It has been a rough day.
A trigger of it is the fact that i have not slept in 4 days.
I went to the gym with Erica even though i was sleep deprived. I was going to leave after the workout and go to my therapy appointment. I had been looking forward to the appointment. I needed it. I had a long list of things on my phone to talk about. I told Erica, "When i get in there i may just tire myself out from talking so much." I was SO ready to vent.
When my appointment started, the life was sucked out of me. I couldn't turn to my list. I couldn't think straight. I wasn't ready. I was too hard on myself. I was angry with myself that i came prepared and i just couldn't do it. I was scared. My eyebrows were twitching and my lip was shivering in a smirk-like way that happens when i am trying too hard to fight my emotions and try not to cry. She asked me why i had a smirk and i became more upset with myself because i don't know why i do that. My facial expressions never match my feelings inside.
I left the appointment and just sobbed in my car. I continued to remind myself it was just a bad day. I have come so far. I am probably just overtired. I let myself cry anyway the whole ride home. I embraced every fear that was creating my tears. That i will never learn how to express my emotions when i need help, and that my facial expressions and my overall self will never be perceived correctly because they do not match up. I do not know why i make faces when i am uncomfortable that do not match what i am feeling inside. Maybe i should put a bag over my head. Great, now my biggest insecurity is my..face? What will people think of me? What do people think of me? At least my therapist reassured me about it, and told me there was no judgement but not everyone can see it that way. Who else must notice this- oh no.
and thoughts such as:
Yes i must be overtired but that is a problem that when i am overtired i drag myself down to such a dark place.
and so on, and so on, i let the thoughts come, knowing with sleep i will be better.
So I breathed, i showered, my pjs are on. It's only 5:30 but if my tears will tire me out, i might as well take this opportunity to finally get some sleep. In the shower i thought to myself, "What are my options here? I can give tonight more power to suck. I can keep crying over how ashamed i am at myself, but what is that teaching me? If i don't learn to shut this off now, it will always be this way when i become overtired or am doubting myself. I already know these thoughts will pass, so why i am holding on to them now?"
Just that thought helped me. I just breathed and let myself cry a little more, but i washed my face and felt refreshed, and i was ready to move on. I can't always stop those self-loathing and fearful thoughts from occurring, but i can learn how to understand where they are coming from, where they will end up, and how i can stop them.
I need to find easier ways to allow myself to open up in therapy. I need to find easier ways to spit words out before my mind blocks all together, and to not judge myself so hard if words don't come out as i want them to.
So that is my reflection of today. I am going to eat something small, and hope that this post has helped calm my thoughts and finally help me to get some sleep tonight.
In many ways i am a perfectionist. I don't give myself credit for small things. From someone who struggles with mental illness, the small things ARE big things. Heck, i've been going to the gym! I've been spending time with friends outside of school! I haven't been questioning the worth of my life! I have motivated myself even when i am "too tired." I found the strength to let some people go, and trust that it doesn't change who i am as a person. These small things have made my anxiety manageable. These small things have given my depression a tiny boost, and i am able to have a little more energy and a lot more strength in my mind.
I need to STOP waiting for some miraculous moment when i "get there." and acknowledge and congratulate myself for all of the tiny things i am doing that are creating HUGE gains compared to where I was last year.
A Boston social work student, using writing for healing. Sharing the peaks and valleys of an empath's mental health journey.