So yesterday I said something that was so true and yet so surprising to write… I think my quote was “… I am happier in my own skin than I have been in years…” and while that might sound a bit surprising coming from me the truth in that statement is beyond truthiness.
I frequently describe myself as “relentlessly cheerful” and for the most part I am… or as much as an extroverted introvert can actually be, but there are times when I’m hiding the “not so happy”. I’ve actually been doing that for a very long time… with varying degrees of success… and the unhappy I usually don’t indulge for long and I indulge it in private, where no one can see.
But it’s there.
No, I’m not trying to lay claim to depression or any such seriousness. I’m not among the people who truly suffer from that disease. And I know depression is very real and can most assuredly kill you. I’ve seen it do so. It’s very much a cruel and terrible thing. No, I just get down sometimes… feel overwhelmed… lose direction… and have to take a moment or 12 to process everything that’s flying at me so damned fast. So I curl up within myself, allow myself to be quiet, sad, contemplative, alone – whatever the hell I need, I do it, for as long as I need to, and then I get up, pull up my socks, fix my lipstick, and move on. Because my issues aren’t a disease, they’re just random moments of meh. The occasional need to not be “on”.
Just a part of me.
And we all have them. For me where they’ve come from for the last few years is more complicated. They’ve come from a deep-seated sense of failure. A feeling of unhappiness. A bone-deep dislike of how things in my life are going. And a sense of powerlessness over my path. But not anymore. I started this year with a different mindset. There were many things in my life that were controlling me rather than the opposite. Things that I had welcomed in and made at home that were breaking my heart. And this year I knew it was time to stop them. Stop the hurt. Quit living the fear that comes from feeling like you have no choices. Like this hurt and this feeling of helplessness are all I can ever expect. I finally decided that I had to say no. I finally decided that I have choices. So I chose to say no.
I chose happy.
Finally at last. I had spent several years of not choosing. Not deciding. Just existing. And I was miserable, but no more. Not choosing, not deciding, is actually a choice you make. Don’t know whether you ever considered that but I did. I figured it out. Not choosing meant I chose poorly. Not deciding meant I decided to suffer. So I decided.
I said yes.
And the rest, as they say, is history. And honestly history is frequently written like that, in quick decisions that we make, that change our entire lives entirely. One simple yes, said without any thought, changed everything. Opened up a new path. Brought in new light. And helped me to find my way back to happy. I’m growing again as a person. I’m feeling more confident and less unsure. I know that I don’t know everything but I know that what I do know is valuable. Is a treasure. Is mine.
The saying goes “To everyone you may be nobody but to somebody you are everything”, and that’s my life. I am everything to me. I am what matters to me. I am selfish, I am protective, I am focused, and it’s all aimed at me. I come first. Because it’s time. I have a tendency to love too much. To give too much. Now I’m giving that to me.
I deserve it.
So today, when you read this, ask yourself what you’ve done to love you lately. Ask yourself why you aren’t doing more? Ask yourself why you think you don’t deserve it? And then throw out every one of those ideas that you don’t. Love yourself more. You’re going to open up more of your heart to others by doing it. You’re going to find more of life. You’re going to live more authentically by loving you first, then loving everyone else. Keep in mind… at the end of the day the only person who will be with you to the end is you. You better like you. In fact you better love you.
I love me.
And you and you and you… and even you too… despite your annoying tendencies to overthink and fret about things you can’t control. Oh wait, that’s not you, that’s me… yeah, er, nevermind… I guess I love you too.
Simple yet profound. Sacred and profane. Amazing and mundane. Everything.