Resentment, thy name is….

I am finding I’m having a tough time dealing with some people’s success. I’ve become bitter and resentful, particularly when I perceive that someone whose path has been clear their whole life has the gall to tell anyone how they, too, can be successful or otherwise tell them how to live.

Shut the hell up.

I get annoyed on several levels.  First, there’s the person who’s never lacked anything a day in their life who has the nerve to criticize others for not being able to completely overcome their shortcomings.  Case in point….I once worked with a man, someone I considered a friend, almost like a brother, who went on a rant one day because some woman had made the news because her son had been killed in the crossfire of a drive by shooting in her neighborhood.  My co-worker didn’t want to hear of her sorrow…”why didn’t she just move, if she’s in such a bad neighborhood?”  Well, gee, member of the most privileged race and gender whose toe has never dipped below upper middle class, maybe you have the money to physically move your family and pay for a more expensive apartment in a safer neighborhood after coughing up a security deposit and first and last months’ rent, but this woman, obviously, didn’t.  Truthfully, I didn’t know her situation, I was just so irritated that this man couldn’t see past his own experience.  “I’d move, why didn’t she?”

I worked with another person, a woman who was NEVER my friend, who also was completely out of touch with anyone else’s problems.  Zero empathy.  Rich parents, still married, no major problems, illnesses, crimes, etc. that affected her family.  I lost track of the “let them eat cake” comments that she made. She married a wealthy man, and when she had their first child, was able to become a stay at home mom.  A spoiled, shallow woman who no longer had to work in a cubicle and more than likely hired someone to take care of her children.  Puke.

Then there’s the youth, someone whose got the energy and the drive and the opportunities, living in the time that we do, to do far more with their lives than I could have even had I not been forced to perform oral sex on my babysitter at age 6.  Even if all those years of abuse had not happened, when I was in my early 20’s, no one was making their living doing half the cool things kids are able to work at now.  There are kids making a living off of posting videos on YouTube, for pete’s sake.

Lastly, there’s the broken ones, the misfits like me, who are open about their pain, their losses, their mental health issues, etc. These are the ones I least begrudge their successes, but they are painful to watch. Jenny Lawson, The Bloggess, whom I’ve mentioned before, is  screamingly funny. She lives in Texas with her husband and daughter and makes a living as a writer. Her first book has just been released. And she suffers from depression, anxiety, and admits to self-harming. And I literally feel a pain in my stomach when I read about her accomplishments. Her book is on the New York Times’ bestseller’s list. She appeared on CNN. She made a short with  Wil Wheaton and Jeri Ryan. She’s awesome. And I think I hate her.

This may seem like a non-sequitur, but I read an interesting article on victims in our society.  It pointed out how hurtful it is to go to the politically correct extreme of never blaming the victim.  That’s not to say there aren’t some people who truly meet the definition of 100% blameless victim.  Children usually fall into that category. But smokers who develop lung cancer?  Many have cried “victim” and sued the tobacco companies.  As loathsome as “Big Tobacco” is, do these people hold no responsibility themselves?  What about the chances we take?  What about people who go out and get drunk and do dumbass things.  They drive and get themselves and their passenger killed, like Jackass star Ryan Dunn did.  I read of so many people acting as though this was a “tragic accident” and “poor Ryan”.  He was driving over 100 miles an hour, drunk.  He not only killed himself, but his passenger.  He paid the ultimate price for his stupidity, as did his friend who was stupid to get in the car with him, but his loved ones continue to pay.

And, don’t hate me on this, but the whole Natalee Holloway thing pisses me off.  Yeah, it sucks that she was murdered, but for an underage girl to go out drinking and get in a car with boys she barely knew in a foreign country….it boggles the mind.  And it happens all the time.  This article I read describes this kind of victim as such:

Victims With Minor Guilt: This category includes victims who with some thought, planning, awareness, information, or consciousness could have expected danger and avoided or minimized the harm to themselves… choosing to get drunk (the minor responsibility is for electing to be completely helpless and unconscious, at the full mercy of others, in a situation that has the potential to be dangerous).”

Another part that stood out to me…

“alleviating all women or any victim from any and all responsibility to predict, prevent, or even unconsciously invite abuse, is to reduce them to helpless, incapable creatures, and in fact, re-victimizes them.”

