I can’t, will not be of that … How’s that imaginary wall in your head keeping you away from…what?

Be humble, bow down, don’t speak up. That’s what I grew up with. Some I’m sure my parents believed in, and some; due to their fuckedupness might have actually destroyed them and me. The lying cheating alcoholic of a dad wanted me to be the best ever; smartest, quickest at all I do…just not want any affection or support or him being actually present, as he was, well, otherwise occupied. And the cold-hearted robot of a mom who was always there seemed to take pleasure in my emotional suffering. Oh you are getting good grades? “You aren’t as smart as you think” Oh, you made friends? “They will all leave you in the end” Oh, you are dating someone new “men in our family leave us”. Oh you broke up? “Men don’t like what you do”

Dealing with that shit. Dealing. With. That. Shit.

Restrictions. This shit builds complex, hard to break restriction in your mind. Walls that filter our any other messages. Silence the teachers, the friends, and more importantly the inner voice – that’s your parents ya’ll. That’s what counts as you “hear” – restrictions. There might be others telling you they like you, love you, appreciate you, but all you can hear is “you are not good enough. No one loves you. Stop trying”.

In fact, there’s a voice you hear if you go against their damage.

Let’s break that down. Voice. Their damage. It is their voice, about their damage. It is not a rando in a bar telling you their life story, it is a key figure in your life telling you their life story for years, decades. It is about them reflecting their shit on you; their experiences resulted in their shit – clearly you should expect the same experiences and therefore the same shit.  

What that does: Restrictions. It is in your head, your mind.

What you need to do: Question that shit. Question the shit out of that shit.

If you are like me you were conditioned to certain attributes with certain behaviours. It can be as stereotypical as “you are a girl/woman, you are supposed to, not supposed to xyz”. Or just more creative ways of telling you are not capable of it, and definitely not worth it.

Let’s have a more objective, oh-have-I-grown-up -chat with them …things I should have said…

  • “Stop crying, you are only looking for attention” – my mum to me after my granddad died –> yes, I’m crying, I’m sad. I’m fucking sad, and I’m fucking allowed to be. Hug me for fucks sake
  • “You are not as smart as you think” – my mum to me after I got first place in class  –> I see you hate my dad for whatever reason. Yes, I share some traits with him, one being pretty damn smart. That also means knowing when I’m not smart enough, and when I can kick a 4th grader in the ass. I am smart, I know the shit I’m talking about. I know my shit. Shut, the fuck up. Be proud of me
  • “They will all forget about you” – my mum to me with me making new friends in college –> not my damage, mum. It might have been your experience, and it might very well be mine. That’s life. No need to make a “all hate you” – performance about it. I have friends that understand and stand by me, few of them even for years and years. Should they leave me, I’d like you to be there for me
  • “He is too good looking for you” – my mum after seeing a pic of one of my exes –> really mum? I’m not pretty? Smart? Lovely? Not worthy of a good looking person? …the fuck you are a mum for? Ask me if he makes me happy
  • “Men don’t like what you do” – my mum to me when I found out the man I was dating had slept with another woman –> I cry in front of my mum and hope for a question of “what’s wrong”. The silence and coldness that pursued led for my comment “I had to break up with a guy”. Her comment, not a question, “men don’t like what you do” –> would love a hug on my side! …further questions, caring, being on my side no whatever what…acknowledge and support the crying child in front of you, you bitch! Seriously, Really mum? I’m not pretty? Smart? Lovely? …the fuck you are a mum for? Guess I’ll just hit him up for a random hookup and fuck his brains up. Love? Nah. Fuck off.

The hate, the fucked up mental models, and the sense of your own worth is too often tied up with mental models that aren’t yours, mental models that don’t support you going forward.

What you do? You listen. You accept. You build your base on what the fucked up people say. And then you fucking keep building.

What you do as of 10,20, 30, 40, 50 years from that is tell them, at least in your head, to fuck off.

