Several years ago I found myself suddenly surrounded with opportunity to develop my self confidence again. It all started the first moment I stepped on that Greyhound to return home, back to Oregon, in the winter of 1999. For the next 9 years the love I was surrounded with just grew and grew. My value stopped being in question. Even through divorce and loss I was gaining, not losing.
Yet that would soon start changing. The change was slow to be noticeable on my end at first, because of the confident security in which things had been built around and within me over such a long period of time. Yet, little by little, for about the past 5 years, the change has grown to a fervor pitch, where I have been continually slapped, - left, right, up, down and every which way, from every direction I can see and many of those I cannot. Slapped hard by those whom profess deep love for me, as well as those whom barely know me. Slapped with assumptions of my confidence being nothing more than arrogance. The passionate presentation of my confidence quickly becoming seen as a braggart of righteousness; no matter the fact I never brag and strive to remain humble to the goals all are working towards.
This is why those slaps really confused me; I kept asking after each one, "How can anyone see me this way?"
I tried to ask directly and was always met with silence. So I started asking the silence. It never had anything good to say in response. Neither did the rumor mill, which seemed to be the only voices, outside of the silence, bothering to answer the question.
Answers which aided me in welcoming back to front and center anxiety!
So it was, with silence and rumors, I tore myself apart; finding only a small handful who saw and worried about the damage I could be causing myself. If it wasn't for them, well, it would have been so easy to just let go of everything I had filled my heart with for all those years, everything that had helped me build my self-confidence; letting it just disappear and letting it all go.
Though, as Frou Frou attests, there is definitely "beauty in the breakdown."
As painful as it all was, I have come out the other side of it with my confidence still in tact, and admittedly, greatly strengthened. Anxiety retreating back into the shadows as I can understand many of the things that may trigger it. Because of this understanding, I am able to work on controlling my reactions to these triggers; no longer overreacting as often nor finding problems with myself that are not truly there.
From being made to feel an Outsider in my own life.
To Letting Go and going through a breakdown.
To spending most of my time with Sadness once again.
To being supported by a few whom constantly reassured me that I am not a Problem Girl.
To being reminded by those few how Madly Loved I am.
To What I Found Out, alone within the silence of the darkness.
To finding my Torch Song once again; my light.
To remembering the only love I know how to give.
To recognizing that In The End there is nothing more to life than love, is there?
And, in the end, This Isn't Everything I Am ...
This isn't everything you are either. This is just a moment. Just a moment, a breath, an emotion, a creation of a memory that may soon be forgotten ... or may last your entire life.
In the end, your entire life is just a moment as well. One solitary moment for you to try and fail at, over and over again. For you to lose and find your way in. For you to come out of and crawl into the darkness of. For you to be the fool and be made the fool. For you to love and for you to forgive. For you to break a heart and repair one. For you to hold a hand and lose another.
A moment to love.
Songs and artist used in this post, listed in order of appearance:
The Outsider by A Perfect Circle
Let Go by Frou Frou
Hello Sadness by Lucero
Problem Girl by Rob Thomas
Love Her Madly by The Doors
What I Found Out by MissAnneThrope (from PDX!)
Torch Song by Joey Kneiser
Bruised Ribs by Joey Kneiser ft. Kelly Kneiser and Todd Beene
In The End by Snow Patrol
This Isn't Everything You Are by Snow Patrol
I include this list because Youtube often loses videos and these songs are important to the train of thought in this post.