When I first started writing this blog, it was with the intention of sharing some of the trials and tribulations of raising a teenager on the verge, and the coping strategies I used to do it. I suppose I was mostly looking for an outlet, and a reason to write every day, since I wasn't working on a novel or anything concrete enough to warrant sitting here for hours on end. I guess I was hoping I might get some feedback or some brilliant ideas that would solve all my problems. Most of all, I just wanted the secret code to a peaceful and harmonious family.
I didn't claim to be savvy in parenting, sociology, psychiatry or medicine, I merely had a lot to say about it. I kind of veered from my original forum, though, when Matt left last spring. The worse things got in our house, the harder it was to write about, so I didn't. I tried being on anti-depressants for awhile, but I couldn't see through the emotionally protective fog to get to the rest of my life - the part that wasn't all screwed up. So I got rid of those and figured I should probably just do what my mom told me I should be doing all along. Get off your butt and get on with it! Stop feeling sorry for yourself! Why don't you put a smile on your face and you'll feel so much better!
I pulled up my bootstraps. I kicked myself in the ass. I became a little obsessive about getting things done, even if they weren't important things, or priorities. I cleaned and ran errands and showed up to volunteer on all the right days at school. I planned parties and attended functions. I used the anger that had built up over those months as fuel. Turns out, it was pretty high octane for awhile. Then, without warning, the anger started to disappear and I didn't have much to work with. Out of nowhere, one day on the phone to Joanne, I burst into tears and said, "I'm not angry anymore. I just miss him. So much." And so, that afternoon, I reinstated my client status with my therapist, MC, who is a Life Coach.
~~ Let me say, I really love her. Yet, I still struggle with this title: Life Coach. Really? Like she's gonna stand on third base and tell me when I should run home? I make fun of things like this all the time - anything even slightly new age puts me on the defensive. Not the kind of defensive where I doubt it and won't try it, but the defensive where I totally and completely buy into it but I'm pretty sure the rest of the world will think I'm a nutcase, so I need to defend myself.
Intellectually, yes, I know this is stupid. I know that the stigmas attached to the study, practice and care of mental health are dying out and that I'm probably a statistic if I'm not in some kind of therapy. But still. There are the voices of my mother, my father, and anyone else in their generation, yammering away in the back of my head somewhere, making me slap my caveat all over the front page of my life before I tell you that, yes, I see a therapist and I take medication. ~~
When I told MC that I wanted to get my shit together without taking drugs, she decided to send me to a Naturopath. (Great! Now I get to mix up potions and press different points on my wrist when I feel like kicking back a bottle of Stoli.) My first appointment is tomorrow, and I'm actually excited about it. I haven't got anything to lose; I don't do well with the drugs and I certainly can't keep up my home-brewed concoction of Sleep, Insomnia, Food and Cabernet, so I'll try something new. I know it won't be a magic cure-all, but I'm hopeful that it might be a start. I'm convinced that finding some physical/physiological balance is the only way I'm going to get out of this ridiculous circle of dysfunction.
When Matt was little, I couldn't possibly have imagined that, by the time he was 17, I would rarely speak to him, or see him only from a distance. Some days, I drive past his school and wonder what would happen if I just went in there to stand in the same room with him. To smell him, to feel his gangly height and crazy hair against me, in a hug I haven't felt in so long. I want to call him, most every day, but I don't know what to say to him. In fact, he called this morning, just to say hello to Jack. I can't even manage to say anything to him when I have him right there on the phone. I pass it to Jack, and wish I could have thought of the right thing to say. The attempts I've made at writing to him have been ignored, and I wonder if he even gets the mail I send him.
Stigma or no stigma, I guess I do need MC standing there on third base. I have no idea how to run home.