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Rackers

you are what you think of you

For a really long time in my life, I worried too much about what other people thought of me and too little about what I thought of myself.

It wasn’t a normal case you hear about, where I changed what I wore and I pretended I had different hobbies or I watched what I said or how loud I laughed.
I did none of those things.

I was always completely, utterly, unapologetically me — loud, sometimes obnoxious, always weird. I always tried to be kind; I’m human, though, so I didn’t always fake it.

I fucked up. I made some really god-awful decisions and ate myself with regret. I argued too much. And I had a chronic need to be liked.
I didn’t want to change who I was but I still wanted to be liked. I beat myself up over the opinion of sheep. I often overlooked the people who loved me, who not only accepted who I was, but liked who I was. I fixated on the ones who didn’t like me.

That was then.

That was when I didn’t realise that sometimes, people don’t like you because you like you. They are threatened by confidence and happiness and intuition with your own feelings. Some people have something wrong with themselves so they take it out on you.

Fuck, when I was 14, I had someone say he didn’t like me because I was ‘too happy.’ Like what is that?

People get this idea in their head of who you are, or who you should be, or who they want you to be. And it can be awfully hard to change their perception of you.

I used to try too hard to change people’s perceptions when I didn’t like what they thought, because I knew they were wrong.

Some people think I’m a big drinker, some people think I’m a boring old homebody. It never crosses their mind that I could be both.

Some people think I’m ridiculously impractical, very few (but there are some) think I’m practical and smart, in a conventional way.

The one that would irk me the most was when some people didn’t, or don’t, think I’m smart. I am a hard worker when I care. Sometimes I just don’t care enough.

Some people think I care too much, others think I don’t care enough. Some think I’m too emotional, others think I’m a cold bitch.

It all depends on what people have seen of me, heard of me, and what stage of my life they’ve experienced with me.

You can bust your ass trying to change someone’s opinion of you. Sometimes it could work. Sometimes it doesn’t. 

The main thing you’ve got to remember is this: you are not what others think of you. If this were the case, you would be mere memories, opinions and thoughts. You would be a silhouette. A shadow of a person made by everyone else but you. You would not be a person. But you are a person, with your own memories, your own opinions and your own thoughts.

You can enjoy a big night out and get disgustingly drunk and hate yourself the next day even though you had the time of your life. And the next weekend you can spend the night in with a cup of tea and a movie.

You can say stupid things and common sense may not always be on your side, but go home and study your ass off for a degree or a career or a hobby that you care enough about to work hard for.

You can cry your heart out about happy endings in Cheaper by the Dozen, and you can unintentionally hurt others when you are being selfish.

You can be all of these things and more, and know that you are not what someone else thinks you are.

You are what you think of you.

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Rackers

r u ok

2014.
Happy Fucking New Year. Good riddance to the worst fucking year of my life. I’m not really one to believe that a new year brings good beginnings, as I know you can change your life at any given moment, but this one felt a bit better. Nothing worse could happen to this family, right?

Happy Fucking New Year. I woke up on the second day of our ‘fresh start’ to my sister crying, trying to tell me something. I was still half groggy from sleep, only half able to decipher what she was saying; he’s gone. He’s gone. What in the world could have happened?
Do the rest of the family know? How do we tell them? Do we wait until they get to Sydney? Could we have changed something? We saw him just a week ago.
A week ago.
How does that feel like a whole lifetime ago?

How are the boys? Are we going to see them?

Four months ago, we were in this place; people didn’t know what to say to us, to comfort us, to console us. What do we even say now? Nothing sounds right.

“I’m here for you”? — that saying has since void of all meaning.

Happy Fucking New Year. The whole family’s together again. We stand in a group, tearstained faces and all.

“Let’s not meet like this again.”

“Please, next time ensure it’s a wedding.”

2017.
There are still so many questions left unanswered. No one can imagine the demons he was facing, every day. He had faced adversities we would never even dream of facing.

It hurts my heart that some people still don’t understand the concept of depression. How hard the battle can be with yourself. It sickens me that no one has the patience to deal with someone who is just sad.