What you aim for is for those 10, 20, 30, 40, 50 years from now is to stand your ground. Be proud of your choices, whether a success with a happy ending or a complete clusterfuck; or a combination of the two. What you aim for is you owning that shit. You owning your actions.

So. Break those mental models and weird as “rules”. Fight the voices in your head that tell you no, cheerlead the voices that tell you yes – fight them all! Here are some examples:

  1. Crying. Cry your fucking eyes out if you want to. Do it! Share your hopes and dreams and vulnerabilities. If you are lucky someone somewhere will bring a bottle of wine and join you on it, the people online certainly will – We’re broken people now……
  2. Friends. Make them, make new, make millions. Reach out, touch, share. You are not alone. We got you – Don’t be creapy though….just. don’t…
  3. Success. Fuck aim for only whatever you need, aim for what you want. Get the money, the title, the reach, the happiness or the enlightment. The Hugo Boss in your feet is fine, you deserved it, paid for, worked for it. Don’t apolize for it.

Step 4 that should be1. Not the Hugo Boss, but the not apolozing for it. Free your mind, free yourself. Don’t let other people’s walls keep you out from your happiness.

Criss-crossing on that border of mind

“Just do it” fucking sucks as a statement. It is one of those things only I am allowed to tell myself, maybe the one or two people closest to me as well. Others; fuck off. …unless you actually know what I’m going through.

Here are the things I cannot “just do”:

-answer your message

-open a random door

-attend your whatever event

-meet you and your friend

-answer your call

-try a new meal

-clean my apartment

-go to the store

-care about my physical well-being

-make my bed

-have a shower

-take out my trash

-not have a drink

-not have sex with random strangers

-get my shit together

Want to know why? Here’s why:

-answer your message; my anxiety cannot deal with the potential requirements your message comes with; needing to call you, answer you, meet you. If I don’t answer you, will you hate me forever? I do not have the mental capacity for these questions

-open a random door; I have control issues, new doors with unknown things behind them freak me out; how and which way does this door open? What’s behind it? What happens next? People will laugh

-attend your whatever event; what should my social anxiety wear for it? The shirts of me cannot have these people looking at me like they hate me and judge me? They will laugh at me

-meet you and your friend; I might love you and trust you, but now you want to force another person on me? How could you do this to me? I thought we were friends…you having another person with you is you putting me on the “need to pretend I’m great” zone even if you know I’m not. Are you betraying my trust in you by having your “friend” see my mental breakdown you know will happen? Do you hate me?

-answer your call: fuck off. Let me have my peace and time to collect myself and my thoughts. Don’t force me to quick pretend to be happy

-try a new meal; you know I don’t like new things. If I try a new meal I know you will be looking at me, watching me as I taste it. You are looking at me to hate it so that you can laugh at me

-clean my apartment: Just clean my apartment? Yes it is a mess. There are pizza boxes, dirty underwear and dust all around. I have long hair so yes, my shower drain is full, you can see the bundles of hair on my floor. Have not done the dishes in a week or two, these disposable ones work fine. And the bottles of wine? Yup, all around. I’m sure your apartment is great.

-go to the store: There are days when I cannot even get out of my bed except to go to the bathroom and receive the take out I just ordered. There are days when all I want is to stay in my bed in the darkness. I might watch Netflix, I might order food in. Glad you can walk around as you want

-care about my physical well-being: Not. Not at the top of my list. My head is not right, the heart even less. My body? Would I give a shit? No. I can’t even get out of my bed.

-make my bed – I will sleep in it, now, and next day night and day. I can barely get to the bathroom. Why would i make my bed? Who is going to see it?

-have a shower – I think my best is around 8-9 days without shower. I will lie in my bed thinking I’m fine until I start thinking I smell, after a few days of that I will shower, if I really really smell

-take out my trash – The pizza boxes, or quick food, or anything really. They will pile up. As long as I can step over or around them I am fine.

-not have a drink – Should I not drink? I want to forget the world, I want to forget me. I will drink, I will drink now and I will drink tomorrow

-not have sex with random strangers – I go to bar and grab a stranger, or even better yet, use Tinder for it; sex delivered at home. Do I necessarily remember it the next day? No. I just needed to be close to someone, I needed the sex.

