Two roads diverged in a wood…

Originally posted text to my tumblr blog, girl-in-the-library

Sometimes I wonder about what other timelines my actions create

Like the other day, I almost left my debit card in a restaurant. Luckily, the server caught me outside before I left and was able to give it back to me.

But what about that me in another timeline, who lost her debit card? When would she have noticed it missing? I didn’t buy anything else the rest of that day, so I wouldn’t have noticed it gone until a day later at least. But would the other me have?

I wonder about darker timelines too – the other week I was driving at night and a kid ran in front of my car. I slammed on my brakes and everything was fine, but I am scared of the me who couldn’t brake in time.

Darkest Timeline Abed

This image is a joke from the show “Community,” episode “Remedial Chaos Theory” 

It could be something simple, like getting orange juice instead of milk at the corner store this morning. But it could be something life changing. And who knows? Maybe that juice would have been life changing.

I’m scared of what these other timelines mean about the me who is here, in this timeline. What does it mean if in some other universe, I could be something or someone completely different? I can see major points in my life that diverge in many possible ways. For example: if my ex never broke up with me I might not be a social worker. The chain of events that led to me becoming a social worker started with me being hospitalized after my ex broke up with me. On the other hand, I may have become a social worker through a more circuitous route – if my ex never broke up with me, my mental health still would have been in decline and I might have ended up in the hospital anyways, thus kickstarting my desire to be a social worker. But who knows?

I know there are timelines out there where I’m dead by this point in my life, due to my own hand, or maybe a bad asthma attack when I was a kid, or some sort of accident somewhere along the way. Who knows?

I just wonder sometimes, is all.

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Self Care and Saying “No”

As a human services professional, a social work student (soon to be licensed social worker!) and a human being, self-care is very important.

I know there’s been a lot going around about self-care, at least in my circles, but a lot of people don’t necessarily know what it is.

As simple as it sounds, self-care is taking care of yourself, that is, doing what you need to do to make sure that you are living your best life. Sometimes that means taking a mental health day, going for a walk, or curling up on the couch with a blanket and watching Netflix. Sometimes that means kicking your own butt to get out of bed and get something to eat, doing laundry, or socializing. Sometimes it just means allowing yourself to have a good cry or a deep belly laugh. It means all of these things, depending on what you need and when you need it.

I received a(nother) self-care tip sheet the other day. Most of it was old news to me by now, but one thing really stood out to me, and I’m going to share that advice with you all:

“Learn to say ‘no’ and mean it. If you can’t say ‘no,’ what is your ‘yes’ worth?”

This really stood out to me. I tend to say “yes” to everything, or if I say “no,” it’s a soft “no.” What I mean by that is I’ll say something like, “not right now,” or “I don’t know, we’ll see.” It’s hard for me to say a firm “no.”

But what is my “yes” worth, if I can’t say “no”? It means that people will come to expect me to say yes, it means that they won’t trust me or believe me when I do say no.

Maybe this isn’t as deep as I thought it was, but there’s still something there that I can’t articulate. I know that saying “no” is important. And it’s a skill I need to work on.

Sunshine Blogger Award

Sunshine

Hey all! Long time no write, as tends to be my M.O. I’ve been chugging along on my end, and I’ve wanted to blog, but it reached the point where I dreamed about blogging last night, so I figure it’s time!

A few weeks ago, I was nominated for The Sunshine Blogger Award by Sierraleonegirl. I haven’t been following her for very long (though it’s been a bit longer than when I first had this post drafted at the end of March!) but her posts are excellent! She is personal, prolific, and overall a great writer, and a great commenter! No matter what form, I always look forward to reading what she writes. Thank you for nominating me! I really appreciate it! <333

Sunshine Blogger Award Rules:
-Thank the blogger who nominated you.
-Answer the 11 questions asked.
-Nominate 11 other bloggers and ask them 11 new questions.
-List the rules and include the Sunshine Blogger Award logo in your post.

Continue reading “Sunshine Blogger Award”

Good Body Days and Bad Body Days

I have a weight problem. That is not something that is debatable. Caused by genetics, medication, and a sedentary lifestyle, among other things probably, I’m having a hard time losing weight. I want to lose weight for my health and I want to lose weight for my appearance and self-esteem. I’ve talked about all this before.

But something I’ve been noticing recently is that I’m having more Good Body Days, where I appreciate myself, than I used to. I still have a majority of Bad Body Days, where I hate my body and myself, but it’s great to actually feel good sometimes.

