Here We Go Again

I feel it creeping in again.

The feelings of anxiety, of sadness bordering on depression, of not being in control.

I haven’t felt hungry in days, which makes it really difficult to want to eat.

I am lonely, and it’s day 1 of summer break.

How did I get here…again? How did I not see this coming?

About 2 months ago, D came home with some pretty big news. He was on a project that would eventually send us on a move sometime in 2018, but his boss offered him a new gig – we move in August-September time frame.

I was a very integral part of this decision, and I do feel like it is probably the right choice to go ahead and go through with the move. However, it’s frustrating that the second a place starts feeling like “home,” we up and move again. It’s comforting to know that we will return to this location, eventually, but I also know that life continues to happen and things will change while we are gone.

We also don’t know where we are going yet. We have three possible locations, one more likely than the others, and all three on different continents. Want to know what makes an already stressful situation more stressful…not knowing what continent you will live on in 3 months.

As anxious, stressed, and nervous as I am about the entire situation, I also feel incredibly selfish for feeling this way. I know I should be excited. I know should be looking forward to this new chapter of this amazing life that D, S, and I get to experience. But in reality, I just want to curl up on the couch and pretend it’s not happening…again.

I am scared of living in another country where I probably won’t work, probably won’t have friends, and probably will sit home alone all day. I am scared of living another year relying on weekend trips and visitors to make me happy. I am scared of another opportunity to significantly regress in my recovery. I am scared of losing friends (shoutout to C and A and B and everyone else who continues to put up with these concerns even when they are unwarranted). I am scared of being homesick, depression, and putting D through the hell he experienced last move.

Friday was my last day of school. I had a very difficult year – I truly don’t believe teaching is for me. But even so, I miss my kids, I miss my coworkers, and I miss having a purpose. I don’t know what I want to do in life right now, which makes me even more anxious.

Finally, this weekend was incredible. D and I met C, P, A, and J in NYC for a fun Memorial Day weekend. I miss all of them so much, so any time we get together makes me so happy. I also got the chance to meet up with B (which was absolutely fantastic, exactly what I hoped it would be, and I can’t wait to meet again). But, after spending such quality time with my closest friends, I am definitely having some post-trip blues.

All of this has snowballed into a big ball of anxiousness, sadness, and loneliness. I know I need to be productive and go to the store. I know I need to eat. I know I need to do the next right thing. But, I don’t want to. And this is how I know I’m falling back into that hole. I can feel the downward spiral and I haven’t reached the point of wanting to catch myself and climb out.

I also don’t want to open up about it. I mentioned it slightly to C, A, and B over the weekend. I even acknowledged that he was right when D called me on some old anxious habits (twisting my hair over and over again). But, I’m not ready to admit that I am struggling…again. I’m not ready to admit that after almost a year of relatively okay recovery with only slight bumps here and there, that I feel shaky and weak in my recovery right now. I’m not ready to reach out for support and disappoint everyone who has helped me reach this point. I’m not ready to feel ashamed.

So for now, I will sit and listen to “She Used To Be Mine” on repeat. Thank you Sara Bareilles.

“She’s imperfect, but she tries

She is good, but she lies

She is hard on herself

She is broken and won’t ask for help

She is messy, but she’s kind

She is lonely most of the time

She is all of this mixed up and baked in a beautiful pie

She is gone, but she used to be mine.”

Sara Bareilles

I should be studying. Instead, I am watching a Sara Bareilles concert that was live streamed on Yahoo last night.

I’ve mentioned before that music was, is, and will continue to be a huge part of my recovery and my journey through life in general. Sara Bareilles has played a huge role along the way. From “Gravity” to “Brave” and everything in between, I have found solace, strength, and hope in her authentic and transparent lyrics. Each song is a message and many feel like Sara is reaching out to say, “you are not alone,” “it’s okay to be you,” and “you are strong enough to face any situation head on.”

Last night, I finished reading her new book, “Sounds Like Me: My Life (So Far) In Song.” It was incredible! Each chapter gave a backstory to a particular song, giving it a personal meaning from Sara, alongside the meaning it holds for each listener. I wish it was longer! Each sentence was like an intimate conversation, showing Sara’s authenticity goes beyond her lyrics – she is the songs she writes.

One of my favorite paragraphs of the entire book is in the chapter, “Beautiful Girl.” This chapter is comprised of letters Sara wrote to herself throughout different phases of her life. One in particular reads,

“Things evolve into other things. Emotions do the same. Forever. Your best ally in all of these shifting seas is your faith in the fact that you are exactly where you are supposed to be. Stay put. Stay soft. Stay gentle and kind. Listen to your instincts. Meditate. Pray. Laugh as much as humanly possible. Pain is okay too. Say thank you for all of it. Feel proud that you have spent most of your life’s energy on cultivating a strong connection to your own soul and the will of your heart. It is leading you somewhere deeply satisfying but never perfect. Observe what is painful right now and see if you can stay courageous enough to share it wholly and honestly. Invite it into your house and be a good student. You are a patchwork quilt of all of these past selves, all these wounded little girls, and they are all here too, listening in some form or another…”

The connection Sara is able to make with her words is incredible. These letters left me speechless. As did the entire book. Each chapter left me feeling a little more understood and a little less alone in the crazy, unpredictable journey of life.

The final chapter was about a song from Sara’s new musical, Waitress. The song, “She Used To Be Mine,” gave me chills and left me in tears the first time I heard it…and the second, and the third.

I think the chorus is a place where a lot of women can see themselves:

“She’s imperfect but she tries

She is good but she lies

She is hard on herself

She is broken and won’t ask for help

She is messy but she’s kind

She is lonely most of the time

She is all of this mixed up

And baked in a beautiful pie

She is gone but she used to be mine.”

Once again, Sara’s lyrics left me feeling seen, heard, and validated. I’m not sure how she manages to do this EVERY SINGLE TIME, but she does!

Music, especially Sara’s music, has taught me so much throughout my journey. Important lessons about myself, about others, about bravery and strength, about honesty, about love, and so much more. Lessons that have changed me, shaped me, and guided me through this journey.

I highly recommend not only her music, but her book, to anyone who feels alone, broken, or a little messy. I also recommend it to any and everyone else. 🙂

And thanks to Sara for being open and honest and for sharing your talent with the world.

You are a brave, beautiful, badass!