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I got comfortable being sad...


I call this my being vulnerable spot.

You are not circumstance.

You are choice.

You are an action, and reaction.

There is a reason why my access point will be myself only.


You see change is a step by step process. It is the discipline of showing up on a gloomy day with no signs of sunshine. It is showing up for yourself in the face of adversity.


Flashback 2020, I faced a panic attack that landed me in the emergency room. I was diagnosed with clinical depression.


Clinical depression.


“I’m just tired.”


That’s how depression makes you feel.


Tired.


But it’s not like a well-maybe-if-I-get-myself-a-big-ol’-cup of coffee -and-send-myself-off-to-bed-for-12-hours-I’ll-feel-much-better type of tired.


It’s a dear-God-please-cancel-everything-I-can’t-get-out-of-bed-today type of tired.


A term that it is heavy in its weight itself. But it became heavier when my labels of my identity were attached to it - a woman of colour, South Asian heritage, first generation immigrant, and headscarf adorning woman.


Even then in my bones, I knew that I needed help because I had been suffering silently for a very longtime. My need to keep things private and my need to be available for people around me was derailing me in more ways than I could handle.


It was another year later of more panic attacks, personal failures, loss of identity, and my loss of zest for life that I decided to regain back control. Now when I think back, I realize it were those three weeks that I turned bitter led to my wakeup call. It was those three weeks where I came to face with an uglier version of myself - a version that I refused to water instead l decided to walk into a therapy session. It was time to heal.


May 10th, 2022. A year into Theraphy.

52 sessions. 3120 hours. 187200 seconds.

Of vulnerability, grief, and healing.

There is no denying that I am still lost and on my journey. However, a year ago I was more broken than I had been ever. I did not know how to deal with the years of anxiety and emotional damage that I carried inside my bones.


I did not know how to accept my own infuriating uniqueness and I just did not know how to cry for my own-self. I did not know how to accept that having a compassionate heart is more than okay. But most of all I was struggling to let the guard down, which said I am not okay.


That’s the thing about the people in my life they always think -I am rock, solid, reliable. But what nobody realizes I am just a human in need of a shoulder when things are messy.

But you know what?

I am also grateful I did not find one because in the process, I found out I actually have nerves of steel.


Today, in this moment and many moments of utmost resilience I sometimes refuse to recognize my own-self.

I have taken leaps of faith. I have dismantled my own grief.


Because the truth is I have outgrown so many versions of myself, of the people around me, and of the way I live life. I am in the love with the process of intentionally slowing down and reminding myself of my core. You see I am just grateful for another shot at life even though I know that I am still healing - a work in progress.

Rare days I thank myself for showing up. For being resilient in the face of adversity. For shaking myself up from the comfort of being sad. For learning how to unlearn myself. For falling in love with my own quirks and being so comfortable in my skin that it freaks others out. But most of all, for never giving up.


I will also admit today that writing this meant laying down my insecurities, my vulnerabilities , and even opening the room to speculation.


However, if you reading this and feel like you are in a similar rut, I want to tell you light can crack through darkest moments we just have to keep seeking it.

And if you feel shit today and need a random stranger to talk to please know that this place is always going to be a safe space to reach out to.

No questions asked. A silent shoulder if you need or some incredible dad jokes.


Lastly, May we all heal from the things that nobody ever apologized for and may we all find our light at the end of the tunnel.

Until next time...

Love,

Shanzay.

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