He Helps Those Who Help Themselves

How do you learn to live by yourself if you’ve gotten to age 34 without doing so? I mean, I tried for the first time in Tokyo, but that went horribly and I scrambled like a frightened animal to not be alone in that apartment… keeping busy doesn’t help, because I don’t have the energy to stay in perpetual motion right now.

I cry daily.

My new therapist has me coming in fairly often so she can keep an eye on me.

I went to the maul yesterday, for some LUSH body cream (my skin is a mass of rashes and hives from stress), and as I stood in the brightly lit maul, in the Sephora, with its flashing lights and screaming noises, without the slightest urge to buy anything, I thought “I want to die.”

I thought this in a purely academic way. I didn’t mean it; death is a horrifying concept to me, THE most horrifying concept. When the topic comes up in my mind, in conversation, or in the media, I picture my littlest dog Mei clinging hysterically to a blanket to avoid being picked up at bath time. And I cling hysterically to my daily existence, as miserable as it has been this year.

If I had a family of my own, I wouldn’t be alone. If I had kids, I wouldn’t be alone. These thoughts obsess me.

The “introvert/extrovert” binary has been getting so much attention recently, as if people never used those terms before 2012… and indeed, I am an either an introvert or just massively dysfunctional. I remember at age 12 I cried to my mother over how lonely I was.

She said “Call a friend. Why don’t you call K? Or K? Or M? Or N?”

I couldn’t explain why I didn’t call them.

I’ve been lonely my entire life, it seems. I have a few things that work for me:

-family. Living in the same house as another person
-socializing with enough warning to prepare myself emotionally. I love planned events, but not in loud spaces.

The more stressed I get, the more easily overwhelmed I become. The more I retreat.

In this big house, I pace. I do a little yoga. I write 3 pages a day on paper of rambly thoughts. I catch up on American TV on Netflix (so many shows I’ve heard people talk about, that I’ve never seen). I read a book on divorce. I Line message T, who is missing me as much as I him. I try to meditate. I pace some more. I make tea and forget to drink it. I stare into the back yard. I cry some more. I study more Japanese vocabulary, because there is always more to learn.

I do indeed have PTSD …from the things that happened to me in Japan that I’m not talking about publicly.

I’m wearing a couple of stone bracelets, that T picked out for me in Yokohama’s Chinatown. Supposedly the stones help to protect the wearer’s heart, and to heal her. He bought me a bowl of crystals that the bracelets go in each night, to re-charge:

healing crystals?

I am so blessed in so many ways, right? We all say that to ourselves when things are horrible and hard. I’ve learned that so much of what I thought of as blessings are less important than the connection between me and other people. But because I am me, and so much like my father, I primarily nurtured the connection between me and one other person, made 1 person my whole support system. But now I am confiding in the person who is hurting me the most. I just wrote him:

“I am so lonely.”

He answered: “Then make some friends.”

Ugh, I am having stabbing head pains at random intervals. The last time I suffered from these was the other lowest time in my life. They force me to close my eyes, pause, and look within.


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