The Before Me and The New Me

Jan 23, 2015 by

The Before Me and The New Me
Dealing with Anxiety, before and after
As I age, mature rather, I think it’s gotten better. My anxiety. Or at least now that it has a name I feel a little more in control of it.

When I was younger, not so much younger even but the “before” me, yes, let’s call her that: “The Before Me”…..
When I was The Before Me I worried what people thought of me.
I worried that I would never be loved, really loved by a man. I worried that I wasn’t good enough, smart enough, ambitious enough. I was stuck in a rut and the saddest part of it is I thought I wanted to be in that rut. I was convincing myself a little bit at a time, that I deserved to live in the shadow of someone else’s life. I was killing my spirit, day in and day out, in the mundane way of people who don’t have the courage to change their situation. The Before Me was content to muddle through, not really having the things in life she desired, but rather just accepting things at face value…. and that compounded the panic.

The eternal suffocation The Before Me felt all the time was piling up on itself because I worried what people would think of me if I changed. The Before Me was pretty much crap. She really was. In addition to being crap, The Before Me  also treated people like crap, forgot to pray, didn’t have a plan, and felt inferior to everyone who seemed to have their lives going smoothly. The Before Me would get all angsty and claustrophobic and try to outrun problems, only to have them come right back in and settle down around her again. The Before Me was pretty darn awful.
The Before Me was waiting for someone else to make her happy.
Waiting and waiting and waiting…. and the truth of the matter is, I believe that someone else was waiting for me to make them happy too. I’m sorry for that, but with age comes wisdom and the knowledge that the only person who can make you truly happy is yourself.
It’s taken me much longer than I would like to admit, but I am better now. I tend to gravitate toward people who love me, who choose me, who make me feel good about myself. I sparkle more. I have learned how to say no, but also yes. Saying yes feels good. I needed someone to choose me even though I didn’t feel worthy of being chosen. I’m still overcome with doubt sometimes. My heart still races and the anxiety kicks my butt once in a while. I have misgivings, socially awkward moments, and fear…. but The Before Me has taken a backseat to The New Me.

The New Me is loved and in control and so, incredibly, happy.

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