This is a poem
It says, I’m sorry
I miss you
Please forgive me.
I wanted to write a poem:
Illustrative, descriptive, poignant
Then I thought,
Will you even understand?
Will you even read this?
You never did.
You won’t now
Because we don’t know each other.
I fell for your eyes.
You didn’t know it then.
You don’t know now.
I’m so sorry I never spoke up.
I will never forget the day
That you will never recall.
I cannot even begin to count the number of opportunities I’ve missed out on because I, myself, chose not to be a part of them. I cannot tell you how many excuses I’ve made, how many plans I’ve broken off, how many times I’ve said No to the Universe. It wears on me, it really does. It is one of the most embarrassing things in my life to admit that my anxiety is out of control. I live a very calculated lifestyle – always making sure I’m in control of each situation (or at least convincing myself that I’m ‘in control’). If at any moment I feel I am no longer in control, anxiety builds, and a volcanic eruption of emotion ensues. Tears, heavy breathing, blotchy skin, heart racing – full blown panic attack.
Honestly, it is embarrassing, scary, humbling, and beautiful all at the same time. I’ve wanted to write about my anxiety for a few months now. I wanted to talk about how I handle it, give advice as to what works for me, even encourage others to get out there in the world again. But wow, I’ve really been struggling to speak up about it – I think because it is a daily struggle, an enormous obstacle that I have yet to overcome.
I could talk about the strides I’ve made and the new methods I’ve embraced to help calm my mind. I could tell you about the long walks I take at Eagle Creek Park in hopes of centering my anxious being. Or I could talk about the hours I spend sitting, obsessing, blissfully daydreaming about the day I will hold a published book of my own in my hands. I could tell you about meditation and the friendship I am creating, with myself. (Side note, getting to know myself is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.) I could tell you about how I’ve immersed myself in creative projects with strangers across the United States and how this literally, without a doubt, gives me hope that I am not alone; I am special; I will do great things, whatever they may be.
I could tell you about all of these wonderful things in my life, and I could tell you about my silent struggle as well. I could go on and on about the recent outbursts of crying, dry heaving, and panic I’ve experienced as more opportunity has presented itself to me. It’s quite bizarre. I could tell you how I do not now nor have I ever felt worthy of writing for other websites; how I shake nervously each time I send off an ‘original piece’ to a stranger to be judged and reviewed. I could tell you how I wait, nervously, anxiously, for hours, sometimes days, wondering when and if I will receive feedback. I could even tell you that my mind spoils the most joyous moments in my ‘career’ when I receive inquiries from companies saying they are, in fact, interested in my writing. You cannot do this, people will judge it, think it’s silly, there is no talent in this brain of yours. Yes, I could go on and on.
But really, the point of this post is just to say: the struggle is okay, whatever you may be going through, but ultimately it is your choice to deal with what is in front of you. I think every new day, every hour, every minute is an opportunity to start over again, to calm yourself, to just say that everything is okay in this moment. You’re not broken if you struggle with anxiety or depression. There’s nothing wrong with you if you are single, or divorced, or widowed. So what if you’re 15 pounds overweight? It’s okay. It’s okay if you work in a shit job right now…. It’s okay, be grateful that you have a job at all. Your occupation does not define you… Think long-term and look to where you want to be in 5, even 10 years. My point is, too often we look at our lives and always speculate, telling ourselves ‘something is wrong: fix this!’ Readers, Nothing is wrong with you! There is nothing to fix!!
I just want to encourage you to speak up about your story. I encourage you to listen to others. Start a conversation. Be sincere about your life, for once. Let your walls come down a little today. Say it straight, simple and with a smile.
This poem is just a creative way of saying: Don’t let another moment pass you by. Don’t let another minute be a missed opportunity. Don’t pass up the stranger on the street. Say hello, greet him. Call an old friend; call your Mom. Speak up!! Get off the computer. Get away from the Internet. Be a human again. Interact. Touch someone’s hand. Kiss someone’s forehead. Share a hug. Take that class you’ve been putting off. Go to the monthly dinner party that you somehow always manage to skip. Snuggle up with a book that sits dusty on your shelf. If nothing else,
Just fucking smile.
If for no one else but yourself, say yes to what is offered now. Every second, a tiny threshold appears — opening a door of opportunity in which you can step in and say Yes. Feel the enticing unknowns brush against you, and invite whatever is in front of you in. It is exciting! Uncertainty is your friend, if only you’d allow it to be. We all struggle, but don’t let it hold you back from saying yes. Be open, keep going.