How do you become a warrior?

Sometimes I get caught up in these moments of bravery and motivation and I proclaim “Yeah! I can do that!”. And by that I mean be a motivational speaker, public figure or a successful blog writer. But it never takes long for the anxiety to step in, take over and shut me down. I revel in peoples courage and soak up the inspiration their stories have to offer and I think to myself, “I’d like to be that person. I’d like to share my story and be able to inspire others.” And for a while, I’m fairly certain I could have been. I was a warrior of sorts. I was determined and strong, facing each new hardship with a brave face and refusing to accept defeat. But then everything just… stopped.

I’ve seen more doctors in a year and a half than most do in a lifetime. Surgeons of different kinds, chiropractors, massage therapists, physical therapists, acupuncturists, naturopaths, pain doctors, you name it… And not just one, either. I’ve seen multiple in each profession. But there comes a time when there’s simply nothing left. There’s one possible option available and the risks are too great so it’s not really on the table at this time. None the less, I tell myself they’re always coming out with new treatment options and new cures, I watch TED talks and follow public figures on social media, trying desperately to stay inspired and to hold onto the hope that seems so very far away at times. I look at these public figures and wonder how they do it, how are they able to stay so positive when I am struggling just to get dressed and/or get through another day… I constantly think of all the people who have told me “it could be worse” and I try to bully myself into a tougher mindset.

The severity of my depression wasn’t seen until my late 20’s when I finally began to open up and lean on those in my circle. When I finally had the courage to call them and talk instead of cutting myself. When I would be brave enough to speak up about my thoughts of suicide and how I was truly feeling inside. I remember my Mom being in tears as she told me she always knew I was depressed (I was in counseling from an early age) but she never knew just how bad it was… So I began to tell her about it, in hopes she’d understand me a little better. Anyways, I say that because I spent my entire life “faking it til I made it”, stuffing emotions and pain in a box and putting on a smile so no one would ever know. And it worked. But then I had surgery, almost died and that was the beginning of experiencing a physical pain that is too great to be smiled through and everyone sees it. It’s all they ever ask about because I’ve lost everything else… Everything I used to be is no more and I’m stuck trying to navigate this new life that feels so grey and broken. And I think “if I can just be tough and be brave then I can be like those public figures, too!” But it isn’t that simple. I don’t feel brave and tough anymore… I feel small and riddled with anxiety, physical pain and depression. My PTSD has presented all kinds of new symptoms. Once upon a time I was bright and shiny. I was able to light up a room with my smile. Now, I struggle to walk into the grocery store, to park in a handicap space, to go out in public for fear of being looked at and judged… And bullying myself doesn’t have the motivating effect it once did on me. These days it seems to be a solid encouragement to stay in bed and cuddle with my dog. She is, without question, my purpose in life. And I know these people faced this challenge in the journey of their struggle, too. But they somehow triumphed and conquered greatness, despite all the hardships and heartache. Before my life came crumbling down, I too was destined for greatness. Successful and conquering one dream at a time. Now, my life is at a standstill and I just can’t seem to find the strength in me to be great again.. I feel lost. I feel hopeless…

One thought on “How do you become a warrior?”

  1. you know what you are able to do extremely well?

    write!
    express yourself
    Your spelling, grammar, style are all exceptional. You are able to weite descriptions that make a reader understand exactly the sentiment, emotions, situation

    we have had very similar parallels in life. I do believe things happen for a reason

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