What The Shrink Won't Tell You That Just Might Be Your Key To A New Outlook On Life
Reality Isn't Always AttractiveThis blog is not about pretty niceties, it ay even seem a bit unattractive to you, regardless of how well thought out my construction was. There is no foul language. However, if I unintentionally offend your senses, I apologize. No, I am not a pessimist, a worrier, yeah sometime. I run from negativity, but it seems like negativity has been chasing me since before I knew its identity and I couldn't do anything
|Because dream catching involves crafts|
Today I told off the attitude that I felt chasing me. I can't say that I used nice language because that is not my default, not my mother's either. You see, I think that a bad, defeatest attitude is a lot like a bully. I did not face off and conquer my first bully until I was 19 years old. A few times in the past I mustered the ability to fight for basic human rights...my son's. I felt protective of my son, but not of myself. I havesuffered from a low self-esteem, more like no self-esteem. So ironic because I have an above average IQ, I am a big picture thinker and I am logical as well as pretty grounded in my philosophies. But if you believe that you are nothing, whatever your blue print actually is, regardless of how scientifically great, then that is what you become someone who isn't anyone of value on the inside.
Growing A Spine
I was in the US Ar Force basic training at Lackland Air Force base. Unlike my fellow recruits I had contracted my first gastrointestinal virus in my life and I couldn't hold down my own saliva. To say that my morale was low is an understatement. I wanted to die. I was taking phenergan 3 times a day, Maalox and ibuprofen, forcing fluids and food in myself and training anyway. I had been accused of malingering by my training instructors and was really hopeless. Then I took a walk to the chaplain and talked out every feeling that I had about my experience...and my words weren't pretty. I had a lot of emotional garbage to unload along the path across the base. By the time I finally saw the chaplain I felt better. I couldn't tell you why before today.
I got back to the squadron and then in a few days, which felt like the longest days of my life, we moved on to our out of doors training week. That was my favorite week there. It was like going to church camp on steroids. I felt alive and like I was a part of something bigger than myself. I even got a coin on our
I was feeling great until we got back to the squadron. There was this one annoying trainee that I had previously hoped would suddenly be enlightened with the knowledge that she was a pain in the patuhkee.
I was repeatedly being badgered by a spoiled rotten, selfish southern Californian with no sense of service before self, or that other people mattered. She had led a cush life and I was the opposite, yet there I was overcoming health issues to succeed in passing my time run and beat her run time. My legs are longer.
Well, Airman/Trainee Ghee-oh(name altered for pronunciation) put another 2 cents in and I had enough. I knew my capabilities and had confidence in myself for the first time ever. I told her off, loudly and I used adult language. She shut up. And I got some looks of respect that I never anticipated from my fellow flight mates.
Later in the week after most of the girls had gone and we were in the restroom getting ready, she made a snide comment about kicking my caboose. I was applying make up to go out on the town. I put down my applicator. I then looked her in the eyes and said, "I've got nothing to lose. Let's go." The widening of her eyes was momentarily and then she pretended boredom and said, "Not worth it." Probably because unbeknownst to me, my rear looked amazing and intimidating on my 5 foot, eight inch very fit frame.
Timid and controlled Amy Jo had finally taken a stand and spoke her mind! I felt then that I could do anything! I had beaten that weak-minded squishy tart at push-ups, sit-ups and running time, and I knew that my intellect and self-discpline were superior. I did not have any self-doubt. I refused to believe all of the negative things that she had been saying, because I knew that they weren't true. I knew what I had overcome, knew what I could push my body and mind to do, and most importantly I knew the strength of my soul. I had unequivocal integrity and humility. I also had no idea that I was attractive beyond the attention that my chest got. "Beautiful" was a word that I did not hear about myself until I was 21 over the phone from my first boyfriend and I accepted it.