-get my shit together- On it. Dickhead.

Let’s get this straight. Living with mental illness is messy. It comes with concrete messy things of dirty underwear on the floor, messy actions of getting black out drunk at office events, and messy aftermath of messages on your phone you have no recollection of. It comes with days and weeks of disappearing, calling sick for work, not replying to your friends. It comes with being unable to complete the simplest of things of taking out the trash or making your bed.

I’ve been there, done that, living there. I have been diagnosed with clinical depression, general anxiety disorder and social anxiety – that I know of. I am in therapy and my therapist might have a diagnosis or two to add to this. I’m not new to this though, this has been years of me. I’m living with it, making progress I hope, while having my ups and the sure deep downs.

The more I have worked on my problems, the more I speak to others about them, I realize I am not alone. And if I’m not alone, it means you are not either.

Mental health is like balancing in a bowl on a cone on wheels that’s on a ball that’s constantly turning

Take a wrong step and ooops, backwards you go. But. And here’s what many people don’t get, same works the other way round; make a small step forward and you will feel amazing; you can have the best day ever, cry because the color of the sky is light (not dark) blue again and you can actually take a breath and smell the flowers. You can feel the warmth, the love, the pride, the progress of the one step…and then realize you are balancing in a bowl on a cone on wheels that’s on a ball that’s constantly turning.

It’s. Not. Sustainable. You will not stay in one place, there is no mellow of a mental health problem, it’s not a chill place, it’s not like people are not doing anything to change it. People are, we are. Ever tried on balancing on anything? A board on a rock as a kid, a balancing board as a fitness freak adult, or the funny as balls as a hotshot on Total Wipeout? If you did, or if you want to try it out now (take a 2by4 and a round enough rock, I’ll wait), you will know it takes a shit ton of strength just to keep balanced, just to stay in that one place and not worse.

The energy it takes just to cope. The energy it takes to function. The energy it takes to maintain at least a bit of our social or job or economical or whatever bits of us…the energy is enormous… and if and when we try to change our position, ideally for the better, we are faced with the balancing act again. And! Let’s keep in mind that the world we live in is constantly turning, and not just in a  geographical sense…although I’m pretty sure that’s true as well…stars and whatnot, horoscopes and tectonic plates. K. What I mean is that our social worlds are changing, friends getting more kids and dogs and exes, family members getting more or less annoyed with us, jobs becoming harder and/or more filled with dickheads, tinder dates getting pissed off for…oh what a fun new post this will make! ..The world is not waiting for us to get our shit together. We are not on solid ground. Any move forward will make our legs wobbly, our hearth tremble, our brains panick…can we maintain this new position? Can we move forward? Will we fall backwards? And same with any fallback; we will take the extra panick, anxiety, shame, blame, energy, and first of all, feel like shit for the step backwards, and then for balancing us again, for again one day to move forwards; energy.

And, so, hence, furthermore, moreover, etc.; here’s the extra extra thing. While we feel like we are alone in our bowl we for damn sure also feel the entire world is watching and judging us. So. If you are yourself, or the whole damn other world, reading this you can help shift and keep the balance for you and/or someone for the better. Help, don’t hurt.

Help leave the past behind and move forward, support building the new way around for the better. Actions speak a millions words, but the rigth words will already be worth millions.

You are not alone!

Does losing my fears mean losing me?

Aren’t the fairy tales the worst (…this will make sense by the end of the blog post…maybe…). “Spend time with your fears”, “use your fears as a stepping stone”, “focus on your fears instead of your goals”. Who the fuck says stuff like that?? …for fucks sake…dumb as shit…….. Oh, right, that was my last blog post…the dimwit I was back then…I thought that was actually good advice…thought I’d solve aallll my problems thinking aaaaallllllll my problems were related to being too pretty few years ago… how great I thought this moment would have been where I could write my genius blog post with having solved it all!

