I am writing this post while I’m making my way to my first therapy session since 2017. A lot has happened between then and now. Quite frankly, the thought of unpacking so many years of transformation has been freaking me out. The thing is, when you’ve branded yourself as a strong woman or man, you run away from the parts of you that force you to be vulnerable. But, you can’t run forever. Honestly, I am scared of how this session will leave me feeling.
Healthy Mental Health Matters
In most cases, things need to break before they can be fixed. When you walk around trying to keep your head above you while your feet are paddling beneath you, it’s hard to stop. You know that you will unravel. This is something that has thrown me off balance for the whole year. Last night, it left me unable to write or honour my deadlines. When this happened, my anxiety shot through the roof. Do you know how it feels to have your mind paralyze you? It feels like your mind is doing everything in its power to make you fail.
When you think about it, therapy is meant to be something that makes you feel safe. It’s supposed to be a moment in your life where you look forward to being finally seen.
But how can it be, when you’ve failed to see yourself? When you know that you’ll have to accept the things that you’ve constantly done to jeopardize yourself. There are so many things that you need to unpack in that room. An hour seems unrealistic when you think of what it means to open up about all your desires, fears, and traumas. I am here writing this post with a lump in my throat that’s the size of a golf ball. The last time that I went to therapy, I was trying to heal from being a victim of sexual violence. Now, I am going to therapy because the love that was meant to be a safe space broke me. It left me having to kill parts of myself without having a choice. I am going there today because if I don’t, my daughter will suffer the consequences of my inaction.
Fear is a Crippling Emotion
The truth is that there are journeys that you have to take for those that you love more than yourself. The last thing that I want to do is to mother my child from my dysfunctional characteristics. When you pour love into someone or something that you treasure the most, it shouldn’t only be intentional, but it should be healthy. Most importantly, the love that you give should add value to you. In nearly three years of being a mother (I count this from when I confirmed my pregnancy), I have taken my role and poured into it from a place of fear more than anything else. Love is natural, but fear has been an overbearing attribute.
In hindsight, this is how I ended up being a stay-at-home mom even though I have a Law degree. I feared what would happen to my daughter if I left her at home being taken care of by someone else while I carried on with my plans to be an attorney. I feared having a broken bond that resembled the one that my mother and I shared. Truthfully, it’s easy to conceal your fears and present them as love. This is how toxic relationships are bred. We let fear rule the most important parts of who we are. Instead of admitting this or effectively communicating how this makes us feel, we’d rather preoccupy ourselves with other things.
Therapy is meant to guide you to navigate the most paralyzing parts of you. The things that have kept you stagnant and forced you to give up on who you’re meant to be. I don’t know what today holds for me. Yet, as I am writing this, I know that by the end of the day, I will not be the same person that I am right now. I am intentional about this journey and it’s important to ensure that I put in the required effort. If not for myself, then for my daughter and all the people that I love.