SALT stands for Suicide, Anxiety, Life and Travel. Salt in its pure form for cooking is something that every body needs to survive. Salt is composed of sodium and chloride, which are two electrolytes that help maintain fluid balance and the transmission of nerve impulses. It helps your body absorb chloride, amino acids, glucose and water in your intestines. Sodium also helps your body regulate blood pressure. (Yes, there is my inner science nerd coming out.) But, in this case SALT is something that sums up my life almost completely. From everything I’ve lived through and survived to incorporating something that I need to live each day.
Throughout my life I’ve believed I was leaving footprints, little time markers, for others everywhere I went. In reality I wasn’t leaving as many footprints as I thought. I was taking on more of other people’s footprints throughout time. At one point I didn’t even know who “I” really was. I had become a person who changed for everyone and who was different for each person that they were around. I was a people pleaser. But the only person who wasn’t happy was me. I had lost myself in the rush and the whirlwind of consuming media trends and pressure. Since I didn’t know who “I” was, I didn’t even know how to accept myself.
I bounced from one bad relationship to another, got divorced and became utterly lost. On a impulse, I quit my job as a Special Education Teacher and joined the Army. If I was looking for a way to find self acceptance and confirm to myself who “I” was, the military was not what I needed. I attempted suicide and failed. I have been clinically diagnosed with anxiety, depression and chronic pain. But, I persist every day and now I’m retired and I’m here.
I look at the first post on this blog from 2013, a time when I was utterly optimistic and I smile. I was going to delete it since it doesn’t seem to be me anymore but in fact it is. I kept to myself and hid everything that I was feeling, everything that I was going through. Why? Because I cared about what other people thought of me. Because I was worried that they would judge me. I never continued my blog after that first post because I was too worried about what other people would think. Why? Why should it matter? If this place helps one person or no people, if it only helps me then it was worth it. Life should not be about worrying about what everyone else will see, it should be about doing what makes you feel good and accepting yourself because you are wonderful, inside and out. Embrace your “imperfections” as perfections and keep making footprints. Realize that you need SALT in your life. You can not hide from your past or deny it because it is what makes you the person that you are.