Putting Pieces of My Life Back Together

I had a very strange experience today. I went to visit my grandmother, nothing special about that, it’s usually a not very interesting hour or two of talk about everything and nothing. Especially since my mother stopped talking to her parents and I got the feeling they actually don’t know how to approach me. Well, this afternoon was different and very different and it changed my life a lot, to be honest. I think, that I’m finally putting pieces of my life back together.

For some background here, several years ago, my grandparents decided to give their cottage to their son. They just told that to my mum and expected her to accept it without any problems. My mum didn’t accept it, she was hurt, because she felt it as another thing in a long line of neglect. She felt that she was robbed of her second home and that her brother was the preffered one, something she had felt her whole life. And my uncle had some problems of his own at the time…he still has. So they argued, very badly, and she cut her family out, pretty much completely. It was a time my heart, my soul and my life shattered into pieces so small I thought I would never be able to put them back together. I thought my family was loving and close, but suddenly it wasn’t so and my life changed, a lot. I no longer believed in happy families and I didn’t know what to do. I crashed the floor harder than I ever thought possible. My mum told me some things about her childhood and teenage years that explained a lot about her having difficulty expressing feelings for me and my sister and whole lot of stuff. I wanted to ask my grandparents for years, how they felt and feel. Don’t they mind that we aren’t a family anymore? But I was terrified and didn’t know how to start such a conversation. Today, I got the answer. It wasn’t easy and it was painful, but it opened new door for me.

I came to my grandmother and we talked as usual. My life, my future plans, my new tattoo and everything was as usual until my college fee came across and I mentioned I have a bit of reduction for health reasons and she asked what health reasons. So I decided not to pretend anymore and just told her about my problems, about my depression and anxiety. She told me some stuff my mother told me, that all people have problems and so on, but she was also more understanding. She said that probably nobody really understands if they don’t have the experience, which is more than my mum ever said. And then she started talking, a lot, about my mum and their problems. She gave me the point of view I needed so much. I won’t go in many details, because it was personal, but I understood, I felt, how hurt she was. She and my grandfather were trying to do the right thing as they saw it and my mum just cut them off. I feel bitter… I understand both of them, both their sides, I know they are both hurt and yet I cannot do anything. I cannot tell one or the other to talk to the other side. They are grown-ups…but it hurts to think that my grandmother might die and never feel that her daughter loves her. And I think she does, that’s why she’s always so mean… And I wonder, why life has to be so complicated… I wish to fix this, but I can’t, I can’t tell them to just talk to each other, when both feel they did nothing wrong.

I also told my grandmother, how I felt about it, that it hurt me how things fell apart. That we were happy family and suddenly we weren’t. That I was confused and that it still hurts. That I’m afraid of my own wedding, because I’m worried that they’ll argue there. That it hurts that I can’t invite all my family, because my mum would literally kill me, if I invited my uncle and aunt. Or she would refuse to go. She said so when she thought I’m thinking about it. Well, not the killing part, but she was pretty shocked… I’m the last one to defend my mum, because I know how difficult she can be. I know she has hard time admitting her mistakes and she remebers every single bad thing someone told her or done to her. However, I do get her, I get her point of view as much as I get my grandma. Her daughter just cut her off, she doesn’t call and doesn’t care, she’s acting like she’s not interested, and all for some piece of property. My mum sees it differently, but again, I don’t want to put myself in the middle of this.

Weird thing is, I talked about the real reasons I quitted my job last week and about the real things I want to do with my life. I was open about how her I about what I felt and I wasn’t judged… My grandmother listened to me and even acted like she understood! Did she really? I don’t know, but she was at least trying to be supportive, she listened to my fears about my future, my problems, I told her honestly why I have problems connecting with my sister and for the first in looooong time, someone from my family actually listened. Really listened. Perhaps not agreed and I didn’t agree with everything she said, but she did listen! And I realised one thing, not only is my mum very much like her mother, even though she don’t want to admit it, but I’m very much like my grandmother. And this day, maybe, was a beginning. The day we both might be able to put our lives back together. I feel so, not as the child I used to be, but as an adult woman. It hurts to let go of past illusions, but it feel lifting to get this new relationship. I decided today to try and give this a chance. Call my grandmother more often, talk to her when she’s back in town and just try. It’s worth the effort, if I can put my life back together. It won’t ever be the same. I will always feel hurt at my boyfriend’s family parties, where they are all happy and together, but I have chance. A chance to have someone in my family, who gets me or at least tries to. And who supports me openly, with all her heart. Because that’s what my grandmother told me, that she loves and that she will support me if I ever need anything.

I hope I shed some light into her life today and that we gave each other hope that at least the two of us together can have a realtionship. I still feel confused about my feelings and not sure what to think, but at least there’s hope. A hope I might be able to put myself and my life back together.

