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  • Lotus Magazine MC

yours truly, elizabeth

My entire life, I had always wanted a tattoo. Even when I was little, I was not scared of the needles or the pain, but instead that I would one day regret the decision of the design I chose.


I think about this a lot because I always knew I wanted to be successful, happy, and surrounded by love from a young age. I could even imagine being that way when I got “older”, when I had finally settled down, had kids, and took part in more hobbies than I could count. The part I struggled with was envisioning how I would get there. The years I am currently living have always seemed so blurry. While I knew I would end up living a life I love in the long run, I lived day to day overthinking everything. Before making any decision or commitment, I would run circles around myself with all the ways it could ruin me. Before every commitment, I would ask myself countless times if regret would be an outcome. Whether it was an outfit to wear, a school to attend, or a relationship to get into, I never trusted myself to make any decisions regarding my own life.


Let me tell you, it is exhausting living when your own mind is convinced that it cannot trust itself. It is the feeling of being on both sides of a trust fall, when you are scared of hitting the ground and scared of not being able to catch yourself. Telling yourself over and over again that you are your own demise.


And for a while, I was.


I committed to people who did not love me in the way I deserved, actions that did nothing but belittle and shrink me as a person, and took care of myself as if I was someone I could not stand. But most of all, I was destroying myself by allowing such a chaotic space in my mind, and so little trust in myself.


The first year of college was hard for me. It was the first time in my life where I was in an environment that allowed for a level of calmness to look introspectively and change, which was terrifying. However, I decided to take all the parts I loved about myself and emphasize them, growing into a person that I can trust and love. It was not quick or easy, but I started treating my mind and body well by listening to it. Not the voices that would cloud my judgment and question me a million times, but instead my true instinct. I let go of all the people and the things I surrounded myself with in fear of failure, and instead threw myself into places I could thrive. I joined a sorority, gained new friends, traveled, went on spiritual retreats, joined research teams, found jobs I loved, and met the sweetest boy who is always in my corner cheering on absolutely everything I do. But most of all, I cleansed my mind. It is not perfect, and it still gets cloudy from time to time, but it is now a place where I can comfortably sit and think instead of lying in fear and anxiety.


I have slowly started to picture the future. The future before my hair turns gray and my children have children. The future where I am twenty-four and having picnics in the park with people I love, watching the tulips sprout and spilling mayo from my sandwich onto the blanket. But most importantly, I hear laughter and I see smiles. I can now see throughout my life, instead of just the end of it.


I still don’t have all the answers as to what I am going to do with my career, what talents I will continue to tap into, or where I will live, but I have enough trust in myself to know that I am not going to fuck it up. I trust that I will get to where I am supposed to be, even if I mess up once or twice along the way. I trust myself to know I will have no regrets, because all that I do leads to who I am, and I am pretty proud of who I am.


Two weeks ago, I got my first tattoo of a scene from Perks of Being A Wallflower. I had this idea for a while, but was still scared I would get bored of it or regret it. Finally, I trusted myself enough to know that thirty years from now I will look at it and see all the versions of me I have grown throughout that have morphed me into a beautiful soul. I trust myself to make permanent decisions about myself. I trust myself to love it.


I always wanted a tattoo, and now I have one.


Yours truly,

Elizabeth


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