In my 20's, and even 30's, I started losing bigger pieces of myself. Why didn't I know it or see it? Why didn't anyone else? As simple as it seems, I think it is because I was in denial. I had convinced myself that all of the problem was me. I would never measure up. Others couldn't see through the smiles I wore or they gave up on getting their message through my occasionally hard head. (It IS my blog, so I can say it was OCCASIONALLY. ha! ha!) What was this monster? It's simple, I had become a
Yep, that was me......a diehard, people pleaser. When you are living for everyone else or their expectations, you become a shell of the person you would/could/should be. My insecurities built. The harder I tried to please each person, the more I felt like I was failing. It was impossible to live up to the expectations of that many people. The more I felt like I was failing, the less secure I became and the more I tried to do. I looked for security and happiness in external ways, the worst of which was my belief that WHO I was started to become less about me and more about the people I was with. It became clearly evident in the way I chose relationships. What a vicious cycle! Don't get me wrong, not everyone could see that despair and very few even knew about it. I internalized most of it because....well, I couldn't let everyone down. I LOST my identity. That sounds dramatic, but it is true.
It wasn't until I was in my mid-30's that I really felt like I hit bottom. I knew I had to make changes. I filed for divorce, made some changes in my life, and started using the word NO more often. Remarkably, life started improving. I shelved the dating world for a while, so I could examine my life and become reacquainted with my own feelings, dreams, and desires. I've made a lot of mistakes in my life, but that was one of the most sound decisions I ever made. As cliche' as it sounds, I had FOUND myself again.
Now celebrating the 21st anniversay of my 25th birthday (hey, I can be 25 if I want to be! Tee hee hee!), I am truly happier than I've ever been in my life. I don't have the body I did in my 20's, but I'm more secure in it. I don't feel guilty for living my life for me and my desires. I don't care how that is perceived any more. I am okay with saying no and meaning it. I stand up for myself and I won't tolerate other people disrespecting me. I am not afraid to remove toxic people from my life, no matter who they are. I have a great family and the two most terrific kids that ever exisisted!! My friends are TRUE friends; not the superficial type. I have made significant strides in the kind of man I will accept in my life, although there is a little room for improvement. Tee hee hee ! Is life perfect? Not by any stretch of the imagination, but whose life is? Life isn't supposed to be perfect. It is about savoring the important things, growing every day, and EXPERIENCING everything there is to offer.
Yes, I was LOST, but now I'm FOUND.........and I'm pretty damned happy. If there is one thing I can ever pass along that I would want someone to pay attention to, it is this: True happiness comes from within. You will never find it externally. You ARE something special ! Although I don't believe anyone is perfect, this song resonates with me because I believe we should all feel this way THROUGHOUT our lives. (Excuse the language)