Posted by: Marie | December 9, 2010

(462) Speaking of crashes and cats

Post #462
[Private journal entry written on Thursday, June 24, 2010]

I was supposed to go to a networking event this morning, but I was still very tired when my alarm went off. So, I shut off my alarm, put the cat in his cage so he wouldn’t keep waking me up and slept until I woke up just a few minutes ago at 10:30am. I’m in a much better frame of mind than I was last night.

Photo by Martin Chen

I know the expected thing to say would be that thoughts like I had last night scare me and I have to make sure I take care of myself so I don’t get to that place. But, the truth is, it doesn’t scare me because I have thoughts like that quite often . . . although usually less pronounced. I’ve been having them since I was nine, so I’m quite used to it. It doesn’t bother me enough to take steps to protect myself. I’m not excited about staying alive. I can take it or leave it. It just so happens that right now, after more sleep, I’ve slid more towards the middle on the depression-joy scale so I’m no longer actively wishing I would get sick and die.

I also know I have a pattern of crashing into a very dark place right after I experience a joyful place (like the piano lesson), which is something that is very common to survivors. So, I know to not get too freaked out and to just ride it out . . .

I also acknowledge I haven’t been sleeping well for the last week because I started on some allergy medicine. I’m sensitive to medicine anyway . . . and this stuff is making me so wired that I feel like I’ve been drinking two cups of coffee every night right before going to bed.

I have Benadryl, which makes me sleepy, but it doesn’t seem to be handling my allergies to the cat. I’m trying this other stuff. Maybe I’ll have to try a half dose – which would really be a quarter-dose because I’m currently taking a 12-hour dose every 24 hours.

Speaking of the cat . . . the permanent home for him fell through. My housemate gave me the phone numbers of some animals shelters. But, here’s the problem . . .

I’ve become quite attached to this cat – he’s been living with me for more than three months. He seems to have a very gentle and tender soul. He seems to need a lot of attention and assurance.

Sometimes, when he starts running around like a wild banshee at three or four o’clock in the morning, I’ll put him in his kennel so I can sleep. (His kennel is huge . . . larger than a crate that would be used with a Great Dane . . . he has food and water and a litter box in there . . . and shelves for climbing and toys for playing and a hammock for sleeping . . . it’s not much of a hardship for him in there.)

After I wake up, I’ll feed him. But, he is more interested in cuddling with me than in eating. What cat is like that? It’s like he has to make sure he is back in my good graces before he can be concerned with eating. I find myself trying to explain to him why I have to put him in his kennel at o-dark-thirty . . . that it is not because I’m mad at him, but rather because I really need my sleep. Sometimes I have trouble putting together a coherent sentence at that time of morning, especially when I’m trying to not stub my toe in the dark.

I can’t imagine causing him emotional pain by sending him to a shelter or even passing him off to another home . . . what if they don’t cater to his sensitive emotions? What if they don’t let him suck their thumbs? He has already lived in four different places with four different caretakers in his short ten months of life. I don’t want to cause him more trauma . . .

Maybe it is time I give him a permanent home and a permanent name (he’s had several already).

And . . . on a totally different tangent . . .

I’ve been thinking about being triggered in therapy. I don’t think that’s a bad thing when it happens in a safe place and is handled well. Getting triggered is uncomfortable, but it is not devastating. I can live through it. And, every time I’m triggered, assuming the situation is handled well, it takes the sensitivity level down a notch. Then, the next time I’m triggered by the same thing, the reaction is usually less. Or, at least, that’s what I’m finding with Edward. I think that is a good thing.


  1. I guess one way of looking at therapy is that it’s all about getting triggered and getting through it.

    I’ll be interested to hear what you decided to do about the cat.

    • Hey, Evan –

      It does seem illogical that the best way to reduce the power of a trigger is to encourage the triggering . . . do more of something as a way to stop it. But, as you said, that’s how it best works.

      Thanks for all your input!

      – Marie

  2. Poor little cat. I hope he finds a good home.

    • Well, at least at our house, he gets spoiled rotten, LOL!

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