Voicelessness and Emotional Survival Message Board

Voicelessness and Emotional Survival => Voicelessness and Emotional Survival Message Board => Topic started by: Hopalong on September 19, 2018, 09:56:11 PM

Title: Fall Stuff
Post by: Hopalong on September 19, 2018, 09:56:11 PM
Had a great day today!
And it goes directly to what I...needy, extrovert, lonesome me...need to do to keep my spirits up. MAKE APPTS WITH PEOPLE. See other hoomins regularly. Sounds simple.

Also, this morning I remembered again...here it comes, light change. So I hauled out my Happylight (SAD green tower light they use in Canadian Coast Guard, did my homework!) and basked in it for 30 minutes this morning). What a difference.

Had my regular Wednesday walk-together with poet pal, plus pooch who'd been thinking I forgot all about how dogs need WALKIES...then we lunched (outside, at a mall cafe, shameless pooch cadging admiration from other lunchers) and then went to a novel workshop we'd both signed up for that turned out to be great. Smart, organized instructor who's going to help participants hone in on the first 50 pages in a really structured, intelligent way. I'm delighted.

Met yet another friend for a beer and fish taco after that...home to feeling normal again, plugged into life, connected with friends...just better.

Thought it'd be nice to share a positive update for a change. Winter will challenge all this but if I remember this lesson, no reason it shouldn't be a good season.

With T this week, got in touch with feelings of shame and identity loss going back to loss of D in my life. Was hard but helpful.

Much xxoos,
Hops
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: Twoapenny on September 20, 2018, 01:08:04 AM
That sounds like such a nice day, Hops!  And Pooch must love all the attention when you're out and about as well.  I have just purchased myself a small lightbox (roughly the size of an IPAD)  I'm not sure if it's helping but I did notice yesterday that several people mentioned the dark nights drawing in and I hadn't really noticed it, so I'm not sure if I'm feeling the effects (of the earlier nights) less than I usually would.  It will be interesting to see as winter comes on.  I'm glad that you've got friends near enough to be able to get together with them.  And the novel workshop sounds great!  I'm sorry the session with T was hard but I hope it helps in the long run xx
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: lighter on September 20, 2018, 07:33:29 PM
Gosh, that was a bitter sweet post, Hops.

It sounds like you're feeling empowered, and fully in charge of yourself,and choices.

Don't know if that's true, but it steadies me to frame it that way. 

Lighter



Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: Hopalong on September 20, 2018, 09:51:51 PM
Thank you so much, botha youse.

Tupp, I'm REALLY happy you got yourself an SAD light! That is awesome. I'll be eager to hear how it affects you. For me, it's been subtle but clear. It does help (as long as I remember to DO it every morning.) I'm so glad you're giving your mood that harmless boost. And I've heard the small boxes as long as there are enough lumens are just as effective.

Lighter, I was touched by your read on my post. I don't think all is suddenly fixed but you spotted just how I was feeling after that good day. I hope to have/choose/plan/actually make more of them happen.

Much gratitude,
Hops
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: Twoapenny on September 21, 2018, 04:43:57 AM
Thank you so much, botha youse.

Tupp, I'm REALLY happy you got yourself an SAD light! That is awesome. I'll be eager to hear how it affects you. For me, it's been subtle but clear. It does help (as long as I remember to DO it every morning.) I'm so glad you're giving your mood that harmless boost. And I've heard the small boxes as long as there are enough lumens are just as effective.

Lighter, I was touched by your read on my post. I don't think all is suddenly fixed but you spotted just how I was feeling after that good day. I hope to have/choose/plan/actually make more of them happen.

Much gratitude,
Hops

Having good days is a boost, Hops, and I think planning them is so important.  It's just unfortunate that when we're tired or feeling low they tend to be the first thing that we stop doing.  I hope you're able to keep booking them up as the winter months draw in; I'm sure Pooch enjoys them as much as you do :)  And I dare say the people that make a fuss of Pooch enjoy it as well :) xx
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: lighter on September 21, 2018, 07:52:40 AM
Hops:

I write about feeling a switch flip when I enter thezine I'd being present, on task and happily engaged at it, sans notice it stress

I'm focusing,now, on what the switch means when it's flipped the wrong way.

Usually I'm engaged in thoughts about the past, it fears about the future.

Perhaps the switch is something I have complete control over, if I can only notice, and bring myself back to where my feet are.

For me, it takes energy to DO that.  It takes less energy to let habits lead, with familiar actions following.  Being engaged in old patterns has it's rewards.  I'm dealing with knowns, no unknowns. 

Fear of success is as real as fear if failure.

It's lovely when the switch flips, and favors us with focus and energy, IME.

Learning to flip it takes work, and energy, IME.  It's exhausting, to be truthful, and that's just noticing and doing it in starts and stutters.

About the light.  A friend goes outside each day at sunrise, and takes in the light by looking left, then right of the sun.  Never directly at it, of course.  He finds this very helpful.  He also goes out near sundown.

Lighter



Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: Hopalong on October 01, 2018, 06:20:30 PM
Thank you, Lighter.
The light I use feels aquariumy, in an odd way (I use the green-filtered one as it's better for retinas). But I love the image of your neighbor's personal sun salute.

