New Month, New Intentions

Happy September! I am feeling so good today, and felt like writing for a bit here on my lunch break! I am feeling very hopeful for this month; I joined that writing community I previously posted about, I am focusing on my health, and I am still making sure to practice gratitude daily! We have four months left of 2022, and I want to make them count.

Life feels so much better when you live with intention. When you just let life happen to you, it feels chaotic and like there is no sense of control. Granted, there are so many things that are beyond our control, but when you take time to set intentions, check in with yourself, and feel through your emotions, it does help you to feel in control of yourself- which is truly the only thing you can control.

For me, I used to feel like my mind was controlling me, and not the other way around. I have been on my fair share of anxiety medications, and I have seen different therapists; it took years to even get to where I am now, and I know I still have work to do, but I feel like I am finally the one in control of my mind. When I feel like I am anxious or sad or angry, I take a moment to look within and start questioning where it is coming from- this alone has helped me a ton!

This month I will continue on my journey of healing and mindfulness, and I am excited to see what is in store!

Celebrate Yourself

Today is Friday and I am so excited for the weekend! My boyfriend and I are attending a friend’s wedding tomorrow, but other than that I am free to relax and take some time for myself. After how busy last weekend was for me, I am happy to be able to slow it down a bit while still having the opportunity to see friends and have a good time!

I was doing a bit of reflecting yesterday and I am honestly so proud of how far I have come on my mental health journey; I was thinking about how I was when I first moved out with my boyfriend and it truly feels like night and day. I still have plenty of work to do, but now it doesn’t feel so daunting and impossible!

When I first removed myself from an environment of constant chaos and unpredictability, my body didn’t even know how to handle the calm, peaceful life I was entering. My nervous system was stuck in a state of turmoil and I always felt like my mind was racing and I was running with it! I could never sit still and relax, instead I’d hyper focus on tasks that “needed to be completed,” and I’d feel out of control if I ever took a minute to breathe.

I still have days where it’s hard for me to sit down and unwind, but now my boyfriend and I both have learned how to handle it better. For example, earlier in the week was rough for me- I was starting my period and this time around my hormones felt super out of whack and I was feeling depressed. I honestly haven’t felt that low in quite a while, but instead of giving into that feeling, I was able to remind myself that this is temporary and has a lot to do with my cycle. I didn’t sit and think that I was going to be depressed forever, and I didn’t give myself a hard time for it.

I had told my boyfriend that I was going on a walk, which he encouraged, but I kept stalling and saying that I had things to do around the house and he could tell I was feeling anxious and overwhelmed. He looked at me and said “you need to go on your walk, and only think about your walk while you’re on your walk.” He was right, and I knew that already but just hearing it from him and out loud was something that I needed. I ended up going on my walk and I felt so much better when I came home. I cleaned up what I needed to, I showered, and then he helped me cut up veggies for the big salad I was making for the week.

It’s incredible how much of an impact that walk had on me, and I understand why everything I read and listen to about mental health says it is important to move your body every day. For me, just walking for 30-40 minutes made life feel so much more bearable, and it was nice to take some time to myself.

I feel so very blessed every day to have a wonderful man by my side who has grown with me over the years, who has learned how I operate and how to help me when I am struggling, and who loves me every step of the way. I used to feel like my brain was on fire and I was such a raging b*tch to him even when I didn’t want to be, and I knew he didn’t deserve it which made me hate myself/my brain quite a bit.

Lucky for me, he always saw the real me underneath all of the anxiety; and now I can finally see me as well. I am forgiving myself for past mistakes as I now understand why I was the way I was, and my goal is to continue healing and keeping this relationship strong, as I know we will have a solid foundation for our future together and our future as parents. That is still a couple years down the road, but that just gives me more time to work on myself!

Make sure you take time to look at who you were five years ago and then look where you are today; we all love to hate on ourselves and feel like we aren’t moving forward, but it’s a much nicer habit to celebrate yourself! Look at how you handle certain situations compared to how your past self would! Give yourself credit where it is due, and make a plan for the things you still want to work on. You deserve a happy life!

Resting

I have been laying low the last few days as I’ve been having some health issues. I’m hoping today to see my primary care, but I am waiting on a call from their office. If I cannot see them, I’ll be going to immediate care or something because I am 99% sure I have a sinus/ear infection and I need some antibiotics.

Over the weekend I woke up with a nasty headache and it kinda lingered for a couple of days; it was hurting whenever I moved my eyes, and I can still feel the pressure if I look down. I also started having pain in my ears when I blow my nose, and I keep sweating a lot in my sleep. I had an on and off again low-grade fever and was off work Monday because I woke up with a fever. I was negative for covid thankfully, and I did work yesterday, but today is normally my scheduled day off so I’m going to use it to my advantage.

