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  • Writer's pictureResilient Chameleon

just be. it's not that easy tho.

Okay. Once again. I write with no real thesis. Just free flowing thoughts that come as I sip my iced peach green tea at this local café. It's a cold but sunny Wednesday and I am procrastinating on submitting the self-tapes that were actually due yesterday. My heart has been turbulent lately. Well.. for the past 3 weeks really. And I don't think I have the capacity to put on a face anymore. So fuck it. I come first.

The holidays was giving sad girl blues energy and surprisingly, I'm okay with that. Sort of.

There's something about leaning into the sad that I've learned to embrace in 2022. Although I think I've never really had trouble feeling sad, I realized it was coming out of it that I struggled with...

While I have had so many good things happen lately in life that I have celebrated and that's great, I did also forget to grieve the things that I've lost. And this is just as important to do. I only realize that now that all this grief is catching up to me. I guess I was too focused on showing up socially that I actually put my own emotional needs in the back burner.

For the longest time I put so much pressure on myself on feeling good right away or to stop being sad all the time. I felt this necessity because the lifestyle and career I chose demands quite a lot of emotional presence. I had this magic ability to be on when I was working or out with friends, and then I would always find myself so exhausted at the end of the day that I would just cry myself to sleep. And it never made me feel any better the next day because I would just do it all over again.

And no. It's not because I don't enjoy the company of my friends or that I hate life, I just noticed how my social capacity has decreased immensely since the pandemic started to loosen up. I was also just going through a lot last year. (GROWING PAINS BITCH!!! IT BUILDS CHARACTER THEY SAID! What they really mean is trauma. I will unpack this eventually).

ANYWAY! I don't tell people about my sad girl energy too much too because it makes me feel like a burden. For a while I believed it just isn't polite to be sad around other people. Also I like to think that I can handle my shit because I'M A BAD BITCH AFTER ALL!!! So I cried often in silence and kept myself extremely preoccupied by work or used creativity to cope. Sometimes I get a cool song out of it but other times the feelings are so darn big that creativity just doesn't cut it.

So I asked my therapist for advice. How do I cope healthier? And then he asked me instead "Hera, do you see yourself as someone of less value in comparison to your peers?" ... This question really hit me. At first I didn't understand what he meant but as I thought about it more deeply I began to question my own actions towards myself and how I set myself up around my friends. And that's totally right! I do make myself small in my circle of friends. I have a tendency to take up little to no space in various scenarios. I would make it my job to be a giver, the one who needs the least help, the one who doesn't ask for much, the one who is the most agreeable, the one that shows up on someone's beck and call. And there's nothing bad about being there for my friends or leaving room for collaboration, but when I put myself in that position too much that I now neglect myself and cross my own boundaries or start to internalize that I am less than everyone else then... I might be self-destructing.

I investigated this part of myself a lot in 2022 and the more I thought of it the more I realized that it turns out, I don't believe in myself. Or at least the part of me that is a 'bad bitch'. LOL. I don't know how else to put it but I think for a while I've been afraid of success because somewhere down the line someone made me feel like I didn't deserve it or that I was not capable of it (that exploration is for another entry). I'm scared of my potential because I also don't want to mess it up and fail. So for the longest time I've just chosen to coast and watch from the background. Aim low, play things safe and not challenge myself. Now I've just gotten used to settling for little to none because I have somehow convinced myself that 'less' is what I deserve because being 'too much' was a bad thing. And that's so wrong for me to do to myself! So I decided to change that. Slowly. I remember waking up one day and asking myself to unlearn this limiting belief.

It's been a journey and it still is. Lately as I do the work of drawing boundaries and putting myself first, I found my circle of friends getting smaller. I have less fucks to give about superficial things. I care less about what others think of me and care more about how I can love myself abundantly that I can have an infinite flow of giving to my loved ones and to the things that I value.

Perhaps it's taking the time to think about how far I've come as an individual, or the endless attempts of trial and error in trying to understand what it mean to create a boundary, or deep diving into my own mind to reflect on what really is it that matters to me in this life... but now that I really look back and reflect, I truly do feel different from who I was a year ago. It's still me, but I feel more comfortable in my own body. And it's exhausting to do the work, and it never really ends, but it can be so worth it when you begin to feel the shift in yourself.

It sounds really cheesy and shit but I do really believe in self-love being the key to abundance. It took me a while to understand and accept that me as I exist on this planet, as I am, in this present moment is a whole universe and that is more than enough.

Getting to that point suddenly made everything else that hurt no matter so much.

And in those moments of peace I learn to find gratitude.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not always going to be on my A-game, but taking the time to spend with myself and my inner thoughts have really given me a strong sense of my own self. In some way I've made myself my own best friend. (Took your advice mom!)

And of course, I'm nowhere near perfect. I will always have insecurities and I will continue to make mistakes and that's okay. I've learned that this gentleness towards myself and this embracing of the precarious nature of simply existing on a floating rock in outer space has made me feel somehow free.


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