So what’s it like to be me?
Well, not easy at times I’ll tell you that. I think I have symptoms of borderline social anxiety/social phobia and agoraphobia. Plus having a mild- severe case of shyness, somewhat low self-esteem, low in confidence and at times self-loath of my body.
Social anxiety – A discomfort or a fear when a person is in social interactions.
Social phobia – Afraid of doing common things in front of other people.
Agoraphobia – Fear of being in situations where escape might be difficult, or help wouldn’t be available if things go wrong.
This is something I really believe I have (or experience). Some would say I’m anti-social. If that’s the label you want to put, the so be it. There are days when it’s a real struggle to do things due to all these fears. People who look at me would probably think I’m just being ridiculous and silly when I blatantly refuse to do even the simplest of things. Thing is, deep down inside, I know I’m very capable of handling it, I just don’t do it for the possible outcome of it all. Good or bad, I feel at times it’s better to just avoid it altogether.
I sometimes look at myself and think, damn I’m looking mighty fine today then there’s other days I’ll be getting dressed and think..Wow. I look real bad. It’s like I can find something wrong with every part of my body. Most of all, I hate my skinny arms. I often think I have the arms of a child under 10 years old, and being 26 this is something I don’t want to have. But I can’t help it; I can’t seem to gain weight as easily as I want. And no, I’m not skinny by choice, it’s by default. Maybe I don’t eat enough? Don’t get me wrong, I eat, but food is just another part of something I struggle with. Even a young child, I have had food issues. There are just some foods I cannot seem to stomach. If it looks funny, or smells funny, there’s no chance in hell I’m going near it. It’s probably part of the reason I get so sick easily (well as of the last 5 years). Living in a cold, dreary, rainy yet beautiful place has played havoc with my immune system. My body refuses to adapt. It’s like I get sick easily at least once a month, sometimes more. I moved from a hot country to a cold one you see.
Being my size has its own issues. Like with clothes. It’s very difficult to find clothes (as an adult) that even come close to fitting right. I know some people would love to be my size, while on the other hand I absolutely hate my size. I wouldn’t dare venture outside in a t-shirt with short sleeves; it has to be a long sleeve top or a cardigan. All because I hate my skinny arms. Even if it’s hot as hell, I’d still wear a long sleeve top. I sometimes see people who are way tinier than I am and I feel a little bit better about myself, as strange as that sounds. I don’t really think I had this problem before I moved.
Did I mention I’m also short? Another issue to deal with when I go clothes shopping. *Le siiiigh*
You must be thinking…what does being short and skinny have anything to do with social anxiety? It doesn’t really (well it can if you’re self-conscious about your looks), was just something else to add to the story.
If someone were to ask me what my biggest fear is, (yes, I do have a really big one but I’m not going to go into it) I wouldn’t be able to answer with just one. Why? Because I have many. I sometimes think I fear everything.
So maybe I am all of the above mentioned. Maybe I am a little too shy, have social anxiety. At times all of this even makes me sad and unhappy, but not all the time. I’m not generally a sad/unhappy person. If I’m out I’ll talk to people if approached. I don’t go out of my way to totally avoid ALL social interactions. I laugh all the time. Sometimes I laugh so much at something so stupid (for no reason by the way) that I end up crying (or feel the need to). Again, for no apparent reason. Probably having stuff heavily weighed on my mind for an extended amount of time just gets to me and I break down inside. I also have sleep issues from way way waaay before. Been a good few years since I went to bed, actually slept right through and woke up feeling good. Some days I feel so miserable that I don’t even want to get out of bed and just feel like shutting myself off from everything and everybody. I’m also sensitive so that doesn’t help any situation at all. But in saying that, doesn’t mean I won’t somewhat stand my ground and give you back what you’re giving me. I’ve become less caring and handle jibes a lot better than I used to. I’m not a confrontational person and I don’t like to argue, but if you get under my skin, I will lay it out on you and walk away from it.
I’d rather be at home than outside. I like being at home. I feel comfortable, safe and secure. Nobody can “hurt” me, or make me feel like so. People often tell me, you need to get out, do things, experience life. Don’t you think I want to? Don’t you think I’m ever so desperate to do just that? But you don’t get it, nor understand why I distance myself from outside activities. If you see that as a problem, that’s exactly what it is.. YOUR problem. I don’t see why people love to concern themselves so much with what I do/don’t do.
I’m not sure what happened to cause all of this. Nothing comes to mind. I guess it’s just how I am. There’s time where I get so over-worked over the slightest of things. I don’t know why. I just do. Leaving the house not of my own free will can be very daunting at times. I just don’t want to. Not because I’m lazy, but because the process of it all is very tiring. I can be told something in advance and my mood will instantly change and I will not be a happy bunny till it’s over and done with.
