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I did it. I lost my footing. As much as I build myself up, I tear myself down. My nerves get the best of me. I’m an emotional person, a sensitive person, instinctive, and intuitive to a fault. Communication? This is the best I’ve got. I never speak. Well, not never, but rarely. I’m quiet and an observer. I’m vague in my spoken words. And when I’m nervous… when my mind is racing? I have no words. At twenty seven years old I still allow myself to sit in my emotions and be my own worst enemy. I’m scared of everything. EV-ERY-THING. I only recently got over my fear of the dark. I won’t go in the ocean. I’ve never been on a roller-coaster. I cry on planes. I can’t even ride a bike. I’m anxious. I make nervous sounds. I pick at myself…. I’m doing it now, in-between thoughts. Caffeine doesn’t help. I stopped drinking it, it spikes my anxiety to a level that I do not want or miss. I live in a dream world and my thoughts always run away from me. This is good and bad. On one hand, I can often look up to find a huge goofy smile (or smirk) has been planted on my face from the places my mind wandered. But other time… I let irrational fears and emotions sweep me away.
So what’s wrong? What happened? ….Nothing. Not a goddamn thing.
Friday, I woke up. Alex picked up Marlowe. I blogged. I went to work. I went to the gym. I went back to work until nine pm. I came home, a friend picked me up, and we went to dinner. Towards the end of dinner, I started receiving texts from my sister-in-law, telling me how much I would have liked the concert she was at, how I should be there, blah blah blah. I happened to be thirty minutes from my home, but only one mile from her. A sign, obviously. Well, no, not really, but it all seemed to fall nicely into place. I thought, why not? It’s not late, a beer and some random band won’t hurt. It didn’t hurt. It was a great time… and probably: top three for one of the easiest, best nights of this year. Sunday? Another great day… and I begin to worry. Yes, I sound crazy, I begin to worry when I’m enjoying too much, too easily. Maybe it’s the idea “when you have everything, you have everything to lose”. I like to live like I have nothing to lose. It’s why I’m so open (read: truthful, honest, not: communicative). But maybe it’s my spanish guilt. The idea that other people have less and I don’t deserve more. I recently read a comment about myself, how obnoxious it is that I am constantly patting myself on the back… I do pat myself on the back quite a bit. No, I’m not a super hero, and there a lot of single moms (and millions of people in general) who have a much, much more difficult life than I have (trust me, I know, I feel guilt about this), but either way, I am a good person and I do a good job taking care of everything in front of me. I am a good mom and a damn good woman, and for the first time in my life, I am certain: I deserve a good pat on the back. But again… as much as I pat myself on the back, or lift myself up, I am the first one to question if I’m doing enough or if I deserve more. This weekend, I’m not sure what happened. I guess everything just caught up with me… but the cool I’ve been living in the past few months… it dissipated, and I was left with my irrational nerves getting the best of me. I can blame it on the super moon, or the fact that I’m worried about a family member (but it’s easier to focus on other things), I can blame it on the amount of snot and tears I’ve been living in from poor Marlowe’s teething… but the truth is… no matter what I try to blame it on, it’s just me. It’s who I am. Like everything else about me, it’s something I’m working on, struggling with, and striving for more balance in. I’m hoping this is the last time I let rationality flee, and fear take over. I’m hoping that in this quick race of finding a better life, with a better me: I don’t lose my footing again.

(photo of my sister-in-law and myself in ridiculous laughter. taken by my brother, Mark, on Friday night.) 

30 Comments

  1. I just recently started reading your blog and I love it! This post itself just made me feel like I was learning about You as well as finding that I can relate to things you said. You should always pat yourself on the back. You are doing an amazing job! xo

  2. I love your blog. Your truth an honesty is so refreshing. I think a lot of people suffer from nerves, fear, and anxiousness. I hope that you can find a place of calm, peace, and acceptance of yourself and your life!

