What I wish I was told when I reached my 20’s

If you asked me what I am doing, I would tell you I am sitting here being angry. Angry at the laws and rules and regulations that society, culture, religion make for us. How they shape and mold and condition our mind. Predict our future and what to expect, then throw us into the winds of this world, barely able to fly, and watch in disdain when we crash and burn.

No one told me reality has no mold, no law, no regulation, no limit, and no regard for my conditioning. Rather, it threw life into my face; whether I was ready or not. I was completely caught off guard, trying to juggle all the curve balls while maintaining a balancing act upside down, on one arm, with the audience of the whole world watching pitifully as I struggle. And that is a modest picture. But, the show must go on. So what do we do? Who can give us the answer? Or even a clue? What is life? How do I live it without screwing it up even further?

What I have come to realize is that Life is not something anyone can prepare for. Life is a gift. Yet unfortunately, we receive this gift with bias, skewed perspectives, dread, misconception, etc. etc. We blow through our twenties searching for meaning and purpose; while committing the most sins possible, and running on mercy and grace, repenting every Sunday morning. We near our thirties, anxious about the fact that we have not figured life out yet, only to realize; life doesn’t turn out the way we have expected! Life did not turn out the way it was supposed to be, the way we were told! And with tear streaked faces, we slowly come to terms with the realization that we may never receive what’s “expected”. Whatever that is, anyway. We may never figure life out. We may never please culture or religion. Society is always changing its fickle mind. Life is meant for living. In the here. In the now. Day by day. One step after another. This is life. It should be championed. Cherished. Lived! This is what I wish I was told when I reached my 20’s.

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Rediscovering myself

I am working on self love.  I realized that is what I lack.  Sure, I love my appearance.  But do I love me?

Growing up in a big family had its pros.  But it also had its cons.  Those I did not come to realize until I grew up and began dealing with myself.  Myself at work, in relationships, public settings, alone.  “Who am I?” I would often ask, wonder, ponder..search.

After getting hurt, or rather, allowing toxic people into my life and run rampant all over me, I realized something was not right.  How was I allowing this?  Why did I obsess over people who rejected me?  Why do I desire so passionately and fiercely to be accepted?  Why am I afraid to stand alone?

  1. How was I allowing being mistreated?

I was the middle child.  Closer to younger.  Much younger than the older siblings.  Too young to go out, too old to play.  The feeling of being left out; it hurt.  It felt like no one wanted you around.  You weren’t qualified enough.  You were beaten down, talked down to, unaccepted, rejected.  That was the card you were dealt.  And it became accepted as normal treatment.  It was so regular, you did not blink an eye when it was happening.  Rather, you try to improve to fit in.  But you don’t. So you go around in life accepting the same behavior.  Accepting anything and everything life throws at you, regard it as a normal functionality of life, and do what you must to fit in with the crowds.

2) Obsession over people who rejected me.

I don’t know how I managed to get here, but apparently it’s an ego issue.  Which is a relief and hopefully a quick fix.  Or maybe its reliving childhood trauma all over again.  Being rejected.  left behind, unwanted, unseen, ignored.  And you plead with the world to see you, take notice, love you, accept you.  But you feel discarded.  Why?  Why do you feel this way?  Why do other’s opinions matter so much?  Why are you so afraid of your own voice, your own thoughts?  Was it because you were never taken seriously?  So therefore, you’re downtrodden, and angry when yet another person walks away from the mess you don’t know you’re in.

3) Desire to be accepted.

After being neglected and overlooked for so long, you crave the need for attention, acceptance, recognition, guidance, and will do whatever it takes to get it; right?  Some people act out and misbehave.  Or in my case, you recede.  You lay low, try to remain unnoticed and unheard, lest you give yet another person the chance to mock you or scorn you, correct or reject you.  Those needs that were not met growing up resulted in fear, resentment, insecurities, pain, non acceptance of self, self loathing, trying to figure out what was wrong with you, and why no one likes or accepts you.  No one champions your strengths, sees your potential and capabilities, admires your accomplishments, encourages you to continue striving. No one cares. So that longing for someone, anyone to show some sort of interest is like a hit of opium when that need is finally met.  That’s why we allow toxic people into our lives.  Our sense of judgment, filtering, and boundaries is skewed and not developed fully.  We take what we’re given and try to make the best of the situation.  Often leading to compromising our values, beliefs, and morals.  We debase ourselves.  We allow ourselves to be trampled on, laughed at, scorned, bullied, and we don’t realize that we have a voice and we are allowed to use it.  We were never given the opportunity to sharpen this tool.  Rather, it was always silenced.  Suppressed, tuned out in the noise.  Forgotten in the chaos.

4) Why am I afraid to stand alone?

I shouldn’t be by now.  Because alone is all I’ve ever known.  And alone is where I discovered myself.  My beautiful, loving, caring, capable, valuable, lovable, desirable, intellectual, incredible, unique, special, and talented self.

The mess is still there, but I’m doing my best to clean it all up.  Clear up the hurt and the heartache.  Wipe away the pain of rejection and fear of failure.  Sweep out all negative thoughts and emotions.  And nurture to life what was neglected by others and by myself for so long.