Last night anxiety crept up on me like a stalker in the night. I didn’t see it coming, but it assaulted me like a stranger, something I hadn’t felt in a long time. Don’t get me wrong, I live with anxiety every day, but this feeling was different. I was being forced to confront a truth I wasn’t ready to confront.
I knew that tomorrow I was moving into a new home, a home I had planned on sharing with my significant other. The most significant thing was going to be missing though, which was the other.
“Tomorrow I have to be strong,” I told myself. “I have to be happy around my family.” So, I drained any water from my body through my tear ducts for hours, tucked under the covers where no one could see me. After my well had dried up, I tried to convince myself to sleep, but a sense of complete numbness overtook my body and mind. In these blank moments, I still could not find peace, or a quiet place to rest.
The day arrives and my alarm sounds at 7:00AM. My body and mind are still that of a zombie, so I tell myself “sleep is for the weak.” I shower and dress myself as the first family member arrives. Little does he realize that I am about to move into my own personal prison. The energy that engulfs this home will not be positive, not for a while at least. I imagine myself lying awake in bed at night, fearing not only the emptiness of my soul, but the physical emptiness; the space in rooms unfilled, the pillow next to me left untouched.
The moment passes and I take the day on like an Amazon Warrior. There’s no breaking through my shield of amour. “Ha! This is cake, I’m actually having fun.” The rest of the gang is at my old apartment as my father and I have some time alone arranging furniture. My father mentions something about financial assistance. Ironically, the finances have been a legitimate concern, but never the root of my anxiety or worry. I guess when you love someone so much, they are your main concern. Regardless, fathers have a way with their daughters. They just do, don’t they? Suddenly the tears ensue, but I fight it, and he knows I don’t like to show weakness so he tells me it will be okay and we continue moving the couch to my liking. He’s now lost his bet with my brother-in-law on how I would arrange the room (he needs a book on fengshui).
The rest of the day moves along smoothly and we all gather to eat lunch as my mom arrives with my adorable nieces she’s been watching. In a room full of love, I still feel sad and mostly like a burden. I know my family doesn’t feel this way about me, but I’ve had so many relationship failures that I begin to imagine they have a secret inside joke about me.
After a long day, an epiphany! I thought the person who was supposed to move into this home with me was my forever person, but now I’ll always know that my only forever person is me. I’m the only one who is able to love me unconditionally and who will always be there through thick and thin.
Readers and friends: Make a vow to care for, love, and respect yourself! You might waiver on this promise, but if you can come back to this vow, you can live a happy life with your forever person, you.