Twice now I’ve deleted a post just before hitting “Publish” out of fear of someone else’s reaction (I had the cutest intro paragraph too…). That was supposed to be the entire point of this blog- to post freely and earnestly to aid in my recovery. Of course, no speech is without consequence, but even just the idea of writing instead of rushing to text someone back or editing a picture instead of responding to a Snapchat leaves me in a whirlwind of panic.
For what feels like my entire life, it’s been so ingrained in me to feel like I need permission before doing something, or not doing it, that the anxiety that comes with feeling like I might let someone down feels normal. Suffocating, sure. But also commonplace.
I had planned on taking time away from my phone so that I could respond to text messages all at once and spend the rest of my time focusing on other things. I found this to be too restrictive, however, because touching my phone during “down time” made me feel as though I was lying. The plan now is to look at my phone when I want, put it down when I need, and respond to messages in a timely- but not obsessive- manner.
That thought worries me, but I know in my heart that I am blessed with friends who understand (they’re successful, driven people- they have things to do too), and that I have never lost a friend because of distance or time. I also know that I have a lot of things to focus on right now, throughout my days, which require me to be present and in the moment. And which sometimes exhaust me far too much to respond to every message with the enthusiasm and detail it deserves. Or many times…to respond at all.
If I truly care about someone, I hope that I would vow never to give up on them just because their texts to me slow. Or because when they do respond, it isn’t to everything I say, just part of it. I am grateful to know that my friends and I share this quality. I do not take any of them for granted, and am in awe of the patience and love they grant me.
I am frustrated with myself and my anxiety (at this point it’s a whole being on its own) for not posting what I have written for fear that someone, somewhere, somehow will find in it a source of anger for themselves. Low self-esteem and overall anxiety often prevent me from seeing the rational and understanding nature of the world around me, and lead me to believe that unless I am perfect and act accordingly, I will be a failure in everyone’s eyes, leading them to want nothing to do with me. It hasn’t happened yet, and I wish that I would learn from my experiences, not my fears.
In the end, God knows best and has it all planned out. I trust Him.
And if I can’t be perfect and I’m not enough and the world does indeed open at its core and swallow me up, I’ll just have to find a way to deal with that too.