Court was uneventful, thanks.
I do think the drumming is good therapy. When I do it at church (whether practice or during service), it is fun and I am just concerned with playing, and when I sing along, it helps. They keep threatening to put a headset mic on me, but I don't want to have to worry about singing the right thing or the right part when I'm drumming. I find I am more able to take in the praise songs and worship more when I am just singing along while I play, without anyone except the people up there hearing me. And it's more relaxing than singing (although it can be frustrating sometimes when C gets frustrated), because I just took it up a year ago, and had never even sat at a drumset before then, so I don't have high expectations of myself, and I feel like it's pretty good that I was able to play in church after only 2 months of playing, and I am getting better and better. At home, it's good because if I am feeling angry or wound up, I can just put music on loud and bang the heck out of the drums. And if it's the middle of the night, I have an electronic set I can run through headphones, so .... Always thought it would be so cool to play the drums, and although it may not be quite as cool at age 40, I am so glad I gave it a try, since I was never allowed to play an instrument when I was younger. BotXXXXX XXXXXne, I guess, is that it makes me happy.
Plus - this may sound odd, but I like the fact that I can sing and play the drums, and nobody in my family knows anything about that stuff or cares anything about it, and it is totally separate from all of them. And I'm good at these things, I think.
Okay - as for the worrying and feeling guilty about stiff, you are right - it is concentrated on work, mostly. Do you ever have those dreams where it is the end of the term and you realize you never went to one of your classes and don't know when/where the final is? I have those kind of dreams frequently, along with the dreams that I have to get to court, and I keep forgetting things and have to run back into the house a ton of times, and eventually I realize that hours have passed and I missed the hearing. The feelings I get are similar to the feelings in those dreams, although not as specific as to what I'm worried about, and not as strong. It's just a feeling that sits there.
I don't worry about church because, generally, people are forgiving there, and people are generally up front about their flaws, so I feel I can be as well. Plus - everyone at church seems to love me. I'm not sure why, but everyone seems to want to be my friend and are so complimentary on anything I sing or when I play drums or whatever. And if I drop my sticks or something, everyone thinks it's funny. They don't criticize for it. I could totally fall on my face walking up to sing, and although I would be a little embarrassed, it wouldn't be such a big deal.
At home, what do I have to worry about? Nobody is watching what I do or chastising me or expecting anything from me. P. would be understanding (or act that way), even if I burnt the house down.
At work, however, I have a lot of people depending on me. I have my clients to please and to try to do a good job for them. I really care about how things turn out for them. Even when the facts are against them and it's a clear uphill battle and I have explained the outcome will likely be negative, I still feel bad and take it personally if I can't get them what they want (unless they are being totally unreasonable or are bad people and they get what they deserve, then I don't feel bad). I always worry that I am going to miss some argument I could have made or missed some procedural thing which wouldn't allow me to call a witness or present evidence, or something like that. Plus, I am responsible for my employees' livelihoods. I didn't have to worry about that in my old firm, but now it is just me billing, and I have to make enough money to pay all the bills and pay them, and sometimes to pay me. It is a struggle. People don't pay. It's too unpredictable for me. That is a huge worry. That is also a reason I will be glad to go back to my old firm if that works out. Also, if I miss a deadline or screw up, I can be sued for malpractice (I obviously have a ton of insurance, but it's just the fact that would be awful) and I could be disciplined, and could lose my license. That would totally mess up my whole life. Even if I got a small disciplinary consequence - like a month probation or something - it would ruin any chance to become a judge and would make me lose certain certifications.
And now I feel it even more because I am so behind. More than I have ever been. Part of it is because that is the nature of being on my own, part of it is because I just have too much work, and part of it is because I am preoccupied with this other stuff. It is a major thing for me to go see Linda twice a week and have these sleep tests and appointments with Dr. M, because it takes a lot of time from work. That's another reason I like that I can write you - I can do it usually when I'm on the phone or waiting for court or something. But I have never been so unproductive. The Wellbutrin helped (for the ADD), but doesn't seem to be effective anymore. I want to ask dr. M if I can try the stimulants, but I think she would want to wait until all this sleep stuff is done and treated, because she thinks that sleep issues are causing a lot of my concentration problems. So maybe it will be better once we figure out the sleep stuff. I know I have to do the breathing machine, but may also take meds for the movement. It makes sense that if I sleep better, I will be more productive. Plus, when I get through this other stuff, it will be better. It is taking so much of my focus and energy. It is exhausting right now.
