Today is Monday. Normally that. means starting the day with a bit of a meh attitude. However, today my morning went pretty well. We were at the school on time, early infact. I took Darwin and Ezra to the park and we had a lovely time playing on the swings and running through the wet leaves. Something I was tagged in on instagram by The_Norm account, has had my little mind going in circles this morning and I wanted to share my thoughts here with you.
This is the post that Natalie created, she makes beautiful handmade lettering designs over at www.the-norm.co.uk
Her caption to go along side this image spoke some real truths to me. She says
” I doubt my worth in pretty much all aspects of my life. Marriage. Motherhood. Friendships. As a daughter. A sister. My day job. My business’… ‘ I doubt (there it is again) I’ll ever change and really know my worth… I guess what I am trying to say to you…. is don’t let someone tell you that what you do or how you are isn’t worth the time, money or effort, because you my dear? You are fucking fabulous” – Natalie Ford, Creator of The_Norm
This got me thinking about something that has been playing on my mind recently. Self Worth. And how bloody hard it can be to have it. I have also been thinking about the someone, that Natalie refers to in her writing. For me that someone is…ME. I am the one that tells me that what I do and who I am, isn’t truly worth the time, the money or energy of others. I am the one who fills my mind with images that back up MY doubts in my ability to be a good Mother, I am the one that tells myself I am a fraud whenever someone encourages me in my Motherhood.
I am the one who doubts my ability in my writing. I am my biggest critic. I am the one who tells myself that it is ‘big headed‘ to think that people will want to read what I write. I tell myself that I am not special enough, talented enough or committed enough to truly make something of myself. I guess I am lucky that I have a supportive network of family and friends, who truly believe in me. In all honesty, it can be quite overwhelming. I am a people pleaser and am constantly in a state of fear of letting people down.
The thing that has stuck with me today is, that so much of this is self projection. Yes my friends and family would like me to be successful, BUT that is not a precusor for their love. If I am not successful they are not suddenly going to stop loving me. They have loved me this far, so why would they suddenly quit. As I was dropping the boys to school today, the three younger ones walked in, hand in hand. I was so proud. As I thought of how I feel about them, I wondered how they felt about me.
They did not care I didn’t have a scrap of make up on, or my hair was hastily tied into a Mum bum, whilst still wet or the fact that Zachary doesn’t have his proper school shoes on. They cared that I was there to encourage them as they all walked alongside each other, they cared I was there with kisses and cuddles when they inevitable fell over. They cared that I was there. There are many people in my lives who I worry I am letting them down when I forget to send a birthday card or I have to cancel meeting up again, when I don’t have enough money to make a trip to London. I realise that although they would love me to do these things. They understand when I can’t.
They don’t see me as someone who is unreliable, they see a Mama who just can’t leave her kiddo who has a fever. They see a Mama who realised it was a privilege to stay home with her boys and was therefore happy to take a loss in income, even though it is really only herself and her husband who feel the cuts. When they see me writing and sharing on here, they don’t see a fraud, or someone craving attention, they don’t see someone untalented and undeserving. They see someone they know, working through their own demons. Trying to find a sense of normality. They see someone demonstrating vulnerability and strength at the same time.
My point is, I am really, really lucky that I do not have any notable naysayer about my worth/talent/achievements*
*not even my Mother in law
However the flipside of that is. The Naysayer lives in my head and it is really hard to turn it off. But if you are like me. I have a challenge for you. When you start to doubt yourself or talk yourself down. Think of what someone who loves you would think or what you would think if it was a friend. Look for a silver lining in all that you. Celebrate your small wins. Rejoice in your victories, however insignifcent they may seem. Today, I am going to be proud of myself for writing this post. for sharing how I feel and for hopefully letting people know they aren’t alone in feeling this way and sometimes all the support you could ask for, isn’t enough if it doesn’t also come from within.
And to my friend who recently said she felt depressed that she was heading closer to thirty and was a single mum living in a council house.
Here is what I see
A Mother who refused to accept anything less than what her children deserved.
Someone who wants to be contributing to society and their local community; as well as instilling a good work ethic into her children
I see someone who has secured and created a home
I see someone who is young, strong and independent
I do not see a sterotype,
I see someone working hard to co parent
I see someone working hard to create and capture memories for her children
I see someone thoughtful, loving and kind
I see a wonderful Mama and a truly wonderful woman.
So please, for a minute. Take some time to see your self as others truly do. Remember the greatest gift you can give someone is your time.
Much love and many thanks