Well..it did not quite go that way did it? DID IT? …no, no it did not… and also, get off your high horse you dimwit you…

I actually took my own advice…spent some time, long time with my fears. Sure, one of them is facing all the criticism that would follow if people would see me. I knew it existed. I wrote about it. I was also semi-aware of my fears of being just like my dad; overly sarcastic, charming person who eventually will hurt everyone around them by breaking their promises, cheating on anyone who can be cheated on, etc. etc.. An alchololic. I thought I’d take that on; a friend of mine was starting her annual lent journey; 40 days without alcohol or sweets. I’m in! I’ll prove I’m not an alcoholic!

40 days without any alcohol or any sweets – I did not think I could make it. And why? Here’s why: 1. The only thing I hate more than being told what to do is to be told what not to do 2. 40 days without any alcohol or any sugar; don’t think I’ve had that since I was 13…and that’s just for alcohol…with sugar we would prob have to go back to, I don’t know, when can toddlers have sugar? 3. My dad was an alcoholic and while that’s my mental image of pure hatred, how close am I actually of becoming him…?

Guess what happened? Guess! I made it. It was actually easy. I made it through 40 days without any alcohol and any sugar and I think it was harder on random waitresses than it was on me…

-Waiter: Should we start with a prosecco for everyone?

-Friends:  Yes, yes, yes, yes….

– Me; no, can’t drink alcohol right now

– Waiter: no problem, we have great mocktails

– Me: Sure, but I can’t have any sugar either

-Waiter: oh…let me ask our chef… *questioning all his best service pledges

-Waiter; so here’s a drink with cucumber, lemon and basil

– Me; It’s great *putting on a fake smile and a thumbs up

– Friend who shows up to dinner right after; oh that looks like the best mojito ever!

– Me: ….it’s water… *turning my fake smile into a sigh of deep disappointment

My learnings? Well. Damn right, previous blog post you (me?), I am my biggest challenge. And what this time of proper self-reflection showed me; the fucking fears I knew I need to, and will, deal with are only part of it. I can be without alcohol, I sure need to lose weight. But. Here’s the real shit: I’m afraid of moving on from me. I’m afraid of moving on from what I need to be to survive my past. I’m afraid of letting that me go.

I guess this might not make sense to a lot of people, but maybe it will make sense to some. In a very messed up way of putting it; I knew my life was not a Disney movie, but I needed it to be one. I had to deal with a lot, I went through a lot. I thought I needed to keep to it so that I could be “saved”. I thought I needed to have it, so that I could have my happy ending. And without it? No happy ending. Without it, I’d be one of the normies. They surely don’t get a happy ending, surely not as great as mine. I mean, if you are normal and happy and healthy and not completely fucked up; can you get a knight in a shiny armour to save you, can you save yourself? Is your story worth telling? No, not according to fairy tales. You need to suffer for it.

And oh my…does that not lead you to fucked-up-ville? You need to be properly fucked up so that next you can be happy? You need to stay fucked up so that others see your worth? So that others can look at you with “she went through a lot, it’s a miracle she’s still alive”. AND. If she’s not fucked up, she’s just one of “us”, a normal person trying to make it through life. And want to hear the most random fucked up thing? I’m afraid to give blood because I think my purpose and will to fight is tied to my blood and by giving it away I would give a part of me away! It doesn’t make sense!

What’s my fucked up biggest fear? Losing part of my fuckedupedness. I actually fear that getting better would mean losing part of me. And I do get that, I had to fight to get here, and I fought, and I will fight. But come on….I need to fucking let that fucking fucked up shit go. I for sure need to, and can, use that as a stepping stone to level the fuck up. …damn…

Fuck focusing on hopes and dreams. Deal with fears. Use them as a stepping stone

All these articles about people telling you to set goals and work on them. They are right. You absolutely should visualize your goal, create manageable concrete steps to make it happen and get on it. What’s missing though is your starting point. What’s missing is making sure you are all equipped and ready, realistic, powered up, and made for success, not slipping away. Again, I agree with these articles; making a change is about having realistic goals, realistic assessment of where you are and a plan to get from A to B. What’s missing is the realistic assessment of what’s in our way. Especially, especially! if it’s us in the way.

