Beads of water glistened on top of the fog of the mirror. Swiftly raising my arm, I wiped a circle to expose my reflection. Staring back at me was a bare face complimented by swollen bags under my eyes. Somehow I felt crying in the shower could allow me to escape from the puffiness. I rubbed my face and let the steam wash over the glass surface again.
It's a weird feeling...
Looking at yourself as an individual. Without the reinforcement of loving words. I actually talk so negatively about myself in my head. Maybe I didn't catch it because I used to have those words of reinforcement. "Stop killing yourself, you're beautiful", or "You don't need to be afraid, you're YOU". The post-breakup silence now makes my own self-deprecation echo lately.
I guess I didn't realize just how much I tear myself down until I had no one around to keep picking up my affirmation notes and sticking them back to my emotional wall. I guess I didn't realize, until now, how much I actually don't like myself.
This is wild because, from the outside, most people assume I have a deep sense of confidence. And I do (questionable I guess) but ...I'm realizing maybe just how deeply it's tied to the validation of the ones I love the most.
If they're proud of me.
If they think I'm beautiful.
If they're happy with what I'm doing.
If they're on board and supportive.
The list goes on.
I do what I do for the people I love, but somewhere along the way, it has become a crutch. I can say over time the circle of whose opinion matters has become SIGNIFICANTLY smaller. I used to give everyone the same measure of care, but I learned that's just not possible. However, this new phase has made me realize I may have shrunk the size, but I went further in-depth.
Right now my confidence is shaken. I feel so insignificant. I don't to be a burden to people crying or talking about my feelings, so I just sit here in my apartment. Drowning in words of doubt and fear. Feeling discouraged for being nothing that I thought I would be at 29. Stressing over my fear of pivoting in my entire career path. Dreading going places and being social. Feeling terrified to put myself out there again and face rejection. Thinking of how the "biological clock" is ticking. Mulling over all my past choices (failures mainly) and driving shiny daggers into my self-esteem. If you heard the thoughts in my head the last week, it wouldn't even equate to the person you see on your screen.
I want to talk about it, so here I am writing. Because it's the only way where I feel somewhat comfortable. To admit something that I think I've been afraid to.
Maybe THIS was the exact problem.
Being so in love with someone and the idea of someone loving me...that I couldn't see how much I didn't love myself.
These days are difficult. To face the things I've been running from, but I know it is helping me. Every day inching me closer to being kinder, more accepting, and loving toward who I am and all that I have to become. They say the day you plant the seeds isn't the day you eat the fruit. So here's to every tear watering the new seeds of self-love.
In time we'll see.