My Business Is Everybody’s Business
Last night, half of the residents of Hilltop went to see a movie. I don’t care for movies in theaters so I stayed home as did a few other people (some people were not allowed to go). We sort of chatted and then we played Bananagrams and actually had a really nice/fun time.
When it hit 8:00, it was time to go downstairs to wash up. At this facility the resident bathrooms (we have them in our rooms) are locked during the day and locked over night, with a window of time first thing in the morning and then at 8 when they are unlocked for showers and such. You can earn the privilege of having them unlocked overnight (which I have had for about a week now) but they are always locked during the day. I have a special accommodation regarding my period and my bathroom can be unlocked during the day just while I have my period. I won’t get into details about why it is unlocked other than to say I have really, really heavy periods which are hard to manage. The past two days my bathroom has been unlocked all day and it will be for another couple of days.
So, we finished Bananagrams and it was just about 8 and my peers were wondering if the bathrooms were unlocked and one of them turned to me and said, “But yours is always unlocked.” And I was surprised and I said, “You mean at night? Or during the day?” And she responded, “During the day and at night.” And I was like, WTF! There is only one person here that I have told about my bathroom because I didn’t want any purgers to sneak into my bathroom and purge because they knew my bathroom was unlocked. Meanwhile, another peer heard the conversation and started to get all worked up about it…<sigh>.
Really, I was just so surprised that this woman knew my business. The point of my bathroom accommodation was to give me some space to attend to my heavy periods but I also had been enjoying the fact that I could be discreet about my period. Except, evidently I do not get the luxury of being discreet.
I guess when you live with 7 or 8 other women who are hyper-aware of everything and always comparing and who are confined to a small space there is no such thing as privacy.
Luckily, I have Polly (who is the one person I had told about my bathroom) because I was able to take her aside and express my surprise and anxiety about the fact that everyone seemed to know my business. I really like Polly and am glad I have connected with her here. It is good to have a friend.
Therapy is sooo hard. We finally finished all the social history questions and yesterday was the “List your trauma” day. I tried to convince her that since this data has already been collected and since it was in my timeline assignment that I didn’t actually have to tell her….but she wasn’t buying it. So, I spent the appointment sliding in and out of dissociation. And Meg kept reeling me back in and then addressing more of the questions. It was.not.fun. .
So, I had to tell her and the whole time I was just dying of shame. And feeling disgusting and bad. What I don’t understand is why Meg and everyone else can’t see what a horrible person I am. I don’t think Meg sees it because she doesn’t act repulsed by me. It is the same struggle I have with Team Heidi….I just don’t get what they see in me and why they care. Hilltop Team Heidi is the same way. It just sort of baffles my brain.
At the end of every week, we get our “Contract” which is a paper outlining what we should be working on during the week. I am going list a few of them to give an idea as to what I a working on.
- I will write about what emotions were like in my family and rules around emotions. Based on this assignment I will better understand my struggles with emotions.
- I will write about why I want to be invisible. Based on this assignment I will understand how this came to be.
- I will write a plan about how I would like to incorporate my support system during my treatment.
- I will write in detail about what a day would look like if I acted in ways consistent with my values and beliefs. I will consider relationships, self-talk, self-care, meals, priorities in the investment of energy.
These contracts have a collaborative aspect too. At the beginning of the week, we are given a Pre-Contract where we assess the past week and then have an opportunity to think of assignments for the coming week. And those assignments get integrated into the Contract. Here’s one of those. What I wrote on the Pre-Contract is in quotes.
- I will “list 10 alternative ways to occupy my hands instead of body checking so I have more options.” Based on this I will be able to to work on slowing down the process of body checking with the hopes of understanding the underlying function of it.
There is so much more to say about my days at Hilltop, but not enough time to blog it all…And I notice that I breezed through today’s blog without really addressing what I have been feeling the past couple of days (pretty depressed and hopeless). Perhaps I will have a more feelings oriented blot tomorrow.