Friday, September 2, 2011

Where Amy Veers A Little Off the Norm...

I've been talking to a counselor for the past two weeks.  There, I said it -- I'm seeking "professional help".  I've always been a believer in 'talking it out' even though, until now, I've never done so myself.  At first when I started this early last week, I was a bit skeptical.  How in the hell would an unbiased person be able to give me the skills to get through this hellishness?  I'm seeing the light, folks.  While I'm no where near "cured" -- I mean, really, it's been only over a month since John's death -- I do feel like I'm doing something positive and not sitting around home, feeling sorry for myself and Micah, getting shitfaced to block out the pain, and overdosing on cookies and whatever comfort food is at hand.  Before setting up these sessions, I talked to a couple of friends who have seen counselors for various reasons, and for the most part they seriously advocate the importance of it.  The reasons I've heard are mainly that it gives you a "safe place" to talk about what's going on with you and to vent to a person who wasn't or isn't directly involved in whatever personal tragedy you're experiencing now.  My hesitation was that I don't generally like talking about myself a whole lot ( 'it's all about me', holla!), and I abhor crying in front of strangers, let alone close friends and family.  To me, crying is a weakness that I have a hard time showing -- so I tend to do it behind closed doors.  Plus, I usually get a massive headache afterwards, my eyes get all swollen, red, and squinty, and my sinuses sound like I'm trying to breath through swamp muck.  So far, I've burned through 1 1/2 boxes of Kleenex in her office and that's in just 2 sessions.

Today's session really had me talking in a vein that I didn't picture.  Sure, these thoughts have been in my head and I've gnashed my teeth about them once or twice...but I never imagined sharing them with the counselor.  First, if one more person asks how I'm doing -- I may wind up on the 6 o'clock news.  Seriously.  C'mon, people (not bloglandia people, but immediate people I deal with at work and at the store, etc)!  My husband, the love of my life, just died.  How the EFF do you think I'm feeling???  Peachy keen?  Fan-effin'-tabulous?  Seriously, it's a dumb question, but one that I know is heartfelt or, for lack of better words, is filler for those people who don't know what else to say.

The other thing that's getting my goat is -- the Bible thumpers.  Now I am a Christian and I do believe and love God.  But right now I'm pretty pissed off at him.  I tend to couch it in a "I'm not speaking to Him right now" kinda comparison.  Down here in the Bible Belt, there's the Blue Law, BBQ, country music, sweet tea, and church on any given day of the week.  So yeah, God is a big thing down here, and people here feel it's their duty to express to me that John had a higher calling and there was some reason why God felt it necessary for him to go on and seek greener pastures, as it were, or that "he's in a much better place now".  Well, I'm sorry -- I'm not good with that.  I am not thrilled that John died at the young age of 46 years old, less than a year after we had gotten married, and we never got to go to England like we'd always dreamt about, or that I won't be able to grow old with him.  All of that was taken from me.  I won't go off any further about this in this post because I've been thinking about it this evening, and accept that my friends and co-workers mean well with all of this.  Maybe it makes them feel like they're doing something by wanting to have prayer with me, or expound on God's plan for us all.  But when I tell them that I'm pissed off at Him right now, they act as if I've slapped their child.  How dare I?!

But in talking with another friend/co-worker and my mom tonight -- I found out that I'm actually normal; it's ok to get pissed off.  How scary is that?  As a kid, I used to be petrified of the idea of getting mad at God because, uh yeah, he could get mad right back at me and that might not be so pretty.  And what's weird is that when I read that the anger stage of grief is one of the processes, I felt like it meant that I would be angry with John for up and dying on me.  I never knew that the anger would extend to those who are doing nothing more than wanting to see me get better.  People want to help, and sometimes this is the only way they can.

SO...having said all that.  The point of this post, if I ever had one, was...damn, I'm glad I'm on medication right now.                 


Wendy said...

I'm always one of those people who never knows what to say. I mean, I want to say something - but I know no matter what it is, it's going to sound trite, simplistic, and in no way will have the power to make everything magically "better" for the person I wish to comfort. People mean well, but seriously - sometimes we're dumb cows.

The God thing - I know exactly what you mean. One of the teachers at my high school lost his teenage daughter in a car accident. The funeral was at our church and everybody kept telling this man how his daughter was in a "better place." Yeah, gee - that's grand, but I'm sure he'd be just a wee bit happier if his daughter was ALIVE AND AT HOME WITH HER FAMILY! Gah.

But yeah, anywho....I'm glad the counselor is helping. Sometimes it is just, I don't know easier?, to let it all hang out with a stranger. Someone you don't have baggage with. Someone you can be totally honest with without that concern of "hurting their feelings" or what not. So I say, keep it up!

nath said...

I think it's hard for everyone in this kind of situation... I'm sure everyone knows you're not feeling a 100% and definitively not peachy... but what do we say? So we offer platitudes and ask you how you're feeling. Perhaps they're waiting for you to really tell how you're feeling.

In any case, I'm glad you've seek professional help and I hope it will really help.

Amy said...

I'm not sure what caused me to go off like that last night. And I didn't mean any offense by it, but it was in my brain -- so it poured out through my fingers even after kavetching about it to my counselor yesterday.

Honestly, when people ask me how I'm doing, my typical reply is, 'eh, good days and bad', because that's what it truly is. I measure a good day by if if I cried that day or not. So today was actually...a good day.

nath said...

Seriously, Amy. This is your blog, this is where you can express yourself. If that's how you felt, go ahead and let us know :) We're not going to take offense at all!!

CindyS said...

Absolutely no offense taken. Saying how you are feeling to those closest to you is very important (your mom and friends)and getting to release it in person and on your blog hopefully eases the pain even if only for a moment.

I'm awkward also, never knowing what to say and sometimes hope silence is okay. 46 is too young, hell anything under 70 to me is way too young and if there is anyone who can handle crazy angry grief I'm hoping it's God cause he's gotten a few earfuls from me and that's been for minor things.

CindyS (thinking of you often)

Holly said...

You don't ever need to apologize Amy. As Nath said, this is your blog. You can say whatever the hell you like. And I hope you continue to open up.

I think seeing the counselor is great. Sometimes a 3rd party to talk to makes all the difference in the world..and sometimes it doesn't help for jack. But it can't hurt to try, right?

PS. my word verif is anikin. So, maybe this is the universes way of saying..May The Force Be With You?