Thursday, May 10, 2012


It's a big deal. I think about what a big deal it is to me and I am the one who wants it and is initiating it. How big a deal must it be for the one I am seperating from. I am miserable, maybe even more miserable at the moment then before I started this process. But it's the right thing to do: for now, for both of us (even if he doesn't see it), and maybe for the future. There is so much good and so much bad, and they have become so intermixed and complicated that I find myself avoiding the whole situation all together. Avoiding him, avoiding our home, and, even though I never suceed at this one, avoiding thinking about him. I feel so very alone. I must make this choice for me, based off of what I know and what I feel and my experiences. This means I am the only one who even could know if this is the right decision. Others have thier opinions; some supportive, others not. But only my opinion matters when it really comes down to it, and can I trust myself that my decision is the right one when it makes him so sad? Is it my happiness verses his? And if so who am I to make this decision for him? Seperation is supposed to be a step, not a final outcome. It should be able to be temporary or permanent and lasting time dependent on the individuals involved in it. So why does it seem so final to him? And why do I find that so difficult to understand and deal with? "seperation" What the hell does it mean for us?

Sunday, April 22, 2012

One day at a time

I keep meaning to use this blog again but I always let something get in the way. I am going to try to post at least something when I am wanting to. I have so much going on in my life that I need to figure out, and this is helpful. Especially because my Randy is having a hard time with me and I can't really use him to help me with certain situations. I just need to be careful not to turn to other people instead of him.

The point right now is that it's 5:45 am and I can't sleep. My mind is going a mile a minute and I feel like I am going to be sick at any moment from an intense feeling of guilt. Such a useless thing, this guilt. I feel guilty about things that I have no control over, things that maybe I should or shouldn't have done, everyday simple choices. Should I have put more sugar in the cup of tea I brought to a client this afternoon? Did I hurt a friends feelings when they called and I didn't recognize their voice immediately? Did I fill out my paperwork correctly? Everyday stuff that should not be putting me in panic mode. But I have been expertly trained to feel guilty for no reason and even though I have come a VERY long way in this area, it still comes back to haunt me sometimes. I am thinking about all the things I might have screwed up today and battling "turning off" my emotions altogether to escape my thoughts. But of course I can't really "turn off" at will anymore. Stupid emotions.

So, as always, it comes back to the kitchen. It's a mess, and I don't want to be in my own house because of the intensity of dirtiness surrounding me. So I do what I always do to cope. What I wish I didn't have to do but is the only way I know how to get myself out of this cycle: Get drunk and clean until I have worn myself out enough to the point where my body is too exhausted to stay awake.


Saturday, July 16, 2011

Kicking Butt

This morning I awoke thinking about someone who has been a very important part of my life for some time now yet I have never really fully appreciated her for the amazing person she is. I recently realized that I have done that with many people in my life, but this morning I want to talk about Jill.

Jill is many things; creative, sometimes very shy, she is unassuming, so very sweet - consistently, and she is motivated in what she chooses to do and perseveres when obstacles arise. Jill is one of the most physically attractive people I have ever met; she has a classically beautiful face with deep brown eyes and long brown hair, she is strong from the dancing and activities she does - it especially shows in her shapely legs. Jill tries to make everyone around her happy (sometimes to her own detriment) and asks for little to nothing in return. She has strong opinions which she can be hesitant to share, but when she does those around her feel lucky to have listened.

Jill is quiet around me. I don't know if she is quiet around most people...

I am writing what I know of Jill, and I want to know more.

Jill is dating my little brother Westley. I love my brother SO much and I am so thankful that he has someone as wonderful as Jill in his life. Over the years the two of them have been dating off and on, but always friends. Jill and I have spoken about relationships, life, and of course my brother. I always feel good when Jill is around, but I can't quite put my finger on why.

Lately I have had more frequent opportunities to be around Jill since Westley moved in with Randy and I (happy face). Last night she was frustrated, and she said she was grumpy because she couldn't get to sleep. She really wasn't very grumpy, but her behavior did change slightly reflecting that she was frustrated. I don't think I had ever seen Jill like this, and I was happy she felt comfortable enough to express what she was feeling around me. There was a moment where she flopped in a chair and kinda made a face. It was this moment that came to me this morning...

I think sometimes you can only really get to know people when they let you in on the bad emotions as well as the good. That's how you can make a connection and feel closer to others. I have completely taken Jill for granted, and I want to start appreciating her more. I don't know if my behavior toward her will change much, but I hope to be able to get to know her more through the variety of emotions she feels.

A few months ago I spoke to a co-worker/supervisor about an overlap one of my other supervisors had written on me. I felt my supervisor hadn't had all the information when he marked me down in a specific performance area and I was seeking advice on how to handle the situation. I was pretty frustrated when I explained what had happened and then I declared "I kicked butt on that part!" My co-worker as always gave me excellent advice and then she said something even more important: "Nicole" she said, "I feel like this is the first real conversation I have had with you, and I like it." She explained that it was good that I was being passionate, and showing frustration, and sharing that part of myself with her. I didn't really understand, but I think it makes more sense now.

