Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Celebrate the Small

I do it all the time with my kids.

Licked a fruit? Celebrate!
Said a word? Party time!
Went to the bathroom? Let's have a freakin parade!!!

With a kid on the spectrum, you tend to celebrate a lot of small victories, because they are no longer small at all. The hurdles are high and it takes all that they've got to get over them. And when they make the leap and land on their feet, I'm there to applaud and rejoice and be proud.

So why can't I do that for my own bruised self?

I was abundantly vulnerable sharing my struggle with anxiety with you all. I don't know that I've ever received such an outpouring of love and support. You told me that I'm not alone. But I still find myself going through a whole lot of mental self abuse.

I make a phone call. And instead of celebrating the fact that I did it, I berate myself for struggling to make it in the first place. Big Deal, Anxiety Me says, So you did something that every normal adult does all the time. And I feel weak and childish for even feeling a moment of pride in the accomplishment.

And if the call doesn't go well? Oh, then I may as well call it a day.

Why do I do this? Why can't I take pride in overcoming my anxiety? Why do I make it another way to beat myself up?

I don't have an answer. But I do know that every day I celebrate victories for my children. I see them struggle so much, so seeing them succeed is even sweeter. Maybe I need to take a lesson from myself here. Maybe it is time to celebrate the small, for myself. Maybe, just maybe, I deserve it. I'll try to get that through to Anxiety Me.

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