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The Cold Never Bothered Me Anyway…

Frozen.

I don’t know how many times I’ve written in this blog or talked to my friends about feeling “frozen”… having a cold heart.. unable to warm… unable to feel…. but yet there is nothing I want more than to thaw out what is frozen…

I’ve never loved and hated a movie as much as I love and hate the movie Frozen. I’ve been putting off writing about it for a couple months now, because I still don’t know how to articulate how incredibly connected I feel to this movie and how much I hate Disney’s happy ending to this story. But I’m sorry Disney… the happy ending that you created was too unreal. It doesn’t matter that their was magically talking creatures in this movie or the power of an individual to create snow… no the most unrealistic aspect was the end.

… I am Elsa…8208481_6221277_b

Never in my life have I been able to identify with a character to the degree that I identify with Elsa. No I do not have the ability to magically make snow and ice appear, but I too was born with a gift that was misunderstood and became feared.

I’m not sure how presumptuous this makes me, but I have always felt that my greatest gift that I was born with was my ability to care and empathize with all that I meet. My parents have told me that they saw this gift within me even from a young age. I had such a loving heart towards everyone I met.

I don’t know how statically accurate this following statement is, but those who have been diagnosed with OCD  are usually those individuals who care most about others. Today, most of my OCD revolves around my fear of doing something that hurts others (whether physical or emotional), because I care too much.

Because of my “power” to care for others, I “developed” what I’ll call a “side effect”… my OCD… fearing too much for myself and for others. I couldn’t go to bed at night without ensuring I did certain rituals to ensure that I and my family didn’t die in the night… my parents knew there was something wrong with me… but like Elsa’s parents they begged me to hide it.

Elsa- “Don’t let them in, don’t let them see. Be the good girl you always have to be. Conceal, don’t feel, put on a show. Make one wrong move and everyone will know. But it’s only for today.”

That could have been my life’s mantra. I had to conceal… I had to put on a show… so that no one but my family would know their was something wrong with me. And like Elsa… I had to hide my hands… I didn’t wear gloves (that would raise more questions in our society), but I couldn’t reveal my bloody dry hands… I couldn’t let people see my rituals… it would take away from everyone’s view that we had a perfect family.

In fact, growing up I was able to conceal it so well… that except during OCD moments (hand washing, freaking out and doing rituals while going up escalators, freaking out in large buildings (such as churches, movie theaters, and malls), freaking out if I didn’t pet the dog in a certain pattern, freaking out when driving, freaking out about failing, freaking out about not being perfect)… I convinced MYSELF there was nothing wrong with me.

The biggest reminders though would be when my middle sister (who is completely Anna in this situation) would want to “build a snowman” and I would shut the door in her face. I couldn’t do ANYTHING that might make the OCD reveal itself… and it would hurt her sooo deeply.

Anna: Elsa?

Do you wanna build a snowman?
Come on lets go and play
I never see you anymore, come out the door It’s like you’ve gone away

We used to be best buddies and now were not I wish you would tell me why
Do you wanna build a snowman?
It doesn’t have to be a snowman

Elsa: Go away Anna
Anna: Okayy bye…

Once we got to college the OCD became worse… but my sister was occasionally able to coax me away from my room and build a snowman… but these were rare occurrences….

I can’t tell you the amount of times I thought about running away just like Elsa… how better my life would be… and in fact in some ways I did run away… I ran away to my isolated places… b/c I knew that if I was alone I couldn’t hurt anyone… just like Elsa… she ran away so she wouldn’t hurt anyone…

The snow glows white on the mountain tonight
Not a footprint to be seen
A kingdom of isolation,
And it looks like I’m the Queen

The wind is howling like this swirling storm inside
Couldn’t keep it in, heaven knows I tried

Don’t let them in, don’t let them see
Be the good girl you always have to be
Conceal, don’t feel, don’t let them know
Well, now they know

Let it go, let it go
Can’t hold it back anymore
Let it go, let it go
Turn away and slam the door

I don’t care
What they’re going to say
Let the storm rage on,
The cold never bothered me anyway

It’s funny how some distance
Makes everything seem small
And the fears that once controlled me
Can’t get to me at all

It’s time to see what I can do
To test the limits and break through
No right, no wrong, no rules for me
I’m free

Let it go, let it go
I am one with the wind and sky
Let it go, let it go
You’ll never see me cry

Here I stand
And here I’ll stay
Let the storm rage on

My power flurries through the air into the ground
My soul is spiraling in frozen fractals all around
And one thought crystallizes like an icy blast
I’m never going back,
The past is in the past

Let it go, let it go
And I’ll rise like the break of dawn
Let it go, let it go
That perfect girl is gone

Here I stand
In the light of day
Let the storm rage on,
The cold never bothered me anyway

I don’t care what they’re going to say
Let the storm rage on
The cold never bothered me anyway

While this song seems so incredibly empowering, it makes my heart break… because this moment of empowerment is all based on the fact that she will be lonely forever.

