I fuck up. I mean lets face it, every one does. It is an inevitable part of being human. And so often the mistakes are ridiculously simple. Yet for me, my demons go into a feeding frenzy over every mistake, trying to use it to amplify the fact that I am undeserving of anything good. And sometimes, in those moments, I’ve learned that all I can do is to laugh at myself. Because laughing at myself helps keeps the demons away.
This morning is a perfect example. I had absent-mindedly been addressing an envelope and, because I wasn’t paying attention to what I was doing, inverted the addresses so that my return address seemed like the recipient address. Luckily, when I went to the post office to have postage put on it the postman recognized that I was sending it to the same town we were in and was like, “do you really want to do that?” at which point I was like , “fuck, now this guy probably thinks I don’t know how mail works.”
And in the past the demons would have had a party of this simple mistake, relentlessly hounding me about how unworthy I am. But today I was like, you know what, this kind postman doesn’t know me and maybe sees me once in a blue moon. And even if he did know me, who cares. If I were a betting man I’d be willing to bet we all have made careless errors like that one. And anyone reading this who lives with mental illness probably also recognizes the negative spiral it can set off.
Yet when I laugh at myself, I am sending a signal to my demons and the world that I won’t let this mistake bring me down because that is what we all do from time to time. And if anything, I should be particularly thankful that this mistake was such a simple one and could be so easily corrected.
So hate to break it to you demons, but today I’m smiling my mistakes away. And I hope all of you reading this can do the same.