The other day a friend posted the following question on Facebook, “Do you have someone whom you tell your secrets to?”

I don’t, well unless we count here.  This is about as honest as I get.

A few days later someone posted, “Do you have someone you can call whenever you need something?”

uh, my parents?

Yesterday someone posted, “Where did you meet your best friend?”

Still taking applications.

And at this point I suddenly realize my panic attacks of the past year are related to this.

Back in 2002 I thought I had two best friends.  One was my co-worker, then boss, then business-partner.  One was a friend from high school.  They could not stand each other, each claiming that the other was using me.

Also almost any guy I dated was using me, according to one or both of them.

Turns out they both were right.

The first she would tell me I was being overly sensitive, or crazy when I would question her.  Meanwhile, she used my accounting degree to better her business, had me pay expenses, making subtle threats about things happening to my dog and parents, when I tried to leave the business.  Then accused me of talking behind her back at a bar.  The problem being I only attended bars with her, suddenly we both knew she’d been lying about more things.  It was confirmed when I was told by people they had avoided me because she bad things about me, yet I never talked bad about her.

The 2nd.  She would call because “the kids wanted to see me” and I’d visit and wind up watching the kids.  Multiple times I had to drop everything for this or that.  Be there for her when things happened, until I asked for help, and suddenly I was a jerk.  I left the relationship for months, but missed the kids.  She accused me of being overly dramatic until I reminded her that she wanted to cry on my shoulder because her kids were gone to their dads for a week when I lost my grandmother just days before.

Another business partner accused me of not sending paperwork, when I had all the USPS priority mail slips for the whole physical the paperwork had to go to and it clearly left my house and stopped at his.

Then there was the boss, who accused me of being paranoid.  She would ask who’s car was in my driveway yesterday.  Or tell me what I did on my day off.  She would say she happened to drive by on the main road near my house and see me, or the car.  Until she got caught.  I happened to be peering out the window of my door, and saw her stopped on the side street closer to my house.  I waited for a while, then stepped on my porch, not looking her direction at first, and she stayed there.   So then I  crossed my arms, and stared her direction until she drove off.  She never spoke of it again.

There was my ex-husband, he said my dog had issues the reason she would yelp around him, until I caught him raising his foot to trip her. He said I was crazy when I said I rated much lower than his dad.  That changed the day I said we needed counseling, he called his dad “for just a minute,” while I fixed dinner, ate it and put everything away, and all the food was in the fridge and cold by the time he got off.  (He also got caught when he tried to take my dog in the divorce and I said, well then I want the boat you bought and never told me about.)

There were the two birthday parties I invited over a dozen people to.  I asked 2 weeks before, a week, days… and on the day of… I was the only one there.  (BTW it was my birthday this week, I wanted a party but I was too scared to ask anyone, which probably added to the panic attack)

Add to this list the ones that happened during my anxiety attacks and there’s 3 more.  Plus other incidents.

I don’t know whom to trust.  I don’t know how to trust. I’m trying to hire people and my body is crying out against it.  I’m trying to get up the courage to call some people to make my birthday special, and my body is saying, you can’t stand in a bar with a bag of leis and pretty plates again.  I’m trying to believe that I can call someone and ask for help, when my best friend walked away just because I asked.  I’m trying to believe that I can trust someone with secrets, when I’ve had best friends use them to tell me how awful I am.  I’m trying to build friendships with people in real life, when I trust people online easier.  I’m trying to tell my body that all this sh*t that happened before, may happen again, but this being locked inside myself isn’t making me a better person. I’m trying, and my body is answering with insomnia, panic attacks, and sudden waves of tears and honest overwhelm of what is so f*cking wrong with me that I’ve had so many people walk away and tell me I’m crazy, paranoid, delusional, egotistical, pompous, arrogant, unworthy of love, deserving of all that is bad that happens to me…

but you know what?  Despite what those people said, and what my body believes, I deserve good stuff.  I deserve friends.  So do you.  We all do.  We deserve love.  Even though there are people who say you don’t … you do.

It just takes a while to believe it sometimes, and sometimes your body objects…  but it will change.  I hope soon, I’d love a good 8 hours sleep….  speaking of, it’s long after my bedtime…

Sleep well my friends.

MJ Schrader