I'll be at the beach Sat-Weds...so looking forward to those walks. Very hard to leave pooch behind this time, but it's a big group that's not dog-friendly. Next year I may organize my own houseful again. This time I'm happy to tag on to someone's else's planning, bless 'em.

Not positive about the wifi so nobody worry if I don't post for a bit!

I've been taking things a bit slower since Ngent died and when I get back, need to recruit some new people to help. Fortunately, I've learned over the last two years that this work is never going to be hard to find--I really can fill in a gap in care.

Meanwhile, in TWO novel/fiction workshops and that's startling me more awake, which is good too. And I'll be hosting a new covenant group at my home twice a month. This week is nuts. I also have a new gig showing a fancy condo/office area downtown for some friends from SF who have a sorta plantation property here and fly back and forth a lot. I'll just be the contact person to pass along info, schedule showings, etc, and I'm happy about the hourly rate. They have a top floor they'd like to do as a B&B so I may get that gig too. So it's a nice contrast to have BOTH kinds of hourly work.

Novel...home...friends...matter most of all.

Big hugs all,
Hops
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: lighter on October 01, 2018, 09:58:01 PM
I think B&B work might be a bit easier on your soul, Hops.

You'd still be useful, and needed, but with people on vacation, with bright futures, and chatter around it. 

You sound really good. 

Have a great trip, and I can't wait to hear about your new covenant group.

Lighter
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: Hopalong on October 02, 2018, 03:47:06 AM
Hi Lighter,
I value my work with the very old...their suffering does affect me as does losing someone I've gotten close to, but their perspective and experiences also deepen my spirituality in a way. Seeing their struggles but also their daily determination is humbling. The sheer effort to just keep going in a broken old body is heart-wrenching in some cases but also inspiring. Life is sweet and horrible and amazingly powerful.

I don't know what the B & B folks will be like but I'm pleased about the chance to pop downtown with a purpose and be welcoming to newcomers to the area. They may be privileged folks in great moods and I may be envious of their ability to afford travel! (Got to watch out for that.) And I'm also happy that the hourly rate is $5 better than I'm earning with the elders. Will report in a month or so, the SF lawyer is taking her time getting it coordinated. Has photos and a flyer done (for the separate office floor--I edited that for her today) but not much else.

Thanks for the vacay wishes, I'm looking forward to the break. But will really miss pooch.

Hugs
Hops
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: Twoapenny on October 02, 2018, 12:13:20 PM
Thank you, Lighter.
The light I use feels aquariumy, in an odd way (I use the green-filtered one as it's better for retinas). But I love the image of your neighbor's personal sun salute.

I'll be at the beach Sat-Weds...so looking forward to those walks. Very hard to leave pooch behind this time, but it's a big group that's not dog-friendly. Next year I may organize my own houseful again. This time I'm happy to tag on to someone's else's planning, bless 'em.

Not positive about the wifi so nobody worry if I don't post for a bit!

I've been taking things a bit slower since Ngent died and when I get back, need to recruit some new people to help. Fortunately, I've learned over the last two years that this work is never going to be hard to find--I really can fill in a gap in care.

Meanwhile, in TWO novel/fiction workshops and that's startling me more awake, which is good too. And I'll be hosting a new covenant group at my home twice a month. This week is nuts. I also have a new gig showing a fancy condo/office area downtown for some friends from SF who have a sorta plantation property here and fly back and forth a lot. I'll just be the contact person to pass along info, schedule showings, etc, and I'm happy about the hourly rate. They have a top floor they'd like to do as a B&B so I may get that gig too. So it's a nice contrast to have BOTH kinds of hourly work.

Novel...home...friends...matter most of all.

Big hugs all,
Hops

Wow, Hops, you are busy busy at the moment!  Didn't know about green filters, I'll look into that.  I've just been putting mine to the side so I don't look directly at it.  I do think it's helping though, I'm feeling calmer and I'm not feeling sad at the later mornings and earlier evenings.

I think you are right about there always being work in caring for older people, Hops, and I would guess you have a good reputation and come with recommendations as you've been doing it for a while now.  Very reassuring for people to know they have a good egg looking after them :)  Beach get together sounds lovely, I hope you enjoy that.  And writing group, group meets at home and new job showing people around?!  I thought you were supposed to be unmotivated Hopsie?!  Lol, what a busy time.  I'm really glad you've got so many different things going on.  I think having lots of irons in the fire is a good thing.  I look forward to hearing more about it.
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: lighter on October 02, 2018, 07:49:40 PM
Hops:

I bet pooch will be just fine, and think of the reunion when you get back!  SO MUCH HAPPINESS.

My best friends were in their 80's, till they passed, so I get the value in fellowship with the elderly.  Watching friend H suffer, in the end, was agonizing for us both.  I don't think I'm as brave as you om that regard.  You're a very special person, Hops. 

Here's to your trip, and working downtown for increased pay.  I look forward to the stories.

Lighter 

 
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: sKePTiKal on October 03, 2018, 09:25:40 AM
Have fun at the beach Hops! Eat lots of good seafood - oysters are in season now, they'll be especially good.

It sounds like you're doing just fine, expanding your horizons and discovering new things.
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: Hopalong on October 11, 2018, 12:13:40 PM
Welp, didn't quite go as planned, but all is well after a tough time.

