Yesterday, I looked at myself in the mirror and wanted to scream. All I had done that afternoon was sit at home alone. While my family worked or spent time being with others, I rested in my room. The whole afternoon had been wasted because I had no life worth talking about. Sure, I am an introvert with social anxiety, Aspergers, and depression that hold me back but I still should be out in the world doing more to make a difference and help others.
This is a situation I find myself in often. While others my age toil in fast-paced jobs, hang out with friends, relax on romantic dates, and squabble with roommates, I wait alone for my life to begin. When I am overly busy, my anxiety boils over and functioning is difficult. However, when I have no schedule or purpose, I feel worthless and depressed. It seems that I am stuck in a lose-lose situation.
The truth is that I am growing a great deal. Last summer, I would have never blogged, ate in front of others, or hung out with friends occasionally. Two summers ago, I would not have worked the amount that I am or been in Toastmasters. When I check the facts, I realize that I have attended to several parties, multiple medical appointments weekly, other social events, Toastmaster meetings, and family get-togethers. Also, I am starting a new job, have hung out with friends, hosted and wrote a mystery party, and created a website. When I look back at the shy miserable girl I used to be, I know that I have come a long way. Sure, I am not doing as much in my life as others my age but that is ok. I am going through life at a different pace. My path looks different than my siblings’ or even my peers’.
I am unique which means that my journey through life will look different from anyone else’s. This is a scary thought for me. Will anyone ever see potential in me and hire me? Am I ever going to be independent and move out to live on my own? What if I never amount to anything? Will all of my days be spent the same way that they often are now, alone in my room?
I do not know the answers to any of those questions. However, I do continue to hold onto a glimmer of hope for the future. Yes, it will be difficult but there will also be beauty and light in it as I continue to move toward recovery. Attempting to be kind and self-compassionate, I keep reminding myself to take life day by day and not beat myself up for mistakes. Little by little, I am moving toward a more normal healthy life.