monster in the mirror

today at work, i turned to my favorite pediatrician- who quite honestly may also be the kindest human i have ever met. She was telling me about her weekend, and a type of yoga she tried. i was tearing up. she looked at me- “Savannah are you okay?”

water. works. the worst question someone can ask you when you are already holding back tears. I was absolutely inconsolable. After i slowed down, i asked her if she thought i was a bad person. She proceeded to laugh at first, and then she realized … i meant it. She started to ask me a plethora of questions- to which I broke down and told her how terrible I have been to someone i love deeply for a year and a half. how my nervous system overacts and i go absolutely insane when i feel threatened, raise my voice, will ask the question twice bc i want a different answer for safety and how i have had multiple people tell me they are afraid of me. i explained how i used testing, pushing, pulling, stonewalling, starving of intimacy and a plethora of other horrible defense tactics while i was hurt- and then proceeded to tell me how infidelity completely threw me off my rocker and that i stopped recognizing myself in the mirror. it almost feels like my neurons and my nervous system are “broken”. i am in multiple modalities of therapy for it. in the past i would go to therapy for rumination, but the therapist would just ruminate with me- lol. now- i know with ocd rumination is classic. after i finished talking which felt like forever, she asked me if she could hug me. she reassured me that i am human- and that it was amazing that i was even willing to work with someone who hurt me so deeply. that of course i messed up. of course i turned crazy. she said she would be surprised if i didn’t with how bad the trauma was. i gave her the example of me the other night. how i showed up to him even after i have been working on myself. she told me to give myself a ton of grace, and told me she trusted that i WILL get there. i know she’s right- because i actually do want to change. She told me that i should get on the next damn flight bc it takes two and we are both human and if we love each other- go at it again. I smiled, but also felt tears well up because i know he is not feeling that way. she turned to me before walking to a pt room “10 years is a long time savannah, its a HUGE deal. do not take the decision lightly”. more permission to feel all sorts of big feelings. she is right. that is why i always prefer in person talks, counseling, full bodied 100% sures rather than reactionary/ hurt/ decisions. I have been “cut out” a lot in the last year. mostly by friends. I genuinely do not do that to others – but some people just make a solid decision to cut you out without good conversations, explanations, rationales or reasoning. they just decide- you are no longer what they want or need in their life/support system. i am not that way- i always work with people and do my damn best. if i love them a lot? no matter what it takes. there is no right or wrong. sometimes it does feel shitty when i feel like i care a lot more than other people do. but not everyone is created equally- that is for damn sure.

i got up from my chair and went into my patients room. This was my second time meeting her- she immediately asked me if i was okay. i laughed- “i am supposed to be asking you that question” i responded. sHe talked to me about her weight gain, and her elevated inflammation markers. She asked me again what was happening with me after going through her labs- and i told her. She looked at me and said. “girl we are meant to be- my man of 17 years i just found out he did it again about 20 minutes ago. i need to leave him when i get home. trust me – you are doing just fine. whatever crazy you were- forgive yourself. if he loves you he will too.” i started laughing. at work- i NEVER expose myself. i am what good ole glennon doyle would call. “my representative self”. i am friendly and kind, loving, but i keep my guard up. melanie cannot believe it when she works with me – she tells me i have multiple personality disorder bc of how well i can play the part. i am not sure that’s a compliment..

i went to my old apt between work and yoga. walked on the treadmill for 1 mile and of course felt my shin flare up. i sat down in the gym and started crying. felt my emotions alllllll the way through. and then i got up, and went to teach yoga. i was unable to be present the majority of the class. mostly filled with my regulars- one of them asked me if i was ok. i am laughing at this point because i just cant hang and everywhere i go i may as well be wearing a sign that says SOS I AM BLEEDING OUT EMOTIONALLY. after class, instead of playing around or hanging out i started cleaning up and apologizing in my voice notes, as that has been a way of releasing what i feel lately. addressing the areas i regret, places i can change, apologies, love letters, whatever it may be. Mostly reflections of where i fucked up. Then, it hit me. the calm. out of nowhere. at 830 pm- for the first time since december 21st…. i felt calm wash over me. For some reason, i just felt myself trust in my body a little bit more. because i am truly sorry. i did fuck up catastrophically. i made a TON of mistakes, bad decisions out of anxiety, and a dysregulated nervous system. I genuinely did not know what i was doing at the time. the space gave me the room to reflect. to actually self examine. this is a GOOD thing. imagine i just had stayed. how much worse it could have gotten. this is the only way it can get better. i am human. i make mistakes. i am realizing how poorly i have treated the person i love the most. and my friends in the process. how much i have lost. and that it is ok. i will actually be ok. i went into the bathroom before leaving the studio. maybe i am not a monster at all. maybe i can be scary to those who have hurt me- or when i feel threatened, but underneath it i am not at all. I am an imperfect person, working on all their shadows. the right friends, partner, and people will find their way into my life and accept me- even the worst parts, as long as i am taking accountability to change them. I dont want to live as a representative self anymore. i want to be the same almsot everywhere i go. there is so much to be grateful for.

as i write this on my new west elm couch that penny is loving to tear up, eating cereal with frozen blueberries for dinner at 10pm on a work night – i am in more of a place of trust than i have been in a long while. i have been in fight or flight for 7 weeks. rejection, pain, walls, more rejection. covid, moves, realizations, shin splints. a linger of light- hope- to crash. its going to be okay. I will land where i am meant to – and i don’t want to force anything. its tough to know what you did wrong and want more than anything to fix it. its hard to put into words what that even feels like- it makes you wish you did while you still had the chance. but- we cannot go back. there are no re-dos. there is only development of self love. acceptance. and gratitude for what chooses you back.

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