Finding my own path

Trying to pull out of this somewhat hard place I have been in since coming home from Colorado. When I am around my family, I feel like I lose my ‘own’ mindset and can’t stop the spinning thoughts worrying about what everyone else thinks. I have worked so hard to get rid of that living her in California (which is a major reason I think it is really good for me that we moved here right now), but they popped back up last week, over the weekend, and especially since I have come back after the trip. So that is hard. I also feel sad for a different reason in that I really miss my mom, dad, and littlest sister. It was hard to leave them. So it’s like I want to see them and then want my distance at the same time.

I just need to find my own path.

I feel like once I get in anxiety mode, it just takes me over. I forgot how terrible it was to feel this anxious all the time. It makes me see how much better I am doing in the last few months. I have had a clinical anxiety and panic disorder my whole life. When I lived at home and when B was gone, I had multiple full-fledged panic attacks every single day. Before last week, I hadn’t had one in months, what progress.

I think a lot of my worrying right now comes from desperately hoping my family sees this progress, sees that I am happy and doing well. The scrutiny makes me so nervous, whether it is real or perceived I don’t know. Well, I know there is some but maybe I perceive it to be much worse.

When we got there, my mom said, “You guys look good.” (to me and B). I know this meant she thought I looked good. It made me happy. But by the end of the trip, I was worrying that she didn’t still think that. I literally lost two pounds in four days while I was there, I was so nervous the whole time. I just hope she knows I am doing better, I hope she isn’t afraid for me. Part of me just wants to ask her if she knows that, if it’s good enough.

Also hard was and is thinking about my middle sister who isn’t speaking to me. I didn’t see her the whole weekend. She is very angry with me for my nervous breakdown that lingered on for so long. She has been angry at me many different times in our lives. She de-friended me on facebook even. I feel so awkward talking about this, but I just feel I have to process it. I totally understand her point of view, but at the same time, I don’t really want to see her either. She just makes me uncomfortable and nervous. Actually, I would even say I am terrified of her. I feel guilty for being upset with her. I know things are my fault, but I don’t feel they are at the same time. I have had a mental illness my whole life, I sometimes feel that no matter how I dealt with it, she would have gotten mad at me any way you looked at it. She doesn’t understand. I feel so nervous about that. I feel guilty about my own feelings towards her. I want to let my own feelings be okay, because in my heart I think we are both right at the same time.

How do I just stop thinking about what she thinks? Whether it is right or wrong what she thinks, all I know is that worrying about her is SO detrimental to me. It exacerbates everything she is mad at me about in the first place, my eating problems, panic attacks, depression, etc.

I feel like the only way to do well is to not care what other people think I should be like all the time. It makes me feel better with  my mom because I can actually TALK to her. We can set a baseline for when it means that I need to get more help. That makes me feel comfortable. Doing that is not good enough for my sister. With my mom, I still get nervous around her, but at the end of the day it feels like we are a team.

I don’t know what to do about this.

Mostly, I am sad about it because they are all going to San Diego in July and we could drive down to meet them. I want to drive down and see them because I miss my mom and dad so much and I don’t want to not see them until Thanksgiving! But with her, I would prefer to call her and talk in the fall. At the least, I want to say that we should be nice and not avoid each other at the holidays for my mom’s sake.

The thing is, this happens in every family. Serioulsy. Maybe not your immediate family, maybe extended. Maybe its just temporary. But family is just a bunch of people thrown together that never chose each other. It’s natural for conflicting personalities and disagreements to arise.

I know the way I want to do things at least involves living, it at least involves doing OKAY. I know I can’t be perfect, and I don’t want to do badly. So okay is good enough for me. It includes progress and FEELING HAPPY. When I push too hard and think too much, it just backfires.

I feel SO scared right now, I feel like I am doing everything wrong. My heart is racing again and I can’t breathe. I feel that feeling like I am dying. I just don’t want to think about it anymore. I can’t let it keep making me do so badly so that the thing I am afraid of happens. I can’t. I feel so guilty and like a terrible person, but when I say that, something screams back that I’M NOT!

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4 thoughts on “Finding my own path

  1. I know that going back to your family can be really tough. Whenever I go home I feel so anxious to calm everybody that I am ok and that they don’t need to worry that I end up being really stressed. But I think we just need to trust that our families love us for what we are and for how much we try. Just by reading your posts lately, I know you are doing so much better in California and I am sure your mother sees that too. I don’t know your relationship with her, but would you feel comfortable talking with her and telling her what or part of what you say in this post? It might be a relief and help tremendously. And never never feel guilty for something that was never under your control, especially since you are trying so hard to make things better for everybody 🙂

  2. You’re right… it’s so natural for there to be conflicting personalities. One of my besties and I always say “just because you’re family doesn’t mean you get a free pass”, meaning just because you’re family doesn’t mean you get to treat me poorly and be forgiven for no good reason. I hope that your sister comes around so that you can spend time with everyone without feeling any anxiety!!

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