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Out of Sight, Out of Mind. Friendship Dies.

Will it always be like this? I stop seeing someone and somehow any feelings we had for each other just vanish into the air? I’m not sure how many times I can survive this, I feel shredded inside. I always just wanted to belong, to be loved and accepted, but for some reason, every time I thought I had it, I woke up to realize that it was just a dream.

It’s not that I don’t have friends, I have, it’s just… I always wished for a group of people to go out, have fun, spend time and just be a part of something. I kind of lost my best friend, because our ways separated. K., I know you will probably read this and I just want to say that I don’t blame you, even if it sounds like it. It doesn’t mean that I don’t miss our talks and laughs about anything and everything, talking about boys, life, problems, supporting each other. I miss it, terribly, and the gap between now is painful. But I don’t blame you or me, I guess that’s just life works… You grow up and lose things dear to you. Or may be I should have tried harder to keep in touch.

I remember I had a group of friends at high school, we went to movies, had parties, but it didn’t work out in the end. Problems emerged, my depressions got worse at the time and they ended up psychologically bullying me. Later, they blamed me, because I was depressed and for that obviously not deserving to be believed. Yeah, my so called friends told my parents about suicidal thoughts I had had year before and used it against me, that it was actually my own fault, the way they behaved, and also that I shouldn’t be believed, because I’m not normal. I guess that’s when I stopped trusting other people, it took me months to persuade my mum that I’m ok. It wasn’t truth, but seeing her so shocked and hurt, I just couldn’t tell her. Unfortunatelly this also prevented me from telling them the truth sooner then last year, I was afraid to hurt them again. And I learned an important lesson about people. When you open up, you get stabbed in the back. Funny that I was good enough for those people to help them with their problems, but when I needed help, they kicked me out of the group. I sometimes wonder, what would happen, if they supported and helped me instead. How different I would be…

I thought university would be different, because that’s were you form your friendships for life, right? Well, yes and no. I made new friendships, but most of them ended, when we graduated. I got together with some classmates pretty early the first year at university and it was great. We went to pubs, talked about school and everything, I thought that this was it, these people were the ones, my group to belong to. It worked pretty great, I guess. Although before graduation, I sometimes felt like a third wheel again, but I thought that I was just stressed out and imagining things. But after getting our bachelor’s degree, they mostly continued in the same program for master’s, but I went to study something else. I’m still in the same town, at the same school and faculty, but since then, they never invited me anywhere. And I know they do things, because I still have them on facebook and I see the photos. Do I blame them? I guess not. Does it hurt anyway? Yes, it does, a lot.

Is this how world works? You stop spending almost every day with someone and the relationship just fades away? Or is it my fault? Am I this weird person, that nobody wants to be around? It cannot be that we just forget people we used to care about, right? It must be my fault, somehow. Otherwise, it seems cruel and lonely to live like this. And don’t worry, I’m not suicidal when I say this, just mentally exhausted, hurt, lonely, lost and… I just cannot understand this. I just want to belong somewhere, to know there are people who care, not feel like I could just leave and barely anybody would notice. Do I just pick wrong people? Or do they somehow feel that I’m different and they just remove me without even thinking about it? Will I always feel this way? Will it always hurt this much or will I grow cold and get used to this? Am I the only one who feels like this? I’m exhausted, confused and abandoned. I guess I wish just too much when I want to belong somewhere, although I thought that it was a simple wish.

Anxiety Level: High

I am at home after almost two months and let’s just say that it is demanding. Not that my family is to be blamed for that, really. I was having anxiety problems since Thursday and no way to deal with it in healthy way, like crying or trying to solve the problems that trigger me. I was at work on Thursday, eleven hours dealing with customers in bookshop, no privacy, just smiles and helpful welcoming attitude. And it got worse yesterday, I faced some mistakes I made, in various areas, I got depressed and anxious, but couldnt deal with it, because I came home and my mum wanted to see me and talk to me…

Don’t get me wrong, my mum has been great these days. She huggs me, makes me feel welcome and loved, she was interested in the wedding rings I liked, my work, how I feel, if I’m ok or my problems got worse… Really, she has been loving so much that I’m almost ashamed for feeling this way. I don’t know what triggered me, I guess many things just appeared, but I just feel ready to explode, full of fear that I’m trying to keep at bay. It didn’t help that one of my facebook friends tried to explain to me, that we are in the third world war and Europe is just blind to see it and that there are some prophecies about doom or what… That was the last thing I need it to get over the line, because after that I needed to medicate myself to gain control again. I still feel afraid and anxious, but at least it’s not so overwhelming.

I need to write a short paper to school and note down some points for my diploma thesis, so that my supervisor can go through it and decide if I can continue in that direction. Because I work almost full time and I still need to finish my studies in autumn, which does not scare me at all, really, absolutely not, why would you think I’m terrified of that…

So that’s my vent for today, I hope it will easy some of the tension in me. I have some other things I want to write about, but I lack energy and ability to concentrate. I thought I would do so much work today, but I guess not.

