“Are you OK?”

I’m tired of asking this question of my husband: “Are you OK?”

What it really means is this: “Your behavior is all I can concentrate on, not my own feelings, needs or dreams. Every move you make, everything you say, everything you don’t say … I notice all of it and try to read your feelings and thoughts 24/7. You let out a sigh, and I think you’re upset. You raise your voice at the football game on TV, and I flinch and hope you’re not angry with me. I could come up with a million examples, but overall, it’s exhausting to live this way. I’ve learned that I do it, and I recognize that I do it — this “hyper-vigilance” that’s part of PTSD. But I haven’t been able to stop it. I’m angry about that. I’m also starting to wonder if I really can live with another person and be emotionally and physically healthy. It has nothing to do with you and everything to do with me. One answer may be more trips alone, like the one I took to Costa Rica, so I can have time and space to myself without having to battle it out within myself all the time. Right now, I don’t have a better answer because I can’t go more than about 2 minutes without turning my focus outward.”

October was a tough month

leavesIt’s been a long time since I had a month like October: filled with more ups and downs and I ever anticipated.

On the “up” side, I reconnected with some wonderful friends — people who I believe truly love me. I also saw most of my family, who I also know really love me.

Also on the “up” side, I started a new job, which I think is going to be great once it gets rolling.

On the “down” side, I was betrayed by someone who I thought really cared about me. But now, I realize they don’t. I had to go back to my domestic violence/trauma counselor to get some help for that whole situation.

Also on the “down” side, I went through all that emotional agony regarding my book, which took a terrible toll on me. It cost me almost 3 weeks of writing time on my fiction; I couldn’t get my head on straight enough to concentrate.

So as I go into November, I’m taking the good parts of October and leaving the bad stuff behind. I’m plowing ahead in my new job, and I’ve put on my “Maggie Waters” pen name hat and am writing my next short story to publish on Amazon within the next two weeks, at the latest.

Bye, bye, October. Hello, November.