The day I was to leave was Ngent's memorial. I always dread packing even for simple trips (ADD nightmare) and had put it off. Thus I'd have to rush from the church back home and tear off because I was on the "dinner team" at the beach. Long story short, something got to me in the service (lovely, moving) and I started shaking in the pew. Strange. Then after brief visit to his friends at reception, I dashed off on errands, feeling not normal. Walking from my car to library (for books on tape) my heart kicked into very very hard tachycardia, chest pressure, etc. Sat in library massaging carotid for a while and it eventually slowed, but I had that utterly drained, sick-all-over, SOBreath panic attack feeling.

I knew it was 90% more likely a panic attack than anything cardiac, but the fear is real. Given my age, my family history...I was anxious enough to consider going to the ER. But since earlier in life I'd had a lot of panic attacks and really thought this was one, I was reluctant to go and get all tied up with tests and possible admission, etc.

Called my retired social worker friend who offered to come over, and she just let m vent it all out for a couple of hours. I calmed, felt better, and realized I'd be okay.

What I pieced together afterward was that over the last few months there'd been a whole collection of emotionally very taxing things:

Church drama/conflict came to a peak. Shift in emotional safety there since being in the open with how I feel.

Large beach group (church, 12 women) was making me anxious, as groups of women (not here!) often do. Old old old bruises from pecking order stuff early on.

Ngent -- moving, crises, moving again, falls/breaks bones, dies. Stressful service planning; service itself. Moving, stressful. Avoided minister. Started shaking near end of service.

Kavanaugh hearings, obsessive reading of all the coverage. Primal fear/
disappointment. Nobody I know wants to talk about depths of feminist feeling.

Estranged only child birthday two days before.

Need to start new push for more income. Uncertainty.

Two novel workshops; sense that itís now or never adds tension. MUST = fear.

Loneliness. Winter coming. Hating living alone. Fears of aging/dying alone.

That's it, but evidently it was enough. I've been struggling with feelings about my dear T, as well. He in no way intends to do this, because it's likely me projecting something. But I sometimes find that I imagine, because he's so practical and focused, that he's always looking for signs that I'm functioning better, and I react as though I'm being "prodded". I don't think he means to prod, he's just asking. But in some deeper inner battle, I have a cycle of feeling shame, reluctance to explain (again and again) how difficult some life organization and planning and producing are for me. He is kind and compassionate but I think perhaps he doesn't get some things that I feel persistently STUCK about. He's probably frustrated too.

So I haven't left him, but I have searched out a female therapist who uses a method that involves deep empathy, emotional presence, lots of emotional processing. T and I have normally just talked a ton, but there's been little transference, I think is the right term. All I know is after many many years during which seeing him was my refuge, safe place, and comfort zone...I'm coming to be more frustrated with (despite the good relationship with him) the process. I am sick of being stuck. I've told him things like, I'd like to go deeper with this than talking about practical techniques to deal with distractability. I think I need to deal with emotional, even spiritual, losses and realities. He tries to ask deeper questions but I think it's just not who he is. He is a behaviorist, extremely practical, and though I love him dearly, it may be time for me to move on.

Of course, that's another stressful change that could produce NEW anxiety. And that I do not need. At all. So...I'm hoping I could somehow get away with adding her, even once or twice a month, and cutting the number of sessions with him in half. I doubt insurance will allow that.

She's going to call me back to set up an initial appointment to talk about it. May not have a regular opening for a new client until Nov. or Dec., which is fine by me.

----------------
So....where is everybody? I haven't posted because I thought I'd be away (I didn't go to the beach after the attack, just couldn't face the drive alone and had to retreat and rest. Coming out of it now.) And I see that nobody's been posting.

I hope that means everyone is well and calm and enjoying early fall. I missed you.

love,
Hops


Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: Twoapenny on October 11, 2018, 10:46:14 PM
Oh Hops, I'm sorry you had such a scare.  I've had a lot of that chest pain/panic attack stuff myself and it's very frightening and unpleasant to deal with.  The list of things you've had to manage over the last few months is a long one so it's no surprise that something happened because of that, but that doesn't make it less scary to manage.  In some ways when things happen because of emotional situations rather than actual physical health it can be harder to manage - a physical problem can often be fixed or helped with a prescription but emotional stuff is way more complicated.  Can you/will you have a general check up with the doctor just to dot i's and cross t's? Although it does make it another thing to add to the to do list, which can add to the stress!

Changing T's may well be a good thing, Hops, I think sometimes you just get to a different point and need a different technique or approach.  Sometimes a fresh pair of eyes can be a good thing as well; it just shakes things up a bit and gives us a chance to come at something from a different angle.  I hope you can sort the insurance out so you can do half and half for a little while :)

The board has been quiet; personally I have felt a little bit 'posted out' so have been popping in to see what's going on but not writing much myself (have been writing a lot offline).  Autumn is beautiful here at the minute; we've had some gorgeous sunny days and the sunrises at the moment are stunning :)  Glad to see you back and I hope the panic attacks keep to themselves now xx
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: Hopalong on October 12, 2018, 09:56:56 AM
Thank you, ((((Tupp))))!