Here’s a little scenario. There have been times when I’ve had job interviews or even mock ones and I’ve had maybe a day or a few to prepare and it’s like I feel I can’t go through with it. I get all panicky and my heart beat increases and I feel like I can’t breathe and I’m going to faint. Oh and then there’s the nervousness (and excitement at times) of it all which then causes my mind to race and I lose all focus and get shaky hands and all sorts. At times it even feels as though it goes all quiet even though I’m surrounded by sounds. Count yourself lucky you don’t get to see all of this unfold. It’s not a fun ride I’ll tell you. Takes a while for me to calm down. I may hide it well on the outside but on the inside…I feel like everything around me is falling apart and I can’t prevent it from happening. I go into a state of panic and just sit there saying oh my god oh my god oh my god.
Kinda makes me feel like a failure because I can’t seem to control myself or get it together.
I’d love to have the “freedom” to do average thing without feeling like the word is gonna cave in on me. If anyone knows me, you’ll know how much I LOVE music and cannot live “normally” without it. And I’d soo love to go to concerts and festivals but because I have issues with being out at night (the darkness scares me a little) and being in big crowds (or just crowds in general), I won’t go to any. Even if it was during the day, I’d still feel very uneasy.
It’s just such a mission to amp myself to do things at times. Being shy and all that stuff has prevented me from doing a lot of things. Had it not been for all that, I would be a totally different person to who I am now. Not saying there’s anything wrong with me now, I just sometimes wish my issues weren’t as big of a deal as they are to me.
I don’t feel like I’m hiding behind anything. Or maybe I am? It’s all hard to explain exactly. Maybe it all stems from childhood. I was constantly being questioned over everything I did and everything I didn’t do. And I do mean I would get questioned a lot over stupid silly things. “How can you be born here, lived you’re whole life here and not speak the language? You’re black” Yep, that was really said to me by someone. What does that even mean?! Since when does your race and the place you were born have to do with anything? I know this is going to sound a bit racist, I don’t mean for it to be but I bet if I was any other race other than black, I would have never even been asked that. Then I get looked upon as if I’m being snooty or I think I’m better than all the rest just because I only speak English? Are you freakin kidding me?
I guess that’s why I tend to avoid going out to places and being social, because there will always be a few or one person who wants to just ask me about EVERYTHING. If I stay home..yes I’m sheltering myself but at the same time, I feel as though I’m protecting myself. I won’t have people looking at me, making me feel somewhat uncomfortable, which makes me question why they’re looking at me and what they’re thinking. I get so paranoid over people looking/staring at me. Drives me soo mad. I do this on a daily basis. I wish I could not be like this..but it’s always been this way with me.
Don’t get me wrong. On the surface I’m all good. But at times, on the inside, the little insecure, afraid me surfaces and it make everything unbearable and all I can then think of is I want to go home. They say talking to yourself is a sign of insanity. Well if that’s true, I’m very crazy. Coz I’ve been talking to myself for years. I kinda have to. I’m my own voice of reason at times. And when you’re sort of an only child..and you’re playing with toys, they don’t respond back..so…yeah..
But in getting back to the initial topic, social anxiety and phobias are real and not to be judged or taken lightly. I know my case isn’t as bad as I’m making it out to be and it’s not as severe as some people have it. But nonetheless, it’s still something I have to deal with every day.
I know talking about it with a “professional” would maybe ease the way I feel, but that’s just another worry I can’t handle right now. I’m the kind of person who hears an idea or opinion and before you’re even finished explaining it, I’ve already decided no, I’m not going to do that or put myself in that sort of position. Just the mere thought of something is enough to send me into a mini state of panic, which causes all kinds of upset and will probably lead to crying. At times it can be very difficult for me to say yes or agree to do/go through something. I guess I’ve just become accustomed to saying no all the time, I don’t really know how to say yes? If that makes any sense.
Maybe I am just being silly and overreacting over nothing. But once you feel strongly about something, it’s not as easy to dismiss. Easier said than done as that saying goes. I guess I need to stop being so critical and judgmental of myself and then things will start to change slowly. I’m not saying I hate myself because I don’t, I just see things differently. Don’t really know why.
But even though I have all these little issues, I’m not as bad as it seems. I’m not a complete hermit. It’s just I can’t be bothered at times. I’d rather not put myself though all that emotion and stuff. It’s not worth it..to me. It may not make sense to you..but it does to me. Maybe I just don’t care anymore and I’m just tired of everything. Like, I can literally be in my pj’s all day, have a shower and get right back into them. If I’m not going anywhere, why get dressed. Someone comes to the door, don’t care (check hair is decent before answering).
