Monday, January 17, 2011

Just adjectives....if I let them be.

This weekend I shocked myself.  Not in a good way.

I went to a supper that our local firemen put on as a thank you to anyone who works for our village.  Rambo went with me.  I rushed to get ready.  I actually completely didn't allow myself to get nervous or scared or anxious.  I stayed excited - new outfit, with Rambo and no kids all night.  I could sleep in the next morning.  I was well on my way to another "leaving the house" success story.

Let it be said that I am NOT exaggerating.  I walked into that firehouse - a room full of at least 50 men - firemen, village workers and townsmen.  I was the ONLY woman besides one other girl I knew.  Walking in first - because I allowed Rambo to hold the door open for me - was nearly nauseating.  Almost torture.  I wanted to turn back around and run - or pass out.  I did not

I took off my coat and bee-lined it to sit next to the other woman.  I survived.

I ate.  Two slices of meat, mashed potatoes and gravy and one piece of cheesecake.  Nothing major.  Nothing spicy.  And yet - about an hour in - I had to look across the table at Rambo and say, "We have to go."

My stomach could not take it.  I was in pain.  Literally swollen.  Hear me now those of you thinking of having a tummy tuck...I am 2.5 years out from my MINI tuck and I still swell and hurt depending on stress and what I eat (high salt).  This night it was the nerves and stress.

Rambo knew I was hurting.  We left. 

I got in the car and he said, "What's the matter honey?"

I kind of got defensive and said, "What do you think?  I had to leave the house.  I'm nervous."

He said, "I didn't think that happened when you knew everyone there."

I said, "Seriously?  I feel like this when I go see my own mother and father."

So there - I said it.  I am afraid to even see my own family.  Probably because I know how my coming over makes my father feel.  I am the cause of his anxiety when I visit...and therefore I feel my own.

I swore I would never be him.  And yet - last night in the car - I pretty much admitted I am. 

And add to that the fact that I just realized I have hidden how intense these feelings are to a man I consider my soulmate for 20 years...which means I am still dealing with shame and still hiding.  I am quite sure I have said over and over that it is hard for me to go anywhere socially - but I just now realized that in 20 years I have never ever really told Rambo how it literally physically and mentally disables me. 

I find it funny that there is one person on this Earth that knows things no one else does about me...but I kept this huge part of me hidden.  It is something I am ashamed of...though I know I shouldn't be.  It is something I don't want to say I feel - because I hate seeing it in someone else who was supposed to love me - in spite of it. 

And many times - that someone else let his anxiety win.

There are days I think I'm beating this.  Kicking its ass.  Curing myself.

And then I realize my own husband has no idea how outings make me really feel...and I realize I still feel the need to hide.

Depression.  Perfectionism.  Impossible standards.  Self-criticizer.  Over-achiever.

Really - can't the above list be enough on anyone's resume?  There's just not enough room to add social anxiety disorder too.

I realize once again that I am a pretender.  I am not my authentic self.  I refuse to be molded by words on a medical chart or my life's resume.

There has got to be more to me than those words and feelings....they are just adjectives.


I will keep fighting.  And it begins with sitting Rambo down and telling him - word by painstaking word - what my mind and body go through each time I leave the house.  I have to let go of the fear that he will love me less once he knows the degree of my anxiety. 

I have to begin somewhere.

And I'm certain this is where.


Karen Butler Ogle said...

(((((Drazil)))) I am so there with you. Yes. You need to tell him. You will find it very freeing to share this huge burden with the person who loves you most. It WILL help. Don't be afraid. Hiding anything make it seem insurmountable. This isn't but you can't do it all alone. I'm so glad you have decided to tell him. Email me if you want to talk. I have some things to share that might help, but would rather not post it publicly. I'm right here though, if you need me. Hugs. :)

Jacquie said...

