T coming to my house

Last week on the phone to T I told her how I wished she could come and see my new house. Imagine my total shock when she responded to say that we could arrange that!!!!

That was last Thursday and between then, and Sunday, somehow – don’t ask me how, I had totally forgotten. Perhaps I blocked it out or something? On Sunday my husband asked me to tell him about that conversation and asked me how I felt. I told him that it felt really weird and that I just couldn’t believe it.

I said it would be really weird to see T anywhere other than in her therapy room. This may sound strange, but I said even just seeing her drive or knock on my door would be weird. Would she have a handbag with her? Would she be dressed differently?

I said I would feel nervous about how to be around her, it would feel like the tables were turned and I had to somehow take the lead… I would offer her a cup of tea… would she sit on my sofas? She would get such a clearer image of who I was by seeing my home.

I said it would be like seeing your teacher at the pub (that happened to me when I was 18 and I found it strange!). It’s hard to place someone you’ve only ever seen in one scenario in another. Suddenly they become “real people”.

Equally part of me would love to show T my house – particularly because I don’t have a mum to do that with. I would love to know she had been there and it felt nice, but I admit, mainly scary.

Then in my phone session with her this afternoon, she mentioned it again and asked me how it felt and said a few things. I was convinced she was going to take her offer back and felt my stomach jump.

She asked me how it felt and I told her that it would be weird, I told her the teacher analogy but said it would also be nice. I admitted I would feel nervous but excited. She started to say that it can be dangerous to see your therapist outside of “the room” and that it can cause problems with the framework and then she said “it can cause all sorts of fantasies like that we would become friends”.

Oh my. That comment, meant so innocently and said in such a Nonchalant way, hurt so much. It hurt instantly like before I even consciously tried to process what she had said. Ouch.

We are not friends.

From a practice point of view I guess I understand that but it really did feel like a punch to the stomach. It felt like she was rejecting me I suppose.

She told me it would not be a therapy session but that she hoped it would be therapeutic. She said she wouldn’t offer this with everyone, that so many factors would determine if it was suitable and she admitted that she would never have suggested this to me 2 or 3 years ago.

She really encouraged me to be honest with her and tell her the total truth about any feelings I had over the coming weeks. She said a few times that I did not have to go along with it and that it would not ruin or change anything at all. She said that as long as I promised to be completely honest with her about anything that came up for me, we would be okay. She said it may trigger some painful transference or other types of painful feelings. I ummed and ahhed along and then our session was over.

So now I’m sat in my car trying to process this. I have a really strange and unsettling feeling inside. It doesn’t feel all roses and butterflies which surprises me because doe 5 years, I would have prayed for a chance like this. Now I’m questioning myself, is it that I want to become friends? Is it part of me secretly hoping it’s the start of something else like her next meeting my husband or me being invited to her house (knowing that won’t happen). Or am I lost being silly and overthinking it?

Will it make me feel the difference between how much she knows about me and how much I know about her even more? Will that feel unfair or unbalanced?

What does it really matter that she sees my house? Why am I scared about being with her in my house instead of her therapy room? What difference does it really make?

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Trying to stay steady

I’ve just finished my phone session with T in the park again. I’m sat on a bench right now overlooking the big pond and watching squirrels climb up the trees and jump between them. There are birds flying around and ducks being fed by children. It’s very autumnal here today, red and orange leaves are scattered all over the floor and it’s chilly enough that I’m wearing a proper coat. My favourite season for sure. I love it.

However inside my mood is sad. I’ve felt very sad this week about my lack of contact with my sister. In the last few days she’s blocked me completely on social media and most recently, Sunday I think, she removed my stepson’s access to her family music account.

On Monday I was so angry about that. I was furious. It took everything I had not to message her and tell her she’s a stupid little girl (despite being 24), but I was told by my husband and later by T, not to rise to her as she was acting out.

By Tuesday night however when I spoke to T, I cried a fair bit. It all feels so bloody sad that we’ve just stopped speaking – why?? I cried to T and she kept telling me to hold steady because it’s important that I am not always the one to fix things between us when she’s caused an argument. She explained to me how my sister “splits” and sometimes I’m seen to be “all good” and other times, “all bad”. T said she has clearly made up a narrative that I’m horrible and that I should leave her to it because there’s no point in wasting my energy trying to convince her that I’m not “all bad”. Just human.

But then last night I was laying in bed and I decided to re-read all our old messages. I read about a year’s worth and some of the messages made me smile and laugh – there were countless “ugly” selfies and voice clips of us doing stupid voices or singing parts of songs. There were messages between us where I gave her advice and there were more general every-day messages. Soon I found myself sobbing again. I really realised how much I miss her. I didn’t really realise but having her around feels like having a really good friend. It’s like I’ve lost a good friend.

I do realise that that sounds like a rather Rose-tinted view and that obviously we wound each other up and had rows and stuff – it wasn’t ever perfect BUT still, I miss her.

I told T this in our call this afternoon and I also told her that the last two sets of messages were actually okay. They weren’t arguments. We had “the”argument and then there was a message she sent about something random and then a message she sent wishing me happy birthday.

Then nothing…..

I said to T that I had genuinely forgotten these extra messages and that I had thought all this time that we were still not speaking because of the argument. I said I was worried she thought she had made the effort and had text me several times, and I had not bothered. I kinda understood her point of view.

T said that just because she had initiated two text conversations didn’t mean that she should give up and never speak to me anymore and it didn’t mean she should then block me on socials and remove my stepson’s access to the music thing…. I agreed. I told her that my husband said the same thing and also said that he hasn’t messaged his sister for weeks and that she’s often the one to initiate the messages between them but that didn’t mean she would suddenly stop speaking to him or block him on social media. He said I was trying to make excuses for her.

T ended up saying that it was up to me and that if I really wanted to contact her, that I should do but that she was worried my sister was clearly acting out very passively and that she was concerned I would receive an ear-bashing. I agreed and said I could almost guarantee I would. My sister loves an argument and has almost certainly painted herself as a victim in this. I wasn’t sure there was a way to try and talk without having some huge argument and I really don’t want that.

T suggested contacting her now may send the wrong message because she has just done all the acting out this week. It may look like her acting out and bad behaviour has worked – by getting my attention. I agreed and said I didn’t want to do that, but I’m worried more and more time is passing and more and more damage is being done to our relationship.

T told me to hold tight. She said I had a lot going on with the house move right now and that she thinks I should wait a while and wait until I’ve moved and got settled before making any contact. She suggested I just sent something like “we haven’t spoken for ages, it’s a shame and I miss you” or said even maybe just send a funny gif or something.

She’s probably right. There’s a huge part of me who is feeling the discomfort of the sadness and true missing and the fear of the damage this is doing that makes me want to fix it right now – literally right now… but I know she’s probably right and I know she doesn’t want me to end up hurt which I think I very easily could.

So I suppose I have to hang tight.

