{Confessions Of An Exhausted Mother}

I’m burnt out. Matthew and I both are.


Most days I roll by without people knowing what goes on behind closed doors in our little world.

Keira has been on emergency suspension for 6 days now from school.

Her mood and aggression has been an extremely difficult task for Matthew and I to tame.

He’s been to work 2 days in the last two weeks.

A couple of his fellow employees contributed shared leave hours to help keep a portion of his salary intact.

Even though we refinanced the house and have less bills, the half salary is going to make things rough. 

Intermittent FMLA means exactly what it states. 

He stays home intermittently throughout the following year so as to help with emotional instabilities with Keira, or if one of us needs to remove Guy Danger from the home like I had yesterday to protect him from seeing/hearing the anger his sister has.

Suicide awareness is very apparent now at the tender age of barely 9.

I can no longer allow Keira to be in the back yard alone without supervision when she is in a negative state of mind.

Two days ago, she attempted to climb our white tree in the back yard from a chair.

When prompted with my question as to why she was climbing; her response,

“I want to climb high and jump off so I can snap my neck and be dead!”

We have always had a problem with Keira’s obsession with television/electronics.

Even she acknowledges it is a massive trigger for her, but like any heroine addict, once they get a small taste of it or even hear the word,
The obsession to have it begins.
I spent the better part of 5.5 hours with Matt yesterday; hearing Keira scream non stop threatening suicide, threatening to kill me, desperately attempting to say anything to get either of us to cave and allow her to have whatever she needs.

Now here’s the twist..

When Keira goes from manipulative tv Keira- to just plain irrational GONE Keira, there is zero reasoning, attempts to comfort her,
Physical relaxation or empathy that will let this child be at ease.

She will shriek for hours on ends, wallowing in self hate. 

If you try to walk near her she screams in severe terror; eyes scrunched shut wailing out we are going to kill her repetitively.

She also has a gift of making personal attacks against my physical features to break me down.

While I do not need to divulge the details of those, I will say, it is the equivalent of the worse bully bitch you had to fight in high school ( if you had experienced that at all)

She has an uncanny way to ooze under my skin and break me down. 
We both have taken a ‘no talk’ approach to her picking fights.

For some reason, the positive attention is not enough for Keira anymore and she has switched to deliberately attempting to make us frustrated or to pick fights by bringing up irrelevant subjects.

When Matthew is home with me, I have the chance to keep my armor intact by walking away for a moment and cleansing my mind with some calm soothing breaths.
That is just one thing that has been bothering Keira lately.

Electronics have always been something like a friend to her.

She prefers to live in the stories created through any shows than to live in her own realities.

As I watch Keira grow and see her mental state evolve, I experience flash backs of my childhood which help me empathize with her.

As traumatizing as they may be at times, I can attempt to at least tell her, ‘you’re not alone Keira.’

When I asked her why she was so angry all the time, my worst fear came alive in four small words,
“Because I hate myself.”

That right there, is how I started to feel about me at the age of 9.

Keira may be a Borderline along with massive sensory integration issues and perhaps some other symptoms.

Dr. Ford has hinted in the past that she may have symptoms of BPD. 

She also firmly believes most mental illnesses reside in genetics.

Needless to say, if she is a Borderline, it will not be an easy task. 

*Chuckles*
it hasn’t been the last 5 years. 
But we stand strong together, Matt and I, ready to keep fighting and persevering through the darkness of it all.

Word vomit was strong today but I’m hoping that after writing this, it may help keep my mental clarity strong and resilient for today’s battles.

She goes back to school tomorrow.
We’ve never cared the label of Keira’s illness, but we DO care about finding the right path to leading her down to success.
As always, take care.

(HIS SIDE) I’m still here

      For anybody that is wondering I am indeed still here. 

  
 When I last wrote to you i was having a hard time finding a way to remain emotional but still handle Ashleys emotional swings. For those of you wondering what i have been talking about and I don’t know how I do this, but I can take all emotion out of things and replace it with logic and reason. The result of this is a cold but steady person and for many years this was beneficial to Ashley, but it is no way to live

     It has been a couple months now and i feel that with a little practice, patience and good communication i have found a happy medium. It is still overwhelming at times especially with our daughter’s condition getting worse, but I feel that I am becoming a better husband and father. Till next time when ever that is remember you are not alone.

