I do. I drive myself absolutely insane. I obsess over crazy shit other people seem to have no problem recognizing as inconsequential. Not me. I have to gnaw on them like a richly marrowed, meaty, femur of a freshly killed, strong young cow, still warm from the slaughter.
I have so many examples I could spend the other half of my life writing them all out for you. Or, is that for me? Either way, just a basic list would probably take up half my life to put ‘ink to paper’ as we used to say in the good old, pre-computing age.
Suffice it to say I am a bit loopy to put it nicely. This habit of downgrading myself for this and any number of other well established reasons are called “ants” by my current therapist. No shit. Even with a therapist and a couple of decades of therapy behind me, I am still hounded by those every creeping, skin-crawling, 6-legs everywhere inside my brain, “ants” (Automatic Negative ThoughtS).
Sometimes, I pretend there is a large multi-storied apartment building. In the penthouse I have, much to my own surprise, installed those people that hurt me the most in residence. I pay their rent. I clean their crap. I shop for them. I provide them all the nicest things I myself do not and never will have. In short I am letting them live in my head rent free.
Now, I know this. I am fully cognizant that this is not one of my better habits. I do it all the same. On really good days, actually really bad days, I have to work really hard to evict them from the apartment head space I subconsciously, and consciously let/help them live. It takes a HUGE amount of mental energy to force their eviction.
Sometimes, I just have to open the door, stand there and make a grand gesture of sweeping my arm, hand, fingers, and all welcoming them out into the street. Much like a dream-scape though this is a penthouse many stories up (I have lots of renters deserving eviction.) their front door conveniently opens onto the rugged, rough-hewn, stone cold street of emptiness they earned.
Most days I have to bring a full arsenal of assistance with me to supplant these particular squatters. The squatters, during any particular period of stress in my life, tend to be the same group I encountered in real life in 2001-2004. If any of them ever find their way to this blog I am fairly certain they will have no problem figuring out I mean THEM. Yeah, YOU, you lying, conniving, spin-doctoring, arrogant, sniveling bastards.
Stress? What me? Stress!?
The theme of my life. Stress is actually too soft a word for what I feel. It is a feeling, a chemical reaction, a physical reaction that sets up in my muscles so tight they bunch up into knots requiring some serious drugs to help relax them. Actually, I rarely ask for or use drugs to assuage the physical pain. I learned a long time ago how to live with and incorporate the ever-increasing, and completely real and valid (I have to add that the pain is valid.) and excruciating pain. I’ll never know how anyone could come up with a phrase like excrutiatingly wonderful. The two together are a death sentence.
“Ants” are those unbidden thoughts that pop-up in my brain trying to cut me up into useless little peices. I am a fighter. I don’t often win in real life. I like to think that I do. But,
I recall only once in my life that I had to go to the emergency room due to the pain of the muscle cramps. “Stress related” muscle wars is more like it. Still, after a 4:00 am shot of Demerol or some other equally brain stupefying injectable drug, and a prescription for Flexeril, I went to work at my job of 2-weeks that day. I had a training that morning that I just could not miss.
I was driven to and picked up from the office that day. I did my best not to fall asleep during the training. Largely, because I know I snore. Not a cute little infant snore so short and soft you barely wonder if you even heard it or just smile lovingly down at the amazing little creature nestled warmly in your arms. My snores are the freight train a’coming, coming ’round the bend. I didn’t want to embarass myself. I did ask my neighbor to elbow me if anything even remotely started to escape from me. Oddly, enough I dropped off a number of times. Nobody seemed to notice. Not even (thank you god) the trainer noticed. So, I survived that day. I got home ate, vegetated on the couch for a little bit, and went to bed like a rock on a stone.
Because, I was absolutely sure if I did not show up at work I would loose my job. I put THEM above ME. That was pretty stupid. Even as I being driven to work through my drug induced stupor I was still questioning myself: Do I go or stay home? PICK ONE DAMN IT!
I often think I am decisive. The reality is that I am very INdecisive. AAAARRrrrrggggghhhh. Or to put that more succinctly, shit. This was nearly 20 years ago and I am STILL buggin’ myself over it. If I could let it go I would. Maybe someday. Maybe.