Thursday, May 31, 2012

Note to self: trust me on this one.

Dear Teenage-Me,

I know what it's like. All the negative self-talk? It's a lot of noise and it's distracting and it's consuming and, worst of all, it's all lies.

Let me clarify: I am you. And I wish I could explain in a way that you would truly hear me. But I know all that negative self-talk is loud. Louder than I can be from 20 years in the future. So instead, let me at least add my commentary?

"I need to be skinny because...."

Let me stop you right there. You don't NEED to be anything other than YOU. And who you are? Has nothing to do with how you look. Period.

".... I want people to like me."

If someone likes or dislikes you based on your size, shape, height, weight, hair color, skin color, etc, what concern is it of yours? You don't need people to validate your worth by validating your appearance. You? are awesome. And all that awesomeness? has NOTHING to do with what size you are.

Don't judge people for how they look and don't tolerate others that do.

You're better than that.

And better than worrying about what others think of you, okay?

".... I want a guy to fall in love with me."

Really? If that's the reason someone falls in love with you then they will fall OUT of love with you just as quickly. Because that isn't love. You don't judge people by the way they look - remember? We totally just covered that. Why would you want someone who does to "love" you? Those people? are ugly on the inside. And that kind of ugly rarely changes.

".... I want to stop calling myself fat."

Then stop. No, really, STOP. NOW. It's that simple. You're calling yourself that because - in your mind - it's the absolute WORST thing a girl could be. And you think you ARE that. You're letting a three letter word define who you think you are. And worse than that? You're perpetuating the idea that fat = bad, fat = ugly, fat = worthless, fat = not good enough. And you are WRONG.

".... I want to be someone's idea of perfect."

First of all, you already are. But I'll give you a pass on not understanding that until you've had a child of your own. How about just embracing yourself as the perfect YOU? No one else is exactly quite like you. You bring a light and beauty to this world that no one else will ever duplicate.

".... I don't want to be the fat-friend anymore."

Then don't be! Be the friend with the gorgeous eyes or fabulous hair or awesome-fashion-sense. Be the friend with the smile that lights up a room. Be the friend who people come to for advice. Be the friend who loves life. Be the friend that people can trust. Be the friend whose inner light shines. Be the friend who knows her worth. Be the friend who reminds her friends of *their* worth.

Just be yourself. And don't be defined by a size.

".... I want my stomach to be flat, I want my hipbones to poke out, and I want my thighs not to touch."

Who looks like that?! Even people who "look like that"? Don't look like that. Seriously. Go look. Don't buy the hype. (You're smarter than that, too.)

".... I want to think positive things when people are looking at me."

Chances are? The only person thinking negative things about you, is you. Most of the time? People are too busy with their own negative self-talk to worry about someone else. Everyone has their own issues and insecurities. Everyone. I promise. We're all walking through this world praying to go unnoticed and be noticed, at the same time.

It's complicated.

".... I want to be able to tell myself I'm beautiful and believe it."


You silly girl.

You young, vibrant, beautiful, gorgeous, silly girl.

You ARE beautiful. But that has very little to do with your size. Youth fades. Physical beauty? That fades too. Being "skinny"? Christ, that can disappear at any moment, regardless of your age.

But all of that is dynamic. It changes. It comes, it goes, it may never return.

Embrace your inner beauty. Let your inner light shine. Believe in your beauty. BELIEVE in yourself.

Silly girl. Someday you'll look back at the radiant beauty you are now and wish you could give that girl-you-were a hug and whisper in her ear: "you are good enough, you are beautiful, and you are loved."

Trust me.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Fuck. this. shit.

I started crying in the hallway of school today - fortunately between periods and I managed to make myself look preoccupied when kids did come wandering by (what's that hanging on the wall? oh yes, incredibly fascinating...). I left my office because I had already hit the point where being-alone-with-whatever-song-might-come-on-Pandora-next was the emotional equivalent of russian roulette. So I got up to walk around. And there I was, tears streaming, right in the hallway.

The HALLWAY, people. 

Of a high school. 

Full of teenagers.

(yep, never a dull moment) 

I'm weening off some of my meds and I'm tackling my anti-anxiety med first. Why? Meh, it seemed like the best (and safest) one to start with. Also, coincidentally, it's the worst one for me to be on long term. I'm down to half my regular daily dose. 

First came the return of the twitches. Little spams, or tics, in the muscles of my arms, legs, and torso. Basically anywhere is fair game, but it's the larger muscles that do it. Enough to make me visibly jerk. It's embarrassing and annoying at times but manageable. Livable. However, that's far from the worst of it. 

My startle reaction is also in high gear. Totally out if control. Meaning, any loud sound or unexpected stimulus makes me jump. Like, literally jump in surprise. I look like a spaz. (hey, there's a word you don't see enough: spaz. Apparently it's 1992. You know, in my head.)

For me, anxiety doesn't manifest in panic attacks. Not usually anyway. It's this constantly tensed state. Like my fight-or-flight reaction got stuck in the "on" position. But that constant state of "whatthefuckisgoingon" is incredibly draining. Like, insanely so. And instead of that energy ramping up into a panic attack, it usually results in crying.

Why crying? Seriously, beats the hell out of me. 

I'm not a cryer. I really dislike it actually. Not because I'm all, "I'm too tough to cry" but just because I'm not a cryer. I'm not overly emotional to begin with. It's just not me. But anxiety? Anxiety apparently likes to cry. And if I try to stop it? That's when the panic attack sets in. My breathing constricts, my heart races, and I basically feel like I will pass out. 

It's FUN. 

In the hallway...... *sigh*

Seriously? I don't have the energy for this shit.