Scarlet My Dear Old Friend… We Meet Again.

Disconcerting. 

  
This image may appear that way to those who do not yet fully understand me.

I gave in. 
I had to see the trails of red pour against my decrepit face.

It’s truly magnificent. 
I see my inner beauty through my eyes when I look at my reflection after mutilating.

I can assure you, I speak in the most sound mind right now.

Why am I choosing to expose this to you all?

I need to. 

I need to show the world for those who cannot yet do so.

For those who fear judgement from their family, and those who care about them most.
When all they’ve ever wanted is to be accepted, loved, and nurtured for who they really are.

I have no shame anymore.

Take it or leave it, this is me.

It does not contradict how I take care of others.

I punish myself and myself alone.

I can now go about my day functioning with a semi wise mind.

But what hurts me the most, is this..

How much longer do I hide the truth (of how I got hurt) to my sweet little girl?

The time is coming near for that conversation, but I have a strong feeling that she already knows the answer.

Stay Strong.

{ HIS SIDE } My Wife The Borderline

  Before I go any further I would like to let you know that I am dyslexic and apologize for the bad punctuation and run on sentences just bear with me.

Now that I have told you a little bit about how we met I will talk about everyday life.
We thought for the longest time that Ashley was Bipolar.
We went to doctors, therapist and psychologist never seaming to really make any progress.
We tried lots of different medications but none of them could stop the self destructive behavior

The thing I loved most about Ashley was also the hardest thing to live with.
That fiery free spirit took us on some great adventures and down some dark paths. It did not take long for me to figure out that I would always be in a shit storm of emotions, but it did not matter to me.
Through all the drinking, spending sprees, promiscuity and rebellion of any kind, all though I couldn’t understand it.

I could see when this was happening it wasn’t her.

I discovered many years ago that my emotions fueled her mood swings so I began to regulate around her and it helped. The real problems started a couple of years ago because I had turned my feelings off so much that they stayed off.
I became a miserable person to be around , I still loved Ashley very much but had basically forgot how to show it.
I was starting to lose friends. I didn’t know how to have fun anymore my primary focus was on finances.

With this lackluster approach to life the only use I was to Ashley was to be her therapists, she would unload all her problems on me and then go have fun with someone else.

Looking back on this now I completely understand her actions but then it just made me even more bitter.

Now im sure you can figure out this is a condensed version of the story that took place over several years.

During all this time many great things have happened our daughter Keira Noel and son Guy Danger were born.

After 9 years Ashley finally agreed to marry me, so on May 4th of 2015 it finally happend on Star Wars day for all the nerds out there.
I would like to tell you that its all going to be great from now on but because of Ashleys BPD even though we are married she will always think that she is to much emotional stress and that I want to leave her. I am going to assume that if you are reading this you have read Ashleys blog and are possibly wondering what kind of person would voluntarily go through this?
Well let me tell you most of it is love and devotion the other part is my personality fits her very well.

For example we have a open relationship or polyamorous what ever you want to call it this is one of those things that the outside world views as dysfunctional but I can promise you it is quite the opposite.
With a monogamous relationship there is one rule I think most of you know what that is, with us there is way more trust and rules that have to be applied and everybody in this type of relationship has different rules that work for them.

I’m not going to get into that because I dont want to write that much. As I said earlier Im assuming you read Ashleys blog posts and it says she had a affair and Im sure you are wondering how a couple that has a open marriage can have a affair…
well its our main rule we do not see the same person repeatedly because of emotional attachment and rule 2 it does not happen in our home.
Ashley broke these rules thus created an affair.
This lifestyle requires a lot of work and is not for everyone like I said its my personality.
One of my traits is I dont feel jealousy. Never have.
And second we both believe sexual health is the heart of a good relationship.
Now personally I believe that one person can not fulfill all sexual desires of another.
I think most people settle and thats fine for them not for us.
I thank you for reading this far as I said before I am dyslexic and it is difficult for me to put this out in word form but I will continue to write, maybe my story can help someone who’s loved one suffers from BPD your not alone.
If you are going through a similar situation, comment and if I have gone through something similar i will share that part of my story. I want to make it clear i will not offer advice i can only share my story till next time stay strong.

