I'm really scared to put this post out there. And I'm not entirely certain that it will make it past being just a draft. But I knew a few weeks ago that I would, at the least, write about it and consider actually posting it. So I'm writing, because I'm not the only one.
A few Fridays ago, I woke up and felt low. Lower than I've felt in a long, long time. I felt terrible, not physically, aside from an aching heart. I cried and cried some more, and then took a few breathes and then cried more. I wanted to lay in bed for all eternity, or at least until I died. I wanted to not exist (which is a feeling I am quite familiar with); but please note that I did not want to kill myself, I wasn't feeling suicidal. I felt deeply unloved, unliked, and unwanted. Out of (probably not) nowhere I was feeling this way. I felt alone; I felt trapped; I felt hopeless; and most of all I felt unloved.
After wrestling with the notion of literally staying in bed all day, I finally convinced myself to get up and get something in my unhungry stomach. I then forced myself to message a dear old friend of mine, despite not wanting to see anyone ever again, ever. This woman is old enough to be my mother and has known me for 10 years, and she is a beautiful soul whom I value quite deeply. We made arrangements to meet at Amelie's that afternoon, so now I had something to literally force me to see people.
I then forced myself to text a few best friends. I literally copied and pasted the same message (because it took a lot of guts and sobbing to write it the first time): "Hey best friend, I need some advice: I want to change. Lately I've been more intensely feeling unloved. I'm not the kind of person who gets invited to just hang out in a group or with just one person. To me it feels like people don't want to be around me. Today, I just don't want to exist. I just wish I didn't exist. I know that people will always disappoint and that I shouldn't depend on people to define who I am, but I still want to feel loved and liked. I hear people say how great they think I am, but yet I don't get invited to just spend time with them. What can I do/should I do to change this? I feel like I don't belong anywhere. I feel so alone. Is there something I can say/do/be to change people's feelings towards me?" That was the best I could do in terms of expressing how I felt. I felt so weak, but I don't like feeling weak, so I figured trying to empower myself to change was the next best thing. The responses I got from my friends who I sent this message to were beautiful and medicinal and perfect.
They helped me know that I am not alone.
My friends' responses to my message all said they often feel this way. I was wallowing in how lonely I felt, convinced that I was the only one, and they came and pointed out that they feel the same way I feel. So we're not alone. You're not alone.
They reminded me how deeply loved I am (at least by them), and how I was right in saying that I shouldn't let people define me or give me my worth, and how I sometimes have to just put myself out there and be the invite-or, not just wait to be invited. One told me that I can be a bit of a pessimist (which I've seen myself transform from an optimist to a pessimist over the past few years, and I don't like that about myself) and encouraged me to look on the more positive side of things. One friend called me and, almost frantically, spilled out how much they love me and reminded me over and over how much I'm loved by them while I was trying to hang up on them because I didn't want to cry in a public place.
Bottom line: I am loved and I am not alone.
For me, a lot of times being an extrovert is tough; my own insecurities and being too self-aware at times makes me feel like I'm an unpleasantry to be around, which only increases the awkwardness. Fun times, right? Vicious cycle. I love being around people, and need people, but I feel like people don't want to be around me. My hyperactive imagination concocts different scenarios/reasons as to why people don't invite me (into their lives, homes, get togethers, etc), and then I go mad with this self-induced feeling of being unwanted. It sucks. Like, a lot. But I can think of at least three people who often feel unwanted and probably take it personally when they're not invited to things they would enjoy with people they would enjoy (and one of those people is engaged, so it's not just a single person feeling, ha!). You know what? Knowing those three people often feel the same way I do/did, is enough for me. I'm not glad that we all feel this way, but I'm glad to know that I not alone in feeling this way. It's the little things that are the big things, and not feeling alone is a big thing.
The day after, I felt exceedingly loved and wanted. I no longer felt alone and I felt optimistic about life. I am loved.