Why did it take until 19 for such a momentous event to occur? I was taught that meekness meant to be a doormat all my life and that self-defense was wrong, selfish and sinful. I had no practice defending myself because as a child I was not allowed to and then I was taught that I had no right to because my needs and wants never mattered. I had terrible programming, but it worked. I was a compliant child. The problem was that my thinking was so warped that when I began to take care of myself as a young adult, I felt guilty, dirty and like I needed to punish myself for becoming a woman. Where was my fighting spirit
|No Thinking Or Self-Expression Allowed|
My adolescence was anything but nurturing. I will not regale you with the horror stories of my childhood, that is not your burden to bear. I am going to tell you that I learned that I needed deodorant only after needing it in public at the age of 10. I was unfamiliar with what a training bra was and that my late grandmother took me to get my first bra at the age of 11 and I was already a B cup. I did not know that a female should shave their under arm hair once it comes in as a socially acceptable hygienic practice until at the age of 12 I was in a swimsuit and publicly humiliated at a church youth gathering. Any effort that I made to embrace and celebrate my womanhood was literally met with my mother's brand of discipline. The regular milestones on the journey to becoming a woman that many young girls experience were unknown to me until I learned about them from other women or read of them in books.
Not A Girl, Not Yet A Woman
|My hair was way shorter|
Britney Spears should have sang that song a lot earlier in her career for my benefit. Womanhood was unfamiliar territory. I was great as an airman, a softer soldier than an Army soldier, but not at navigating the social waters of the melting pot that was a military training base. I had left my social safety net in Colorado Springs, people who knew me as the adoptive daughter of bible college students. I had just begun to flourish as a person. Why did I leave? I thought that it was the only way to be able to afford to go to college, I needed to be able to get out to a place of my own, I wanted to travel and see the world and meet really attractive and intelligent guys like in books and on movies. I was so unprepared.
It wasn't enough to be physically fit. I wanted to have the close friendships that I had back home and thedates. I lost myself as the days turned into weeks and months that I had to wait for my top secret clearance. Whatever I had gained in basic training began to soften as I had nowhere to work it out. The females were cruel and I only felt like fighting. I didn't want to fight, I wanted to have people like me for my personality like at home. I only hung out with guys as a solution. Which was ok until I was attracted to them and learned that men don't date "one of the guys". That was a painful lesson.
Not just a fantastic movie. I had a moment when the inception of fear took place. The freak show of the response that my military leadership had to 9/11 happening was awful. "Make sure that your living wills are updated, who your beneficiary is and call your next of kin." Of course to make matters even more interesting we were told what would happen should we be successful at our intelligence jobs and that if we made into and AWAC, should we be attacked we would go down with the plane and not evacuate with
Diagnosis by the stunted behavioral health personnel was post traumatic stress disorder-PTSD. Then again later on with a clear scientific explanation by a very kind mental health professional who also
Trauma again and again and again. It kept chipping away at me, eroding any confidence that I had in myself of being of any importance, of being lovable, worthy of positive attention, strong, sane, of being a person at all. I felt like a hole in the world my whole life. The only times that I could remember having felt like Iwas alright, like my needs, wants and desires mattered were only a handful; at the age of 3 1/2 before my mother went crazy, at 6 before my step-dad wouldn't believe that I had been harmed in a foster home that he put us in, when I was living with my adoptive parents at 17 and 18, when a man loved me and chose me forever...that was it. It felt like a terrible joke that I was a parent. Everyone had abandoned and thrown me away and now I was supposed to go against everything that I knew, to fight this PTSD monster and become someone and something better than my parents?!
The Paralytic Motivation
I didn't give up, I got motivated and I got educated; parenting classes, mommy groups and instructional television programming on inspirational teachings. I worked hard and I even mustered the confidence in myself to go to school again for something that I liked. But all the motivation in the world won't work to get you out of bed when your nervous system goes haywire and you are in complete unabating agony for 6 hours. I went to the ER that night in the fall of 2010, actually I was dropped off by my mother's second husband who was taking care of my son overnight so I could get treated and told to find my own way home. I had to have a shot of morphine. I had been working part-time and in school, I had barely enough money to pay my bills and get pull-ups for my 2 1/2 year old son, so a taxi was out of the question.The only person who could pick me up was a party who was interested in me for all the wrong reasons. I had no idea why my body had betrayed me and scared me with that much pain and I had nowhere to go for help and no one who had any answers. My body that had seen me through basic training, going out dancing 6 nights a week before marriage, and countless good times had become my own enemy. I was so afraid. I had no idea if I would deal with that pain again, how soon, or how bad. I was too ashamed of my life as a single parent to talk to my childhood best friend, her life was one that I wanted; husband, permanent home, rather sane family and somewhere nice. So, I ran and I tried trusting people who were not healthy. Everywhere I ran I was chased down by trauma, fear, anxiety and depression.
