It’s been a tough week. There have been a lot of emotions and a lot of memories coming back to the surface, and I’ve been struggling with managing it all. But, as usual, I pulled myself together and got through it.
Therapy was difficult this week, but I was a lot better than I was the week before. Writing a letter to my therapist beforehand actually made discussing things much easier. We’ve been talking about some of the issues I have with my father; there’s a lot of shit to muddle through concerning that topic. I’m having trouble believing that my feelings towards him are valid. There are even times when I’m not even sure how to identify my feelings at all.
During our last session, my therapist suggested that I write a letter to my father. I actually knew that was what she was going to say before she even said it – I would have suggested the same thing to one of my clients (I guess I may not be so horrible at being a therapist after all). She said I can bring in the letter on Monday and we can work through it. I haven’t written the letter yet; I will probably write it tomorrow once I am done with work. I am hesitating a little because I know that I tend to let it all out on paper. At the retreat in April, I wrote a letter to my mother during a letter-writing session and I ended up having a mild breakdown. I had written so many things that I didn’t even realize until I read it over. Then I felt like a horrible person for thinking and writing the things that I did. I don’t want that same thing to happen when I write this letter to my father. I want to be able to handle my feelings without feeling guilty. We’ll see how it goes.
I’m also still struggling with the DID diagnosis. My therapist asked me in the beginning of our last session to ask my parts if they had anything that they needed to say. I couldn’t do it. One reason was because it meant acknowledging that my parts exist, which is an ongoing back-and-forth for me. The other reason was because of what happened on Tuesday; I didn’t want that child to come out and talk about missing our mother again. My therapist could tell that I wasn’t comfortable with it, so she didn’t press the issue any further. But I also wasn’t honest with her about why I didn’t want to do it.
I was having a rough time Thursday night. I had worked all morning, went straight to therapy, and then came home and had to process everything. Something happened that put me over the edge and I just had to go outside and breathe to try to gain back some stability. I ended up sitting outside for over an hour, contemplating whether or not I should cry, light something on fire, or go back inside and go to sleep.
As I was sitting outside, I decided to e-mail my therapist. She had e-mailed me a link to an article on DID disclosure after our session that day. As odd as it is, I am okay with disclosing the DID to the outside world. Because of my work with HealthyPlace, my name is now permanently associated with DID. I am less okay with disclosing the DID to myself. Internally, I am finding it difficult to accept, even though I know that I have it. I am trying to be in denial while at the same time being fully aware that I am trying to be in denial despite the reality. Denial doesn’t quite work out so well when you are aware of it; it only creates dissonance. I also have a tendency to tell myself that I failed somehow and that is why I have DID, that it’s just another one of my many failures.
I also revealed what happened with my younger part the other day, and why I was so afraid to get in touch with those parts during therapy. My therapist wrote back that even though it is unnerving to be able to sense their feelings and hear their voices, that it is actually a good sign. She also wrote that I may not have been ready to hear those younger parts before, but now my consciousness is allowing it for a reason. I know that she’s right. but it still scares me. I feel ill-prepared. It’s just been me and Charlie for so long, and I wasn’t even handling that relationship well. My therapist is going to work with me on how to respond to my parts, because I told her I don’t think I know what to do and it overwhelms me, like it did on Tuesday. I need to get myself to a point where I can just accept my DID and my parts, and realize that this is not an indication of failure. I feel horrible for not being able to protect all of my parts from their traumas, when the reality is that I have these parts because they were protecting me.
With all that’s been going on these last few weeks, I put grad school preparation off to the side. I have just over three weeks before the application is due. I am going to need to make it a priority to get everything finished. This is something I need to do, not only for financial reasons but because deep down, I feel like I have a purpose as a therapist. I feel that a lot of what has happened has happened for a reason. I moved to this specific location for a reason. I was chosen to write about living with DID for HealthyPlace for a reason. I started this blog for a reason, and it has evolved into so much more than I intended it to be. All of these things have helped me to grow, even though I have trouble seeing that sometimes. I think grad school will also help me grow. It will give me more purpose.
Thankfully, I’ve been given extra hours at work this coming week. It will help keep me busy, and I’ll have more money to pay my bills. I’m just hoping that I will be able to handle the extra work, and the blog, and the grad school prep, and therapy. It’s draining, but it’s what I need to do.