Monday, July 27, 2015

I Want to be THAT Girl

My lack of confidence is a huge weak point.

For me, it's not really a huge deal to admit that.  I already know everyone who knows me semi-well knows I struggle with self-confidence.  It's not a surprise or a shock factor.  Or at least it shouldn't be.

  The people who say, "Just let it roll off your shoulders."  "Don't worry about it."  "There's no need to be upset."  "You shouldn't feel that way."  "God loves you no matter what."  "Why does it matter what other people think?"

I recently ordered a book written by a Christian author named Jen Hatmaker.  It's a book about seeking grace in a world with impossible standards.  Whether you're a Christian or not, it's impossible not to agree that life is hard.  Living a good life is hard!  So many double triple quadruple standards out there that make it difficult to ever feel like you're doing it right.  If you are naturally thin you get scorned for being "too skinny".  If you are overweight you get shamed and called fat.  If you're skinny you get praised for looking so good and get all this extra attention.  If you are overweight you get praised for being brave and not afraid to live in your own skin.  If you breastfeed your baby, you get called a hero and that you're "doing it the natural way."  If you formula feed you're lazy and not giving your baby the nutrition it needs.  If you breastfeed you are enabling your child and spoiling him/her and making them too dependent.  If you formula feed you are making a better decision and making it much easier on yourself.  If you post a Facebook status about how tired you are you get a string of comments that tell you to "just be thankful for another day of life".  If you post about how thankful you are to be alive, people block your news feed for being annoying and posting too many pointless things.  When you perform well at your job and get recognized, people call you a brown-noser and over-achiever.  When you get in trouble at your job, you're a slacker and don't have business being in that career field.  Or you're a victim of unfair treatment.

Sometimes I feel like I am so buried in the middle of a heap of impossible standards that my head is just spinning.  Trying to be a perfect mother/wife/daughter/daughter-in-law/sister/friend is just too much to handle.  And even though it's easy to say, "All that shouldn't matter.  You don't have to be perfect."  Fine...Watch what happens the moment I stop caring and stop trying.  That is what I simply don't understand.  People tell you not to care, not to worry, not to try so hard.   What does that look like?  What if I just stopped being polite?  What if I just said the first thing that comes to my mind all the time because "it doesn't matter anyway"?

Sometimes I want to be someone else.  No, not another separate person.  I love my life and would NEVER trade anything for my husband and son.  But just another version of me.  That version of me that I sometimes think I am is a pretty amazing person.  And I want to be that girl all the time.

I want to be the girl who I see as pretty.  Not perfect.  But pretty.  No matter how much prettier other people in my life may be.  But I want to be pretty too.  Seen as pretty by others and by myself.  And not because someone tells me I am, although that helps.  I look in the mirror and I think, "Hey, I look good!  I'm pretty!"  Sometimes I AM that girl.

I want to be the girl who I see as fun to be around.  I know my friends think I'm funny.  My husband always tells me I'm funny.  The amount of laughs I get from him are an extra reassurance.  I like to be the goofball in almost any situation.  My family knows this too.  I am that girl who isn't afraid to make a fool of herself in front of a crowd.  Sometimes I AM that girl.

I want to be the girl who I see as a good teacher--actually who is good at most things she does!  I work hard and am successful and I get recognized for my work.  I am humble, but proud of my accomplishments.  I accept compliments with grace and humility instead of feeling embarrassed or as though I need to apologize for my success.  Sometimes I AM that girl.

I want to be the girl who I see as an excellent wife and mommy.  I know I make mistakes, but I'm really good at admitting when I am wrong.  I love my son more than words can say and he thinks I'm pretty awesome.  I sing to him, dance with him, play with him, and I can make him laugh harder than anyone.  My husband thinks I am pretty awesome too.  He loves me to the  moon and there is nothing he wouldn't do for me.  He doesn't ever wish I were like anyone else or acted differently.  He doesn't care if others might feel that he made the wrong choice in marrying me.  He thinks the world of me.  Sometimes I AM that girl.

Many days, unfortunately, I see myself as none of those things.  All the outside standards and influences creep in and I see myself as someone who is annoying, high-strung, too sensitive, too polite, controlling, over-bearing, not pretty enough, inferior, and not the best mom/wife.  I just wish these influences weren't so much louder than my own little voice.  That voice is the one I need to hang onto.  That voice is the one that tells me I am good enough.  I'm pretty enough.  I'm smart enough.

Today and everyday I'm going to try to listen extra hard.

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