Well, Now They Know…

Well, Now They Know...

“Conceal, don’t feel, don’t let them know…”

“Can’t control this storm inside of me.”

These are just two quotes from Disney’s Frozen that relate to my life. All my life I have dealt with depression and anxiety. Thankfully, it is something I can manage on most days, other days it completely consumes me.

My anxiety is much worse than my depression; it’s something that is a constant battle within me. I get anxious over everything, even going to church. My anxiety causes me to become paranoid. Part of my paranoia is believing that literally no one in my life likes me. I have convinced myself that my friends don’t like me and that my church hates me.

These feelings don’t just show up out of thin air, they are based on things that happen while interacting with people. Sometimes it’s silly things, like my friend not hugging me or saying goodbye (because they obviously DIDN’T just forget). Other times it serious things, like praying by myself in the altar when other people have at least one person besides their spouse praying with them.

Like I stated earlier, I have dealt with this my whole life, so I try to act the way each group of people in my life would expect or accept for me to act. At school, I was quiet. At music school, I am loud, goofy and carefree. At church, I am very reserved, I have gotten to a place where I can’t even sing or direct the choir without a mini heart attack because I am so worried about what the church thinks of me.

My husband tells me that I love Disney so much, because I can relate to the characters, but the one he thinks I relate the most to is Frozen. He always says that I have an Elsa personality and an Anna personality.Frozen_Anna_Elsa I have the fun-loving, quirky, awkward and outgoing Anna personality, that only he, and some of my friends see. On the flip side, I have my very proper, quiet, self-conscious, never wanting to be the center of attention, backwards Elsa personality; this is the personality that the rest of the world (outside of my husband and close friends) sees. There are some personality traits that are pretty consistent: I’m caring, kind, loving, considerate (my husband says its to a fault), and awkward (I can’t escape that personality trait haha). I guess those would be my core traits that everything builds off of.

Obviously, there is a time and place to be loud and outgoing, and a time to be quiet, so through this blog, you may not see these conflicting personalities as a big deal. It wouldn’t be, if it were something that I chose to do. When I get in my Elsa personality (which is most of the time since Anna doesn’t come out to play much), I feel like I have to conceal everything that makes me “Katie.” I am so worried that I will make someone dislike me if I am myself. I know how ridiculous that sounds, but it’s true. “A kingdom of isolation, and it looks like I’m the queen,” another quote that could really go along with how I feel most of the time.

frozenI try to show my real personality to people, but it’s like I’m weighed down by what people expect me to act like. No matter what I do, I feel like I am unlikable and unloved. Mellow-dramatic? Maybe, but this is how I feel, and I don’t mean for it to seem that way. I’m not the only person who deals with this; there are plenty of people who feel like this too. They fill our churches and work places, they are our neighbors and the stranger in front of us at the Dollar Store. Point being, you never know what’s going on in someone’s life; we see what they want us to see.

Every choice we make when dealing with people, will either help them feel like Elsa or Anna. We can help them feel free and happy, or we can make them feel like they have to conceal themselves from us. This is especially true within a church. Every person that enters our doors are battling something, even the members that come every time the doors are opened. You won’t always know what is going on in their lives, but you always need to treat them with kindness and how YOU would want to be treated.

When someone, whether you know them or not, goes down to pray, go with them. You have no idea what it’s like to be battling something (especially something like depression and anxiety), and go to the altar and be praying by yourself. That’s not a good feeling for anyone, but when you’re already battling depression and have anxiety, and you always assume that no one likes you, so it’s 100 times worse.

Go out of your way to say hello to someone. Hug them. Tell them you’re proud of them. Shoot them a text or call them. You have no idea how much you could help someone fight their Elsa personality by just showing them a little love. An act of true love can thaw a frozen heart; be that person to someone in your life. Let them know that they are not alone and that you care.

“Conceal, don’t feel, don’t let them know. Well, now they know…”true love

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