just breathe…

just breathe

I’ve always wanted my blog to be a place of growth, but sometimes it’s difficult for me to put into words what exactly I’m feeling. I initially started this blog as a virtual scrapbook, but also had every intention of holding myself accountable and sadly, that hasn’t happened. Accountable for what, you might ask? Happiness. Plain and simple. Maybe that’s why I envy bloggers who are able to write so freely; they’re brave enough to put themselves out there and I’m not.

I tend to hide behind sarcasm. I make jokes, whether they’re about me or a difficult situation I’m experiencing, and brush things aside. I dislike confrontation and would rather bottle up my emotions. I never ask for help. I’m stubborn. I don’t open up easily and God forbid I ever talk through my problems because that would make me weak. Instead of living in the moment, I overanalyze, problem solve and look at everything with a critical eye. I’m not a glass half full type of girl and I’m afraid I never will be. I feel alone.

I constantly worry about the future — things I cannot control — and my mind becomes my worst enemy. On more than one occasion, this fear that sometimes consumes me has become full-blown anxiety. Instead of allowing life to unfold naturally, I attempt to control anything and everything. Because of loss I’ve experienced in the past, I’m terrified of my body failing me or that my loved ones might not always be here. I’m irrational.

One would think that being self-employed (my blog and being an awesome dog mom, right?!) and no longer having to experience stress at work would rectify the situation, but it hasn’t. At all. Because more time alone means more time to think. Sometimes I want to scream from the top of my lungs and ask myself what the hell is wrong. Sometimes I want to write because once the words start to flow, I feel better. I don’t, though. I guess I’m afraid of letting down my family.

Even though I paste pretty, positive photos and text all over my blog, this is a constant struggle for me. And you should know that. Because we’re all human and everyone has their own problems. And I guess my biggest problem is me…

I want to be real. I want to write and feel better about myself. And even though I still want to document the things that make me happy — I also want to share the things that don’t. And I hope you won’t mind.

       
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Filed Under: Anxiety, Lifestyle46 Comments
  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/06275130482939183471 Patricia

    I’m sending you hugs. You’re so brave for opening up. It’s a scary thing to do. This really touched me :)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/13673033206542527050 Jenn

    Oh I am definitely the worst about opening up and talking through my feelings. I’d rather keep them to myself and go on with the day. But you should never, ever feel like you can’t express yourself if you are wanting to.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/04685253944514672324 Jennifer

    Hugs to you, Rachel. I understand how you feel but you should know that we’re all here to support you. I think your blog is really interesting and I have enjoyed getting to know you through it. :)

    • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12050447967374041694 Rachel

      Thanks for your support. It means a lot!

  • http://erin-looplooks.myopenid.com/ Loop Looks

    We’re not perfect people and our blogs shouldn’t have to reflect that. We all have ups and downs and THAT’S what our blogs should reflect.

    • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12050447967374041694 Rachel

      I agree. There’s something so freeing about being able to open up on your blog.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/17538576313777740739 Whitney Ellen

    You go girl! This is what I’m talking about!! Love love love raw and real blogging so much.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/14649925876032481504 Amanda

    Love this. I think it’s something all bloggers struggle with from time to time. The best you can do is be honest, good or bad. People will always appreciate honesty and we can all relate to it on some level.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/07177081269343759076 Treasure Tromp

    don’t mind one bit – in fact I think that we’re all looking forward to it

  • http://themovetoamerica.wordpress.com/ themovetoamerica

    Sharing these things can always be scary, but you did it and you did it so eloquently that it will help others who experience the same/similar.

    ♡ Molly

    • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12050447967374041694 Rachel

      Yes, hopefully I’m able to help someone else!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/11970846797105056006 tiarenie

    Good for you for being honest. I also struggle with worrying about EVERYTHING! Would love to hear if theres anything you do to tackle that!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/11831104363050390524 Adriana

    Don’t even say you aren’t brave enough! You are and the only difference between you and any other blogger is comfort level and timing. If you aren’t ready to post about something and you rush it, you’d feel worse about it. It’s ok to wait on things but it’s important to psh yourself out of your comfort zone sometimes too. I think you’re doing an incredible job! and believe me, EVERYONE is struggling!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/06625001742281959799 Ashley

    You’re not alone. I feel the same way most of the time. I actually created my blog as an escape so I could focus on happy things. You’re very brave to keep your blog open and honest, hopefully you find that we can all relate and that will bring some comfort :)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/15881137582123546269 Taylor