Marinashutup: What They Don’t Tell You About Depression (and my commentary)

Today I’m going to share two videos made by a youtuber Marinashutup, where she talks about her experience with depression. I agree almost completely with her and I will comment more down after the videos.

The first video is true in the sense that after starting taking antidepressants, you can experience a lot of energy and positive feelings, because your brain is on fire, metaphorically speaking. I know this, because I experienced it too, after taking the pills several weeks, I felt like I was bathing in sunshine and positive feelings every single second. It was great, but it didn’t last forever. Back then my psychiatrist told me that this is normal experience, way to kill my buzz… It is kind of naive, but I like the numbers she mentions, about the number of people affected and treated. It’s scary and sad.

I agree a lot with Marina with what she says in the second video. It is hard to admit to yourself, that you’re not ok. Getting diagnosed and treated is not easy, there is a lot of stigma. I mentioned in my previous post that I waited too long because I was afraid of the label “mentally ill”. And also, because I read about this, of course, but I had never thought it could happen to me. What she calls a relapse in the video, it’s what I call a roller-coaster in my blog. I go up and I go down and it can be really exhausting. In my case, the relapse can take from several hours to several days or weeks. Usually I can spot it, I get too tired, too emotional, too restless and anxious, sad and feel really bad… Really, after years with this disorder, I usually get the message. I can even spot it in my blog, the very bad and sad posts I put here, those are the moments when I relapse. It’s not permanent, I get back eventually, but it is exhausting.

I also like that she stresses the problem of disbelieve. Mental problems tend to be dismissed, especially in teenagers. I wrote a post, which you can find here, when I was really sad and emotional after reading a discussion on a page dealing with mental disorders. I admit, when I read about people dealing with similar issues, I get teary a lot. It hurts me that so many people go through this, nobody deserves this! And saying to them they just made it up? That’s the worst, don’t do that. Somehow, some people think I need to flaunt my disorder to feel special, yeah… It feels really special to know my brain is not working as it should, I feel like a totally¬† special person.

I think Marina makes good points and I admire her courage to share her experience.

Wearing a Mask

What does it feel to live with depression? Mostly, it feels like wearing a mask. I have worn it most of my life and only recently put it down, occasionally. I have learnt to act very well, for the sake of the people I love.

For me, it speaks volume what my mum said when I told her about my problems a year ago. She was surprised, she never suspected anything. Why should she, I made the effort not to let her know. On surface, I was normal girl, I wasn’t super popular, but I had some friends, I was a good student and daughter, there was nothing wrong with me, right? Well, there was, a lot. I don’t remeber how many times I have hid my feelings, how much strenght did it take not to show anything. I learnt to cry silently, not to wake up my sister or anyone, I learnt to take a few deep breaths before entering home, to calm down and look happy. When I didn’t understand what was going on with me, I didn’t know how to express it and when I knew, I didn’t want to hurt anyone, especially my parents.

I felt… guilty. Guilty of being unhappy when I had almost everything. My parents are not rich, but they have always done a lot for me and my sister. They let me go on pretty much every foreign trip with school, they even let me go to London on my own and I was barely eighteen! Yes, my sister studied there, but I spent all they on my own, travelling through the big city, I have been to England about five or six times so far, I have been to Spain and to Netherlands also. Yes, my parents say it’s because they supported my sister in London, so they had felt guilty of not allowing me something similar, but still… I really had nothing to complain about, yet I wasn’t happy. Most of my teen years my sister was in London, so crying in bed was possible, since nobody could hear me. I hurt, badly, I felt lost and ashamed of myself. I couldn’t tell my parents, I was afraid of hurting them and I didn’t want to hurt them, at any cost. At since I paid the cost, it was ok, right? I felt that I deserved it, I was ungrateful person, so I deserved the pain.

I still wear the mask, very often. I don’t want to be a nuisance. I know people have their own lives and they don’t need me to add to their problems. The only problem is that it turns againt me sometimes. Recently, my partner told me he has felt like I don’t let him be close, I don’t let him help me with anything. Sadly, that is true, my quest for not being a burden has taking interesting twist with me rather doing everything than to ask for help. So after being together for almost five years, my boyfriend still feels that I don’t let him close to me and I don’t let us be a team. The things is, I don’t know how to do this. I’m afraid, that if I let him close, he finds me too difficult to live with and leaves me. Pathetic, right?

I honestly don’t know how to get from this circle, sometimes I wish to be literally invisible not to stand in anyone’s way and I would appologize for asking even something important. I don’t speak about worries or wishes, I would do anything to make people happy. Because most of all, I’m afraid to let people see me, because I’m convinced, that they would leave me. So I wear a mask and I’m really good at it.