Diary Page Sixty-Two

October 22, 2005 -- I've been blessed in an unusual way...

My first entry after moving out. Moving out was one of my goals and I have accomplished it...pretty much. So far, it is everything I'd hoped it would be. I have not become a hermit or isolated, nor have I been doing bad things (yet!). So my mother needn't have worried on that account. I wish I hadn't held back for so long out of fear and a misguided sense of responsibility for my parents. So far, they're doing okay without me. I don't think they're eating many homecooked meals and I don't know if all of the bills are being paid, but they're all doing a little better spiritually and taking strides in the right direction. That's what is most important.

As for me, I am SOOOOO HAPPY. I'm still feeling rather alone but I'm pretty happy nonetheless. I love the freedom of solitude. I like being responsible for myself. I've been eating healthy and I have been more active. I haven't been sitting around watching TV or sleeping all the time. I've been practicing good hygiene and trying to keep the apartment in good shape. I go out nearly every day. There are many places to go, but mostly I go to different libraries. That's where I am right now.

The best part about moving out has been all of the personal growth. In just a month, I have grown so much. A lot of it started before I moved out. Not having to deal with depression has opened many doors for me. But the relaxation of being on my own has contributed greatly to my emotional and mental health. Most of the books I get from the library are aimed at personal growth. I'm a sucker for self-help books. Some are better than others, but mostly they help to spur my natural inclination towards self-understanding and improvement. My self-esteem is really on the way up. I have always had a lot of rules about who and what I had to be, and now I'm throwing a lot of those rules out. I'm not deficient in any way, I'm a beautiful servant of Jehovah and He doesn't see me as deficient. If I had a friend in pain, I wouldn't tell her the things I've told myself. I'd be much more kind and sympathetic. So when things aren't going perfectly for me, I'm going to have to be my friend. I already had it in me, I just had to find it.

My motto used to be, "I'm deficient. I don't measure up. I was born wrong. I'm not good enough." Now I am starting to believe that "I am beautifully human" (tm Jill Scott). For me, that means that I am beautiful inside. No, not all the time, but the beauty is there because I am a human being made in Jehovah's image. There is grace and beauty in all of us, and I've always had a knack for seeing it in other people, even when most have rejected them. So I'm going to see it in myself! My new motto also means that I am human. Right now, being a human being means I'm not perfect. So why am I a perfectionist? It's brought me nothing but pain. But it also means I DO belong, I DO fit in with the human race.

Oh how long I have felt like I did not belong here! Sometimes I'd feel there was something critically wrong with everyone else, but usually I felt like there was something wrong with ME. I had a friend who told me that he felt like he was a man from a thousand years in the future, and accidentally finds himself HERE. I too have felt like I was meant for a different place and time, maybe some planet that doesn't even exist. I'm just so weird and felt so rejected and out of place. I've felt this way since I was a little girl. But no more. I have much to offer, especially since I have knowledge of the truth. Yes, in many ways I am not part of this world, not just because the world is under Satan's control, but because I'm unique. I say I am one of us and one of them.

My body image has also improved. I'm not disgusting nor do I have "only the bad genes". I saw some pictures of myself as a child and I was pretty. I still think I'm pretty sometimes, so I'm just going to carry myself like I'm pretty all the time. I still have to tell myself to "Stand up taller! Walk with confidence!", but it is fun to do it. I've started wearing makeup, jewelry and I now own over 20 pairs of shoes. Maybe I'm out of control, HA. But my mother is happy about it. I had to stress to her that this is up to ME, and if I don't want to wear makeup or make my hair fancy, I don't have to do it. As long as I don't feel like I HAVE to do these things just to fit in (and then I just resent it), I'll do them for me, to feel special. I AM special in a lot of ways. I'm not being arrogant to say this to myself, because it is true, and I have a lot of angst to make up for.

I've also been striving to conquer my anxiety. I might need professional help with this, but I've done some things. I did a really big thing last weekend. My girl Chrissy is getting married and I was at her bridal shower. I didn't know what gift to give her, so I wrote a song for her. And I performed that song, in front of all of those people! Brings a smile just thinking about it. I thought I would pass out at the time but I made it! I performed one of my songs and I never thought I'd do that, only dreamed about it. And they liked it! One sister said I should sell it, many had tears in their eyes. And I was shocked when people kept saying I have a beautiful singing voice. People in the library keep looking at me because I'm smiling so much. My mom and my aunt would ask me why I'm smiling. Well why not? You don't need a reason to smile!
November 10, 2005 -- ?if ?I had but time...
Sadly I have discovered that I cannot update my website using computers at the library. But that's just a minor setback. I have been just fine even though I watch MUCH less television and I only access the internet about once a week. I've been reading more, taking more walks, experimenting with cooking and taking lots of baths. I LOVE baths, always have, but at home the tub didn't work and we could only take showers. Well the bathtub in the apartment works fine and I have definitely been using it. It had been many years since I'd read a book in the bathtub, and that used to be one of my favorite actitivities. Now I'm doing it again, and I just love it. I like all of these simple pleasures, I really, really do.

I'm not spending much time with other people though, and I am slightly concerned about that. Thankfully, a new friend I met in September, a sister from Cleveland, is coming to visit and then we're going up to Connecticut where I will meet even more new people. I am VERY excited about this. She's very sweet, kind and spiritual, a pioneer who serves in the deaf congregation. She works as a freelance interpreter. Recently I have become very interested in interpreting as a profession. I've also known for quite some time that when I do eventually become a pioneer, I want to serve in a foreign language congregation at some point. For a few years I've been considering Chinese and hey, why not?
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