I just drowned two Valium in a glass of rum against my better judgement, but we need to sleep tonight. Last night was one of those nights. The tossing, turning, ruminating, shaking kinda nights. One of those nights where you think too hard about whether calling a crisis line is quieter than committing suicide while you try to sob into your pillow without waking your sleeping husband.
Things have been rough lately. We’ve been struggling with eating disorder feelings again, the familiar thoughts, familiar patterns, intentional triggering. These habits creep back in hard and fast. It’s an addiction and I’m an addict. Recovery isn’t a destination you reach but a never ending journey along the edge of a cliff. Sometimes you fall. Sometimes you want to jump.
I went into that scan expecting it to show a recurrence of the cancer. When they weighed us beforehand I should’ve told them to weigh me backwards and not tell me the number. We don’t keep scales in our house, it’s akin to giving a withdrawing junky a syringe full of heroin to look at but not touch.
But right now, we are not strong. So I said nothing.
When I saw the weight I saw that we had put on 20kg. 20. and then two things happened, firstly every insecurity I’ve ever had about my body came crashing onto me at once, secondly, I completely accepted that I was going to die.
It was self protection. The weight? It didn’t have to matter, the cancer was back and I’d be guaranteed to lose it again soon enough.
Yesterday we got “good” news. Our PET scan was clear, whatever these aches, pains and lumps are is irrelevant because we are still cancer free. I should have been celebrating. I should have been happy. But all I could think about were those numbers on that scale and how I’d just leaped right off that cliff without any harness whatsoever.
I was free falling.
Last night as I lay in bed sobbing because I had no idea how to move forward if I did not find a way to lose this weight. I can’t run anymore at all, I can barely walk more than a kilometre without suffering for days afterwards. My body is battered and broken, my mind is shattered and exhausted. I don’t want to feel like this.
I’ve spent my whole life either planning to, or expecting to die. I’ve never needed long term goals or entertained thoughts of a future because it’s never been relevant. Death gives me purpose, stops me questioning my bad decisions, saves me from leaving my comfort zone to express my own needs and the needs of those who live within me.
By losing my death sentence, I’d lost my guarantee, my little safety blanket of doom and I realised that when it comes down to it, I don’t just not know what I want from the world, I don’t know how to live at all.
Financially we’re beyond fucked. We’ve been relying on making a profit from the sale of mums house to pay off debts but while lots of people have expressed interest in the place, offers are way below what we’d hoped for and it looks like we’ll be lucky id we break even.
The back up plan was my life insurance attached to my superannuation policy which will pay out when I have less than two years to live, but now that I am in remission, that safety net for my family is gone too.
I slept fitfully for around an hour. My dreams filled with a combination of fears and dreads, flashbacks and uncertainties. I awoke, once again with puff the magic dragon whirling round and round in my head. The comfort song for one of my young alters, I’ve heard it a lot lately, there was a bad trigger for her recently and I don’t know how to shelter our past from our present, let alone the other way around and now our whole system is in turmoil.
We desperately need to see M. But Covid restrictions leave us stuck with Telehealth as our only options, zoom doesn’t work for us, not in any real way. We don’t have the privacy. I’m tempted to quit therapy all together. I’m so tired, I feel so drained and at the point where everything seems so hard and utterly hopeless that really I’m not sure there’s much point in even trying anymore.
In a life that isn’t linear, we just need to find a way to move forwards.