You can't outrun fear and the seeds that it carries. You can change your hair, go out, wear different
The truth shall set you free! You are made to succeed! You have everything inside of you that you need to be successful! You have drive to do more than just exist! Why?
|The Truth Is Often Right In Front Of Us|
You have a sense of humor! Laughter really is the best medicine. Remember in the Harry Potter installment of The Prisoner of Azkaban when the children were being taught by In Defence Against the Dark Arts, Professor Lupin how to deal with a Bogart? They were prepared by being told that the Bogart would manifest their deepest fear and that the only way that they could defeat it was to turn it into something funny because laughter would render it powerless! Think what you will of that book and movie series, but the author is on to something.
Today I dealt with waves of torment as I tried to wash my dishes to music and stay objective. I am so glad that I listened to my son who got me watching Dr. Who. And after I took him to his Caravan meeting this afternoon, and after my shower, I sat and watched Dr. Who I was transported out of my small and unhappy world into another. I was completely distracted and I caught myself laughing out loud. Then I had this odd feeling of euphoria and then a sudden realization that I didn't feel fear and the onslaught of the awful thoughts that had been plaguing me non-stop.
Something inside of me had severed the connection to whatever had been tormenting me. I applied my Dr. Who viewing experiences to my circumstance and I told off the negative way of thinking, like it was an attitude that I didn't agree with anymore and wouldn't accept. Do you see what I did? I would no tallow that way of thinking to continue! I told it out loud just as much and I didn't waste any more energy thinking about it and continued watching my show. I got up to go get my son a new person feeling free, capable and successful. Now I refuse to allow any defeating thoughts to take root in my mind, no negative thoughts that I will fail at life, no bad perspectives of myself and I am certainly going to keep my sense of humor sharp and ready!
The Secret Of Success
Success is a buzz word that is thrown around with the intention to inspire and motivate others. Let me tell you what, though. If I did not start my day by successfully getting in the shower like I needed to, or
For me not knowing that I needed to be kicking fear's behind daily has kept me from success, because I lived believing lies. I lived reflecting back from my eyes into the eyes of others their lying thoughts about me, their perspective of who I am because of the adversity that I have endured, and the expectations that our western culture has for what it calls success. I was defeated every day before I got out of bed. I was defeated in my sleep, in my dreams! I was defeated before anyone looked at me because I was what I saw in the mirror and I did not believe in me, after all, why should I? No one else does. WRONG! That is a lie! Maybe I did not feel that anyone believed in me, and maybe I don't hear it enough because of how strong my personality is, but others do believe in me. My son, who's counting on me only felt like I was being burdened with a yoke that I could never bear and the farce was that I did, he believes in me. The most powerful thing that my son has said to me (even though it was regarding providing him with some small favor initially) has been, "Oh, thank you mommy! I knew that you wouldn't let me down!" How humbling that is to hear when I put it into the context that my son believes that I will always come through and succeed for him! Wow. Just simply wow. There is a universal law, that all a person needs to succeed is 1 person to believe in them, just 1.
Well, I may not know who another person is, or what their battle is, but I can tell you right now that I understand having a battle that seems to never end and let me tell you that I believe in the human spirit and that I believe in your spirit and your ability to overcome whatever you are dealing with! Why do I believe that you have the ability to overcome what you are dealing with? Because not only have I overcome, but many people have, many leaders that you would not think came from adverse backgrounds and faced insane odds to be successful in achieving amazing things; Albert Einstein, Celine Dion, George Washington Carver, Winston Churchill and many others. Your circumstances do not define who you are!
Remember that what you allow is what will continue.