It’s been a while since you had a full night’s sleep, and you’re pretty cranky when you don’t get at least seven hours a night. For that reason, I’ll cut you some slack. You have what you call an inside-my-head voice. It’s time to listen to it.
I understand, because I am the inside-your-head voice. You’ve ignored me for as long as we both can remember because you stayed in survival mode. We had bills to pay, mouths to feed, friendships to maintain (we aren’t very good at this). Our life was one traumatic incident to the next without almost any downtime.
You’d write a story about it, but are too empathetic to the people in your life who would suffer from your opinions. There are people you have not forgiven who hurt you, and some you have. Mostly, you just pretend they don’t exist.
But now you find yourself in a lull. You have an amazing job with people who both like and respect you, a niche in a community that seems to have adopted you, and mostly, grown-up children.
My primary question is this. Do you think it’s possible to allow yourself to feel content? To feel pride in the work that you do without expecting everyone to point out what a fraud you are? By your own definition, someone who has done something for years successfully is an expert in their field. Perhaps learn to apply the grace to yourself that you freely give to others.
It’s time to learn to live today instead of yesterday. Forgive yourself for the actions of your past that led to the inadequacies that you feel. Stop filtering yourself because your opinion matters. Don’t passively agree because you feel the other person won’t take it well. It’s time to stop hiding.
No one knows better than I that you didn’t have the time or energy to invest in yourself while raising four children with no support, emotional or financial, from their fathers. I concede that until last year, your sole focus was on keeping them alive with as little need for therapy as possible. You did that. This is where we hear the applause.
In 2021, you went to DC, just like you always wanted. You also learned how disappointed in your own physical health you were. Well, it’s a few days into 2022, and I think it’s time to put your energy into yourself. I am you, and I’m telling you, there is nothing standing between you and physical health.
It’s easy, simply say the following words out loud: I am worth the effort to live.
There, that wasn’t so hard now, was it? Now get up, finish your coffee and go to work. The local news will not tell itself, you know.