My sister has never been the one to try and fix an argument with me after a period of silence like this. It’s always, always me and I don’t want that pattern to continue but I do really miss her. Me and T have spoken a lot about my sister and T thinks she had borderline PD. I think so too, and that makes it harder for me in many ways because I understand that the things she does like the splitting and the irritability and inability to ever be wrong or take ownership all stems from a really hurt part of her created by my bloody mother. It all comes from the insecure attachment and insecurity and that just makes me want to look after her more – not less! It makes me want to show her she is loved, really loved – by me!! But that’s very hard to do when she acts out like this and when she’s living with my mother and has convinced herself my mother is “all good” and has changed etc….

It infuriates me that my mother’s treatment of us both has ruined our ability to have a healthy relationship too. It’s yet another causality to come from her. The fact I’ve always been like a surrogate mother to my sister makes this even harder because I automatically want to be “the adult” who says “come on now, let’s play nicely” but she’s an adult too and for her sake as much as my own, I can’t do that. Can I?

I only stopped contacting her because I was angry with her aggression over me not attending that flipping family event and her shitty comment about my therapy – oh and her passive aggressive Twitter and Instagram comments. All that got to me and I realised I didn’t like it and didn’t want to be making contact with someone and ignoring all of that. Perhaps I should have handled that better and told her that outright. Maybe in effect I’ve given her the silent treatment without meaning to? That’s a passive aggressive action too, so doesn’t make me any better.

It’s a thin line between setting boundaries and reacting passively isn’t it??

Today: 27 September

Last night I had a dream that I was at my nan’s house early in the morning (I think I had stayed there and had not long been awake) when the doorbell went. In my gut I knew I wasn’t going to like who was at the door and I was right, it was my mother. As soon as I heard her voice I felt dread. She walked in and looked at me and I didn’t attempt to look happy to see her. I was not at all happy that she was there and felt as though she had planned this on purpose because she knew it was the only way for her to see me. I also knew that my time with my nan was now ruined. I don’t remember how old I was, but I think I was young because I felt like I had no control over this situation.

It happens to be my mother’s birthday today so I guess it’s no massive surprise that I dreamt of her last night but also I think there’s more to it because the house I am moving to soon is very near to my grandparents’ house and I was telling T the other day that I was a bit anxious that this would mean I would have to see my mother and her husband driving past my new house regularly on their way to my grandparents’, or that I would be reversing out of my drive and be let out by someone, only to find out its them. I told her it probably sounded silly but that I worry about that kind of thing because I don’t even want to SEE them when I don’t intend to (or him ever). T also pointed out that there would be a chance that I would be at my grandparents’ house and they turn up whilst I am there. She told me that if that happened I would be okay and I could simply say “hello” and then leave. Likewise she said if I was in the car I could simply put my hand up to acknowledge then or even wave (not enthusiastically obvs) and then drive off. I suppose it’s no real wonder I had that dream, that is a real-life anxiety at the moment. 

Today 3 years ago I passed my driving test (later in life than most people) and annoyingly that brings mixed emotions too. I did not book my driving test on my mother’s birthday on purpose, it was the date my instructor had offered and so I accepted. At the time I rarely saw my mother and I hadn’t told her that my test was booked for fear of failing and just to avoid the pressure I suppose. My mother had spent years and years telling me that I would never drive and that I would not be “a natural driver” like her and my sister. Her comments annoyingly put me off even trying for many years until I started to separate from her and book my secret lessons and test in. 3 years ago today, on her birthday, I took my first driving test and I passed. I passed with only 3 minors. I was so shocked that I had done it because I genuinely did not think I would have a chance. 

After I told my husband who was over the moon for me and who had been a huge source of encouragement, I told my mother. Initially she shrieked and seemed really happy for me but when I visited her later that evening for her birthday she said the following: “They probably passed you because you work in the City and wouldn’t actually drive that often”. 

That comment stung SO bad. It played on my mind for ages and ages. In fact, even today, 3 years later that comment hurts. That is my mother all over, she can put a dampener on the happiest of events or days. She always knew how to make me doubt myself or feel insecure. It was always the same. 

Today, 3 years since that day I am sitting at work and thinking how proud I still am of that day and to be honest how I still can’t believe I did it. I also thought that since that day, I have got married and in the next week or two, I will be completing on my house purchase with my husband. In some ways I can see that I have done well and achieved quite a lot since I distanced myself from my mother, though I know that sounds big-headed and I hate big-headedness.. but it does also make me a little bit sad that I’ve had to celebrate these huge events without a supportive and proud mother standing at the side-lines. I imagine people who have supportive mothers don’t even really recognise or register how nice that is (and rightly so, it should be something you take for granted), but for me today that feels a bit rubbish. 

My mother is currently on a two week holiday abroad and as harsh as it may sound, I am very glad for that. I am glad I don’t have to see her and I am glad that I haven’t had to decline another invitation from her which we both know I will not attend but that leaves me feel guilty regardless of knowing my reasons are valid. I keep hoping that my house does finally complete before she is home but I don’t really know why, because even if she were home from her holiday it isn’t like she would be offering to help me or popping over with sandwiches!! She never has. It just feels safer somehow if she is further away… somehow it feels like something could be ruined and that I would feel more anxious if she were around. Sounds mean doesn’t it? 

Just to put the icing on the cake, it happens to be my mother-in-law’s birthday on Sunday and we are going out for lunch to celebrate. We have a card, present and will sort a cake out etc. My mother-in-law is a kind lady and she deserves to have some fuss made out of her just like she does on Mothering Sunday, but it is a reminder of how different things could have been for me and my mother. 

One nice feeling at the moment though (to counteract the above!!) is that despite the sadness that occasionally creeps into my dream world or my conscious thoughts, the heart-breaking, life-altering pain has gone. Acceptance is well and truly here. The situation is sad but it is what it is and it is not and has never been, my fault. I no longer spend days occupied by thoughts of her or reading everything there is to read on Google about narcissists or narcissistic mothers. I don’t watch countless videos on YouTube about dysfunctional families or toxic parents etc. I know I am literally thinking and writing about her now, but on the whole she doesn’t take up much space anymore and that is a real relief. 

I feel pretty at peace with the fact we have very low contact and I do not feel burning anger over the situation. I don’t daydream about it being “fixed” like I used to. I don’t hope to hear from her either. I don’t feel that my low contact with her is some kind of punishment or revenge like it once was, I just feel safer with the distance between us. 

Obviously that’s not to say that I’ll never have moments of weakness again or never cry at how sad it is or at the “could have been’s”, but they are less and less frequent these days and even when they come, I do not act on them OR even want to act on them which shows a lot of growth and strength I think. 

Annoyingly I now feel like I am starting a similar process with my sister and honestly the bad thing about having “been there before” is knowing how painful it is and what a long, long process it is too. I suppose there having done it before at least allows me to have hope that it does get better – because it has done once before and at times, I never believed it could. 

I have been lucky enough to have not lost many close relatives in my life so far but I wonder if the feeling is similar. After the stages of grief and anger and denial and bargaining have been tired out, you reach a level of acceptance and understanding. It doesn’t mean that you are glad that person has gone (emotionally or figuratively in my case), but you are able to move on with your life in a way that isn’t so debilitating as it once was. Just a thought. 

