Caged by my inner demons
It has been a long time since I’ve been truthful with myself. The first time I actually stared at myself in the mirror a couple years ago, made me realize just how much I’ve been damaging my spirit, by feeding myself the lies I constantly told myself from the time that I woke up to the time I went to bed. You know how when you’re little and you develop these innocent fears you eventually grow out of as you get older? What if your greatest fear is something you can’t outgrow? What if your biggest fear is yourself?
At the end of the day, the person you are stuck with is yourself, but what if you end up being caged by your inner demons? As one who is constantly in her head, this became a HUGE struggle for me and a burden I carried for the longest time. I was so mean to myself, and thought everyone but me was deserving of love because of the cards I was dealt at birth. I can remember as far as fifth grade, where I knew something was different about me.
It started with something as simple as forgetting where I sat during choir rehearsals... I hated it, and felt utterly embarrassed because my choir member would get annoyed with me every Monday after school. I remember when saying I could remember something was a HUGE deal to me. For the longest time, people would have to tell me stories about my life, and because I couldn’t remember it felt like I was an outsider listening in on someone else’s life story. I was completely devastated.
It wasn’t until I got into high school, however, that I realized that my memory that was damaged at birth was the answer to why I was so different; why I could never engage in casual conversation with my peers, why I wasn’t that great at test taking and had to use my notes( I felt like people were judging me and saying mean things behind my back, which made me self conscious and not want to ask for help on anything). That’s why I worked my butt off and stressed myself to the max, because I felt like I had to prove everyone that I could do way more than the bare minimum.
I would choose not to use my notes, wanting to rely on the memory I didn’t have, just so I wouldn’t be viewed differently by people I didn’t even know personally, which looking back now was completely stupid, because how I took my tests wasn’t any of their business, but because I was so self conscious about it and kind of drew attention to myself, in a way I guess I kinda made it there business. Those are just a couple examples, of where I was caged by my inner demons.
To say it was hard to get out of that mindset would be the understatement of the century, and I'd be lying if I said I didn't revert back to those thoughts from time to time. It happens. We are all human after all, and we just need someone there to be our pick-me-up and encourage us to keep going. Not me though- at least not in the beginning. I always viewed having help as a sign of weakness, until reached my early 20s, and I realized I can't not have help.
That was hard to swallow for someone who always strived for overachieving and independence. For someone like me, it was a day by day struggle and I most likely had the lowest self esteem a teenager could have. It was bad... Looking back, it makes me sad how hard I was on myself and that I felt like I needed validation for everything I did... It was all part of the journey though, and I wouldn't be where I am today if I hadn't gone through all of it.
It's been a long time since I've been honest with myself, but for the first time I'm finally ready to talk about it...