Joe Jackson and such

There’s something going wrong around here

 

Ahhh, 1979.  Many of you weren’t alive then.  I was.  I was living in Germany wild and free on my bicycle, sneaking onto the ferry, eating spaghetti ice and liquor filled chocolates (as one does in childhood).

 

I knew everything.  EVERYTHING.  Being all pre-pre-teeny. And I marveled at it all.  I was the kind of kid who unwaveringly knew that magic was spiritual and real.  I could feel it in my very essence and could see it everywhere. I could tune anything out in an instant in order to experience some magical sense.

 

Fast forward, fuh reahls, to today.

 

All of the wrongs swirling around me, in my brain, on my skin, in my house, with my family, in my town, in my country, in the world etc  are completely overwhelming.  I have had a few tantrums.  Most of mine are internal because they cannot be tolerated in my current personal circumstances, or in writing (not posted bc feeeeeeelings), or on almost daily brief #$%^@&#*$&^%^% phone convos with my endlessly patient life-long soul sister.

 

My life-long practice of flipping the switch and tuning out has a name: disassociation.  It’s so very difficult for me to embrace tuning in for any period of time to purposeful sheer sharp painful unpleasantness.  This is why I cannot tolerate the Zoo.  Also, it recently occurred to me that this is why I excel at creative diplomatic problem solving.  I am compelled to make the difficult things disappear, be worked through, resolved.  I am quick, concise and no nonsense about resolution.  Even if the resolution only happens internally for myself, it happens very quickly.  I do not linger in distress.  Not by will, but by instinctual life-long self-preservation practice which is now ingrained habit.

 

It’s like my “meet-er/great-er” disease that is joked about in various circles I have inhabited throughout my life.  When someone is approaching, or I drive past someone walking on the road etc, I can’t stop myself, I greet them.  I make eye contact.  I say, “hello!.”  I wave.  People receive this as me being super friendly.  I am not.  I am, by practice, anticipating and resolving any potential friction we may experience as two humans, by offering a greeting as a peaceful cleansing wash over our potential interactions.  Again, this is not pre-meditated or meant as a manipulation, it is an ingrained habit I have cultivated over my life as a means for survival.  It’s a tangible example of my switch flipping mechanism at work.

 

The other day in therapy (SURPRISE! I’m in therapy), my therapist was attempting to get me to connect with my own skin as I am currently waiting on results from my latest melanoma biopsy.  She attempts to bring me back to and connect with my physical self.  My brain is supremely resistant. (insert life story here)  It sounds so simple, doesn’t it?  She says things like, “when you place your hand onto your arm, does that feel pleasant or unpleasant?”  I feel like an idiot because I do not know.  I can clearly feel that I am touching my arm (I do not have a neurological disorder), and that my hand is warm, my arm is cool.  I do feel things when I am pointedly asked to think about them.  It would not occur to me to wonder how my hand feels on my arm, to even be aware that I have placed my hand onto my arm, or that my hand was warm and my arm was cool, if I wasn’t asked about it.

However, what has me disturbed is that niggling notion that I am supposed to know if my hand on my arm feels pleasant or unpleasant.

I do not know.

Not in an obtuse or try-to-guess-what-I-am-feeling way. I truly do not know.  Then my hand and arm feel like nothing because I am trying to figure out what is pleasant or unpleasant, and worried that I cannot tell the difference that seems like it should be easy to describe.  Then – WHOOSH – I am gone off into thinking about trees and how do they feel?  My son, how does he feel?  How is his arm?  Does he still have the tick scar? How strong my son looks when he does chin-ups with his gangly boy arms. etc. I bet the universe has arms it is desperately trying to hug us with to quiet all of our earthly crazy fear-based interactions.  Why can’t I feel anything yet?  Is my hand even warm? Gah!  I can’t feel it!

 

So, anywho.

PTSD

Melanoma.  It’s on the skin that I am in.

I hope that therapy is not a pass/fail thing.