Now I can take one other anxiety off my list, that everybody on VESMB suddenly disappeared, never to be heard from again!  :?

I love thinking about you being so near the ocean and enjoying those gorgeous dawns and twilights. You actually did it. You made it. You are there.

I bet living near the ocean changes things in body and mind in a lovely way. Though watching what just happened in Florida with a Cat. 5 is sobering. Is where you are UPHILL from the water?

I am still a little sobered and you're right, I should make a dr. appt. Just to have him give it a listen. Thanks for the reminder. This was for me a Cat. 4 anxiety attack and I'd love to never have another. It'd been years, despite everything. Was sorry to break the streak.

But all is well. Going to a small art opening at a winery later today with the kind folks I work for. Just as a friend. So I'm touched that the wife has reached out.

Hope you're doing better and that keeps on...BTW, this is the type of therapy the potential new T practices. When I read the site and watched the founder's video, I thought: that is what I'm missing. www.aedpinstitute.org (http://www.aedpinstitute.org)

love
Hops
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: Twoapenny on October 12, 2018, 11:18:42 AM
Thank you, ((((Tupp))))!

Now I can take one other anxiety off my list, that everybody on VESMB suddenly disappeared, never to be heard from again!  :?

I love thinking about you being so near the ocean and enjoying those gorgeous dawns and twilights. You actually did it. You made it. You are there.

I bet living near the ocean changes things in body and mind in a lovely way. Though watching what just happened in Florida with a Cat. 5 is sobering. Is where you are UPHILL from the water?

I am still a little sobered and you're right, I should make a dr. appt. Just to have him give it a listen. Thanks for the reminder. This was for me a Cat. 4 anxiety attack and I'd love to never have another. It'd been years, despite everything. Was sorry to break the streak.

But all is well. Going to a small art opening at a winery later today with the kind folks I work for. Just as a friend. So I'm touched that the wife has reached out.

Hope you're doing better and that keeps on...BTW, this is the type of therapy the potential new T practices. When I read the site and watched the founder's video, I thought: that is what I'm missing. www.aedpinstitute.org (http://www.aedpinstitute.org)

love
Hops

Lol, yes, I would be completely lost without the forum!  It's been quiet, I've been processing a lot and it's good but tiring so I've been checking in but not much else.  We are a very long way from both the sea and the river in terms of flood problems, and uphill from both as well so no worries for us on that front but yes, I find being near water so soothing and calming.  This time of year is great as the holiday makers and warm weather surfers have packed up for the year (too cold now) so the only people out are the real surfing fanatics that go out whatever the weather.  I just love being around people that have a passion for something.

The art event sounds lovely, I hope you enjoy that :)  And yes, a quick check up with the doctor, just to be on the safe side.  Those panic attacks are very unpleasant to deal with so I hope this one was just a blip and you won't be troubled again.  I will have a look at that website later; I'm glad you've found someone that has lit that light for you xx xx
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: sKePTiKal on October 12, 2018, 12:01:11 PM
Sorry you felt the lack of posts here, Hops! I've been on the road (and not reading) a LOT, and not doing much of anything online the past week. We got in last night and have just about got "the trip" stuff cleaned up... and almost back into our "regularly scheduled programming".

That therapy sounds as if it would be VERY beneficial for you Hops. (And it holds some attraction for me, too.) Panic attacks are really awful things to go through. Not unusual, though. My HS BFF was telling me on this trip, that she just had one - again - after many years free of them, due to losing her Dad. I've had my share... and other more "meltdown" type things.

My brother insisted I visit his new house (almost an hour from our meeting location) and of course, my Mom is there. Maybe you remember my last face to face with my Mom... LOL. I didn't want to; have enough on my plate with the next generation mother-daughter stuff. But I got talked into it anyway. It WAS fun to talk to my brother now. His divorce and his years of counseling have had a real positive impact on his interpersonal functionality.

I'd gotten a voicemail while following brother to his house and didn't hear the phone; expected it to be him about lunch locations. I didn't check it till later and it was my mom, complaining because I didn't let her know I was going up there; hysterically claiming she was going to move out - somewhere - at 85 and multiple health problems; and basically embodying the "negative person stereotype". It doesn't affect me much anymore, but I took a tongue-lashing from the D about my not wanting to see my mom... and how I needed to get past it and find other ways to deal with her. She isn't entirely "wrong" about her observations... but she's not entirely "right" either.

And I've been unwilling to even think about it or look at it while on the road.

Hope you're enjoying this gorgeous fall weather Hops! It's a great day for a walk.
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: Hopalong on October 13, 2018, 11:17:59 AM
No apologies, Amber!  8)
It's no problem, this here's all optional, ain't it? (Just picture a big-eyed waif painted by the weird big-eyed-waif-painting-lady-whose-husband-claimed-credit, clutching a laptop while looking out terrified at a post-apocalyptic landscape...)

Ahhh, now I feel better.

Happy to hear from you but really sorry about the family things, esp your mother. I noticed (forgive, it's compulsive) that you used passive voice three times in describing all of that, and it it me that maybe that reflected a little piece of residual helplessness that her toxicity injects. (Bro insisted, got talked into, received a tongue lashing...). I was picturing you saying I choose NOT to x or y, I am LEAVING this convo for a bit... But then saw it as more a bit of frozen helplessness.

