It has been another delightful Autumn day here in the Huon Valley. My dogs and I slept so well. Lights were off late, 23:30 better than I expected. I made a huge effort to get to bed last night.
I have showered today, having been working in the garden moving bark and mulched tree branches. Putting some lovely compost about some plants that flower and grow during our cool temperate winters.
I even spent a bit of time in my kitchen. I became a hoarder in the darkest period of time after my breakdown. My home has had periods of being OK since then. Though most of the time it is really bad especially the kitchen and living areas. I have written about this in another post.
Today I began to clean some of my stove top. It has been so revolting and it really has. I scrapped all the crud off it, and used hot water with some bleach in it. It was layers of stuff. I only did part of it. Yet it really made me feel good. Then ashamed. I felt the somatic symptoms rising. The knowing how revolting it was. How have I allowed it to be like this for so long. The answer is I have been ill.
Some where in my brain, and emotions overwhelmed, anxiety, fear, shame,and lots of guilt. Words from my past about how our home should look like this and everything needed to be perfect, and how cleaning should be done and how I was a filthy disgusting pig echo around my head as I fight myself. I was just not able to cope with it at all just basically caused me to disconnect with the concept of anything about the house.
I can work in the garden as freely and for as long as I want. There were no gardens when I was growing up. My garden is mine. Nothing in my head about how it should be. No somatic issues when I am in my garden. My garden is not a show garden, it is a happy and warm welcoming place. A sanctuary for wildlife, and me. Unlike the house!
The need to look neat clean and tidy always, the house so sparkling that even our bedrooms were meant to be on show at all times. The fights as a teenager ending in beatings and verbal barrages because my room was messy, and why could the door not just be shut! Why did it always have to be open! Who were we out to impress? Perfect house, perfect children. Oh I certainly did not fit that mould. The beatings and the verbal barrages that would come my way small child, teenanger, even as an adult, even when my partner died. Judgements were made on how the house looked and what would people think?
Yet I understand some of the reasons why the house has become what it has. Note it is a house…not a home.
It became a fortress, a safe place to barricade the rest of the world out. I had control of that. Whilst the rest of my life I was loosing control of everything else it seemed. Work, for a period finances, my brain, my emotions, my feelings, everything was slipping out of my control.
So today I cleaned a part of my stove. Their are jars and pots, plates, and cups piled about, There is crap all over the lovely timber floor. I hate it, I see it, and I want it gone. Today I cleaned a part of my stove. It is shiny and sparkling. It makes me smile, and it makes me more sad, and ashamed embarrassed at the rest.
Tomorrow I will wash up. In my sink that has no real spout, just a leaking copper pipe that swooshes out into the sink. (its more than many people have). I can not have a plumber in to fix it until I have cleared up and cleaned up more. Its been like this for a long time, it will get done eventually.
Yet even this idea getting a plumber, letting him/her inside my house, seeing how it is. That is bad enough.
I have really really serious trust issues. Regarding people coming into my house. Several trust issues have occurred that have made me like this. The last was a year or so ago. I had a leak into the kitchen from an exterior upstairs doorway.
The wood had rotted. I tried filling it, not fully stopped. So this man comes and says he can fix it. I let him in, the house was not as bad as it is today. I apologised, and explained my illness and hoarding. (bedroom upstairs is clean and tidy)So he was working up there. To cut the story short he did not fix it. He came back three times, and still had not fixed the leak. The leak is now worse.
I have to have a tarp over the door and deck area upstairs when it rains.
So having a plumber come into my house, into the kitchen( the worst area of the house) where two leaks are. Is a huge HUGE issue for me. I know that for some reason, my adult self is not in the management chair here. I know that my small me is. The rebellious small me, that says FU to how things should be! FU to people accepting me on how I look, live ect. FU to being in control of clean and tidy. Spotless and for the adult me often alphabetised and colour organised. Every thing labelled, and yes a bit OCD. For the small me it is all too much! Actually for the adult me it is too. Yet when I look with I guess mindfully and non judgmentally. It is messy and crappy dirty and yuck. Yet it is not as bad as or as big a mess as it seems. The small me just throws my hands up and says nah…it is too hard, and shuts down.
So today I cleaned a part of my stove. It is shiny and I can see it when I come down the stairs. I feel happy seeing it.
My aim by writing is similar to establishing my routine which has been so beneficial to me sleep, walk, eat healthier. To write about the hording and aim for one small area to be undertaken each week. (start small ) I then feel responsible to ensure that for my own benefit and concept of moving forward be committed. Be honest and say if I have achieved the small area. For the week or not.
So my aim this week until next Monday will be to keep my stove top clean and to wash up everything in my sink area and put them away in the cupboards.
My life with CPTSD is complex, yet I try to live a very simple life. I look about and gain so much pleasure now from all about me. Today listening to the birds in the birdbath near where I was working. Seeing a butterfly landing on the wall flowers. A frog hop when I disturbed his spot. The huge worm that a Kookaburra swooped down, grabbed in its beak and had for a meal.
It has taken me a long time to be where I am now. I just want to keep moving forward. No matter how small as long as it is always forward.
Blessings to you all Tazzie.
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