Growing up as “background noise”

I was talking with a friend the other day and had one of those “come to Jesus moments” while snarfing down my yummy Mexican salad. I realized that I have taken the role as “background noise” most of my life.

Let me explain-

I had recently gone on a trip with my boyfriend and his group of friends to vegas. What should have been a shit show of hard laughs and getting “Kutched” a.k.a.. TOO DRUNK, I spent a good amount of time being anxious and mopey because I felt so uneasy about expressing myself to new people. I was worried that I would say or do the wrong thing and end up leaving a horrible, nasty, big-fat-dirty, bad impression that would forever thwart my efforts to become part of my boyfriend’s life.
During this trip, because of this anxiety, I just couldn’t enjoy myself and the only time I allowed myself to have fun was when I was “under the influence.” Okay, seriously. I do not want to live my life like that. What kind of life is that? I expressed, towards the end of the trip, that I just couldn’t handle all of the pressure despite being told many times that I didn’t have to worry.
This really got me thinking- Why couldn’t I let it go?
Suddenly it came to me mid-salad-snarf, “Oh My God. I have been background noise all of my life. Why would anything be different now?” That’s right. I had a breakthrough while I was eating a Mexican salad with my best friend. I realized that it had less to do with me being anxious around new people and more to do with the role of “background noise” that I lived my life in.
I can think back to playing that role most of my life. Whether or not the people around me tried to treat me like the “fat kid” coming in last place, that is always how I felt. If I really think about it, its shaped so many of my life experiences and is responsible for the rude, MeanGirl things that my head likes to play on repeat. It makes sense that playing any other role made me feel uncomfortable and instead of expressing myself and being “okay” or feeling good about what I had to say, I continued to validate the belief that I wasn’t important enough to express who I really was. I needed help and I needed a new paradigm to operate from.
Then I found a book.
I searched on the internet for things like, “best books for women’s self esteem” and phrases of the like and stumbled upon an article. I told myself that I would look through the list and read the ones that called to me.
Boy oh boy, my wish came true.
Of this list, one stood out in particular. “Psycho-cybernetics” was written by a plastic surgeon that delved into the phenomenon of plastic surgery and the attempt to fix the inside by chipping, enhancing and plumping the outside. I knew that I needed to read this book. As soon as I began to read, I was highlighting and “ahh-ing” voraciously. I couldn’t believe that I had found a book that so delicately spoke to me exactly the way I needed to be spoken to.
Within minutes the author was speaking directly to me and I felt like someone was seeing me, finally.
Maxwell Maltz writes about changing the face of someone that was disfigured, changing their face, and thereby changing their life while also having just as much failure with another patient. It was so clear to me that a seed was being planted in my mind. I was operating from the “BackGroundNoiseGirl” paradigm and that I could choose to feel disfigured for the rest of my life or I could learn to operate from a new paradigm.
Now, I’m not sure what that paradigm will be. I’m excited to find out though. I’m excited to know what it’s like to feel “good” about who I am. To finally stop beating myself up for things I had no control over (or so it seems). Doctor Maltz mentions that a paradigm shift takes place when you stop saying “I’m a failure” and you start saying “I failed this time.” It’s time that we look at the situations that we find ourselves in most often and take a hard look at what lies beneath the surface.

-The Curvy Broke Girl

PC: Odyssey Photography

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