Thinking about who I was in high school because of a reference on FB today made me think "that's an interesting subject for a blog post." I came to my much neglected blog and find, to my amusement, that I have a draft that was written, but never posted, about 18 months ago. Granted, the post says something about the end of my journey rather than the beginning, but I'll include it here, unchanged from the words I wrote over a year ago. It's interesting that I never posted it, since it refers to (and may be the only blog post to date about) a really significant shift in my life.
The thoughts that brought me here were these:
My one regret for my high school days is that I didn't embrace the friendships that were offered to me. Through Facebook, I've been able to reconnect with some of them and then my visit to MD for my 20th HS reunion cemented these reconnections. It was never that I doubted the merit of the people who offered their friendships. Many of them are generous, creative, funny, intelligent, and thoughtful. What I seriously doubted was my own merit. I didn't know at the time that I poisoned myself with the thought that I was unworthy of deep friendship and that if people really got to know me, they wouldn't like me. I'm not entirely sure what I thought they wouldn't like, but I do remember thinking they'd find me boring. If I could send a message to that girl and say "Don't listen to that! It's a lie! A pretty egregious one at that!"
I don't know where the lies came from or if they're just standard propaganda from the teenage brain, but it took me 20 years to overcome them. Luckily for me, I learned from my mistakes and enjoy the blessings of friendship from some really wonderful people.
And now, my thoughts from Feb 2, 2012:
A couple years ago, I got Lasik surgery on my eyes. I'd been extremely nearsighted since the fourth grade. One of the amazing things that I felt after the surgery was that I could dispense with all the old thinking about what I could and couldn't do. I could see my toes in the shower. I could read the clock at night. It was invigorating. Once my eyes had healed and returned to normal moisture levels, it felt like I had brand new eyes.
Now, I've had a breakthrough in my inner vision that is similar in concept and effect. For a long time, maybe even as long as I'd been nearsighted, I've been unable to see myself clearly. I thought I was unattractive and unlikeable. I don't know why. Maybe there was logic behind it, but I doubt it. Almost 20 years ago, when looking at myself in the mirror, I suddenly heard the crap I had been telling myself. Thus began a long long journey out of blindness. A little over a month ago, I suddenly had a breakthrough. My vision of myself has cleared and I have dispensed with old thinking about what's possible and not possible.
Like the Lasik surgery, this seems to be a permanent shift, thank goodness.
Editor's note from the present: the euphoria has died down a bit, but the new vision of myself has stayed. It's a lot like falling in love with myself and going through that always wanting to cuddle and hug myself phase to a more grounded this-is-it kind of love where I can actually get things done, but when I look over at myself, I smile.