Good Days & Hard Days

Recently I’ve had more Good days than Hard days, more energy and less bad feelings. This morning was the first time in a few weeks that I woke up in a panicked state. I had a nightmare about my son that I won’t go into detail about (it was horrific). I did some deep breathing exercises and after about 25 minutes or so I felt much better. My therapist gave me a book about PTSD and how to ground yourself, I haven’t started reading it yet because I’ve made so much progress over the last few months. It’s something I should probably do though, maybe over Christmas vacation.

I’ve been reflecting on a few different areas of my life this year, the main focus  obviously being my health. So far I’ve lost a 110 lbs from my highest weight of 250 in 2013 and 94 lbs since February 24 of this year. I’m currently siting at 140 lbs and a size 7 pants. I just tried a size 7 on yesterday because I noticed my 9’s fitting looser in the waist. And they fit! The last time I was this small I was six months pregnant with my son. Several people have asked me if I’m happy now, but this journey has never been just about my physical appearance, it’s very mental and this process is not a liner one. In my mind there is no definitive answer to that question because I will always want to improve myself in one way or another. I am, in essence a very flawed person, that is the intrinsic nature of humanity.

I have Good days where I look in the mirror and my brain lets me see how much progress I’ve made. On those days I feel beautiful and proud of my accomplishments. On the Hard days, I’m bombarded with the “fat girl” mentality I had for so long. On those days my brain will yell at me and say things like;

“Your still a pig. Look at that disgusting loose skin. You have so many stretch marks! You’ll never be enough. Your unintelligent and you’ll never be smart, blah, blah, blah…”

To over come those thoughts and feelings I will make a list of all the positves that have come from my hard work and determination and I will also look back through pictures so that I visualize how far I’ve come. Here is a list of the positives I’ve come up with.

  • I went from a size 20 pants to a size 7.
  • I can tie my shoes without struggling.
  • I no longer have high blood pressure.
  • My sleep apnia is gone.
  • I can breath when I run up and down the stairs.
  • I can run up and down the stairs!
  • My husband and I both fit comfortably in the bath and shower together.
  • I can wrap a towel completely around my body.
  • My husband can pick me up and carry me.
  • I don’t snore any longer.
  • I can sleep on my back now.
  • sex is much more intimate and fun ❤

My Journey So Far

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Self Portraits: Anxiety and Depersonalization.

I’ve been working on a visual expression series of what its like when I experience anxiety, panic and depersonalization. I wanted these to be as accurate as possible so I took them while I was having an episode. Some of the pictures contain nudity so enter with caution.

With that being said….

This work is mine and mine alone, it is not to be copied or reproduced in any way shape or form . It is ment to be viewed as art work, Not as content for your spank bank. Be respectful.
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Provisional blog post

Sometimes, the thing that might seem absurd to an outside perceiver of a situation is the right thing for the person going through the issue.

I was talking about this with my therapist last week, in regards to an internal struggle I’m having. I had this close friend who hurt me deeply and our friendship stopped abruptly. It was revealed to me that she and my husband were having an inappropriate relationship and I freaked out (I lost my shit for a good year and a half). I said and did some things that were out of my normal character and most people tell me that I was justified in my actions, but that’s not the type of person that I ever wanted to be. I regret the mean things I said and did. Since then my husband and I have both worked extremely hard to repair the damage that was done to our marriage and the issues that lead him to pursue the affair in the first place. It’s been a very long and sometimes dark road but so far we have become stronger and more connected. One of the biggest things is COMMUNICATION and being open to listening to what one another has to say without judgment.

He knows that what he did to both of us was wrong; the manipulation, the lies, everything. We’ve talked about it many times. As far as the pain he’s caused me, I am for the most part over it. And I say for the most part because scaring is inevitable, but it’s how you choose to heal that determines the outcome of your future wellbeing. I choose to rise above and grow from it. I trust him and I forgive him. My therapist is always telling me that I’m a strong person because of the way that I love and forgive. I tell her that it’s just the way that I believe love should be.

