My hair was always my glory… “You have such strong thick hair, it’s beautiful” they would say, but I have never been my hair. I woke up today and decided to G.I Jane my look and take off the façade. It felt like there was too much weight on my head that was a collection of mounting pressure- I needed some sort of relief. I have been able to fake a smile through the pressure my whole life- it felt necessary to break the system of conforming to and creating high expectations.
Our lives are a gradual succession of checkpoints, we finish high school then we go to college and then land our first jobs then we are expected to get married and start a family. If only it could be so logical. Suppose you graduate from a good college and land a good job at a good establishment- and yet you forget to be grateful, because somehow you have carried the burdens that you inherit, or those that you promised or even those you never lost.
I remember when I rejected a scholarship to an Ivy league school after high school, not telling my parents or my friends because I feared that the pressure I put on myself to perform in school would never come to an end. I knew I would never be able to enjoy college and that I would carry my anxiety into my twenties- I felt so desperately the need to breathe.
This year, I felt myself back in that cycle, only this time my heart was not in for the win….. I became doubtful of my accomplishments and my skills- I couldn’t recognize myself. I was stuck in a routine that was interfered with different characters of chaos and disappointment. I felt overworked, but I also knew that I was underperforming socially, professionally and spiritually. The difference with this version of myself and 1.0 stressed out Sabrina was that I didn’t see the worth in changing my perspective.
Feeling trapped, I struggled to look for solutions- I was comfortable to just get through the day and to try hard to sleep at night. Though I shamefully accept that I am spoilt, knowing well and good that if I were to drown in my problems I was fortunate to have lifelines that would keep me afloat; it is a quality I no longer wish to have. That’s the problem with wanting change but not practicing change; we become contradictions of what we think we know and what we actually deliver. Then what do we become…… a whole bunch of potential that cannot channel their best self because we are resistant to move out of situations that we are comfortable in.
The past few months have been a test of acceptance and rejection on all fronts- overthinking and underperforming, sleepless nights and trying but still failing. This week I made decisions to let go of things that I loved, hated and once believed in to start over- where or how to start afresh I cannot say for sure….. but they all feel right and for the first time in a long time I feel fearless. I woke up with a gut feeling to let it all go, for my sanity- I let go and let god.
At some point you realize that you are not fooling anybody with a fake smile, when your mental state is in shambles and you are exhausted- people notice. Peace of mind is freedom ; sleep is priceless; good health is golden. I have learnt from the best, I have been mentored and guided by support systems that have pushed me to be the best version of myself and to take ownership of my faults. I will take those lessons with me wherever I go as I unfold myself to get back to ground zero.
Shaving my head will not take away the overthinking nor is it a remedy for feeling the world falling on my shoulders. But it is a symbolic moment for me because it is a choice that is purely my own. I am taking ownership of my own decisions without the pressure of feeling I need to do anything for anyone else or anything else. I feel light headed- I feel free.