“The cold never bothered me anyway”= “Being alone never bothered me anyway.”

While she loves her beautiful gift to make beautiful ice and snow, she still hates it… its what keeps her away from others… it is what keeps her separate and different… it is what keeps her alone… I love my gift for caring for others… but I care so much that it sets off my chemical imbalance… so I rather be alone… so I can care for others from afar… so they don’t have to risk anything being near me.

It is like this whole song is her being in awe and amazed at what she can do and using it to convince herself that loneliness won’t be terrible… and that she will be ok… but there isn’t much worse than being completely alone… don’t get me wrong… I need days to be by myself… to recharge… after all I am an introvert… but I know most of my loneliness (especially before I finally started therapy 2.5 years ago) is self inflicted… and I really don’t want to be lonely.

Anna: You don’t have to protect me, I’m not afraid!

Anna:
Please don’t shut me out again,
Please don’t slam the door
You don’t have to keep your distance anymore

‘Cuz for the first time in forever,
I finally understand
For the first time in forever,
We can fix this hand in hand

We can head down this mountain together
You don’t have live in fear
‘Cuz for the first time in forever,
I will be right here

Elsa:Anna

Elsa:
Please go back home, your life awaits
Go enjoy the sun and open up the gates

Anna: Yeah, but –

Elsa: I know

Elsa:
You mean well, but leave me be
Yes, I’m alone, but I’m alone and free
Just stay away and you’ll be safe from me

Anna (Elsa):
Actually we’re not (What do you mean you’re not?)
I get the feeling you don’t know (What do I not know?)
Arendelle’s in deep, deep, deep, deep snow

Elsa: What?!

Anna: You’ve kind of set off an eternal winter.. everywhere

Elsa: Everywhere?

Anna: Well, it’s okay, you can just unfreeze it

Elsa: No, I can’t, I – I don’t know how!

Anna: Sure you can! I know you can!

Anna (Elsa):
‘Cuz for the first time in forever, (I’m such a fool, I can’t be free)
You don’t have to be afraid (No escape from the storm inside of me)
We can work this out together (I can’t control the curse)
We’ll reverse the storm you’ve made (Anna, please! You’ll only make it worse!)

Don’t panic (There’s so much fear)
We’ll make the sun shine bright (You’re not safe here)
We can face this thing together (No!)
We can change this winter weather
And everything we’ll be – (I can’t!)

Even after others found out about what was wrong with me… they felt like they understood and that they could help me… and to a large degree… I am MUCH better because of the support of all those around me… but this gets to my issue with the unrealistic ending of this movie… there is no escape from the storm inside of me… and I have so much fear… yes my once severe OCD is barely present and mild at its worse now… but I can’t control it… and I fear relapse soooo much… and even with others all around me… leaving my isolation “hand in hand”… it doesn’t make the fear go away.

The end of Frozen… Elsa realized that it was “love” that would melt the snow and ice. It was love that set her free. It was love that made her realize that her “curse” was a “gift”… all of a sudden she was able to melt everything and use her power for fun and good.

I find this so incredibly unrealistic.

Elsa would have still feared her power. Yes… she realized how to control it… but what happens when she is angry or hurt? Will she be able to control it then? She would be afraid… she would still have moments when all she wanted was to isolate herself from others… yes love is powerful… but so is fear… and her fear wouldn’t go away. Yes people now understood what she would go through at times… but what would happen if they made her upset and she accidentally hit someone with ice… like she did to Anna? Now that Anna knows what can happen… still doesn’t mean they won’t get in fights… or Elsa won’t have a “trigger” moment… accidents can still happen… it was an “accident” that froze Anna’s heart… how would Elsa ensure that an accident didn’t happen again?

Everything wouldn’t be perfect… it would still be an uphill battle…

Unless I’m missing something?

Is my battle supposed to be over?

Love conquerers all… and I felt the love from family and friends since “I came out” (so to speak) about my mental illness… but even though all they give to me is love… I still fear myself…

I mean on a day to day basis I usually feel pretty good and love life… but I still need to run up my north mountain and be away. My happily ever after still hasn’t been reached… fear is still present…

I will always hate my frozen heart.. even thought it is what i use to protect others from me and to protect myself… yet I will always want it to be completely melted so that I can care for others the way that I was meant to… the way I was gifted to.

But you know what? The cold… the loneliness… it never bothered me anyway…

…. where is my happy ending? how do I make the fear go away to get it?

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Posted by on January 19, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Belonging

Ok… so I know I said that I am going to keep to my positive attitude… but I think in order to fully embody that I need to recognize everything that is holding me back from having that attitude come naturally.

I was recently having a heart-to-heart with a friend I’ll call Jodie, and it kind of hit me during that conversation what one of my underlying issues is…

I hardly ever feel like I belong.

There have been very rare moments in my life when I truly felt like I belonged where I was at…

I think much of this has to do with the fact that I have never lived anywhere longer than 3.25 years… My family moved around a lot when I was growing up… In elementary school alone I went to seven different schools! It started to slow down though once I got to my middle and high school years. But all in all… including undergrad and grad schools, I have been in 14 different schools (not including two summers that I did undergrad courses at my college near home at two different universities).