I know. That's not an (((((Amber))))) word. But we all still have that vulnerable inner child, and I could see her getting buffeted a bit. I know, know, know, you will regain your feet in the wise and deep-thoughtful way you always do. Don't ever let the "one step back" make you forget your math, okay?

I do feel better, though my chest is still tight and I know the old Big A[nx] is back to wrestle with. I have a doc appt Weds to check ticker and discuss maybe, one, short-term, round of something Rx.... If it's typical, I'll suggest or he'll offer (I'm thinking buproprion) and I'll get the Rx, take it once or twice and quit. I just hate brain meds. But if the Big A is back for a long round... I'll try to be sensible.

Going out yesterday another wave, felt faint by the car and heart pounded again. I tend to get a bit almost agoraphoby when the Big A hits, it's just hard to deal publicly. Chit chat while managing even mild Anx is nearly impossible. Went to the art gallery thing and fortunately it was in a gorgeous mountain setting, small crowd, and lovely friend/employer artist was just happy to see me, as was her dear hubs. So I did a wine tasting (self medicating much?) and got through it okay. Felt instantly better once home and back in the escape pod (bed with laptop).

Sigh. One day at a time.

The big thing for me with the Big A is that when one is over-sensing/fearing own heart, it's tough to take a vigorous walk. Still doing walks with my friend every Weds but need to amp that up. Another question for doc, is there a supervised PREVENTIVE rather than rehab kind of exercise program? Probably so. I just hate gyms and it's hard to explain both the trigger-back AND the Big A to a busy trainer who's just into getting everyone leaping about.

End of whine.

You're right, it's beautiful out.  :?

Lots of love,
Hops
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: sKePTiKal on October 14, 2018, 09:14:58 AM
Hops, as I understand "stuff" - walking is the preventative and it's low-impact enough to not cause other issues, as a result. Maybe it's time to increase distance a bit? or add in a hill? You want to get your heart rate up - MODERATELY and repeat often - to be "aerobic". So that you're not overdoing it, or going past your body's need to "rest & recover"... before getting the heart rate up again. Small time frames to start - 2 mins, 5 mins, 10 mins, 15... This is how one builds muscle, gets stronger and increases stamina without over-exerting yourself.

Hol & I both know - for us - that the best anti-anxiety Rx is physical activity. Pick a kind - any kind! There is something about "being centered in your body", even for a limited amount of time, that counteracts the jangly oversensitive sympathetic nervous system... by engaging the parasympathetic system. My downfall is being too head-centered, more often than not. (Could be an ego-thing too.)

Hol & I are month 3 of trying to live together (with a month off for her road trip) and it's going pretty well, all things considered. But it certainly made the visit to my mom more complicated - due to her observations and way of expressing them - for me. I think we sorted it all out.
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: Hopalong on October 14, 2018, 09:36:40 PM
Thanks (((((Amber)))).

I do know how exercise works (I used to write books for the biggest consumer health publisher in the US and interviewed top medical experts for years--plus reading about health and nutrition constantly, still do). It's not lack of knowledge, it's that the big A causes something like mild agorophobia, plus an irrational fear of exercising alone. I hate and feel ashamed of that and know it's irrational, but...it is what it is. If the tachycardia kicks in when I'm alone blocks from home, and I faint as a result, would feel pretty awful. So that's why I'm hoping there may be a *supervised* (hence, with expert help and company) preventive cardiac exercise program I can afford. Will ask the doc Weds.

I know you and H can work things through. I think I was reacting to a mild sense that you sounded mildly muted. Amber muted? Made me over-reach in advice! 'Cause I love you. (And, non-objectively, 'cause I have a distorted fear of family.)

Happier note? Got a kind and intelligent reply on the find-a-geezer website from a man only two hours away. Hmm. I've ignored that site for months, but as the cold and dark return, this seems to be a time I'm more willing to submit to the incredible tedium of wading through messages, fending off the automated inquiries, and sifting for the gents who are willing to actually compose a sentence or two, instead of the click-one-button to tell her: Wanna Chat? Like Yer Pic! Feel Free to Send Me a Message (since I'm not going to bother to write you one...) kind of thing. He did and I'm pleased. And after ignoring my Inbox there for months I did find a few reasonable and sane and pleasant overtures. Amid the "here's a cool selfie of me in my bathroom" ones that just kind of break my heart for them.

Maybe THIS time....? Or not. But it felt like a good thing to do today.

Back in the saddle tomorrow with car inspection, a T visit (same T, haven't seen the possible new one yet), library (bit of a walk there), grocery shop, and my young pal (30s, old office-mate art director guy who likes to share his life-stuff, which I just love hearing) coming by for a beer in the evening. Coming back to life.

xxxooo
Hops
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: Twoapenny on October 15, 2018, 03:55:40 AM
I'm glad you're coming back to life, Hops :)  And I hope there is some sort of exercise group you can go to.  Do you have walking groups there?  We have 'Walking For Health' here, regular meet ups (usually weekly), generally over relatively flat ground, people can chat as they walk or keep to themselves depending on preference.  What's the big A, if you don't mind me asking? Anxiety? I hope the doc has something to recommend at any rate.  They do quite a lot here for people in different situations with regards to exercise; there are the usual private classes but also quite a lot of things like Chairobics (exercise sitting down) and 'gentle' keep fit for people getting back to health after a set back of some kind.  I hope you find something similar.

