So I have been off work for a few days working to get my emotions and mental stability in check. I love what I do for a living and I would rarely be excited about having time off unless for a vacation but in this case it was a matter of necessity and I am truly grateful that I work for a company that has bent over backwards in order to make everything ok for me.
In the time I have been off though I have had time to reflect. I thought about all of the things that brought on the anxiety attack and while I am thrilled I completed my story and sent it off I am still dealing with the constant concern instilled in me that what I shared will not be well received. I am also stressed thinking about letting people I don't know into one of the most intimate and terrifying moments of my life. It is one of the most important things I have been through that shaped my psyche and made me feel the way I do each and everyday.
Not so many years ago I stayed in my apartment petrified of the world beyond my door. I was unable to do anything alone and yet if I was around people I was concerned I would say or do the wrong thing. I always worried that people would make fun of me and even though no one really noticed me at gatherings I was still scared. I struggled with depression and anxiety. I was too nervous to be noticed but I was also depressed that no one cared that I was around. It was a battle each and everyday.
I thought hard about that this morning as I enjoyed the Family, Fur and Fun Festival. I attended on my own talking to people and petting their dogs while promoting my upcoming charity book. It is going to be released in two weeks and I was looking for a location to hold a launch party. Every aspect of that I thought about knowing I wouldn't have been able to accomplish any of it. I never would have made it out of the house let alone all the way to a festival filled with strangers.
I gave myself a tiny mental high five as I promoted a book I never would have been able to complete feeling like I wasn't good enough. I handed out business cards and met some wonderful people eager to assist with the launch of my book. I was thrilled to have gone and appreciated the door without feeling like I needed to run away.
I still wake up every day and tell myself I AM good enough. I AM smart enough. I AM good at my job. A job that involves a large amount of performance which is also something I wouldn't have been able to fathom. It hurts many days to remember what I am fighting. I push myself to get past my fears. Everyday I tell myself I am worth it. With medication and the help of family, friends and a very qualified therapist I am happy to see how far I have come and to know how far I still could go.