My name is Nicole and it means victory. When I was a child I thought that was so cool. Nicole means victory, to be Victorious. I felt it a promise, a sign from God that I would have a victorious life. It wasn’t until many years later I realized that in order to have a victorious life you must face some battles. And I do. Every day.
Sitting down to write the “about me” page became a greater challenge than I had imagined. All the top bloggers in the industry said “Start with the about me page and go from there, it is the best exercise to get started.” I should have known, because I already hate exercise. (That was humor I am letting you know here since you can’t hear it in my tone.)
About me, I like to make people laugh. I like to make life a little lighter, a little easier, a little brighter. I like to spread hope and encouragement. I like to let others know it is going to be okay, mostly because it is what I wish that I’d have had. If I could go back in time and tell myself one thing it would be we are all okay and not to worry because worry is wasteful and useless ... (that is a song) but it is true. I spend a LOT of time worrying. I call it analyzing, but I analyze everything beyond measure. I am so self assured that if I figure out all the possible worst case scenarios I can avoid them. I have been proven wrong on this belief so many times it hurts. And because it hurts, I laugh. And I try to make others laugh. Because ultimately, things do tend to work out and we are okay and worry is useless. But I can’t seem to help it.
Research is often my go to. Write an “About me” page? What does that even mean? My first step was to google it. And it made me laugh as the elementary school worksheet bubbles filled my screen. I said Elementary school! That is because writing about ourselves is among the first things we learn to write. Introducing ourselves to the world, learning about who we are and what we like is among the first things we work on in school. Here I am billing myself a writer and writing those “should be simple” first things is giving me stomach pains. But it isn’t because I don’t know how. It is because I do.
I know my goal here. I know here I will be honest with you and with myself in a way I haven’t been before. Not Ever! Because now I know something about me I couldn’t admit before.
But I don’t want to talk about me….
I don’t like to talk about me. I like to help you. I like to make others think about and see things differently in the hopes that it will have a positive impact on the world. I like to believe that my writing will help you to laugh and be encouraged. To feel empowered in your journey. To feel less lonely in the world. Maybe even to spread kindness and joy. Like if there is something that I share with you, having already learned the hard way and that very thing helps you the reader to not have to learn the hard way and you gain some perspective and then that causes you the reader to feel better about your life and your purpose maybe you will be kinder to the people around you and your life will be better and their life will be better and then they in turn will be kinder to the people around them and that is how my writing will change the world. (longest run on sentence ever). And that my friends is how I channel my anxiety powers for good and not for evil. Because I have anxiety. I don’t get to channel it to the positive every time a rabbit trail of fear attacks my mind but I am trying.
I was 36 years old before I admitted to myself that what I have been battling my entire life is in fact anxiety and depression. I was 37 before I could say it out loud and 38 before I allowed a doctor to “diagnose”it. I was afraid that by naming it I would give this thing some type of control or power over my life. The truth was that it already had power over my life for years. I focused my time on trying to channel and overcome the symptoms rather than treat them. I am happy with that decision at least.
Now don’t get me wrong. I am not a sad frumpy Eore type of gal. In fact just the opposite. You won’t see that side of me. I hide her well. Because depression and anxiety is something I battle not something I wear. This is not who I am, it is something I deal with. At my core, I am fun. I am wise. I am compassionate. I am the type of person you would probably want to be friends with because I work hard to be that person everyday.
At my core I am a helper. I want to make the world a better place. I want to feel valuable. I want to help others to feel valuable too. In the past few years I have accepted that this is my battle. It isn’t wrong or bad, but it is hard. One of the things that made it so hard was believing that is wrong or bad. The truth, I am finding, is that it is common. In fact - it is rampant! And instead of finding encouragement and help coping I am seeing shame and silence. So I guess, if I am really going to help, it is going to be by being honest. Honest with you and with myself.
I battle depression.
Depression does not define me and it doesn’t define you either.
I wanted to write this to admit what I am battling, what I have always battled. What made me feel wrong, and alone and different from everyone around me. I wanted to let others know YOU are NOT alone. I want to tell you it is going to be okay. Because no one told me - they couldn’t - they didn’t know what I was going through. There is help. There is hope.
Here I plan to share the victories I have had and the battles that I face. I hope to offer encouragement and community. I hope to offer solutions and compassion. I hope to make you laugh (even though this post probably didn’t do that.) I hope you will join me for the journey. Buckle up friend it is going to be a bumpy ride - but it will be worth it.
So here it is... Raw. Honest. Me.