emailed the teacher and sited a position paper from an advocacy group regarding eating disorders. The teacher said she remembered Addy and that she needed to show the movie because it covered two learning standards on glucose. She said George could go to the library instead of watching.
I melted and hit the ceiling within a span of 2 minutes. Why would it be ok for the other students to watch the movie? Why would I pass along the position paper just for my child? I’m not emailing to rescue George. I’m not just putting on his oxygen mask. I want an oxygen mask for the whole class.
Quick rant—-Larry David is a comedian with lots of money. His wife makes a movie about food (she has an eating disorder by the way) and they fund it and years later it is still triggering kids who have a genetic predisposition to Anorexia or Bulimia. I can’t believe this. Why in International Baccalaureate Biology class do we need to watch a film like this?
“We have a very vigorous social action campaign,” said David. Several ways to help change the system, including taking a no-processed foods pledge, are offered at the conclusion of the film, which sees childhood obesity and the growing diabetes rate as a direct result of food conglom’s relentless focus on profits and how much the government is beholden to the corporation’s interests. The impetus for making the docu came from Couric’s interest in “finding out why everyone was getting so sick,”Katie Couric and Laurie David made a film on causes of childhood obesity.
Sounds innocent enough unless you use evidenced based treatment of eating disorders and evidenced based treatment of childhood obesity. This isn’t science. Pledging to not eat villainized food groups increases eating disorder behaviors. Sounds like a feelpinion. I thought this was science class.
Click the bar above to see the entire position paper with dos and don’ts for ED.
I cried and yelled. I took a nap. I apologized to my kids for losing it. And I cried some more over take out.
My best guess -This seems to be a response motivated by trauma. I don’t think I am not right or that I my response isn’t understandable or founded in truth. But I am aware that my reaction is huge and unruly.
And then when it comes to gaslighting, extramarital affairs, distrust, lying, I have similarly huge responses. I have too many things that cause me huge amounts of pain. I should be angry and outraged that people cheat. And yet when it wipes me out for a couple of days, it just doesn’t work. My life is becoming too effected by my own responses to things I can’t control.
So I will go to therapy. I have killed lots of succulents by caring for these tiny babies that can care for themselves- who don’t even need my water. I have lived this way and I don’t have to continue. I can become.