In that kind of setting it is really hard to feel like you belong somewhere… always having to leave people, meet new people, and then have to leave new people in order to move again gave me very good life skills I think in understanding people… but has left me in a very vulnerable place. Because I didn’t belong. In fact my last high school I went too was so cliquish that they went out of there way to show me that I didn’t belong by ignoring me even though I had lived there before and knew them from when we were younger.

Then in church settings… cliques are very pervasive among the younger crowd and it was hard to ever find an “in” to having friends… yes I would make a few friends… but always those who were already parts of other cliques that I couldn’t get into, so the time I could really spend with them was limited… and I could never get those few friends together because they were part of different cliques…

And I never belonged at home… My parents… I don’t think they ever MEANT it… often forgot about me… which is odd b/c I am the youngest… but I wasn’t the trouble maker, the first born with all the drama, nor the genius… I was just Brooke… the one never good enough (which my parents more than often pointed out to me) and always under the shadows of her siblings.

I’ve wrote here in this blog about my very best friends who i call on here: Sarah, Riley, Twin, and Tajel… I love them all to death and they love me… but only two of them have ever met. I’ve written about how lucky I am to have them… because I totally am… but I don’t live anywhere near them… I’m lucky if I get to see them once a year.

So its like I do belong somewhere with them… but on an emotional plane not a physical plane…

I think that is one of the reasons why my drama from last semester affected me so much… because I met someone who made me feel like I physically belonged somewhere… and then to have that taken from me… was kind of devastating… it wasn’t his fault… he couldn’t have known… I mean I didn’t know! But I’m realizing now that that was what made it feel as bad as it did…

I also have this problem with opening up to people… I’m either 100% open to someone or 100% closed to someone… I need to learn how to control it… but when I decide that someone is worth opening up too I give them every bit of me… I put 1000% in the relationship… which well is a bit much for ANYONE to handle… I know I shouldn’t… I should ease into a deep relationship (even just in terms of friendship)… but I have a hard time with that… i’m not sure how to fix this… but it is def something I need to work on… but I’ve been this way since… for as long as I remember… that was why Riley and I had such issues when we first met… I had decided in the 7th grade “hey I trust you! here is me! I’ve decided your special so you must deal with me!”… and well I’m a bit much… I can barely handle myself… which is what made Riley and I enemies for the majority of the first year we knew each other… and it doesn’t help b/c I give so much of me to someone that I then cling onto them… I don’t mean too… but I tend to metaphorically suffocate people… Honestly its kinda like I’m Darla from Finding Nemo… thats kinda depressing…wanting so badly for the fish to play with her, love her, and she ends up killing the fish… I don’t mean too… its not out of ill intent at all! I just want to be loved and belonged so badly…

but once people realize that I am the crazy piece of work I am, they love me… and i’m not saying that just to say that… I really do honestly mean it… when people finally realize my uniqueness, for a lack of a better term lol, I somehow always end up as a “pet”… really… one of the very few times I did feel like I belonged somewhere was the first year of where I got my MA degree.. and I heard people often describe me as the ‘pet’ of the group… everyone loves me, watches out for me, loves to play around with me… but at the end of the day… on a Friday night do you want to hang out with your pet or do you want to hit the town with friends? Which often made me feel lonely… even when I felt like I belonged..

And then when my OCD got bad… I had the whole “I don’t belong here on this planet” thing going on…

But really I’ve been thinking… what is the core fear that my OCD feeds on: That I will accidentally do something to have a negative impact on someone’s life. But why do I think that? …

I think its because deep down I truly don’t believe I belong (which I know is a total lie!), because I’ve hardly ever belonged anywhere… why do I fear somehow negatively impacting someone’s life? Because I don’t belong here in the first place and I am somehow where I am by accident… so I need to keep my head low and avoid eye contact before someone realizes that I don’t belong and kicks me out… I somehow got lost in the shuffle and am extremely thankful to be in the place where I am and I don’t want to do anything to make my blessing of being where I am have a negative impact…if people are going to notice me I want it to be only for good things so that when they realize that I don’t belong they won’t mind as much that I am somehow here.

I dunno… does that make sense? I’m not sure…

But that is really something I need to work on…. feeling like I belong… because I do belong… especially to my friends… even if I am not there physically. And I need not latch on to someone giving them 1000% of me at once b/c then I just end up metaphorically making them claustrophobic until a candle is finally lit (if they actually stick around that long) and they realize I am a beautiful person… or at least I hope I am.

I physically felt like a belonged somewhere with a specific individual last semester… and I gave him too much of me way to quickly… scared him off… I miss that feeling of belonging and not be lonely… but I need to find a way to not rely on someone else to feel that way… I need to find belonging within myself and with God.

After all… “Not all those who Wander are lost.”

 
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Posted by on January 14, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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