 

Which brings us back to Joe:

 

Tonight’s the night when I go to all the parties down my street

I wash my hair and kid myself I look all smooth

Look over there! (Where?!?)…

 

 

Love, Ms Herisme xoxo

 

Hopefully not on the verge of a nervous breakdown

Hopefully still on my NewPath

Que Sera, Sera

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Standing outside of the karate studio, watching my niece’s belt test, after SonHerisme’s belt test, the thoughts that flew through my mind:

 If MrexH were to show up here and threaten to make a violent scene if I did not get into the car right then with him, what would I do?

If I went with him, would this be when he kills me?

If I somehow pulled away from him, would we survive whatever scene he would make?

How fast could those karate instructors get to their telephones to call 911?  Would the karate instructors use karate?

Would whatever was about to occur, ruin the emotional health of everyone present?

How would SonHerisme be?  Who would make sure he got home?

 

I became so eerily frightened, that I ended up pushing my way back into the over-filled karate studio, so that if MrexH did show up, I would not be able to hear him, so there would be no decision for me to make.

Que sera, sera…  Whatever will, be will be

 

Last night, I received two Facetime calls from MrexH’s former company’s Vice President.  How odd.  Probably mistakes.  While we were in professional communication during the initial crisis, once MrexH was arrested, we have had no professional reason to maintain contact.  With all of the legal issues surrounding MrexH, it is understandable that his former company (whom he was also threatening), needed to maintain distance from me.

With the unusual Facetime calls, my thoughts spiraled into:

 Is there any reason this VP would be at the workplace in the evening, and MrexH has gone there?

Does MrexH know where VP lives?

Since I did not answer the Facetime calls, if it is MrexH, is he going to show up at my home in an agitated state?  Is this the night that he is going to kill us?

I became so frightened, that I double checked all the locked doors, set the house alarm early, and left our future to fate.

Que sera, sera…  Whatever will be, will be

 

(spoiler alert– we were not murdered)

 

As I no longer have a therapist, (which might be an issue because, like, anxiety and such from this and that) during an update meeting with SonHerisme’s therapist, it did come up that one of the most difficult things about our situation, is the not knowing.

I do not know what is going on with MrexH.

I do not know if he is still interested in killing us.

I do not know if he has access to a vehicle.

I do not know if he comes into our town on passes from his facility.

I do not know if he is well or unwell.

I do not know what he is capable of.

I do not know anything.

Mental Illness can be very unpredictable – especially with MrexH’s history.

I just do not know how to hope/predict/plan/prepare etc.

So, I figure out ways to cope with moving through each day, hour, minute and onto the next (with a safety plan).  I go through all of the things this moment actually is –

we are safe in this moment,

we have a roof over our heads in this moment,

we are cared for in this moment,

we are clothed in this moment etc.

And if he does arrive to murder us, I have no control over that.

Isn’t it always something odd, something seemingly benign at the time, which turns out to be the foreshadowing of tragedy?

Perhaps I read too much.

 

Que sera, sera…  Whatever will be, will be

The future’s not ours to see

Que sera, sera

What will be, will be

 

Love, Ms Herisme xo

ps. Those of you having similar experiences, please know that I am fiercely holding you in prayers for safety, peace, and comfort

pps.  I love Doris Day!

Room 703

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In June of 2014, I began seeing a therapist.  She is now retired.  She is a lovely person, and I miss her understanding.

 

As I am without insurance and unemployed, I gots ta figure dis out on me own, matey (argh!), for the time being (as you may have gleaned from prior posts).

 

She once asked me to make a list of what I wanted for myself.  Not for my sweet little MrBearwhois8, but just for me.  I still have that list in my fancy, almost empty, journal.  Here is what I was able to pull out of my brain and put on the list:

 

I would like to eat a meal without my stomach hurting.

 

Fast forward to April 2016, and a sweet woman that I know (professional life coach) offered me a step towards self-guidance by suggesting that I write down everything I am good at, no matter how menial (“even if it’s wiping baby’s dirty bottoms” said she).  I still have that list in my fancy, almost empty, journal.  Here is what I was able to put on that list:

 

I am really good at letting my son know and feel how much he is loved.

