Can’t breath without you!

woman-behind-transparent-wall-720020603-5b36f5774cedfd0036034b5eLet me tell you a story about a wall made of glass. It’s thick and transparent, you can see the whole world through it, you can hear them, you can even love them. With all your heart, even if they can’t reach out to you, so you’re always alone. It happens, you know?

We make it happen.

Sometimes, when you love someone with all your heart, they become your whole world. One person is given the keys to your happiness, he or she becomes the guardian of your inner peace. So they can destroy your life, without even knowing. It is insane to risk so much, you know?

We’re doing it anyway.

My favorite person lives beyond a thick, transparent wall. I can’t reach him and he cannot hear my voice. My love cannot melt a stone and my sadness is invisible to him. Tenderness collides with the sharp edges of his wall and turns into anger. And that’s not love, you know?

We are co-dependent.

Sometimes, by the grace of God, I’m given a small, a very small window into the wall. That’s when I cry. That’s when my defenses are falling and my heart aches for him. That’s when I tell him how precious he is to me. That’s when I convince myself that he really means when he says “I love you”. That’s when I get mad and I call him names, I hurt him, I cheat him, I push him away. It is ironic, you know?

We waste the little, precious time we still have.

“-So, now, when we could be happy, you get mad. I swear I cannot understand you!

-Don’t touch me! I can’t stand it! Let me alone, I really hate you!

-Why? 

-Because…I needed you so much and you created a wall between us. And now you want to hold me and to love me and I…I’m suffocating! I can’t take the chance, I can’t be vulnerable again.

-So you don’t love me, right?

-Oh, if you only knew…your love was like air to me. You took that away…

-You know how busy I am! Now I have a little time and you reject me. What am I supposed to understand?

Nothing…just leave me alone…”

I couldn’t breath without his love, I still can’t. Heartbroken and lost…is there any other way of being in love? Could we breath again, even if every single breath hurts like hell?

My favorite person lives beyond a wall. It’s thick, but it’s not transparent anymore. It became blurry from my desperate attempts to climb over, to scratch the edges, to gasp for air…And, beyond fear, anger or desperation, even beyond my BPD, or his narcissistic way of loving me, there’s a sad part too, you know?

We don’t have the tears anymore. To polish its surface…

 

 

The source of the picture: https://www.verywellmind.com/cleithrophobia-2671737

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He was never lost…

431472_10150575400111186_23942128_nOne…Two…Three…Four…You are walking in a crowded place…the same place where you had the last panic attack…you recognize the people…measure the level of  your anxiety now.

Definitely seven…

I whisper the words to myself, but I know someone heard me. I feel his eyes on me as I try to control my breathing. On a scale from 0 to 10, where zero is “almost asleep” and ten is “panic attack”, I’m not seven anymore…

Seven and a half…almost eight…

I have to turn back the counting, to return to my safe zone, around 5. I need my routine, I have to stop trying to escape my own existence. I can’t be someone else! But these strangers around me know nothing about BPD…so, maybe, if I play it perfectly, I could convince them that I’m okay. And then I could convince myself…

Eight…

I’m not breathing anymore, I’m gasping…My heart hurts and my aching knees are betraying me, a cold sweat fills my palms and my moves are uncontrollably weird. I have to run away…

I climb the stairs trembling and crying. This old church, cold and lonely, this is now my comfort place. I close the door behind me and the counting stops too. Tears…they’re setting me free, as I run into his arms.

“Just hold me…Why have you left me?”

His eyes are telling me that he never left, but I can’t believe him anymore. I need him and, still, I push him away. I love him and, still, I’m so angry!

“You knew! You knew that BPD destroys relationships, families, souls! Why did you let this happen to me? What kind of savior are you? One who never cares!”

His arms embrace me with light, he’s speaking to my burning heart, words of peace, words of love. That he’s here, that he was never gone. I’m holding so tight to this warmth he’s giving me.

“Are you upset with me? Please don’t be! I know I don’t pray and the church is the last place I want to be. I know I question the truths I’ve been told about you. I know I despise the priests I used to respect. I am a black sheep. Can I be yours? Your black sheep?”

I see Heaven in his smile. I see the gates opening for me. I see the white wings prepared to carry me above the pain and the loneliness. I feel the promise of Love. I need Him so much…and it feels so good to admit this to myself. After so many months of denial. 

“BPD can’t take you away from me, this is what you wanted me to see…Thank you, Jesus…Please stay with me.”

Six, Five, Four, Three…Come back, Isabella!

-How do you feel? The level of anxiety during the hypnotic induction was high, still, you managed to lower it.

