I don’t even know where I last left off, but here I am. I know, the world has been waiting with breath that is bated for me to return to writing…but no. Unlikely. I’ve been still but not without chaos. My brain has been a veritable war zone, and only recently have I kind of-sort of-somewhat broken the bind of constant stress. I’ve been repeating a few mantras which have aided in that endeavor–something along the lines of, “The children nap because they are tired and need to sleep, not because I need a break.” “Feeding my children healthy food is necessary.” “My responsibilities are not burdens.” Does that give you any idea of how bad my mental state had gotten over the last few months? I’ve even considered going back on the antidepressants, but I refuse. Who knows what permanent damage that may have caused. I certainly don’t want to exacerbate this creeping ill-will (toward myself). No one knows that, by the way. I’ve not told anyone, until now, that returning to what basically amounted to an ossified state appealed to me more than feeling all the things, all the time. I even cried recently. I suppose using the term “cry” is a misnomer, since it was more like Earth-shattering sobs, muscle spasm and dislocated ribs and all. That’s noteworthy because it’s been almost a year since I’ve shown any physical signs of emotional well-being (or a lack thereof). That day was stressful, the day I cried. I suppose that goes without saying. After months and months of pushing away someone I love very much, that person finally snapped and uttered some pretty nasty things to me. Not nasty like, “You’re fat, I hate you,” but nasty-such-as, “You have been making some very poor decisions and treating me with complete contempt for no reason and it all borders on blatant abuse. I don’t know if I want to be around you,” sort of thing. It hurt. A lot. It hurt my ego, it shook the very foundation of the person I thought I was, and in general sent me on a wild goose hunt for whatever the hell is wrong with me that caused me to behave like an asshole all these months. Update: I still don’t really know where exactly I went wrong, but through massive amounts of behavior modification (which really amounts to taking an extra few seconds to think about what I want to convey and, well really, behaving in the opposite manner of which I am accustomed) I’m making progress.
And speaking of stress, let’s talk about my diet, shall we? Sweet mother of God I have never eaten worse in my life. Even while growing up and my mother wasn’t aware of GMOs or pesticide residue in conventional produce or hormones in meat and milk, I think I was more nourished. I’m quite sure it’s contributed–heavily–to whatever fugue state this is. Holy refined sugar, Batman. Only just yesterday did I finally break the cycle. It’s strange and fascinating to me how habits develop–good or bad–and how returning to an earlier state (say, one where you existed for most of your adult life) seems so foreign after you’ve engaged in a few (okay, most all) poor choices for two months. I’m lost in the kitchen again. Of course, I still have an innate ability to cook and throw together ingredients and seasonings to make something delicious, I proved that last night (GF vegetarian mushroom stroganoff, anyone?). However, of late I’ve felt hungry and reached for the most convenient, unhealthy food I can muster. Mainly sugar-filled. Ice cream–and not even the good kind. Store-brand. Ugh. Lots of Japanese takeout. I’ve hardly cooked from home, and when I have it’s been minimal effort. Basically opening a can or two. I’ve let my milk kefir go mostly dormant (still feeding it daily, of course) so no gut-boosting green smoothies. Oh, the humanity, it might say.
Oh, also? Weight gain. I’m trying not to stress too much about this because I know it will take time to reverse the damage I’ve done to my body. I have accumulated fat, though. It’s embarrassing. Today I took the kids to the park (because of the impending rain we were blissfully alone in a huge baseball field with a semi-locked gate) and after we were done frolicking for almost two hours I took the kids to a play area for some lunch (I ate salad and about three bites of soup, they ate grilled chicken and fruit–and some of my salad, of course) and as I was sitting in my workout clothes while they romped about I could see my gut hanging over my pants. Not appealing in the least bit. I wasn’t affected by my lack of makeup or by my stringy, sweaty hair. It was the sudden realization that I have gained a hell of a lot of weight in a short amount of time that gave me major pause. It’s scary how easily things could spiral out of control if I let them.
But I wont. Or at least this time I was able to stop myself before things got too out of control. The thing is, I know from where all this stress stems. It’s Andy. Always Andy. I can’t (or shouldn’t) speak much about the impending divorce or go into specifics involving our interactions, I’m not an idiot. I know he could easily use it against me in court, if he were so inclined (and I believe he would be). But just so anyone who happens to read this knows not to worry about anything significant in my existence causing such horrid, unbelievable angst…I said it. He’s an [insert word here]. It’s honestly like an emotionally draining roller coaster being within five yards of him. Trying to always do what’s best for the kids, even in the face of animosity–always animosity–I guess it just wore me down. The stoicism couldn’t last forever, could it? Not when you’re being called names for absolutely no reason. I didn’t even break down in front of him. Nothing in my behavior is worth noting on his end except exemplary patience and [feigned] respect. It’s worn me on the inside. A piece of fruit you bite into and only after you’ve tasted the bitterness do you realize it’s got this horrific inner-rot. But I’m trying. I’m clawing my way out of the abyss, minute by minute. I love my children. They are my light at the end of this wretched tunnel, and I’ll escape. Maybe not unscathed, but still not so bad. Everything will be fine. Someday soon.