I don’t think I ever wanted to find myself before. I always wanted to know myself more and work out why I do things and how I think, but I never thought I’d lost myself. I may have lost my way, my direction, my dreams, and my purpose, but I never lost me.
But this year I lost myself. Or maybe I’ve always been lost and this was just the year I realised it.
I try to please people. I try to keep the peace. I try to be strong and perfect and have everything together. I try to always do right and be good. I look to all these outside things, scanning everything, stressing about every detail to make sure what I’m doing is okay. I let outside things affect me: people’s expectations, opinions and feelings. I go along with them. It’s mostly easy and natural to do this, and in the process I lose myself because I’m not being me and I don’t even know it.
I get moulded into whatever people want me to be or what I think they want me to be. Sometimes it feels like I have no bones and I twist and bend into whatever uncomfortable shapes I’m pushed into. It feels like I’m putty when I willingly let this happen. But other times it feels like my bones are there and I’m painfully broken into place to fit what people want.
And then the moment finally came this year when I couldn’t please everyone. When I couldn’t fix things. When all my contorting didn’t protect me and I got hurt. Because all that twisting and bending is really a defense mechanism.
I did what I always do and tried to please people, perform well and be perfect, but I hurt people and people hurt me. So I tried harder. But I kept failing. It was exhausting, painful and confusing, and I went to pieces until there was nothing left of me. Everything I relied on for my identity wasn’t working anymore.
At this time, a quote kept coming up about how you can’t expect different results if you keep doing the same things. I needed to change something.
I didn’t want to say out loud that I need to find myself. I thought people would look down on me. I felt guilty and wrong. Shouldn’t I go on a journey to find God, not me? But I’ve been looking for God and I’ve been finding him. A God of loving, serving and giving. Now I want to find the real me so I can love, serve and give like God but by being who he created me to be.
Reading Allison Vesterfelt’s post about the importance of finding yourself reassured me that it’s okay to go on a journey to find myself. It told me it’s okay to share this now. I don’t have to be afraid to admit it. This is where I’m at: I want to find myself.
Outside voices have ruled me. I want to find the voice in me. Ally says we already know the answer deep inside us. It’s just that we listen to those outside voices and that’s all we hear and try to please. I’m trying to unlearn all that now and listen to my own voice.
I’m not crying anymore, the pain is gone, but I haven’t got all my strength back yet. I can function again, but I’m not all me just yet. But now I’m strong enough to go on that journey of finding myself.