During my last counselling session, I was asked: “What would your child self think of you?”
I felt a lump in my throat as I responded, “She’d be disappointed in me.”
But by the end of the session, I realised something. My expectations for myself have always been set too high, so of course I never met them.
My 8 year old self dreamt of being a pop star by twenty-one years old… Which is easier said and done.
Why didn’t this happen you may ask? Did I not put in the work? Did I not have the talent?
My answer to that is very simple... HIGH SCHOOL.
A knocked self-esteem, being bullied, lack of confidence, which resulted in me wanting to be invisible.
Then after that… I thought it was unrealistic to be a singer at all. So I was thought, “I’ll be an author instead.” BANG! BOOM! SLAM!
I developed Narcolepsy from fourteen years old and onwards. I would come home from school everyday and sleep until tea time. I felt as if I just about scraped through my GCSEs and college. When I was finally diagnosed at 17 years old, I was grieving for the person I once was.
After that? I went on to study creative writing at university, maybe I’d find the confidence to pursue my dreams then… Right?
When I wasn’t doing my coursework and in lectures, I was distracted with my ex, who caused my heart to go on a roller coaster of emotions, resulting in me losing respect for myself at that time.
The small shed of the ‘confidence’ I did have would push me to perform at open mic nights, but any praise I received, I only assumed that person was being polite.
So graduation came and went, ended up in a retail job for six months which resulted in daily anxiety. Eventually, I quit my job and began to slowly realise my friends from uni weren’t my friends at all.
When I was younger, I visualised I’d have my act together by time I was in my twenties. I’d look over at my peers and think ‘they make it look so easy.’
I felt like I disappointed not only myself, but my family too. At that point, I didn’t even think I was anyone worth loving, nevermind worthy of achieving what they wanted in life. Unaware I was self sabotaging myself with my overthinking and comparisons.
Fast-forward to present day, I’m getting over my insecurities from my past relationship and that alone feels like a revelation in itself.
I’m only beginning to feel at peace with still not knowing what I’m doing with my life. Especially with the current events going on, it puts everything into perspective.
As long as I’m being creative when I find the energy, without the worry of judgement or opinions, I am more likely to create something more authentic, that I can be proud of. I have to lower my expectations and make them a little more realistic.. I guess my child self will have to be a bit more patient.