If after reading all of this and you’re feeling sorry for me..don’t. Despite all these things going on with me, I lead a pretty normal life. I still go outside once a while and do things, some things I’d rather not..like go to the shops. I hate shopping..and cooking..and lots of other things. But them two things rank high on the list of things I don’t like doing.
Maybe I’m just an insecure person at times because I’ve always felt people have always had an opinion about me for some reason. Thanks but no thanks. At times I’ll be like.. I don’t care about what you think of me and how I chose to live or do things, other times it gets to me a little. But I try not to dwell on things for long. Don’t need the upset on top of everything else I may be trying to deal with.
I just don’t like being forced to do something I don’t have any interest in or doing. I’m not like you. I’m not like most people. I have my reasons for doing what I do. I don’t have to explain anything to you if all you’re gonna do is mock and judge me and the laugh like you’re kidding and expect me to be cool with it. That’s really annoying and lately I have no time or patience for people like that in my life.
It’s just physically, emotionally and mentally exhausting to be like that all the time. Worrying every day over things is draining on the mind. Leads to more problems and blah blah. But that’s life right? If it were easy it would be too easy. It would be nice to go through life with no worries, troubles, stress. That would be some life huh.
The other factor could be the changes I go through. Leaving primary school and entering high-school was a big change for me. New everything. The other big change was moving to a new country and being so far away from my whole life as I knew it. I guess I’m still trying to figure things out. Adjusting isn’t something that comes naturally to me. It takes a whole lot of time. Although it’s been a few years, I’m still trying to adapt and adjust to my new surroundings and life.
I’m not trying to make people understand me with all of this that I’m saying. I’m just giving you a little insight about me and why I am the way I am. Also I’m not doing this and expressing myself and using this as a cry for help or anything. Nothing like that. I know where the help is should I need and be ready to seek and accept it. I’m just better at dealing with things myself. I don’t really like to rely on others for things that I could easily sort out myself (may take a little while longer, but it’ll get sorted one way or another). I hate to trouble others.
I guess that’s pretty much me. I may be shy, I may be sociably awkward and resistant to a lot of things, but there’s so much more to me than that. When I want something, I’m determined to try and get it. It’s just a matter or working myself up to it all. Just don’t take me at face value and then proceed to perceive me based on your opinion and first impression. I guarantee I’m not how you think I am. But feel free to ask me what you like, and I’ll answer appropriately if I see fit.
In order to know me, you have to actually get to know me.
If someone who didn’t know me had read this, I bet they’d think I’m some poor, timid, billy-no-mates person who is frightened of everything and just cowers away from all life and never leaves the house. Not true. I’m bright, bubbly (at times) a little crazy (naturally, meds won’t help, they make me even worse. (Not that I’ve ever been medicated in that sense.) I’m also caring, loving, polite, courteous, generous, mature (to a degree), umm, understanding, patient, honest, trustworthy and all that jazz. Oh and I do have friends too, some I’ve never met before, but still we’re friends. If I’m too nice, so be it. I am what I am, if I wasn’t, the why would I say I am.. (Eminem reference). I may be somewhat damaged, but I think I hold myself together pretty well at times. You’ve got to in order to move on.
So anyways, I’ll continue to live my life as I’ve always done. I know that one day things will change and I’ll be a better person for it. I’ll be free of these “inner demons” that seem to chain me from reaching my desires and full potential.
The struggle, my struggle is real, but I’m a fighter. I’ve been “fighting” my whole life and will continue to for as long as I shall live. I won’t give up trying to overcome these daily struggles.
The first step is certainly the hardest but you know what? I’m slowly but surely on my way to bettering myself and being the person I know I can be. Happy(er) with life and myself. Things will get better. Knowing that I’m not alone in all this makes it a little better and easier to cope with.
As afraid and fearful of certain things, I am not really at the same time. If I’m doing something I’m gonna try give it my all. As I try to with everything I face. (Jobs, school, relationships, etc) I may be hesitant about the whole idea, but once I’m over that, I’m good to go.
I gather that being afraid makes you reluctant, but at the same time, makes you think, analyse and evaluate the situation. Once you do that in a rational manner, things become clear and you realise you CAN do it. Over thinking is one of my biggest problems.
All I know is, I don’t want to be scared and afraid and fearful. I want to live and embrace and bask in the ambiance of it all (haha bask in the ambiance from the movie white chicks). I don’t want my life to be held back and be prevented from doing things any more.
If what I’ve said all along makes zero sense, take a look at the picture. That about sums it up how I feel at times.
Picture courtesy of http://highanxieties.org/
Have a great morning/afternoon/evening/night
Till next time.
Be safe all 🙂