14 Oct 2014: I am awake and ready to learn. I am no longer receiving instruction, I am now seeing truth.
13 Oct 2014 (ANGER BEYOND RECKONING, peace, love): Today was a really difficult day. I’d made plans to start working on a few household tasks – finishing up some work on my SOs house. NOTHING was going right. The screws for the transition pieces were too small, nothing would stay put, I made a mess with some glue. I gave up on that one and moved to the bathroom door trim. I had to reset the door frame a bit because the door had started to rub at the top. Anyway – I BROKE THE DOOR FRAME. I mean – it’s really just some superficial stuff, but repairing it will be very challenging. Bottom line – I was RAGING! The whole time – probably 3 or 4 hours, I kept wanting to give up and go hide, but I kept reminding myself that hiding is not allowed! So here I am a good 4 or 5 hours into a MASSIVE, SUSTAINED, ABSOLUTE RAGE!!! Uhhh – it just wouldn’t stop. I did pushups, I tried breath exercises, I did some reading, IT DIDN’T MATTER! Finally I decided I wanted to hit the book store (ANGRY of course) to see if I could find something on anger. I now own a great little ACT workbook specific to anger, so that’s cool. However I also picked up a CD book by Byron Katie. She’s been suggested to me by a couple of confidants. I popped the CD in before leaving the parking lot and decided that I’d just drive for a while – and listen. I parked for a while to – and kept listening. In her first section she described her first experience of awakening to herself for the very first time. IT WAS EXACTLY WHAT I’D EXPERIENCED LAST WEEK – she captured it so perfectly, even the part about how words just can’t do it justice. She also described her life before her awakening – and it really resonated deeply with me. If you listen to her – she’s describing herself as someone WITH NPD!!! I am not kidding or reading into this BYRON KATIE HAD NPD! She was great at her job, but miserable inside, she was filled with shame and rage (she used those specific words more than once), she yelled at everyone, she hid from the world, she was depressed all the time. She was a fragile narcissist – I am almost certain of it! In those few moments of listening to Byron Katie describe MY LIFE as hers, and MY SENSE OF AWAKENING as hers – she became so beautiful to me. Needless to say – the rage was gone after that… I am now listening closely – and will be digging more into her work… What a wondrous discovery – and WHAT A POWERFUL SENSE OF HOPE!!!
11 Oct 2014 (excitement, awe, anticipation; helplessness, panic, rage): Removed self from on-line forum. I came to the sudden realization that I was trapping myself there instead of letting go and BEING PRESENT IN MY EXPERIENCE! The problem is – so much of the discussion is about peoples opinions on various symptoms of this mental illness. I spent a full week tearing this thing apart and trying to figure out what makes me tick, but now I need to let go of the labels and the opinions and the delusion that I’m in control. The forum was ABSOLUTELY PIVITOL in my initial process though – I would have completely unraveled without the support of the people in those forums. I will return once I’ve done more work and am no longer bringing my dysfunction with me into the conversation. Really opened myself up through mindful awareness while out and about today – and had some wonderful human connections throughout – I believe it was a total of three or four direct human interactions approached with openness and ease – AMAZING! POWERFUL!!! and FUN! The Night ENDED on a low note with a complete emotional crash and burn! Helplessness and anger really took hold and was really overwhelming and upsetting.
10 Oct 2014 (joy, confusion, curiosity, freedom): Further dialog and Q&A with significant other; started Acceptance and Commitment Therapy workbook; Started reading the book ‘Mindsight’. Note: Both books look like they will be very very helpful! I am already working to apply Mindsight as part of my internal and interactive processes. Also decided I’m going to go visit my family for an indeterminate amount of time. My SO has given me her full support, but we also had a VERY REAL and adult conversation about both of our long term needs and plans. It may very well be that all we have left is a friendship. And, I’m okay with that. For the first time in my life, I did not crumble underneath the weight of rejection. Not that it was rejection – it was properly measured acceptance. She’s also doing some self-evaluation work now, just reexamining the past six years with new eyes. Even if we don’t make it romantically as a couple after this – we’re BOTH going to be MUCH stronger people because of this experience!
