Saturday, December 29, 2012

Fighting Bitterness

As I began to look back on 2012 and what I've achieved, I have to admit, it's been a pretty phenomenal year. But suddenly, I was thrown into cognitive dissonance. It's been an amazing year!! So why don't I feel amazing? I struggled for weeks wondering why. I realized that I'm full of bitterness. Full-to-the-brim angst that would put the Grinch and pre-reformed Scrooge to shame. I had to ask myself, what gives? It's all been progress. Why am I still miserable?

It took a while, but when an old friend contacted me, it all came rushing back. Yes, this life is VERY successful, given what I have to deal with. But it's a second-hand life. It's not my primary life. I had that life. I was amazingly happy before this all came crashing to a head, changing my world forever. I had to leave the one place I called home, because the climate there was triggering epic levels of pain, both for my migraines and my neuropathy. That, and all but two pain clinics were pressured to go out of business, and the last to were being pressured to not use narcotics at all. And I need narcotics. My home cast me out. It broke my heart. I still haven't recovered from that.

When I visited Seattle to hook up with my old doctor to see if she could help, it was like all this tension just melted from me. I was relaxed. I was joyful. My spirit was uplifted. Until, of course, towards the end of the trip when the pain started to seep in again. Then it broke my heart all over again. I love everything about Seattle, including the ever-present rain and the terrible traffic. There is a celebration of the individual in Seattle that makes it so no one has the right to judge. To each their own! And glory to it. That was home. I wanna go home. And I can never go home.

I've found where I need to be, and I need to find a way I can make peace with it. However, it seems the more I learn about the character of my new home, the more I don't like it. I've met a few spectacular people, but on the whole, I am not a fan. I'm sure that to several thousands of people, this place is their home. Just not me. And I struggle to fit in, in a place I don't wanna be. Do you think Adam & Eve were able to get over getting kicked out of the garden of Eden? Because it feels like I was kicked out of paradise.

I loved my life. LOVED it. It wasn't perfect, but it was wonderful, and filled with wonder. Ten years later, it's as if I'm waking from a crazy nightmare, only to find that everything that was familiar and comfortable is gone. I can't dance. I can't even be around the music to dance. I can't paint. I still have the skill, and my ability has even improved, but I can't hold a paintbrush long enough---my hands, they betray me. My body betrays me. It has taken what gave me joy and perverted it into an exercise of torture. I can't even get too interested or excited about a subject, lest I blow a migraine. I feel like a butterfly in a bell-jar, beating my wings against an invisible force-field, unable to fly.

I knew what made me happy. Now I can't do any of that. And I can't figure out what to do in its stead! I wouldn't feel so robbed, if I could replace it with something else. That, however, is easier said than done. I spend 30 years figuring out myself and what I wanted. Now, most of that information is pretty useless, if not downright hazardous. I have to come up with an entirely new list of things to make me happy, and I don't even have a clue where to start! Thinking about it sure doesn't help, because all it turns into is rumination on those things lost to me.

Certainly, I don't want to live mired in bitterness, unable to enjoy the success of 2012, but I don't know how to fix this!! Halp!


  1. "...a second hand life ..." Wow. That punched me in the gut. Yes, I have created a meaningful life, one which includes joy, even. But, it is not the life I would have chosen nor the one I would choose for me now. But, it is the life I have. I just wish, after all these years, I could stop grieving.

    1. I know the grief you're talking about. Stay tuned for today's post. It may help...