I’ve been starting to think about how getting to this place re my mother is a sign that therapy really has worked – and in so many ways. The processing of the blocked grief, fear and anger but also of the kind of re-parenting I’ve had from T. I do notice how steady I feel these days and how much more secure I feel in relation to my relationships. T has just returned this week from a two-week break and in all honesty as much as I was looking forward to seeing her, I felt fine. I didn’t feel like I was desperate to see her or feel like I was counting down the days. I could have easily done another week. It felt this time more of a wish to see her because I care for her and less of an urgent need to see her to help me if that makes sense. That is also a nice feeling and one that makes me feel a little stronger about my sense of self. It has taken 5 entire years though and that feels like a lifetime! 5 YEARS of therapy….wow.

Pondering the above has made me feel that I don’t think I am going to need to continue having two sessions for much longer. I know that T has said before that even if I don’tneed two sessions a week, that I should let myself have them just to enjoy the holding and the conversations and all the lovely good stuff that therapy brings. I am also conscious that I am only just back after a break and as much as I currently feel this is a genuine feeling, perhaps this is my subconscious kicking out or something. Who knows, stranger things have happened and this does tend to be a similar theme when breaks are around so I am not intending to do anything about this just now… I am going to just sit and wait for a while. Hold still as T would say and “sit with it” for a while to see what comes up. I’m also aware that T would say I am pre-occupied with my house at the moment and so probably not properly “in it”. We shall see…. Obviously seeing T twice a week is not a chore or anything, it is nice but also there’s a part of me that would like to reach a stage where I am less reliant on her and not spending £320 a month on therapy LOL. T would literally hate it if she read that last sentence.. it would doubtless start a whole conversation about my health and wellbeing being more important than money etc which of course, it is. But let’s be honest, nobody wants to have to have therapy forever – especially twice a week. Yesterday me and T spent about 45 minutes discussing keeping chickens, guinea pigs, domestic hedgehogs and how she has a dog-pram (this still makes me crack-up!). The point being, whilst potentially therapeutic… not really actually therapy.. but I had nothing pressing to talk about. As ever, I totally believe that I still need to be seeing her once a week so I don’t think I am ready to be without her in the world. My dependency just feels.. lighter than it once did. Sometimes I look back on old blogs about my teddy bear (Frank) and about being jealous about her daughters or her talking about her mother or something else and I can’t even believe that was me!! It’s so weird.

Anyway, I am going to the gym to try and burn a few calories and stop writing every thought that comes into my head!

Have nice weekends everyone. X

Scapegoat: Anger & Sadness

I need some blog-writing therapy today.  I am so tired that I can’t actually be arsed to write, but I really need to, so I am hoping this helps.

Last night I was playing on my phone as me and my husband drove back from a wedding quite far away. I was flicking through social media and not paying much attention until I clicked onto my sister’s Instragram page to see if she had put anything up and saw that apparently we were no longer “following” each other… I knew immediately that she had removed me/blocked me/whatever it is called but just to be sure I asked someone else if they could still see her stuff and, obviously, they could.

I was shocked and hurt.  Why had she done this and why now?

I haven’t heard from my sister in months, I blogged about what happened previously but in short she is angry with me for not attending a family bbq in the summer that my mother and stepfather arranged for my grandparents and extended family.  I also blogged back then about my reasons for not going (mainly my stepfather but also not wanting to be around the toxicity of them all being drunk and having to attend without my husband because my mother and stepfather hate him and he hates them).

I would like to say at this point that it was not an easy decision not to go, but in all honesty, it was.  I went camping with my husband and stepchildren instead and I was pleased with the decision I made. I was relieved and glad and, I’ll be honest, I was proud of myself for doing what I needed to do for me for once and for not being guilt-tripped into attending something for the sake of keeping the peace or avoiding conflict.  That may sound selfish but I am very low contact with my mother and completely no contact with her husband for a reason (many actually) and do not feel safe going to an event like that, particularly without my support system (husband).

My sister however… well, she thinks I am the worst person in the entire world for not attending and she can only see this through her own eyes.  I am selfish because my grandparents would have loved us ALL to be there and my personal favourite “they are going to die soon” and we won’t have the chance to do that for them again.  In other words, I have ruined their “dream” and now they will die unhappy because of me.  Powerful aren’t I?? *rolls eyes*. By the way, this whole me and death thing is a theme in my family.  My mother told me when I was younger that if I told my nan about the sexual abuse I suffered at the hands of my mother’s then boyfriend, she would have a heart attack and die.  My therapist often tells me “you are not that powerful Twink” and I have to repeat that to myself when the guilt over this kicks in now and again.

When my sister aired her disappointment at me, I told her that I did what was right for me and that whilst she had every right to be annoyed or upset about that, it was HER issue and not mine and I did say (in anger) that she had no right to contact me and say everything she was saying.

Months have passed since that happened and suddenly yesterday she has unfollowed/blocked me on social media.  WHY?

Anyway, I have felt very sad today. Very down and its made me reflect on and (over)think about so many things re her, mainly her, but also my mother, my entire family really and I guess in many ways I’ve felt a bit sorry for myself but the general feeling today has been how UNFAIR it all is.  I said to my husband earlier that I know I sound immature and childish saying that, “unfair” feels like a young word to me, but that I just can’t help it.. that is the feeling and I can’t change how I feel just because it isn’t mature enough.  I’ve learnt enough in therapy to know that denying your feelings really doesn’t get you anywhere.

The main thing eating away at me today is that I just want to have a nice, normal relationship with my sister. I would love to have the closeness that many sisters have and that I just do not understand why that is not possible.

With the risk of sounding like a narcissist myself, I have looked after my sister for her entire life.  I have cared for her since I was a child myself, literally. I have supported her through her spells of depression. I’ve rescued her from my mother’s rages – helped her when she has been suicidal and been there as an older sister for her to talk to, cook for and all the other stuff.  Then after literally years of that care, I don’t attend a flipping bbq and I’m cast as the worst person in the world and ignored for months and now, apparently I am so awful that she doesn’t even want me to see her Instagram photos!!! WHY?

There have been many times over these past months that I’ve wanted to contact her and try to sort this mess out, to fix it but T has advised me many times that my sister is used to treating me badly, being abusive or nasty and then not speaking to me for a while before I contact her and let it all go and repeat… she told me that I have always taken the role of mother and she’s been able to act badly with no repercussions and that now I needed to let her know very clearly, I will not tolerate her bad behaviour anymore and that I will not just let it all go without any kind of discussion or apology.  She advised me to let her come to me.  I told her then, that she wouldn’t. That she is the most stubborn person I know but she told me to wait it out.

I can’t decide if I am more hurt or angry today. I feel both things so strongly.  I could cry right now so there’s definitely sadness but I am also enraged at the unfairness of it.  It triggers an old wound in me of not being loved and of not being good enough and it triggers a current wound in me of being the flipping scapegoat despite not having done anything wrong.

