I used to be fearless.
I remember when I used to completely be myself without a second thought. I would find myself in many social situations completely at ease. I used to be able to go where I want, do what I want without my small inside voice saying anything.
Now I even struggle to leave the house spontaneously.
When we live with a mental illness we are becoming a different person through the process. We learn to adapt, we learn to grow and in the end we do end up becoming a different person.
I am not at the point yet where I completely love the person I have become, and that’s okay. I miss my old self. I miss having no fear. I miss being able to go out with my friends and not be wishing to be able to go home the entire time. I used to be the last person out – now I’m the first person to leave.
My living situation has changed so this has also impacted the change. I have a young dog and a full-time job so I am very less likely to be out until late every night.
But this isn’t just about socialising. Professionally I used to be fearless too. When I was 23 I was training to become a teacher, I would walk into a room full of grumpy teenagers and own that room. I used to be so confident.
Now, I hope I can walk into a room without anyone noticing. I wake up in the morning and hope that things go okay so no one thinks I’m a failure.
I’m working on my self-esteem and confidence, but that doesn’t happen overnight and I’m pissed off at my former self just had that confidence. How did she do that? How was she able to just do what she wanted? Did she not get scared at all?
I know the idea that I’m jealous of myself is ridiculous, but I am. She had it so bloody easy and I wish she knew how lucky she was, but she was great.
But shes gone.
And I need to make peace with that and realise that the new me is amazing in her own way too.
Without my depression and anxiety ECBC wouldn’t exist. My friendships I have now wouldn’t be so strong as now I am able to be more open and more empathetic.
I am allowing myself to grieve, but I do need to move on and accept that it’s time to embrace a new Emma and a new life. Just as I write these words I do feel emotional as part of me wishes I could click my fingers and go back to how I was.
But that’s not possible.
I still need to learn to fully love myself. It’s going to take time but I will get there.
Goodbye old Emma, hello new.
Does this post relate to how you live with your mental illness? Please share below.
We are always looking for more content writers and for others to share their story. If you would like to write for us please get in touch.