Celebrate Where You Are

Alright, I have a bit of a confession: I had a full-blown panic attack the other night because I was convinced I was going to be alone and unloved forever.

Yes, no less than a week after being so at peace with being single, waiting it out, blah blah blah. I woke up in the middle of the night from a dream - which is recurring and spookily realistic and I couldn't get back to sleep. And if you're familiar with middle of the night panic attacks you can see where this is going. Basically, after a bit of tossing and turning it suddenly washed over me that the dream was just a dream, and it was never going to happen, and I was never going to find love.

Yes, I hear how dramatic this is. It was 3 A.M.

This obviously got quickly out of hand and went from, wow that won't happen, to wow, no one is ever going to love me, I'm never having kids, I need to decide now if I'm getting 3 dogs or 12 cats.

Sidenote: one day we can talk about panic attacks and how that all works, and how it's not just getting a little emotional. How it means that I broke out into a cold sweat, my mouth went dry, I got a panic headache, and felt so emotionally hung over I took two naps on Sunday. Not today though.

The point is, after that panic attack, after that slew of irrational thought, finally getting back to bed around 6 A.M., and waking up a few hours later - still with a headache, but otherwise better - I had some clarity.

See regardless of what happens, 2 years, 5 years, or 15 years down the road, I only have control over what is right in front of me. I can't predict if I'll be alone forever. I can't even predict if I'll make it to work on time tomorrow. I probably will, but still.

I can work myself into a complete breakdown thinking about how all of the big wonderful things may never happen. Or I can just be really present, and celebrate all the things that are happening, right here. Right now. Which has forever been easier said than done, trust me, I know. As someone who is always trying to celebrate the little things anyways, I can tell you this: the more you do it, the easier it is.

Not because it gets easier to make the little things celebratory, but because the little things just keep seeming bigger and bigger.

I'm someone who celebrates remembering to take her laundry out of the dryer. I'll celebrate not burning my tongue on my coffee. I'll celebrate getting a good parking spot at the gym. I'll celebrate getting my leg a little higher, sinking my seat a little lower. I'll even celebrate not getting toothpaste on my shirt.

Because, well first of all, I'm prone to unsuccessfully doing all of those things. So, when I can do them, why not celebrate? I know, it sounds so ridiculous. It sounds so simple. Because it is. It is so simple to just be excited about the little things. It is so simple to make the tiny victories into big ones.

And, here's the thing, it's also so ridiculous to have these big worries about the future. The only thing I can do is keeping working hard every day - in every part of my life. I can only keep moving forward, so why would I want to do that in a constant state of panic?

Maybe this won't solve all 3 A.M. panic attacks (it won't.) Maybe this is as small as being pumped that I finally found the Lenny & Larry's swirl cookie. Maybe it is.

But there is no loss here. There is no downside. You don't lose anything by being able to celebrate where you are, who you are, and what you've got. So why not?

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