Thanks Jill for helping me understand and for sharing a part of yourself with me

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Objects in motion...

We were hanging out in the living room and basically having a super logie day. We watched a movie, some shows on Netflix, and played a game of Phase 10. That day I had simply woken, gone to the couch, and flopped. It was now almost evening and I was loving the day. But then the time came to move...

It started innocently enough: Emily said she felt like getting up and doing something and Randy began giving suggestions - all of which meant I would have to leave the comfort of my living room couch. When things started getting out of hand (there was talk of seeking out an "adventure") I explained how I was feeling about the situation. This is a goal of mine - to be assertive and listen to my body and emotions and clearly communicate my desires. "I don't want to move," I calmly explained. "I want to do something, and I am also sick of lying here, however I want to avoid moving at all costs." I felt I was being reasonable, I had made myself clear (even if it didn't quite make sense), however my two companions did not exactly respect my wishes...

After more conversation (and Randy and Emily foolishly trying to make me see logic and find things I would be motivated to move for) I made a dramatic declaration: "I just don't want to move!" They looked at me, looked at each other, then back at me. "Well than we will move you!" came the response. They immediately grabbed my feet and arms and began carrying me to the bathroom despite my many protests. After being deposited into the bathtub my husband began undressing me and asked my sister to grab him a sponge. Below is a replication of what I saw:

In this moment I realized that I was now perfectly fine in the bathtub and could take a shower independent of any more "help." In fact I was ready to go out and do things that required moving; even adventurous things! I was now in an environment where I knew what to do and there were plans for what would happen after that. Life was good.

I was also forced to recognize the ridiculousness of the entire situation. I had been adamantly avoiding having to move, however once it was done I was perfectly fine. I always knew I didn't like transistions, even the small ones such as moving from the bed to the living room or from my desk at work to the copy machine. But times where I know exactly what to expect due to it being an everyday routine (for example going to bed - one of my favorite transitions) are never a problem for me.

I spoke with my counselor about this issue later that week. It came up during a discussion about my lack of timeliness. My counselor is amazing and does an excellent job of taking things I know about myself and want to change, and then tying them to other things as well as pointing out just how flawed my logic is. I came away from our conversation feeling more knowledgeable about my behavior yet also wondering how I could possibly change it. When I was young things were always very unpredictable, and usually in the bad way. All my siblings would literally hide from the crazy woman who gave birth to us as much as possible because if we were noticed she would do something punishing to us. It might take the form of her giving us a chore, reprimanding us for one of any real or imagined wrongs we had done, or simply feeling guilt in her presence.

At this point I feel it is essential to point out that I am a behavioral consultant by profession and I think in terms of Antecedent - Behavior - Consequence constantly.  The antecedent is whatever happened before the behavior we are looking at. The behavior is just that. And the consequence is whatever happened after the behavior. If the behavior increases in frequency than whatever the consequnce was was reinforcing (either positively by adding something "good" to the situation like giving the person something they want (candy?) or negitively by taking something "bad" away from the situation (stopping an annoying sound?). Conversely, if the behavior decreases in frequency than whatever the consequence was was punishing (either positively by adding something "bad" to the situation like an annoying sound, or negitively by taking away something they want (candy?)).

In the same way that money is reinforcing to me because it is consistently paired with things I want, the crazy woman who gave birth to me is punishing to me because she has been consistently paired with feeling guilt. To take it a step further, money is a secondary reinforcer for me and the crazy woman is a secondary punisher. Therefore, even being in the presence of this woman is punishing to me because of the history I have had with her, and I am sure this was true when I was a child as well.

To take this a step further this means that as a child, I was in constant fear of being in the crazy woman who birthed mes' presence, and any time I moved or transitioned from a location where she was absent, I was more likely to find myself in her presence. This inconsistently punished my behavior of transitioning or moving locations, making me less likely to transition and causing anxiety whenever I did.

Antecedent - being in a location absent of the crazy woman
Behavior - moving to a different location
Consequence - possibly being in the presence of the one who birthed me resulting in feeling guilty, getting chores, etc... 

The outcome? My transitioning behavior has been punished over and over again resulting in a decrease in this behavior. I have had 17 years of my transitioning behavior being punished; no wonder I avoid it as much as I do!

The question I have now is this: how am I to undo 17 years of history?

Monday, May 30, 2011

Week 2 = Goals Met!

Yep, this is the second week of my "self improvement" (aka - trying to regain and maintain my sanity) and I have met my goals both weeks! The requirements are getting slightly more difficult, but I think I can handle it. I have a bag of neatly wrapped sexy panties and a box of fun make-ups to choose from each week that I meet my goals so I am pretty motivated!

