Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Broken Gamer Girl

XBrood Live: Broken Gamer Girl

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Broken Gamer Girl

Yes, Morrigan and Salem came home the day before I was to see my psychiatrist for the first time in my adult life. I was standing at the front door smoking a cigarette and talking with Rigid. We made sure we kept a nice open line of communication regarding everything ever since that day. It was actually going pretty well and I knew it was because my cycle was nearly over AND he really was trying to be careful. As we were chatting away on the phone I heard a cats desperate meow. “Salem?” I cried out as I looked around for the skinny black cat with white paws and skittish yellow eyes. There were a few more gasping meows before I realized it was Morrigan. I looked behind the bush to my left and sure enough there she was. She didn’t know whether I’d rush her and yank her around so she was unsure as to what to do and sat there cowering behind the bush shaking with fear and possibly hunger. I casually walked into the house and grabbed her dry food from the top of the refrigerator. I felt a bit like Peggy Bundy walking through my kitchen cigarette in one hand, phone in the other and reaching for the food. I got off the phone and left it on the counter. It felt surreal as I poured it out into her bowl.

She munched on the food and I went to close the door. I felt relieved yet strangely indifferent. I thought about all the things that have happened in the past few days and wonder if they would have happened at all if the cats hadn’t run away. Yes… they would have. It would have been the bills or the tickets or my family or anything at all. My cat was home, but Salem was still missing. How would he feel about that? Morrigan meowed and meowed for me until I stood over her and watched her eat her food. She meowed and munched and meowed and munched her little kibbles away. I even gave her pieces of cooked pork meat. BIG FAT MISTAKE but she enjoyed it for the time being and she was happily grubbing and pawing at me for affection. It was darling.

Rigid eventually came home. Morrigan and I were in the living room on the couch and when she saw him she scampered off into the bedroom. The first thing he did was huff around the living room and complain that the fleas would infest the bedroom while throwing his hands up in the air. Kind of like someone accidentally stepping on hot coals. Hands up in the air and stamping down one foot at a time… it was comical, but I tried not to laugh and in a very quiet voice asked him to have a seat and keep quiet. So he quietly huffed about the fleas and the house and after a short while Morrigan came into the living room with us. She meowed and meowed for his affection, but he only looked away from her. Like a lover scorned really. She went up to him and stood on her hind legs between his feet, put one paw up on his knee and outstretched the other towards his face until he looked at her. I shit you not, my cat does this! His heart melted to pieces and he began to pet her and say sweet things to her. Poor kitty. She missed us so much.

Eventually he stopped complaining about the fleas and filth and worried that she probably didn’t eat very well the last few days. He was shocked to find that the cat wasn’t actually filthy at all. In fact she was quite clean and her fur was exceptionally shiny. She seemed to have done quite well for herself, but what about Salem? As we sat there talking with the cat between us about all the things that had happened up until that moment Rigid’s face went all funny. I asked him what was up and he said there was a cat at the side of the house. He heard it get out of the litter box we’d left out there for them. I thought he was crazy because all the doors were closed, but sure enough it was Salem. We tried to bring her inside, but she’s so skittish she only ran away. Well, he said she could stay the hell out and never come back for all he cared. So we went back to the living room and to our discussion. I don’t think we’d been sitting there for more than 15 minutes before we heard a crunching coming from the kitchen. We both got the funniest look on our faces, kind of like when a baby discovers there’s a fresh turd in their nappy… a little bemused. Rigid got up and closed the door behind her.

That’s how we got both of them back. She wouldn’t come to him at first and I think she even made a funny scowling noise. Something I’d never heard her do so I was a little nervous that she wouldn’t get used to things again. Later that night I smoked another cigarette by the door. I think I was watching the results from American Idol (don’t tell anyone I watch that it’s my biggest secret) when suddenly this giant bug came barreling straight at my ear and got stuck in my hair. I screamed, flailed and jumped up so damn high I hit the middle of my living room without ever realizing it never dropping my cigarette. Rigid came bounding out of the bedroom (‘cause he refuses to watch that stupid show with me but asks me “Who was kicked off this week?” each time I do) and yelled at me to calm down and tell him what happened. I don’t know what I said to him. I made a lot of funny noises but I think I got the general idea out to him. He let me know there was nothing wrong with me and there’s no bug in my hair. I told him the thing was as big as a house. How could something as big as a house try to get in my ear? I suspect it was a June bug. A big fat June bug… In April??? I stood there staring at the door, holding my hand over my ear and just as we went to close the door Salem went darting straight out of it. GONE… poof. Just like that. GONE.

I so wish I could write down exactly what Rigid said at the time. He slammed the door shut after her and said “Fuck her. She can stay the hell out.” But there’s so much more than that. So much more that I had another one of my wonderful epiphanies… Rigid loves his cat. The fact that she ran away made him feel anger towards her. Not sadness like it did in me. THAT’S why he kept reacting the way he did to my sadness. THAT’S why he couldn’t understand me he was angry at the cats for abandoning us. I asked him if he wasn’t going to look for her and he said something about her dying in the street like an animal. I kept quiet and looked at Morrigan. She just stared at me like, “What? Your not getting her? Phff… Whatever.”