I have always been a worrier, and that got a lot better when Dr. M put me on the zoloft (an unexpected benefit). But it is still there.
I'm not sure why the sleeping pills aren't working. I have tried a number of different things. They seem to work at first, but then not. But that might be the fact that when I start a new one, it's usually because I haven't gotten much sleep for a while. Seroquel, an anti-psychotic, seems to work best, XXXXX XXXXX it is not working now. I have so many prescription sleeping pills sitting around, but can't sleep. I guess I should call Dr. M about that. But maybe the sleep treatments will help, too.
And I'm sure you're right about my parents' contribution to my worrying. I would be yelled at for not paying attention or losing things or being disorganized. My parents were so irritated with me because my test scores were so high, but I underperformed in school because I was messing around and not paying attention and not turning in homework and stuff. I think they thought I did it on purpose or was just lazy. Maybe that was part of it. My mom was an LD teacher for a long time. She told me I had learning disabilities, that everyone did to some extent. But her solution was to punish me to try to get me to be more organized and pay attention. It didn't work.
But in college and law school, I did well. I might have taken strange ways around getting things done, but it worked for me. I think it was a huge benefit to me that my college was on trimester, so we usually only took 3 classes per term. It was much easier for me to work with only 3 subjects at a time. Law school wasn't that way, but we also didn't have homework or anything. We just read and participated in class, and our entire grade was one final exam. So I think that helped. And I had a system for studying and memorizing which worked for me.
I can't tell you, though, how relieved I was when I found out I may have ADD and read about it. I had always thought I was just a chronic underachiever.
You are also right about my seeking attention by acting out. I was pretty much starved for attention, and I would act way differently away from home than I would at home. That's, I am sure why I was class clown. And my friends' parents loved me and praised my humor and creativity, and usually my teachers really liked me, too, even though I was disruptive sometimes. Everyone else seemed to like me a lot more than my parents did.
But when I went to college, I didn't act out. It was hard at first, because coming from a small town where I had the same friends all my life, it was different having to make new friends. But I came into my own there, and did well in school, and made some great friends and for the first time was able to just be me all the time. I was so happy my first 3 years and the beginning of my senior year. And I felt normal and liked. And my parents, after I started college, dealt with me differently, and my siblings joke that I became the "favorite." I think I did, because I was over my rebellion (to some extent) and was doing what they thought was acceptable, so it was easier for them to relate to and be proud of me.
I can't remember what I felt when I was little. I think I was happy. I don't remember not being happy. I remember things that happened from a pretty young age (random things - nothing major happened), but I don't remember how I felt. When I was in preschool and kindergarten, my great grandmother would babysit me, and she used to tell me that she knew what it was like to have a sister like J who everyone fawned over and to be ignored. She said when she was 11, she was sent away to live with and take care of her sick grandmother. I didn't understand what she meant - comparing herself to me - at that time I didn't feel disfavored. But I liked her attention and the fact that she would tell me that I was her favorite and that my sister was a brat. It wasn't until later - maybe 4th grade or so that I started to feel like I lacked attention. I just always felt like I was different and there was something wrong with me, that I was a screw-up. I guess I would tell my 4th grade self that I am normal and fine and there's nothing wrong with me and that I deserved attention. I'm not sure how I would tell her to get attention. Acting out was not the best way, but what other options did I have? I would tell her to listen to her friends' parents and teachers when they praised her. That it was them who were normal and right - not that they had a skewed perception, like I thought. I would tell her, I think, to be herself and she would be okay, and that things get much better when you're older, and you will not be a failure if you keep working hard.
As for my late teenage self, I would tell her that the feelings she gets when she is away from home, at work, at practice, at friends' houses, out with friends, etc. is the real thing, and that there will come a time when she feels that all the time. That she doesn't have to feel guilty about hiding that self from her family, that it's her family's loss that they would tease her and not accept her, and that the away-from-home self is really who she is, not the other way around. I would also tell her that she is doing the right thing by staying away from home so much, and to try harder n school so she doesn't get grounded for 9 weeks at a time and have to be home more.
How is that?