17 Years A Fighter

Ive kept this letter for the last 17 years.
For years I’ve questioned myself as to WHY I had.
Recent events with my daughter have proved that I’ve kept this treasured relic as proof.
Physical evidence that no matter how horrific life has been at times through the distorted lens which my eyes posess, I’ve come to accept these few things-
The world may try to push me down.
I have (and always will) allowed it to.

 

But in then end I know this letter proves to me that I have fought to be true to myself my entire life.
Courage has been the weakest trait of mine.
Out of general respect and societies expectations of someone like me, I’ve come to the conclusion that it was never comfortable for me to speak up against others for myself.
My husband has shown me courage under Fire through his life and with me the last 9 years battling my mental illness.
You can watch me,
You can fight to take away the things that I love most,
But I am realizing that I am beautiful and pure.
Qualities most people desperately wish to possess.
And I know in my heart, I am the best mother my children could ask for.
I will never lie about who I am. 
If I had at any point, what sort of example would I be setting for my daughter and the people who have watched me for the last 5 months exposing every intimate aspect of my life on the Internet (the good, the bad, and the downright disturbingly ugly?)
People choose to see what they only want to see.     
I am NOT my illness.

#perspective #erasethestigma 

 

A Letter To My Gym

 
 Hello,
You may not know me but my name is Ashley Johnson.
I’ve been attending your facilities since March of this year.
My husband and I thoroughly enjoy going on a daily basis.
The staff is very friendly and the gym patrons are nothing but polite and courteous.
I had two free 30 min sessions with G**** originally.
My goals were to administer pinch testing, monitor % body fat, and measurements.
I never set a goal for weight loss. 
See, most people go to the gym to lose weight and be fit.
I used your facilities every day to escape from the world.
I suffer from Borderline Personality.
I have social anxiety.
For the first nearly two months I walked in for cardio on an elliptical, no eye contact with anyone- hair down with a cap pulled low and ear buds blasting rock music.
To those who have seen me there the last 6 weeks…
I find more often than not that I walk in with no cap.
I don’t put my earbuds in until I start to lift.
People are starting to smile at me, and I’m smiling back.
My original intentions to everyone was to compete in a naturals competition.
That has since changed.
My safety and escape was compromised last night when I attended a training session with J***.
J*** is a very proud man. I can see that.
When he spoke to my husband and I about why we were there for him I stated G***** was administering pinch tests for me.
It was a number I just went off of to see progress for myself.
I allowed this man to distort my views on how I had been exercising and living my life in general to appease his ego.
Let me get this straight, I am a very passive person. People such as J*** who have only seen success in his life prey (unintentionally) on those who are less than adequate at being a human being.
As our session progressed far past the 30 minute mark and my husband already at the childcare tending to my fussy child, he proceeded to oil his well groomed ego by showing me workouts and explaining that if I TRIED like most people do not here, then I would see success.
Open mindedness is a key to life in my opinion.
I would have loved to have listened to him.
But instead of absorbing what he so tenaciously offered during a 1.5 hour (free 30 min mind you) session- he would not let me leave.
After many attempts at explaining that my child has a hard time in the daycare and Matthew (my husband) is exhausted from working a 15 hour day- I finally broke away once he felt on his mind perhaps, that he had hooked me into altering my entire workouts to his perception.
By the time I said please may we walk to the front while you finish your writing, he said to me
You realize I spent more time with you than your 30 minutes? I did this as a favor. If you block your husbands 30 minutes along with yours I’ll be able to train you right.
Eagerness to succeed is a great quality to have.
But it is overshadowed by people like J*** who prey on the weak. 
I won’t lie when I say that I was mortified I wasted 2 hours of my evening and created a cesspool of anger between my husband and I. 
I felt worthless and cried hard for hours. 
But I allowed him to do that.
In the end (my husband) was angry that a man decided what we had been doing the last 3 months of our lives wasn’t good enough.
Matthews after photo I showed him perplexed Jeff. When he asked who it was I stated Matthew. He then looked appalled as though I were lying and threw a rebuttal statement to ratify his confusion
“When was it taken?”
4 days ago.
It shouldn’t have mattered.
I am not asking that you pursue disciplinary action. It is not my right to tell you how to staff your facilities.
But I allowed this man to break me. 
Last night I said I never wanted to step foot inside there again because I couldn’t go there to be free.
I was now expected to think and to perfect instead of expressing the negativity.
There are many days I cry through workouts.
I realize I look crazy to people but in the end you’re all just strangers to me just as I am to you. (A point of view I’m still attempting to master)
I worry about those other gym patrons who are sucked into his narrow minded point of views. 
Bragging about being 6.5% body fat in your prime and arguing with other professionals who tell you otherwise is unappealing to me by all standards.
I do not care about a naturals competition. 
Quite honestly it is a great eye opener to that world (of fitness gurus) who care only about themselves and enjoy smashing others to the ground as sport.) However, there are also MANY builders who are compassionate and kind to others. I’ve seen them. They follow me, encourage me. See me for who I am. 
Sure he has done great things in his life with his body. I do not doubt that. 
But ask yourself this…
Would he have been as cocky and condescending had he started out obese like ourselves?
Food for thought.
Take care.