What if. What if we are our biggest challenge? We can come up with plans and actions for others, for external things, but we might overlook us. We might think we know us, “we’re lazy, can’t keep up with a routine, feel sceptical about …”. But. Dig deeper. Dig deeper.

Before you set to your dreams and stumble and fail to make them happen, think about what’s in your way. It could be time, it could be money, it could be you not waking up early enough in the morning to have a 5km run before work. It could be you not doing something in the now. But. What about you sabotaging yourself getting to your future. What if you, your fear is the block. What if you are actually the one standing in your way? What if you, unconsciously, are preventing you from getting from A to B?

So. As any proper goal setting guide / life coach (I’m so available btw lol) would tell you, let’s start with B. But instead of the normies in the field and their steps to get there, let’s start with the visual. Picture B. Picture your end goal. Tell me what scares you when you think of it. Ever had B, or something close to it? What would B look like? All exciting and great and easy or scary and concerning? What is there waiting for you? If you take the steps to be there, what will it look like? With great accomplishment comes …responsibilities…assumptions…perceptions… in our heads and others, and in our heads about the heads of others.

And the way there? How’s your mind? Supportive? Questioning? Doubtful? Full of aggressive negativity? Either in an actively bad way harming your progress , or with good intentions blocking your way, blocking your future hurt. Whatever your mind’s reasoning we need to have a chat about why are we in our way; to scare, protect, block or sabotage.

So. Let’s have a chat with our mind. Have a conversation.  Write stuff down; What and where do you want to be? Why? And. When you will be what and where you want to be, what will hit you?

  • Been there or close by and got hurt somehow? How?
  • What can hurt you?
  • What can destroy you?
  • What do you need to deal with you don’t have to right now?

Is that what you think might happen? Do you know it will or is that an imaginary scenario in your head? Where’s the proof?

I myself want to be looked up to. I have very humble goals of being the smartest, most respected, prettiest, happiest, most successful person in the world. I love the idea, dream of it. But I’m also very aware of what it comes with; constant visibility and judgment. Each move, each win or mistake will be judged by multiple others, not just in my close circle of friends but with a broader audience. I will be in the spotlight. If I win, it’ll be great. But if I lose, if I make a mistake, I will be laughed at, judged by all.

It’s paralyzing. Strong. Massive. I’m safe for not doing it. I used to live for the change, not giving a s… about what others thought. The past 2-3 years I’ve lived in the convenance and safety of not making waves. I’ve gained tons of weight, lost my fighting spirit, got used to merely existing. I dream of one day being the prettiest, smartest, most respected again. But. That would require me to make a change. That would require me to expose myself to all the internal and external judgment again.

Should I or should I not. Make some waves or purely live by. I see value in both, I understand both. But. If you want to make a difference, it better be your choice for the right reasons, for the right reality. I get just wanting a calm life. I get wanting more. I want more. I do want to make a difference again, and, well, that will require me to face my fears and doubts. It will be scary as hell.

So. My choice. Your choice. Our life. Let fear dominate us, or address it, use it as a building block. Let fear make us stronger, better, smarter (you got it Kanye!), and readier. And I do mean readier. AND if that’s not a word it really should be. I don’t just mean really, I mean reallier.

If you want to make a change, face your fears. Face your mountains of fears. Climb on top of them, step on them. Use them as a view point of all you can be, of all that could and is there waiting for you. All that you can start with if and when you put your fears behind you.

Life inventory – take stock! We’re not where we started from

Stopping. The world stopping. Your head stopping. That’s heaven – part of it at least for me. I’ve spent my life running – not literally running, I’d be in a better shape if I had been, but figuratively running, running away from things and franticly running towards something. I’ve moved across continents to escape my problems and issues – but those fuckers don’t need a plane ticket or google maps to find you, they’ll ride along anyways. I’ve killed myself at work chasing deadlines, “unrealistic” goals, and a title I thought I needed – at the expense of a burnout a few years ago. I’ve been running. Not stopping. Not breathing. Not enjoying. Running.

