A brief summary of how my current bout of shadow work has been going (it will theoretically last from this past autumnal equinox to this coming spring equinox). I’ve had to do some stove touching in order to learn some things, and I know not everyone wants to read about that. If you’ve read the last two posts (Five of Cups and February Full Moon), you pretty know the gist.
Mentions: self-injury, being afraid of ODing, drinking, and vomiting.
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I technically started the current round of shadow work on the autumnal equinox, and it will theoretically end on this coming spring equinox (#equinox shadow work 2015). It took “the burning period” that started sometime in November to really get my attention about this round, and it’s kind of just come and gone in small waves.
People have left (A hole appears), Faces have turned away, different Faces have turned towards me (such as a King Face of Mani), and I started and struggled with trying an antidepressant (Gleipnir’s Ingredients (v)).
I also decided to stop that one (withdrawing over break) because I felt that there was no symptom improvement and too many side effects to continue struggling with it. Granted, the psychiatrist pointed out that I hadn’t actually been on the new dose long enough for it to really kick in (it was increased at the check-in prior to Thanksgiving, so I was only on it for about two weeks).
* * Fun fact: It was my life – including my ability to work in the Shop – that was being affected. I did not want to continue on something that only seemed to be adding side effects on top of my depression without doing anything to relieve the depression symptoms. So, I stopped fluoxetine. * *More People have left or stepped back, more burning, that group of dead showed up with a Person, and another ancestral representative showed up (as far as I know, it’s okay to talk about him, but that can wait for another post). People keep wanting to be found in the world, in my life, rather than delegated to a certain area.
The equivalent of “pay the fuck attention” keeps happening when Satsekhem and Thetwistedrope have posted about holy days turning into ‘yo remember to take care of yourself’ moments and self care being A Thing.
I’ve side-eyed this new antidepressant more than once, and I think I’ve reach a point where I’m tired of waiting – for something to happen, to definitely feel better rather than just trudging through life.
Things can’t be as alright as I’ve tried to let on. I tried to find some optimism in my Five of Cups writing, but there’s a little bit more to be done than just writing that. I touched the metaphorical stove on self-injury, and it’s no where near as alluring as it was before (I learned). I found out that I’m afraid of overdosing, and I’m probably not nearly as likely to actually do that (I learned).
I have the potential to drink casually. I also threw responsibility to the wind (why do I always have to be the responsible one) for one night (it’s Opening, go ahead and celebrate with everyone else), and it was the first and last time I’m partying hard. The February Full Moon is a to-some-degree fictionalized account because I needed to learn.
I needed to drink 3 Red Solo cups of Everclear Jungle Juice (Ohio Everclear is 151 proof rather than the 190 of some other states). I needed to lose control, to not remember, to fucking be honest.
When you peel away the classes, my job in the Shop, working on shows, and all of the to-do lists, I’m not entirely sure why or how I’m getting through each day.
I’m not sure what I’m supposed to be looking at long-term most of the time. I’m just here, and since I woke up, I better go through the daily routine.
I needed to get all of the poison out of me – literally, my body reached the point where I was vomiting uncontrollably; less literally, it was a chance for Nidhogg to remove munrthoka and all kinds of energetic shit that I had been collecting.
Most people learn that ingesting too much alcohol can result in the body inducing vomiting, and the person can wind up asphyxiating if they’re in the wrong position. It’s one thing to be told this, but it’s different to come out of being blacked out (temporarily) to the sensation of not being in control in this visceral, utterly physical way. I wanted to push my body to the point where it would decide if I lived or died, and my body was doing its best to live.
Don’t get me wrong. It wasn’t a Hollywood moment where the lighting shifted, the music swelled, and I suddenly found purpose in my life. I re-entered being blacked out shortly and didn’t really have my memory pick back up until I woke up on a friend’s couch at 10 am, and I spent the rest of the weekend mostly sleeping (I’m still on that anti-depressant, and this medication doesn’t play well with alcohol).
* * To be honest, I doubt any medication would play well with the estimated equivalent of 10 – 12 shots of Everclear in at most 2 hours. However, it’s more the gist that I feel I should walk away with. Things can’t be as fine as I’m trying to make them if I can come damn close to giving myself alcohol poisoning and tell someone I wanted to die (then to see if I wanted to die or not, then to feel). * *
Shadow work isn’t always thinking over something and doing magic. It isn’t always me-led therapeutic writing and personal realizations. It isn’t always crying yourself to sleep and chipping away at personal healing. Sometimes, it’s visceral, un-beautiful, un-romantic, I’ve gotta touch the stove in order to learn, shit that seems stupid in hindsight.