Foraging In Dark Places

Yes, you’d be quite right if you came to the conclusion that I had been missing in action.  I have been doing what all good kiwi do, in order to stay alive.  Hide from anything alleged to be a predator.

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This is a kiwi.  (A kiwi is not a piece of fruit, that is a kiwifruit).  Outside of captivity the kiwi is actually pretty hard to find.  They are nocturnal and prefer foraging in the undergrowth, keeping out of the path of their predators.  That long beak helps them in this foraging process.  While it might look strange, sometimes I wish I had a beak like that, so that I could forage away, safely out of harms way, and manage to turn over the good from the bad in the undergrowth.

I might not have the beak I would like but I have been foraging in the undergrowth myself.  It’s a good place to stay safe, keep out of trouble, and reflect.  Sometimes it gets a bit dark and lonely, but then bumping into other friendly birds in the undergrowth could provide for some companionship without risking the broad light of day.  My good friend Ruby and I seem to cross paths in the undergrowth a bit.  And I like that, although both of us seem in positions where we are unable to be of much help to each other beyond recognition of each other’s pain.  While I would never wish pain on Ruby, it is sometimes nice to know that I am not alone in this.

Okay, so what does all this mean, you’re no doubt wondering?

On a literal sense my eyes are now giving me trouble courtesy of Graves’ Disease.  It seems even more likely now that this little number is returning from remission, and it does not please me.   At this stage there is no treatment for my eyes available (until get gets worse and might require surgery).  The worst of it is pain behind the eyes.  The only relief I can get is a dark room with my eyes closed.  It helps a bit for the time I am there, but it does  mean very little gets done.

But it is the figurative darkness that disturbs me most.  I can’t think straight (it’s taken me all day to write this because five minutes at a time is a marathon),  I don’t want to think, I don’t want my feelings.  I don’t want anyone to ask me how I am.  I just want to sleep.  All this spells one thing to me:


Perhaps I mistakenly thought that when my medication got sorted out a few weeks ago, that I would be back to me.  The problem though (I think) is that I have been dealing with some very difficult and uncomfortable feelings in therapy lately.  Actually it’s more like a long running saga, but maybe I’m getting some where.  The problem is that it hurts like hell.

I regularly tell other people that feelings are just feelings, neither good nor bad.  And it’s true.  I know it is.  It’s just really hard to practise what I preach when I don’t like those feelings.  I’m trying not to judge myself based on those feelings but I find myself feeling guilty, ashamed and just generally not a very nice person.  I’m quite sure if you knew the substance of those feelings you wouldn’t like me either.

I apologise for not being able to go into the details but I set some rules for myself when I started blogging (using my real name).  There are some things I am simply not able to discuss here because of the impact that could have on other people.

But I don’t think the details really matter.  What this is about it finding a way to do what I tell others to do.  Feelings are just feelings.  They are just are.  But do I accept that when I find myself completely mortified by some feelings, let alone the intensity of them?

I think I did what any self-respecting kiwi does.  Scurry for the undergrowth and hide from predators.  Otherwise those predators (perhaps my judgments on my feelings) will whip my sorry arse.  For US readers read “ass”).  Hmm.

Meanwhile I would like to thank my friend Kevin for coming out looking for this missing kiwi.  I think I needed that.  Thank you Kevin.  I’m not sure how long I was planning on staying there.  And a big thank you to Frank for holding my hand in the dark.

And now I’ve been in day light too long, my eyes are hurting again,  and it’s time to find my darkened room again.

Hope is the feeling that the feeling you have
isn’t permanent.

 – Joan Kerr


22 thoughts on “Foraging In Dark Places

  1. I;m sorry to hear about your eyes Cate. Also – about the medication – as you know I’ve just started a round of meds – it’s been close to a month now I think – and for the moment I don’t “feel” anything. I no longer have suicidal thoughts or violent ones, I am much calmer in appearance and on the inside. I literally feel nothing. Not happy, not sad, not angry, not guilty…but the one symptom that has stayed with me is that I still really do want to just sleep all the time and shut the world out and never leave my house. I don’t know why I’m telling you – I guess so you know you’re not alone. Kia kaha darling Cate

    1. Thank you for telling me. Actually it does help to know I’m not the only one. But you know I hate that feeling nothing. I hate that more than anything. I hope it passes for you soon. Right now I still have too many feelings in my head, and I hope they pass soon, Kia kaha to you too. Maybe it will get us through. ❤

  2. Another friend was talking to me yesterday about depression and control, self-control. And it got me thinking that maybe our (humans) biggest problem is that we just think to much. Animals don’t get depressed – they just do what they can, enjoy what they can… and live like a Kiwi? Yes, I agree totally. In fact, I think we all need to think more like Nature and less like humans. Humans might be smart, but we aren’t wise. Nature gets it right – trust, follow the harmony and balance, sleep when you’re tired, eat when you’re hungry – find joy in small things.


  3. Hang in there Cate,,,the light is there somewhere and you will get thru those feelings.
    Sorry to hear about your eyes,,,have you tried those glasses that people use when they have strokes??

    1. Actually I have thought of those yesterday. I might have to resort to those yet. They might become a fashion statement too. 🙂 I hope you are well. I am behind in my reading so I haven’t read your recent posts except I remember that you got a parcel the other day (actually it was probably weeks ago). It sounds like it is going good with your man. yay! 🙂

  4. Dorothy

    sorry to hear this is happening to you and I hope it passes quickly….you don’t need the added pain and discomfort on top of it all

  5. Hi Cate,
    Can’t believe we haven’t bumped into each other hiding down here in the undergrowth!? 🙂 i’ve been worse psychologically recently than ever before but i know everyone is affected in different ways and to different degrees by the hurdles they have in front of them. but we’ll get there, that might be a blind belief but hope, while hard to cling to at times, is about all that’s left right now. take care

    1. Thanks, and I am disappointed we haven’t bumped into each other yet. I’l’ try and keep my eyes open because it is always good to know I’m not alone. You’re right about that hope. That’s what I’m clinging to too. One day… both you and I will see the sun again. 🙂

  6. Cate I am sorry about your eyes, that must be so difficult.
    Emotional work can make us very tired, at least that is what I find. It impacts my CFS/ME and seems to lower my immune system. Also sometimes I find when it is hard very painful work after a while I need a little respite from the day to day norm and I think that’s okay and to be expected. Feelings can be so deep and it can be hard to face what we are feeling. I know anger is a hard one for me to accept along with others. I think though we have to work through our feelings to release them and lessen them “name the demons” so to speak and lessen their power. Sometimes the emotional pain for myself at least is a physical pain in my chest and at the moment that is how my week has been because of doing the emotional work.

    Thank you for sharing this though because it helps others who understand or at least can partly empathise because none of us can fully know the others pain/hurt. I hope I pray you feel supported and not alone. That you feel able to keep going forward as you explore those feelings. I pray you are kind to yourself Cate. We all have positive and negative emotions and you may not feel like a nice person but don’t believe yourself or others that you are not. You are a nice person I can tell that just by your blog and your comments. I read in another blog this quote from Beth Moore and it is helping me with where I am at maybe it will resonate with you to:

    “Stay face to face with God. Wrestle it out. Keep talking, even if that day you don’t have anything nice to say.” Beth Moore.

    Do you know God is big enough to take it.

    Take care. Smiles.

  7. John Richardson

    One step at a time Cate. Don’t try to think too far ahead and don’t forget that you can listen to music in the dark. God Bless!

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