After the Storms

We awoke to an odd sight this morning– sun.  It’s been a while.  In fact, the last time it was actually sunny was a week ago.  We had days of rain in London, too, but not usually with this kind of storms.  I’d never been in a flood til now.

I’m staying with a friend for now until our house become inhabitable again.  We went to check out things this morning.  There’s rather alot of flood damage, and the waters are still rising due to run-off.  It’s odd that, even though it has stopped raining, the waters are still rising.  The neighbour has a tree on his roof now, which is not likely the decor he was planning.  The strongest winds were south of us, but combine 60 mph winds with saturated and flooded ground, and some of the trees refuse to remain standing.  In another odd twist of events, many of the trees in our area that were already damaged from the ice storm of 2009 decided they’d had enough of this and tumbled over.

Lily lost her Pooh bears, which has been very hard for her.  The wind is still howling, which is frightening Little Peoples and Middle Littles alike.  I just keep reminding them that, even though the ground is still saturated and the wind is still blowing, there is nothing at all on the radar around us.  Nothing.  It’s clear.  Mairead, ever the optimist, keeps reminding *me* that severe storms are forecast for Sunday.

The internal cast really have been interesting with all of this going on.  Little Peoples were inconsolable through most of it.  When the worst of the storms started last week, they cried and cried.  My best friend and I were out during one of the downpours, and Lily squeezed my fists shut so tightly that she actually broke the skin with one of my thumbnails.  Kathy did her best to keep the little ones calm, but nothing worked.

The Middle Littles, a group of young teens and preteens, were terrified by the cult prophecy stuff.  Everyone is still upset by that, actually.  Now that we’re not in immediate danger, I have time to worry about prophecies and future storms.  As my best friend would say, I *have* to worry about something.  I’m good at it.

Oddly, I’m greatly concerned for Mairead.  She’s usually unflappable, but I have a feeling this upset her more than she’s letting on.  I heard her crying this morning, which almost never happens.  The flood waters coming in to the house really scared all of us, but I think it scared her most.  No idea why.  She might tell me at some time, but she might just keep it to herself.  I just hope she’s well.

Once the waters recede, we’ll start repairing what we can.  New furniture, new flooring, et c.  Maybe Mother Nature is some sort of twisted interior designer these days.  Until then, I’m staying with a friend and her 21 cats.  Interesting, but it’s a safe place and I am grateful.

Life is the good thing.  We’re all alive.

Changes

I seem to have found myself a bit pregnant.  Now, for the those of you who are still breathing or have regained consciousness, let me explain that little experience.  Mairead had been having an on-again off-again relationship with someone.  At first, I knew about the relationship and was OK with it.  Yes, the relationship was sexual in nature, but both parties knew nothing long term was going to come of it, and both parties were being careful.  Please don’t berate my decision-making.  Every system is different.  Anyway, I asked specifically that Mairead call the relationship off entirely, and I personally participated in that ending.  A couple of weeks ago, though, someone noticed I was nauseous every morning and asked, as a joke, if I was pregnant.  I started to say no, but Mairead popped up with an ‘I don’t know.’  My classmates must have been quite concerned that the colour would never return to my face.

That weekend, I showed up at my best friend’s flat with a home pregnancy test in hand.  After waiting the five minutes that seemed like five years, we checked the test.  It was negative.  A week of nausea and the realisation that my period was very late passed, and I purchased two more pregnancy tests.  My best friend is male, and I’m guessing he hadn’t timed many pregnancy tests before that day.  The five minute eternity passed again, and two pink lines glared back at us from the test.  I was in a bit of a shock, so I waited a few minutes, ripped open the next package, and went to try that little test again.  Five minutes later, two more pink lines popped by.  At this point, my best friend made the astute observation that, ‘Girlfriend, you might be pregnant.’  Two positive home tests and the sound of the baby’s heart beat at my Friday morning appointment with the obstetrician can’t be wrong.  In June, an outside little person will become part of my life.  There’s much more to say, both in terms of my inside folks and their reactions, as well as in terms of the reaction of my best friend’s mother and brother, but I’ll save that for a future post, as I am currently falling asleep at the keyboard.

