Mirror Mirror

I guess the best way to open this blog is by saying this: I have spent the majority of my life feeling like shit about myself. 

Which is strange, because I actually like myself, and it seems other people do too.  I have always done well in school; I graduated high school with high honors and attended a great college.  I competed at the varsity level in multiple sports and was also heavily involved in music.  I have always worked hard, made great friendships, taken care of everyone around me, had a great sense of humor and have generally done well in life.

However, no matter how much I accomplished, I never felt worthy of the praise I was receiving.  I never felt that I should be called a “great friend” or a “stand-out athlete”.  In fact, most of the time I didn’t want people to recognize me at all.  I was stuck in a strange paradox where I felt lonely and wanted someone to comfort me, but I also wanted to melt into a giant puddle so that no one could see me.

I felt this way because, in my mind, I was too ugly to be important or even to be loved.  When I looked in the mirror, I saw someone who wasn’t up to standard.  Not only did I not look like those girls in the magazines, I didn’t even think I looked average.  What I saw in the mirror was hideous.  

It’s hard to live when you fear the world.  When you believe that everyone is staring at you.  When you convince yourself that you are not good enough.  I thought I could never succeed looking the way I did, regardless of how much success I had already come upon in my life.  I would never get married, never find a great job, never be able to step out of my comfort zone and really live my life.  And, as our minds are powerful things, that’s exactly what happened.  I didn’t go anywhere.  I had a hard time keeping a job, I was constantly tired and ill, I lost contact with many of my friends, I lost all desire to do anything.  I could barely keep up with the bare minimum to survive.

Not only was I protecting myself from the world, but I was protecting the world from me.  No one should have to put up with looking at me, or dealing with my discontent.  Those people I did interact with only saw my happiest moments.  I became superb at putting on a brave face and making my way to work, going out to a birthday party, or having visitors stay over for the weekend.  I was able to take small doses of normalcy, but living as everyone else did was out of the question.  It was hard going from the “perfect” young woman to someone who could barely keep her head above water.

I finally decided that I needed to stop the madness.  I wanted to live on my own terms.  I wanted to stop worrying about how I looked.  I didn’t want the media to determine how I felt about myself.  In fact, I didn’t want anyone to tell me whether I fit in, whether I was pretty enough, whether I was ugly or fat or nowhere near perfect.  I wanted to start living life from the inside out.  Meaning, I wanted to start taking care of myself on the inside – focusing on my health, my happiness, my personality, my goals and the love I have for my closest friends and family.

So, I moved home to live with my dad.  He has stood by me in my worst times, and has also known me at my best ~ I knew that he would support me through thick and thin.  I wanted to start with a clean slate, and moving away from everything that was making me so unhappy was the first step.  I have been home for a while now, and though I have learned a lot and made quite a bit of progress, I still have a ways to go.  I am a generally happy person, but I do have to fight to make each day count.  I have to fight the mirror, fight to get out of bed, fight to take care of myself.  So far, it has been worth it.  I am starting to live my life again.

I want things to be even better than they are now.  There is no reason to settle for “fine” or even “good”.  I want to live a GREAT life.  I want it to be full of happiness and love.  I want to enjoy every day as much as I can.  I know that this will not happen in one day, or even one month.  I want to use this blog to keep myself accountable; to write about my journey, what I have done so far and how I continue to work towards a better life.  I also hope that I can, somehow, help others who are going through the same struggles.  You are beautiful.  You are worthy.  Together we can fight the status quo.  We can fight society and the media.  We can win these battles and overcome all obstacles.

We can love ourselves and love each other.  We can be happy.  We can live.

No comments:

Post a Comment