On The Bright Side

On the bright side, the procedure I’m getting is pretty routine, minimally invasive, and has a very low rate of complications.

Believe me, I’m already planning around surviving this. I just bought a cheap concertina, actually. Amazon had one that got decent reviews as a beginner instrument and had an optional 3 year accident/defect plan, so I bit. I had some money from family for Christmas anyway.

Hoping to learn a few folk tunes from the lives I’ve recalled. Build a repertoire. Maybe find some folk musicians locally and jam if I ever get good enough. I don’t know; I haven’t been serious about music in a long time. I was really into it as a kid (I took piano, violin, and trumpet at various points) but Mom was flaky about taking me to lessons. In my teens and 20s I even wrote some songs with the aid of a computer. I still have a Soundcloud with a few pieces I did, everything from 80s style synthpop to a scherzetto for harpsichord and wind. But it’s been a long hiatus; I lost my software during a computer upgrade a few years back and recently I’ve been focused more on writing. But music was my passion long before writing, even if I wasn’t exactly great at it.

Not expecting to become a virtuoso… I just want to rekindle a hobby that I haven’t had a chance to explore in forever. The role of the concertina in those vivid memories of the past, and my interest in the folk music of the British Isles, has been nagging at me for some time now and I’m happy to finally get a chance to explore this.

More Dreams

Another dream log. This one was very unexpected.

I think the first part of the dream had to do with anxiety over my upcoming kidney stone surgery (26 Dec). It kept alternating between this grim city where the poor were being swept away by heavy rains, and a pleasant resort with many people (most of them older) who were going to hold hands and embrace death together. They wanted me there too. We held hands in this sand ampitheater just above a narrow beach. A wave came crashing toward us, massive and frightening. Then out of the wave came a bunch of cheering people and the wave itself disintegrated. I think they were the souls of the dead come to meet their friends and family and take them home. But there was nobody that I recognized.

The next thing I knew I was back in that dreary city next to a manhole cover. Water stood about an inch high above it. I heard the sound of water rushing beneath it, then a thud and muffled screaming. Then blood welled up from under the manhole cover.

Then the dream switched gears again. I was talking to someone and I told them my name.

Theysaid “Oh! You’re Philip K Dick’s daughter!” and I was stunned. I think all I managed was “What!?”

Sure enough, in a magazine from 1980, there was my name in an article about him. Even in the dream I knew this was odd because I was born in 1984.

But somehow I arranged to see him. As in a previous dream, he was still alive and remarried but this time, he was living in a very nice house. We didn’t talk that much but I had the expectation that I’d be back, though why he seemed to think I was his daughter was a question I wanted to ask.

This was a curious sort of thing to dream because I have a good relationship with my father and never felt the need for a father figure. Indeed, during the dream I felt more perplexed than warm.

But I wonder too if this isn’t some harbinger, especially paired with the dreams earlier and another set of dreams from some months ago where I went walking down a beautiful country road carrying my cat who died last February of kidney troubles. I fear I may soon fall prey to complications from the surgery.

It’s not like I can opt out of the surgery either. This stone is big and it’s got my left kidney blown up like a water balloon. It won’t resolve itself; I’ll die of sepsis if I don’t have this surgery.

Please, if you are a person of faith, pray for me. I’m not liking these omens.

Dreams Again

Besides dreaming that I had gone back to drinking again (how I miss the fog!) I also had another dream worth mentioning last night.

I dreamed I was walking past a group of WWI reenactors in Adrian helmets sitting outside huts like the ones they used to have behind the lines. They were really into it, too. If not for the fact they were speaking English they would have been convincing as French soldiers.

They were so into it that they reacted with suspicion when I lingered a moment too long walking past. As I was on my way to my car one of them ran and tried to tackle me. Immediately and without thinking I blurted out “Mon Ami! Je suis Anglais!”

In the dream I was my present self. Also, the Adrian helmets were an odd thing since those didn’t exist in mid-1915 as far as I’m aware. Maybe it means nothing at all. I’m recording it here for the sake of keeping a record of every bizarre WWI related thing that happens.

 

 

 

Pieces

I have so many pieces that don’t fit together.

