I don’t sleep that well, but I do sleep.
I woke up around 10 or 11—I fell into bed exhausted at around 7 without eating lunch or dinner. I ate bread. They happened to have some in the shop when I went to buy vegetables after meeting C. We don’t get bread all the time, so it is kind of a treat. Then I fell asleep again around midnight. I woke up very early in the morning. I don’t know when. Maybe 4. But I didn’t get out of bed until 5:30.
I am clearly too activated. My arousal level is too high, and no matter how much slow breathing I do, I can’t really calm it down. I am not having crisis kinds of emotions. I have a lot of feelings, and they are appropriate to the situation at the moment—the stuff going on with C. So they aren’t really nice feelings. They aren’t pleasant. But they aren’t crushing me and they aren’t numb either. The arousal seems to be about something else.
Very early in the morning, I had this thought that this is my body. It belongs to me and I am safe. I don’t quite know why that popped into my head at that moment. Nothing in particular happened before that thought. Anyway, I had it. And I kind of eased into the feeling of being inside my body.
I felt terrified then. It is terrifying to be in my body and to be alive. It seems to be because my body has all of these breakable things in it. If I am aware of my body, I am aware of tissues and blood and organs. I think this came to mind because, even though it is extremely stressful to deal with C’s cycle of disorganized attachment, I mostly feel present in it now. I am mostly aware of her, aware of me, and able to think while it’s going on without losing touch with the emotional realities. And this feels like me. I am with her, and to a large extent, I am being me. This is really almost the most me I can be, and when I am with her and she is struggling, I am the most me I ever am. This is partly because I have to be. I have to be “on” in a way that I otherwise do not have to be. I cannot sleepwalk my way through a difficult conversation with her. I have to be intensely connected to her, so that I know how she is feeling and can at least guess what she needs. I mean, I really have to imagine very vividly what it is like to be her in those moments so that I can respond. And I also have to be aware of my feelings so that I can manage them and contain them and stay supportive and calm. So in these moments, I am intensely connected to her and intensely connected to myself. She demands, in a way, that I be fully alive, because tuning anything out of the situation will lead to a disruption and more dysregulation for her and probably also for me.
But it is very scary, it seems, to be alive. There are all these things in my body that I have seen on the outside of bodies, where they do not belong. As long as I am alive and breathing, they are going to be there, keeping me alive and breathing. As long as they are there, the potential remains for them to be broken or removed from my body.
The emotions getting triggered by that are fear and horror.
I really think as long as you have never seen the pieces of a body lying scattered everywhere, I mean if you have not seen war or murder, you won’t have any idea what that feels like. I am not sure. Maybe you can imagine. But I think it might be extremely difficult to imagine.
So I guess that’s what I need to deal with. At 2:30, I will go down to the Holy Site and meet C, and I don’t what mode she will be in, and whatever it is, I will need to cope with it and try to help her cope with it. I don’t know that I will know how to do this, and I won’t know until I get there and it happens. But this is my issue that I need to deal with. I need to deal with being so horrified and afraid of what I saw of death, that I am afraid of it as a constant potential in my own life. That is my work and my healing that I need to do. So I guess I’ll work on that this morning and in the afternoon and I will try to help her with her work and her healing.