I did a post on Instagram last week where I shared a list of 6 insecurities/struggles I experience. It seemed to resonate with a few people, so I thought I would expand on it here.
Here’s the list:
#1: I have imposter syndrome about basically everything.
I want to write about mental health and be a mental health advocate. But what the hell do I know? What advice can I give if I’m not “fully recovered” and not a professional therapist?
These things sound silly to voice. But that’s why it’s so important to voice them. Otherwise they reign supreme and unchecked in the deep, dark depths of the brain cave.
#2: I am terrified of conflict.
It’s really hard for me to tolerate negative emotions in others, especially in Jesse, my husband, and I have been working SO HARD on this so that the people I care about can have space to feel all their emotions around me.
#3: I cry when I’m stressed.
That’s just how my body responds to adrenaline/stress. I wish I could keep it together, but once the tears break through, it’s pretty hard to stay composed.
Which is extra embarrassing.
Which makes it worse.
#4: I never really feel “at peace” throughout my day…
… except at the very end of the night when I’m in bed cuddling with my husband. Or in the wee hours of the morning when my son comes in for morning snuggles.
#5: I struggle to feel like I’m “allowed” to be anywhere and take up space there
This leads to an almost apologetic existence at times, although I’ve gotten a lot better about telling myself that I’m every bit as human as the other humans around me, and they seem to be allowed to exist, so I’m probably allowed too.
#6: I crave connection even more than I fear it.
Having social anxiety layered on top of an otherwise bubbly and affectionate personality is really, really hard.
I try to push through the anxiety barrier and connect with others, but as soon as the moment is upon me, I feel my whole being bracing and preparing to retreat.
I like the taste of onion in broths, but hate those arrogant little green onions that swim around the surface of certain soups like they own the bowl.
I don’t know who they think they are, but they’re about as welcome as decaf coffee after a night of breastfeeding a tiny, adorable, flatulent vampire.
(We are past the nursing stage, but my nipples and nose will never forget.)
Jesse’s mama will pick out the green onions if she’s around, thereby sparing me the chivey trauma.
Okay, I’ll admit that this bonus struggle has nothing to do with social anxiety. Sorry.
(Ha! I apologized needlessly, which brings social anxiety back into the game. Boom.)
(Did I just celebrate needlessly apologizing, when above I said that living life apologetically is a problem?)
(This is getting way too meta.)
I really do believe there is value in daring to be real online as an antidote to the illusion of perfection we often see portrayed on social media.
Social media can be toxic or empowering, depending on how we use it.
I want to use it to make you laugh and feel like you can relate. And to tell you that you aren’t the only one who feels like a neurotic zombie trying to raise a small colony of gummy diaper-fillers.
And to coo over cute possums. (Note to husband: You are still wrong about possums.)