-I didn’t…He did. I met Him in the old church…

-I see…dissociation can be a defense mechanism…

-I was not dissociating! I saw the old church in my mind, but it was a metaphor!

-A metaphor…

-For my heart. I needed to look deep inside it…

-What were you searching?

-My faith. It’s still there, He’s still there. He was never lost…I just isolated Him because anger seemed stronger than love. And I was given the chance to bring Him back where He belongs…

-To bring him where?

-In the center of my life… 

 

 

 

He used to call me Carrie…

images (1)“-How can you say you love me, if you never saw my face?

-I just love you. Just like that! I don’t need a picture, I can see you in my mind and you are handsome…

-Carrie…I love you too. OMG, I really am…”

He used to call me Carrie, even if he knew that’s not my real name. We were living on the edge of fantasy, so far away from the real world, so deep into dissociation.  I want to believe that he knew…that he knew all along that I’m lying. I want to convince myself that he pretended to believe my lies, just to offer me a place to escape.

He treated me like I were 21, but I was acting like 15. Like a teenager…It wasn’t a lie, not completely, since my emotional age was blocked far in the past. It was like living in a parallel world, where time stops at our own will. Our time stopped at the age of day-dreaming.

Real life was a bad place. A place where my favorite person abandoned me. A place where anger replaced love and tears took the place of passion. Every single night. Like a drug addict, I used to desperately search on line for feelings, emotions, love. That’s when I met him.

I had no safe place, except for my dissociative state of mind. He gladly joined me there, since I made him feel precious, loved, treasured. Looking back, I know for sure that he encouraged my craziness, without knowing how deep I’ll sink…How would I blame him? Can you blame the light for attracting a butterfly?

I had no idea how sick I really was. I didn’t knew that I’m dissociating. I was completely unaware of my BPD.

I meant no harm…

I want to believe that he was kind…

I often asked myself if he could love the “real me”…

No, not like he loved the fantasy. And that’s the sad part of this confession.

It happened years ago, but it still haunts me every time I hear the song. “Carrie”…my song. Some ghosts will never vanish, no matter how many time I’ll say “I’m sorry”. A part of me is still blocked there, at 21. I still remember the colors, the rhythm, the playful words, the flirt, the passion.

Back then, this was all I had. Forgive me, Georgio.

And thank you.

“-Look, Carrie, I don’t think I’m asking that much!

-I told you I don’t want to!

-Why are you so stubborn? I just want to listen to your voice!

-I don’t feel comfortable doing this…it was supposed to be just an on line relationship…

-So, this is how you really feel, after everything! Damn it, Carrie!

-Yes, this is how I really feel. It’s over, I guess…

-You bet it is! And I could say so many things now about you and your…

-Please don’t…don’t say those things…I am sorry…

-Yeah, right…I wont say what I think about you. Just…I don’t want to ever have anything to do with you!

-You wont. I promise…” 

 

 

The image contains a part of the lyrics of “Carrie” by Europe. Here you can listen to the whole song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KmWE9UBFwtY

From beyond the walls of doubt…

hopeful2-2017-bayswanto-900x367My heart beats faster and faster as I dial the number. It’s 8 o’clock in the morning, it’s Christmas and I’m sure I’m breaking some sort of boundary. Nah, I’m being silly! The phone will surely ring in an empty room. Long after the holidays, when my therapist will ask about this call, I’ll invent some explanation.

Hello…

His voice awakens me from my daydreaming…he sounds so tired! And he shouldn’t be there, he told me he won’t work during the holidays. Why is he at the office? At 8 o’clock on Christmas morning…And how do I explain this awkward situation now?

-Ummm…Good morning…

Isabella? 

-Yes…I’m sorry, I shouldn’t bother like this…

You know, the timing is perfect, I was just making some notes about our last session. How do you feel?

-I’m…okay…I guess. I almost had a panic attack, but I managed to stop it with that technique you taught me. It worked!

These are great news! I remember you were worried about spiraling into some Christmas depression. How are things now?

-Well, I’m surprised myself, but I actually enjoyed Christmas Eve. It’s weird, even to me…

I wouldn’t call it weird…this is the result of your commitment to the therapeutic process. Your hard work and your complete honesty…Isabella, I sensed an hesitation in your voice. Is there anything you want to talk about?

-I have this feeling and I can’t explain it, like I’m afraid to breath…like everything is good now, but, if I breath, if I move just an inch, if I close my eyes, then it will all disappear and…

…and you’ll re-live the last year’s Christmas? 