I’ve been running away from my issues (got plenty of them, you’re smart, I’m sure you’ve gathered that already), trying to climb that career ladder (because validation), and dealing with anxiety, depression, and sooooooooooooooo many issues, so, so many issues. But hey, got a fancy title! I’m a global head of my function in a multinational organization as of last year. Like giving me global responsibility of anything is a great idea… Anyways! I started therapy a few years ago to deal with the forementioned issues, and I have come a long way. But I do still have fun chats with my therapist where I tell her what I’ve done and what I’m about to do and just see her shaking her head in her mind. Her words say “oh of course, I understand”, her eyebrows say “the fuck…again…haven’t we talked about this” and the voices in her head are probably screaming, SCREAMING; “the fuck’s a matter with you!”. …man, it must be tough to be a therapist. At least when I see an idiot at my work I can call them an idiot…

Anyways. Back to the original point. Life inventory. I have come a long way. Partly because of all the running. I did climb that career ladder. But also because of the therapy. I have worked a lot on my head – the harmful mental models, the unhealthy coping mechanisms, the self-sabotaging and the negative voices in my head. They are not gone, but I acknowledge they are there. I’m at a place where I’m living with my damage, still dealing with it and healing from it, but no longer neglecting it or denying it. I’m in a place where I see my life more clearly – what happened and how it impacted me, my behaviours, and my choices. I am in that place where I can stop for a moment, look around, and choose where to go next.

It’s a nice place to stop. A good place to take a breather. Also thanks to COVID – I don’t have my normal excuse of travelling so much for work that I can’t focus on my life. I’ve been able to stop. Breathe. Think. I feel like I’ve just climbed a mountain and I’m sitting at the top of it looking around. I wanted to stop there. I needed to stop there. I wanted to take a moment and see where I’m at, where I came from. I wanted to figure out what’s next.

Interestingly – I picked up a pen and my note pad. I started to write down what defined me – who I’ve always seen myself as. And that was easy. I could easily fill that paper with bullet points of how, and what, had defined me so far:

  • Daughter of an alcoholic father and an emotionally abusive mother
  • Best in class in school
  • Depression, general anxiety disorder, social anxiety
  • Overachiever at work
  • Burnout
  • Always smiling and charming as hell
  • Never felt like I belong anywhere
  • Proud of my capabilities – I’m determined, smart, and resourceful
  • Perfectionist, stoic, afraid to ask for help
  • Poor, barely getting by
  • A chameleon – I will adapt to whatever people or situation I’m dealing with and charm my way through
  • A mental mess – I will open my apartment door with my key, close it, and fall to my knees hysterically crying
  • …All that, and so much more, coupled with a nice selection of unhealthy coping mechanisms!

I do feel like I’m at the point of my life where I can, I should, leave all that behind, use this moment for figuring out what I want to carry forward – where am I headed next, what I want with me, and who I am going forward as. I was trying to write that down – what defines me now. I got stuck. Stuck! I couldn’t write a single thing down. While I can easily write down what I’ve been and where I’m coming from, I cannot define where I’m now or where I’m headed. I don’t know. I started crying. …I do cry a lot… surprisingly a lot…anyone who knows me would be shocked. Back to my point; I wanted to start doing everything else but writing. It took me a good hour or so to pick up that pen and start writing down who I am today. It was easier to live in the cloak of the former me, not easy to open it, break it, step away from it, leave it behind. What I am today, is not what I was before.

