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I am...a New Yorker
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Thursday, August 1, 2002
Coping
Sidebar

Working...
Quietly, in peace.

Commuting...
By crosstown and uptown buses this morning. I much prefer that to being packed into the subway and going through both Times Square and Grand Central everyday. It wasn't so bad at my last job, because I worked at 8:30 and at 9:30, but now that I work right at 9, it's crazy.

Surprising...
My telephone extension is the same as at the last job.

Seeing...
White guys in suits and handcuffs (Enron/WorldCom). I never thought I'd see the day. Somebody call Michael Moore.

Hating...
When they announce on the news that a "beautiful, young woman" was murdered. Is it more tragic if someone is beautiful and young? Even us ugly and old women have friends and family who love us.

Eating...
Chocolate and peanut butter & jelly frozen yogurt. Three tastes that taste great together. Hooray Tasti-D-Lite!

Horoscoping...
You see the world behind the world, and also the worlds that are yet to be. Virgo may be too farseeing and abstract for the average person. Those on your wavelength find you to be a most entertaining dinner companion.

Your method is your art. Some would call this anal, while others would call it brilliant. At the very least, see whether it's time for your performance review. People go to school to learn what comes so naturally to you.

Spotting...
Scott Wolf.

Seeing...
Another guy with a wet towel on his head.

Staying...
In NY?

I am...in therapy. I think I've finally found someone I can trust. I've had a few false starts over the years.

One wanted to focus on why I am "closed to men," which strikes me as an absurd question to me even now. I was 21 and hadn't yet dated, so I retorted by asking why men were closed to me. I needed to talk about the abuse and he only wanted to talk about why I didn't greet him on campus. I wasn't ignoring him intentionally, I just have a tendancy to be in my own world when I'm walking around, especially racing from one side of campus to another.

I had one I really liked in San Francisco, with the balance between caring and insightful that I need. Unfortunately, my insurance at the time only covered 4 visits. As she said, "Parent stuff is big." I don't know what the insurance company thought could be accomplished in 4 visits, it's not enough for anything.

Finally, two years ago, I started to see another doctor regularly. Oddly enough, I think it's one of the reasons I was laid off from the record company. I had all of these appointments and they thought I was job hunting. She was OK, but she kept asking, "So, what do you want from me?" I thought that was a weird question for a psychiatrist to ask. I mean, the whole reason you go is to have someone listen to your problems and, one hopes, guide you toward breakthroughs.

Anyway, so now it begins. A false start, however, since my therapist goes on vacation until the end of the month. My next appointment is the day after my birthday. July started out on a pretty low note, but I've managed to accomplish a lot.

All but one of my student loans have been rehabilitated (the last one is still getting processed), I've applied and sent transcripts to all the schools I'm considering and now the therapy. I only wish I'd made a point of going while I was working -- I would've left that miserable job sooner, I'm sure. But I kept blaming myself -- if I just tried harder, had a better attitude (hard to do when you're getting chewed out from every direction), was more organized, etc.

Today I got a ton of filing done. Did I try harder than at my last job? No, but there weren't 6 emails awaiting answers, 5 projects late, 4 meetings pending, 3 phone lines ringing, 2 people screaming and 1 boss freaking out at the time. My boss is a rabbi and seems as mellow as can be. My new coworkers joke (though not at the expense of myself or others) and laugh and offer assistance. It's refreshing. Hell, maybe I've picked a winner this time.

At any rate, I am looking forward to finally coming to terms with my past. I've been discouraged to hear people say abuse survivors should "just get over it." I tried that, but you have to deal with it before you can move on.

I think the most insideous thing about the impact of abuse is that it is so deeply rooted that I just don't know what's appropriate most of the time. It affects everything you do, whether you realize it or not. Granted, one of the upshots is you learn to survive just about everything.

It's this hidden holocaust, this time bomb within. You don't know whether it will strike or when or how or why. Sometimes you know it's the cause, while at other times it is your stealth guide to the downward spiral, a one-way ticket to the abyss.

[Next entry: "Living Out Loud"]
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