I can not believe that it has been a year since I last posted. Over the last year, I decided to take some time to focus on myself, away from social media. Today is not only my thirtieth birthday, but also a personal beginning; my new year. I wouldn’t be able to start this new journey towards a new decade, without reflecting on the last ten years.
To say that my twenties were easy, would be far from the truth. There are so many things that I have experienced in these last ten years. That I not only have kept bottled inside, but have also helped me to discover new things about myself, that I wasn’t ready to accept. I think one of the biggest challenges anyone in their twenties can face is SELF DOUBT. As you may or may not know self doubt is a feeling of uncertainty or lack of conviction. Doubt can also lead to ….Anxiety, Fear, Loneliness, Depression, and Self Hate. Truthfully speaking I have faced every single one of these feelings more than once in my twenties.
Anxiety for me always starts with situations that I can’t control. I am not an individual who likes surprises. I need to know what is at the forefront of the future, as a way to protect myself from being misled or hurt. Anxiety eventually turns into fear, which for me in my early twenties became a consistent cycle. Being a gay male in your twenties , and a black gay male at that is enough to fill anyone with anxiety and fear. I came out when I was 18, and what I thought would be a sense of relief, turned out to be everything but that.
There is something to be said when you wait so long for FREEDOM, and when you finally get it, it leaves you with even more uncertainty, and guilt. I have for so many years felt a since of guilt for living in my truth, and wanting to be comfortable in my skin. But still feeling like an embarrassment to others. This feeling led me to feeling alone for many years and eventually kept me in a quiet state of depression, from the time I was 21-25. Where I didn’t feel loved from family and friends; I looked for in romantic relationships to fill the void.
Anyone that has ever loved and loved hard can recognize, that to LOVE also means that you risk it not being reciprocated. Experiencing this type of love in MOST of my relationships, led me to think that I was unworthy of being loved, which turned into self hate. Over the years I can remember feeling so depressed and sad that I could barely make it out of bed to face the day, or even want to try.
My biggest lesson on my journey thus far, and in my twenties has been SELF LOVE. As a kid in school we are taught so many things. But the one thing that is missing, which I think is the foundation of whether or not you’ll succeed in life. Is learning how to like, love and accept the image staring back at us in the mirror. I understand that nothing in life is perfect, or ever goes as planned. Sometimes friends let us down, and hurt us in ways we can’t fathom. Heart break is inevitable, and no one rich, poor, big or small is exempt from feeling such pain. Putting a time on where we think we should or shouldn’t be in our life is pure torture.. don’t do it to yourself….you’ll thank me later. I thank god for pulling me through some of the hardest days in my twenties, and allowing me to come out on the other side.
There have been so many days where I never thought I would make it to 30. Or when I was down ever wanting to get to this point. I am forever grateful for the Self doubt, heartbreak, loneliness, and depression over these last ten years. All of these things have given me more confidence, in knowing who I am. The type of people I want to be surrounded by, how I choose to give and receive love, and gain clarity on things I Still don’t understand. As I celebrate this new beginning, I can only smile and look to the future. No longer worrying about what’s behind me, but excited to fully live in MY TRUTH, and not make any apologies for it.