Out From the Shadows – Part 1

Date Published

March 4, 2021

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Personal Life | Writing Process

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About 20 years ago, I started experiencing this strange health issue: I would get these “flash” fevers and chills due to sudden urinary tract infections (UTI’s). I’ve had other issues in this area most of my life due to some internal scar tissue but these were new. They occurred with little warning – I would find myself suddenly becoming tired, yawning constantly and having strong neck and shoulder pains. Then – wham! Next thing I know I’m experiencing chills so severe it was difficult to breathe.

The only way I’ve found to deal with them is to get as warm as possible. I throw on whatever heavy clothes are nearby and then top the usual bedding with additional throws and another bedspread doubled over. I shiver/stagger my way under the pile of blankets and then add the final piece: a heating pad that is always ready to go by the bed. I turn it up to high and place it on my stomach. Then I hunker down and ride out the waves of chills that pass over me.

If I’m lucky, the spell only lasts about 30 – 45 minutes. For a few minutes the chills are overpowering and I’m gulping in breath between teeth chatters; then they diminish until they almost disappear. Then they’re back. Rinse and repeat until they eventually just go away. If things are bad, a second series of chills begins.

Afterwards, my body tells me there’s something wrong. Conditions need to change – pronto.

Everything that, a few moments prior, was aiding me against the onslaught of these chills is now causing extreme discomfort. I’m now stuck inside a convection oven roasting to death. I can’t fling everything off fast enough to bask in the coolness of normality again. I made it. Yeah, it was rough, but the pain and fear are gone and I’m breathing deep sighs of relief.

Why tell you this?

Because I seem to be going through the very same thing on a psychic/emotional level right now. For years, I’ve been cocooned in layer upon layer of protective defense mechanisms to ward off the pain of the past. Now, however, things are different. These very protections are now stifling me. I have to throw them off – I no longer need them. Relying on them is causing more problems.

When I started this blog, I promised myself and you, my audience, that I would be as honest as possible. I promised that I would share how I was using the novel I labored to create to deal with my depression, anxiety, and PTSD. And I knew the day would eventually arrive when I’d need to be more open than I’d generally been before. It seems that day is here – a little sooner than I expected, but the universe seems to have provided some tools that have sped the process up a lot. Whatever – I’m ready.

What you’re now reading is the first of a series of posts dealing with parental enmeshment at an extreme level. These posts are the result of work that I’m doing with a video course by Lauren Sapala titled, “You Are A Writer – Getting Past the Fear and Finally Moving Forward.” (For more information about the course, read here.) I’ve gone through the first couple of sessions which deal with toxic procrastination – a common occurrence among sensitive, intuitive writers. Lauren’s belief is that codependency/parental enmeshment is the primary cause for this severe form of procrastination. To overcome it, we must deal with this enmeshment by creating boundaries.

(I’m not going to go into things too deeply here into the teachings – if you’re interested in learning more, check out Lauren’s course. I’ve been extremely pleased so far, even if it has brought a lot of shit to the surface. Instead, I’m choosing to focus on what has bubbled up as I worked through these initial lessons. My own experience clearly validates Lauren’s teachings and I feel the need to pass this on in case it may help someone else reading this.)

This is probably a good place to stop this intro. I’ve written some things already that would probably serve as decent background information to what I’m going to get into shortly. If you haven’t already read it, it may prove helpful in understanding some of the dynamics I will be discussing.

Oh, one more thing – I’m kinda new to this whole trigger thing. Just know that there will be various triggers in the sections that follow. I’ll try and classify them “correctly” but please bear with me if I don’t quite get it right. Thanks.

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Photo by Peter Forster on Unsplash

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