I love the idea of a 'Find A Geezer' website :)  Sounds so much more fun than calling it dating or lonely hearts :) Lol.  Kind and intelligent sounds good, Hops, although I'm slightly concerned that people continue to send bathroom selfies!  I've just never understood it but hey ho.  Sounds like virtual flashing to me.  It would be nice for you to have a pleasant distraction so I hope nice chap at least turns in to some nice chats :) I hope your appointments go well and chap coming over for beer and chat sounds lovely! xx
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: Hopalong on October 15, 2018, 07:32:56 AM
Thanks, Tupp!

Yes, there are walking groups. The "big A" does mean anxiety. Stupidly, groups of strangers hiking at different paces are A triggers...I can never tell when asthma will happen and because of the big A, if it's surging (happens to be now) I rarely go to those. I do walk with close friends with whom I feel no embarrassment.

The reason I'd like a medically supervised ex program like something you mention is because it is medically supervised, which will help me feel safe, as I feel like an infant when the A is aggravated. Once that genie is back in its bottle, I won't need the coddling, I hope.

The nice geezer wrote and seems very intelligent and I look forward to meeting him. He did use various phrases that made it sound as though he's into a lot of space, having "outgrown" the need for daily interaction, etc etc. But then mentioned that if the right bells ring, nothing would get in the way. So if one can tell from writing, maybe he's commitment-phobic, but I may be over-interpreting. It's much better for me to ask direct questions. Or to be perverse, I could jolly him along to our first lunch meeting (somewhere soon to enjoy the fall colors) and sit down with a bright smile and go, "Hi! I'm husband hunting!" and see how long it takes him to fall under the table. Heh heh.

Anyway, we'll see. I enjoy the process even when it doesn't take, usually. And I'm a little commitment-phobic myself. He also said he's looking for someone to "hang out with" which doesn't sound like commitment either. I don't know if that's pre-emptive, if he's so appealing he's swamped with contenders, or what. But I usually find my guts will give me some good hints off the bat. I hope I can trust them.

I liked the fact that at my age he still works FT, sounds quite vital, and even has an 11 year-old son who's with him summers, etc. He's divorced. Who knows. I'm curious and open but not gonna go too far with fantasies, I hope.

With boyfriend B, I was attracted at first, but wish I had acted on my realizations faster when his controlling, entitlement personality stuff surfaced. I do spend a lot of time understanding men, and think it might serve me better just to react to them in a quicker way. B. wasn't evil but I sure felt strongly confirmed in my decision to end it the last time I saw him, when he both grabbed and kissed me unexpectedly...felt uncomfortable and again, his felt like a "taking touch" rather than a giving of affection. My whole being went whew, dodged that bullet, as I left. It wasn't fear of touch, it was dislike of that kind of touch. No real connection because he was always taking charge. No space for me to move toward him because he was always pressing.

Anyhow, new fella may be different. Or elusive. We'll see, and it's good to remain open to good possibilities.

You know I'll diary it here. Meanwhile, the quotidian beckons and I'm just wanting to keep things gentle, simpler, calmer. Way way way too much emotional stress recently and I'm scaling back on all I can. Health stuff and writing stuff and even work stuff. I need balance.

Ate well this weekend, that was something. Not what Lighter would call cooking but I was pleased. Brown rice and vegs in a few different formats. Siracha mayo makes everything better, even an egg!

Hugs
Hops
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: Twoapenny on October 15, 2018, 08:20:09 AM
Aw Hops, I didn't realise that walking with strangers would trigger anxiety, that does make it difficult for you to do regularly.  Yes I see what you mean about the medical supervision aspect, it's just that extra safety layer, isn't it - just in case.  I'm like it with my son with his epilepsy; he hasn't had a seizure for a year and a half now but I still feel anxious about leaving him and feel more comfortable leaving him with people I know can manage the seizure well, should it happen.  So I see what you mean, it makes sense to have that medical expertise on hand, just in case.

Would be so funny if you turn up for your first date with new chap in a wedding dress ;) Lol.  I've said to friends I think that would be a good test of character for someone, whether they see the funny side or not :)  He sounds as if he may just be a 'happy with his life but open to a bit more' sort of a chap and I think they're the best kind - not desperate to settle down or force a relationship to happen but happy to get involved if the right person comes along.  But yes, very difficult to gauge from a few emails and always a danger of reading things that aren't there - better to be direct and find out what's what.  And I'm sorry about your last meeting with B, it doesn't sound nice.  But good that you saw it for what it was.  And brown rice, veggies and siracha mayo sounds yummy :) xx
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: sKePTiKal on October 15, 2018, 09:04:46 AM
Yeeeeaaahhhhhhh.... I understand a bit about physical limitations creating anxiety and then a negative feedback loop... right into a self-limitation "idea" of what I can/can't do. Mine is also mixed up with emotional crap. (Isn't aging a bitch?) So, I do understand Hopsie. I hope you find the right situation for you.