I also think you need to have a heart to heart with him and let him in. I really believe this will help you move forward. I wish I could take some of your pain away Draz, you are too young to have to deal with this disabling anxiety. My heart breaks for you each time you write about it. {{{HUGS}}}

MrsFatass said...

You knew I'd understand this, right? I could have written it myself. My husband is just learning about all this now, yet I've been his wife for 10 years. I feel the same way visiting my family, my friends. Or even just THINKING about doing those things. I get it.

Miss Vickie "The Queen Bee" said...

Poor thing ;( If it is any consolation, I would have never know you had any issues when I met you in Chicago. You seemed to be very happy and out going, not to mention, beautiful. I bet a huge weight will be lifted off of your shoulders when you confide in Rambo. He is your best friend and he will love you no matter what. Good luck.

amandakiska said...

Tell him. He already knows, but hearing it from you will help him understand.

And you're NOT just like your father. He lets his phobia cripple him and you don't. The difference is all the hard work you've done.

~ Darla ~ said...

Draz, I would have been totally stressed too and even when I tell my husband - he still forgets. Don't hide. You are not the words on a medical chart. You are much, much more than that.

Read said...

Oh Draz. I'm so sorry this happened to you this weekend. I wish there was something I could do to make it all magically go away. Of course you start with Rambo. And your head knows he'll love all the more for letting him in even more as well as being better prepared to protect you when you need it.

And I couldn't agree with Amandakiska any more. You are not just like your dad. Yes, he's passed down some seriously sucky stuff to you, but you work hard eveyr single day to push through it - and most importantly of all to make sure Watermelon and Banana are not affected by you the way you are affected by your dad. And you succeed at that every single day - even on your bad days!! Don't you forget it!

Ms. M said...

Talking to Rambo is definitely the best place to start. And, yes, YOU are absolute positively 100% more than that!

Joey said...

I am everything on that list too. I think my husband recognizes it better than I do. Don't think of it as hiding your true self as much as you trying to cope. You are one of the hardest working people I know. If anyone is trying to break free, it's you. Don't be so hard on yourself.

Sandy Lee said...

I was so worried in Chicago that you would go running into the bathroom and not meet any of us. But you sucked it up and I broke down crying because you actually did it. Yup, you met all of us strangers and didn't throw up (that I know of). I was so proud that you seemed to enjoy yourself the entire weekend, even though I know it must have been one of the scariest things you have ever done in your life. Rambo will so understand anything you tell him because he is just that kind of guy. And there is absolutely no shame in that. Wish I could take some of your pain away. But you will survive. And go forward. Love you girl.

Lanie Painie said...

Poor Drazil. I"m sorry your life is like this. Before I started medication, I really had to FORCE myself out of the house as well. It was a nightmare. Meds help me. I recently took a HUGE step in resolving some anxiety when I was reading Women, Food and God strangely enough.

Realizing that most of my fear is that I will be overcome with emotion in public and then realizing that it has never ever actually happened to me was a big lightbulb moment. Knowing that my emotions are okay, and that emotions can't kill me, and that I can leave whenever I want to - very enlightening as well. I'm a grown up now and don't have to stay in situations where I'm not comfortable. I'm not some little kid being forced into something anymore. I'm big enough to protect myself. I hope you can reach that point too.

No way am I "cured" but certainly I can deal with life a lot more easily after that epiphany.

Shaggs said...

A room full of 50 firemen is my idea of HEAVEN however, i do understand inexplicable emotional anxieties and I do know that a problem shared is a problem halved so be honest with Rambo or someone close to you and end the vicious cycle now with you. All the best girlie - we're all here with you in spirit!

Darlin1 said...

Even though Rambo knows---tell him anyway. It will help both of you!!


Barbara said...

Ah Draz baby, my heart ached reading this.. Maybe this opened the door to Rambo really understanding how hard this is for you.. No one can every really know how you feel, but we can give you support and encourage you to keep trying at it..
I do have one question.. you mention village workers... for some reason I kept hearing YMCA in the background?? Hugs to you sweetie