Behind the Catchy Caption
Just like being healthy, being brave looks different for everyone. For some, closing a business deal is being brave, but for others it might just be getting out of bed. For me, it’s being who I am every day, regardless of what that looks like to others.
When I was in 11th grade I was in a treatment program for an eating disorder. Along the way I blogged about everything. I shared my struggle with what felt like the world. I lived in a small town so it really did feel like everyone was reading what I wrote. While I was going through this it was very therapeutic for me. I’m not sure if it was sharing my story and possibly helping or inspiring others or if it was a way for me to come to terms with what was happening. I loved it until one day I couldn’t write anymore. I would sit in front of my computer to type and go numb. I started to get this feeling when I would do anything that involved sharing myself socially from posting Instagram photos, or sharing something on Facebook. The thought of everyone knowing everything about me and that they had opinions about it made me shut down. To be honest, it still makes me shut down sometimes. I have become so caught up in what everyone else thinks of me, I stopped living my life.
My brave is becoming a Brave Ambassador.
When I saw the first post for becoming an ambassador, I considered it a little and just let it go. My best friend even asked me if I was going to do it because normally I totally would have done it. I decided not to, until it came up one more time. I was in tears trying to decide what to do. I could write and share my words or I could not and feel a little safer behind this little wall I built.
Coming back after treatment was a very hard transition for me. I felt as if I was a completely different person yet no one else knew that. The person that I was before felt like the only person people could see. I was super ashamed of myself and basically fell off the grid. I took almost all PSEO classes and I avoided all social events. I was so scared of people thinking and saying things about me that I literally ran away from the people who used to know me. The fear of being judged controlled my life and I let it for the longest time.
I had talked to a previous Brave Ambassador, Autumn, and she told me that she got through the fear of being judged by saying if people truly love me, they will not judge me but support me no matter what. I had a hard time swallowing that. It is totally true but not something I was ready to accept. It’s not even that I wanted everyone to love me but that I needed approval and validation in everything I did when in reality the only validation I needed was from myself.
I am a very different person now than I was two years ago. I’ve grown up a bit and am learning how to be true to myself. I guess I felt that when I post and share things that I have to exaggerate to make myself feel enough for everyone else. I have recently been feeling that way in regards to college. I feel as if I am doing something wrong because I am not doing it the way everyone else expects me to. I’m learning to let go of that because I’m not in the wrong and I know what is best for me.
So I am going to write and share my heart out because I love to and because that is being true to me. I’m learning to let go of other people’s hold on me and live for myself because living my best life shouldn’t be second place to what my Instagram followers think. Besides, no one knows my heart by creeping through my Facebook profile, they only know what my life looks like but not a thing that actually happens in it. I am done worrying about how it looks to other people but rather focusing on how it feels to me.
I challenge you to be brave and be your truest self. Post that selfie, or don’t. Really, do what you WANT to do and do it for yourself. Other people aren’t the ones living your life so don’t take their opinion of you too seriously. You don’t want to look back and regret the things you didn’t do all because you were scared of what people would think of you when they don’t know anything about you.