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Thursday, June 16, 2011

I'm just a sucker with no self esteem

“I took everything so personally as a child. I felt everyone was always laughing at me and thinking I was stupid. I remember one time shouting out ‘Look Dad, there’s the Waverly Munchpickle (municipal) gold course.’ It brought a round of laughter, which, to me, meant that I was laughable. Frightened of failure, I stopped speaking in public and began to withdraw from anything involving social activities. Life had, quite simply, become too risky. Failure and not fitting in lurked around every corner.

Girls, as I knew, could be very bitchy so, feeling frightened of not fitting in, I alienated myself. My reasoning was that if I was inaccessible to others, then I couldn’t be rejected. I cried almost every day because I felt like I didn’t have any friends and that noone liked me.

At school I was always afraid that even if I did try I would fail and that would really mean that I was more stupid that I thought I was, if that was possible.

I can’t always see my good qualities and talents, although I seem to find it very easy to find bad ones. I have intense feelings that can be both positive and negative. I tend to take everything said to me far more personally than it was meant and overanalyse things.
My sensitivity is misinterpreted as snobbishness when really all I want is to be accepted for who I really am. I say sorry all the time for things that aren’t my fault. I have days when I loathe myself, I hate my reflection. I have days when I feel I will never be right for the world. I have days when I think everyone hates me, that I’m a burden to my family and society and that life wont get any easier.”

Those quotes are from Bronte Cullis' biography, describing her life and growing up to be plagued with an eating disorder. These quotes, I may have written them myself.

So what?

So, today I had an epiphany.

I was wandering around the floor at work, looking a little lost, trying to locate someone who turns out, had gone home. Walking back to my desk, my name gets called out. My heart starts racing, I start blushing and I turn around in shock and awe. It was nobody special, just a very-possibly-gay team leader from the other side of the floor checking in to make sure I was okay...I did look a little confused.

When I'd sat back down at my desk, I stopped to question myself why my body had illicited such a bizarre reaction to someone simply calling my name. After a few minutes of contemplation (my computer was being painfully slow, thus plenty of time to ponder the deeper meanings of life), it hit me. I have really, really low self esteem. My body wasn't blushing from a crush, I wasn't having random heart palpitations, I was simply in shock...my body was reacting in a 'fight or flight' fashion.

You might say 'No shit, I coulda told you that you had low self esteem'. Well duh, a girl who self harmed and made herself sick after every meal isn't a candidate for 'confidence of the year' award. I knew I was down on myself, but to realise the extent of my opinion of myself did shock me a little.

Now, when I say fight or flight, I don't mean I was getting ready to go some fisticuffs with a boss...I mean I realised that I am so sure that I am invisible to the world, that someyone knowing my name, who I don't interact with on a regular basis, shocked me to the point where my body didn't know what to do with itself. I guess I'm just lucky I didn't wet myself.

When I realised this, I was a little bit in awe. How could I be so shocked by someone knowing my name? Most people would assume that work colleagues would know their names. Why am I such a crazy person?

I tend to blush when people are nice to me. I am obscenely shy, and when someone compliments me or is simply nice to me, I assume sarcasm. I struggle to hold conversations because I am always positive that the person is hating every moment of talking to me, that they are simply praying for a way to get out. I have such a fear of rejection, no, I am so certain of rejection, that I push people away before they even have a chance to get to know me. This obviously leads to a big painful circle, I come off looking like a cold, rude bitch who nobody wants to talk to because I'm so sure that nobody wants to talk to me.

I know I have rejection issues, I know where they stem from (but that's another blog altogether), and as I said earlier, my low self esteem is not a big shocker, what got me today though, is that I never realised how invisible I thought I really was...or...how invisible I actually feel I am. Just because I can recognise the issue, does not make it fixed.

I am slightly sleep exhausted, so I'm not entirely sure where I am going with this, but basically I just needed to get this little shock out of my system. I guess it makes sense now why I blush every time someone is nice to me (though it may come across as flirting, playing coy). It makes sense why I don't put myself out there to talk to new people/train harder in derby/do something amazing at work/foxy myself up too much when I go out. I knew I did these things, but I thought it was just because I didn't care, people weren't worth the effort, they aren't going to notice anyway.

I guess I'm a little confused, as typically people with low self esteem tend to have the belief that they don't deserve certain things, or that they aren't good enough. Don't get me wrong, I have these feelings too, but generally I DO feel like I deserve those things, or I AM good enough. It's the invisibility, the averageness, the forgetability of myself that is the problem. The fact that I can do something great that nobody will notice, leading to the classic, why bother?

I want to love myself. I want to see what people tell me they see? Why am I so sure of this mediocrity, this invisibility, this godawful forgetableness that I am in awe when somebody remembers my name?

Do I actually dislike these people, or is it just that I am shutting them off before they have a chance to judge me first?

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