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A song to take the pain away.

I sat in for a therapy session with R. It was supposed to just be five minutes. Enough to tell her counselor that we’d be starting the process to get her on antidepressants. It is time.

It was not a decision that I came to lightly. There were a multitude of factors. Mostly it was that she was getting so much more explosive, and to me, that meant her pain and hurting were at its max. Unfortunately the only factor that really stuck out for my girl was that her behavior was scarring her brother and his┬átrauma was my highest priority and that’s why I finally agreed to the medication.

This turned a five minute conversation into an hour and a half session.

She hurts. I know this. I never know just how much. And it always catches me off guard. The one person who it would be helpful to be privy to said information doesn’t get to know. It’s just part of the mom deal, I suppose.

Being a parent is hard. Knowing all the logical psychology doesn’t really help much. I mean, sure, in the long run sorta. The short run is a different beast.

The long run tells me that she can lash out at me because she feels safe with me. The long run tells me that she will viciously push me away over and over in order to see if I’ll abandon her.

Depression runs her short game.

It requires her to believe she is nothing and not worth sticking around for. Pushing me away and me following suit gives the depression its validation.

Depression begets depression. We feel like things are shit. That we are shit. We feel worthless so we seek all the ways we’re unworthy. And because we get what we look for, all she sees are examples of her nothingness. The cycle feels impossible to break.

~~~~~~~

Depression is a big fat liar and not even this strong, badass mama can contend with it.

I can show up. Over and over. No matter how much it hurts. No matter how it can bring excruciating heartache and practically break me.

But it can not change her perspective. I learned that today.

It hurt a lot.

I have always known that she is hard on herself. I have always known that she has ridiculous expectations of herself. Expectations that no one could ever meet. I know she thinks in black and white and that she truly believes perfection does, in fact, exist.

I know I have always been the first to say “you did great!” and “what do you mean a B on your chem test isn’t good enough?!” and “of course I’ll be at your musical!” I have supported her through countless endeavors. Providing moral support and transportation and peptalks and space when she asks.

Despite her spending so much time trying to convince me she’s nothing, I haven’t faltered in being her biggest cheerleader.

This is my lens. This is how I see it.

No, I don’t notice every single thing that happens. Yes, there are things she’s told me about that I’ve forgotten. Yes, sometimes I’m annoyed that she needed to be picked up at 5 and she still isn’t ready at 5:40. I’m human. I’m fallible. I make mistakes. I don’t always show up how she prefers, nor do I show up 100% of the time. But I show up. I show up often and to the best of my ability.

And then today, the short run played its game. She tells me that I make her feel worthless. That I make her feel like nothing. That she feels like a nothing because of me. That I have instilled this in her.

No amount of logical psychology could have kept my feet firmly planted. The short run won.

~~~~~~~

Her lens is so much different than mine.

I never knew–I never understood–that the voice in her head feeding her all that bullshit is my voice.

It is a devastating blow.

~~~~~~~

Not all hope is lost. I’m silver lining girl after all. Navigation is required. A whole fuckton of navigation. As well as extra reinforcements for this sad mama’s heart.

Above all else, I show up. I may not be able to contend with her depression through her lens, but I won’t go down without a fight. Especially when it’s my daughter’s life at stake.

I don’t know what that looks like yet. I don’t quite know yet what I need to do. I know that whatever it is, I can do it. I will do it.

First tho, I will cry and grieve.

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Tap on my window; knock on my door.

This hilarious thing happened. Where I was listening to the Rise Together podcast and Rachel and Dave were fucking geeking out about their enneagrams and I wanted in on it, despite having previously been vehemently (read: quietly) against taking the quiz. So I stopped the podcast and took a quiz. And apparently I had gone and decided some expectations beforehand because of all of my growth and accomplishments. I thought my results would give me further fuel to kick ass and take names amidst my personal growth journey.

And then I got a 2.

And I was like “what the shit is this?!”

Here I’ve been working on personal growth and growth mindset and so much me me me for a really long time and now I have this thing in front of me saying I do everything for everyone else and at my expense and to top it all off, I disrespect others’ boundaries.

I was not pleased.

To add insult to injury, I had been chatting with Chris about it beforehand and I felt like he had completely dismissed my everything about it. Which then triggered me to remember the random things he has dismissed in the past that mean something to me.

(Side story. The first time was back in 2014 when I went to a neuromusculoskeletal specialist (MD) who gave me an adjustment I was ill prepared for and I experienced my first…I’m not even sure what to call it. I had to navigate trauma that was released from my body. I sobbed. Like, sobbed. The doctor called me a delicate flower and he said it in such a sweet and loving way that he made me feel loved and worthy and strong in a way I had never felt before.

After I navigated this experience I felt so at peace and free and practically giddy and I relayed the whole thing to Chris on the drive home and he was so….mad. And he was so….oversteppingly protective. And then suddenly I felt invalidated and stupid.

This memory hurts. I know he never wants me to feel hurt. I know he wouldn’t want to be the thing doing the hurting. I also know that the reality is, we hurt people without realizing, especially when we ourselves are hurting.

I can view that part objectively. It doesn’t ease the hurt. Both things exist simultaneously.

I don’t purposefully hold onto this. I have never mentioned it to him, tho we did talk about it shortly after it happened. I don’t hold it over his head. It’s not usually any source of resentment or ill feelings. It’s not a chalkboard checklist of ways Chris has done wrong. It’s mostly just a feeling that resurfaces when I feel triggered by invalidation, if I feel unseen, or if there is something I’m interested in that is…not tangible.

The interesting thing to note here is that Chris has interest in things that he himself deems as hokey. It must hurt a lot to follow something, to take stock in it, to have it have meaning to him….and to also invalidate it as crap. I wish he could see that believing in something “other” or spiritually unexplainable doesn’t make him less than.

So it shouldn’t surprise me when he dismisses love languages and enneagram and whatever else could help give him insight into himself or me or our children or the relationships that intermingle all those things.

Also, I want to say, that I have never been anything less than wholly supportive and compassionate about anything he has ever had interest in, be it Jesus/god, when he was super religious, or cigars or pipe tobacco or vaping, for that stint, or when he was blending tobacco or making snuff (ground tobacco) or blending juices and making his own mods. I was present and stood next to him for all of it. Even when he drank. Twice. I show up every time. He could never say I don’t show up. I am there and I support every endeavor and every mistake and every rabbit hole. I listen through every news blip and political rant and all the Joe Rogan and UCF fights and Sargon of Akkad.

And some days I have real, tangible pain that I don’t feel the same in return. Not all the time. Not every day. But enough.

And I know I should say something. And I would. If I had any idea how to. Without it sounding needy or ungrateful or petty.)

So, back to today. I was trying to talk out my feelings about maybe being a 2 (77%). Or perhaps even being a 5 (74%) and he went the route of talking about coding those kinds of quizzes and how stuff like that is easy, and I…I closed off and shut down.

And there was no good way to say “but I want to talk about me”. And…it was such a 2 thing to do and to think.

And even tho it happened 10 hours ago, I’m laugh-crying about the irony and sadness and amusement of it all. I’m certain that any person who was well versed in 2s would say “oh, sweetheart” and envelop me in their arms and I could cry about how much being alive hurts and how much pressure there is and how I never feel seen and usually I’m okay with that, but today it just hurts, and they would get it.

But I don’t know any enneagram people because I don’t feel like I have any connections with people and it is a chasm that deeply aches.

So I’ll cry my good cry and I’ll “through; not around” and I’ll keep chugging along anyway. ‘Cause while I may be a 2, I’m also a fierce fucking fighter and I refuse to ever feel stuck.