No one likes me

No one likes me, they say they do but are they really my friends? This is what my mind has been saying daily to me for most of my life, it says that I’m no good, I’m worthy of friendship, eventually, people get sick of me and abandon me. It feels so real despite having friends who support my mental health advocacy, correspond with me, say they care, my mind can never fully trust them an that hurts. My friends don’t hurt me but my anxiety does, it bullies me into thinking that everyone is against me.

I truly think the one who dislikes me the most is myself, in many ways I hate myself, I don’t know why but I just don’t like the person in the mirror and I figure no one else does either. I call it social paranoia and the paranoia HAS cost me friendships many times, no one wants to around someone who needs constant reassurance, puts themselves down or questions who is friends are, I wouldn’t want to know that person either.

I don’t know if I was always like this but it certainly got worse after I was bullied, I couldn’t trust people and I  became hyper-vigilant in order to protect myself, it’s a constant fear of saying the wrong thing or coming across a certain way and then  I’ll be rejected and rejection stings.

I really don’t have a lot of skills at my disposal to combat my anxiety other than my journal, meds, and prayer, sometimes I may relay on friends but again, oftentimes I feel misunderstood so I keep these social paranoid feelings to myself, I shy away from speaking about it out loud for fear it will further drive people away.

It’s very lonely to have to deal with this anxiety every day. it hurts. I have anxiety attacks over social gaffes I may or may have not made and I’m sure others have forgotten them but my anxiety won’t let me forget it. All I know is that I really struggle with this and writing is my therapy, it’s the only way to process this barrage of anxiety. When is it going to go away, when can I finally relax? I even worry about how this entry is going to be perceived ( if anyone even bothers to read it.)  God, anxiety is the worst but at least I’m not alone, I’m never alone.

 

No one likes me

No one likes me, they say they do but are they really my friends? This is what my mind has been saying daily to me for most of my life, it says that I’m no good, I’m worthy of friendship, eventually, people get sick of me and abandon me. It feels so real despite having friends who support my mental health advocacy, correspond with me, say they care, my mind can never fully trust them an that hurts. My friends don’t hurt me but my anxiety does, it bullies me into thinking that everyone is against me.

I truly think the one who dislikes me the most is myself, in many ways I hate myself, I don’t know why but I just don’t like the person in the mirror and I figure no one else does either. I call it social paranoia and the paranoia HAS cost me friendships many times, no one wants to around someone who needs constant reassurance, puts themselves down or questions who is friends are, I wouldn’t want to know that person either.

I don’t know if I was always like this but it certainly got worse after I was bullied, I couldn’t trust people and I  became hyper-vigilant in order to protect myself, it’s a constant fear of saying the wrong thing or coming across a certain way and then  I’ll be rejected and rejection stings.

I really don’t have a lot of skills at my disposal to combat my anxiety other than my journal, meds, and prayer, sometimes I may relay on friends but again, oftentimes I feel misunderstood so I keep these social paranoid feelings to myself, I shy away from speaking about it out loud for fear it will further drive people away.

It’s very lonely to have to deal with this anxiety every day. it hurts. I have anxiety attacks over social gaffes I may or may have not made and I’m sure others have forgotten them but my anxiety won’t let me forget it. All I know is that I really struggle with this and writing is my therapy, it’s the only way to process this barrage of anxiety. When is it going to go away, when can I finally relax? I even worry about how this entry is going to be perceived ( if anyone even bothers to read it.)  God, anxiety is the worst but at least I’m not alone, I’m never alone.

New Year goals 2019

New Year Goals

Well, a new year is upon us and it has been quite a incredible year for me; I made a lot of progress and really grew as a person. I pray that 2019 will also be a good year for me; I plan on making the year to come a very successful one; I’d like to improve myself on a mental/emotion, spiritual, social and financial/career level; all aspects of my life. I am ending the year on a somewhat sour note; being unemployed but I have perseverance and I am very driven. I am many goals for this year and I plan to achieve a lot in the coming year.

One of my goals is education; I am determined to finally get my associates degree in developmental disabilities; I want a job in the field; maybe as a job coach, a peer mentor or a motivational speaker in the future. I can sense how my writing and story has inspired others and the idea of using it to help people is something I very much like to do. I will take any opportunity to use my experience to inspire others to do their very best and not to give up; this may be one of my callings in life. I want more career aspects because like anyone else; I want to make enough money so I can be independent; I don’t live with my family by choice; I’m with them because my health issues and disabilities limits the kinds of jobs I can take; I want to push myself to do better; I think we all deserve that.