She cannot see things from my point of view because she is different to me.  She had a difficult childhood too, in different ways to me. We had different issues to deal with.  She is too young to remember some of the worst things, she didn’t get sexually abused and not to sound braggy, but she had me protecting her and caring for her which I did not have.  BUT she was clearly affected by my mother’s lack of interest and love and it led to my sister’s depression.  Me being my mother’s project and golden child for a few years also stuck the knife in and made her feel rejected and left out and so, we both have our own insecurities and difficulties.  Sadly my sister is very strongly against therapy and so she has managed to convince herself that my mother is wonderful (and changed!) and that my mother’s husband is an amazing man and that altogether, the family is very lovely and very happy and that it is only me ruining things for them all.

My poor mother is so upset and hurt by me.. SHE is so upset and hurt by me and oh, did I mention that I’ve so upset and hurt my grandparents by not going to the bbq.  Ugh.

I am the scapegoat. I am the one with the problem. I am the one who holds a grudge and doesn’t “move on”.  I am the one who has been brainwashed by a therapist, a therapist who I “still” see when I should not.  I have forgotten about my own family and now only care about my husband and his.  I have been selfish and cruel and my sister just cannot stand a person like me, one with no morals.  My mother said recently that me and my sister have “very different priorities”.  What she meant by that was that my sister priorities her and my stepfather and my grandparents etc – …. and that I do not.

That’s true.. and there are many, many reasons for that.  Did my mother prioritise me when I was a child? No, she did not.  But that sentence would be seen as further evidence of me not “getting over things”, holding a grudge, not moving on blah blah and they would say things like “what is that therapist telling her because she clearly isn’t helping her to get over her anger at these perceived wrongs.  She’s brainwashed”.

I’m angry about how unfair this all is. I grew up feeling alone, unsafe and unloved. I was literally not safe.  My mother was selfish and only interested in men, she did not enjoy me, I was literally just a burden.  My entire childhood was a lonely, scary, awful time and now that I am finally an adult myself, trying to recover from all of those years… I am being scapegoated and hated because of my distance from my mother.  HOW IS THAT FAIR?

I know that everyone thinks they are innocent in arguments with other people but this feels so totally unjust that I want to scream.  I not only made it through my awful childhood but I acted as a bloody substitute mother for my sister for years and years and now she’s living with my mother and step-father playing happy families whilst they all talk about how awful a person I am.

My mother clearly is never going to be able to admit she was a shit mother.  She does not think she did a single thing wrong. Nothing that I felt growing up is valid, nothing.  I am deluded and made it all up. I need my “head testing” (literally her words).  That’s fine. I genuinely think I have made peace with that.  I no longer need her to be able to validate my pain because I have had it validated from T over the last 5 years of therapy and, more importantly I suppose, I validate my own pain now.  I remember how I felt and that is all that matters.  Whether she can ever acknowledge her mistakes and apologise no longer matters.  I have worked VERY hard to get to this point but my sister…. clearly I am not “there” yet because this has seriously stirred me up today.  She has a VERY short memory.. or she has an extremely good defence mechanism.

My husband said earlier that my sister is only “nice” to me if I do exactly what she wants me to do.  The second I say “no” to her, this happens. She says a load of nasty and unfair things to me and then disappears off……….. and eventually I chase after her because I miss her, because I want us to be sisters and possibly because I am still trying to “look after her” like she is my child because for so many years, she may as well have been.

I will never be able to do what my sister wants me to do which is to play happy families again.  My sister would like me to make up with my mother and stepfather, start going to my mother’s house again regularly, attend every family party and event and just do the things that she thinks I should be doing.  Instead I am difficult and selfish.

I will never be able to win. I will never be able to do what she wants me to do.  I don’t keep my distance to hurt or punish my mother – I just keep myself safe.  I do what is best for me and if that is selfish, well then I am selfish, but all in honesty I think I am just healthy.  For years I was a people-pleaser and a codependent, but now I am not and I am glad of that. My mother (and my sister) would like me to sweep everything under the rug and smile and get along with everyone but why should I? I can’t understand how my sister can remember our childhood and put it all aside like it doesn’t matter anymore. Maybe that is what I would have done had I not had therapy after all, until I had therapy I didn’t realise even half of the ways my mother had hurt me.  This is why my family think therapy is so awful.  Why uncover and validate all of your pain when you can just squash it down and drink yourself stupid every weekend instead?

Why fix dysfunctional patterns when you could just continue to repeat and pass on the hurt to another generation?  WHY take a look at yourself when there is always someone else to blame? Me being the problem in the family enables them to look squeaky clean because they are all fine – it is only me with the issue.  It definitely serves my mother to have my sister on her “side”.

The conflict remains. I miss my sister and I wish we could have a close bond but I cannot do what she wants me to do and I am so hurt and angry with her for treating me like a monster from simply protecting myself.  I wish she could understand that my mother refusing to validate, accept or apologise for anything in my childhood has caused me unbearable pain and appreciate my need to keep my distance.  I wish she could just respect my decision and love me anyway – without strings.  But she cannot.

Being the family scapegoat is horrible. It is lonely and feels grossly unfair. There is nothing I can do about it.  Challenging the family system is clearly an act punishable by rejection and isolation and that is very painful.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dreams

Friday night I dreamt of T. It was a strange dream and it wasn’t until I was out for a run Saturday morning that the dream suddenly came back to me. I actually stopped running suddenly as it flashed in my memory and I opened my phone to write a quick (illegible) note before it went away to the place that forgotten dreams go.

In the dream I was having a session with T but my husband was also in the room, though he was completely relaxed and just reading a newspaper with his legs stretched out. T told me that she used to do another job and said that she was so rich that she had more money than she could have ever spent. I was like 😲 wow!  I then picked up a glass of orange juice which was in front of me and drank it and just as I swallowed the very last mouthful, I realised that it was T’s juice and I was horrified and said to her “OMG I am sooooo sorry, I thought that was mine!” she didn’t seem too bothered and just said “So I see”.  I was mortified that I had done that, it was like I was just on autopilot and wasn’t thinking about what I was doing.

Looking around T had drawing stuff and sewing stuff everywhere. The room was messy and I remember thinking she was arty and had numerous hobbies. She went upstairs for something but didn’t come back for a very long time. Meanwhile I remember thinking how glad I was that T was able to see how I was around my husband in that I didn’t change and that I was completely myself.

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Then, last night I had another dream. This time about my mother. This one felt SO real. In it I had arranged to go shopping with my mother and when I met her she was with my Nan and my sister. She hasn’t said they were coming and I was a little bit annoyed because I felt a bit overpowered by them all (due to the fact they are all close and I’m almost estranged).

I remember walking around a shop feeling a bit nervous and then my mother said “right, you need to snap out of this now! Get your husband and come to my house Monday after work” – what she meant was that I had to start talking to her husband again and my husband also had to come along and make up with them both”.

I felt angry and said that I didn’t want to and that I did not miss going to her house or seeing her husband and said I was happy with the way things are. She was furious and shouted “Ohhh well as long as YOU are happy, that’s all that matters isn’t it?!” – being sarcastic. My nan and sister were standing behind her looking disapprovingly at me.  I snapped “see, this is what I mean. We can’t spend time together without something like this happening. I’m going, bye“. And off I went.

