Our world forever changed on October 30, 2018. Both my mind and body would need time to heal, but my lack in control over one healing made it that much harder to heal the other. Recognizing this, I constantly repeated the things I should do to ease anxiety.
"I'll start doing yoga at home again."
"I'll start journaling."
"I'll write a blog about this whole experience."
Although I knew these things would be helpful, I was flat out uninspired to do any of it. At home yoga again? But I already went to the gym...Netflix will keep my mind off things just as well. Journaling? Well, all the notebooks I already own already have something written in them, I'd need a new one for a fresh start. Blogging? I'd rather do that when we're pregnant again so I can look back on everything I'm writing and know it was in the past, provide myself and everyone else with more hope.
The one thing my anxiety did enable me to do was create excuses. I knew I needed to turn to writing to help ease my mind. Words have always left an impression on me. There were many times I was tempted to pick up a journal to write, but hesitated. It was never something I could stick to, something just wasn't quite right. So, I eased into my inspiration. I turned to instagram for quotes. I found as I scrolled endlessly through brightly colored posts reading "these clouds will pass," "I hope you know it's okay your strength looks a little different in this season" and "happiness comes in waves, it'll find you again," the knots in my stomach would loosen up and it felt a little easier to breathe.
In chapter two of GWYF, Rachel Hollis reflects on what it would be like if we talked to ourselves the same way we talked to our friends. Just a few days ago, I called Adam in between classes at work because I couldn't for the life of me shake this feeling of being on the verge of tears. He listened as I told him for the millionth time what my fears were, and worst of all I knew I had zero control over any of this and that's what makes being anxious about it all the more frustrating. We came up with a plan to help ease the anxiety, and truly just being able to say all the irrational thoughts in my mind out loud to him helped the most. Afterwards, though, I realized that I wouldn't speak to my friends the way I speak to myself. When my friends come to me upset and anxious, I'm always supportive. I give them the space to just let it all out, tips on how to ease their mind and remind them that this too will pass. Why couldn't I create that same space for myself? It's not that I couldn't. I wouldn't.
So I did.
When I think about what anxiety looks like, it's a mirror. My biggest fears are created by these narratives I create and obsess over. So, it's time to change the image I'm reflecting. It's time to encourage myself the way I encourage the ones I love. It's time to allow myself to to find peace again. I wouldn't create excuses for my friends. I'd remind them how strong and capable they are. I deserve to treat myself the same. It's time I hold myself accountable - time I allow myself to find the words to express each and every day of this journey. Writing in a journal wasn't cutting it. So instead, I've turned to reading and creating space. After yesterday's first post, I truly felt different all day. A weight had been lifted from my shoulders. I didn't need to wait for my happy ending to share my journey - I shouldn't wait for it - because as I wrote yesterday, there will always be a new "I'll be happy when..." Instead, I'll focus on changing my reflection in the mirror.