-Everything was right, I was away from home, but surrounded by the people I love, I was okay…and suddenly I wasn’t…That voice became stronger and I almost gave in…

But you didn’t…you did not run away, you did not jump off the cliffs…you stayed strong. Tell me, what exactly are you afraid of now?

-I don’t know…

Are you afraid to relax, maybe? Because relaxing means losing control, is this how you feel?

-…

Let’s do something about this fear! And let it be magical, because it is Christmas after all. Ready?

-Yes!

What do you see around you?

-Hmm…the Christmas Tree, chocolate cookies, the room is a bit messy from all the playing…ah, oranges, red ones!

I bet they are delicious!

-Yesss…

Okay, now close your eyes. Keep them closed…now breath in and out…one deep breath…you’re doing great, stay like this a little more…ready…you can open your eyes. Do you see the magic?

-Not really…I mean, I feel calmer, but everything is the same.

That’s the magic! Everything is the same around you, everything stayed the same. You are still here, enjoying the Christmas, the room is still messy from all the playing, the Christmas Tree still shines, red oranges are still delicious. 

-Oh, my God…

Tears of joy?

-Thank you…

Everything stayed the same, but you cry tears of joy…see, you can relax, you can even close your eyes, you can even breath…

-Nothing can drag me back to those cliffs…

Only if you go there by your own will. But, even if you do, you wont be alone on the cliffs. I will be there with you.

 

For every prayer, for every message, for every good thought, for creating a safe place for me…THANK YOU! For this miraculous Christmas, dear friends…THANK YOU!

 

 

The source of the image: http://www.infovisual.co/hopeful.html

 

I’m breathing under water!

1Every Christmas I’m drowning, slowly and painfully into the deepest waters you could ever imagine. I spiral and I fall, I’m fighting the waves of panic and anger, desperation and emptiness. And this is the first year when I’m not fighting anymore…

I am borderline and every Christmas is like opening every scar that once covered my bleeding heart. And creating new wounds. I search for a balm, any kind of balm, and I don’t care what I’m about to loose, I just want this pain away. And this is the first year when I’m not searching anymore…

Every little thing triggers the monsters inside and I scream a silent scream and I die an unseen death. I am alive still, half here, half on the other side. Turn apart by the very thing that should make me feel whole. And this is the first year when I refuse to be triggered…

Love hurts the most on Christmas, cruel ghost that’s ripping apart my soul. Between my expectations and my reality, the abyss grins at me and only the icy wind wipes away the tears I should’t cry. Every word becomes a lie and every “I love you” ghosts away in darkness. And this is the first year when love wont hurt…

My faith is never pure, nor blind on Christmas Eve…night holds my lost spirit prisoner, while my eyes wander on the cloudy sky. There’s no star and there’s no prayer, hell is here and I’m living it with everything in me. And this is the first year when I wont pray for an escape…

Every Christmas I’m drowning. Not this year. See, I learned to dance with the waves, to spiral up when the abyss is calling me, to chose life over death. I don’t know how or why, but Someone up there seems to love me more than I love myself.

So, this Christmas I’ll be too busy to cry. Too busy to die.

Because I’m also learning to breath under water…

May these days be blessed with a special kind of Light. For you and for me, to keep us safe out there, in the cold, wide world…

 

 

The source of the image: https://www.shutterstock.com/pl/video/clip-1977604-starry-night-animation

Every flickering light

tracking-shot-from-sad-snowman-to-the-christmas-tree-with-santa-claus_qjigy5js__F0000The little girl in me was waiting impatiently. This is the moment! The Christmas Tree and all its decorations, the little lights, the red and the sparkles, the music and the joy! She wanted all! And I said: “It’s alright and it’s true, every flickering light has a special story behind it. This is the moment to bring your story to life!”

It was supposed to be happy and joyful, and I was willing to forgive and forget all the little things that didn’t happened right these days. That he never responded to my love message, that he seemed so bothered by my silly ways to show affection…that he wanted me different, improved…someone else, someone I’ll never be! And I was willing to forgive and forget!

But he just rolled over his eyes when I mentioned the Christmas decorations, he showed nothing but contempt and self-sufficiency when I tried to be playful and childlike. He backed away instead of stepping in. So the child in me started to yell and to blame him, to cancel every good emotion! The spiral sucked me in and joyfulness didn’t survived!

I felt like hating the man I love.

Through yelling and reproaches, he calmly said “Is this the Christmas spirit that you want to create? Is this how you want your family to remember the Christmas Tree moment?”.

