Day Six, let’s do this. Man, I have a lot of self-doubt. A lot of self-criticism. It usually manifests in a way that others categorize as being overly sensitive or dramatic, but it’s real to me. I’m afraid of failure. I’m afraid of screwing up so bad that my future is no longer possible. I’m afraid of flirting with girls because I’ve been called weird, needy, creepy before. That is never my intention, I just want to be loved. I’m afraid of what tomorrow brings, with its endless possibilities towards failure. I’m afraid of my own thoughts, the maddening dance of “maybe I should give up.” I’m afraid of hurting others, whether through my words or actions. I’m afraid of my temper, the way it cuts into people’s guard and lays bare their ugly flaws. I’m afraid of my own flaws, it’s easy to idealize perfection. It’s suffering to practice it.
I’ve been in therapy for a year now. To some that’s an admission of weakness. To me, that’s an admission that I’m ready to actually become strong. Not the pretending that I show my family, friends, and acquaintances to ward off their worries. I like the image of the strong silent man. He gets things done, he doesn’t need help, and he’s always there for people. I’m not strong and I’m not silent. But I do think I am a man. I worry about things on repeat, I worry about things that are beyond my control. Beyond my scope. Beyond my ability. Beyond my reality. I am ambitious but throughout the years, I half-assedly worked towards it. The dreams. The hopes. Slowly dying within me as the depression spiraled further and further.
At the start of May I began walking. It was one of the many shifts I had in perspective. I wasn’t weak, I was untested. I wasn’t broken, I was tempered. I wasn’t alone, I was misunderstood. I began walking and from there I began to change my life little by little. I’m afraid I’ll fall back into old habits, but instead of it destroying me like it used to, it now gives me strength. I’m doing what I want to do. I’m doing what I need to do. Each step brings me closer and closer to the end goal. Each baby step brings me closer to the strong man I know I can be.
The habit of walking saved me from the worst of my thoughts. Here’s hoping the habit of walking becomes the habit of self-care.
The habit of self-love.