9 Oct 2014 (emergence): Third therapy session. Pretty certain my doc is taken aback by my willingness to be open and honest, and present with my experience DESPITE the fact that I’m a narc. Quite frankly – so am I. BUT I CAN NO LONGER HIDE FROM REALITY!!! Diagnostic NPD confirmation from therapist (though prefers not to use labels. I’m not using insurance for this, so he doesn’t really need to). Additional discussion with mother. Full reveal and beginning of healing journey with significant other; REBIRTH of TRUE SELF! I’ll cover those last two more deeply in dedicated blog posts.
7 Oct 2014 (fear, excitement): Second therapy session – was REALLY excited by some of the initial work I’d started doing a couple of days earlier and wanted to share at a million miles a second. Therapist had to calm me down and bring me back into the discussion. It was actually a very powerful learning moment for me. I need to stop and listen. I DON’T KNOW EVERYTHING! Because of this and multiple other learning moments, I started creating mantras in my head like: “When I pretend to know everything, I miss out on the opportunity to learn from those around me!”. AND THIS IS SO TOTALLY AND COMPLETELY TRUE – which led to another major breakthrough around the 9th (above). Kicked off the true beginning of my healing journey with my mother, including another two hour phone call that began by her wanting my darkness not to be real FOR MY SAKE. Had to explain to her that she needs to set that aside – this is real and it’s not going away. I very passionately explained a whole lot of stuff though and we had such a wonderful talk – it was just an amazing experience overall to now have a GENUINE relationship with TWO people in my life – my 2nd ex, and my mother… By the way – this is where my mental popcorn machine started to kick in, but more on that later!
5 Oct 2014 (terror): Full reveal to mother – via e-mail (botched). Again – botched. My advice, don’t type up a list of all the horrible shit you’ve done and then send it to someone OUT OF THE BLUE! Also try to leave out things like ‘I’ve been diagnosed as a crazy person AND IT’S ALL YOUR FAULT!’. It doesn’t work well. It didn’t matter though, she’s my MOM! We spent two hours together on the phone in tears – and she helped me see what really happened when I was a kid. She told me that I was and always have been ADORED! She acknowledge that what she did was an act of pure selfishness. She gave me the space to hate her for her selfish act. And then she made sure I knew I was loved again and again and again!!! This was another truly amazing and extremely powerful healing moment for me!
2 Oct 2014 (fear, panic): Full reveal to 2nd ex-wife – via e-mail (botched). This whole things was so botched and childishly mishandled on my part that it would be funny if it weren’t so sad. What happened here at this point was miraculous though – I was forgiven and told I was still loved anyway. My 2nd ex-wife, ONE OF THE PEOPLE I’D TAKEN WITH ME ON MY WILD RIDE, told me she knew, understood, wasn’t afraid, still loved me, and would hold my hand in the darkness. I broke down on the inside – but this acknowledgement of my humanness, from someone I’d been my worst self with at one time, was life altering!!!
1 Oct 2014 (complete fucking mess): My entire world collapsed out from under my feet! Handled a lot of things VERY VERY POORLY with my 2nd ex wife and made some HUGE errors in judgment on multiple levels, placing my relationship with my SO at risk! Joined on-line support group – which became my lifeline and helped me get past the absolute worst sense of being LOST that I’ve ever experienced in my entire life!!!
30 Sep 2014 (panic, terror): First therapy appointment – didn’t move, show emotion or blink. Hell, I barely breathed. All I wanted to do was RUN RUN RUN! But I FORCED myself to go, and FORCED myself to sit in that chair, and FORCED myself to leave my bullshit at the door (as much of it as I could at the time anyway), and even FORCED myself to go back again (but it was a LOT easier the second time).
27 Sep 2014 (devastation, realization): Major crisis of self. Continued research into and acceptance of NPD as the root of all my dysfunction. FOR THE FIRST TIME IN MY LIFE, EVERYTHING MADE SENSE!!! I could tie ALL of my attitudes, behaviors, tendencies, hopes, dreams, wants and needs, etc. There was simply NO DENYING IT! It was absolutely terrible! But it ALSO gave me a profound sense of relief in some ways. At least now I had an enemy to fight.
Mid Sep 2014 (panic): Dawning realization of my condition. Narcissistic Personality quiz score of 32 out of 40 at http://psychcentral.com/quizzes/narcissistic.htm (20 or less is ‘normal’). Anything over 20 and they suggest you look at the details of this disorder – so I followed the link… and so began my journey!
Truth note: This is NOT my original inventory, but I got the same score (32).