It was a good session. Which means it also left me vulnerable as hell. ((Dear JesusPhone: I really can spell hell instead of he’ll if I want to.))
Of course Ike came along.
So we talked a bit about what I’ve been writing about lately on the blog.
I forget how we went farther than that. Probably it started when I began talking about the time I broke up with my parents, which was something of a horrible, extended experience over three months, punctuated by death threats. Always nice to get from your parents. (For details, I think there’s some in “Session the Fifth, or, How I Left.”)
Anyways, I started talking about something I’ve always had trouble with. Which is that I’m great at denial. Way too good, really.
For instance, in my life:
- Even after I learned how the more normal half lived, I still thought of my life under the thumb of my parents as… the natural order of things, and therefore not bad.
- Even after my parents threatened to kill me, a threat my father almost made good on several times over the years, I didn’t believe they meant it. My friends had to deceive me a bit to save me.
- Even after my mother crushed my hand, I… well, okay, that particular betrayal did accelerate the gears turning in my head. Although it still took a couple years to save up enough covert money to attempt independence.
- Even though I wanted to get a doctorate in Computer Science like the rest of my friends, I didn’t think about getting a job above store clerk when school finally ended. My life was supposed to be taking care of my parents from 21 onwards.
- Even as I was sitting in the emergency dean’s office in shock, they had to give me one of those checklists, the kind that let you score up a relationship as abusive or not. The only box left unchecked was something like rape. I mean, they even listed strangling as a danger sign!
- Even after I was actually on the run after a betrayal by two other friends, I thought everyone was overreacting on the strangling, knife “play”, locking up in closets, etc.
- Even after another friend tried to… well… blackmail me out of $4000 of my $8000 that was all I had in my name at the time… yeah, um, it’s kind of a wonder I donate so heavily in my later adulthood.
- Even after intervening years of paranoia, waking nightmares, and nightmares, I still didn’t think I needed to see a psychiatrist or psychologist. This denial I regret the most, because I lost a lot of trust from my new friends by having a full-fledged flashback at their place during Thanksgiving.
- Even though I knew that Christmas triggered me, I still took holiday oncall. Which is a really dumb way to put the welfare of the company, much less my job, as I began to move into teams with more destructive potential if the oncall, say, had an episode during a high-severity event.
- It took me until last Father’s Day when I decided to start trying to remember what happens year to year instead of constantly denying it and never learning, despite some meltdown I had trouble classifying as such until of late.
- Even now, when I like my psychologist and psychiatrist and I know they really help, I often found excuses to cancel appointments. “Oh, we have a project at work…” but we always do. “Oh, but I’m oncall…” but anybody on my team is willing to cover an oncall for a day. I resolved a couple weeks back to never cancel my appointments again. If I hadn’t, I would have canceled this appointment.
- Even now, when I’ve been enlightened on this whole abuse thing, I have a very hard time… to the point where I can’t say it out loud without stammering… and pausing… even as I write this… conceiving of them as having loved me very much. It was a sick, poisoned love… and it’s much easier to believe them to be simply evil monsters, but it is only 99.9999% true.
- Oh. Yeah, and I had this blog for some years and for the first half of its tenure I never wrote about this horrible anguish. Because if I did, that would “make it real.” This after years of the aforementioned and enlightenment.
Strangely, about the only thing I have no denial about are my job and my hobbies. And for a long time I treated them as more important than my life, because then I didn’t have to confront what all my years of hell meant.
Anyways, in summary: I’m trying to stop denying stuff.
In other news, I did get to sit in the sun with Ike a little, staring at a wall. Usually this would fill my mind with recall hell, but with Ike hugged tight, it didn’t.
The rest of the day I spent in thousand-year stare mode at my desk, with Ike clutched in my arms. The day was interrupted by a sexist dude asking for help, and not only that, he lied to us.
Then back to thousand-year stare.
Good thing I managed to find an oncall swap for the weekend. I might just stay sane, but as they say, it’ll get fucking horrible before it gets better.