For example, I wrote the post Shape about liking the shape of my face, and it’s true! Sometimes I even look at my face and think, “I look pretty today.”

On the other hand, today I saw myself in my full length mirror when I was getting dressed and literally said aloud, “My body is disgusting”

But then, just yesterday, when I was changing into pajamas, I saw myself and I thought, “Man, my boobs are awesome.”

So it depends on the day. There are some bits I will probably always hate, like my stomach, chin, and neck, other parts that will change, like some days I love my thick thighs, other days I think they’re just fat.

 

It’s important to be healthy – and I’m working on that part. But it’s also important to love yourself. Every body is a good body.

On Eating Disorders

Hey guys, once again it’s been a while.

I’ve been working on my master’s and it’s been very busy. But during this time I developed another mental health condition, an eating disorder. (TW: EMETOPHOBIA)

I’m bulimic.

It’s hard to conceive of. On the one hand it’s like, how can I do this to myself? I see people smoking cigarettes and such, and wonder how anyone could have gotten involved in such a self-destructive behavior that is harmful to my health. Now I think to myself that I’m doing the same thing. I’m throwing up after I eat, almost every day, though it’s not every meal and sometimes I’m able to control it. This is awful for my health – it leads to weight gain, esophageal problems, teeth problems, et cetera.

I’m miserable about it. I hate throwing up, it feels gross, even if I feel better afterwards. But I sit at work after lunch and I can’t stop thinking about throwing up. It’s usually lunchtime, sometimes breakfast or dinner, but almost always lunch. And I don’t know what to do.

My therapist says it’s a decision that I can make. I can decide to stop having an eating disorder, but she can tell there’s part of me that doesn’t want to stop. I think it’s about control and desire. I am stressed and tired and I keep gaining weight. I can’t seem to control my food intake – I want to eat EVERYTHING ALL THE TIME – so I control how I feel afterwards. I don’t know. It allows me to eat whatever I want with the uncomfortable feeling of overeating. It means I can have it both ways.

I don’t want to have an eating disorder. But at the same time I’m afraid I do. I can’t control my weight – now I have another reason (you gain weight when you’re bulimic often because you’re still getting calories, just not nutrition from the food. Or something. I don’t really understand it but this is what I was told). So I gained weight from my depression meds, and now I’m gaining weight because I feel the need to throw up after I eat.

I really don’t know what to do about this. I need help. But I can’t afford inpatient treatment right now.

Catcalling

It’s been forever since I blogged – mostly because the school year started and so I have 24 hours of internship per week, 20 hours of job, and 10+ hours of class depending on how long it takes me to do my homework and study. So I don’t have much time for breathing, let alone writing.

It was my birthday a few days ago and something interesting happened to me: I got catcalled.

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Now I don’t take that as a good thing, it’s just a surprising thing, considering my weight and my general issues with self-esteem and appearance. I barely got catcalled when I was skinny, let alone now. How messed up is it that part of my self worth is driven by the erotic approval of random men on the street? I mean, it’s not, not really. I don’t like being catcalled, it freaks me out. But like, the fact that someone thought I was attractive enough to catcall makes me feel a little bit better, but also weirded out.

Like, how can I think like that? It’s toxic, and it’s patriarchal. I hate that I think like that. But It makes sense in some way based on the way our society is. “Take it as a compliment!” they say. But it’s always creepy, and always scary when it happens, even if it is meant as a genuine compliment. But “Hey sexy, how you doing?” is not generally a compliment.

I don’t even know where I’m going with this. It’s sort of just a life report and a little rant. Everyone who follows me knows I have self-image issues, and those are just getting worse. But regardless of that I don’t want to be catcalled – even when there’s part of me that insists that I do.

We are constantly bombarded with sexual imagery and the idea is pushed into our heads over and over again that our bodies are commodities for male consumption. But men don’t like fat girls like me. So I’m never catcalled. Hooray for that! But also because society has taught me I must be desirable, the fact that no one desires me really hurts. It’s not just the catcalling. It’s the fear that because of my body, no one will ever love me and I’ll be alone forever. And that’s a depression spiral I sink into often – when I don’t get responses on my online dating apps, when I feel like I can’t talk to someone at the bar or the club, when I see just how good my ex looks, and know how terrible I look, and knowing that even he, who once loved me, wouldn’t want me now. It’s terrible. It’s a self-esteem issue. But regardless catcalling does not solve that issue!

The only type of catcalling I want to hear is when a literal cat calls me on the phone. And since that rarely happens, well…no catcalling!