Nearing the Top of the Mountain

It has been a haul to get here. I spend so much mental and emotional energy on the heavy lifting required to get through my day to day that I don’t work much on my physical fitness. I could not net my butt up a mountain right now, my physical strength would give out well before I got to the top. But those mental mountains, the emotional climbs? I’m just about to make it over another one, much to my surprise (and a little bit of delight somewhere under the pain and exhaustion).

I know I don’t want to do any conference speaking for a while. If I do any more, it’ll be on my own or with partners that I know will be courteous, professional and prepared. The amount of chaos I have been through with my current speaking partner is not something I will repeat. I don’t know if I want to keep blogging, a lot seems overwhelming right now and I’m still not over that final bit of climb, so I don’t have a good picture of my capacity right now. I know I need to make some lifestyle changes, which started with my new job, and the transition period has been so difficult that…I really think I don’t have a clear picture of “normal”, because nothing has been yet. I think I have a glimpse of it, and I like it, and I like the decisions I’ve made in the last three months and where I’m headed now. But I’m still so tired and having so many difficulties managing my PTSD symptoms, which have gotten severe in the last couple of weeks. I’m ready to shut down and cut everyone off, and somewhere far back in my head I don’t want to do that, but it seems like my only option at the moment to regain a sense of calm and order.

“I’ll just cut everyone off and start over” is not going to fix things for me, and my problems will go wherever I go until they are addressed. So will my habit of attaching to or allowing attachments that aren’t good for me. And since my new job is more public-facing than the work I was doing previously, I really need the time and space to do the work on me once I get over the current mountain.

Usually when I come off a difficult period like this, I go a bit manic and don’t take good care of myself. I break a little, and can’t keep it together to walk down the back side, but rather tumble haphazardly down, crashing into things as I go till I land in a heap at the base. I don’t want to do that this time, I want to come down carefully in a way that develops another type of strength, and I want to be intentional about it. I think I can do it, but it will be very different from what I’ve done before, and I don’t quite know what it looks like. And I’ll probably slip and crash down a bit, but this time I have more tools to stop my fall and slow my roll as I make my way back down.

person standing on top of rock
Photo by Suliman Sallehi on

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