Baggage....We all have it. Not everyone knows it but we all carry around our past in a small little bag of unlit fireworks in our head. Or at least that is how it feels to me.
If someone or something around us causes it to ignite everybody better watch out. For me, you all know by now if you read my other blogs, its fear. Things that scare me set off my anxiety like a firecracker soaring into the air sparks spitting out in all directions. Logic loses, I lose, everyone around me loses. Why....because when something ignites that fear it is really freaking hard to dampen it unless you have a lot of tools in place. Growing up If I noticed anything new on my body I was always 100% positive it was cancer and I had days, maybe weeks left to my life. This has gone on since I was 5 years old. Since I learned of my mom's cancer. I can not tell you how many times I was sure I had cancer or some other illness that would take my life growing up. How many times something on the news sent my sirens swirling that I must keep my children home from school, that we must never get on public transportation, that any movie theater should be avoided, that any place people gather should never see my feet again. My point is, I get it. I get that we all have something in our minds that cause a small July 4th party in our brains. I still get freaked out by things but it doesn’t take over hours and days of my life. It doesn’t spread into every thought in my head like it used to. Why? Because I have more tools in my head today that I know how to use then I did back then. I guess as Glenda the good witch in the Wizard of Oz says to Dorthy “You have had the power along” referring to clicking her shoes three times. I had the power too but I didnt know how to use it.
I think of one of the most famous people. Carrying around his baggage. Chasing what he never had growing up. Michael Jackson. He is a public figure but everyone knows his story. In my OPINION, he never got to be a kid. So as he gained wealth and freedom all he did was chase a childhood and sense of security he never had.
I get it, I get that for me I am chasing a fear that never got squashed. A fear I knew as a child. A fear of a cancer that killed my mother and took her away from me. So I chase security too.
It makes me wonder what everyone else chases. What happened or did not happen to them growing up? What causes their fireworks to launch into the sky in their minds?
If you are person who reads this and says nothing. I don't have any baggage. To you, I say BULL SHIT. To you, I say you just might not be aware what your baggage is but you carry it too. If you live on this earth and have feelings that have ever been hurt than you carry something. For your feelings to be hurt means you have a part of your heart this hurts. If someone else can say or do something that can cause your sparks to fly and make you get angry then that tells me you need to dive deeper into that feeling. If someone else can make you feel bad about yourself you need to ask yourself why does that bother me? Why can what they say or do upset me? Why am I giving them that power to control how I feel about me?
I think about years ago in my life. When things would spook me. I would hear something that caused me to worry. How I would race to pick up my phone. Hoping someone in my life could squash those fears and tell me everything was going to be alright. Do you know what I discovered over time. That no one had the power to ever say enough to make me feel alright. It had to come from within. I had to find a way to feel alright all on my own. Nobody else could hold the key to that answer but me. No one else could ever make me feel as safe as my heart and soul needed to feel. I wanted them to be able to but nothing gave me the peace I was after. I will tell you this if bombs were dropping and I was in a secure bunker 50000 miles away. I would still be scared I was going to die if not from the bombs than cancer or something else. So if you are person that looks to find safety in someone elses reassurance and words I encourage you to ask yourself why. I had to find that answer sooner than I expected with the loss of my mother. I searched for reassurance in the years that passed. Nobody could ever fill that void and fear in my heart. I had to find a way to be my own voice. To be my own reassurance. It doesn't matter where on earth I go, I always will have my head filled with my thoughts attached to me. So I figured I better get working on this skill or start drowning in all these fears.
I am going to give you another example here about a lighter topic to see if it connects with you. Maybe someone tells me "I don't like my curly hair either." Strange I would think because I did not ask and I am happy with my curly hair. But if that statement were to piss me off then I have to think why. Why would I let some others random opinion rock my boat? Maybe its because I am somewhat insecure about my hair. Maybe at times I wished it were different. I don't know. But I highly doubt the entire problem rests on the shoulders of the person who said they don't like their own curly hair either.
Why does logic lose. Because logic only hears your own side of the story. Logic is coming from your perspective that might be tainted by your own opinion and fears. You perception is your reality as we all know. So lets say a driver cuts your off. You get fired up, pissed, slam on the horn. How dare they do that to you races through your brain. I'm going to interject here. "They did nothing to you personally. They didn't cut you off because they hate you. They were just doing their own life. They were not thinking at all about fuck that person." Maybe their wife was in labor, maybe if they were late one more day at work they were getting fired. This is their problem. So why are you getting so mad about it? Yes, they might have put you or your car in danger but it was not a personal attack. Your adrenaline can surge but do you honestly want to chase them down and yell at them. If so, you might want to keep reading
I am telling you take a moment and reflect. See if any of it hits a spark inside of you. If so, it might be worth diving into a little deeper. Why does it make you feel bad, does it make you feel angry, unliked, alone, scared..... There are 1000s of people with therapy degrees wanting to help you find that answer. Talk to someone. I am telling you the sooner you find peace with what upsets you the happier your day to day life will be. I know exactly who I am and exactly the fear the lights up. inside me. I accept it, I know it is there. (read my blog "monsters in my head" or "anxiety") I have been to 10 years of therapy, I take Zoloft regularly, I exercise regularly, I do all kinds of things from eating clean to staying on a sleep schedule to try to stay in balance. So when the random things in life pop up, and want to light every firework in my head off, I have a very solid foundation to turn too. I am well rested, well fed with no sugar highs and lows, no alcohol highs or lows, exercised, on regular medication, from years of therapy deeply aware of my insecurities that flare up. I am ready to handle what comes my way the best I can any single day. Am I perfect, ABSOLUTELY NOT. Do things fly out of my control at times. DEFINITELY. Does it happen as much as it used to, no way! So that is a win. I live my life happier day to day. I am in less fear. I feel more able to handle obstacles that get thrown at me. My quality of life is drastically better because of it.
My challenge to you, next time you get super pissed off. Take a breath. Think where could this anger be coming from. Is it really the driver in the other car that cut me off or is it something much deeper. I wish you luck in your journey.