I often get really obsessive about really anything, so the problem when my health starts being weird is that I cannot stop googling my symptoms and freaking myself out. I know I’m going to be fine regardless, I just always have too many things going on at once. My hormones are all out of whack right now, so I’ve been super emotional and crying every day. Being sick also doesn’t help with that, because I always feel more emotional when I’m ill for whatever reason.

I took the whole day yesterday to just lay in bed; well, other than getting my covid test and a blood test one of my doctors ordered. I couldn’t help but feel guilty for not doing anything, even though I kept reminding myself that my body needs rest. Yesterday I felt a bit better, so after work I made sure to bring the garbage in, I emptied the dishwasher, cleaned the litter and started laundry. I threw a frozen pasta meal on the stove and was so proud of myself for getting everything done, even though I still was not feeling 100%.

When my boyfriend came home I was telling him how I got all this stuff done since I couldn’t do anything on Monday, and he just looked at me and said “You don’t feel well, you are supposed to rest. You don’t have to ‘make up for it,’ because resting is what you need to do. You shouldn’t feel guilty for that.”

I shouldn’t feel guilty for that… he’s right! And I knew he was right, because I had already had this battle in my head while I was laying in bed all day on Monday. I kept reminding myself that I have to listen to my body, and if we don’t take our rest days, our bodies will force us to take them.

Today I’m still gonna take it relatively easy, I just have a grocery pick up and hopefully I’ll just be able to see my regular doctor today instead of immediate care. I just want to feel myself again, so hopefully I will soon.

An Off Day

Today just felt off, and honestly yesterday did too. I’m trying to be positive and remind myself that I’m allowed to rest and take breaks, but it’s not always easy. Today it’s 100 degrees outside and I started not feeling the greatest towards the end of my shift, so I ended up skipping the gym. I’ve been sleeping a lot more these past couple of days and I need to listen to my body.

I can’t help but feel guilty about it, and I’m trying to figure out why. Why am I so hard on myself? Is it because going to the gym is within my control and I’m not doing it? I already told myself that I’m going to the gym to feel better and be healthier, getting obsessive over it is not healthy! Honestly though, I’m stressed about life shit too.

We recently got a letter from our lovely homeowners association and they’re requiring some expensive work to be done. It’s annoying and honestly would never recommend anyone to live where there is an HOA. At a time where inflation is ridiculous, we’d rather not spend thousands of dollars on stuff that isn’t really that important (to us, but to them it’s not cosmetically pleasing), but we unfortunately don’t have that choice right now. I think the anxiety is coming from the fact that we don’t know what the pricing looks like yet, and I always have anxiety around money.

I am trying to remind myself that money comes and goes, and luckily my boyfriend and I are both working and are able to pay all of our bills. We truly are blessed and I am grateful for this every single day; I just need to keep reminding myself to turn to gratitude.

It’s not a bad life, it’s just a rough couple of days. I always come out of it and I will do the same this time. Day by day, I will learn to give myself grace, and I will learn how to be patient with myself. This is all part of the journey.

Weekend Note

I didn’t feel like writing yesterday, but I did write a note in my phone trying to dissect myself this weekend, so I’ll post that below! I hope everyone has a good week ahead!

______________________________________________

why do i doubt myself?

is it hearing it from the man I was supposed to grow up admiring? is it because I became a people pleaser at the expense of my own authenticity so I don’t trust myself enough? I don’t think I’m strong enough because I’ve felt weak for so long? I feel like my brain is broken, so how could I make the right decisions? I was so sheltered & felt so stupid, but the one thing I knew was money. I knew it & I blew it- but that’s not entirely true. I re-prioritized & got used to living a certain lifestyle. I drive a nice car, I get my nails done sometimes (less often than before), and I feed my iced coffee addition. These are things that make me happy, and having a reliable car is also a must. But I feel like because I don’t save as much anymore, and I “spend money on stupid stuff,” I’m a failure, so therefore a reason to doubt myself. I often feel guilty and get mad at myself after I go spend money on nails or food, I’m like why am I wasting money? How could I keep doing this? But I feel like I’m in a test with money, and I am working to win this battle. I will win.

Back to Normal

I get to go back to work tomorrow, which is earlier than expected, because my PCR Covid test from Saturday came back negative! I had a positive rapid test and a negative PCR in the same day (well, honestly the same minute)! Although I am bummed that I just cancelled seeing my family for a false positive, I can only move forward and make plans to see them another time.

