First Day

Just breath! That is what I keep telling myself. Parking is a big issue on any campus, so I am here really early. My first class is not until this afternoon.

I have already been to tech support to get my computer online. I just have to figure out a way to pace myself so that I am not completely overwhelmed by everything.

I have already found a quiet lounge area to sit in and brought my lunch and water for the day. I may start working on questions for a class tomorrow. That way I will not have to worry about it tonight.

At least it is quiet and not crowded. So far, so good😊

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Beginning

Tomorrow, I will start classes. I am so nervous about all of this. Even though my class is not until the afternoon, I have to get to school in the morning in order to park. I guess things could be worse.

My new psychiatrist is keeping up with me. He seems to be ok. At least he asks questions and we discuss how I am doing. I even have the feeling that I want to try and draw again. I have not felt that way for a while now. 

There are many questions ahead. Can I handle the work? Can I handle the crowded and loud campus? Am I going to be able to use my coping skills to get me through?

I know that I should be taking one day at a time or I am going to be overwhelmed and give up. That or my symptoms will get worse and I will be put in the hospital. This is all up to me. I have a list of skills and I need to use them. I also need to try to get the most out of therapy so that things do not build up.

When I Can

The first day that my kids go back to school is always hard. I am usually not able to be there. They live an hour away and then their buses are an hood apart. 

Today, I was able to take them to get a hair cut. I actually felt like a mom! They love their hair cuts and I was able to have a picture.

I have to take advantage of when things come along that I can do. Sometimes it is the smallest of things💕

Making a Schedule That Works for Me

I am trying to take classes again this semester. Having a mental illness makes it a lot harder. Most colleges can handle a learning or a physical disability and make modifications. They are obligated too. For some reason a mental illness is still not a disbility to some staff at colleges. The college is not willing or does not know how to make accommodations.

That is where I have to judge things for myself. I cannot handle large classes. With the exception of one class, none of my classes have over 25 students. I know that I have to get to class early and find a seat in the front row. Preferably on the end. This limits the distractions and my hyper vigilance.  I am not focusing on what all of the other students are doing.

I still have to make time to see my therapist and my psychiatrist and take my medications. I have even planned out how I am going to eat and what I will pack for the day.

Sure there are going to be stressors. I am certain that I will get overwhelmed. Yet I still want to try. I want to see if I can handle this. If I can then I can handle another semester and then maybe another.

There is only one day where I am at school all day. That will be hard. I am not sure yet what I will do on that day. I will need to see how the classes go. One of the classes is only one day a week. That should help.

I am sure that I will continue to write about all of this. 

Where is the Safety Net

Lately, I have been struggling. This is always a rough time of year for me. My eating disorder behaviors have increased. I also have little hope that the future is going to get better.

For the past week, I have had to call my doctor and report in on my weight and how my mood is for that day. Then I have to say how much I am drinking. Drinking enough has always been a struggle for me. I am still getting used to drinking.

Then there are my kids. Child support seems to always be an issue with my ex anymore. So I did something about it and took it into my own hands to be modified. Right now, I can barely afford to see the kids with what I am paying. I have a feeling that the number is going to go up. That will be a problem. Between my doctors and medicines, it is a lot of money every month. I need a car to see my kids and a phone to communicate with them. If my obligation goes up, I am not sure how I am going to make all my bills.

There is not a safety net for either of these issues. It is more like climbing a mountain. Go up a little and then fall back. I will continue to keep pushing to climb up, yet the reality is that there are times that I am going to fall. There are some things that are out of my control.

Daily Reporting

Lately, I have been struggling with my eating disorder. My doctor has become pretty strict with me. I have to call every other day with my weight and how I am doing. It is not easy for me to feel so exposed.

School starts next week. A course is already up. This class has an online text that I am not sure how to download. I guess that I will figure it out or get someone to help me that works at the school.

My ex is his typical self. The kids are supposed to come this weekend. I am not sure about my oldest. He still does not talk to me. I am hoping that one day that will change. At least my younger two still talk to me and want to visit. I have to focus on my relationship with them.

This is one of the last days that I will not have anything to do for a while. I am scared of having to be around so many people on campus. It is going to be important for me to find somewhere that I can by myself if I need to get away from the noise. It is also important that I feel that I am safe.