The little girl left crying, feeling defeated. The adult took control. He was right, yelling will never solve our problems. I was only yelling out of helplessness, like a baby wanting to be cradled. But I am not a baby.

And no one will cradle me.

So I did the right thing: I apologized to my children for losing control like this. I put some music, country Christmas songs, the most calming and relaxing music I could find. I let my kids chose the colors and the decorations and I followed their instructions. The Tree looked magical! Their eyes were shining! And I felt in peace.

The little girl in me saw the flickering lights and she decided to settle for less than what she bargained for.

For she wanted love.

And, after all, what’s love…but a flickering light, trying to make its way through the darkness…

 

 

The source of the image: https://www.videoblocks.com/video/tracking-shot-from-sad-snowman-to-the-christmas-tree-with-santa-claus-rxn6qsj

 

 

 

No, I will not dance with you!

download (4)

“Sometimes I feel like the whole world is against me, like living on an hostile planet! I can’t find my place and I face one emotional abuse after another! How would I trust someone, anyone, when I know for sure they’re going to hurt me?”

-Tell me about the moment when the world became an hostile planet.

“I was seven and my parents spent a lot of money to organize me a birthday party. They wanted to help me, I guess, to feel more confident…Anyway, they did an extra effort for me…

-It sounds like they really cared.

“They invited all the kids from the neighborhood. I didn’t even liked some of the kids they invited. Correction: I hated some of the kids they invited!”

-Did they know you hate those kids?

“Of course not! I never truly spoke about how I truly feel! Not with my parents!”

-Why? Were you afraid to talk about your feelings?

“Yes…see, they wanted me to be happy and popular. I was afraid I’ll disappoint them.”

-What would have happen if you disappoint them?

“They would have left me. Stop loving me. They loved me because I made them so proud. If I had shown them how miserable, sad, isolated was truly feeling…then…”

-It’s alright…remember our pact? The tears are welcomed here…Please tell me about the party.

“Oh, it was great! Good food, a big cake, music! The kids brought me gifts.”

-You say it was great, but, while you’re saying it, you cry. Why?

“I cried at my party. I hid in a room and I cried. See, the kids were having so much fun, dancing and playing. They forgot about me…At my own party, I felt so alone, so rejected, so sad! So ignored, like being invisible…”

-Like you don’t matter, not even when the event was all about you…

“Yes”

-What happened next? You were crying alone in a room…

“Well, when the cake arrived, they started to search for me. My parents found me. They asked me why am I crying…”

-What did you tell them?

“I cry because no one is dancing with me…”

-How did they react?

“They…”

-It’s alright, take your time…

“They went to a boy…they knew I have a secret crush on him…And they told him, I overheard…”

-What did they told him?

“Bella is crying because no one is dancing with her. Please go to her and invite her to dance. Will you do that? oh, you’re such a good boy!”

-I see…

“He invited me to dance, I felt so humiliated. But I accepted, to make them happy! He left right after the dance. I…I never wanted another birthday party. Even now, I don’t like my birthday.”

-Isabella, if you could go back in time, what would you tell to the sweet, lonely little Bella?

“Thank you for calling her like this. I guess I’d tell her that she is loved and, no matter if no one will dance with her at that stupid party…she will grow stronger, she will rise above…”

-I feel there is more…go on…there’s no wrong or right here…

“I would tell her to stand tall and to simply say NO. To the dance, to the party, to the lies she thinks she’s bound to say just to find a little love. She is perfect the way she is!”

-She truly is. So are you…

 

 

The source of the image: http://getdrawings.com/couple-dancing-drawing

 

 

Mistreated, misplaced, misunderstood

Sad-girl-missing-her-love-emotion-lonely-feeling-photo-image“-Shut up! Just shut up, you are embarrassing me! Goshhhh! Stop acting like a stupid kid when you’re in public!!!”

The shock immediately sent me into dissociation. Between crying, pushing him, running away or other possible reaction, my brain chose to freeze. Here is the whole story:

I’m walking into this room full of strangers and all eyes are on me. First time to his company’s Christmas party. He never invited me before, but, this time, it was all about family. So, he had to…

I’m wearing one of my prettiest dress and, with my 8 pounds lost, I could say I look okay. I was never overweight, but, lately, I just wanted to return to my 20 years old figure. My hair flows free and the make up is discreet. I kinda like the girl in the mirror…

He introduces me to a young woman he works with. She’s 26 and she definitely could be a model. I feel reassured by her warm smile and the way she embraces me when we’re introduced to each other. They are all so nice and smiling! I feel all the tension simply melting away as we engage in the small talks. I fit in.

