Monster

As a child it was the blur of claws and horns under your bed, keeping you from sleep,

by age 10 it was the person who was supposed to be your protector that first exposed you to the idea of self-doubt.

In high school it was that girl who treated you like a trend that was always one season behind,

but by the time college rolled around the monster became the nightmare inside your own head who saw her failures coming for her in the dark and not a creature.

When that voice of endless hatred and self-disdain became your own,

you started to believe that you will always be one step behind and never be able to catch up.

What about the moment that you believe every critical observation anyone has ever said about you, and tell yourself that everyone who thinks otherwise is wrong?

Then who is the monster?

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Admitting Everything Isn’t “OK”

We’ve all heard that one of the hardest things is admitting that everything isn’t okay. If I was to be honest, I haven’t been that okay in a long time. After the newness and wide eyed wonder of first semester wore off, the loneliness hit hard.

I was used to being around family every day, and extended family nearly once a week. I had a solid group of best friends that stuck by my side through all of high school, if not middle school, and now we were all being split up. Even though my best friend followed me South, she had her own roommates and I found myself seemingly suddenly isolated from everything outside of my bedroom walls. I got a pretty bad concussion very early on in the school year, and soon I found myself not only in pain but also struggling to keep up with everything that being a freshman in college encompassed. Instead of meeting new people, I spent all my free time at neurological rehabilitation appointments.

Throughout the fall there were ups & downs, but January led to a quick descent. I spent Christmas break with my boyfriend in London, having arguably the best 3 weeks of my life. That goodbye was not easy to say the least, I cried more that day than I had in a long time. As soon as I got back to school, I knew I wasn’t me. I felt so empty and unmotivated which is so unlike me. I went to school and work and then came home and watched Netflix until I passed out- and that was it.

It got to the point that Ewan encouraged me to call my parents who told me to come home for the weekend. I was able to readjust a little and I pushed and fought my way through the end of the semester until Ewan came and visited me for my birthday! That trip was also amazing and I felt so hopeful and alive and happy.

Then finals week came, and yet again that feeling came back again. I moved home a week later, and soon after that I was on a trip to Canada with my best friend. I told everyone that I had so much fun but honestly I was experiencing a level of self-hate that was unprecedented to me.

By the end of May, said “best friend” and I had a falling out which has a post of its own and could honestly use a few more – but the point is that it hit me really hard for multiple reasons. She and I were so close for so long that it really made me question if I was a good person, if I just didn’t deserve to have people love me. Now I’ve gotten into the mindset that I have no idea what she is thinking and that is perfectly okay because if she doesn’t want to be a part of my life, then great.

Now that I’ve given you an outline of my year, I can give you my summary of sorts. Throughout time I’ve slowly gathered that I have some version of anxiety, in my opinion it’s most likely high functioning of some sort, but I haven’t been to a professional yet to be sure. This has been both an old and new challenge as it changes and worsens. I have been so scared to talk about it for so long and just a few days ago had a talk with my mom about actually getting help.

Strangely enough, this is the most open and positive I have been in about a year. As difficult as it is I no longer feel like I’m lying to myself or trying to put on this perfect act to make sure my parents didn’t worry and no one asked questions.

I’ve said that it’s okay to not be okay more than a million times and more than half of those times I didn’t believe it. Every day is a struggle, but it does get better, and things change. All you can do is keep moving and acting on what you really want.