Time has been a good thing for me.
While in the very midst of counseling, time felt like a foe. Each and every day was a battle. Nights were long, full of anxiety and worry and overthinking. Each minute stretched out endlessly and I would focus on just trying to make it through another day, until I could reach the safety of my therapist’s office once more.
Slowly, slowly, I started to heal. The frustration did not go away. The overthinking did not go away. But time–days, weeks, months–of fighting the same difficult battles over and over again, started to allow me to find a new perspective.
I have always been an instant gratification person. Patience has never been, and probably never will be, my thing.
So, as I went through my journey, I spent so much of my energy focusing on how I wasn’t better RIGHT NOW.
Dammit. I wanted to get better NOW.
I didn’t want to wait another second. Waiting another second felt like a failure. I said to my therapist, many times, “But I have been waiting 30 years!! This isn’t FAIR!”
Yet, repeatedly, people would say, “Change comes with time. It doesn’t happen overnight.”
I rolled my eyes. I stomped my foot. I said a lot of four letter words inside my head.
But, guess what? All of those people were right.
Time has changed me.
OR…I have changed over time.
Learning to conquer panic did not happen overnight. Learning to let go of the hard things that happened to me as a child did not happen overnight.
Changing my relationship with my mother did not happen overnight.
Learning that my real friends are there no matter what did not happen overnight.
None of it did.
I still have lots of changing to do. I can still be too sensitive. I still overthink. I still react first, then try to talk it through, rather than the other way around.
But, time has given me awareness. Time has given me perspective. Time has helped me see, even if it is a just a small amount more, that I have some value and some worth, and that my energy is better spent elsewhere.
I’m not perfect. I still feel anxious. I still get triggered.
But each day, I feel a bit stronger. And the days that I don’t? I know it is JUST that day.
Tomorrow will bring something new.