Hi Support System,

How are all of you doing?

Thanks for still listening to me. It helps.

I bought more clothes yesterday. I had an interview and recognized I had a wardrobe fail. Maybe worked out okay (still waiting to hear—principal is under quarantine???)

I only recognized this as a trigger just now, almost 24 hours after the purchases were made. I was walking around downtown, indirectly meandering my way there, and feeling that dreadful feeling of crying baby that suggests to me now I want something I think maybe I can’t have, wondering what set it off. Well, maybe the anticipation of the attention on myself.

When I got to the shop I thought I’d buy it at, I found myself gravitating to the row of black of things. I had already decided I needed a black blazer, but this was the black shirts. One voice in my head was thinking something like, “I have to buy colours.”

And some other part of me said, “It’s okay to like black.”

I felt better. Like a lot better. Hugely better. A space opened up inside myself, it seemed. Trying things on, I looked in the mirror and I thought I actually looked nice. It wasn’t this painful thing where I had to look at someone I didn’t even quite recognize.

I think this matters.

On and off, I have felt suicidal today. Not always exactly the way you might think. Not that my life is hopeless. There is a kind of random feel to it, like I feel really bad, but I don’t actually know why.

I began to think so much of what has gone on with me inside is that emotions and memories of the past surface, and it has not been in the past been safe to feel them. It was like, “Try harder not to feel this.” Maybe that was a distortion, but that’s how I took things a lot of the time, whether that was intended or not.

I think a lot of the shame I feel is about that. It’s a shame about having PTSD and re-experiencing the past. Not based necessarily on blaming myself for it, although that’s the ground our minds run over when we feel ashamed, but just because it seemed to be disallowed. Just it is not allowed. Naturally, when something is not allowed and is happening anyway, we find someone to blame. But it isn’t about the blame, in the first place. It’s about the disallowance.

And I began to think also some part of me remembers being in so much pain it felt impossible to communicate that pain to someone else. There were no words for it, and expressing it through actions seemed the only way to do it.

I know how bad it was. Of course, it also actually felt that bad. Of course, it felt I could not survive one more horror.

Other parts of me had just never registered that. It was bad. It also felt bad, and part of this process is putting the felt sense of anguish together with the events and circumstances that were so anguishing. I can’t just “know” it felt bad in my head with no felt sensations to go with that. The felt sensations have been recorded. They are in my brain. I am learning what they are.

The complicating factor is how disallowed I have learned the pain is. It can be felt, and that makes it better.