Tuesday, March 6, 2012

I was probably meant to be a housecat. But they put me in the wrong body.

I feel as though I've spent the last 27 years of my life trying to be a basketball player. For someone who was recently told that there is no way she could be as tall as 5 foot 3, who occasionally lacks even basic motor skills, this is an absurd goal. Except all I'm trying to do is accomplish the daily tasks of a normal life. Trying to dunk when you can't even reach all of the shelves in your kitchen is my equivalent to holding a steady job, keeping my room clean, and showering regularly.

I see the people around me accomplishing so much more, working so much harder. I had 5 different jobs last year, and not one I feel completely confident putting on a resume. It's difficult to hold the same job if, invariably you don't show up for a few days because you're afraid to go outside. And you don't call and say anything because of both your anxiety over phones and the crippling fear of disappointing someone. Or getting yelled at. Which makes leaving your bed a terrifying prospect.

Yes, I have clear anxiety and social phobia issues, sometimes. Not all the time, but frequently enough. There are lots of people who have similar problems though, or issues with depression, who somehow manage to- one way or another- complete all of the things that mean being an Adult. Are my issues just "worse" than those people, am I weaker? Am I just lacking discipline, structure, order, as I've heard all through my life? I try to have these things. I get bursts of determination, of "this time I'm going to turn myself into a successful person." Invariably it falls apart and I end up back at this spot.

This is the spot where I feel as though I cannot function in society normally. I used to take that as a sign that I was a failure at being a person, would get very depressed and even suicidal once or twice. This isn't how I feel anymore. I go back to the basketball metaphor. It's as though I've spent the past 27 years trying to be successful by being tall, co-ordinated, and athletic. Well, I'm short, clumsy, and fairly sedentary. I want to try to find out how I fit in the world. How I can be successful (read: happy, fulfilled, and enriched) in this world by working with my personality; playing to my strengths and acknowledging my weaknesses.

While they both affect how well I can function, social anxiety and untreated thyroid condition aside, I still ultimately feel as though I'm trying to function in a way that I just wasn't designed for. Looking back, I see the fruits of those labors: failed attempt after failed attempt, with ill-fitting clothes strewn along the way. Trying something new is the only option, but it's also terrifying. The prospect of failing at what I've felt down in my bones as my only saving grace to being a fully functional adult causes me to shudder. Yet ultimately not trying has the same result as failing, so I suppose it's time to defrost my assets, and appraise them for their value.

Provided my talents aren't judged on that last metaphor, that is. Haven't you ever really wanted to write something, even if you knew it wasn't very good?


  1. You sure you're writing about yourself here? I mean, aside from a few details, it's like I'm reading about myself, which I'm not sure how to feel about.

  2. Well and that's the frustrating part. Are we all just holding on, then?