I actually fit in.

He’s tense and seems bothered by my easy-going way with people. I’m sorry. I don’t know why, but I’m sorry. He shows me the conference room, this is the place where he recently had a presentation. It was a huge success and I smile and turn to him:

-Is this the place where you had the presentation? The one when they applauded you?

His eyes rolls over, his face turns angry.

-Shut up! Just shut up, you are embarrassing me! Goshhhh! Stop acting like a stupid kid when you’re in public!!!”

He whispers the words, but a few pairs of eyes turn to us. He turns his back. I freeze.

A golden light and a field of colorful flowers. I’m there, laughing, playing, running bare foot and the grass feels soft. A ladybug found its way to my palm and I keep her protected. It’s warm and it smells like roses…

Reality control NOW! I come back from dissociation almost in tears. A hot wave invades my cheeks and, in slow moves, I walk out of the room to hide my reddish face.

And suddenly the kindness fades away. The inner mirror becomes cruel and shows me how dull, uninteresting, unable to fit in, uninspired I truly am. It’s a lie, it’s the way I’m still punishing myself. That’s how my therapist would say, but he’s not here.

The one I love, yes, he is here. And I embarrass him.

 

 

The source of the image: https://www.theodysseyonline.com/to-love-broken-girl

 

As you run for your life…

Running-scared-girlThe man in front of me has the deepest blue eyes I’ve ever seen, they’re absorbing the light, like two abysses. If I would look closer, I might be able to see my reflection in these deep oceans. My messy hair and the freckles I always hated…I wont look closer!

His fingers draw little circles on the white papers he reads. I wonder if he noticed the effort I put in the fancy letters I used to complete my answers. If I would touch his hand, I might be able to feel his warmth. Still, I am freezing, trembling, with a cold sweat covering my palms…I wont touch him!

His ring finger on his left hand has a lighter trace, contrasting the tanned skin of his arms. There was a wedding ring, it was there in the summer, now it’s gone. So is the light in his eyes. If I would be his friend, I might be able to listen and, maybe, to say to right words, to bring the light back where it belongs. Still, my lips stay sealed while my own ring finger feel the lack of my wedding ring as the cruelest pain it ever felt. I took it off when…Well, I wont be his friend!

Because he is my therapist. And the fancy letters I wrote as answers to some personality questionnaire have no relevance because I know why I am here. To fight my dark side.

His eyes now embrace mine and he’s smiling.

“Let’s talk about this. You said you feel like you’re constantly running for your life.”

I smile back as the panic attack settles down. I tell him, in simple words, about the moment when I started to run. It was when I lost my safe place…

“Where was your safe place?”

I look down, because I know that what I’m about to say it’s wrong. It’s always wrong to build your safe place in the arms of someone, even if he swore that his love will be everlasting. It’s just wrong…and it hurts.

“Would you want to establish a new safe place? A stronger one? Maybe something completely and entirely yours…not related to someone’s behavior towards you?”

I do…

“Would you be willing to stop running while we build this stronger safe place?”

We? Not me alone…Then it will be alright.

Then…maybe…for a while…I would stop running. But, no! Wait! What if I can’t stop? What if I destroy everything again? What if I’m too afraid and I need to constantly run? What if staying means lying and dying?

He takes my hand and I was right, it is warm.

“Then I’ll keep you company on your run. I’ll be here for you, while you need to run for your life. Just until you feel strong enough to stay…”

 

 

The source of the image: https://steemit.com/story/@abuoshioke/his-voice

 

 

A heart wide open…

Broken-Mirror_Evening-Sky-Anscochrome

The angry winter’s wind hollows through my naked soul, but all I do is smiling. Here I am, in the middle of nowhere…and I would run and hide, but I don’t have my safe place anymore. Constantly, like a mantra, I keep repeating my name. He said I can control this urge of self-destruction, he said I can be…

…normal?

That’s how I asked with tears of hope in my eyes. Because, once I lost the feeling of normality, it also lost myself. And it became my greatest dream, something he gently corrects every time I even approach the subject. I know he’s trying to protect me from…myself. That’s what therapists do, isn’t it?

“You can be in control.”

In control of this rage inside, always self-orientated, always self-harming…

In control of this fear of being abandoned, irrational feeling that’s destroying everything I try to build…

In control of this tornado of emotions that overwhelms me, leaving me empty inside…

So I’m learning to be in control…

I’m Isabella and I’m Borderline. I live with a heart wide open, just like an open wound that keeps bleeding and keeps breaking. I’m in therapy and I’m in love.

And this is the way I choose to tell my story…