I then had an internal panic about how I would find my way home from where I was to my in-laws where I’m currently living and then I realised I had my car in a car park and was nervous about the drive. I remember thinking I should call my husband but thinking he was at work so I shouldn’t bother him and that I was an adult and should be able to work it out on my own.

In the dream I was shaking with anger and fear but I felt pleased I had been able to say what I needed and walk away.

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I felt fine, happy even, both yesterday and today and so the dreams didn’t seem to impact my mood like they sometimes do. I was grateful for that as I hate the feeling they can leave me with some days.

I assume I am dreaming about T because she is on a two week break and I actually quite like the dream because my husband was there and totally relaxed which I like to think is symbolic of how comfortable he is with me having therapy and also perhaps something to do with the fact that my husband would love to meet T and to be a fly on the wall and equally, I would like T to meet him.

I am not sure what the relevance was of me drinking her orange juice, but the feeling in the dream was that I had been SO relaxed and comfortable that I had done it without thinking and maybe that’s a nice sign of how relaxed I am now feeling with her compared to over the years.  Her telling me how rich she used to be was strange and I was so shocked but I wonder if this could be symbolic of how little I really know about her life.  For example not knowing what she is doing in her break and not really knowing anything about her past.

The dream about my mother on the other hand, well, that one isn’t so surprising or strange although the timing feels a bit odd as I haven’t thought about her consciously so it seemed a surprise in that sense.

The content of the dream however is so close to reality that it doesn’t surprise me whatsoever.  That dream could very easily play out and in actual fact, in recent months I’ve been so nervous about her blatantly asking (telling) me to pack it in and do what she wants – go to her house, see her husband, get my husband to suck up to them etc.  However as I have written recently, I have suddenly made peace with that fear in me and I now really know that I don’t want to do those things and so the panic I used to feel is no longer in me.

Perhaps the dream was my subconscious’ way of playing out the scene.  Trying it out for size.. preparing me for the real deal perhaps? Also the last time I saw her we went into a clothes shop and I felt the same nerves about her.  My psyche is clearly working some things through.

T would say that it demonstrated that I could stand up to her and walk away and survive it and that I would be okay. The world wouldn’t end etc.  But honestly, I don’t feel that worry and panic or fear at the moment anyway.  Still, it was quite helpful to have that dream because perhaps in the future a similar scenario will play out for me and I will have that memory to use for reassurance.

In real life, my mother text me earlier this week asking me how the house was progressing and said again how much she just cannot wait for me to move back closer to her and how she can’t wait to see me so much more.  This really is weird, I’ve said this before but I just do not understand her logic here.  I have lived ten minutes away from her for years now and now that I am temporarily further away its like she’s convinced herself that this is the only reason we don’t see each other more often. Like whhhatttt??? It’s so weird!!!

Last time she did this T said “that fucks with your head” which is true but when I asked T WHY she would think that or say that, T said she wouldn’t be surprised if she was just saying something for the sake of saying something or even saying what she thinks she should say.  It baffles me nevertheless, it isn’t like she would even come to my new house because she never does and never has and she wouldn’t now because of my husband.  Surely she isn’t going to expect an invitation for her and her husband to come and see our new place by way of offering an olive branch? God I hope not because that simply is not going to happen.  Perhaps she really does think that just because we will be living a new, exciting phase in our lives (having purchased our first home) that all the past will magically be wiped away and we will all play happy families again.  Oh dear.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Life

I called in sick from work today due to a tummy bug and so right now I am sat on the sofa at my in-law’s house and I am home alone for the first time in 7 weeks!!! 7 weeks of being with at least one other person, usually at least 3 other people and on the hardest days, 11 other people. It is like heaven.  The silence is amazing!

I slept on and off until about 9am and then lazed around in bed watching my favourite programme. I’ve been up, put a wash on and hung it out to dry and now I am sitting here writing this.  I couldn’t be happier (aside from the tummy bug but that seems to be getting better).

Our house purchase finally seems to be picking up some pace.  I spoke with the agent a few days ago and he said that we should be able to exchange contracts at the end of September with completion as soon as possible after that. I have everything crossed that this finally happens, it has been one hell of a wait that’s for sure.  I have been told my whole life that I have no patience.  My grandmother used to tell me, as did my mother and now my husband says it too but I like to think considering how stressful it has been having to move out of our home and into the in-laws whilst still having a full time job, the kids staying every weekend and all the fertility stuff going on, that I’ve shown quite a lot of patience actually LOL.

But.. having said that, I can feel that my tolerance is beginning to run out.  I am finding things increasingly difficult now.  Sunday night I cried in bed because I felt so desperate to be in my own house without other people around constantly.  I am pretty introverted and so this constant people thing is so hard for me.  My in-laws are truly lovely people, but there’s only so much time you can spend around other people isn’t there? I miss just being with my husband in our own house just relaxing even down to the really silly things like laying on the sofa or cooking naughty food and snacking on chocolate on a Sunday evening, not to mention (and sorry if you are offended) but to be able to actually have sex! Honestly, we are a married couple living like brother and sister with our parents, its weird and crap and it took its toll by Sunday night and I cried it all out.  We joke that everything here is “sex-proofed” as everything is so noisy and squeaky so there’s no chance of a sneaky bit of fun.  In all seriousness though, it isn’t about the sex really, but it is about that feeling of closeness with my husband. I miss him and I miss us being a couple even down to not sleeping in a proper double bed where we can cuddle before we go to sleep.  Sleeping on two single beds pushed together with a gap between them really isn’t the same.  Ditto living out of bags and only having a few of your belongings.

On Monday my husband was really down and sad and said he was feeling how I was and that me crying had probably not helped (he didn’t mean that horribly, just it made him feel shit that I was so down).  So anyway, now that the end of September is being spoken about as potential exchange, it gives me a glimmer of hope and something to count down towards rather than just feeling like there is infinite amounts of time passing with nothing getting easier.

Anyway, aside from that stuff I am finding something else a bit difficult at the moment and that is my friend and team leader at work.  I sit next to her in the office and we are friends as well as colleagues but recently I am finding her harder and harder to sit with all day.  I’m not sure whether she has changed, or whether I have only just started to notice, but she is SO miserable and negative and she literally moans about absolutely everything, constantly all day long.  I find myself going to work feeling happy enough and within half an hour of being at my desk, I am irritated and stressed out. I’ve been trying all sorts of different tactics to stop myself being affected by her, such as not really entertaining the things she says when she’s moaning about someone – for example I continue typing and looking at my screen and maybe just make a “mm” noise rather than engaging with her properly.  That seemed to just annoy her and she said “are you listening?”.

The real problem is that she is the team leader of 7 of us and she is absolutely awful at that role. She does not lead or manage any of the team and because of it, the team is crap.  There are people that barely do any work, people that are so shit at their job but never called up that they are avoided when work is being given out, some girls are late every single day, some take long lunches every day and one girl sits on her phone literally all day long.  What does she do about this? Literally I am not exaggerating, all she does is moan to me and slag them off to me.  She NEVER disciplines them, or tells them off. She never calls them up on anything.  For example on a typical day I will have her in my ear saying “X is late again, what a surprise”, then “She’s on her bloody phone again!!”, “what time did X go to lunch? Why isn’t she back yet?” and “X has fucked this up, again, she’s useless!” and on and on it goes.  The other day I found myself snapping at her for something she was moaning about and she said “Well I don’t mean you, obviously” and so I said “Well, I am the only one who can hear you!!”.  Its infuriating.  It probably sounds pathetic but honestly, since this has become more and more of an issue, I find her more and more painful to sit next to and obviously she is the boss and so I have nobody to complain to about her.

