Today was a pretty good day! I drove into Queens, NY today, to meet up with two of my girlfriends from High School. After dropping off my son, I met up with my friends and we had a really nice time. We talked a lot about our days in High School and about what’s been going on in our lives ever since. We laughed a lot and just had a really nice time. All three of us are moms, so it was great to have a break from the kids, to just have some adult conversation. Don’t get me wrong, we missed our kids, but its time we definitely needed, in order to keep our sanity!
Being with my friends today made me realize that I really have come a long way. Back in High School, I was not really allowed to hang out with friends, because I would have to stay home to do chores, or because I had to do something with my family. Eventually it got to the point where I was too afraid to hang out with people. I remember being invited to parties, or out to movies, or just to someones house, to hang out, and I would always decline. I would get upset with myself that I wouldn’t make the effort to go hang with friends, but I didn’t realize back then, it was anxiety holding me back. If I were to go hang out, I felt like I would be looked at oddly, or maybe they would see right through me and see just how afraid I was to be there. Or that they could see all the issues I had at home. Like I would be exposed in some way. What if I went out and someone I didn’t know was there? Would they judge me? Would they like me? Would I have anything interesting to say? Why would anyone want to listen to what I had to say? This was obviously all in my head. I know NOW, because I’m going to therapy, that I felt this way because of the issues at home. I didn’t feel important. I wasn’t listened to when I spoke. I didn’t feel I had anything to contribute. It’s really sad that I felt this way as a teenager, but it’s life. You live and you learn right? Who knows how things would have turned out back in High School if I were to hang out with my friends. If I were to meet new people? Maybe they would like me, maybe not. I would never know. What I do know now though, is that I need to continue striving for peace of mind. If I need to talk to someone, then I will do so, and not be afraid of being judged. If I am invited somewhere and feel nervous about being surrounded by a ton of strangers, I will make myself go anyway, because sheltering myself will only make things worse. In the face of anxiety, I have learned that I need to push myself even more, because if not, I will miss out on a lot of good times and memories. I’ve done that in the past, and I refuse to let that happen again.
So although, in some people’s eyes, all I did was get together with some friends, it’s actually a bigger deal then that. With my heart racing as I left the house, I didn’t allow myself to have negative thoughts. Although I didn’t know what would happen or how my afternoon would end up, I went anyway. And what would you know…I HAD A GREAT TIME! I look forward to more fun times with old friends :).
Love & Peace of mind