REJECTION 101

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               Over the past year I’ve been slowly putting the broken pieces of myself back together. This eye opening journey thus far has been painful, scary, tough and confusing at times. When I made the decision to walk blindly into the unknown truths of life, is when I faced with my biggest obstacles. I am currently in the midst of a severe storm; one in which has no boundaries. I’m being hit hard in every single direction. This storm is called rejection. And since everything has a name, apparently I have Rejection Sensitive Dysphoria, or RSD for short; which basically means I don’t handle rejection well. What guided me to this conclusion is the overwhelming feeling of being stagnant. I literally had to sit down and ask myself “what more can I do?” I’m the queen of self help books, and living a healthy lifestyle. I felt like I’ve tried EVERYTHING from learning how to meditate, journaling daily, changing my diet, stepping out of my comfort zone, eliminating toxic people; if you can name it, I’ve done it. So I couldn’t understand how come I’m still in the same place I started. How come I’m not getting any answers, or at least moving even an inch towards the right direction?

In the midst of having a mental breakdown, it finally hit me. I’ve been playing it safe this entire time. I’ve been doing the things that I’m comfortable with doing in hopes that it will change my situation. Yes, those things I’ve mentioned have helped me in a lot of ways, including bringing me to this point. But none of it had the power to push me forward. None of it had the strength to break the last chain that has prevented me from moving towards my greatest potential. The only thing that holds the power strong enough to set me free, is me. I’ve went in every single direction except for one, and that’s facing the fear of rejection. I’m the youngest of five siblings on my mothers’ side, and the only girl. As a child I felt invincible. I couldn’t relate to my brothers and they didn’t relate to me, which led me to feeling like the only child. In the midst of feeling like the only child, I still had people surrounding me, but no one actually SAW me. Every time I spoke they would say I was too “emotional,” which stopped me from expressing how I felt for a very long time. I felt constantly brushed off, overlooked, and discounted. Even during the holidays I felt like I was only around to babysit my nieces and nephews. They automatically assumed this responsibility for me, even without asking me. I remember being 7 and 8 years old crying so hard in my room cutting my wrist. I never cut to actually kill myself but I would cut in the hopes that someone would notice the marks, therefore they would notice ME. I use to write in my diary at 9 years old saying things like “I wish I didn’t exist because no one notices me anyway. No one cares about how I feel. My mom works all the time, and my brothers have their own kids so they don’t care about me. My father (who I haven’t met at the time) doesn’t even care about me or his family (who I’ve never met, ever.)” I truly felt rejected, unworthy and small for my entire childhood. Little did I know that I would carry this feeling into my adult life. I’ve been subconsciously sabotaging myself before I could even get the chance to blossom.  Every single time I walk into something that could potentially lead to something great for me; I reject myself. No matter what the situation may be, when I walk into a room filled with powerful people, I feel small. I feel like that little girl who is unworthy of getting attention. I feel like no one cares about what I have to say. I feel like I DON’T BELONG. I feel like I made a mistake, and I would never be enough. So when I feel this way, I automatically reject myself. I tell myself that I need to be seen and not heard. I convince myself that I should’ve never put myself in this situation to begin with. I ALWAYS FEEL LIKE THE LITTLE GIRL WHO CUT HER WRIST IN THE ROOM BEHIND CLOSED DOORS. I immediately feel intimidated by people in power.

Photo by Juan Pablo Arenas from Pexels

WOW! It took a lot for me to admit this to myself. I literally had gone back to every single situation where I felt powerless. Then I had to go back even further to remember where this feeling stemmed from. It hurt to think about it; it brought tears to my eyes because for years I tried to forget that feeling. Even right now typing this message is hard because in the back of my mind I can hear my brothers telling me “You’re way too emotional, man up!” My first instinct is to click backspace. My first instinct is to crawl back into my bubble that’s been keeping me “safe.” My inner child is currently telling me that no one cares about what I have to say, and to continue existing without making any NOISE. I am TIRED of feeling worthless. I’m tired of shrinking in a room filled with powerful people. I’m most definitely tired of denying myself access to the greater things in life. Today I’m breaking the last chain, because I AM WORTHY, I AM ENOUGH, AND I MATTER. I deserve to take risk, and follow through without having the fear of rejection. Rejection is not something to be avoided; instead it’s a step towards the right direction. If I allow myself to take risk without having the fear of rejection; I’m also granting myself the opportunity to grow. It was never because I’m not worthy of greatness; it was just because I couldn’t see my worthiness.

Here’s my advice to myself, and you: Whatever it is that’s holding you back from reaching your fullest potential, challenge it. Face it, and heal from it. In order to have the future you desire, you have to revise the story you’re telling yourself. Your story didn’t end with whatever it is that’s holding you back. You still have time to turn the page.             

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Love, ELLiE

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