She does have a boss too and my husband has suggested I go straight to that person but I don’t feel that is an option because they are close and so the other boss would just tell her what I had said about her but also, we have a friendship (one that now feels difficult) and I don’t think that would be the right thing to do – to go over her head and complain about her. Ugh.

Luckily she works from home on a Friday and I know it sounds awful but I love it. I get to come in and get my head down and work hard without all the bitching and moaning and negativity. That’s awful isn’t it? On top of that, I have the additional anger because she isn’t managing the team and I feel I am doing so much more work that everyone else (because they are all too busy being late, at lunch, on their phones or useless lol) and I am too conscientious (to a fault) to let the work mount up until someone complains.  Even SHE told me the other day “stop doing it all then, let someone complain when a deadline is missed!” but its like…. OR you could do your job and MANAGE the team????? She has been in this role for over 20 years now so it isn’t anything to do with not knowing what to do.  I don’t understand her reasons, whether its laziness or what, but it sucks and because of her I am finding work really difficult.

I said to my husband that if we weren’t so desperate for a baby I would 100% be leaving – without a doubt, but unfortunately I need maternity pay for if and when the time comes and I can’t afford to start a new job and have to wait the two years to get that again.

Since writing this she has phoned me (whilst I am off sick) to talk about a few jobs I was dealing with yesterday.  Even that annoys me because she doesn’t ever phone anyone else in the team when they are off sick, they are left alone but because we are “friends”, she obviously feels she can call me and on the phone she was miserable and winging about stuff and arguing with me about whether or not some figures were right that I’ve done.  I felt like yelling at her to leave me alone, but obviously I can’t do that so I didn’t.  Still, just since that call I can feel my body has gone angry and tense.  She really causes a reaction in me, she irritates me so easily.

Okay, rant over.

So that is about it really…. T is on holiday this week and next so no therapy for me for a while.  I feel okay about that though, at the moment anyway.

 

My analogy for when I am regressed

I came up with a very random analogy the other night to explain to my husband how I feel in the times that I suddenly “miss” my mother and I thought I would write it here so that in the harder times to come, I can read this and remind myself of what is happening.

I used a smoking analogy because my husband has recently quit smoking and so I hoped he would be able to relate a little more, this is what I said:

I explained that it is like when you’ve quit something (smoking, drinking, drugs – whatever) and you know that you are doing the right thing. You have all the facts, you know smoking is killing you, you know its costing a lot of money, you know it makes your clothes smell and ruins your taste buds etc and you are really, genuinely very glad that you have quit.  You are proud of yourself for quitting.  All is good.

Until all of a sudden, you are hit with this extreme craving for a cigarette.  Suddenly the need for a cigarette is urgent and although you know all of the logical stuff about health and finances and how disappointed you would be with yourself for caving, you can decide in a second to either disregard all of that stuff and just satisfy the craving with a cigarette… OR fight the craving.  Distract yourself by drinking some water or by brushing your teeth – whatever it is that you need to do.  You have a moment when it is so easy to go either way.

But gradually, over time, the cravings come less and less often (or maybe eventually stop altogether).  The fight was worth it! You are no longer addicted.  YAY!!!

I explained that it feels much the same way to me in relation with my mum at times.  I can be happy with the very limited contact we have. I can know that I am better off this way, know that it is better for me and for my peace of mind and yet randomly, every now and again I find myself in this regressed child-like place where suddenly all the logic goes out of the window and all that seems to matter is that I get my needs met (the needs often being this fantasy of having the perfect, loving mother stroking my hair and bringing me tea and stuff).

I can feel this really strong pull to go to her – to run to her and I have to decide which way I will go.  I can either, give in to this really strong craving to see her OR I can try to sit through the pain and wait for it to pass (which it will, it always does).

In those moments the choices are so hard.  The attachment pull can feel stronger than anything I’ve never known and I am sure it isn’t QUITE that deep for a smoker giving up their fags, but hopefully the analogy makes sense anyway.  In those moments you have a choice and all anyone wants to do when they have an addiction is make themselves feel better – back to “normal” and often we convince ourselves that the best and easiest way to do that is to just give in and deal with the consequences afterwards (or just put that out of your mind).

I am relieved that I am able to resist my “cravings” these days and I am able to just sit through the pain but I admit the pain hasn’t really got much easier.  When I am regressed like that, the pain is still horrendous BUT it doesn’t last as long as it used to and I am pleased to say that I do bounce back quicker then I used to.

However I do know that it is easy for me to sit and write this now as I am clearly in my adult head but when I am regressed and in my child state, none of this seems to really get through to me.  I write this anyway with the hope that it will… you never know.

I told my husband, T and myself to be quite honest(!) that until now it has felt like torture sometimes not doing what it felt like I wanted to.  There have been times when I have really wanted to just turn up at my mum’s house and see her face as she opens the door to me. I’ve had visions of all sorts of lovely, fantasy visits and I have stopped myself contacting her or going to her house or whatever just because of what T and my husband would say and think. I have had the intellectual knowledge that it isn’t a good idea and that she wouldn’t be able to really give me what I wanted but it wasn’t quite there in terms of my feelings – it still felt like torture and like I was not doing what I wanted to do.  That was a tough feeling to feel and in my regressed states I often used to think to myself “fuck what everyone else thinks I should do – this is my life and my mum!”.

And so that is why when I realised this week that it is MY choice and really and truly is what I want to do (or not do), that has made everything feel so much easier. It no longer feels like torture because it is my choice.

I explained the above to T yesterday on the phone and she said that although it felt like torture and although I was only doing it because of her and my husband, that their voices kept me safe.  She likened it to a child being told not to do something, for example not to touch the iron because it will burn them – it is only their mother’s voice that stops them doing that thing and even then, they might test it out and once they have really learnt it, they don’t do that thing/touch that iron anymore on their own accord.  Does that make sense? It did to me.

She thinks that the last visit with my mother a few weeks ago pushed me over the edge. Seeing her being so clearly angry and hearing her comment on me having put on weight etc was not nice. It really made me realise that she hasn’t changed and she really won’t ever change.  I said to T that obviously it wasn’t nice, but it did me a favour in the long run.

 

 

Blue

I’ve not felt myself today.  Unfortunately it was one of those mornings where I woke up with a headache and felt miserable.  I really hate those mornings because it feels like I have no control over how I’m feeling.  I can’t talk myself out of it or seem to shake it off and they seemingly come from nowhere which is frustrating!

Today was especially frustrating because I have been feeling positive lately and as I have already written, our most recent fertility test went well.  I spoke to T yesterday and felt positive that we had a plan with regards to our fertility, mainly sorting out my thyroid and then trying naturally again for a few months before trying IUI.  I was relieved my tubes were given the all-clear and relieved the procedure was done.  On top of that I have been feeling so much better about things with my mum – so why the headache and sad/grumpy mood today?

