Thursday: Disconnect

Forgive me, Dear Reader. It’s been eight days since my last post… (Is it obvious that I am also a recovering Catholic? 😂)

I’ve been a bit under the weather; and, as a result, have found myself smack dab in the middle of mental depression. Sadly, this isn’t uncommon in my world; and though I’ve gotten much more adept at handling it, it’s always a struggle to find myself here.

For me, the most frustrating part of mental affliction is the fundamental disconnect between knowing and feeling. I know that this will soon pass, and that putting one foot in front of the other will help to hasten that passage. I feel, however, that the darkness will never dissipate; and I should therefore simply give in, and wallow away.

Second to that frustration is knowing that my moods also affect Mitchell. Though skilled at tip-toeing across eggshells, he often finds himself a target for all of the negative feelings swirling in and around me. It isn’t fair, it just is.

Last, but not least, there is the formidable weight that comes from everything feeling overwhelming — from brushing my teeth to filling ice cube trays to studying for my courses at the university to my obligations in AA.

The irony of depression is that it takes away your will to move, when moving is the only thing that will pull you out of it. (That damn disconnect again.) And that is where I currently find myself — stuck between knowing I must move, and having absolutely no desire to do so.

Falling ill interrupted my Yoga practice and the routine that went along with it. These past several days, I played video games and watched reruns of “The Office” in lieu of completing “normal” everyday tasks… and having done so has made me feel more lethargic and a little less human.

So I suppose the only thing to do is to get up out of this chair, brush my teeth, take a shower, and get dressed. Who knows? Perhaps I will feel better after having done so, and will then continue to move forward.

I just really don’t want to. No promises, Dear Reader. I’ll let you know how it goes…

Thursday Soundtrack: Citizen Soldier

Tuesday: Day Two (and Sexual Haunting)

I’m not well rested today. Mitchell came to bed around three in the morning, and woke me in the process — further dooming me to hours of tossing and turning (and very little sleep) from there on out. I was able to doze a bit once he got up this morning; but sadly, solid rest could not be found. So I gave up the ghost, and got up.

I wasn’t happy about “having” to do Yoga, but I again trudged through. Thankfully, the instructor I follow on YouTube has a very calming, relaxed approach to her practice. No matter how discouraged I feel going in, I always feel better coming out. (Note to self: That means you have now felt better for having practiced Yoga two seemingly dismal mornings in a row.)

I’m a bit sore and stiff, but have sustained no injuries. Therefore, I had little excuse not to go about my new morning routine — shower, brush my teeth, dry my hair, get dressed, and eat some Greek yogurt before all else. (To some, this may seem ridiculous to note as an achievement; but those of you who understand that such activities can be monumental tasks, I count as true members of my tribe.)

After that, I didn’t want to write… but that same annoying, little voice from yesterday said, It takes time to form new habits. Don’t yet give up! I promptly told it to shut the hell up, and grabbed the laptop to play Magic: The Gathering; but instead, have (rather reluctantly) found myself here.

The thing about positive behavior is that it brings about positive reward. Physical activity increases the amount of dopamine in the brain, and helps us to feel empowered.

The problem is that when I feel more empowered, I feel prettier — more sexual. The longing to be desired, and to receive physical confirmation of that desire, increases. And in my house, that quickly leads to arguments. Thus, I have begun to equate feeling better to further frustration.

Don’t misunderstand. I have a good life. I’m married to an intelligent, kind man who possesses a very quick, dry wit. He cares deeply for me, is an excellent cook (a talent I sorely lack), and supports me in my endeavors. He just isn’t interested in sexual expression.

I used to think that this was a part of his personality that had changed over the course of our marriage, and that I was somehow at fault. The better I get at listening to him, though, the more I understand that it’s far more likely I am the one who has changed.

He recently pointed out that I was always the affectionate initiator of our sex life; and that when I got sick, that part of me seemed to slip away. It only returned when I started drinking again; and (duh) he wasn’t/isn’t crazy about who I am when I’m drowning myself in Jameson’s.

This observation prompted me to reevaluate my sex inventory; and the hard fact of the matter is this: I’m not very comfortable initiating sober sex and when I have initiated such activity in the past (usually drunk or high), it’s been about power and manipulation versus love. It’s been about the mood altering effect, not the act itself. In its own way, sex is just a different manifestation of my addiction. And I don’t quite know how to fix that.

Yes, I know the psychology of sexual abuse. I know that when young girls are victimized (especially preceding puberty) their sexual identity gets twisted up and comes out the other side a very elusive and sometimes damaging aspect of their personalities… and yet, the desire to enjoy sex in a healthy way pervades, however subtly, the rest of our lives.

I will never know what my sexuality might have looked like had it been left to blossom in its own time, in a more acceptable way. As it stands, the twisted version of my sexuality that just is infiltrates every fiber of the woman I have become.. and is forever haunting my relationships.

Tuesday Soundtrack: Lady A