This morning is a very different morning than I had expected. I find myself sorely regretting allowing myself expectations, at all. I am struggling with this moment right here, when all evidence indicates that this moment right here isn’t a bad one taken in the context of nothing more than this moment.

I made a hash of the lovely morning I expected to be having with my partner. It’s that simple; a handful of insensitive words, poorly timed, and the whole thing goes sideways. Complicated fancy fucking monkeys. I feel frustrated with myself. Disappointed with the situation, and still struggling just to get a grip on the sudden spilling over of needlessly intense emotions into every damned thing. My demons dance happily in my tears; today they won. Now my head aches, and I can’t seem to stop these loathsome tears from falling. I am angry with myself for lacking ‘control’ – as if forcing myself to feel specific emotions, or display them quite correctly based on some set of rules, is the point of this whole mess. (It isn’t.) I am disappointed to have hurt my partner’s feelings – and being a fucking primate, I am admittedly even more disappointed to have blown my chances at having sex today. (We’re really good at it together, and I like it just about more than anything else, and it has become a rare thing for a number of reasons, not the least of which are simply geographical distance and calendar conflicts.) I am filled with regret and sorrow – which is a completely shitty emotional experience.

At least for the moment, I have lost touch with my sense of purpose or of progress. I feel stalled. I feel overwhelmed.

Getting it wrong first thing can be hard to take, but there is still a whole day ahead to work with. Choose.

Getting it wrong first thing can be hard to take, but there is still a whole day ahead to work with. Choose.

…We didn’t even finish our coffees together; the realization launches a flood of new tears, and they cascade down my cheeks, hot, plentiful, and resented. I cry more when I notice that I forgot to ask him to help me put on my locket; my fingers haven’t successfully worked the clasp for two days now, and I ache with a strange subtle hurt every time I notice I am not wearing it.

He didn’t leave me alone like this willingly. I sent him away. I write those words through even more tears. What the fuck is wrong with me? I don’t feel any sense of the progress made over time. I seem unable to connect with how good I have felt lately, or how well-loved. I feel cut off from intimacy – and it’s self-inflicted, a byproduct of the combination of my chaos and damage, and an injury so old I don’t understand why am still dealing with it now.  I am child-like with my misery, weeping unreservedly until I’m all cried out.

Sometimes it's hard to focus on the distant horizon when the shadows and silhouettes of the chaos and damage seem so near.

Sometimes it’s hard to focus on the distant horizon when the shadows and silhouettes of the chaos and damage seem so near.

The phone rings. He reaches out to tell me it wasn’t all me, and it’s a message I need to hear. I don’t understand it as a given that when we interact we’re both in it, both involved, both using verbs – and words. We both forget about my injury – and the unfortunate resulting lack of impulse control, and the peculiar communication challenges that are much more significant when I am first waking up. He’s gentle with me over the phone, reassuring, reminding me that love is, and that he loves me; this is a shared journey, as much as any journey can be. I still have this headache. It will pass. I will be okay – I am, in fact, actually okay in this moment right here. I make a point of expressing appreciation that I am able to [emotionally] safely and comfortably ask him to go when I need to take care of me – that’s not something everyone has in their relationships. I still feel like a dick for being insensitive and hurting his feelings; it is irrelevant to feeling hurt whether that hurt was delivered willfully or cluelessly. Hurting hurts.

So. Here I am, alone, and mostly feeling pretty crappy with an entire autumn weekend stretching before me, nothing on my calendar, no plans, nothing that much gets my attention to do with my time; this is not a weekend to be running away from me with entertaining distractions. I’ve logged off of Facebook. Logged off of my social media accounts. No announcement or vaguebooking statement required; I am just taking some time for quiet and stillness. There are very few things that help with this particular shit storm of emotional disregulation; meditation is the most powerful tool in my arsenal, alongside cannabis. My Love arrived before I had time for either, and before my prescription Rx for my pain management, or my thyroid condition had time to be effective. The timing of his visit was itself enough to increase the risk that something would go wrong. We both know a lot about my limitations in that first 90 minutes or so after I wake; we made choices based on how much we miss each other, how much we want each other, and the convenience of opportunity. 😦

I am still working on me.

I am still working on me.

I’m not writing all this down to evoke pity or sympathy – if you find yourself feeling either, I thank you for your good nature, and your concern. I’m okay – well, I feel pretty ick right now, but I will be okay. I am taking the time to share this for two reasons: the most important and first reason is that ‘using my words’ is a perspective-providing tool that tends to most efficiently help me dial down the ferocity of my emotions. I make an effort to be quite clear, and reasonable, and careful to be truthful, accurate, and fair to other people when I write a blog post. When I write in my private journal, I am more prone to spiraling negative self-talk, or skewed perspective that can be punishing, or accusatory – neither is helpful, and both have the potential to build damaging narrative that fuels drama. The second reason to take the time to write about the hard stuff, the bullshit, the hurting, and the chaos is also about perspective; it’s not easy to cope with and rehabilitate a brain injury, and it’s not easy working through the hurting of PTSD.  There are verbs involved. My results vary. Change and growth over time are incremental…and sometimes the increments are fucking small. It can be very discouraging, and I think there is value in being real about the work involved. It won’t always be easy – it may not ever be easy – but there is value in trudging through, practicing the practices, and beginning again when I falter. (You, too.)

I’m fortunate to have such a strong partnership with someone who really does love me supporting me emotionally through all this, and realistically I can’t help but be aware that there is some risk this love won’t survive my struggles; at some point it may really just be too much to ask. That’s part of what hurts so much; there’s no knowing with certainty when that point has been reached, until I get there. Scary.

Begin again.

Begin again.

Today is a good day to take care of this fragile vessel, and to take another step on this journey; the steps add up. Today is a good day to begin again.