I am Me.

I have been asking myself lately, who do I want to become? When I was younger, I asked myself this, I had some criteria i wanted to meet, some observations I felt helped guide me, some ideas of how I thought it should be, and some determination to see it all through. Now, though, I feel at a total loss to answer this question. I know who I am, and how I got here, but who do I want to be now/next/moving forward?

I am not going to lie, I have not really challenged myself in trying to answer this question. Each time the thought flits through my mind, I quietly, nonchalantly, swipe it under a rug where it can hide and I can avoid it. If I do not see it, it does not exist and I don’t have to address my lack of living or choosing. I don’t have to think or challenge myself this way, and quite frankly, that disturbs me. I am not a hider, I don’t deflect and I don’t shirk what needs done. I used to love life, I want to love life again. Hiding and deflecting solve nothing, is this who I have become?

It is a simple question, really. I have built the whole foundation up to this point. I have chosen what makes me who I am. I have eliminated the things I don’t want to be, absorbed and molded who I want to be, so why can’t I just answer the damn question??? And as I sit here, feeling a bit ashamed, a bit scared, a bit nervous, a bit pissed, I realize that my my identity has not been nurtured or cared for in a LONG time. And the ton of bricks hits me.

I loved raising my kids. Hands down, it was the most important thing I have ever done. It was the most prestigious job I have ever had. It is the most rewarding thing I will ever do in my life. And it was the most humbling opportunity I have ever been given. I am thankful to have done what I have to this point.

I loved supporting my husband, watching him flourish with his job, and seeing how far and high he could fly, knowing his time to work is not over yet and the best is yet to come for him. I have encouraged him in his endeavors, stood by him supporting and listening, giving advice when needed. It has been a joy to watch him succeed, to grow, flourish, reap the rewards. I am proud of him and his hard work paying off.

I have been blessed to watch many people come and go from my massage therapy practice. I have treated so many amazing people over the years. I watched them find solutions to their body’s problems, helped them to reach out for what they want in life, listened to their woes and triumphs, and held many of them while they cried. I shared my gift of helping others with those that have sought me out, that gave me a chance, that thanked me for a job well done. I only succeeded because of who I was gifted to be, who I wanted to become, who I thought I could be, and the desire to play detective, searching out the answer to the questions and challenges put forth before me. I can tell you that you need an ultrasound on your aortic arch, and yet, I can’t answer who I want to become.

Man, I read back over that and I am either about to accept an award, or kick the bucket! LOL!! How maudlin, but amusing! Do you know that I actually forgot that I was funny? True story. I have felt like the only things I could say recently were gloomy, sad truths, or self pitying. I even stopped giving large amounts of sage advice, namely because I have limited my interactions to individuals or small groups of people. To sum it up, I gave up on people. I gave up on myself. And you know what I did? I kicked myself in the ass and said, “Get the fuck over yourself, quit the pity party and move on!”.

I am the queen of turning down invitations, cancelling plans, or ignoring you when you want me to do something with you. It isn’t because I don’t like you or that you are lacking in some way, this is all me, where I have gotten to, and who I have become. I have known for a while this was starting to catch up with me in a very detrimental way, my mental health was struggling, I needed to nix this behavior/response ASAP. I knew it was going to make me unhappy and uncomfortable to change, but I had to start changing. I started to do things, with people other than my clients and family, I started to live again, and holy hell has it been painful?!

It has often been hard for me to go out in public, to do normal things, to be around people. The reasons don’t matter today, maybe not ever again, what matters is that I started small, by going for walks, to coffee, sometimes lunch with a trusted friend. I then started to accept and not cancel some invitations to do the same with a few other trusted friends. Last week, I made a major leap, I went out of town to shop with a friend. Joe, if you only knew how hard that was for me. I knew I had to do that with you, and only you. And then you bought me the Moon. Literally people, he bought me the moon. Cry fest, and he has no idea what it really means until he reads this. I struggle with post traumatic stress, which makes me seem a bit agoraphobic, where you can’t leave your house or you feel unsafe in certain environments, but I knew that I was safe with Joe, and that I would be okay…even if I did worry about having a panic attack and considered canceling several times. Again, I know why, but that’s for a different day.

I am so off topic at this point but not really. I don’t care what people think, how anyone takes this post, how some may pity me, think they know me, or if they understand why I wrote this post. I don’t care because I am on a new journey. A healthy journey. One for my mind, one for my body, and one for my soul. I am starting fresh on this level, with a foundation of who I have become, heading toward exactly who I am meant to be. I am already en route to becoming who I am currently journeying to be, so don’t mistake this for me searching for myself, because I am not. I know me, and part of this journey is getting back to me, to go forward. I am leveling up.

This level, folks, it is for me, this journey is for me, I am doing it for me. I am becoming who I need me to be and it feels good to tell you this. I have fought making it about me, but you know what? My life is about me, it is mine, and while we orbit others’ lives, mine is mine, is mine, is mine. So I best get to living it, and keep looking forward to the next best version of me, keep leveling up and stop standing still or looking back.

All forward moving from here.

~Erin

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