What It Means To Be Broken
Do we ever stop and think about just how much it takes to break someone's spirit? To overwrite whatever sense of self someone has. To destroy any confidence that they've built in their own ability. To poke and the most fragile parts of their soul until they break. To convince them that they can't trust themselves and that no one cares what they think or what happens to them. To constantly remind them that their hopes and dreams are just as worthless as they are. To take away any chance that they might have of seeing and understanding who they are and what they're worth.
Walking away from something familiar, no matter how bad it is for you, is hard. Comfort is a beast. A beast that holds you, and convinces you that everything is alright. Facing the reality that I’d spent so many years allowing others to define me was heart breaking. I would consistently trust their thoughts and opinions over my own. And I knew it. Even after I was aware of what was happening, I let it keep happening. I didn't think I had the strength to do it any other way. I had no faith in myself. I also worried that I'd learn that there was nothing under the pain. What if all I was was pain?
I'm working on shedding layers of toxic beliefs and ideals about who I am and how I’m supposed to relate to people. I’ve been stepping out of the aspects of my life and being that no longer feel good or right to me. I'm trying on new interests and saying yes to things I never would have before. I’ve tried on some things that didn’t quite fit. I’ve tried on some things that fit so well that I don’t know how I’d ever lived without them. I’ve set out to meet new people, make new friends, and to begin to rebuild my life and make it my own, but in order to do so, I basically had to burn it to the ground.
I'll be the first to admit that I'm kind of all over the place these days. I'm a planner, but I've been living day to day. I'm a morning person but I've been sleeping until 11. Emails are going unread, phone calls unreturned. And I'll be completely honest and say that for the past month or so I've been pretty close to emotionally unstable, which as someone who's ruled by my emotions has been a bit of an adventure. It’s felt like I’ve been a different person with a different set of circumstances ever week for the past 2 months. It's been hard. I've been uncertain, I've been scared, I've been "bold", I've been bitchy, I've been reserved. For a while I tried to adopt this really gross 'fake it til you make it' confidence. It didn't really look good on me.
Recently I've found myself experiencing a lot of shame and embarrassment over things that I’d said and done, or decisions that I made while everything was kind of up in the air and I didn't know what was going on or if I was going to make it. I've just been overthinking conversations and events and not allowing myself to move past it. Well, today I'm deciding that shame and embarrassment are absolutely useless states of being and I'm refusing to participate in that narrative.
So I guess ultimately, the biggest dream that I had to let die, was the day dream of a person that I saw myself as. I was effectively living as the sum of the people around me. I'd collected the things that people responded positively to and tried to make a personality out of them. It was exhausting. I was exhausted. So, here's to the beginning of a difficult process.
I'm choosing to let my life be ruled by love, and not fear, because what do I really have to be afraid of? I'm freeing myself up to be open, honest, and authentic without fear of judgement. I'm letting go of that which does not serve me, including overthinking, unhealthy obligation, and caring what others think of me. I'm granting myself permission to take a step back and truly begin to process everything that's happened.
I don't expect these changes to happen overnight. You can't undo a lifetime of pain and programming in 6 weeks, but I'm resolving to give of myself and invest in others indiscriminately, and to stop standing back for fear of falling.