I spoke to my counselor on Thursday. His thought? There’s definitely a dissociative aspect to the past life thing but that’s not a neat explanation for the whole thing. He pointed out similarities with other cases like mine in the annals of psychology that had no clear explanation. In this age of relative certainty we can be spoiled for knowledge, and take for granted how much we still don’t know about our lives, our minds, and our condition. I was right to try to make peace with it and I needed to be reminded.

Long story short I’m a classic trauma case. A fractured mirror reflecting parts of myself and those I’ve interacted with. I don’t fit the criteria for any given personality disorder but the personality traits I have tell a story of everyone who’s crossed my path in any significant way, and it’s telling. I’ve clearly had some extremely sick, toxic people get hold of me.

To that end, it may actually be beneficial to go back to the old battlefields after all. Inasmuch as all of this is tied up in a knot of everything that’s happened to me in the last 33 years, maybe I can finally fit another piece of that mirror back together. I saw myself in Jack, strung together in some weird way with some inaccessible part of who I am now. Closure is closure even if it’s done vicariously. Maybe it’ll finally come to me what I’m really burying when I finally say my goodbyes to that unlucky Tommy whose life I saw flashing before my eyes.

I don’t know if I’ve lived before. I’ll never be sure of that. But I need to stop trashing myself for working through it this way. I’ve had a lot of bad breaks and it won’t be easy piecing it all together.

Where Do I Go From Here?

The singular thing is, I built so much of my personality, friendships, and activities around things I no longer feel it’s healthy to believe. Where do I go from here? I have to rebuild everything from the ground up. I hardly know myself.

My written work over the last several years was dominated by reality testing too. What will inspire me now?

I had to come down some time. It’s just that after a while the delusions became such a part of me that I have nothing left without them.

There won’t be any trip to Flanders. There won’t be any more push toward the priesthood. Even my plans to live as a woman are up in the air now. I suppose if this blog has any remaining purpose it will be the record of how I get my life back, or make a valiant effort to do so.

Confessions of a Psycho Bitch

You want to know what’s going on?

I want to be seriously ill because the alternative is being something I don’t want to be. That’s all there is.

The last thing I want to be is an unanchored person. Someone who understands the true desolation of total freedom. A loopy “special snowflake” who’s too weird to survive. That’s what I fear.

That’s why I want my constant religious conversions, odd ideations, and aberrant identifications to be pathological because if they’re not, then I have to integrate them. And I already tried that. People treated me with fear and suspicion. Even if I wasn’t insane, people surely believed I was! After a while it’s a strong disincentive to continue with something when people are actively spreading rumors about your mental health behind your back.

The only alternative would be to suppress these things and put on a public face and basically go back to the very worst of my pre-transition life. But I don’t want that. I hate hiding behind something false. I just want to be real, open, and authentic with no secrets. I’m sick of having to choose between being miserable for the sake of mitigating fear and rejection, or being myself and driving people away.

More and more I’ve been thinking, there has to be an illness there. This has to be wrong. I’m starting to hope the people talking about me behind my back are right. After all, mentally healthy people don’t get shunned for being “crazy,” do they? If I’m crazy then that’s a great relief of responsibility. If my weirdness is just madness, it can be fixed.

So that’s what I want. I want to be cured of these things that drive people away from me. These things that get people talking about how I supposedly have schizophrenia or a personality disorder (though I haven’t been diagnosed with either of these things… yet). Clearly the big picture isn’t just the state of my mind but how the state of my mind has impaired my ability to be accepted by peers. And to that end I yield to social pressure. I’m going to keep trying to get diagnosed with something that can be isolated, identified, and treated. I’ve been trying for years. I’m frustrated. I just want to be treated like something other than a biohazard.

Enough.

I’ve had enough.

I’m going to do my damnedest to try to find a pathological explanation for all of this. You don’t simply undergo the kinds of personality/perceptual shifts I’ve undergone in the last decade unless you either are endowed with some extraordinary gift or are seriously unwell.

Considering the misery that everything since 2012 has brought me, I would much rather believe that there is something seriously wrong with me. I wish they’d told me I was psychotic because that’s at least treatable. But that’s been ruled out. I’m never fortunate enough to get an easy answer.

I want this to be treatable. I wish I’d written off these memories as just some artifact of stress instead of actively trying to disprove them to myself.  Really, it would be OK with me if I found out that this whole mess was caused by Geschwind syndrome and could be managed with anticonvulsants. I would rather be well, but I’d rather be sick than for all of this fantastical garbage to be true.