I work hard at myself. Really hard.
Every day I work to fight the demons that say you are not good enough. You’re not working hard enough. You are fat. You are worthless.
Every. Single. Day. I fight to make myself believe I am strong, capable, worthy of love and friendship. I fight to believe that people like me, that I am a good person full of love and compassion and that I have purpose.
Some days are easier than others of course. Some days come and go and I barely notice the work. Other days, it feels like I am trying to walk uphill, on crumbling steps that disintegrate beneath my struggling feet.
At 33, I have gotten better. It’s gotten easier. I know where the darkness lurks most often and I am more or less prepared.
I have been so excited to come home. To spend Christmas with MY family. To be cozy and warm. To be loved.
I realize, sadly, that while I do feel those things, they are a tiny, little fraction of my thoughts and feelings.
Instead, my thoughts are like this.
I need to eat, but if I go to the fridge, Mom will comment and I will feel guilty and gross inside.
Does this shirt show my belly fat, that I have gained through stress and depression? I don’t want Mom to see it and comment on how tight it might be.
Have I cleaned up enough? I don’t want Mom to see that I have been around, lest she get mad and say I left things around.
I really want to eat dessert, but…am afraid of what Mom will say.
I am so grateful that she bought food for us to eat…but I worry she will throw it in my face later if I am not good enough.
I would like to share some of my own traditions…but…she gets mad when I try to suggest a change.
Is that Mom coming up the stairs? Please…say she doesn’t want me for something.
Please, can I just have 20 minutes to myself, quietly.
So, the demons roar back with my tears. With my intense fears. With the realization that I trult sometimes feel traumatized. The demons and darkness come back, now that their Master is around, their ally.
The daily battles get bigger and have higher stakes.
At least for now. I am working hard. Harder than ever.
No wonder I struggle.