I am hopeful that this pandemic is coming close to an end; seeing endemic being talked about seems promising! Not to mention seeing the UK lift all vaccine/mask mandates after reaching their peak with Omicron, I can only pray we’re next. Maybe finally after nearly two years we can all get back to our normal lives. It’s been so sad to hear about the people who have committed suicide and overdosed during this pandemic, especially knowing someone who did.

We won’t know how this pandemic truly affected people until much later; I know we have the numbers on the CDC website in regards to Covid itself, but I’m referring to the mental health issues and suffering that people endured during the shut downs. Children locked up in abusive homes, suicidal people alone with their thoughts, addicts who are bored but have nothing to do so they fall back into what they know; I feel there were much bigger effects on the human species than we know at this time.

At this point, all we can do is be grateful that we’re still here. We are pushing through, and hopefully there is a light at the end of this tunnel. Until we reach the light, it is important that we take the time each day to count our blessings and make our own happiness. We need to be our own lights during the dark times.

Appreciate.

I always make sure that the ones closest to me are appreciated. My boyfriend is the person who does the most for me, and I tell him every day how much I appreciate him and make sure he feels loved. We’ve been together since we were 16, and I’m 26 now. We always make sure we are supporting one another and caring for one another. I am grateful everyday that I have him in my life, and I make him a top priority as this benefits both of us in our life together.

As we grow older, we tend to grow away from people. I see myself growing away from friendships; I am seeing which friendships are healthy and which ones aren’t. I go through a battle in my head where I debate bringing up my observations to friends in fear of offending them, but at the same time, I feel like a bad friend if I am observing a friend display some unhealthy behaviors and I never bring it to their attention.

I also know I am not a doctor or expert on mental health, but there are truly some things that are just obvious. People also love to share their lives on the internet so more people can observe these behaviors. I honestly truly feel that everyone can benefit from therapy, and especially when you have a known mental illness and/or diagnosis. I mean, why wouldn’t you want to work on yourself so you can have a better life for yourself?

As I’ve stated in previous posts, I understand that therapy isn’t something everyone can afford, but there are things we can do on our own that can help make our daily lives better. One of those things is practicing gratitude: focus on what you have and appreciate your blessings! You tend to forget how good you have it when you don’t take the time to acknowledge and appreciate.

Another good way to take care of yourself is to take social media breaks; I saw that Lush Cosmetics recently deleted all social media platforms in lieu of information that came out about how terrible instagram is for young teens’ mental health. The constant comparing yourself to others, seeing how others are “better” or “prettier” is a sure way to feel unsatisfied in your current life.

I am glad that I have been able to go to therapy and learn to practice better habits in my life. I am so blessed to have a wonderful man in my life, supportive friends/family, and my three beautiful kitties! My boyfriend and I are blessed to have good jobs, a spacious townhome, and reliable cars that we enjoy. Of course we all have struggles and tough times that come about, but it’s so important to count your blessings whenever you can.

Observations.

I have always been observant, even as a young child. I moved to an apartment complex with my parents when I was turning 5-years old; I was an only child, so moving to a place where there were a lot of children was great! I had so many instant friends, some became long-term friends, however as time went on, we have all drifted apart. Life goes that way sometimes, but I will always be grateful for knowing these people, as I feel it as definitely has widened my perspectives of others.

As a child, I loved being outside with my friends. For years we would run around knocking on each other’s doors, asking everyone to come outside to play! As I grew older, I’d notice the freedom that my friends were getting that I wasn’t, and it made me very angry with my parents. I mean, most of my neighbors were younger that me, and it seemed like they were allowed to do more than me.

I can’t say this is what started my observing habits, because I feel like I always had been paying attention, but I feel like I honed in more on the parents of my friends and watched how they acted. Although I was upset with my family (for more reasons that what are stated, but that is not the point of this blog post), I realized that I didn’t want parents like my friends had either.

I was witnessing parents who really didn’t even seem to care about their kids; they just wanted them out of their face so they could do whatever they wanted to do. Parents who were purposely causing fights with other parents in the neighborhood, which goes hand-in-hand with the parents who loved the drama more than anything else and would let it consume them. My parents definitely have flaws (I mean who doesn’t, all parents are just winging it), but I can definitely say that for the most part, I was their #1 focus and priority.

I have had a lot of healing to do from my childhood, which unfortunately is common for many. Although, what I find to be more unfortunate is when people do not take the time to learn from their triggers/traumas, and then proceed to procreate and pass on it on to the next generation. If you are unhappy with your mental health and how you react to certain situations, why would you want to bring up a child in that environment to endure those same feelings?

I understand that everyone has different lives, different interests and different priorities. I understand some are lucky to have insurance and/or money for therapy, and others are not. Luckily there are other resources for information such as in the library or on the internet, but people would truly need to want to do this and/or feel the need to do this in order to have success with it. To me, it seems for many people that this is not a priority, which will only hurt future generations.

