Good morning dear reader.
The engine doth roar again, and the eyes doth pop wide open with ideas on new and interesting things I just have to write…and right now. I can see two things now very clearly;
- When you stop one habit, you pick up another that takes its place and that can, when allowed, drive you harder than the first habit, and,
- My mind doesn’t EVER stop. It just doesn’t
So, once again the cartoon mouse comes out of my cartoon head at 3:00am (a little later this time, it had some mercy this time) and snapped open my eyelids to reveal the “GET” and “UP” words on my cartoon eyeballs and I got the coffee going and got to the keyboard.
My struggle today is going back to work. I work, as I’ve said many times. in a very stressful, aggressive and reactive classroom that contains students with severe disabilities. These are students who can become violent but who can also be loving and wonderful and I love them all dearly. BUt, in this climate now, at this point RIGHT now, I have hit the wall.
I had a mini-breakdown five days ago and went to the ER. I was shaking and had no control over my emotional state and was in the middle of a full blown panic meltdown. I had to tap put for awhile. I’m lucky, especially as I live in the States where health care is generally terrible, that I do have access to a wonderful therapist and psychiatrist who got me some precious time and therapy and new meds (let’s be honest campers, meds are needed sometimes no judgement if you please), and I am making my way nack.
I return to the classroom Tuesday. II have received emails and texts from concerned people encouraging me and I am grateful for it. The point of all of this is one thing: Please understand and embrace the stress and fear teachers have upon them right now….especially now. These people go to work constantly. Not just in the classroom, but from home, from their car, from anywhere they can sometimes find a hot spot just to teach kids both in the classroom and on virtual and many times simultaneously. It’s a hat trick for stress beyond the pale of what many can bear.
I have no virtual as my special kids must have hands on help to learn and I embrace that ad them. But….when that also involves, restraint of violent kids; protecting yourself and others from attack and constant screaming and yelling and throwing objects…..it does cause one to find ways to numb how bad you feel at the end of the day. So I turned to alcohol.
This is not going to turn into an AA meeting. This is truth. I literally waited until 8:00pm every single night after work to pop open what would inevitably be a great deal of wine and block out the wounds, and the stress and the recoil of the day….for night after night for at least 7 months straight. I was in trouble….big time.
Then came the falls, and the blackouts, and turning against my wife and going to school with ravaging hangovers I would have to fight through to survive the day and also be a leader to two classrooms of staff (sometimes more), and the pressure mounted until my body said “STOP IT!!”–and I collapsed.
That’s what leads me here now, To this new mistress. This STREAM of sleeplessness and self examination, and remembrances, and now Short Horror stories (which I’ve always loved and wanted to write).
This has consumed me but in a good way. I’ve been able to deal with a lot of bilge and garbage that contributed to my alcoholism and anxiety and the mess I generally am and in away that connects me with you all. I don’t pull punches here, especially about myself.
So cheers to another day dear reader, wherever you may be,
May life’s winds always carry you
to your life’s intended sea,
May your life be filled with beauty,
May you soul find inner peace,
May you each discover your true place
And the Dreams you want to reach
Where’s my damn coffee?