I’ve been thinking a lot lately. Even more so than I usually do, in my general state of over-thinking. As someone with anxiety, it’s one of the things I do best. But I’ve been digging really deep into my brain and thinking about life. About what makes me happy. About how to become happy. Because I didn’t think I was there yet.
A friend texted me the other day to let me know that he was at a Halloween Party in the Southside of Pittsburgh with a few kids that went to high school with me. When he asked them if they knew me, they said “yeah, she’s lame. All she does is post online about bands and think she’s cool for being in with them” or something along those lines. I’ve been thinking about this a lot. Not because I really care about what these two guys dressed up like a cop & a priest and probably never said two words to me in high school anyway think, but because I care about the way I come across online, and in general. I strive to live an authentic life. I don’t want to mask when I’m struggling, I don’t want to hold back my excitement when I’m happy, I don’t want to shy away from sharing my life with the world for fear of judgement from people who never bothered to know me. The only way I’ll stop showing my feelings is if I think that it’s necessary for my own well-being.
Somewhere in these past few days of thinking about what these two random people who don’t really know me at all and probably never did (but think that they do based on my online profiles) said about me I realized that maybe the happiness I was trying to find was already inside of me. Maybe I am happy. Maybe I am right where I need to be. Of course, I’m not happy every single day, and I think I was silly to think that someday I would reach a point where I would be. But reflecting on my life, what I share, the way I feel about the experiences I’ve had since graduating college, I think I’m there, or maybe I’m really close — I’ve spent the past year of my life traveling around the USA working for my favorite band. Seeing places in this country I never would have gone otherwise. Becoming close to people who inspired me and meeting new people who now do too. Living dreams I’ve been chasing since I was fourteen. And the coolest part of it all, for me, is that I have been able to share all of these feelings online to show that you can quite literally do anything you put your mind to.
I don’t post on the Internet to impress old high school bullies. I post on the Internet to show my family and friends that I am living a life that I am content with. That I am happy doing the things that I am doing. To show the kids who wait in line at shows that I was just like them a few years ago dreaming of being on the other side. That anything is possible when you put in the work.
So, Cop & Priest, if you are reading this, if my authentic-self and happiness upset you, feel free to hit the unfollow button. You don’t deserve to see me thrive.