For the rest of the day, I am going to enjoy reading both for school and for myself. I am going to make sure that I take care of me. That will allow me to be present for all of the other things that will be coming up.

Slipping **May Trigger**

Each day seems to be a new horror with my ex. Now, he has decided that him and his new wife will be the ones that go to my children’s graduations. None of the kids are graduating this year. I am so tired of being harassed and put down. The kids hear that I do not contribute, yet I pay my child support every month. They are told that I am crazy and a bad mom.

I thought that it was bad when my oldest stopped talking to me and coming to visit. Now, my daughter who wanted to spend the summer with me is no longer speaking to me. It is just a lot to take in. I cannot control what they are being told about me. 

Because of all of this, I have turned to dysfunctional eating habits and over exercising. Yesterday, I felt like I was going to pass out. My doctor noticed and is giving me a chance to get back on track. If I do not then I will have to go inpatient. That will derail all of my plans.

At least he gave me stages. I do not have to do everything at once. By the time school starts, my head should be a little clearer.

Right now there is that fine line in front of me. I know the right path. The path that will keep me healthy. The problem is that the other side has such a strong pull. It is where I feel the most control. Right now, I am taking one part of the day at a time and trying to keep the goals set for me. My first check in is tomorrow. Hopefully, I will have good news.

A Couple Weeks

School and dance begin again in a few weeks. I have to admit that I am scared. Scared that I am not going to be good enough or smart enough to complete my classes and scared that I will not fit in at dance.

I have always had that fear. That I do not fit in. That people can see everything that has happened to me just by looking at me. I have a hard time relating to new people. My life has not taken the same course as most. 

Maybe I will not have to worry. Maybe people will not ask. Many of them will be to young to worry about kids or past work history.

At dance, there will be familiar faces who accepted me last year. I just have to relax and that is really hard for me. By Thursday, I need to think of some things that I can do at school between classes. I am sure that I will have a ton of work.

Over the next couple of weeks, I just want to relax and enjoy my husband and kids. That is the plan anyway.

A Little Better

Maybe the change in meds has finally helped a little or the visits with the new member of my treatment team. It could be a little of both.

I am taking one day at a time again. Sometimes that is all that I can do to keep moving forward. Reading and journaling have been vices for me over the past few days.

My kids are always going to be a part of my life. At this point, they are able to choose how much they want to be a part of mine. My oldest is moving farther and farther away. Hopefully, he will come around, yet I am not sure that it will be soon.

The start of a new school year is getting closer as well as the start of dance. Both bring unique benefits and challenges. School will be a chance to work toward a possible career. That is if I can handle it. Dance is always a question of whether or not my body will cooperate. Only time will tell for both.

Watching the Olympics has been great! Seeing all of the athletes in their events. I also know someone who is there right now and is posting pictures on Facebook! The area looks beautiful! 

Tonight and tomorrow are quiet. Maybe I will go and use the bike at the gym for a little bit tomorrow. Monday is going to bring the beginning of a new week and more discussions with my treatment team about where I am at and if I can be safe.

The Reality of My PTSD

PTSD can be caused by many different types of traumas. Triggers can be different for everyone. My PTSD came from years if mistreatment as a child. The people around me were not always safe and did not always say the most encouraging things. Then there was a bad marriage and more instances as an adult.

Life today is hard. I live in the same neighborhood as my abusers. In fact, I often see them. I have no choice but to pass and to see the same places where things occurred. 

I have scars on my body from self-harm. I am reluctant to trust people and therefore have a hard time making and keeping friends. I keep people at a distance.

The pain is often overwhelming. I did not choose this. Sometimes I wish that I could just make myself ok. That I could just be like everyone else, yet I cannot. To many things have happened. 

People do not see the struggles that go on inside of me. The struggle to tell what happened to me and to deal with all of the emotions behind it. The internal feelings in my body. All of that is invisible. None of that is acceptable to share in our society.

So, I try to go on, yet sometimes I cannot. Sometimes, I slide backwards and need extra help and support. Right now is one of those times. Being honest with my treatment team is hard. I just want to tell them that everything is alright and work on what happened. Yet safety comes first.