And speaking of my career; I want to continue to volunteer with the disabled ministry; I plan on spending more time with them this year; getting to know them further; and learning the skills I need to enter the human service field. It also helps me grow closer in my faith and become a more spiritual person. Through this group, I know God is working in my life. I plan on volunteering in other areas such as teaching English as a second language and other volunteer opportunities throughout the area. Now that I have all this free time; I plan to use it wisely and maybe get involved in church more as well. I think God has big plans for me in 2019 and I just have to follow his lead.

I think this will be a big year for me socially as well. I plan to continue reconnecting with friends and hopefully making new friends as well; I am trying to learning to face my fears and learn to meet new people and not avoid social situations; just to put myself out there. Something as simple as asking for a someone’s number who I’m interested in is a big step for me. Maybe dating is on the horizon for me; that is an exciting new chapter for me. That’s something that creates a lot of anxiety but I know God will guide me through whatever happens. I plan on maybe taking a trip back home to see old friends; there are so many people I want to see; just the idea of traveling is new to me but I am ready for it. I am so thankful for all the friends I have connected but am sad most of them live far away; so I have to make the effort to see them. This will be the year where I expand my social life.

I will continue to write; exploring new ideas and forms of writing; I am going to keep my blog and hopefully gain more followers and connect with more writers; I am so excited about that. With my free time; I hope to find a writers group in the area and meet fellow writers face to face; maybe get the chance to share my poetry to a live audience; I would love that. Yes writing is my saving grace and I have no idea where I’d be without it.

I figure if 2018 was such a big year; then 2019 will be even better; I just have to have faith; I need to stay positive and move forward in my life. I want to inspire and encourage others and do my part to make the world a better place. I want to be a more compassionate and forgiving person along the way; I remain in prayer and I hope for the best in the upcoming year. And I wish all of my family, friends and followers a very happy new years. May 2019 be a successful year for you; may you be blessed with all the happiness in the world

Dave

 

 

Image may contain: David Aguilera, smiling, indoor

What gets me through rough days

Thanksgiving is coming up and this is the season for gratitude; although I  know when I am in a negative space; it’s easy to be anything but grateful.  I wrote earlier about how I was struggling at work; how I was anxious and felt overwhelmed and I also want to add that I feel antagonized at times; people will try to engage me when it’s clearly obvious that I don’t want to talk to them; it only makes me more anxious and irritable.  Anyways today was another frustrating day; the Christmas music is really grating.   I tried really hard today to focus on the good things in my life that could make me smile and the first thing I thought about was the overwhelming positive responses I get on my blog; beautiful comments that make me feel like my writing makes a difference in people’s lives or that someone can relate to what I’m saying; that I’m not  alone because when I am at work; feeling like I have no value and people are looking at me and treating me as if I am terrible person; I feel completely alone and helpless; it’s just a negative place to be. So thinking about how all my wonderful followers helps me to see that I do matter; I do have talent; I am worth something and I don’t deserve ( no one does) to be treated this way. So I say it a lot but I’ll say it again; I am so so extremely blessed to have you in my online life; we are a community and I really appreciate how supportive people are; it’s heartwarming ( Here I am again; overemotional). If only you know what your responses meant to me on days like this.

I also thinking about my friends and family who I love so much. I get so many positive responses from them as well; they are rooting and praying for me and I also don’t think they realize how much they mean to me; I am blessed to have such caring friends because not everyone has that.  I have friends I can message when I am struggling and they accept me for who I am. I have pretty much told them everything that is going on with me ( the anxiety and being on the spectrum) and they are extremely supportive; I really cherish those friendships. It hurts that they live so far away; otherwise I’d see them in person.  So when I feel mistreated at work; I think of my friends and family and I feel grateful for them.  I know that I am a kind person and I’m gentle ( in the right environment) and a lot of people see that as a weakness and therefore treat you poorly but it’s not reflection on me; it’s reflection on them.

The last thing I think about that makes me feel better is my volunteer work with the disabled ministry; it has been such an incredible experience; I really love working with these young adults and how unbelievably kind they are; and the least judgemental people I have come across; they will be your friends right away.  I love my fellow volunteers, the lady who is the leader; I have really grown to love her; she is very sweet and thinks highly of me; which is not at all how I feel at work. Apparently she has told other people about how much she appreciates me helping and how much I care;  it’s such a welcome relief from being treated like a pariah who can’t do anything right.  It’s just a positive environment since it’s in a church; it isn’t noisy; no one is rushing you; everyone is respectful; no loud abrasive music and I enjoy being there; among the young adults who are a joy to work with.  I also have gotten to know some of the parents of the young adults and various church members; such as a 91 year old woman who adores me ( she gives me a hug every time she sees me) and she brightens my whole week; like having a grandma again.

