I woke to sadness today. I had fallen asleep with discomfort, spent the night tossing from one nightmare to another, and when I finally gave in to the daylight, I was on the wrong side of my limbic brain and unable to find the path back.
That is what this chakra journey is for me. It is a way to get past these days when nothing feels good. When I won't eat because I wish my body would wither because I hate it and what it makes me feel. I start thinking thoughts about how I am to blame for any and all of my loved ones’ sorrows. It is thinking that is not based in reality, but rather in a broken and fried neurological circuit. Knowing the pathophysiology of it does not fix it.
There were too many people as I grew up who reinforced all of my fears and anxieties, and not enough kinder, gentler adults who knew that being different is just different, not bad. Working with Chakra One has been a reminder that my foundation is rocky. It is nibbled at the corners by rats. I keep trying to shore it up, but some days I am too tired or hurt to make it better.
The news today seemed to reinforce my rain-clouded glasses. The suicide of a young man, brilliant...different, the death of someone's beautiful dog, a friend crying over her father's death, Haiti's earthquake anniversary, and so on. To add on, I started my disability paperwork, an admission of how little I feel I am worth without a career. I no longer have that armor to fight off the feelings of inadequacy fed by the remembered voices in my head of adults telling me I was stupid, telling me that I would never amount to anything, and sneering at me.
I spent my afternoon sobbing out my story to my sweet husband, my head in his lap as he rubbed my back and listened patiently. He has heard it before. We go through a version of this about once every four months. (He is a patient and kind person.) He reassured me that my sadness is not based in reality. He reminded me that I am valuable. He told me that other people are separate from my Self and that I am only responsible for me, not them.
I have done therapy, I have taken medications, I have done yoga, and mediation, and prayer, and supplements, and all of it. All. Of. It. The problem is that when you are the child of an alcoholic, a survivor of sexual abuse, and a child who was (is) probably on the spectrum before we knew that there was such a thing, you get torn down. You are little and powerless, and your brain remembers all of it. Adults forget this...or maybe they don't have the time or energy to care. I don't know. I just know that no matter how much work I do on these problems, they never go away entirely. They are just a sucking wound that I try very hard to ignore.
That's the problem with Chakra One. You can't really ignore it. It is the cornerstone of the rest of the architecture. It is the root. I am so grateful that Dan and I found each other. He is my temporary root while I try and plant furiously to make it secure. I am grateful that I have a safe place to be. I am grateful that I have love and laughter most of my days. How ridiculous it seems to expect it every day, and yet we do, and when that isn’t the case the fear grows and becomes scary.
I know many people that read this blog will think this is oversharing or being dramatic. I realize that I don't have Major Depressive Disorder, and despite my traumas, my life is full of good things. I also know that silence feeds depression the way oxygen feeds flame. I don't think a scale of my life vs your life vs good things vs bad things helps. I think that kind of judgment is a large reason we as a society take copious amounts of antidepressants while pretending we are all fine. The more of us that step forward into the light, the fewer of us will succumb to the darkness. This is my torch. I hope it can light a path for someone in need.
Suicide Hotline 1-800-273-TALK(8255)
I did not draw an elephant today. I might sculpt one out of ice cream later. I am feeling better, now.