A Disquiet Mind

You want to know what’s really hard?

Taking first steps. But as I wrote on a Facebook status a while back…

“The first step is always the hardest, though I will admit that the second and third steps sting like a bitch too.”

It does.

Things have not been well in The House of Ren.

Without going into too much detail, I’ve sought out counseling to assist with some issues I have.

Ah, fuck it, let’s go into detail.

I’m seeing a shrink for the following reasons:

I’m angry. ALL. THE. TIME.

I’m sad. ALL. THE. TIME.

I love the world. ALL. THE. TIME.

I hate the world. ALL. THE. TIME.

I like myself. Well, occasionally.

I hate myself. ALL. THE. TIME.

Are we getting the gist yet? This has been me for several years and when I think about it, it’s been that way probably well before my husband was ever on the scene. The problem is that when any little bit of stress comes my way, all of the above escalates to new levels but then… it doesn’t really go back down again. Picture a thermometer if you will. The temperature has risen but the chemistry of the solution has somehow changed and while the temperature goes back down, it never really quite hits zero again.

It stays slightly warmer after each spike.

Being jobless has been the worst thing for me. I managed for the first five months and then I realised as I cleaned out one account of all the savings therein, I was in trouble. Big trouble. Not just for the money side of things but for the stress.

Literally, a volcano waiting to go off.

Well… I exploded – about ten times too many, much to the detriment of my marriage. My husband now sleeps in another room and I pretty much don’t sleep at all.

Oh, major plug for Bourjois Healthy Mix concealer (shade #52 if you please). It hides the circles masquerading as black eyes.

So I made the decision to see the doctor (that awful first step) then see the psychologist (second step – just as fucking painful).

I’d never been to see a psychologist before.

Yes, I’ve had my moments where I’ve called Lifeline to talk to someone (*anyone*) just to let this shit out but it’s a very different experience being in a room with a person you don’t know and telling them everything.


Including why I immediately started laughing as soon as I walked into the office.

Because there IS an actual couch.

And there IS an actual armchair.

And my psychologist looks like a new-age hippy librarian in her patent red Mary Janes and purple stockings and pink cardigan and a top-knot of shaggy blonde hair.

I had to laugh. You would have too.

And yes, she uttered the words, “Tell me about your childhood” which also made me snicker. And then there were tears because my childhood was actually a bit crap.

All of it came out. All of it, all of it, all of it.

I paid $130 to sit on a blue couch and cry for an hour.

Anyway… All that said and done, it was interesting and I think beneficial. It was the first session so I am not really sure. I came out absolutely raw, in any case.

And I get to do it all again next week!

In the interim, I’ve taken up doodling. This weekend leading up to my appointment, I was freaking out a little bit. I needed something, anything, to focus on rather than my deteriorating mental state. So I grabbed my art pens and old sketch book from school and started to doodle.

I literally just went where my brain took me as I refused to think of anything but putting lines on paper. And pretty much suddenly the paper was all there was in the world and the only decision I needed to make was where to make the next line on the page. Just concentrating on putting all the energy I would otherwise be putting into emoting physically into the pen I was using.

Renlish.com - Doodletangle

When I finished and looked at it and thought that’s what my brain looks like right now. That’s a four-hour timelapse image of my mind. I know I will do more of these. I fancy having a series of “brain” pictures like this and then letting people guess what I was feeling as they look at each part of the picture.

If you’ve never tried it, give it a go. It’s cathartic and therapeutic in itself.

7 responses to “A Disquiet Mind”

  1. I have a few of these… mine seem start off almost geometric & regular but spiral into swirly strangeness after I’ve been at it a while. Very cathartic indeed. I hope you find some peace Ren.

    • Thanks Lee.

      I started this one with the big circle. Everything was contained and then WHOOSH! :)

  2. Sympathy or pity will get you nowhere, so you will have none of these from me! I hope that the sun starts to shine brighter for you, soonest, and that one day in the near future I actually get to meet you and hug you and tell you about the amazing person I met online so many years ago and who I have shared bits and pieces of myself with for so long, who makes me laugh and shows me a wonderful (albeit sometimes a bit ranty) view of the world.
    And also, prance around in my underwear with. Right? Right?

  3. love you, and when you’re ready, we’ll get drunk together and bitch and moan and pour into bed and have pancakes in the morning.
    You are an amazing wonderful woman – i know you don’t feel it right now but you are – even while you’re this lost.
    So proud of you for seeking help. So so proud.

  4. That first step of actually going to see someone is really hard…good on you for having the courage to do it. And that’s an amazing doodle!!! Wish I could doodle like that…

  5. As the Other Erin says, you are an amazing person, I may not have met you in the real, however I admire the person who comes across the screen, you are such a special one. Well done you feel you need help, you are seeking it, best wishes with the journey, keep on laughing it always helps… I have been on the planet for awhiles life has a way of working out.
    Much love and support, Kerrie

  6. As someone who has been there good on you for seeking help. As others have said, the decision to get help is the hardest and not all those that should seek help do.

    I haven’t got much else to say other then hang in there girl.

    Awesome doodle, I haven’t free doddled in years it is a good exercise though. (that could be a bit dirty….)