Things we never got

  1. I would definitely have been yelled at and put down for not writing that paper sooner. No one would have been there to help me and certainly not with their arm around my shoulder, whispering words of encouragement. That almost makes me laugh. Like who really behaves that way? Yet I know that it does exist. Somewhere.

  2. I know it's not the same thing, but bird by bird is one of the things I've trained myself to say when I'm overwhelmed. It makes me feel hopeful and proud, because pretty much everyone I grew up with repeated what their parents told them and found at least a little bit of comfort in that. And I had to learn from scratch how to do that for myself. I taught myself affirmations and soothing poems, know them by heart now, and it actually works.

  3. When I had a paper due the next day, I used to hunker down in front of the computer with my notebooks, textbooks and journal articles and work past midnight until it was done. Then I'd get up early the next morning, re-read the entire thing, edit and prepare for submission. I loved reading and studying, and I always felt like I was in my element when I was working on a project. It was like I was in a bubble, focused purely on executing the task at hand to the best of my abilities. (I'm kind of still like that now, to be honest.)

  4. The procrastination I believe we do is because often times our minds were the only things around we could continually rely on for support, disassociation, survival. Keep doing the next best thing and remember it’s okay to ask for help (from coworkers, friends, family you don’t cut off). Naps, rest days, vacations, escaping into a book, an album, a movie, a tv show, a meditation all are needed. My parents treated me like their maid so I never had a day off. I started working at six helping clean houses and offices with my mother then sweeping the machine shop, answering phones, invoices for my dad and any other thing I could to to either help them make money (unpaid child labor for my mother at her retail store job) and making crafts to sell on the side of the road during holiday breaks. Homework could be done last minute before the teacher calls for me to turn it in so of course it can wait until I’m not exhausted to do. Now I’m in emdr therapy and don’t know how to relax so much so my shoulder and neck will lock up tight. We went on a vacation years ago for the first time in awhile without an abuser and a panic attack had me on the floor. Bird by bird though it’s getting better.

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