I think about all those things and realize God is working in my life; he is taking care of me and that this rough patch is temporary.  So yes I am stuck in the noisy, dirty place; on my feet; full of people I don’t like but I can change my mindset; I don’t have to let them control me. They may be able to take away my time and my dignity and  some of my sanity ( lol)  but they can’t take this blog or my writing; they can’t destroy my wonderful friendships; they can’t control my thoughts or feelings;they can’t take away my relationship with God; it gives me the power back; I don’t have to let them have so much control over me.  God has blessed me beyond belief and I will continue to pray and get up and do what I need to do everyday; God will give me the strength to get through this; I believe that with all of my heart.

edit- As I was writing this I got a phone call from Costco and I have a job interview tomorrow. I am so excited and this is another reason why God is working in my life. When I am at my lowest point; he comes through; he listens and I might just get that Christmas miracle; a new job and maybe a positive new chapter in my life. God is good.

 

Image may contain: David Aguilera, smiling, indoor

The elephant that didn’t forget

There once was elephant by the name of Simon. Simon lived among his elephant family; a strong mother who lead the herd through the toughest of days. He had many brothers and sisters who he saw every day. But Simon was different he had spots all over him; a trunk so long; it dragged when he walked and a leg shorter than the other. And so because he was different; his family could never accept him. They mocked him as he stomped across the ground with his trunk dragging and a sunken look of sadness in his eyes overtook him. They wouldn’t let him play with them and so head to the ground ;Simon went off to spend his days alone; remembering every unkind action of his family; if elephants could have cried he would have because you see elephants never forget. One day Simon’s mother decided he was an embarrassment to the family; a spotted, short legged elephant with a trunk far long and a grumpy look on his face was of no use to the family. She said “Enough of that you’re out on your own, Simon i can longer help you”. As Simon walked away from his family for the last time; his sister Rose ran up behind him; saying “Simon if you go i’ll follow you. We are family and I love you. Its not fair that you have to leave; I know I was unkind; forgive me and let come with you”. Simon paused for a moment and said “Sister, your kindness overwhelms me ;of course you can join me. He then said “And because Im an elephant and I never forget; I will always remember this moment for the rest of my days. Thank you, sister

Childhood photographs: Changes

I found all these photo albums of pictures my dad had taken from the time I was born up to my teenage years; I hadn’t seen these photos in years and it really took me back.   I was able to see a happy childhood photos with my grandparents, my brother ( both have long since passed) and various friends ( including the one I mentioned in my previous post) throughout my life; it brings up so many memories; some good and some very painful. It was not easy growing up and I struggled so much with dealing with my family; relating to my peers; mental health; it was just a struggle. I wanted to be accepted so bad and I just didn’t have the social skills to do that; I was withdrawn and depressed which in turn made me extremely lonely; I needed constant validation ( which is still an issue today). I think of the death of my brother and how when I see the photos before he died; I see a happier kid; I’m smiling, acting a fool; playing it up for the camera.  In the photos after he died; I have a sullen look on my face; a face of someone’s who soul has been destroyed by this tragic death; I was devastated and smiling and being a normal kid was impossible from that point on; that really hurts to see.  It always hurts to see a kid that never looked his best; I had big curly hair, and a zoned out look on my face, I just looked awkward, you know. And I realize all teenagers look awkward but my awkwardness seemed more pronounced; which is all the more reason why I was blessed to have friends who accepted me regardless of how withdrawn I was and they made efforts to reach out me; even at times I pushed them away; they never gave up on me.  I wish I could go back in time and hug that kid and tell him I love him; tell him to accept the kindness of his friends and not to give up in himself; because people loved him and really were his friends; it’s wasn’t self-pity but real friendship. So yeah those picture stir up a lot of emotions that I have been holding in for a long time.

But I want to put a positive spin and say that I look at those photos and see myself now and I am so proud of the man I have become today.  I am much more approachable person today; less withdrawn; open about my feelings; more social. Hell I couldn’t even look people in the eye back then.  I handle situations that would have seemed impossible back then; I am in college, I have a job, I communicate with my friends, have a blog that I think is pretty successful so far; I can talk to women ( at the time it was difficult; and I take better care of my mental health (which takes a lot of work). I don’t like to sound egotistical but I like photos of myself now; I look a lot better; more attractive; more with it; smiling and confident. I never liked pictures of myself but I know I do.   So I look at those photos and gauge who I was then and who I am now; it’s bittersweet. When I went back home to visit; a lot of people told me how much better I looked and how much I had changed for the better; it felt incredible.  It warms my heart that they can see the changes and that I have grown.  For the longest time I was scared of those friends because I felt inferior to them ( mental health issues) and the memories that seeing their faces would bring up ( the death of my brother and the aftermath) I could have never guessed back then I would be writing about my experiences but here I am.   How things have changed..

