Never, not ever, did I think I would be using normal as my word of the week! Not even as a word of the day, or the hour! And yet, since changing my name, I have felt that. I have felt good. Happy. ‘Normal.’
Let’s not get into a discussion about what normal even means, and let’s just agree that I have never been it. My anxiety held me back from any kind of normality, especially when it came to social interaction. My depression, bipolar, stopped me feeling joy a lot of the time. But now I feel it, joy, happiness, and it is amazing. And I feel it consistently; for two weeks!
On Thursday I felt accepted at my re-naming party, I socialised with ease and enjoyed myself. It was a revelation. Since then I have walked around a local town, alone, and felt confident doing so. I have been back to bowling, attended a friend’s barbecue complete with people I’d never met before, and had a good time at the expat lunch bunch despite it being incredibly loud.
I feel free. I feel strong. I feel happy with myself, and in myself.
Part of the transformation, I’m sure, has to do with my therapist, she has been, and continues to be, incredible. She empowers me. But this, this normality, this has come from within.
My journal entries are filled with happiness and good stuff now. For two whole weeks I have been easily writing my 3 good things, not sitting for minutes on end desperately searching for something. My self-care is pretty on point too; I am regularly ticking off my 5 self-care ‘jobs’ and only skipping odd ones occasionally, and I’m sleeping well, so I don’t think this is hypomania. I’m going to bed later, but getting about 8 to 9 hours and feeling good for the whole day. I no longer collapse into bed when the clock strikes 8pm!
So, here’s to normal! Here’s to being different, but in a functional way! Here’s to embracing myself, my quirks and loving all of me. Here’s to confidence and long may it continue!