You may have noticed that I've been quiet, and Not Mentioning a lot of things, and many of them are still Not To Be Mentioned On The Innernet but the one most troubling to me was that I pretty much lost my everloving mind. I am talking about "paralyzed with anxiety, can't answer a simple yes or no question, afraid to leave the house, hiding under a pile of blankets with the iPod and Belleruth Naparstek huffing lavender oil having taken two Benadryl to take the edge off" kind of crippled by panic, y'all, and I won't lie, I was worried about my mental health.
The MFA Minivan had a coolant system leak several months ago due to a loose hose; the XY said something about it when we were exchanging children at the police station and I was all "your MOM smells like antifreeze" because the temperature gauge was fluctuating appropriately but no the vehicle was overheating AND the in-dash computer needed a re-build and I may have owned a vibrator AND a jar-opener but the minivan made me feel lonely for not knowing the smell of antifreeze.
I used to carry a jug of inexpensive premixed coolant everywhere, even after MFA Mechanic and Son fixed the leak, but stopped when Hotter moved in because I try to rein the crazy in for his sake and be graceful in accepting feedback on what's good planning versus clinical neurosis.
It's a true testament to my marriage that I didn't go at anyone wielding a dipstick like a rapier last Saturday when a chime went off at the exact moment that Hotter said he smelled antifreeze and I pulled over to find that the coolant level was dangerously low. Not because he had convinced me to leave the coolant behind just recently; coincidences happen all the time and correlation and causation are two things I keep separated in my head with a fair degree of success. I am not superstitious or narcissistic enough to think my preparation or lack thereof can affect the outcome. No, I was annoyed with myself, because the minivan overheating is a pretty good example of the way in which many of the things Not To Be Mentioned On The Innernet have been going down: something will happen that I was prepared for at one point in time but stopped being prepared for or wanted to prepare for but didn't because I or someone else whose input I value thought I was being neurotic, and I am unprepared, and it sucks.
What really gets my goat are the things I see coming that are so far-fetched as to make me look both neurotic AND paranoid when I prepare for them anyway but then happen as predicted. I enjoy being right as much as the next person, but these things freak me out because I can't explain them.
The day after the
minivan overheated, I had a familiar Very Bad Feeling. After some hemming and
hawing I decided it was better to say something about it and then have
nothing happen and look insane than to say nothing and have something
happen and feel like a jerk, so I said something. Even now I am kicking
myself, because while I doubt my saying "I feel like you're going to
have a seizure" can make even the most obliging of husbands proceed to
do just that, the observer effect is real and I was NOT following the
scientific method. I maybe should have written the date and "totally
saw this coming" on a slip of paper and tucked it into the vial of
Hotter said "okay" and made sure he knew where the Valium was, and then we proceeded to bicker over my failure to buy an outdoor faucet handle and his taking that personally. I was lying on the bed working on the laptop and he was looking for something he thought had fallen between the bed and the wall hovering kind of half-overtop of me. He made a snide comment about my ADD and I said "well you know how Mr. Therapist says I need to work on being less afraid to express anger normally? HERE GOES!" and told him what I thought of that, and then he busted me in the face.
At least, that's what it seemed like, but actually he had had the seizure I had predicted.
I'm not sure what the take-home message from this is, other than that our family therapist needs to give up on me ever doing much aside from nodding and smiling when I'm truly furious because that fear that my displaying actual discernible anger would result in my (second) husband hitting me? NOW IT WILL NEVER GO AWAY! Well-played, universe.
I am not a believer in psychic phenomena, Hotter
doesn't have any behavioral "tells" that either of us are aware of when
he's getting ready to have a seizure, and things that I can't come up
with a logical explanation for confound me utterly. I don't like this.
It makes my brain hurt and I think it's contributed in part to my
recent loss of equilibrium, although I think that's mostly due to the
fact that my gut telling me to be very afraid for valid reasons and
fears borne of neuroses/past traumas feels EXACTLY THE SAME.
This is complicated by the fact that my gut is often right in ways that might be neurotic for someone else with a very different life from mine, but are good sense if you're MFA Mama and have an elderly vehicle and a medically interesting husband you share a brain with, but I also have some fears that are just, well, fears. Last weekend's anger/seizure clusterf*ck aside, Hotter has never hit a woman, and I know intellectually that he would rather chop off his arm than harm me, but man, what a disaster that was!
I'm having a hard time trying to learn to trust my gut on inexplicable matters that defy all logic but ignore it when it shrieks about ducking and covering in a marital disagreement when based on personal statistics, anyone I am as close to as I am to Hotter (family members and lovers included; basically any adult person I share a roof with) has about a seventy-five percent chance of beating me until I need medical attention. I'm good at logic, but it's no use around here lately, and I suck at trusting myself or anyone else, which seems to be the only way to get through all of this.
Hence my recent quiet and overabundance of angst.
I had my quarterly appointment with my psychiatrist today
(generally this is when he asks me if the Ritalin is still working for
me, I say yes, and he writes for another 90-day fill of that), and I
told him what's been going on (and also the things that are Not To Be
Mentioned On The Innernet). He laughed ruefully and said that I
continue to have the absolute worst luck of anyone he's ever seen and
it's amazing I'm not insane, but that he still doesn't think I'm even
close. He agreed to up the antidepressant I've been taking for years in
case that will help me cope, but deemed my recent issues with anxiety
to be situational and appropriate under the circumstances. Which
doesn't make it any more enjoyable.
Mercury had better get its arse out of retrograde or whatever the crap is going on around here, because April is kicking the MFA Household in our collective junk with steel-toed shoes and I'm ready for a break.
And how are all of YOU?