Too Much Too Handle…Expectations on Ourselves

Too Much Too Handle…Expectations on Ourselves

“I am suppose to be further in life! Why haven’t I been able to do this right?  She did it this way, why wasn’t I able to do it like that? I am suppose to be making this much money, man I am such a stupid loser.”

Ever say this?  I know I have; sometimes a little bit too much.  I am always hard on myself.  I AM my worst critic.

When I was on drugs, I literally thought I was going to die high and there was no way around that.  What I thought about myself was not the greatest…I am too fat or I was a failure was the two biggest thoughts that constantly went across my mind.  Even getting high though, I had these preconceived notions, visions even for the way my life was suppose to turn out – Graduate at 18, go to college graduate at 23, get married at 25 and babies and a house by 28.  That was one heck of a plan and so much pressure I put on myself.  If I didn’t achieve this I was a failure.

This plan, these…expectations, set me up for resentments towards myself as well as others.  What I have learned in the last few years about resentments are that it always stems from me or a situation that happened in my life that started with… well me.  The choices I made in my life caused my life to go in a completely different direction.  Until I was able to let that go, to ACCEPT that things happen in life and it is not always going to turn out the way we EXPECTED.


Needless to say, the only thing that has rang true with the vision of my life was that I graduate high school at 18.  Shortly after 18, I became a stripper, but because stripper was a dirty word to me I called myself a “visual entertainer.” I was determined to show my parents that I could survive on my own, whatever it took.  That was a very short career for me because I didn’t want to disappoint anyone, I am a people pleaser, and it disappointed my dad.  Thinking I should be able to take on the world by myself, at age 18, was a very silly notion.

I am getting off topic a little, that will be for another post.  Due to the decision to work there and make it on my own, I got hung up in a lifestyle that takes a lot of people out of this world in a box.  One day in 2013, I woke up and looked around me; I was in an abusive relationship, in an empty apartment, I felt empty inside, and my relationships I had with other people were just as empty as the apartment I was living in was.

Now, completely off drugs and living a “normal” life (what is normal, anyway?), I have a whole different set of expectations.  Why can’t I figure this out?  I am 3 years clean, I shouldn’t be acting this way.  They are 3 years clean and on step 6, why am I only on step 5?  I should have a great paying job, graduated college and starting to pay off my debt by now, my Lord I am 32 what’s wrong with me?  Why am I never enough?

Egg quote

Why is it so hard for people to just accept life and live in the present?  Living in the present is a very hard concept, but if it can be done, will release a person from the expectations we put on ourselves.  Expectations have always caused me to self hate giving me the lack of self acceptance. I have learned to not place expectations on others because I do not want to be let down, but when it comes to me, it is so very hard.  In fact, 95% of the time the expectations on myself are what causes my greatest pains.

I was on the way to work today and was thinking, (That generally can get me in trouble.) but when you have a 40 minute commute there is plenty of time to think.  It hit me, everything stops in my life as a result of this.  Just looking back on my life the past couple of weeks it has become evident of this.  What I mean by this is because I think I should be able to do everything on my own, carry everything and be able to do it all flawlessly, I fail to realize that life can be harsh sometimes.  Recently, I have had a few “abrupt turns” in my path in life which has landed me completely stressed to the point of making myself sick and in the ER, dizzy from dehydration and bronchitis.

I say all this to make a point; to myself and whomever else this may reach, that I can’t carry this all by myself.  I expect perfection from an imperfect world and it causes nothing but depression, not eating, not sleeping, not drinking, and in the hospital.  It’s time to take life back.  Yes the bills might not get paid on time, yes I might not be a perfect recovery addict, yes I might have to make changes in my life to adapt to what is happening, and yes I MIGHT HAVE TO ACCEPT HELP.

Wooo boy, accept help, that’s a rough one!  Today, let’s look at life differently and let’s give ourselves a break.

Awareness is Key – Change is Possible

Awareness is Key – Change is Possible

From the blogs that I have read in the past I noticed a lot of the bloggers first posts were started with something to the effect of not sure how to start a first post.  Honestly, I do not know either, but something was posted to my FaceBook this morning that struck me hard that I figured would be a good first post because it is so near and dear to my heart.

Click to hear his story.

August 31, 2010 – The day the breath was taken out of me.  I can remember that day so vividly.  I was with my boyfriend at that time finishing up my work from home opportunity I was working on.  The smell of dinner was filling the house.  Then…the phone rang.  I answered it and it was static, but I heard my dad’s voice very vaguely.  They lived in Fredericksburg, VA.  They tried calling me back and just static again and faintly my dads voice.  It was breaking up so bad and I knew where my dad was heading at that time.  He was headed out to where my brother lived.  That was the only place where cell phone service goes to die.

Finally, a clear connection.  Then those words that will stay with me the rest of my life, “He’s gone.”  My little brother was dead.  He committed suicide.  All I can remember was coming to my knees not being able to breathe, to think.  I just wept this cry that I don’t think anyone has cried before and screamed no!

This is something that happens on a daily basis here America.  Unfortunately, it is a subject that most just sweep under the rug.  That won’t happen in my family and if it does we can’t talk about it.  It is disease that is sweeping the nation silently, but luckily it is gaining a little more exposure and people are starting to realize it as more than the person’s fault they are the way they are.

Addiction, depression, bipolar disorder…suicide.  My brother was an addict like me.  His suicide note said he felt like a bad person.  Most people think that addicts; people with depression or mental disorders, they are misunderstood or they are bad in some way.  We are not like that at all.  We are good people plagued with this “monster” inside us that screams to be fed, so we make bad decisions.  That’s it.  Some decisions are more permanent than others.

Not all my posts are going to be this serious, but in light of it being Mental Health Awareness Month and specifically Mental Health Awareness Week it is important that the message be carried that this is real, this does affect people and everyone around you.

My brother did not die in vain though.  Since 2010, my family and I have connected with other individuals in our community that have similar stories.  Just in the last 6 years the numbers are growing significantly.  My father has spoke at the Out of the Darkness walk last year to let other know about his story to keep my brother alive.  Without awareness there is no possibility for change.  Do not sweep this under the rug and let’s bring this to light!

I am not sure this will have the effect that I am hoping for, but if I can reach one person with this and just let them know YOU’RE NOT ALONE.  If you want help, it’s here.  Just reach out.