Countless times I’ve sat at this screen, trying to figure out what I have to say to the world.
Honestly, the last few months have been a complete whirlwind. So many things, good and bad, have happened; I don’t really know where to begin.
My company is no longer a startup, we were acquired and so now I’m working for a big company again — I don’t know how I feel about that just yet.
I went to China with my ex’s mom and sister, which was fun but also sad because it shows how much Miana is growing up.
Derek and I are still together, still in San Francisco, still pretty happy.
The major part of why we’re not completely happy is mostly because of my anxiety, which has come back with a vengeance. It actually started coming back toward the end of last year, but lately it’s gotten a lot worse. I’m seeing my doctor two times a week, which feels honestly like a complete failure to function, but I know it’s for the best. I’m also back on medication (Prozac), which feels even more like a failure, but my doctor has assured me that it’s only temporary. She tells me she knows I can get better and that she’s going to be there to help me. And I’m trying very hard to believe her.
It’s hard to write about this sort of thing. There are some very deep emotions that are coming up during my sessions, and I know if I were to write honestly and openly about them some people would end up getting offended or angry, and right now I don’t think I’m strong enough to deal with that sort of backlash.
The biggest problem, of course, is that I’ve somehow convinced myself, throughout the past twenty-five years, that I only exist as a representation of what other people think of me. If someone thinks I’m stupid, annoying, ugly, etc, then obviously I am, because I can’t summon up any sort of argument against it. I am only the sum of everyone else’s thoughts — from the people I’m closest to, my friends, my family, Derek, to the people I never see again, the people on the bus, the barista at Starbucks, the tourists on the cable car. I am what you all have made me. But I’m not happy about it.
I’m not happy with this existence at all. My anxiety is ever-present and overwhelming. Even simple things like commuting to work are full of worry, doubt, fear. I overanalyze and overthink quite literally everything. Even right now I’m worrying that people will think I’m out of my mind or less of a person when they read this entry, that they’ll slowly distance themselves from that crazy girl who writes her deepest, innermost thoughts and discusses her anxiety disorder and chronic depression publicly on her blog.
But I can’t give in to those worries, I have to keep telling myself that. I can’t say with certainty that anyone is going to read my blog after this. I can’t say with certainty that anyone is going to stick with me at all through this whole process. And somehow I have to be okay with that uncertainty. I know that’s what I have to do, but saying and doing are two entirely different things for me.
I call it The Disconnect. It exists as a wedge between what I know to be true or logical, and what I feel. A great example of this: my looks. I know I’m fairly conventionally attractive — I have an hourglass figure, I’m not overweight by any means, and I look generally healthy. But I don’t feel attractive. I sometimes even blatantly gawk at the fact that Derek, who I find exceptionally attractive, could possibly find me even merely cute, let alone “beautiful.” He tells me pretty often that I am, but somehow I just can’t feel it, I just can’t believe it. Sure, there are moments when I do feel pretty good about the way I look, but those are anomalies to me; they’re not the norm. And no amount of people telling me otherwise is going to help that, honestly. I have to find a bridge over The Disconnect, or a zip tie I can use to cinch the two sides together.
So there’s both of those. The feeling that I’m nothing but how others perceive me, and the disbelief that anyone could possibly see me in a positive way. It’s frustrating and disabling, and I’m tired of it, but I don’t know how to fix it.
That’s where I am right now. I know there’s something wrong here, and I’ve taken the first steps to try to fix it. But it’s going to be a very long process, it seems. (And why shouldn’t it be? It took 25 years for all of this to add up, I can’t just expect it to disappear in 25 sessions, right?) And that uncertainty probably bothers me most of all — I’m stuck worrying even more. Is the medication working? Am I getting better? Am I going to be on medication forever? What if I want to have children someday? What if I’m just overthinking all of this? (That one is terrifying.)
But I’m working on it. It’s going to get better. I’m going to keep telling myself that.
Photos from this post taken at the Japanese Tea Garden in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco. More can be seen on my Flickr.