Thanks for listening

Dave

 

 

 

 

 

 

I just want my brother back

I have to admit I had some wonderful caring and supportive friends growing up. I love them dearly and I know they love me too; Most of that support comes from the fact that my brother died; they knew him and they knew my family; it affected so many people and many have come to me to talk about their feelings of him after his death; it is heartwarming and comforting to know they care so much. Their encouragement and kind words have given me hope that I’m not alone and I have this huge extended family out there who cares deeply.

I am forever grateful for that support but here’s the thing; I would trade all that in to have my brother back. I want to give him a hug and tell him I love him. I want to joke around with him again; I want someone to rely on; someone I know that will always be there for me. I just want him back because I miss him everyday; no amount of support     ( as much as it is appreciated) can bring back my brother or fill the void that he left. I will always feel like something is missing; my heart perpetually broken. How can you relate to people when they have never been through such a painful loss?. Before he died I had few friends and no one really payed attention to me and that was ok because I had my brother. We’d wake up; have breakfast together, play video games, ride bikes, play outside. Sometimes we would fight but we always made up; we were brothers and we had a bond; a bond like no other and we loved each other. It has been 21 years and I can longer remember his face or voice. I remember him as a 17 year old kid and now he would be 38. Maybe he’d be married with kids; I’d be an uncle. It hurts so bad and I used to think it was a mistake and he wasn’t dead; it was the wrong person and he’d be home any minute but he wasn’t.  I remember I was in Baltimore at a conference about 15 years ago and I was talking to someone and I just screamed out ” I just want my fuckin brother back: and I was balling. The guy didn’t know what to do except hug me; there was nothing anyone could and it came out of nowhere. There no reason for me to be so emotional except for the fact i’d been up for 2 days straight.

So while I can’t have my brother back; I can take comfort in knowing I am loved by so many and I have the ability to love them back. There are some people who have to go through this all alone and that is a scenario that is too much to bear. So if you know anyone who is grieving for a loved one ( whether it happened last week or 30 years ago); be there for them; listen to them; let them vent and be angry. Just don’t abandon them. Its not that difficult to give support; it’s not difficult to show you care. Don’t make it an elephant in the room kind of thing; where we both thinking it but afraid to say it. It’s much healthier to talk about these things I say.   Thank you so much for listening as always

Dave

Who are my friends?

Sometimes I miss my old friends and what I want to say is that no matter how far we stray; true friends will always stay in your heart; wherever you are you wish they were a part of your life; then you’d know everything is all right. Friends are kind and they don’t mind if you’re a little strange cause they don’t want you to change. When you are sad and down; your friends are always around; if you are lost and alone you know you can always turn to the friends that you’ve always known; those that have shown you love when you didn’t think you were good enough and had an open ear when life got tough. I feel that it’s a bond unbroken all the word’s I have spoken to you have been true; you helped me though the toughest of times and I don’t think I’ll find another group of people who care about me so much; you’ve been such important people to me and I hope this poem isn’t too corny; but it’s how I feel and writing is only way I can deal with my feelings the good and the bad; I hope this leaves you feeling happy; not sad. I used to be fearful to share my thoughts but lately I have just had some much to say and with the help of my friends I gain more courage everyday. Thank you. Until we meet again all of you will always be my friend; so with that I will end that here.

Your friend,

Dave

Another poem about home (Homesick)

Why can’t I face the past?. When I was there I wanted to moved out so fast now that I’m here I wanna go back. When I lived there everything felt wrong but maybe it’s where I belong and i feel lonely here and none of my friends are near and it’s been ages since I’ve seen those faces; I had forgotten about all the places i hung around. I can’t wait to be back in town, like a little kid I wanna jump around to be home again, my homesickness doesn’t end; I need to go back to mend my broken heart but where do i start? How do I get there and after all these years and do they still care?. It may not be what i expected and i run the risk of being rejected. Going back home is a scary thought and im not sure if i can go through with it so i sit here in an anxious state, having to wait till i can take a vacation back to my roots to where it all began, i ran but the past caught with me and i never thought id be saying i would be back home to the only place ive ever known.