I See You

Never in my wildest dreams did I think I would be in this situation again.
For the second time in my life, Child Protective Services has an active investigation open against me.
I’m sure most of you outsiders are shaking your head in confusion and shock at the same time.
I will tell you now what I have been telling medical professionals and the world for the last 5 years.
I have never lied about who I am.

Even when my demons were consuming the better parts of me.
As decrepit as my stability was for years, I never once faltered to say I was a pathetic human being.
Because that is exactly what I was.
Notice the past tense?
Please read forward and allow me to elaborate on some key things which have affected my views on my mental stability, my self worth, and my negativities and animosity towards the world.

I’ve been having an intense war within my mind.
The mood swings aggressively change by the hour now.

Matthew and I have decided we cannot anticipate which persona I will embody.

By removing the metaphorical ‘mask’ off my face that I have been wearing my entire life, (even in my childhood) it has literally opened Pandora’s Box.
I have had zero control over this unstoppable force. It has become an intense purging of repressed conscious/subconscious emotions.
I’d like to think that it will mellow out after a few weeks. But I refuse to set expectations of myself or others any more.
Expectations are simple. But when not met, they can crumble a person’s strengths and any will to keep moving forward.
Take this for example.
I love Finding Nemo. It is a classic animated movie loved by multiple generations.
I relate to Dori.

Her simple three word sentence she chants to Marlin as he is literally having a mental breakdown in the carcass of the ocean has had an impact on us worldwide.
”Just Keep Swimming.”
Do not read into it. Do not try to find a deeper meaning to the small yet significant sentence.
She popped into my head this morning after I had a life altering epiphone.
Call it petty and narcissistic, but I am fucking amazing.
I literally have SEEN the life I’ve lived so far and I am only 28 years old.
I have waged through more emotional combat than the average person most likely has within the first 30 years of their life. (Again, narcissism runs deep within a Borderline.)
I have hurt others.

I assaulted my marriage with emotional adultery.
I have battled self medicating.
I am an alcoholic.
I am an addict by all means to temptive impulsivities.

I’ve destroyed finances.
Crumbled family ties.

And was not there for my daughter the first few years of her life.
But before I counteract this lengthy list of proven negative qualities about myself, I will state that without these; I wouldn’t have been able to transform into who I am at this very moment.
Brick needs mortar. A mighty and intimidating fortress can be built to shield against the enemy. The walls could tower 20 feet high and appear impenetrable. Yet all it takes is a small hit in the wall to destroy the fortress.

“For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.”{Newtons Third Law}

This means that for every force, there is a reaction force that is equal in size but opposite in direction.
Let me ask you this. If I was an unstoppable force plowing over anything and everything to satisfy my selfish indulgences, why the hell wouldn’t there be a force equal to that strength waiting for me at some point?
The equivalent and opposing reaction(s) have impaled me in the gut multiple times throughout the years.
I have broken myself.
I have made attempts to rebuild.
But never once in the past did I actually affirm in my mind and soul that I BELIEVED I could do so.
Not until now.

Let me tell you what I saw this morning when I woke up.
I saw the same woman I’ve stared at in the mirror my entire life.
But I finally can SEE who I really am.
Yes I have fucked up royally beyond forgiveness too many times in life. I hold myself accountable for each action.
But because of that ownership, I’ve allowed myself to release that vendetta against the good person within. It was so far overshadowed by the darkness that I refused to open my eyes to see the true beauty and talents which I possess.
I have a gift with words. I know I have a way of writing which forces people to feel. Even if it is uncomfortable. It is nevertheless, a feeling.