Part of my recent "stress" - is that Hol is pushing on this new acceptance of mine, re: physical limitations and social situations. She remembers the mom from 20 years ago, that was still "The Little Engine That Could"... and I know and clearly SEE that that level of activity, to-do's, and multiple things going on, all at the same time... provoke a serious resistance on my part because I don't like how long it takes me to recover, after pushing too hard, too long... to do x, y or z. She is extremely verbal and has the words to explain emotional reality... and it takes me much longer.

But, we're OK. I know her concern comes from a good place and while she's not patient enough to let me talk, ramble, explain... and basically ask why I'm not allowed to reject ideas of things that I've already tried AND DON'T LIKE TO BE ENGAGED IN... I think I found a way to get her to finally start understanding that I'm NOT who I was 20 years ago. She has a hard time, with being still and quiet and just "being"... and doesn't see the value of it YET. So.... the deal we made is we'll both "give" a little on both sides and see what happens.

In particular, she doesn't get how uncomfortable I am in fast-moving cities, with crowds of people. That conversation evolved to the point that she was saying one just filters the chaos out... and I could finally get her to hear that I don't even HAVE that filter... altho I've been trying to acquire one. When I'm tired, out of my comfort zone, or upset/irritated... it's not possible to maintain the concentration necessary for the filter. And then I am fully engaged with lizard brain - even if I have trained it enough to not make a spectacle of myself in escaping or "shutting down".

This is probably what you heard from me Hops. But it sounds worse than it is. It's actually been a pretty fun and easy adaption process to being together so much.
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: Hopalong on October 15, 2018, 01:54:13 PM
This is SO recognizable to me:
Quote
she was saying one just filters the chaos out... and I could finally get her to hear that I don't even HAVE that filter... altho I've been trying to acquire one. When I'm tired, out of my comfort zone, or upset/irritated... it's not possible to maintain the concentration necessary for the filter.

Funnily enough, it's a spot-on description of the feelings/struggles I've had with my dear T. With the very best of intention, he's often saying to me "One just does XXX" and quickly forgets my core issues with both filters and focus, and his eternal fixit drive (all men, even Ts!) means I'm frustrated because I just have to process, self-protect, move like a sleepy manatee to a point where I'm able to take more on board. Poor guy has been uber-patient.

The possible new T had a cancellation today so I got to see her right after him. It helped a lot that she knows and equally likes current T, and understood what I was describing. After 30 minutes the truth came out--current T tries to work with me to MANAGE the pain and fear cycles I deal with. But what I want (and what attracted me to her modality) is to HEAL what's underneath them.

I've encapsulated the loss of my D. But when more and more stresses pile on, it really is too heavy. I'm already walking around with a cannonball hanging from a chain attached to my heart. I can do that and I am capable of happiness. But to find PEACE is a long, slow thing...must be like Pilates for the self/soul/emotions.

Anyway it may be a few months, and I've still got to check whether my medigap will cover it...but I'm hopeful. If not, I'll take a fresh perspective with existing T, and won't go through panic about that either. All will be well.

love
Hops
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: Hopalong on October 15, 2018, 04:38:40 PM
Tupp, the wedding dress on first date idea is hysterical! If only I had the...eggs.

Would be even funnier if one could hold a straight face and very sincerely say, I'm looking for a casual friend relationship.

You're giving me creative ideas! Wicked you.  :lol:

Hugs
Hops
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: sKePTiKal on October 16, 2018, 10:23:17 AM
Hops, I think wacky ideas like that go a long way to putting our anxieties into the proper "slot" of importance. There is a subtle difference between Anxiety and "that little voice of intuition"... and perhaps (I'm talking to myself here) not knowing the difference between them, for a fact, is one of the reasons for paralysis or self-limitation.

Risk aversity is another thing involved. "Once burned twice shy" is a truism because it IS true, to an extent. We tend to "learn" to try to avoid mistakes by looking/listening for those signs... and the fear-factor of reliving a past ugly situation piles on top of the intrinsic issues of "I don't matter" (or what I want doesn't matter) conditioning.

But I've been involved in total "over-thinking" & "over-analyzing" space with Hol now long enough that I recognize that it might be possible for her to "see" and decide very quickly what to do - as fast as she processes multi-levels of experiential information, but for me.... my feet get stuck in the emotional mud and creates an additional problem. That of needing a good bit of time to feel I've understood the option and know what I want and to have thought through and weighed the available options and the inherent consequences of those options.

"Flow" or "The Zone" is the total opposite of that space... but that is a solitary experience for me and is impossible with lots of other people around.
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: Hopalong on October 16, 2018, 10:47:55 AM
Your flow is YOU and I imagine this adjustment is pretty hard, Amber.
Loads of love involved but you still have your nature and your needs.

I think you're right about a sometime blur between Anx and intuition.

I've gotta critique somebody's story and then prepare to go spend a
few hours with the Magnolia lady I used to help...she asked me to come
back and help a bit as she too is moving to Assisted Living. I kind of
dread it because she's so chaotic, so I'll need to have a firm setting
of serenity. If she triggers me too much I'll "be unavailable" for more.

Hope today goes well and you're not feeling bossed around.
You don't deserve that. Support and company is one thing.

love,
Hops

Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: lighter on October 16, 2018, 12:52:47 PM
I'm sorry to read you missed your trip,  and had a panic attack,  ((Hops.))