    Take care,

    Angela

  3. I think you're awesome and love to check in on your blog! You have such strength! Enjoy those good times, enjoy it all. You deserve it!:)

  4. I'm sorry you're living with so much anxiety. Anxiety sucks. I'm proud of you for speaking out about your experience. I think it is admirable that you're willing to talk about your self-doubt and struggles like this.
    You are doing a great job and you DO deserve a pat on the back (many pats on the back!). Keep pushing through.

  5. Drea, thank you so much for this post. I'm also an extremely timid, nervous person, and I admire your life style to no end. I think it's INCREDIBLY brave to be a single mom, and I love the adventures that you go on. I think you're a wonderful person who, not so much pats herself on the back, but actually THINKS about her life and her actions with the care and analysis that could do this whole world a lot more good.

  6. Drea, thank you so much for this post. I'm also an extremely timid, nervous person, and I admire your life style to no end. I think it's INCREDIBLY brave to be a single mom, and I love the adventures that you go on. I think you're a wonderful person who, not so much pats herself on the back, but actually THINKS about her life and her actions with the care and analysis that could do this whole world a lot more good.

  7. sometimes you have to pat yourself in the back because there is noone around to do it. and you deserve it. so no shame in doing it.
    give yourself a break and stop being so hard on yourself.
    you are a good mom, you are a good woman. go out and have fun and enjoy being 27 while doing everything or nothing at all.
    you are the only one letting yourself down cause only you have high expectations of yourself. everyone else loves you for who you are.
    hope to see you soon.
    xo

  8. Aw. Anxiety blows. It knocks the wind out of you and swirls your completly happy world into some out of control nightmare. I'm sorry it makes you doubt yourself because you really are wonderful and deserve all the happiness in the universe. I wish I could say aging helps, but honestly for me it seems to only get worse. YOu just have to take it by the horns and shake the shit out of it sometimes.

  9. Drea, thanks for being honest. I know the feeling of being cool, strong, and feeling like nothing could get you down, and then melting over something that seems so trite, yet it seems everything crumbles.

    You'll bounce back. One thing I've learned (am learning from meditation) is that the feelings come and go. You're doing fine. you'll come right back.

  10. I suffer from the same sort of OCD worrying/anxiety you described and I also pick my skin. I don't know how badly you pick, but it's called dermatillomania. It's actually common in people with OCD. I don't know if you've ever looked into cognitive behavior therapy, but it's about changing the way you feel by changing the way you think. It's really helped me. The workbook I use is "Mind Over Mood" by Greenberger & Padesky. It's really easy to understand and very helpful. I'm not sure if you'd be interested at all, but I thought I'd share just in case you were.

    Also, I see no harm in patting yourself on the back. You do a damn good job raising M. Even if there are single mothers who have it harder than you, there is nothing wrong with being proud of the job you are doing. You work hard, you deserve to be proud of that. There are days where I pat myself on the back just for getting out of bed when I'm feeling too depressed to function. There is nothing wrong with being proud of your accomplishments, no matter how big or small, and fuck the people who try to make you feel bad about that or bring you down.

    Abby
    beekneelife.blogspot.com

    • I like everything about this comment…. minus that you also pick your skin 🙂 I pick very, very badly. And it's 100% worse when my anxiety is higher. All my little oct behaviors are worse when my anxiety is higher. I love everything about psych and behavior therapy. EVERYTHING about it. I went to school for Marine Affairs and found myself in mostly psych courses. I am going to order the book tonight! Thank you thank you for the suggestion. It sounds like a book I would really love.

      🙂 🙂

  11. Pisces Problems!!

    Love you girl. Thank you for putting yourself out there for us.

    I am riddled with anxiety myself, a lifelong problem. I can relate. Just keep swimming. You are always going to have rough moments/times but you ARE worthy of everything you have AND, please remember, "this too shall pass." Its hard to remember that though. xoxo

    • hahaha exactly. I constantly tell myself that astrology means nothing, but I fit into the pisces box like no other. 😉

  12. Are you me in another body?! I act the same exact way. I hate how debilitating being so nervous about things can leave you. I feel like I'm always waiting for my anxiety to disappear but it only gets worse when I start thinking of it.