So, now is when we get to the point. When I was six, I was a victim. 100% innocent. My abuse continued until we moved to Texas, when I was nine.  Then my brother started bullying me.  I’d get smacked and pushed around at the drop of a hat.  I remember getting backhanded if I was in the passenger seat and he couldn’t see past me when looking to the right when he was driving me to school. Not, “can you please lean back a little?”, just SMACK.  By that time I had had enough of this abuse crap, and went to my parents for help.  My brother proclaimed his innocence, and my parents accused me of being a liar.  For years my mother accused me of hating him and just trying to get him in trouble.  I admit, I did grow to hate him.  But then, when Josh died, I laid that hate down at my brother’s feet and told him I didn’t want it anymore.  He wasn’t worth the effort.  To my shock, he apologized.  He admitted he knew he had been awful, and was truly sorry.  On that day, I got my big brother back.  Since then, though there’s been times we’ve ticked each other off, we’ve built a relationship that I cherish.  He’s the only person in my life who’s hurt me who has actually admitted to it and apologized for it.

But, I have to admit, I’ve let the abuse I received as a child serve as the pedestal from which I’ve ALLOWED myself to be a victim.  Will stood me up in high school.  Poor me.  I got involved with a schizophrenic drug addict who (gasp!) killed himself.  I’ve let a good part of my youth slip away without ever taking the risks required to do any of the grand things I’d hoped I’d do.  I crawled into a bottle of Jim Beam, gained weight and went dateless for 7 years.  I had the power to change, avoid, or overcome any of these problems/issues.  And I’ve often told myself that I have, in fact, overcome them.  But that’s a lie.

Hubs and I were talking today about me pursuing one of the many crowdfunding opportunities available these days.  I posed the question, “what would I ask for funding for?”

Husband: Your repurposing stuff.  Your business.  Arr Bazaar.

I got irritated.

Me: What would I do with any money I raised?

Husband: Advertise your stuff.

Me: I’ve gone down that road before, remember?  When I tried to sell jewelry.

Husband: But this is different.

Me: Yes, but it’s still ME trying.

And then I turned on the tv and saw this kid, this “photography student”, advertising a smart phone by demonstrating the awesomeness of the pictures he took with it while skydiving.  And I hated him.

In not entirely unrelated news, I’m able to see my shrink on a weekly basis, at least for a while.  The psychological equivalent, hopefully, of having my name legally changed from “poor me” to “kick ass self”.


Potpourri, aka, rambling

My mood has been vacillating between blue and….not blue?  It’s like, my mind is in this muddy state, but every once in a while my brain gets a rinse and I feel, for a fleeting moment, like I could do something great.

I keep joking at work that I’m gonna move to Texas and sell pecans by the roadside.  I used to say oranges, but pecans work better.  My job as an insurance broker, as fascinating as it is <eyeroll>, seems to be winding down.  Not from anything I’ve done, I just see the industry taking this turn that leads to oblivion.

I started to write a lengthy diatribe about the things that piss me off about insurance…namely, the employees/individuals sense of entitlement and the insurance carrier’s greed.  But, honestly, I could go on about that for a week.  Bottom line, this mess is everyone’s fault, consumers, insurance companies, and doctors.

Charlie Sheen is in a stupid Fiat commercial, making a joke about his bad boy image.  Gag.

The zillow “zestimate” on my house is going down and down and down.  Hubs and I like to think we’ll be able to sell the house and move to Texas, but there’s a real chance it won’t sell for years.

I told my mom I was thinking of asking her to come out for a few days.  I find it overwhelming to take care of my daughter at times.  She can’t come any sooner than her planned visit in June/July.  She offered to fly my daughter and I out to Texas for a long weekend.  Yeah, because LAX and all the driving between SA and Kerrville are VERY relaxing.

I make jokes about “loving” my job, but I have noticed I’ve enjoyed it more lately, simple because it’s giving me a distraction.  My concentration is for crap, but, provided I’m not conducting a meeting with a client (like last week), my spacing out (like I did last week) is manageable.

My friend from junior high isn’t going to be able to come for a visit after all.  But she sends me really nice emails and wants to (gasp) talk.

I’m in the process of trying to see a psychiatrist.  I think I found a good one.  We’ll see.

My 8 year wedding anniversary is next week.  We’re gonna ask my MIL to watch the kidlet and go out for dinner.  Guess I should get hubs a gift, huh?

I’m really tired and think maybe it’s time to try and shut my brain down for the night.  Well, not all of it.  I should probably not turn off the auto-pilot.  Still need to breath and stuff.

Stupid jokes = end of writing for evening.  Need Frasier therapy.

Quick capsule review

So, after a couple of rounds of phone tag, I finally spoke to the psychiatrist my first choice (and unavailable) psychiatrist recommended me to.  The exchange went something like this…

Me: Hello

Dr: Yes, hello, this is Doctor X.  You’ve been trying to call me?

Me: Yes, hello.

Dr: What insurance do you have?

Me: Anthem Blue Cross

Dr: What do you need?

