Friday, August 8, 2014

New Look on New Life...And Blog Shift

So sorry I have been gone and never got to posting the play-by-play for victory day, but I will and it was a great victory Praise God! Anyway…reason I have been away is I moved to TN to start the new chapter of the rest of my life here at grad school. It’s a fresh start. Yes, people know about my disorder since I shared it in my application since it’s the reason I want to enter this field, but it’s still a new place to discover and share the new me in true recovery and I am excited. Along with this new life, I want a new outlook. I want to quite living in regrets of the past, or worries of the future, and live in the joys of today. Even on my worst days I want to find three things to praise God for.

This all came yesterday on my first day and it being move-in day. It started off okay, but then I got here and started to move. I started to miss home. While still in the car I thought I had forgot some pics of me and my dad and suddenly my mind raced to me not being able to succeed in grad school (yes I jumped from not having photos to failing). I got through that rough patch with prayer that brought clarity over the fact it was just photos I could get when my mom visited.  I opened the apartment I will be sharing with 4 people and was shocked by how small it looked. Suddenly my mind jumped to how my roomates were going to hate me. I was going to be in everyone’s way. I was going to hate school. And I needed to go home. Then came the hours and hours of unpacking and the stress of realizing I needed to go out and get groceries still. I then discovered the nearest grocery store was 15 mins away and I ended up having to spend more money than I had. This all left me with not being able to eat dinner till 11:30 pm and still having two snacks and ending the night convinced I was going to fail grad school, have roomates who hated me, bomb my interview with Mellow mushroom, be fired from my assistantship, go into debt, bankrupt my family, and never accomplish my dream. Even though NOTHING in my day pointed to that.

You see I have done this my whole life. Jumped from one tiny thing to huge failures. I somehow jumped to failing grad school, when I haven’t even gotten the syllabus for the first class. My apartment seemed small till I unpacked and got situated, but still that had nothing to do with my roomates. There was no part of my day that involved mellow mushroom yet I was convinced I would never get the job. My move was preparing me for my assistantship, so being fired was the farthest thing from being true right then. At least there was some reasoning to the financial worries, but spending an extra 100 dollars to get my room ready isn’t unheard of and I am getting paid tomorrow, so going broke and then somehow bankrupting my family again isn’t very logical. Of course since I was already hopping down the bunny trail of failure…never accomplishing my dream was my next big, unrelated, unrealistic fear. I let these moments take over my mind and ended up going to sleep convinced I would be packing up and going back home soon. Now let me tell you what happened.

I woke up with the sun streaming in through my minds and smiled as I looked around my room. It felt like mine and I actually liked it. I got ready and felt nice in my new clothes. I went to my mellow mushroom interview and got hired on the spot (I start tomorrow). I also found out they have a parking lot so I don’t have to walk at night.  I went to my assistantship and found out it is far more laid back than I thought and I can even wear flip flops. Also discovered it is right across from where I am living. It was amazing day there too and I got paired up with a second year student who showed me the ropes and made me feel so ready for classes and that they wouldn’t be so hard. She also recognized my recovery tattoo and we got to talk about my recovery and she didn’t judge me at all. I then went and got more groceries I needed and didn’t feel bad about it (even found a lot on sale).  I came back home and still had to eat late, but this time it made me feel strangely grown up. That I was so busy with work and such that I had to come home and immediately eat because it had been such a busy day I hadn’t gotten to it. And I was cooking in my own kitchen in my own apartment. I began falling in love with grad school, with my apartment, with everything. Oh…and those roomies who were supposed to hate me…they sent me a message just to see that I moved in okay…even some of my family hasn’t asked that yet. Suddenly I felt hopeful and happy about the move. Why? Because I was choosing to focus on the positives of the moment. Were there bad parts to my day. Sure there were. But I didn’t dwell on them…and it was a better day. And it is much easier to eat when you feel better about your day and yourself.

So I want this to be my new approach. To not live in regrets of taking too long to pack or forgetting this or missing this or whatever. To not focus on the fears of the future or let myself go into tailspins that have no basis in reality. I want to just experience, enjoy, and find beauty in the present moment. Even if it sucks right then…to find some part to be happy for. I want to shift my focus. And that may mean a shift here too. I may still blog about my struggles, but with a focus on the solution and how I will end the struggle. Or I may not blog till after I get out of the struggle so I can share my victory. I am entering a strengths-based field and I am ready to start living a strengths-based life. To focus on the good in my day and the people around me and find the freedom that brings. Whose with me!

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