 

It’s so strange to reflect on this, because I am a HUGE list maker.  In the past, I made lists all of the time.  List-making relaxes me and allows for comfortable brain space relief.

 

I am the person who makes lists of what to pack, what has been packed, labels all of the bags, and carries the list just in case the suitcase goes missing.  It is my way and it has worked for me.

What kinds of lists do you make?

 

Now my brain has been ptsd kerfuffled, and I am re-learning it’s parameters and myself.

 

I am determined to allow myself to make lists again.  Pinteresting lists, notepad lists, room-by-room spreadsheet lists.

 

If you don’t hear from me in two weeks,

I’ll be at the Nationale Hotel in Mexico City, Room 703!

( Victor Velasco)

 

Love, Ms. Herisme xo

MisTweeted & Identity Crisis

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You Guys

I am having a complete identity crisis.

As revealed earlier today (in a private tele convo, so you are just hearing about it now, unless it was you I was speaking to), I could hardly tell when I was having fun in a situation until I was probably 30.  This factoid might enlighten you as a precursor to my current crisis.

I am calling it a crisis, because defining/redefining myself is having a HUGE impact on my ability to function.  Wait, maybe that’s the indicator for needing professional intervention.  Anywho, it is what I am currently experiencing.

I am unemployed

I am existing solely as a caretaker for my son

I do not have a profitable passion

I am not sure that I have any passion

I am not even sure if I like the tea that I am drinking

 

And now, after a few weeks of Twitter silence, the Pakistanis have returned to insult me.

Not really me, of course, because they do not know me.  They think I am some old male controversial Pakistani political celebrity elder statesman kind of person.

I have been ignoring them for months.

Typically what happens is that a Pakistani tweets something ‘@’ ing me, thinking they are connecting with the politician man.  Then someone else retweets, someone else adds comments and retweets, and their friends retweet and their friends retweet and so on.  For a few years, I would even be tweeted by news outlets as if I were this Pakistani man of political influence.

Yes, this has been going on for years.

Yes, I know that I can change my twitter handle.

 

Are you still with me?

 

For a long time, I used these ‘@’ tweets as my own personal entertainment.  Not to mock the feelings of the people tweeting their passionate political views, but more so to challenge myself to find tongue-in-cheek ways of responding that I clearly am not the person the tweet is intended for.

I would reply to the individuals who started the threads, and enlighten them that they were tweeting the wrong person on the wrong continent/time zone/interest level etc.

Then Brooke Shields did that Funny or Die with “Check yourself before you wreck yourself.” I added that as a hashtag to most of my replies when I was mistweeted (poor mistweeted me!).

For example (handles changed to generic @soandso’s for them, and @me for me – words otherwise copied exactly as tweeted)

A Pakistani tweets:

@soandso @soandso @soandso He @soandso has also started rat race of inducting men loyal to him rather then party like @me

I tweet:

@soandso @soandso @ soandso @soandso it’s MY party and I can cry if I want to #wrongsoandso #checkyourself #beesrbuzzin

If the ‘@’ tweets turned scary or inappropriate, I carefully went through the threads and blocked the tweeters.  Sometimes this would take me days (500+ re-tweets).

After a few years, there was a tipping point where it seemed like most people recognized that I am clearly not a controversial Pakistani elder statesman.

One time, maybe three years ago, some men that I corrected in a mistweeted thread, even sent me notes back with some Insha’Allah’s, and a prayer.

On a few occasions I have included women’s advocacy links in my responses – where it seemed appropriate.

 

My family are all terrified that I am now on some government watch list.  Whatevs.  Maybe they can figure out who I am and report back.

 

A very few times on twitter, I have also been mistaken for a Canadian museum society.  Unfortunately, I do not speak or read French, so my potentially amusing responses really failed here.

 

The point is, I do not know what the hell I am doing.

I am not even clear on who I am.

 

Obviously, though, I am not a Pakistani elder statesman or a Canadian museum society.  So there’s that then.

THIS is what PTSD does.  This is what abuse does.

 Take good care of yourself and your neighbors.

Love, Ms. Herisme xo