I can paint.
I’ve written music.
Taught myself to play the guitar at the age of 13.
I have an impeccable way of photographing humans in their rawest forms. This had become one of my more favored art forms which took longer to convince myself to sabotage simply because it involved giving back to to others.
I have a stunning singing voice.
I have the ability to read people’s emotions even when they think they’ve had the world fooled.
I am an incredible mother.
I cannot make up for the years I neglected Keira emotionally. It just isn’t possible.
I used to view that as a severe regret which fueled a self pity so wretched, it was halting me from moving forward with myself.
With Self Love.
With Self Nurturing.
Keira and Guy are my sole purpose to prove to myself that I am better than my weaknesses.
I am stronger than who I used to be.
And I choose to change now.
But you see, I’ve realized I made that decision over two years ago.

Just like my fitness transformation within the last 3 months of our lives with my husband, you see results and it drives you to want more.
It becomes an obsession.
A lifestyle.
Success and self pride are two things I believe every person desires.
And I can fucking guarantee you that once you free yourself of all the bull shit excuses you’ve used against yourself throughout the years, there is literally nothing that can stop you.

This doesn’t just go for physical health and fitness.

I already know you understand that I speak on a holistic level.
Mind, Body, and Soul.
It is the dawn of a new era. I am not afraid. For I have nothing to hide.
I will be calling CPS this morning to follow up from their voicemail last night. I will most likely have an interview at the house like before.

I am confident that this will dissolve as quickly as it was procured.

May I ask you this last question?

How will you view your life, and the life of others after seeing through the eyes of another?

#perspective

Stay Classy.

The Relentless General

  
How do you even begin to explain to the world that your 7 year old daughter wants to die?

I wish with all my heart this was not the topic I’d be writing about today. Irregardless, I have been sheltering the subject for quite some time. 

For I have refused to accept that exact opening question.

My beautiful child is more like me than I could have ever imagined…

As a parent, you take pride in such a sentence. ”My child wants to grow up to be like me.” I strongly believe that every person wishes their child(ren) would profess that desire at SOME point in their lives.

It is the exact opposite for me.

 I’ve been praying her entire life that she would never end up like me. Fate has proven me sorely wrong. 

My traits are manifesting out into reality through her beautiful little mind so much, that I am having enormous emotional triggers which are molesting any capabilities I have to function as a mother let alone, human being.

One does not have to be mentally ill to understand a trigger. If you’re not familiar, I will lay out a basic definition that I pulled from the internet.

{A trigger is something that sets off a memory tape or flashback transporting the person back to the event of his/her original trauma.}

Place yourself metaphorically in my shoes for a moment. 

A woman nearly 29 years old with a lifetime of suffering from a mental illness. To this day I am not confident with the proper diagnoses. (That I will touch base later.) 

As a parent, you will do whatever means necessary to protect your child.

A bully at school, for example, can be tamed or lessen the brutality of the attacks by being a proactive parent and speaking up to the school. It is not an easy thing to do by any means. Especially when you very well know that your good intentions could have adverse affects on improving the situation.

How can you protect your child from themselves? How can you possibly help them when they themselves, do not understand the demons they are fighting?

I would like to talk about my husband today.

He is a brave man.

He is waging against a war from the sidelines. 

He is the wounded general. Legs crippled by a mortor in the dawn of the fight.

Incapable of walking, he commands his troops to move forward. Never once faltering with the strength in instruction. Once given orders, the troops thunder Inward blind. Not able to anticipate what will come of them.

Once out of sight, the General becomes weak. Vulnerable. He knows very well that his soldiers may not see him with their eyes, but he can view the entire field of carnage from atop the desolate hillside from wence they came.

It is a weakness which is not procured from physical implications, but emotional instability. For the General knows damn well he cannot be next to his soldiers in the heat of battle. 

He is helpless viewing each ravage blow. Every carnal laceration that grazes the cadets.

Anticipating that the enemy has the potential of winning grants the general adjudication for what he decides to do next.

If his battalion is no more. 

If they lay waste upon the earth below him,

He will take his life.

