I know I must come off as an idealistic Pollyana most of the time, always finding the bright side of everything (or at least filled with hope). But the truth is that I suffer from social anxiety (undiagnosed).
I find myself without many friends in person (you friends of the internet, I adore you so and do count you as true friends), and every time I approach a situation where I might meet people- I freeze up and panic. It’s that nagging voice in the back of my mind that tells me I’m just not good enough.
The voice first popped up in high school when I started getting rejected for parts. It’s because you weren’t good enough, it said. When I did get cast in parts outside of school, the voice told me I only got the part because other people must not have auditioned.
Then as I made friends, grew away from friends, and was shunned by people I’d thought were friends, the voice grew stronger.
It’s gotten louder in the past week. I start to accomplish a lot, and WHAM, there it is, telling me I’m a loser.
Case in point, I bought some stuff yesterday to organize the house. A spiffy caddy for letters with hooks on it to hang up in the bedroom (remember, I live with the in-laws, so the important stuff all goes in my room). Some magazine boxes to store both magazines and the dozens of notebooks I own. And a very nice hanging file box to keep the things I store downstairs organized.
I also started to lay out plans so that I can finish my Ramona costume for Stan Lee’s Comikaze Expo. I’d bought the last few costume pieces, I just have to work on the props.
Progress, right? No, the second there was a window to wonder if I had enough time, the voice started telling me it was pointless to finish.
So I went on a run, hoping to clear it from my mind.
Instead, it went into overdrive. It’s too hot. It’s too humid. You forgot to put on the ankle brace, doesn’t your ankle feel a little wobbly? Oh, look at the dog on the running trail by itself. It must be dangerous. After about .3 miles, I turned around and ran back to my starting point and walked home. (But in all seriousness, the dog did make me a little uncomfortable. I don’t have dog strength pepper spray, so it seemed to be a bit more wise to simply turn around than risk running into a dog that’s frightened- since most aggressive dogs are actually just scared.)
Even with the amazing first day of school and everything I got accomplished- it wasn’t a good day. But hopefully by acknowledging the bad, I’m giving it a little less power over me.