Today I was in deep thought about the evolution of oneself, and who we are as people. Many people start out one way and become a completely different person years later. Some change slowly while others might even plateau for decades after a certain age. When I was a kid, I was happy, free spirited and had fairly good self-esteem apparently. As I started shifting to adolescence, I was incredibly quiet and shy. I was torn between wanting to be alone, but also wanting to be part of the crowd. I had a tough time speaking up and would usually let a lot of things slide. I was insecure, awkward, and introverted. It took many years for me to find my voice. I didn’t even start to come out of my shell until college, the last year I lived on campus. I credit that to university organizations. It definitely helps with building social skills. I still wasn’t as social as I would like to be, but I came a long way compared to how I was as an adolescent. I spoke up for myself a lot and I didn’t let people walk over me. I also learned how to cut people off when I know that they were not good for me. I have learned so much from trial and error. After a while you start to see familiar signs and behavioral patterns, and that’s when you know you have to walk away. People will only do what you allow. You cannot wait for people to change, while you’re hurting inside. It is okay to walk away from toxic people and frenemies.
Twenty-five was the year of clarity and growth for me. Most people say when you turn twenty-five that’s when everything starts to click, and for the most part they were right. Things were finally coming together. I felt like I was starting to like who I was and what I was becoming inside and out. After that life just happened, and after I finished graduate school and received my masters it felt like my 180 was turning into a 360. I was sinking back to old habits. I went back into my shell, my anxiety hit a whole new level, and my insecurities popped back up. I still have my voice, and I still won’t let anyone walk over me, but besides that somehow, I ended up worse than I was before. I couldn’t understand how this all happened, and suddenly I just hit a plateau. While everyone was changing around me, I remained the same.
I know changes can happen out of habit or having a strong will to change. It can also happen because of life experiences, adventures, and new opportunities. These were the changes that I knew about. I never knew how much you could change from grief, although after all the movies I’ve watched, it shouldn’t be surprising. Not even just movies, but also from other people’s real-life experience with grief. You know when you see a teen or young adult start to act reckless. You wonder why are they doing this? How is that helping? Now, it’s like I get it. Sometimes grief can knock you to the ground and make you so numb that you are willing to do whatever just so you can feel something or just not deal with the recurring thoughts. I’ve experienced so much loss throughout my life I am no stranger to the effects that it has, but I never felt like the core of me was changing until this loss. Even when I fell into a depression I still felt like the same person on inside, but not this time. This time is different.
So here I am, shifting into another version of me…. Elle 5.0. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t afraid of her or who she would ultimately become. It’s like the parts of me that I actually liked are changing and I’m trying to hold on to it, and not lose myself, but maybe I need to stop holding on to my old self. I love the parts of me that has a good heart, and cares about everything. I love that I am so empathetic and kind. So, to lose that core part is scary. Now It’s like I’m becoming someone else. I care less. The hollow numb feeling that I currently have has decreased my ability to care. I have less tolerance for BS. I’m not as nice. I have a newfound love for adrenaline and self-gratification. Things that bothered me before do not bother me now, because I don’t overly care anymore. I’m also becoming a little bit more selfish, and I don’t know if that’s a good thing or a bad thing. So, what does this mean for the next chapter of my life? Will this updated version of myself be what I need, or will it swallow me whole? I’m not sure. Elle 4.0 was at a plateau and her anxiety and worries kept her in a chokehold. Maybe the person I am becoming will make me a bit more fearless and not so afraid to take chances. I guess time will tell. As much as I’m trying to not lose myself completely, something tells me that it’s likely that she’s already gone.
Thanks for taking your time out of your day to read this post. Hopefully, you will continue to follow up on my everchanging journey.