Independence is a controversial topic for us Scots. Debates on freedom, individuality, the future of a nation. But today I’ve been reflecting on a different kind of independence, my own independence.
Do you ever wish you were still 5 years old and someone could take care of everything for you without you having to lift a finger? Today I’ve had one of those days where I had a knot in my stomach from the moment I got up. And I don’t even really know why. But when your stomach is churning and your heart is racing, the why doesn’t really matter does it? All that matters is getting through the day, bit by bit.
I love being independent, I do. But sometimes, just sometimes, I wish I wasn’t as determined as I am to be quite so independent. Particularly in weeks like this week, when nothing major has happened, certainly nothing terrible, but small things keep piling up, one on top of the other. Hassle after hassle, a domino effect of inconveniences, anxious gut feelings, and unexpected roadblocks.
I like to think of myself as “Little Miss Independent”, the modern day woman. Which means it’s hard for me to admit to being overwhelmed. Even when I do start to feel it, I put it off and tell myself I’m fine until a day like today arrives, when there’s nothing else for it but to admit to being vulnerable. As we so expressively say in Scotland, I’m “scunnered” with just about everything.
As I left work tonight and headed to my laser hair removal appointment (oh the glamour!), I was torn between wanting to bump into someone I knew just so that I could give them a massive bear hug to make myself feel better, and not wanting to look anyone in the eye just in case I unexpectedly burst into tears at the very notion of human interaction. Do you know that feeling where you feel like you might burst into tears at any given moment? Not because you’re sad or upset, but because it’s like you need a release of emotions.
Anyway, I decided there was only one thing for it: to blast my favourite songs through my headphones while I took some deep breathes…and to head into Zara to treat myself (they don’t call it retail THERAPY for nothing).
But as much as a pretty new tweed blazer helps every situation, the problem wasn’t quite solved. Yes, I managed to distract myself for half an hour, but I still couldn’t shake the feeling. So, I headed home and called in the big guns via video call: mum and dad! It was a nice reminder that I have some of the most amazing friends and family both here and at home who are only a phone call away if I ever need them.
That being said, it doesn’t mean that it’s not still in my make-up to want to be independent, to want to do things for myself and to deal with emotions on my own. Particularly over the past 5 or 6 years, I’ve become so used to living alone and dealing with things in my own way that I hate having to ask for help or admitting I’m overwhelmed. But I guess everyone needs a helping hand now and again and that’s ok.
Now that I’m feeling more relaxed, I’m away to try on my new Zara purchases so that I can at least look fabulous taking on my never-ending to do list for the week. Priorities, right?