I am here.
I am still alive.
I am breathing constantly, keeping myself here no matter how hard things get, how heavy the hurt hits.
How is it that every second I go unaware of this miracle of life that is dwelling within me, a mere foot from my brain? Working unceasingly, supporting me faithfully, not giving up on me even though I ignore it. How is it that I've never recognized this before?
In the same fashion, I go most days overlooking the value within me, the accomplishments I've made, the strength I've demonstrated. I minimize the successes, I brush off the compliments, I constantly tell myself, "Yes, I did that, but it wasn't enough." I set higher and higher expectations and focus more and more on what isn't while I overlook the miracle of what is dwelling within me right now.
My counselor said to me last session that we can only live in the present moment, otherwise we get stuck in the past or anxious about the future. Today it finally struck me how true that is. I like to daydream about what I could do in the future to look cool or gain recognition or even just imagine falling in love, planning out conversations I would have with whoever I think could be Mr. Right at the time. I guess it's a coping mechanism for social anxiety...I plan out in my head exactly what to say to someone in order to 1) give myself hope that maybe one day I can talk to the man I can't keep my mind (and eyes) off of and just be myself instead of stammering and biting my tongue and swallowing my jokes because I'm so damn nervous; 2) prepare just in case, by some miracle of God, he does talk to me, I might have something to say, and 3) fantasize that I won't always be alone, because with my track record thus far, it sometimes seems unlikely. The only problem with these fantasies are that they make me feel sick and desperate in the real world, angry at myself for not having the courage or opportunity to talk to a man I admire because of my social anxiety.
That was what made me realize that I need to live in the present; I get miserable obsessing over the past or trying to make my dreams for the future happen. And as I started to focus on the present, I realized just how much there was to be amazed at. I was in a Zumba class, which I took the initiative to sign up for and actually went to multiple times without feeling like I was going to barf right before. That's an accomplishment for someone with social anxiety.
I started to think about the things I have done in my life up to that point, letting myself dwell on each and feel proud of what I had accomplished. My mom pointed out to me earlier in the day how far I had come from a year ago, how strong I had been to come back from the depths of darkness, lying in a bed twenty hours a day. I also thought about how strong I was to be honest with people about what was going on in my life. I've known people who went through somewhat similar things (having a mental breakdown) but kept it all on the hush-hush. I took a dark time and have dedicated talent, money, and time to trying to use my story to help others. That's not something everyone does. That's not something everyone does a couple months into the recovery process. That's something to be proud of.
I don't need a man. I don't need a degree. I don't need more friends. I don't need more compliments. I don't need a longer resume. I don't need more recognition. I don't need more accomplishments. All I need is right here.
I am enough.