Today:

  • I can ask for help – I have plenty of amazing friends who know my struggles and support me, and a therapist who is getting way too comfortable with calling me out on my bullshit
  • I’m not a vulnerable kid anymore – I don’t have to rely on fucked up people to choose for me, I can make my own fucked up decisions, and own them
  • I don’t have to rely on others for money or food or other things – I make enough money to buy things I need and don’t need (my credit card agrees)
  • I don’t have to prove myself at work – got that fancy title that tells people I must know what I’m talking about (works out great in theory….in reality; mixed results)

Looking forward to discussing this particular gem of self-reflection with my therapist and hearing her words say “that’s great! I’m so proud of you” …and seeing her eyebrows say “…….duh…….”. Maybe the voices in her head will go with “there’s hope for this one yet”. And maybe there is?

Reaching the “save game” flag

Ever played Super Mario brothers on Nintendo wii? Or any other applicable video game? …I don’t discriminate, as long as they fit my story… You start the game, you advance, you gather the coins and kill the goombas, and then you die. And have to start again. Try again. Die again. Try again. Die again. Get frustrated, yell at the game, cry, drink some wine, and try again. Fine, it’s a bit too many die-agains, it’s not that hard of a game, but I’m making a point, so listen up. You try, you fail, you repeat. That has been the story of my life. I try, I fail, I try again.

It got to the point where that was my way of living. That’s what I thought I was supposed to do. The only thing I was supposed to do. Maybe you’re the same? And what happens? You bring that with you to everything you do, your work, your hobbies, your friendships, your relationships. You try, you fail, you start again. You even start getting bored with excelling and following through on something because that’s not the game, that’s not what you think you’re supposed to do. You don’t win – you start. It’s the start of the game that excites you, what gets your energies up. Starting something, trying something. You don’t live for the maintaining something or finishing something. You don’t know what that’s like, that seems boring, frighting even. You want to begin. To build. To grow. To jump on innocent turtles and face a horrible death by fire breathing flowers. You don’t know what comes after. But you get good at starting again.

One day you reach the save game flag. A flag that will allow you to skip the first goombas, canons, turtles and evil flowers on your way. One day you don’t have to start from the beginning anymore. You don’t have to start from nothing, you don’t have to have the early fights, go through the struggles or have the challenges you are used to. It’s all done. It’s all over. You don’t have to worry about the first part of your life(s). You can build on, move on. You can continue. You can move onto what comes next – not just surviving but maybe winning (in a non-Charlie Sheen kind of way)?

I’ve been stuck living in my past; playing the damaged girl that comes from a world of pain, starting my life over and over again; new hobbies (from acting to baseball), new universities (been to four), new countries (been to three), new jobs (had six serious ones so far), new “relationships” (let’s not count those). I’ve been living with a mindset of needing to start again, build again. It’s been comforting, the idea of erasing the last try and seeing how this one turns out. “This time I’ll make it work”. I’ve also carried the fights and burdens with me; the dysfunctional family and childhood drama and the baggage that comes with it. I’ve been fighting that over and over again. Trying to start again, to make it different. I’ve been trying to rewrite my origin story. But the thing is, I’ve been so busy focusing on my past, trying to make it right, trying to build that into a beautiful story of survival and happy endings. I didn’t realize, I didn’t understand, I can’t change the past, as capable as I do think I am I don’t have those types of powers. What I needed to understand is my story is far from over, and I needed to accept that. My story, so far, is messy, it’s ugly, it’s dark, it’s twisted, but it got me so far – and it’s far from over. Far from over. Who knows, maybe I’m working towards the pink roses and rainbows part of my story? Maybe that’s what comes next? Now that’s a scary thought!

What I do realize now, today, though, is that I’ve reached the save game flag of my life. I don’t want to start over again, I don’t want to face the demons I’ve dealt with before again. I don’t have to. I’ve fought them, faced them, beat them. I’m sure they’ll still come up every once in awhile to haunt me. But for now. For now. I want to move forward, I can move forward. I’m in a place of my life where I feel like I can breathe, take a mental break, stop for a moment and gather my energy knowing I’ve already achieved what will help me, what will provide me with the foundation for whatever I choose to do next, whatever battles I’ll fight next. And I’m sure there will be battles.

So. Hello part two of my life(s) – looking forward to starting, trying, failing and! eventually succeeding with whatever you bring with you.