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41.



I started writing this entry on my iPad, on Tumblr. I got my iPad on my 36th birthday.

The iPad (much like every other piece of computer equipment currently in my house) is slowing down. The operating systems are so fast, but overwhelm the old computers.

This leaves me struggling to find something that will turn on and I can write.

I need a new computer, but right now? I am a new level of broke. I overdrew my bank account on Thanksgiving; an autopayment that I forgot to cancel. The idea of working outside of my home is terrifying to me.

.     .     .     .     .

When I said months ago that taking care of myself is my current full-time job? I wasn't lying. And, much like my last paying job (i'd hate to say "real" job--this shit is REAL), I feel ill equipped to do it. But I struggle through; count the days where I get out of bed, take a shower, and stay in all day as a victory.

Trying to talk to my therapist is overwhelming. She's a new to me therapist. She also seems to possibly be a new therapist, period. I don't know. I find her really hard to talk to. And I have all of these things to talk about.  She made a comment about how closed off I am; and my being closed off isn't going to "make any of this easier". I laughed through tears and said "NONE of this is easy", and thought to myself how that was such a shitty thing to a client.

I also keep deflecting any talk of feelings and instead talking about all of the cool stuff I am doing now. Which is ok, to an extent: I picked up my camera again for the first time in ages, and it's the only thing (other than marrying my husband) that has felt good to me in a really long time. I stay up late researching new things to go and photograph. I'm an adventurer right now, albeit on a tight budget.

But I still have a lot to work through, and I need someone to talk to. Maybe writing again can help fill the gaps that my current therapist isn't quite fitting into. And if she doesn't fill those gaps? I can always get another therapist.

Maybe writing more will help me find my voice even further. Picking up a camera has definitely helped with that.

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I had a moment today at the gas station where I felt like the guy in the next car took a picture of me. I felt that familiar crush of shame, because of my body. It's no secret to me that I'm currently in the worst shape of my entire life. But this year has been a nonstop flood of memories. Sitting with those uncomfortable moments of shame. Ripping off lots of old bandages, and taking some blood and hair with it. It hurt and I wanted to become invisible.

But then, it clicked in my brain. Who cares what he thinks. Who cares if he did take a picture of me, or a video. Who cares where he shared it. Who cares if he made fun of me. I've made fun of plenty of people in my lifetime. Who cares.

The only thing that matters in this goddamned life is not only what you think of yourself, but also how you choose to take care of yourself. And in that moment, I chose to take care of myself by not caring about what that dude was or wasn't doing.

I chose to do what made me feel safest.

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I have been taking extreme care of myself mentally for nearly a year now, at the expense of holding a job and being social. I have stayed home, skipped things, forgotten to go to things. I feel like i'm getting somewhere, but most days, I'm still really sick and really scared. I need to get on some sort of temporary disability, but i'm too proud to fill out the paperwork.

This next year is going to be a series of big changes. I need to figure out what I want to be doing for a living. I need to continue to be a good wife and partner. I need to see my friends more often. I need to make new friends, too. But I'll also only do what I'm able to do.

There are also big changes coming physically. I would like to lose weight, because my body holds me back from so many things (or, rather, I hold myself back from doing things, because of the limitations that I know my body imposes on me in certain situations). I want to make my body smaller. I want to feel like I fit into my own life.  Staying in this current body for so long has been a process of trying to keep myself small by being invisible. But I'm done trying to stay small. I don't deserve a "small" life. How will I do it? It doesn't matter. I will do what is good for me and my body.

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I am 41 today. I can't sleep. I've watched a documentary on a rock photographer. I wrote this entry between my iPad and the laptop. And much like the laptop, I realize that my operating system is out of date. Obsolete. I'm ready to wipe the drive and start out fresh. I realize that like the iPad, i'm running kind of slow, but iPads can always be upgraded, and so can I.

I want to wake up tomorrow and stop carrying around all of the feelings and old ways of thinking that keep me sick; keep me small.  I want to keep those bags set down in a corner. I don't want to carry my hurt with me anymore. I don't want to carry anyone elses crosses. I want to be able to stand up straight again and keep walking into a new place in my life. A space that I deserve. A life that makes me want to just go out and live it. No more weekly therapy. I want to be confident. I want to stop holding my breath.

I want to give a fuck about me for once.

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