Saturday, October 24, 2015

What to feel when you don't know how to feel.

Lately, I've been trying to flood my psyche with happiness-inducing memes and stories and quotes, because I figure... sooner or later, something has got to stick with me.   So what have I got to be unhappy about?  If I knew the answer to that question, I might know how to help myself.

I recently figured out that I have a co-dependent personality.   For a little while, this brought some relief.  That there was a root cause for my behavior.  But now, more and more, I realize that I'm sure not going to be cut any slack by anyone based on this revelation.  The only person who can cut me any slack is me.

I have felt unhappy, lonely, and misunderstood for the majority of my life.  It's become very difficult to do anything or make any decision or say anything without second-guessing myself.   Almost impossible, really.  I'm not even sure who I am most of the time.  I think I can be a reasonably pleasant person when I try.  Other times, it feels very difficult and when that happens, I feel defeated by myself and that's when I become the angry, bitchy me.  Which leads to more second-guessing and self-condemnation.  It's a vicious circle.

I read something on Facebook about how people who have committed suicide are wrongly considered to be selfish.  This post went on about how people who are depressed enough to end their own lives truly believe that the people around them would be better off without them in the world.   I'm going to admit that I understand that thinking.  There have been times when I thought that very few people would know or care if I ceased to exist.  And sometimes I wonder .....  how fine is the line between very few people and nobody?

Maybe I just need to start cutting myself some slack.   I mean really, what are the facts?

I am NOT the most challenged, downtrodden person on the face of the earth.  Here are the facts of the past ten years:

Many of my immediate family has dispersed to other states.  Many of our most joyful holiday traditions no longer happen.  Hell, these people have essentially disappeared from my life.  I miss them more than I care to admit.

Three members of my family passed away in the span of 10 months.  One of these people was my mother.  One of these people was a 10-year-old child.  In the years since then I have experienced the deaths of people my age and people I sang with.

Roughly around the same time, I found myself fully engulfed in perimenopause - night sweats and brutal hot flashes.  I now know that my hormones had also rendered me incapable of maintaining an even keel of emotions for more than an hour or two.  Sadly, I was entirely focused on the physical issues and was dwelling on the deaths in my family,  and it took months for me to recognize that I was basically acting bat-shit crazy.

I have identified my co-dependent personality and, as I said, there was relief.  But now reality has set in.  My wacky co-dependent behavior is why I  am sitting home alone on a Saturday night.  Or, that's how it feels at the moment.

So..... what now?

How do I turn erratic behavior into something a bit more consistent - consistent, as in consistently good..... not consistently bitchy?  Hormone patches were a start.  What 's next?

How can I help myself feel more positive about "alone time"?    Since it seems to be a fact of my life,  I need to find a way to put a positive spin on it.

How do I stop beating myself up and second-guessing everything I say and do?  That's the tough one. That's where the whole co-dependent personality thing comes into play.

What is likable about me?  

I am funny - in a sarcastic way, mostly.
I am loyal.
I am creative

.....hmm, I'm sure there's more, but I don't think I'm at the point yet where I can come up with more.

So, I guess this explains why I don't know how I feel about too much these days.  Except that, mostly... I'm just afraid of messing up the rest of my life.  I'm afraid of alienating the people I care about.  I'm afraid of acknowledging that I deserve to be treated as well as I should be treating others.

Basically, I'm just afraid.   So there.   Let's move forward, shall we?

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