So I talked to my BFF from college quite frequently. Often daily. I’ll call him Ned*. (If you read this, Ned, I’m sorry I gave you such a stupid name) There’s also a romantic history there (surprise!) but I like to think it’s water under the bridge. Our friendship has changed and evolved over the years, and I turn to him a lot. I think we’re a lot alike, and my new-found fascination with Psychology is another thing we have in common now. There are plenty of differences, too, naturally. But anyway.
We were talking last night, on the computer, where most of our conversations take place. I was talking about how I have trouble believing I’m smart. I like to use big fancy words (and now I have some Psychology ones to add to my repertoire!) so that people will think I’m smart. Wait. People will THINK I’m smart. I don’t think I’m smart, but I want to fool people into thinking I am.
See, my accomplishments growing up were never really credited to me. My mother, the narcissist, liked to take them as her own.
I’m going to pause here, because a quick scan through my previous posts show me that I haven’t really described my mother very much. Which is surprising, because I reference her often, in meetings, in therapy, and so on.
My mother could put Narcissus to shame. To this day, the world, hell the entire universe, revolves around her. She threw a temper tantrum one year because she didn’t like her Christmas presents. She didn’t talk to her sister for over a year because of an offhanded comment she’d made, “Oh, you’re being ridiculous!” She didn’t talk to my oldest brother for over a year, too–they only reconciled when she went into the hospital, because no matter the circumstances, it would be a real dick thing to do not to reach out to your mother when she’s in the hospital. On my college graduation day, I didn’t get any “congratulations!” or “good job!” or “I’m proud of you!” … she asked me where her birthday present was. I could go on, but suffice it to say I grew up in a house where everyone didn’t just walk on eggshells to try to appease her (or at least not piss her off) but we fucking tiptoed on them.
Ok, back to the story. When I was in 4th grade or so, I was invited into the Talented & Gifted program. My SLAA Sponsor, Chris*, asked if I got much recognition at home for that. Well, no. It was just kind of expected. “Of course you got into the T&G program, you’re smart. And of course you’re smart, you’re my daughter.”
So I don’t think I’m smart… and even if I AM, it’s all because of her.
I was telling Ned that I’ve even had the thought about Emma… of course she’s smart, her dad is really smart. HER DAD is really smart. Yup. Now, I do think he’s smart, sometimes intimidatingly so.
But Ned questioned this theory. Basically his theory was: smart people ask for help.
Oh. Right. Seth’s seen the best way to get help, and rejected it.
Me? I’m in three 12-step programs (though Anon is kind of on the back burner), I have two sponsors, I have a therapist, I have a career counselor, I have a lawyer, and I even reached out to our former couples therapist for help. By that metric, I’m a fucking genius!
Yesterday my career counselor, Shannon*, said she thinks I’m uber smart. I’m getting better at taking compliments, so I actually said “thank you.”
So right now I’m struggling with finding what the right balance will look like for me. What I want to do, is everything. I have to admit that I just can’t do everything. I want to go to school full time, work full time, watch the baby full time, and work my recovery. Yeah, that’s 4 full time jobs. Unfortunately, I’ve also realized of those 4 things, there’s only one that someone else can do for me. 😦
Anyway. So Shannon wants to talk to Sid. And today Sid asked for Shannon’s information, I guess it might be helpful to have a career counselor he can refer people to. She wants to ask him his assessment of what he thinks I can handle, and if any of my addictions might get in the way. Well, ok, she wanted me to ask him that, but I’d told her that I have difficulty asking for my adult needs, so she offered to do it for me.
All this is to help come up with a comprehensive game plan, what I want to do work/school-wise, how much that will cost, with detailed research and explanations behind everything… so we can present it to my lawyer, Carol*. Who will present it to Seth’s lawyer.
Holy shit, I’m one baby step closer to a divorce from my sex addict husband.