Unfortunately, as a child my family taught me to put everything and everyone’s well being and interests around me in life before my own. i chose a long time ago not to remember my childhood and it is amazing how easy that was for me. However, one of the things i do remember is being upset and crying about things going on in my family and being told, ‘You will be ok; don’t say anything. Everyone already has enough on them without you adding to it’. i know I am an adult now and i can chose my own life, but that habit has thus far, been impossible for me to break over the years. Even worse, no one has to ask me to do it anymore; i volunteer for it. It affects every area of my life; my job, my relationships…it is my automatic thought process to analyze the situation around me, see what is wanted/needed and do it no matter what it costs me; my time, my thoughts, my heart, my body, my sanity, anything. It’s not until i am in over my head that i realize how much i am suffering for it and begin to take a look at what it is doing to me.
It is utterly devastating to give, all of myself and no one ever even ask, ‘What you do want? What do you need? What makes you happy? You are appreciated and valued’. If it ever does get asked, it is because i have had to bring it to up and one of two situations inevitably occur: i am pissed off that i had to bring it up in the first place and i am too scared to speak up on my own behalf, or even if these things i need/want are provided, it usually too little too late. i have already given everything i have; i have nothing left to give; nothing left of me. at first i will find myself lost; questioning ‘who am i, does anyone care about me, do i care about me, why do i do this to myself time and time again?’.
When i finally realize that i have no answers to those questions comes the bitterness, hurt, depression, anger and i can feel myself retreating to a place behind a wall i have spent a lifetime building where i try and convince myself that i no longer care about anything or anyone and i will do whatever i want, when i want. At the time it sounds like a great idea, but more often than not, it leads to more self destructive behavior; spiraling down the rabbit hole of exhaustion and self loathing that is just too much to bear and wishing, so badly, that the hole would fill in on top of me and erase me completely.
Where is the balance between caring for yourself enough to ensure your needs and wants are being met while desperately trying to take care of the world around you and those in your world? i look at others and see them balance this effortlessly and it bewilders me. How do they do it? Where is this elusive line that i am convinced must exist between taking care of yourself and taking care of the the things you value most in your life? Does it even exist?
I feel like Alice in my own private wonderland hell where both sides of the mushroom make me smaller, too small for anyone to even notice.