The part that I still struggle with is the loss of my friend and the things she said and believed about me during and after the affair. I don’t think about it nearly as much as I used to but why do I think about it at all? Why do I still reminisce and wish things could have been different? I believe there are several reasons for this. She believed that I was talking badly about her while we were still close friends and that never happened. Regardless of our current friendship status, It’s important to me that she knows that none of what was fed to her was true. I excepted her regardless of the things she told me about her past. I never saw anything bad in her (except that she could be quite bitchy sometimes) because she was my friend and I loved her.

I never once only blamed her for what happened but I did hold her accountable for her part. This was not a normal affair, she wasn’t some unsuspecting women who didn’t know my husband was married. She was a friend to both of us and she knew how I felt about my marriage because we had talked about it, even while the affair was happening. I wish it could have been someone who I didn’t know, It would have been less painful. I am not a toxic person and our friendship was not toxic. If the affair never happened, I believe we would still be friends today. It seemed like she used that as a scapegoat. Maybe because It made her feel justified in what she did? I don’t know. I did not try to friend request her mother after her death, that request was sent while she was still alive. And despite how angry I was at her, I would never want her dead.

So many times I have wanted to talk to her, to sort through some of the bullshit but I didn’t feel safe. My therapist thinks that I should talk to her but only if I’m ready to hear what she has to say, good or bad. It’s important that I don’t go into it with any expectations of  sincere remorse or an apology because in the past she’s been incapable of apologizing without putting the word “but” after it. She always turns it around to somehow be my fault or to point out why our friendship wouldn’t have worked out anyway. It sucks. I do forgive her and I want her to forgive herself. I want nothing but good things for her in her life.

It’s been a very long time since I’ve written about any of this but it’s been on my mind lately and I just needed to write it out.

Goodnight, Mandy

Health + Mental Health

Today was decent enough, I only had a little bit of anxiety and I only took one nap. The last three or so months I have been pretty reclusive because I’ve been plagued with extreme fatigue, anxiety, panic attacks and dizziness. It started to get to the point of “I dont know if I can handle this anymore”. It got pretty dark. I started seeing a new therapist and my psychiatrist more regularly, in hopes of some relief. It has helped a bit. I’ve learned some grounding techniques to help me when I disassociate from the anxiety. That is one of the scarier symptoms that my therapist helped me to understand. I have had anxiety and panic attacks since I was 13 but my physical and mental symptoms have changed over time. If you don’t know what disassociation is, look it up. For me, It feels like I’m stuck in a dream state. My surroundings become surreal and I feel very detached from my body. It fucking sucks.

My therapist explanation is that all of my anxiety, OCD, panic attacks and disassociation issues stem from PTSD. I view the world around me as unsafe and threatening constantly  because of traumas that I endured as a child and an adult. I’m in a constant sate of hypervigilance and it causes me to freak out if I don’t feel that I have control over my situation.  I use to tell myself that other people had it way worse than I did. I think because, it allowed me to escape from having to truly face what I went through. For a long time I thought my childhood was “normal” when it was anything but. Someday, maybe soon, I’ll write it all out and share it.

I was recently diagnosed with PCOS (Polycystic ovarian syndrome). I went in for a routine PAP and to talk to my Gyno about some pain I was having in my ovaries. She decided to send me for some further testing and boom, I have PCOS. It was quite a shock to me and I’ve had some depression over it. Thankfully I don’t have the traditional symptoms. Health issues associated with PCOS are; being at high risk for certain cancers, type II diabetes, cardiovascular disease, infertility, depression, anxiety, sleep disorders and eating disorders. And that’s an incomplete list. PCOS is also a common reason for weight gain so my doctor didn’t seem shocked when I told her that I used to weigh 250 LBS. I started taking birth control (I hate it) to help get my hormones back to normal. At first I refused it and I got yelled at by my doctor. She said” You are putting yourself at great risk for cancer if you don’t take the birth control” and then she proceeded to hand write a list of all the issues it would help me with. So I’m like, fine! I’ll fucking take it but I’m not happy about it. She did warn me that it would make me feel shitty for the first month, due to my hormones being so out of balance. So far, I’ve had nausea and no appetite and that’s no bueno when I already hardly eat.

All of that seems like a whole lot of bad but I do feel like I’m starting to come out of it. I’m hopeful that as the weeks creep closer to the end of the year I’ll start to feel even better. I have big plans for next year that will be revealed in later posts. I’m super tired so I’m done for tonight. Sweet dreams my loves.

-Mandy