Months ago when I was re-doing this blog, I was told to think about how I was “branding” myself. As if I was no longer a person but a sack of beans or a jar, a commodity to be bought and sold. Needless to say I didn’t dig too deep into my “brand,” but I did stumble onto something of a mission statement:
This is the truest thing ever. I remind myself of this multiple times a day when I get cross or frustrated. And it helps; I find that I’ve been developing patience (which is not a virtue that I’ve ever had but have always wanted). The thing is, though, that while I’m better at being patient and kind with other people, I’m neither patient nor kind with myself. No matter what battles I’m fighting.
And I’m sick of it.
A large part of it is that I am not a naturally happy person, and I desperately want to be. I realise this is two separate chunks of weird, which I’ll divide and conquer:
- First, I don’t mean that I’m depressed again. I mean that I’m a bit too “intense” (description c/o Michael) in my normal state to be able to baseline at “happy.” The closest that I get is “content.” And even that has been hard to come by lately.
- Second, I want SO TERRIBLY to be happy. I want to be a happy person the way the Grinch wanted to ruin Christmas; rubbing my hands together and scheming in the corner, coveting it. It’s weird. I am convinced that there are feelings that I’ll never have but that everyone else is having all around me. Then I beat myself up for the things I don’t feel, which–spoiler alert!–only ever makes me feel worse about myself.
The common thread? I pick on myself. I criticise and judge and bully and get down on ME harder than anyone else ever could. For a long time I’ve justified this by saying “Being tough is the only way I’ll ever get things done!” but honestly, this is more than being strict with myself; it’s self-flagellation, it’s terrible, it has to stop.
I’m so used to telling myself why I can’t do things that I totally believe it (I’m nothing if not persuasive). I forget that I’M the one in charge of what I do, think and feel. I keep telling myself that I’ll never be happy, but I’ve been happy before and I bet I can do it again. I tell myself that I’ve changed for the worse and that nobody will ever love me, but people ALREADY DO love me and more people will in the future. Granted, I’ve got some sharp edges. But that doesn’t make me bad or unworthy.
The facts are as follows: On the daily, I see more of life’s horror show than the average bear. That takes a toll. But it can’t only be the bad things that affect me, I have to let the good and the positive move me, too. To that end, I am going to focus a lot more on being happy. I am going to write a lot more about being happy, not so much about all the ways the world can pull you apart. Because if words create my world (and they do), I want it to be a nice one. Or at least a place I can spend time in without wanting to pull off my own skin.
I am going to be a lot better at letting people in. I am going to stop writing off Special Feelings and let them come in their own time, or not, which is also fine. I will stop wanting to feel any way other than how I do. I am going to be grateful every day for the gifts that I have, rather than wishing them away (futile) or cursing the weight of existence (equally futile, and a little too existential). I am going to look for the light and the good because I know it’s there.
I am going to be happy, is what I’m saying, or I am going to die trying.