A dear friend once told me that different isn’t always bad.  It’s just different.  This difference is just another spot to incorporate into life and move forward.  I’m actually looking forward to meeting this child.  He or she has only existed for 11 weeks, but there are already so many loving people waiting to welcome this child into the world.

Different isn’t always bad.  Just different.

Messiness

I got a text message from my best friend tonight.  This is not unusual, of course.  What *is* unusual, though, is my missing a text from him.  This did not go over well with Lily.  Or with me, really.  I guess it’s an abandonment/major losses thing– whenever I miss the small things that happen in mine and my best friend’s friendship, I panic.  It’s the small things that make a difference.  He and I have shared some absolutely amazing adventures.  We’ve travelled a bit, tried unusual foods (see: Bertie Bott’s vomit beans 🙂 ) and done some local touring that turned out really well.  We’ve also spent cold, rainy nights watching bad DVD’s, lazy afternoons just hanging about, and warm summer evenings walking beside the Riverfront.  Those little moments make all the difference.  So when I miss a tiny little text message that was just a small joke from a movie we watched last night, I panic.

Lily, who was supposed to be in bed, popped up to absolutely yell at me about not having the phone near so that her M Body Person could talk to her.  That woke Timmy who began to cry because Lily was crying.  And that attracted the attention of Mairead, who has taken over as internal caretaker of the children since the former internal caretaker became what Mairead refers to as a CAB– Crazy Ass B*tch.  Ah, love among the alters.  Just as things started to get absolutely maddening, my phone buzzed.  My best friend texted, completely unexpectedly since it’s a bit late, and all was calm.  Immediately.  With one text message, my best friend was able to calm the entire internal core group.

And I am terrified.

I’ve never trusted someone so deeply in my life, nor have I ever let anyone get this close.  Now we’re at the ultimate in trust– I recognise that my best friend could absolutely crush me in just a few words.  I’ve lost so many people, either to death or otherwise, and losing my best friend would be my complete downfall.  I couldn’t withstand that.  For someone as wonderful as him, though, it’s worth the risk.

—————————-

Our lives are made in these small hours

These little wonders, these twists and turns of fate

Time falls away but these small hours

These small hours still remain

— Rob Thomas, ‘Little Wonders’

Little Messages

The child alters among my internal folk are divided into three main groups– Little Littles, Littles, and Middle Littles.  The smallest of all are, appropriately, Little Littles.  They are very new discoveries, and the oldest is two at best.  They’re structured a bit strangely, and they don’t communicate often.  Littles and Middle Littles, however, *do* communicate often, both inside and to my best friend on the outside.

Today Littles and Middle Littles were working on something.  Mairead was helping.  For all of her attitude and general teenage rebellion, she is *excellent* with the kids.  Kathy and I are both thankful for that.

Mairead announced to me that Littles and Middle Littles had something to say to my best friend.  Willow, one of the Middle Littles, acted as spokesperson for their little group and sent my best friend this text message:

We, Lily Timmy Lucy and Willow, want to say the you are the best outside person we know.  You love us and don’t hurt us and you tell us about outside stuff.  That is why we want to tell you that you are our best friend too!  We love you!  🙂

I am so proud of them for saying all of that.  It’s a leap of faith on their part to trust someone that much, and it’s further tribute to how wonderful my best friend is that they were able to trust him.  Things just work out so perfectly sometimes.

Just Another Tuesday Afternoon

I ‘went away’ for a bit to chat with Kathy, an internal helper, and apparently the kids went a bit mad.  Mairead, in all her greatness, was watching them, but they managed to get away with my mobile phone and text my best friend.  They were *very* proud of having outsmarted the ‘big peoples’ and were quick to let my best friend know.  🙂  Bless him, he does know how to work with the little ones.  When I came back from our internal tea time, Mairead growled out ‘Would you just *look* at your phone’ and I got the spectator’s version of a hilarious little conversation.

Now here sits the lot of us– Kathy and me trying not to laugh hysterically lest we insult someone, two very happy children who were only mildly scolded, and a disgruntled Scottish teen who is sulking because *kids* got the better of her.  🙂

Yes, folks, it’s just another Tuesday afternoon.