Anyway, here the next picture I would like to talk about:
At the time of this picture I was in awe. I took this photo because when I saw this waterfall it was truly the most beautiful thing (at the time...possibly due to some mind altering substances) that I had ever seen. I couldn't take my eyes from it. I was standing in front of this waterfall not caring that I was with a group of people who were ready to move on or that I was probably looking rather dumb and disproportionately engrossed with the sight. This is quite a feat for me - I have been trained since the day of my birth to be aware of others needs and avoid upsetting others or even bringing attention to myself in any way. But here I didn't worry about such things as I typically do. Here I simply enjoyed the moment. I also realized that I love water. I love the way it flows, the way it feels, the way it reacts to the environment. Whenever I see a work of art that has water flowing in or on it in some way I have always yearned to feel it and touch it. It holds special meaning for me.

I do not have many memories of my childhood, but each one that I do have is very important to me. Perhaps because I remember so little... When I was younger I would frequently get in trouble because I would take too long in the shower. "You should never need more than two minutes tops to do what needs to be done in there!" I was told. But I only recently remembered why I loved the shower and the reason I wanted as much time as possible in that small space. I had forgotten that in the shower I was a powerful Goddess! I ruled the water and bent it to do my will. With a flick of my wrists I sent searing droplets against my enemies, my hair had a life of it's own with the power of the waters flow, and my body was caressed by the hot wetness in a way that made me feel beautiful. But most importantly, with one backward step, I ceased to exist in the world of solids. I was one with the water, melding with it as my tears ran in small streams to the larger puddle at my knees.

I am thankful that I have this memory, even as I type it is difficult to keep my eyes dry. My tears gave me power then, but do they do the same now? I have a multitude of coping mechanisms that saved my life as a child, but they are not effective now. Now I CAN feel instead of turning off. I don't have to cry in an attempt to dissolve  into the world around me. I can feel. I should feel. I don't want to, but it is no longer needed for me to turn off. After all, no one can hurt a Goddess.

Friday, May 27, 2011

I have no idea what I am doing...

Quite literally. Right now. Although what I am trying to figure out is how to do this whole life thing. Now don't get me wrong, I am a living person (I know many who might immediately picture a crazed and confused Zombie writing this blog). However, apparently I am doing my "living" the wrong way. To be clear, "wrong" is not the "right" word, but it's the word I am using.

Let me explain: I grew up in a somewhat upside down world. "What is a right side up world?" one might ask, "doesn't it all depend on what Continent we live on and even then isn't the idea of up and down irrelevant in space*?" "Why yes, that's a very good point!" I would respond and after thinking on it I would have to find a different approach. Let the thinking commence....
(and yes I am having a conversation with myself here...I guarantee this won't be the first time)

Perhaps the best way to explain is to start with information on the cause of my current distress; my "mother."  She gave birth to me and I lived in the same house as her for 17 years so in that sense she is my mother, however from this point on I will refer to her as "the crazy woman who gave birth to me." It is much more fitting - trust me.

And now another problem arises with beginning my explanation for my current state by explaining the root of my problems - you see I don't want to talk about the crazy woman who gave birth to me. And in fact, I don't have to! I have a Doctor's note to prove it. In fact, I have a Doctor's note saying that I need time off work due to my diagnoses. That's kinda why I'm writing this. I am using this time off to learn how to live life the "right" way, but this task is proving difficult.

And really what I am only now realizing is that I cannot explain the unexplainable. I don't even understand what I lived through so how could I make someone else understand it? Yuck :P

Next idea: I will just skip the introduction and go straight to the point of this! Who cares if it all seems out of the blue, stupid, and doesn't make a bit of sense! This is mine so I will make it functional for me.

Here is a picture:

The picture itself is not important. What's important is what I was doing while I took this picture. I was feeling. REALLY feeling. I was crying because that is how my body responds when I feel emotions. Lately I have been crying a lot because I am feeling more and more. But the difference between this moment and the one before is that in this moment I WANTED to feel. I didn't try to wipe my tears away. I didn't disassociate or "turn off" as I like to call it. My crying didn't escalated into a panic attack. I just let it happen. I tried to identify what emotion I was feeling and why, and I think I did a pretty good job. I was feeling relief. I had been having a really tough time at work and I was on my way home from the job I love for the last time this month. I was getting the break I needed so much, and although I felt like I was weak and failing at life, I also was so relieved that I was going to be able to have time to really work things out without it negatively affecting my clients. I realized I was free of obligations, free of having to play a part, free to learn who I am outside of work, but mostly, I was free to really FEEL.

*Note: It always seemed strange to me that on Star Trek spaceships were always oriented the same way when they met in space. Wouldn't it be much more realistic the see the Klingon Bird of Prey approach the Starship Enterprise at a 95 degree angle?