To the enemy it is a grand victory. But their views on the real winner are distorted by the blatant ovbvious.

For the General absolves his cadets defeat the moment his pulse ceases to beat thanks to the tender squeeze of his faithful alloy trigger.

Back atop the hillside, he comes to and sees his battalion beside him, waiting orders. 

The dream he had procured in mere seconds is now an outlying back up plan. He has returned to the realm of the real world. 

And he is prepared to run down the hillside next to his troops. 

Till the very end. 

But that susceptability to weakness will always haunt him. 

And like any brave warrior, the General will never show fear in front of his company.

The Battle Within

My chest is screaming.
The anxiety is beginning to build within my cavernous walls.
I fucked up. I fucked up bad.
Why do you ask?
Because I decided to show my family who I really am yesterday on social media…
And that frightens me more than anything.
I very carefully maintained a 27 month streak without a self mutilating episode.
Yesterday I cut my face. But you have to understand, I’ve always cut my face.
As a teenager, it was the typical relief with my forearm and/or thigh. That was when I was a silent sufferer. I did not know what was wrong with me, however, even at the age of nine, I knew that something was severely different between myself and the typical nine year old.
Around the age of 17, I began hitting my face. Then I felt an uncontrollable force to ‘one up’ my abuse and started cutting my face.
It was the beginning of a marriage to pain. Her partner… relief. After my first experience, I was certain, this was for life. I was hooked on that sick and twisted purging of emotions. And knew right away it would never subside.

  

The Fitness Junkie

 In the beginning of March, my husband Matthew decided he was going to train to become a stronger, faster predator for hunting. 
He had obtained a bow. Archery is new to him; his entire life was rifle large game. 
It has been eight years since the last time he set foot into the woods to hunt. 
I feel I am the cause of that. For after we met, we began building a family.  
Both of us came from slightly dysfunctional homes (but who doesn’t have that).  
As a parent, you vow to raise your offspring better than your parents had you- so that you may prevent any repeats of negative memories which as an adult currently, (we try) very hard to suppress. (Easy parents, we still love the crap out of you.) It is a natural instinct. A thirst to prove yourself.  
For those who are not yet or do not want to have children, it may be a different path but it’s all the same to me…. 
We as human beings CRAVE success. If you’re a six figure entrepreneur, or a simpleton like me who dreamt of being a stay at home mother… 
bottom line is- We all want it. We all go about achieving it differently. 
Back to Matthew. He impressed me intensely with his drive and commitment to changing not only his diet, but committed to heavy exercise on a daily basis.  
I encouraged him to let me purchase a gym membership for him.  
He has not faltered a day attending. 
On March 19th, 2015 I decided to listen to Matthew and join the gym as well. 
He discussed the importance of sacrifice for gain. We both agreed that I would go to the gym in the evenings after he came home from work, so that the children could stay at home and I wouldn’t have to worry about being cut short a workout. (Let’s face it, my son is a total mamas boy.) 
I have missed three days in the last 35. I have lost only 8lbs but I am certain I have also gained quite a bit in muscle. 
I depend on the gym. I live for the gym. Seeing my body transform because I worked hard to do it is something that I am still in shock over to this day. 
My lungs are stronger. My legs are stronger. My heart rate is lower each time I get up for cardio. I am understanding the importance of balancing life. Specifically- mental health and physical health. 
They most certainly go hand in hand. (At least for me they do.) cardio and free weights are my Klonapen and Lamictal. Cardio releases the vice squeezing against my chest while lifting balances and nurtures my emotional stability.  
There are physical benefits to exercise. I am no Dr. But it’s easy to explain endorphins and how they affect our minds and bodies. 
Similar to exercise, endorphins released during a tattoo session are both pleasurable and rewarding.  
I have days where I do not want to go. I refuse multiple times in my head and try to convince myself otherwise. But then I call bull shit on me. 
I cart my ass down there and if I cry guess what… I’m on that eliptical fucking crying and dancing to heavy metal.  
I will not falter. 
I am not trying to lead as an example. I am merely showing where I have ended up, who I have become and who I so desperately want to be. (I have yet to figure that out.) 
So for now, I will continue to push myself. Harder, faster, and stronger everyday.  
And no one will get in my way. 
GET SOME.