Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth." Genesis 9:13

Thursday, June 19, 2008

And now I know

For weeks I've not been sure if I've been depressed. I've been borderline, but have been deciding against, based on knowing my thyroid is probably messed up and that I've been working on extremely hard topics in counseling. Plus I've just been hoping it would go away. I know that this is, as usual, not going to be a good place for me to have issues. My doctor REALLY doesn't want me on any more antidepressant. I REALLY don't want me on any more Seroquel, because I'm exhausted at a lower dose just as much as the higher one.

Today I had yet another painful counseling session, in which we didn't even hit the painful thing I've been saving up for 2 weeks because everything else kind of came first. It turned into a conversation that's been had many, many times but never so directly: my handling and emotional processing of criticism hurts me. And never before have I seen so clearly what a major part of my issue is--I have not yet moved past the abused child who was not criticized without nastiness or physical punishment. When someone criticizes me, especially when it is unfair, I tend to react like they are symbolically going to hit me.

I realized this in a way I don't think Dr. Mind noticed, and which I probably still need to talk about: he gave me a very matter-of-fact listing of examples of my not doing well in this area. I listened and nodded, there's not really much to argue about as he is right. But the trick was that as he talked I realized I fully expected him to get angry with me. I got scared. I realized first that I actually DO trust him, and that even so it was hard to hear this very mild critique of the last year because I was scared he'd get mad. Which in reality has occurred and I've survived although when it's happened when I'm not manic it's been hard. The fear was because that is my immediate response to anger (non-professionally). I react the same as I did when I was a child and anger was dangerous.

So I guess now along with everything else I need to learn a few more things. I need to not equate criticism with anger. I need to not fear either of those things. Because I know I react wrong. But I didn't know I wasn't reacting to the wrong thing.

It took me hours to sort through all this. I actually went shopping since it was cool enough for me to go in and out today and I needed baby gifts. Once I started I hit a really good sale and did some Christmas shopping too, since I have no way of ever knowing that I'll have income at Christmas. I actually got several things. The entire time my brain was churning.

The next step is seeing Dr. Brain this week and hopefully she can do something useful without drugging me. And next week I'll have to tell Dr. Mind the rest of the story. Which scares me also because I feel like I'm now getting bogged down with too much at once, and yet it's all inter-related. I feel like it would help to see him more for a week or two, yet logistically that's really, really hard.

And then at the end we had a new version of the conversation that triggered this post a year ago, a conversation that has been food for thought for nearly a year. It was a little startling because I get little praise that direct from him.

For now I need to sleep. Well, my cat just came to tell me I need to FEED THE CAT and then maybe sleep, if she believes this is the best option after careful reflection.

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