We didn’t ask, ARE YOU OK? Because he was with us, he was laughing, we were happy. We were a family; we were together, we were stronger, we had faced the worst of it. Hadn’t we?

You can beat yourself up with ‘if only’s and ‘why didn’t I?’s, but there is no turning back. There is no changing what happened. He’s gone, but he’s still with us in the same way Mum is; just because they left the world in different ways, does not make his presence in our memories any less distinct.

I wish he could have seen himself through it. I wish he had have stayed a little longer with us, I wish we could have helped him.

But if we weren’t to know, how were we supposed to help? If we didn’t ask, how were we supposed to get answers?

The key to it all is education. Opening your mind up. The stigma needs to go. The snide remarks, the unfunny comments. The sheer closed-mindedness that still exists, even in some of our youth today. Depression is as much an illness as cancer is. It’s killing the people we love.

I don’t give a fuck if you feel like you shouldn’t be feeling like that. If ‘nothing that bad’ has ever happened to you. If you feel it, you feel it. And it’s okay. Just talk to someone, and get the help you need.

R U OK?

https://www.ruok.org.au/

Lifeline Australia 13 11 14

https://www.lifeline.org.au

suicideline.org.au

https://www.suicidecallbackservice.org.au

http://www.livingisforeveryone.com.au

headspace.org.au

Categories
Rackers

anxiety ridden extroverted introvert

Living as an anxiety ridden extroverted introvert.

I’m sitting in class (which I’ve made it to for the third time in five weeks – go me!) and I want to share my opinion and speak out, because, despite popular opinion, I do the readings and writing tasks before I come to class. (I actually care about this degree). I have opinions to share, so I share them, and I’m left with a shake and a racy heartbeat as if I’ve just raced a 400m sprint. A feeling of pride settles in my body — for just speaking.

A lifelong family joke of the 18 year old girl who was too nervous to order her own fish and chips.

The feelings of nerves when you’re about to go hang out with a group of people — those of which you’ve known for years. It’s getting there and being unable to shut your shit-joke-telling mouth up because you forgot how comfortable you were with them.

It’s working yourself up to go to a fucking uni class.

It’s making effort with old friends whose friendships need maintenance. You’re actually probably better off without these ones because they will never understand you or the way you are.

Finding it exhausting to hold up any sort of conversation, even via text.

Suffering from FOMO but not actually having the effort to join in to diminish the FOMO.

It’s being called lazy (/though that I can be/) when it’s just the idea of human contact that makes your insides curl in on each other.

The mere thought of having to make friendships in a brand new situation.

Anxiety attacks before heading to work — a place you know well, people you love.

Consequently choosing to work for yourself as long as possible to avoid social interaction.

Being great with people…until you’re not. You hit a wall and people misread your demeanour and think you’re either a) shitty at them, or b) judging them. Really all you need is a cup of tea and bed.

“But what do you do all day at home?” …Uuuuh, revel in my own company?? (And cuddle the dogs).

Meeting new people and having them think you’re nice and shy.
A few weeks pass and having them say “Fuck, you’re so weird.”

Being so willing to write all these words for you to read, to get a glimpse into my mind; yet when we’re asked to share a piece of writing to the class, I shy away, pretend I have written nothing.

It’s spending a full weekend in the company of others. Yes. You read that right. My FULL weekend. I had SO much fun. But I literally spent my entire Monday in bed — recuperating and refueling the energy the weekend took from me.

Socialising legitimately exhausts me.

The whole time out, having two parts of you in constant battle. One part saying, “Oh, my God, I’m having so much fun, I love everyone, why don’t I do this more often?”
The other part retorting, “Sleep would be so much better right now. Can I smokebomb? What am I doing? I should go home to the dogs.”

God honest truth? — I’m glad the former me won that battle and I hope it wins more often. (Don’t hold this against me. Also don’t be surprised if I spend the next few consecutive weekends in just the company of myself and my writing).

The battle is not in the act itself; it’s in the lead up — the self-talk, the pep-talk — left too long, I’ll curl back into myself.

Be careful what you wish for, though…because if an extroverted introvert gets comfortable, you won’t be able to shut them the fuck up.