Meet Me, Meet Susan

Although she didn’t have a name, Susan has been with me through my entire life. Not in the sense of a multiple personality disorder, but more as a distinct part of my own personality.
Susan was named by a man I dated briefly in late 2009. While we were dating I was battling a depressive episode and picked up a few books on overcoming depression. One of those books talked about naming the inner voice of insecurity at the root of depression as a means of being able to reason with the voice. As we went through a messy breakup (well, messy for me), one day I was on the phone with “Mark,” and he made the statement, “I like you. It’s Susan I can’t stand.” And with that, Susan had a name. I don’t know why he chose the name Susan, but considering that he’d become very well acquainted with her, Mark was certainly entitled to pick any name he wanted.
As I mentioned already, even though she has only been known by name for a few years, there’s no doubt that many people in my life met Susan decades ago. Susan was directly responsible for my first round of anti-depressants, after my then boyfriend complained that I was “psycho” (in all fairness, my behavior was definitely extreme enough to objectively call my sanity into question). Even before that, Susan wreaked havoc on almost all of my relationships–friends, family, boyfriends–no one was safe from her melodramatic tears or her unmerciful wrath.
Oddly enough, Mark is the last person to encounter Susan, about three years ago. I would love to say that naming her gave me the power to reason with her and that she’s no longer contributing to my emotional turmoil. Unfortunately, the more likely explanation is that she’s been bound and gagged as part of my emotional shutdown. Judging from my most recent ups and downs, I suspect she’s in the process of freeing herself and getting ready to unleash her hellfire. I’ve already put aside my long-term skepticism and made an appointment to start seeing a new therapist. One of my greatest hopes in writing these posts is to channel some of this negative energy in a positive way.

I Suppose I Have to Start Somewhere

I’ve often contemplated starting a blog, but was never sure what I could possibly write about on a regular basis.  I’m still not entirely sure what this blog will ultimately become, but I figured I might as well give it a try.  I’m learning as I go, so I apologize in advance for the lack of really snazzy formatting or interesting pictures.

I guess I’ll start by answering a few questions you might have right now.  First, who am I?  I’m a woman in my mid-30s, who leads a mostly average existence.  I love to sing–I belong to two choirs and also enjoy karaoke (when I have time).  I have a black belt in Tang Soo Do.  I love to read and do some writing of my own.  I struggle with my weight and the body issues that come with it.  I probably know way more about hair care than I should.  I’ve been slowly morphing into a bit of a skincare/makeup addict.  I’m single and occasionally venture out into the dating world.  I was that nerd in school.  Last year I was diagnosed with ADD.  Two weeks ago I was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder, type 2.  I mention all of these things because I have a feeling I will write more extensively on all of them.

Your second question is probably about the title of my blog.  During my last semester of college (1999), my friend and I drew a map of a place we called Sick and Twisted.  The different regions were named for different dramas we had experienced, particularly when it came to dating.  I used to keep a copy of the map in my office with pushpins labeled with peoples’ names.  Based on whatever was going on, my friends and I were moved around on the map.

A few years after I graduated, I found myself on a bit of an emotional roller coaster.  Sick and Twisted was resurrected and became symbolic of my ups and downs during that time.  I also decided that a novel was in order, although it would be almost 10 years before I was ready to sit down and start writing.

So that’s the short version of my story.  I’m going to end here today, since I have to leave for choir practice soon (choir requires its own series of posts).

The original pencil sketch of Sick and Twisted:Sick and Twisted