Maybe you’ve noticed, (probably you haven’t) I put the lid on my blog in early December, set the heat to low/simmer, and continued through the end of 2013 in mostly silent internet mode. I didn’t tweet, didn’t keep FB abreast of all my feelings, not that I ever really do, and I didn’t blog, comment, or even read much on WP.
Isolating has been a hard habit to break in 2014. It was nice to disconnect with what had begun to feel like a superficial and at times an unsafe online world, and it forced me to reconnect with my life in a real way.
I needed the time away–I might not be done being away just yet.
The holidays were an easy excuse to step back. We left town on December 19th and the family visits didn’t end until January 2. At that point, and while I enjoyed family time immensely, I was at what I can only describe as my introvert breaking point. I needed a week of mostly solitude to recover.
The other reason I pulled away is that in early December, I started going to therapy again.
It was something I had been wanting to do for a long time, specifically to address my issues with shyness and social anxiety. Blogger Interactive helped push me to take this step, and so far it has been a good one.
But it has also been a difficult one.
I’ve been to therapy before, but it was with a series of marriage counselors before my first blessed union went down in a dysfunctional, resentment filled blaze. I continued sessions for a time after my divorce, but eventually stopped because I felt better after losing 200 lbs of man baggage and therapy ain’t cheap, yo! Holy shit it is so expensive. Like, car payment expensive.
There is quite a difference in going to therapy to attempt to salvage a marriage and going in with the intent of repairing the broken parts of yourself without filtering them through the lens of a relationship.
I didn’t have the best experiences in marriage counseling and often felt that I was just sharing a mediated hour of communication with someone who wanted the therapist to hold my arms back while they dick slapped me with my every flaw and failure, which were and continue to be numerous (I’m sure it wasn’t meant to be that, but that’s how it made me feel).
But I decided to give it another chance, and I’ve found someone I like and trust.
Unpacking your issues with a new therapist is an interesting experience, and maybe five sessions in, I finally feel like I’ve provided the Cliffs Notes version of my family dynamic and 35 years of living. I had a humor post planned for this very topic (I might have even made a flow chart), but as I tried to write it while also re-living it, the list of life shit sandwiches didn’t seem very funny.
Interestingly enough, after years of using this blog as an outlet for my feelings, I have felt less of an urge to write publicly about them. I’ve been walking around feeling like I accidentally ripped scabs off every emotional wound I’ve ever experienced and it’s an uncomfortable place for me. It’s a place I haven’t felt compelled to share because I don’t owe anyone complete emotional transparency, as much as it can feel that way when you are trying to put up real and honest content that people connect with in blog-land.
My goal for 2014 is health. That one-word clichéd mantra is my objective for the year, both physically and mentally and I have some work to do.
Some of it I will share here (for example, I’m starting Bikram yoga again this weekend, and I assume I will have some sweaty ass, detox stories to tell) and some of it I will continue to process in offline writing because it isn’t all up for public consumption.
I have missed so many of you profoundly over the last few weeks, and I will continue to read, and comment on what you’re writing.
And I’ll post when I feel like it because I’m back.