So, if you are a person who notices things, you may have noticed that i haven’t changed my facebook cover photo in a year, which is odd for me, because I like to decorate EVERYWHERE for any occasion. The message on my cover photo came to me last Christmas season, in a time when I really needed it.
I suffer, no, I FIGHT depression, and Anxiety. I choose not to say suffer, as I want people to know it’s a fight, not simply a burden. it affects me every day, in every corner, and 365 days ago, i was pretty deep in a hole. I didn’t believe in myself. I didn’t love myself, I didn’t see nearly as much worth in myself as those around me daily tried to convince me of.
I got this message, and a challenge started in my brain, and I took some action, and put myself on a road of self discovery, and started to change the thinking processes I’ve held tightly for so many years.
365 days ago, i was barely holding on by a thread, I missed my dear friends who live so far away. I was feeling some serious rejection that was unfair and mean. I was tired, out of shape, overweight and tired. I didn’t see myself as anything important, even being a mom to me didn't seem like such a big deal. It was so “easy” and methodical and “just what i do” it didn’t seem that significant. My brain threw facts at me, it replayed the lovely things my family and friends said to me, to try to convince me that I was something to be proud of, but none of it could get through the fog, or the doubt, or the darkness. Anxiety takes over then, and I become unable to cope with social occasions, simple getting coffee with someone was such a mountain, the only thing that helped was screen time, when I could just go blank and not think, or a drink, or 4.
365 days ago, I decided God has a plan, and no matter what, I was going to stay in ready mode. I needed to be around to see it, I needed to be someone He could use. I needed a new source of strength.
365 days ago, I decided to cut alcohol from my diet, for a year. To break some bad habits, to work on dealing with social anxiety like an adult, to find myself, under all the masks.
356 days ago, I was getting ready to start heavy training for a half marathon, CRAZY.
365 days ago, I wasn’t really sure what my idea of God was. Or how He fit into my daily life.
In the past 365 days, I haven’t been drinking, (much) There were some events, weddings, retirement, vegas, a half marathon, a couple things where a drink was celebratory, not the only way to get through socializing. It was hard, REALLY hard, i am, no, was, really bad at small talk, and being social. However, in this last year, I have found out that I can be a normal chatty human, and socialize with people like every once else. Yes it takes a lot out of me, but it doesn't kill me, and people actually seem to enjoy being around me. yeah I was shocked too. :)
In the past 365 days, I have embraced my parenting skills. I’m, chaotic, unorganized and a little nutty, but you know what? Who cares?! My husband is solid, and task oriented, and we work well together, and we both want the same outcome. To raise awesome humans. So, it all works out. I have been a lot more relaxed, just being ok with who I am. I have nothing to live up to, I am a grown up, I grew up to be this person, and this person is pretty darn awesome. I like her a lot.
In the past 365 days, I trained, and ran a half Marathon. That is correct, I ran 13.1 miles. I found an ability to tell myself i could do it, to believe it, and to achieve it. In the training process i kept finding myself doubting, and then talking myself out of it. No running to the TV, no beer to drown the anxiety, just me, and the road, and having to just believe that I could do it, and i DID!
In the past 365 days I have had a spiritual awakening. I put myself in places that felt uncomfortable, but I knew it was part of that path God wanted me on. I knew if I wanted to see His plan, I needed to do these things. I joined a Moms Bible study. I got Baptized along with my daughter. I remembered what it felt like to be a kid, who was oblivious to the pain of the world, and just happy. I re-connected to God, I heard his message of Love, and it overwhelmed me so much that it changed my thinking. My thinking about EVERYTHING. The world looks so different to me now, I just want to help people, to love people, and have them know this LOVE that i have re-discovered. It’s such a crazy feeling!
In 365 days, I have discovered new things about myself that I like, things that i need to work on, things that aren’t such a huge deal, that I really need to just get over. I have missed wine with steak diner, and real beer while watching football. (I have a 6pack chilling for the packers game on Sunday) I started weight watchers, and thanks muchly to Braces, I am doing really well! :D I am proud of myself for the control I have taken over my mind. I still have a laundry list of things about myself that need work, but not stressing about it, I’m not worried so much about what people think. I’m getting back to my old “water off a ducks back” self of the late 90’s (yeah, I’m THAT old :P)
In 365 days, life has changed for me, a year ago today, such a different frame of mind from what I have today. I kept the verse as my facebook cover for a year to remind myself that I was doing serious work. Well, I have done serious work, and I have serious fruit, and now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m gonna take that fruit, and make some wine. ;)