I just do not know.  It could be because I am starting to really miss and crave our own house.  I miss just being able to enjoy a day off work even if that means just lounging around at home and not doing much. Maybe doing some housework, watching some crap tele, napping and drinking tea! I just cannot do that here with the in-laws.  The tele is rarely on and when it is on, my mother in law watches a select few programmes which I do not watch (or enjoy).  All other times my MIL is doing crosswords and my FIL is on his laptop.  I feel so bored. Time drags on and I can’t wait for it to be an acceptable time for bed! Today I felt that even more than normal – I am off work because of the procedure yesterday and I feel like I have to get up at a reasonable time and be showered and dressed with the bed made etc.  Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t intend to lay around in a messy house anyway, but its the feeling of not having the choice if that makes sense?

Since our chain restarted recently, its only actually been a few weeks and so we are currently aiming for early October to move – at least another month and whilst on the whole that isn’t THAT long, it really feels it at the moment. The house thing has dragged on for so long now that honestly I sometimes forget that we are waiting for our own house to complete, it feels like a pipe dream.

T is now on a break for two weeks.  I feel fine about that though I will miss talking to her as I always do.  She’s gone away at a good time though really because I feel strong enough about the major things in my life and not having to drive all the way to her house every Tuesday from the parent in law’s will be handy.. but maybe that has something to do with how I am feeling today? Can it be a coincidence that I have woken up feeling like this the day after our last session? Maybe… who knows.

I said to my husband earlier that although obviously I am very, very glad my tubes are clear and that we have no major problems physically that I do feel a bit of an anti-climax.  For the last month or so we’ve had appointments and blood tests and I’ve had scans and then yesterday’s procedure.  We have had forms to complete and leaflets to read and decisions to make and then all of a sudden.. its all done (for now).  This may sound like a weird thing to say because obviously I would MUCH rather be in this position than potentially waiting for more procedures if there were any big problems .. but still, that is a bit of a feeling that I have today. A bit like… what now? It feels like I’ve been able to be really proactive and had stuff to focus on and now all I can do is take a pill every morning and wait to see if it improves my TSH levels enough that we can safely try for a baby again.

I am due to ovulate in a few days time, it feels like a shame to “waste” the chance to try but its the decision we have made and one that is very important.  Besides, living with the PIL’s, we have not been able to get jiggy anyway! It has been weeks (literally) since me and my husband have been able to get anywhere near one another.  That hasn’t bothered me too much – weirdly I don’t feel particularly game when there are PILs walking round all the time but sometimes I think you need that bit of intimacy between you to keep things feeling right and I know I feel closer and happier when me and my husband have a chance to be affectionate which we haven’t been since living here with his parents.

Lastly I know I had a dream last night and that my mother and stepfather were in it.  I can’t remember anything about it now, but I remember waking up and thinking that wouldn’t have helped. Sometimes I have a dream and that dictates my mood for the entire next day – they can be so powerful!! Maybe my subconscious is holding on to feelings from that dream and its a dream mood carryover thing?

The worst of the mood is over and the headache is beginning to lift a little, but it hasn’t gone completely.  Unfortunately I think its here for the rest of the day and I just hope that when I wake up tomorrow morning I feel better.  It feels weird to feel so crappy without really knowing why – does anyone else get this?

I have decided to give caffeine free tea a go because I drink too much tea and because I am so fed up with having to have a wee every ten minutes and according to Dr Google, caffeine makes that worse.  So far and I genuinely cannot taste the difference whatsoever so that can’t be a bad thing can it? I need to lose some weight as I feel so fat and bloated at the moment and I know that won’t be helping my general mood. I miss going to spin class and I miss having the freedom to jump in my car and drive to my local gym.  These are all things I can’t wait to have back when we finally move.  For now though, I could be doing something about that and I could temporarily join a gym up here but I don’t seem to have the motivation – its a viscous circle huh? Having said all of that, maybe it is simply my thyroid making me feel fatigued and flat.

Meh.

Fertility: HyCoSy

I’ve just got home after another trip to the fertility clinic this morning, this time for the dreaded “HyCoSy” procedure.

A HyCoSy is carried out in order to see if the Fallopian tubes are clear and healthy, or blocked. Blocked Fallopian tubes can mean that natural conception is not possible as the sperm and egg cannot meet.

I won’t lie, I’ve been dreading this procedure for weeks. I felt scared shitless by last night and cried when I got into bed from sheer panic and anxiety. Mainly from the pain to be totally honest but obviously what the results could mean for us. If my tubes are blocked that could mean we would never be able to conceive naturally and it would also mean that having IUI was out (which is our next treatment plan if necessary).

Anyway, it’s done now and I’m here to document what happened and how it felt.

The first thing that happened was that the dr collected us from the waiting room and asked me to read and sign a form (consent form I guess). He told me what he would be doing but I already knew in great detail because I’m an obsessive Google-er lol.

Once on the bed and in position, the doctor started by “cleaning” things up making sure everything was sterile etc. He then inserted the speculum (same as what is used during a smear test), he then inserted the catheter which goes through your vagina, through your cervix and into your uterus. I was nervous as hell about this as many years ago I had an IUD fitted and it hurt SO much. This was nowhere near as bad as that I swear.

Once the catheter was in place, a tiny balloon is blown up which holds the catheter in place. It’s absolutely tiny but I guess anything down there that’s foreign is going to feel big isn’t it??

I suddenly felt quite a bit of pain and I told the doctor and the nurse and the Dr said “is that better?” and it was – almost instantly. Apparently they blow the balloon up all the way, then they deflate it a little until it no longer hurts. I was relieved that this meant the speculum was in, the catheter was in AND the balloon was inflated. We were halfway there.

the next step is for them to insert the dye and that’s done via a syringe which is attached to the catheter. It felt uncomfortable, achy, but not painful as such. At the same time as the nurse is doing this, the doctor is using an internal probe/ultrasound to get a look at what’s going on. This is referred to as a “dildo camera” on the internet which is shockingly accurate LOL!!

The doctor was showing me my tubes on the screen and showing me the dye going through but to be honest, I couldn’t make anything out, it was just a blur but I nodded along anyway.

At one point the nurse did an ultrasound on my stomach but I don’t know why but my husband said it was to check the balloon was in the right place.

This went on about 15 mins and eventually he was happy and said we were done. I then realised that I had been clenching my bum LOL and so I tried to relax but my legs were shaking a bit and I guess it was just nerves.

Just as I relaxed and felt him remove the catheter, he inserted another speculum(wasn’t expecting that!) so was a bit of a shock but fine, just that horribly weird feeling when they screw it in place and then he must have cleaned everything up with some sort of solution as I felt very (excuse me for writing this) wet down below and felt like I was having a shower LOL! That was a bit cringe but I guess it’s nothing he doesn’t see all the time.

And then, we were done! Wahhhoooooo.

I got to get up and get dressed and then we went into the consultation room where he said my tubes were both absolutely fine and open. A huge relief.