    I totalllllly agree with you. Sometimes blogging can be such a paradox, we all tend to focus on “enjoying the little things” and “living in the present” and being grateful, and sometimes it isn’t easy. I took a mini vacation from Pinterest because I got so sick of all of the “be fearful of mediocrity” and “just buy a ticket and follow your dreams” sort of thing. It’s hard!!!
    I appreciate your honesty and think that this is a beautiful, beautiful snapshot of REAL life. I am so guilty of sugar coating and blogging halfheartedly. Your problems, however flawed they seem to you, are beautiful! You’re so introspective and reflective which is really so amazing.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/11227258025124298382 la petite lulu

    You are a brave woman Rachel! It’s not easy to sit and type those words, I know. Thank you for sharing your heart xo

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/18290876595953041009 Nikki

    Thanks for this! you’re a strong, wonderful woman and as someone who suffers from anxiety, I applaud you putting it out there too!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/14472582071045116526 Danielle Carroll

    I just found your blog through Raven, and I just wanted to say that I can totally relate to this post! (and recently just blogged about it myself). I too am my own worst enemy who tends to overanalyze and let anxiety get the best of me… you are not alone, girlie!! And (I may be biased because I’ve done this before) I think it’s absolutely fine to blog about the not-so-sweet in life, because ultimately, I think reader’s are looking for the real, authentic you. This post was real and authentic and that’s what drew me in! Now I’m hooked :) Can’t wait to read more and follow along with your journey!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/06633314597724406656 Katie H.

    Yes…keep writing and keep sharing your beautiful heart!! It would far easier to hide behind cheerfulness and laughter, but so many others (myself included) need your honesty and your openness!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/03446417961676422054 Megan

    I can relate to this so much! I want to be honest and talk about happiness more as well but it can be scary to put all your feelings out there. And oh those anxious feelings… they are of the devil, I tell you. Seriously. They are the worst. I’m so grateful you are being so honest! Motivates me to try harder as well. Great post!!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12252480667870116472 misty

    this is totally your space.
    wherein, YOU make the rules.
    and if anyone has anything to say about it, tough.
    i think a lot of us struggle with this {deep down inside}.

    :)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/16954804123165852845 Living in Another Language

    Rachel,
    You’re a wonderful lady! I love it when people can open up and be honest. It’s relatable, real, and overall refreshing. I think so many times we get stuck looking at other people’s lives thinking: “Why can’t my life be as perfect as hers? She seems to always have it together.” What we don’t think about is that online people have the freedom to leave out certain aspects of their life if they wish.
    Im a HUGE advocate for real talk. I’m a huge fan of optimism in my own life, so it’s hard for me to break it down and talk it like it is. Thank you so much for this post girl. I know how you feel. I feel the same quite often living in this foreign land, not being able to see anyone in my family for almost two years, and having only a couple friends.
    -Amanda | Living in Another Language

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/01229545374401761032 ffprncez

    this is a great post. it would be unrealistic for us to believe that everything is perfect for you all the time. its not that way for anyone ever! This is your piece of cyberspace and you should use it how you see fit. Honesty is the best policy but it also reminds us, the readers, that you are human, as we all are. it helps us to not feel alone, as indicated by some of the other comments. I do also struggle with being my own worst enemy. I don’t have the nerve to blog about it on my blog because my family members read it and I am afraid of letting them down. So I can relate, as I am sure many others can.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/15258482617273031816 Kailagh OKeefe

    Worrying about the future is a huge thing for me, its always on my mind. Something that I have been really trying to work on is not doing that, enjoying the moment we are living in now. As a new blogger, I have been thinking of things a lot, in terms of accountability. Glad to know I am not alone, and glad to tell you I’m always here!

    – Kailagh
    lovealwaysfreckles.blogspot.com

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/07718785240496873133 Andrea Derr

    This is real & honest and I love it! This is your blog and your place to say whatever you want – thank you for sharing with us! Hang in there & know you’re not the only one who struggles with these types of things – I’m constantly worrying about things, I guess it’s just in my nature. Hugs to you <3

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/14360633957190543689 Sarah S.