I sat back down and watched the show with Morg. A few minutes later a pregnant woman showed up at my door. I had no idea who she was, but she said that Rigid had been looking for a cat a few days ago and thought she had just seen it under a car next door. I thanked her and called after him to tell him what she’d said. To my surprise he went to look for her but came back empty handed. She ran from him, but this time he said, “Don’t worry, she’ll come back after she gets hungry enough.” Actually I wasn’t worried, but quite interested at this point. I just quietly watched him go back to the bedroom and sat there looking like the cat who swallowed the canary. I KNEW it… Everything was coming together, but I still hadn’t sorted it all out. I tried to put it out of my head for the time being and concentrate on my cat and my show and … stuff.

Less than twenty minutes into House, a wonderful new show on Fox, what do I hear in the kitchen again? ‘Crunch! Crunch! Crunch! Crunch!’ she went so I snuck around the kitchen, closed the door and went to tell Rigid. I found him lying on the bed watching the Unit on CBS legs outstretched and crossed with his hands behind his head. I whispered the good news and he said, “I knew she’d come back. See, it’s okay honey.” Never taking his gaze away from the TV. He said it so coolly that you’d scarcely believe his reaction earlier. I left him to his show and watched the remainder of mine with both cats and went to bed content that night…. Not with both cats. They slept in the living room.

The next day I mentally prepared myself for my visit to the doctor. I was nervous but happy and full of energy. I didn’t understand it though because I hadn’t had any coffee. Why would I feel that way? My heart was pounding as though I’d had a full cup and I was running around working and being productive and I couldn’t understand what the HELL my problem was. I wanted to know what bug crawled up my ass to make me so happy, yeah, my cats were back but so what? Was this nerves? I tried to ignore it but it kept gnawing at me. After more than half my workday was gone I crashed. I got so tired and so… weird. It was like I was high up in the air and then BAM I hit the floor. I figured it’s some sort of depression thing. Usually when I feel that way I figure I had too much coffee even though I water mine down significantly. (I hate decaf makes my kidneys hurt.) I tried not to think about it and eventually made my way home. My stomach was in knots, but I couldn’t quite understand why. I mean I don’t have any trouble sharing my thoughts and feelings with you guys why would I have trouble with a professional?

The thoughts persisted though. What if he doesn’t like me? What if he thinks I’m just there for drugs? What about a family? If I have to get on medication won’t I have to get on birth control? Shouldn’t I get on birth control? If I left my first husband in the first place because I want children what does this then say about me? But I have to take care of myself, I know. I have to talk to someone even if all it means is talking. And so I went home and waited for my appointment. I lay there on my couch thinking and thinking Morrigan sitting on my chest and Salem not far away. I lay there and wondered if I actually needed help at all one minute and wondered how I could have gone this long without it the next. My sister got there eventually and we sat at the park for a while with the kids. By the time we were on our way to my appointment Rigid was just getting there so that when I got there he’d been waiting for me and already knew where my doctors office was and where to go.

I nervously filled out the paperwork and carefully read the contract. They seem to be very detailed and explain everything carefully and clearly. How to contact the doctor after hours - that the office isn’t open on holidays, things like that. I basically got the idea that it was written for really neurotic people with boundary issues. I felt like a child scolded and I hadn’t even walked in yet. After I was done Rigid held my hand and gave me water from the cooler right next to him until I was called. When the lady called my name I thought I would choke on my tongue, but a curious feeling came over me. Calm… I felt calm for the first time in a long time. My stomach seemed to suddenly unfurl and suddenly everything became fairly clear. Rigid of course got up to go with me, but I asked him to stay behind.

I walked in, sat down and prepared for the possibility that I wouldn’t get what I needed out of this session. I was pleasantly surprised. He made me feel very comfortable and put me at ease right away. I believe his first question was, “So you just got married? You want to kill your husband yet?” He may have been surprised when I honestly and quite plainly said, “Yes.” He laughed at me, but I think that exchange really helped me feel better. I told him everything that happened and why. How we’ve been fighting since the miscarriage and even before than, about my divorce, my mother’s alcoholism, my father and even my cats. Well, okay not really my cats but about how my husband and I interacted because of it. I even told him about how I slammed my fist into the wall and that I’ve done things like that many times throughout the years. Well, he understood why I never came but let me know that if I continued this behavior he would have to put me on medication, but, and it’s the but I was waiting for, that I have to make a decision whether to go on birth control and take meds or tough it out and not get on birth control. Either way he wanted me to see a Marriage Counselor.

So I’ve given you guys the extremely summarized visit, but all in all I was very happy with the results. I feel better knowing that someone isn’t going to hear what I have to say and automatically hand me some happy-pills to make me feel better. I think the approach I’d like to take is to keep up with my discussions and just tough it out for a while longer. I need to know that I can use every skill in my power to communicate with my husband and the people around me. Regardless of what goes on in my life because if I can’t do that then what’s the point? I’m just happy I figured it out. Rigid reacts to everything with anger first. EVERYTHING… Can’t say if that’s an English trait or not, but it’s an insight I didn’t have before. Anger first, understanding & compassion later…. After I beat him half to death with my rationalizations of course.
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Posted by Maharet at 2:09 PM

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