He then told me that my anti tpo blood test results were back and were “normal”. I was glad but surprised and he said he was also surprised and said “it’s strange”. He said he would prescribe me with 50mg of thyroxine (for thyroid) and that I should take this for 4-6 weeks and get another blood test in 4 weeks to see if it’s helping to bring down my TSH levels which are too high.

And then we left!

I’m now laying on the sofa with a cup of tea. I feel so relieved that it’s over, relieved it wasn’t as painful as I was scared it would be and relieved my tubes are not blocked. I cried on the drive home when the relief hit me.

I have some stomach cramps but nothing bad at all, in all honestly I could be at work but I’m glad I’m not and I feel so tired, but I think that’s mainly to do with how anxious I’ve been feeling. The adrenaline is wearing off I suppose?

All in all, the HyCosy really isn’t bad at all. Certainly not as bad as I was worried it would be and nowhere near as bad as having a coil fitted. Not even close!!

I’m going to pick up my first thyroxine prescription shortly and I’ll start taking that tomorrow morning (an hour before food and only with water – no caffeine etc). My hope is that after having a flush out of my tubes plus starting thyroxine, that we have a better chance of conceiving naturally. Personally we have decided not to try this month (ovulation is a few days away) because we want my TSH levels to come down first.

Apparently your TSH levels should be between 0.5 and 2.0 when conceiving and my levels are currently at 6.0. This is important in pregnancy for fetal brain development and the baby’s nervous system so we are going to sit this month out and hope that next month I’m in a healthier place.

The way it is

I have to admit that my mind has been entirely consumed by all things relating to fertility and my potential thyroid/autoimmune disease lately and so my worries regarding my mum took a back seat, in fact I would go as far as to say that she wasn’t even in the car! Pretty understandable I think and actually, I’m glad. Thank god she isn’t overshadowing everything like she once would have. I think it probably also shows that my anxiety is improving because I’ve managed to compartmentalise and not try to worry about absolutely everything all at once.

Anyway I was bored at work today as my boss is on holiday and I flicked onto a forum that I am on and where I had written a post after seeing her last Sunday and found a new reply. I read the reply and agreed with everything the person had said which was basically that I was perfectly entitled to not see my mother at her house without my husband if I didn’t want to. She actually used the words “The Queen Is Displeased” which I felt hit the nail on the head. She said that my mother won’t ever be 100% happy unless everything is ok her terms and that isn’t a healthy and normal relationship. Also absolutely true.

It was only really as I read this reply and thought about my opinion/thoughts on it that I realised that this had taken a back seat. I think that when I have just seen her I have this sense of urgent panic about me – when I saw her a week ago today, it felt like I needed to prepare myself ASAP. A week on, clearly the urgency has gone. It sounds bad I know but it’s like the danger has subsided… she’s gone back to her place and I’m back in my place and it feels like the moment she would have said something has passed – for now – this time.

Does that make any sense?

Also it would be true to say that I’m incredibly impatient and impulsive and I’m often in a bit of a rush. Maybe it’s just me. Maybe that feeling is all in my head.

Maybe, but I’m not convinced.

Believe me when I say, my mum-dar is incredibly in tune after years of trying to predict her moods and stay safe – she was ANGRY!! She was well and truly pissed at me. She is fed up of having to come out of her house to see me. She’s pissed off that I won’t just “go back to normal”. Her patience with me is wearing VERY thin. Very.

And I’ve said this before I know, but the mum that I met at the garden centre 2 months ago (the one that seemed caring and gentle and cried when I left as she sobbed she loved and missed me) – where was that mum?

That mum (garden centre mum), she would have been pleased with ANY contact from me. A text even! Genuinely I felt that. But last Monday’s mum, she wasn’t happy with anything at all. I mean she did come I suppose, and she didn’t have to… but I could sense she didn’t want to be there.

I’m not sure how she can change so much, in a relatively short space of time. I suspect my (genuinely accidental) mention of going to my Dad’s bbq probably didn’t help. She’s always found my Dad a threat. She would never in a million years eveerrrrr admit that – but I see that now. She’s always been desperate that I need/love her more. Parent wars.

Anyway, back to the point – I thought to myself earlier that I really do need to try to get it straight in my own head my reasons why I won’t go to her house or see her husband. I need to get it straight in my head for my own sake – not for her’s. I will feel more relaxed and calm and at peace if I know what I’ll say to her. It means that when the time comes (which it will), I won’t go into a total meltdown, I’ll just be able to tell her my reasons.

And then I realise that I struggle to articulate my reasons to anyone and I mean anyone, I can’t tell my husband and I can’t even tell myself!

The best I could come up with was “I’ve got used to not going/doing those things and I don’t miss it/them”.

Or…

“I don’t know why really. I can’t explain it. I just don’t want to go on my own”.

I also said to my husband that it was simply because I didn’t want to have to pretend I had forgiven/liked my stepdad but my husband actually said “is it that though, or is that just an excuse?”.

Is that just an excuse?

I want to say no, it’s not… but yeah it could be I suppose.

T says I am just better at protecting myself and I’ve learnt not to be around people or in places that don’t make me feel good. That I’ve learnt to look after myself.

The thing that shocks me about all of this is that I have a real, genuine sense of being happy with things the way they are. That’s actually a huge statement for me. It seems like nothing typed onto the page amongst all the other written diarrhoea, but it’s actually massive.

I am happy with things the way they are.

I don’t want them to change.

I mean, 😮… when did that happen???

Anyone that’s read my blog for a while will probably know I’ve gone through moments/days/times where I’ve felt like I might die from the heartache of missing my mum. Of needing and wanting my mum. Of the void. Of the sadness, the guilt and I’m not even talking about historic pain – the most recent was only 8 weeks ago (post garden centre mum).

How has this happened? Is this real? Will it stay?

I have a real, genuine (sorry can’t think of any other way to describe this) feeling that even in those moments now, those moments when I want to be my mum’s little girl, I can still hold on to the knowledge/feeling somewhere in me that it’s not real or it won’t last – that basically, I’ll regret it if I do anything drastic.

T clearly knows that too, that’s why she always tries so hard to get me to “just sit with it”. She knows the feeling will pass and that I’ll be left regretting everything. Though I reckon in those times I put up a pretty decent argument 🤣 in fact I’ll go as far as to say that sometimes I think I convince MYSELF !!!

I never, never, ever thought I would feel like this and don’t worry, I’m not being cocky or naive here – I absolutely accept that I’ll probably relapse again (more than once) and feel like that heartbreak, agony, void-going-to-kill-me pain isn’t worth it and I’ll want to “fix” everything. And then I won’t again.

I wonder whether this is similar to how someone feels when they have given up alcohol or drugs after a serious addiction. Do they sometimes feel like they can clearly see and feel all the many good things that have come their way since they quit their vice – but then (less and less often) will they relapse? Or nearly relapse?? Genuine question – I don’t know.

I don’t hate my mum. I don’t even feel angry with her. I just feel …. that what we have these days is probably enough for me. That’s sad in a way, but it’s also soooooooooo much less painful than it used to me when I was constantly wishing for more.