I've been w/o signal, on a dairy farm, and need to catch up with the board.

Sister comes in tomorrow from Canada, and the kids have not been keeping house for 10 days I've been gone.

Will check Tupps thread, do some stuff, then come back to see what everyone's up to.

Again, I'm so sorry you missed your trip, and had that scare, Hops.

Lighter
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: Hopalong on October 16, 2018, 03:32:42 PM
Thanks, Lighter.
Good of you to check in...farm time sounds heavenly.
And sounds like you've got lots to catch up on at home,
with kids and company.

Enjoy it ALL! Safe re-entry.

hugs
Hops
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: lighter on October 17, 2018, 11:08:34 AM
Hops:

You have had a lot going on in the last months, plus all the things underneath.  It flipped my stomach to read about your day, bc we all have some variation of days where we can't be busy enough to keep the difficult feelings under the surface.

I've yet to identify it as "an opportunity for growth" before feeling struck and blindsided when the dam breaks. 

I so want to deal with the difficult feelings as they come up, so I'm shedding heaviness, and nt collecting. 

I can't find my computer so must tap out replies with one finger.

I'm glad you're posting, and fully support a change in Ts if that seems right to you.  Your old T should understand, and wish you all the best, imo. 

The wedding dress is hysterical, Tupp.
"I'm looking for a casual relationship" Hee!

So funny: )

Lighter



Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: Hopalong on October 23, 2018, 08:50:30 AM
Thanks, Lighter. I really appreciate that understanding...how things can hit before you fully take in what they are or what they weigh.

I'm doing better, albeit two frustrations, about therapy:
--the potential new T is lovely and everything I'd like to do but she is an LPC (licensed professional counselor) rather than a psychologist, social worker or shrink...so my medigap won't cover her (nor will medicare). I don't feel I can commit to paying out of pocket.
--my doctor agreed to write me a trial of buproprion, the most benign anti-anxiety/depression Rx I could find and, after two night of double-volume tinnitus, I realized that like others can be, it's ototoxic.

So I'm back to simpler things like melissa (lemon balm), magnesium calm, and chamomile). Plus melatonin and a crumb of ambien for sleep. Worked better last night than it had been.

Good news is that there is a supervised-exercise program available to me, out of pocket but not expensive at all, convenient, and after a couple months of that I should be over the panicky stuff and ready to exercise solo like a big girl. I'm very happy about this and eager to start. They're contacting my doc for the referral they need so hoping all that goes through.

Just amazing how many obstacles there are to preventive care, eh? When if one wants a healthier country.... ah well, politics.

Hugs
Hops
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: Hopalong on October 23, 2018, 11:38:13 AM
The kind potential-T referred me to a psychologist who's in her first year of AEDP (the type of therapy I posted the link about) training. Because she's a psychologist Medicare WILL cover her. So I'm going to set up an appt with her and see how it feels.

Have NO idea how I would (nor if I should) say farewell to current-T/human security blanket. That's a problem for later, if I decide to go forward with a new female T. I know he would support and not guilt me...it's me, feeling dependent on him, who is anxious about it.

Yikers,
Hops
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: lighter on October 24, 2018, 05:36:03 AM
Hops:

I hope you can find a way to reframe the safety blanket T, and new experiences with Female T.... trying a new T doesn't mean you can't go back to your old T.  It doesn't mean relationship with old T will be impacted negatively.  You're an adult, with the ability to choose, make mistakes, find new solutions, and keep moving ahead with new experiences adding wisdom. 

It seems like you're experiencing some measure of anxiety over "what if?"  That anxiety is in the future, and likely won't happen. 

Look at it this way.... What if you align with new T in a way that brings growth, and joy?

What if you're referred to a T, by the F T, and that T refers you to an amazing T? 

You can't know what comes next.  You can follow your instincts, and frame each decision in the best possible light.  Mistake or no mistake, there will be lessons.  Those lessons are meant for you, and you're exactly where you're supposed to be.  All will be well. 

Breath.  Snuggle pooch.  Enjoy this fall weather.  See that new T without fear.  Explore, and know you're entitled to explore.  It's OK.

Lighter



Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: Hopalong on October 24, 2018, 09:34:50 AM
Thank you, ((((Lighter)))).

That is exactly what I need to be saying to myself.
I appreciate it.

I'm embarrassed by anxiety, to tell the truth.
But I shouldn't be. I should just work on relaxing
and thinking more positively about what's ahead.

hugs
Hops
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: Hopalong on October 24, 2018, 09:57:50 PM
Then again, maybe I'll relax on November 7th.

Sweet bleedin' Jebus.

Hops
Title: Re: Fall Stuff
Post by: lighter on October 25, 2018, 01:16:36 PM
Well..... oldest dd and I voted yesterday, and our State is enjoying record turn outs for early voters.  I'll just be glad for that, and all woke discussions, bc they're a good thing coming out of the chaos. 

Also, try to assume observer mode regarding your anxiety.  It's not a good or bad thing... it's something for you to notice, and pay attention to.  It's a messenger, and you don't know what it needs you to hear....
yet.

You're smart, brave, and sensitive, so you'll sit with it, and figure it out. 

Stop watching the news for a bit, Hops, if you think it would help. 

Lighter