Me: (combination of odd phrasing and her accent confused me) I’m sorry?

Dr: Why do you want to see me?

Me: Well, I’m seeing a psychologist for talk therapy, but my general practitioner is the one who added Wellbutrin to my treatment when the Zoloft alone stopped working. I had a bad depressive episode in December/January.  I just don’t feel like the medication is doing….

Dr: (interrupting) Okay, I get the picture.  When do you want to come see me?

(The rest of the conversation involves making the appointment)

This does not bode well.  I’ll give her a chance, but I find that any doctor who interrupts and whose first question is to ask what insurance I have, well, that leads me to think her patients don’t come first.  My appointment isn’t for a week.  Perhaps I’ll see if I can find someone else. My shrink recommended someone, but that person isn’t in-network. Thanks to the crappy HSA my employer switched us to, an IN-network doctor’s visit costs me $100, so imagine what going out of network would cost.


UPDATE:  Kicked Doctor X to the curb.  Waiting for a call back from another doctor.  It’s called bedside manner, people.

Flip it (flip it good)

I’m still struggling, but I’m trying to turn a negative into a positive, basically by trying to talk myself out of this hole.  I’ve got a couple of shops on zazzle, so I decided to open one focused solely on the 20 foot hole.  In trying to think of what I wanted to say on the shirts I’ve created, I found myself serving as my own therapist.  So for at least a couple of hours yesterday, I started to feel a little better.

I’m going to try to retain this focus.  Either that or it’s lying in bed all day, staring at the wall.  Either path is good for me, right?

Words failing

What can I say?  I’m at a loss for words.  I feel myself sinking back into the 20 foot hole.  I don’t want to talk to anyone or go anywhere.  I have no energy or enthusiasm.  And it blows mightily.

The doctor who prescribed me new meds to combat this insipid illness in January has left her practice and has yet to set up a new one.  My shrink (a psychologist) thinks I should go to a psychiatrist and not my GP.  Considering the circumstances (GP is unreachable) and the fact that the meds the GP gave me don’t appear to be working, I’m following my shrink’s advice and trying to find a psychiatrist to help me find the right balance of meds.  I spoke to one today, but she’s not accepting new patients, so she referred me to her associate, who has yet to call me back.

My husband is getting worried about me again.  Can’t say I blame him.  I’m not 20 feet in, but am sinking. Probably at about 10 feet. My daughter is getting far too used to me “not feeling good”.

Did I mention this blows?

Anxiety Alert!

I have tons to write about, but, at the moment, I’m overwhelmed with anxiety. When I was a kid, around 14, I met a girl, Kristen, and we became best friends. Spent all our time together. We went to different high schools, but managed to stay close for many years. I remember going to see her after Josh died, but that may have been the last time. I was in such a bad place, it just wasn’t in me to try. Ironic considering Kristen was probably the last friend I had who would actually make the effort to see me. As I think I’ve said before, it’s not that I didn’t have other friends, but at some point I developed the uncanny ability to pick friends who seemed averse to initiating contact, though they were always happy to get together when *I’d* call.

Then I let Kristen slip out of my life. For years now I’ve searched for her. I’d check Facebook every now and again, but never found her..until about three months ago. I had forgotten she was still using her ex’s last name. I sent her a message, but wasn’t optimistic about getting a response. After a few days, I figured my pessimism was warranted, then, lo and behold, a response! It turns out she’s been searching for me, too. Of course, she’d have no way of knowing my married name, and my Facebook profile did not include my maiden name at the time (duh). She was so excited, especially when I told her I was going to Texas to see my brother and his new baby. She asked if we could meet up, and I agreed. Unfortunately, I let my anxiety get the better of me, and I found an excuse not to meet her. She understood, but I secretly hated myself for chickening out.

Today she posted a beautiful picture of Belgium on Facebook. I commented on it, then she responded with word that she had an airline voucher she needed to use by the end of May, and did I have any ideas where she should go? I told her she could come see us…we have a guest room with private bath, just for her. Again, I didn’t think anything would come of it. I expected her to ignore my half-hearted joke. She didn’t. Tonight she suggested a long weekend visit.

I am now freaked out. I told my husband about my anxiety. I’ve become such a porcupine over the years. What if it’s weird? He pointed out that this is someone, once a very close friend, who obviously wants to see me, to reconnect with me. For all the years I’ve complained to my husband about people not really making an effort with me, hubs (annoyingly) thinks I shouldn’t run away from someone when they DO make the effort. Imagine that?!

This is one of my big hurdles. For years now, I’ve become genuinely uncomfortable when someone makes the effort to be nice to me. I hate feeling that way.

Think my therapist would be willing to see me, oh, I don’t know, every single day until early May?