    I love this… this post is definitely a great start in the direction you want to be. and like other’s have said, you are definitely not alone.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05575653400171175200 Casey

    Raw, real, honest…it’s refreshing! Great post, Rachel! I, too, struggle with the quietness that comes along with being alone all day. In fact, it almost got the best of me back in 2009 when I began having panic attacks because I just had too much darn time to sit, think, and overanalyze things. Your mind can definitely be your own worst enemy…a fact I also know all too well. If you ever need to chat, I’m around! I feel we have very similar struggles, girl!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05022023043718407104 Bonnie Rose

    I love this because its real and so honest of yourself as a person. Which is why I love following your blog. But what really struck me about your post today is how much I relate to it and that alone can tell you that you are not alone. I saw all these wonderful comments already here and know that its okay to fail and its okay to worry. But you dont have to let your thoughts consume you. If you ever need someone to talk to I am here, despite any time differences. ;) x

    Bonnie Rose | a Compass Rose

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/13703573853893790656 Gina Howie

    It takes a lot of bravery to show your vulnerability and show your true colors. I truly admire your authenticity. I think everyone strives to do it but it is often easier said than done. It really is not easy to always be able to put into words how you are feeling. The blogging world is incredibly interesting and I spent years just reading many blogs before having the courage to start my own when I became an expat. It has been a real eye opening journey of discovery and growth for myself. It is a real journey to figure out what you want to divulge and what will remain private. Ultimately the wonderful thing about having a blog is that is truly is your space to use however you want to. I think you have achieved your goal of creating a place of growth.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05052264800064704048 Madi I

    I struggle with the same thing. Every day it is a choice I have to make to be happy, and some days I lose the battle and some days I win.

    Chin up, doll. :)

    Madi

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/15806065790207418929 Lisette

    You’re not alone in this. There are so SO many things I wish I could write about but I’m always afraid of family/friends reading…hugs! And a glass of Chardonnay for you :)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12518239232924662332 SweetMarie83

    I really admire you for sharing this. It’s not always easy to be so open and honest. And I think a lot of people are their own worst enemies. We all have our irrational issues, and sometimes it helps to put it out there and know you’re not alone. That’s the great thing about blogging – it doesn’t always have to be sunshine and roses, sometimes it can be the darker side of things, too.
    Also, I SO hear you on the self-employed/being alone thing. I work from home plus I have a job that notoriously makes people crazy (I’m a writer), so I live inside my own head most of the time plus I’m alone a lot so my mind’s constantly going. Anyway, you’re not alone! We’re here for you! :-)

    ~Marie @ Lost and Found ~ Reflections of a Daydreamer

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05323457509870105643 Jeanine Tribley

    Hi Rachel,

    You are def not alone here, so do not worry. I feel like this at times too.

    Keep up the brilliant work on this Blog and please open up whenever you feel like – excellent post.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/03481775343584575260 Casey Martin

    Thank you for being so open and honest. You are not alone and we all have our own ways of dealing with things… but the fact that you’re willing to put it out there on this beautiful blog of yours is a huge step already :)

    • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12050447967374041694 Rachel

      Thank you! I’m glad I published this post. I feel better already.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/02992184269654417977 Alyssa Gapske

    You are never ever alone. I have suffered with anxiety for years! There are so many of us out there. Email me if you ever want to!

    • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12050447967374041694 Rachel

      Thank you for your kind words! Since this post, I’ve realized that so many other bloggers are experiencing the same issues. We can all deal with it together. :)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12445081275530729227 jackie jade

    yes yes – I feel this way too! there is always more going on in our lives than what we put out on our blogs. so then it can feel like we aren’t putting our whole selves out there. love your honesty dear! and i’m sure if you decide to share more struggles on your blog, you will have a ton of supportive readers going through something similar!
    — jackie – jade and oak

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/10077899015604696292 Ζήνα

    there is nothing better than being real! and this is something amazing in your blog! keep writing :)

    Zina (new follower, efzin-creations.blogspot.com)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/13011807225792787568 Casey Aslan

    Love this post and hate that I’m just seeing it! I applaud you for not hiding anymore and for feeling a release from opening up! It lifts weight off your shoulders and the blogging world is an awesome support system :)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12060998428597019589 Jessa Olson

    I’m sending you tons of hugs, but seriously are you in my brain? I struggle with those same things ALL the time.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/01079473916722620673 Erika @ CHiMERiKAL.com

    Wow, Rachel! Thanks for sharing this — I totally relate to this! So much! I think it’s brave of you to open up and be vulnerable with your blog and want it to be more than just an artificial snapshot, but a realistic scrapbook of the whole picture. I know I sometimes envy the people who look so happy, but I don’t necessarily want to post only that if I’m not feeling that completely. I want to genuinely be “the glass is full.” But saying that is difficult and requires a lot of bravery. :)

    Thanks for sharing!

    –Erika
    http://www.chimerikal.com

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/11145690467668965596 Jane

    I can completely relate and have been thinking about doing a very similar post on my blog. It’s hard to open up though. Lots of virtual hugs.

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  • Jessa Olson

    You have taken the words right out of mouth!