Working in a Different Age

I’m in my late twenties, but most of the time I still feel stuck in my teenage years.  My twenties have definitely been tumultuous.  Maybe that’s what I’m feeling.  Maybe it’s like my twenties are on pause.  I’d really hate to stay a decade behind from here on out, though.

During the last therapy session, my therapist mentioned something about the little girl part of my mind being stuck in a certain flashback and re-experiencing that moment all over again.  I had a *tremendously* difficult time keeping Lily from popping up to say hello– I’m still not certain of the therapist’s beliefs on DID and would like to avoid being hospitalised any time soon.  In any event, that child part of me is certainly active.  Sometimes I think *she* is the one with bipolar disorder.  She seems to function only at extremes.  My best friend and I dearly love her, though, and I think we’d miss her if she was gone.

The teenage alters tend to be a bit different.  I’m only aware of three, and Mairead’s job is simply to be a teenager.  She’s only vaguely affected by either the general or the SRA abuse and always tells us that sh*t doesn’t belong to her.  The other two teens were formed during my roughly three years of leadership programming (ages 13-15) and hold memories of genuine torture.  My next thought was to say I can’t imagine going through something like that.  I guess even though I’m aware of most of the memories, I still keep them at a distance.  The details of these memories are not my concern here, though.  I’m only concerned with effects.

The alters who took the SRA leadership programming are called Awen and Patrick.  They’re twins, but they seem like one being at times. Awen speaks only Irish, and Patrick hears only her voice.  I hear her whispering from time to time, and it is absolutely chilling.  On rare occasions, when the flashbacks from that time period are very vivid, I hear her screaming, chanting ‘Something’s wrong.  I’m afraid’ like a mantra.  Elizabeth, the leader of the cult-loyal system, drags Awen to a lake every night.  I have no idea what goes on there, but I’m sure the memory will be just lovely.  Lakes have always bothered me.

I think the combination of my teenage alters shows exactly why I feel stuck in those years– Mairead is the moody happiness of a regular teen; Awen and Patrick are the shadowed existence of a teen going through SRA.  Mairead lives only in the present; Awen and Patrick live only in the past.  I think I need to learn how to be a ‘normal’ teenager through Mairead’s example while processing the events from those years that are mirrored through Awen and Patrick.  Maybe then I can work through that developmental phase, for lack of better terms, and feel like an adult for once.

Until Lily pops out, of course.  🙂

Positive Changes

Saturday I made up my mind to at least *pretend* to be happy.  As is frequently the case, the pretence eventually became an actual feeling.  No, it wasn’t pure and cloudless happiness.  It was much better than anything else I’ve felt lately, though, and it stuck around through Sunday.  I know it’s not the end of the storm, but at least the rain has stopped for now.

Starting the new blog has already been helpful.  It lends a time and place for grief, and that has somehow helped me feel a bit less confined.  It’s also a great outlet.

I’ve also made some changes to improve my physical health.  After checking with my neurologist due to a tricky little condition I have, I returned to my vegetarian semi-roots.  For several years before moving to America, I had been vegetarian.  For whatever reason, I started eating meat again soon after coming here.  For me, the decision doesn’t involve a sense of morality, and I certainly don’t have a problem with other people eating meat.  It’s a personal choice.  I simply feel better physically when I eliminate meat from my diet.  Mairead, who had taken to asking me if I was enjoying cooked flesh, is happy as well.  Alters.  🙂

Here’s a link for information on vegetarian diets.  As with any major changes to your physical lifestyle, it’s best to ask a doctor first.

And finally, I’ve managed to start organising things a bit better.  Since I’m thinking a bit clearer these days, I’ve been able to put my bills in order just slightly.  There still isn’t enough money for me to *pay* every bill every month, but at least I know what I’m facing.  Perhaps the never-ending job search, which is also much more focused these days, will end in decent employment soon.  Working from odd job to odd job gets old after a very short while.

On Thursday, we meet the new therapist for the very first time.  I’m really trying to stay active and positive this week.  Hopefully, that will transfer straight on to the therapy session as well.

Here’s to positive changes.