Mulling it over….
So, I am a mull-er. Certain things that people say to me or I read or I observe stick in my head and I think about them. I am not talking about that kind of dysfunctional thinking….the obsessing over stuff (which I readily admit I do as well) but actual thoughtful contemplation. I can mull on something that someone said to me ages ago, revisiting it, trying to parse it…Finding the meaning for me.
Here’s an example, many, many years ago, I lost 80lbs by a very strict calorie controlled diet and exercise program. I did it completely on my own….And eventually burned out from the rigidness of it and ultimately gained the weight back. My primary physician at the time (not the same one I have now) was very kind about it and tried to dissuade me from feeling like a failure about it. She made a comment to me, “Most people can’t lose 80lbs at all. I am sure you can do it again.” I mulled on that one for literally 3 years, and not beating myself up about it…Just thinking about what she had said and what it meant. Eventually, with her words in my back pocket to bolster me, I joined Weight Watchers and lost that 80lbs again and then 50 more. (Of course, that weight has also been regained….depression/PTSD will do that to ya!) But I still hear her words in my head and still mull on it.
So…What am I mulling over right now?
- A comment about a month ago made by my PNP about my blood pressure. It had been unusually high at a doctor’s appointment something like 162/100 which I reported to my PNP. She talked to me a bit about it and I was kind of “yeah…whatever” about it. So, she said to me, “Don’t you care that your BP was 162/100?” I don’t know what I said to her at the time. But I have been thinking about her words. Do I care? Yeah, I think I do. So what does this mean to me? That likely I need to make some changes….And I am working on a plan. And I am still mulling.
- Something I read in Childhood Disrupted, “…it can help to remember that while what happened when you were young was no doubt wrong, even unbearable, more often than not, that pattern of family dysfunction was set in place long before you were born…..” That’s a good one for mulling….”that pattern of family dysfunction was set in place long before you born.” Would that mean that it wasn’t actually my fault?
- The fact that the Art Therapist tears up during our sessions or says he’s sorry that bad things happened to me. This one has needed a lot of contemplation on my part…I still don’t get why he would care so much, or be so empathetic to me. Doesn’t he know I am not worth it? And that I deserved the bad things? Or…What if he is right and I didn’t deserve the bad things? And what if his example of tearing up is right too…that it is okay to feel?
A thought crossed my mind Saturday night that set me into a bit of a panic. So…remember the art journals I left with the AT? I have been managing my anxiety about it pretty darn well this weekend and I am prepared for our session today. I feel like I am in a good place considering I have let him see my most vulnerable inner-self.
My panic inducing thought was this: What if he didn’t actually look at the journals yet? Ack! What if I have to stretch out my anxiety management longer? I said I’ve been managing it well…but that’s not to say that I haven’t felt anxious and exposed and uncomfortable. I’d rather not have to feel that for several more days!!!
Hopefully, I am just worried for no reason….just my anxiety fussing at me. Otherwise I might be kind of cranky at the Art Therapist! And I am sure he doesn’t want to start his week with a cranky Heidi-client!