For as long as I can remember, I have had no idea who I am, and I didn’t feel comfortable in my own skin. My style has changed for as long as remember, being influenced by those who I spend the most time with, or didn’t feel as good as. I have avoided clothes that I liked, because I didn’t that I was good enough to wear them. In my darker anorexic days I would wear lots of layers of clothes to hide myself, but even recently I would wear clothes that are loose, or that I could just disappear in, so that no one would notice me. If I hung around someone more materialistic I would do my makeup even when I didn’t want to, I would wear clothes they would wear. When I got into yoga I wore only ‘yogi’ or hippie ish clothes. There is nothing at all wrong with doing those things, but it just didn’t feel like me all the time. Its more than just clothes too, my whole sense of self changes, down to my hobbies. If you looked at my bedroom you’d see evidence of so many different interests, all over the map, some of which I actively am interested in, others that I haven’t really touched lately, its phase ran out. This ended up making me feel really unsure of myself, no sense of self is a symptom of Borderline Personality Disorder, we are often referred to as chamillions, and it can be really frustrating, and disheartening because you have this feeling like you’re….unbalanced or without roots. I’m not really sure how to describe the feeling honestly. I never really figured out who I was, what style I was, what I valued, what I wanted to spend my time doing. Partially because my grandmother picked out my clothes until I was way too old, but also because I never really felt safe to take time to figure out who ‘me’ was. Turns out, standing up to the emotional/psychological abuse was what I needed to start to create my own ‘safe space’ and start to allow myself to find out.
At first it was small, I started to realize that my reason for not buying clothes that I felt good in was ‘I’ll look good when I’m skinny’. How ridiculous is that?? So one day I went shopping for clothes, I gave myself a budget, I went for clothes that I actually liked. Ripped jeans (no they were not expensive, they were like 20$), band-tees, more punky than I ever really let myself be. Honestly I don’t know the terminology, I have no knowledge of what any of the adjectives mean, but fuck it, I liked it. I got my septum pierced, I cut my hair, and coloured it red. I wear make up some days, some days I don’t and I still wear those other styles, but I am doing it because thats what I want, and that’s what I feel comfortable with. For the first time in my life I am starting to feel like I know who I am. I am starting to feel like I can express myself, I feel like I am safe to explore my style, wear clothes that no longer hide me, but make me stand out, and fuck it. Why not? I found working with body positivity, and intuitive eating LIFE CHANGING. Honestly, every single person needs to. There is a book called ‘Big Girl’ which was hella amazing and helpful, there are a few people on instagram, if you follow me there I recently tagged a bunch of them.
Anyway, off on a tangent. For a very long time, my sense of self, my sense of security, stability, self worth was standing on a rocky boat. I can’t really put words to it yet, because its still happening, and I’m in the thick of it, but its like I was being thrown right back into those horrible times-being triggered constantly. I have set my boundaries, I have decided that I deserve to be treated better than I have let myself be treated for a very long time. I decided I was not worthless, and I really haven’t been all along. Having this new freedom has brought up its own questions: Am I really a quiet person, or was I forced to be that way? I feel like I’m not as quiet as I’ve led myself to believe.
I’ll tell you what I do know about myself.
I’m sensitive (what you knew that? Huh. I guess its pretty fucking obvious). I feel and react so deeply to things going on around me that the other day when I was teaching class (yoga for those that don’t know, my happy place) I was mentioning all the amazing things that happen in your body physically when you breathe and I was so excited about how cool the body is that I FUCKING STARTED CRYING. It was a couple tears, and but omg. I am the kind of person that when a regular customer comes in and tells me positive news about their life I tear up. When I can see that the lone old man who comes in everyday to read his book is sad, it physically hurts. I’m the kind of person that loves animals and nature so much it spins my mood around instantly. I’m the kind of person that loves feeling like I can take care of myself, I can stand up for myself, I can survive a zombie apocalypse (don’t ask why thats my measure, its my goal at the gym: zombie apocalypse preparedness.). I love yoga, I love helping people more than anything I’ve ever done. I love halloween, I apparently love christmas (jury is still out). I have a stupid sense of humour, a good dad joke or pun? Oh yeah, buddy. I could keep going, but none of this is relavent really haha. My point is, I’m me. I know that, and that will change, I’m sure. Thats the whole point of life really, is change.
Thanks for listening.
If you have Borderline Personality Disorder, and have a unsure sense of self, what is something you do that just lights your whole body up? Follow that. Let yourself take a second to check in with you. Because you, I’ll wager a bet, are a fucking amazing person.
Over and out.
2 thoughts on “Who I am(?)”
Rebecca, this is the most positive blog I have read to date! When you started blogging I wondered where this would lead. Fortunately, you have found your voice and confidence while “outing” yourself. A very brave thing to do. I wish Judy had the same confidence. She had admitted to “depression”, but, as I think you know, that is only a part of the story. I hope she will stop self-stigmatizing, but my hopes are not very high. Congratulations for being a very courageous, positive niece.
Here is a link I think will be of interest.
One of these days I may surprise you in your yoga class!
Thanks for reading. I think its important to talk about for raising awareness alone, let alone all the people it may help (myself included)
She may yet, its not easy!