I personally know that I do not want to pass on anxiety, depression and/or OCD to my child, as that will give them some (possibly crippling) disadvantages in life. No one asks to be born, that is a decision made by two other people’s choices and actions; the least I can do is try to set up my future children for success. I do not have children yet, but we plan to hopefully in about three years.

I understand life will be drastically different once I have a child, but that baby will be my number one priority. My child will grow up knowing that their parents love them, and also knowing that they love each other, as unfortunately many children have divorced parents which is another statistical disadvantage.

My boyfriend and I already talk about our ideal goals for our children when it comes to schooling and we want them to be able to choose any sports/extracurricular activities they want. At this point in our lives we’re paying down our debts so that this is goal easier to achieve once the time comes. I’m also focusing now on getting into healthier habits so that I can pass those on to my future children.

Of course I will make mistakes along the way, again all parents are truly just winging it. Everyone does things differently, but what is important is that the children feel loved and know that they are taken care of. Again, no one asks to be born, that is someone else’s choice/decision. We should all want the best for our children, and we should want the best for ourselves.

Rough days

Although my boyfriend and I had a wonderful anniversary on Saturday, I had a rough mental day yesterday and it feels like it’s on today as well. I’m just extra emotional and sensitive- I feel like I’m getting easily overwhelmed by things that haven’t been overwhelming me.

Yesterday we needed to find some clothes for my cousin’s wedding this upcoming weekend, and after going to five different stores and finding absolutely nothing I felt pretty defeated. I know it’s not a huge deal, but I hate having to do things during the week and I also hate when I can’t complete a task so it triggered some anxious feelings. I also had gone all day thinking my period was finally over, but turns out that my body was teasing me (which also likely explains the anxiety/emotions).

In the evening yesterday I went to make Ramen (because I was too distraught to grocery shop, another fail that was eating at me), and I over-cooked the noodles. Again, not a huge deal, but to me it was. I cried. I just felt like literally anything I needed to do, was not able to get done. I felt like I was non-stop failing everything and then failing emotionally for letting these “small things” get to me.

The entire day, my boyfriend was reminding me that these things weren’t detrimental, and that was still have solutions for the issues. I felt like I apologized to him about 250 times and every time he would tell me that there was nothing to be sorry about. I apologized for being emotional and crazy, and he just said “you aren’t as bad as you think you are.”

That statement there made me start wondering at what point in my life I developed such a strong hatred toward myself and my mental state. I have empathy for all my friends/family who have mental issues, and I would never even think about speaking to them the way I do to myself; I don’t even feel like I need to! Why do I feel the need to be mad at myself? That’s something I want to dig into a bit more, I can’t see my therapist for a couple of months as my insurance lapsed and she’s hella booked out, but in the meantime I can do my own work. I’m worth working on.

Sunny Sunday!

It’s such a beautiful day outside, yet I’ve been inside most of the day organizing and cleaning the house. Honestly it feels great, and I still have time to go on a walk as it’s only 2:30pm. I also did some crafting today; I made a couple of canvases for my living room.

I’ve been feeling like getting off of social media again. I got back on Facebook for my small business and I am back to scrolling a lot. Today I logged out so that when I pull up the app I can stop and decide if I am going on there for business or not and just get back off. Twitter is where I spend a lot of time and truly it’s kind of a hellhole, but the astrology people on there are interesting to me LOL! I like reading that stuff even if some people don’t think it’s real, I truly think it just helps with self-reflection and being aware.

I still haven’t made a decision about work, which I guess means I may be staying where I am? To be fair, my current job told me they had to talk to some people and I wouldn’t hear much until next week. Part of me still is hesitant to stay because of the drive and I don’t want to be wasting all of my time, but also the insurance is much more affordable at this job. It’s just stressful to think about, and my boyfriend’s HR won’t get back to him on if we need to be married or need a civil union or whatever. I’m honestly not really focusing on that right now, I’m trying to get the house clean and start preparing for my first crafting “drop!”

I’ve been really proud of myself for how I’ve been managing all of this stress while also no longer being on anxiety medication! It’s been over 6 weeks now, and I am honestly feeling really good! I feel my emotions again, but I also feel like I am 100% gaining more control over them. I’ve been focusing more on gratitude which is helping me to get through the negative situations. It is a lot of practice and it’s hard, but creating healthy habits is important, and I want to do this for myself.

I also am going to be more mindful about how I eat and how active I am, as I want to be healthy. I want to starting trying to have children within the next couple years, and I want to make sure that I am active and get into healthy habits so that I can continue them postpartum, and teach them to my children as well. What I choose to do today affects my future self, and I need to be mindful of that

.