Friday I went to the Ex, which is our big three-week fair in Toronto. There was 1.75 admission to celebrate Toronto’s 175th birthday. The day was just gorgeous. I went with two friends, and we wandered about for hours. So many people, sun and exhibits. I stayed for about five hours, then home on the bus.
Saturday I stayed at home, in a worn out state. A friend came by in the evening as I was just lolling in bed, so I went out with her for a quick dinner of Korean hot pot. This is one of my comfort foods – it’s a rice based dish, with sliced steamed greens, carrots and zucchini, a bit of beef, and an egg cracked over the top. It comes to the table sizzling, and you kind of break the egg with a chopstick and stir it into the rice so it cooks. Then some splashes of hot sauce – hmmm… nice.
But mostly I napped and read on Saturday. And today I went out for a group movie – District 9. This is an extremely unusual alien movie. I took it as a political satire, but you could look at it as straight action. Supposedly dim-witted aliens are restricted to a township-like camp in Johannesburg. A country called UMI seems in charge, and they wish to move the aliens to a smaller camp. Alien mistreatment and condescension ensues – a brutal military and really stupid bureaucracy leap into action and screw things up royally. A bureaucrat becomes an unlikely hero and the aliens are the most sympathetic characters. I really liked this, but it’s not a cozy movie.
I walked a lot today and on Friday. Today I walked all the way home from the movie with a friend – about 5 subway stops. And this morning I did a 45 minute daily walk as is my habit. I’m not very fit. Walking while talking does make it easier to cover the kilometers painlessly though. It’s new for me to walk 45 minutes instead of my habitual 30 minutes. I need some exercise that is not going to trigger overwhelming PTSD symptoms, but enough to get somewhat fit. It’s difficult to find that balance.
Well, continuing with a post that is all over the place, I wanted to record that I went to my second therapy session last week. I like the therapist so far. I’m just wishing to record how I’m doing with this and figure out if it’s helping me. I don’t want to pay for something that doesn’t help.
So far she is mainly trying to forge a relationship I think, as well as get some sense of my past. She asked about my childhood this time, so I tried to describe it with a general bird’s eye view. Very quickly, I strongly felt I didn’t want to talk about this, so I asked if we could discuss something else, which we then did. We talked about some novels we’d both read, and what we liked to read. That took up most of the rest of the session. I guess she’s establishing that we have some common ground as people, which we do seem to.
The only advice she gave me was to keep up the socializing. Which I was going to do anyway. She said that isolation leads to depression, so the socializing is important for that.
Next time I go, I want to find out what she plans to do with me, and what I can do on my own. Also I want to ask if she thinks I do have PTSD, or some other anxiety problem. I’d rather not have PTSD, though I do think I have a lot of the symptoms. But not all. For instance, I don’t have the nightmares or severe sleep disturbances that others seem to have.
I know I spend more time than others in an exhausted state. And of course there are the body memories. Oh, and other stuff. But maybe it’s some other anxiety.
I’ve also been back for meditation group, which is good. I dashed out in a rush to get there before they locked the doors, so I didn’t bother fixing myself up – no makeup, contacts or fresh top. I figured – well, as long as I’ve had a shower, all I’ll be doing is sitting with my eyes closed – who needs lipstick?
Well, of course it turned out that this was their bi-monthly social evening, where after a shorter meditation, there are cookies and juice and a mission to talk to each other. I did not feel my best, sigh. But I actually had a nice time anyway. We were to forgo the usual ‘So, do you come here often?’ and ‘What do you do?’ and ask more interesting questions – ‘What of the things you do most excites you?’ and ‘What is your dream?’
I had two quite interesting conversations using those questions, which surprised me. I tend to feel that those are maybe too personal to ask someone you don’t know, and I wasn’t sure what I’d answer to those questions. But the two people I talked to were happy to launch into a discussion of their dreams, and I didn’t have to provide one of my own. My own dream relates to overcoming my PTSD symptoms, so I didn’t want to talk about that. I’m not sure what another dream would be right now. I feel I need to get the basics down before branching out into more grand dreams.
One woman talked about how she was justing writing her profile for some online dating sites. She was in her forties, and wanted to get serious about finding a partner. Then I talked to a fellow who is very active in the group, who said he’d retired from IT and become a yoga instructor. His dream was to advance meditation I think. Something like that.
Maybe I’ll keep those questions handy in my back pocket for future social events. What are you most excited about doing…(um, keeping it clean of course) and What is your dream….