I’m 36 and I am a geek. Is that too old? Hell no!
I spent most of my 20s hiding who I am because my undiagnosed anxiety got the better of me. At 29 I got my shit together, learned I had depression and anxiety that had been driving the ship. I got help, I was put on anxiety medication and began seeing a talk therapist. Once the treatment started kicking in, I asked my therapist, “Is this how everyone else feels all of the time?” Ok you may be thinking why did I tell you that, I promise it will all tie together shortly.
Consequently, I’d missed out on so much because of my mental health challenges. I dated a slew of assholes. I mean they started out great then slowly became controlling, cheaters, verbally abusive and one even physically abusive. One of my key traits of anxiety was being a people pleaser, thinking I could always change or love someone into better behavior. If I had one wish in life, it would be that my anxiety got diagnosed as a teenager and not at 29.
As the saying goes, I was all out of fucks to give when I got the right treatment. Three months after I started to get help, I got promoted. I said “no” to friends and commitments I didn’t want to do. I formed a better relationship with my family and cut toxic people out of my life completely. I vowed to stop monkey-barring from one relationship to another. I casually dated for 2 years, recognizing red flags in men very quickly. I learned how to put my oxygen mask on first. I met new friends who actually had similar geek interests. Instead of suppressing my weirdness, I leaned in and embraced it.
Eventually, I met my husband. I was so over dating by our first date I didn’t act prim and proper. Finally, I let my geek flag fly. I told him I like to spend time with my friends and I’m not sure I want anything serious. As the date went on I rambled on and on about absolutely anything and everything. I thought surely, I’ll never hear from him again. Well, I was wrong he asked me out again. It was my lightbulb moment; that maybe I am enough as I am. Game changer!
We became inseparable. I told him about my love for the Marvel Cinematic Universe, stand up comedians, the Big Bang Theory, and Ancient Aliens. Love became so easy and I never felt that pit of anxiety in my stomach, I trusted my boyfriend completely. We both knew pretty early on that we were Endgame. On our wedding day, he had his best man bring me down a gift of flowers, a heart-shaped diamond butterfly (a node to my mother who passed away) and a small stuffed Iron Man (my favorite Avenger). It was the perfect wedding day gift. Our cake was classic and beautiful and at the bottom 4 Ninja Turtles peaked out. I had found my equal!
I found myself and fell in love with me. Once I fell in love with me, I met my husband, my best friends and a great family relationship. To sum this up: see a therapist if you need to, geek out, be yourself, get rid of toxic relationships and you will find your community.
For more tips on how to cope with Anxiety click here