    Best of luck to you!

  13. To think that you are patting yourself on the back excessively, when you're writing a blog about your day to day life is laughable.

  14. I can totally relate. I think that I probably have real anxiety that could probably get me meds and a therapist, but I've learned to pretty much deal with it on my own. It used to be MUCH worse. When I was first on my own (at 18) I would get too nervous to deal with the check out person at a store, and have to leave all my stuff there. I got over that, and I learned to deal with a lot of the other stuff pretty well….but if something throws me off (work and school getting too stressful, argument with boyfriend, etc) I have a really hard time, like you are describing. I start to question everything, be afraid of everything. I know how you feel and I wish I could give you a hug. 🙂

    • Mine also used to be MUCH worse. I was actually on anti-anxiety pills for a while. I couldn't sit in a messy home without my heart racing. It's good to know we are both getting over silly things, huh? 🙂

  15. I've never let myself ride a roller coaster either.. I also cry when I have to go on planes, hence the reason I've never let myself go out of the country and travel.. which is what my whole heart wants me to do. Fear is a sad thing to live in, and I find myself in constant residence. It's nice to play with your mind though, to suddenly feel: " What if I didnt regard fear and worry?" It's true you can.. and its quite easy for most, but for some its a personal goal that seems too high to reach. Lately I've been feeling a little closer to that though, it helps by dancing like an idiot to music and literally putting yourself out there wether the worried side of you likes it or not. Its kind of fun to play with that side, and sort of piss it off if you will… test it.. I dont know.. thats just where I've been going with it lately. Its nice to hear that someone feels this way too though. 🙂

    • I love love love dancing like an idiot. I've overcome a lot of stupid personal fears in the past few years… now I've just got to get over some other ones. I'm going to ask myself that "what if I didn't regard fear and worry?" next time I start questioning anything. I feel like it would be a good way to move forward 🙂

  16. oh sweets, life is definitely an ongoing journey to try and better ourselves- to find that balance. days (or weekends) like this make us stronger and (eventually) entirely more grateful for the blessings we do have in life – even when we thought further gratitude wasn't possible. you are worthy of it all (and most definitely) inclusive of pats on the back- we ALL are! you are an amazing woman, mother, and human being raising an equally amazing mini human! its also totally fascinating how much the lunar cycle plays with our emotional highs and lows. hang in there, mama – tomorrow is a new day and a fresh start.
    sending huge hugs, love and positive vibes your way – today and always.
    xoxo

    jessica
    paperbluejay.com

  17. Doesn't it always work out this way? As soon as things seem to be back on track, it seems off somehow (whether it really is or we make it up in our heads). I love all your posts, but especially ones like this.

    By the way: your not alone – I'm terrified of the ocean too! Something about not knowing what's about to eat my feet has me near tears every time we go to the beach.

    • Dude. The ocean is a scary place. I still laugh at myself for applying to college for Marine Biology. (I ended up switching my major before even attending. hehe)

  18. Oh man, this post resonates with me. I get crippling anxiety for absolutely no reason. It's incredibly frustrating and scary because it literally comes out of nowhere, I get a knot in my stomach and my chest is tight and I worry, worry, worry about everything and nothing. It's a battle. And it sucks. I too am working on it, doing my best. That's all there is to do. Thank you for your raw honesty.

    • Thats the worst… when everything is fine and then BAM it sneaks up. It doesn't happen as often these days. I've done my best to take out anything that might trigger it <3 We will battle together!

  19. Oh my dear…hang I there. We all lose our footing…all of us. You are doing so great! You're an amazing mother, and a stunning example to your daughter of strength and bravery. Keep it up, one minute at a time!