2 May 2013

Growing up is not for the faint hearted.

It's only lunchtime and it is already one of those days where I have cried way more than I have smiled.  And the frustrating thing is that as I stood in the sunshine, hanging out the washing, crying in that face distorting way which is never how it looks in the movies - I know that this will pass.

What I have not yet learnt to do is -.

  • Not let the opinions of a few, matter so much more than the majority.  
  • Stop defining myself, even temporarily, by another's perception of me, however inaccurate.  
  • Not care. 
I have always wished I was one of those people dripping with confidence and a sense of entitlement that even deserved criticism fails to dent their self perception.  And they do exist.  I always used to think maybe it was just a front, but I have these people in my friendship circle and they are actually very confident of their own awesomeness. And that is not a dig.  It's essentially faith, and faith is a grand thing to have - whether it's in yourself, a deity or others. 

And then there are others of my friends who are lovely without knowing it, beautiful without realising it, extraordinary but believing otherwise.  And I recognise that all of us have the capacity to be more than the sum of our own minds but that self belief is a blessing that not all of us lined up to receive.

And so, as I am still learning to process self belief rather than it being instinctive, its taken some time today to get back to the point that I am able to intellectualise the emotional and feel calm, be accepting of myself, and remember that the lingering feeling of sadness will go.

I really thought that being a grown up would get easier as time passed.  I really did. 

12 comments:

  1. I think sometimes we have to fake it until we make it. It's hard to feel faith in yourself when you have that little voice in the back of your head telling you that you are worthless. I think it's something that we all strive for as human beings.

    Thanks for linking up with us at The Lounge

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    1. We can only ever aspire to be the best version of ourselves. Thanks for letting me be part of it.

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  2. xxxxxx
    Hello dear A!
    Growing up is so so hard. I feel like this is the first year I have ACtUALLY realised stuff about life and really understood it. It's a weird sort of sense of my own mortality which in turn is sort of liberating and makes me care less about what others think.
    No idea if that makes sense but sending you some xxx anyway

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    1. Thanks for all the xxxx. It's amazing how the GAFF (give a f**K factor) can fluctuate so wildly. Really appreciate the support xx

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  3. And like those friends of your who don't know it I'm sure that you don't realise just how great you really are. People can only hurt us if we let them (I know, incredibly trite but its true). Focus on the stuff you do well, I'll be there's so much more than you think there is.

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    1. That's so incredibly kind. Thank you. It's true, not trite and the frustrating thing is allowing it to come through. x

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  4. I really relate to this post. I've struggled with self acceptance all my life, especially with being so introverted in a society that values extroverts. Growing up is overrated, isn't it? Sigh. Hugs to you. x

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    1. Introversion is underrated. And I say that as an Extrovert. Being able to draw your energy from yourself is an extraordinary gift. Thank you xx

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  5. Growing up - sometimes it really doesn't live up to what the brochure said when we signed up for this lark does it? I think it's about learning to ride the highs and lows. Like you said you know things will pass eventually - sometimes you just have to grit your teeth and see it through.
    If you met me you'd probably think I was one of your confident lot - it seems to be what I project. But there can be a fair bit of self-flagellation going on under the surface that no-one will ever see.

    Thanks for linking up with The Lounge - hope to see you again soon! Rach the Lounge Lizard x

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    1. Thanks Rach. There is a lot about the brochure I take issue to as I grow older... completely falsoe marketing. :-) However, there are a lot of joys and I need to remain appropriately focussed. x

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  6. I went to read everyone else's comments, but then had to get my own down first. What a fantastic post that struck a nerve with me for so many reasons, not in the least of which was a memory of school girls so long ago: of a confident, bubbly girl named Alison who I looked up to and thought was someone I wanted to be like. Happy and not at all bitchy - just a lovely person. Isn't it funny the perceptions we have of ourselves and those of others? And, as you said, knowledge that those feelings of inadequacy are unfounded doesn't help when you're in the midst of feeling otherwise.

    Perhaps if we applied to ourselves the same advice we dole out readily to those we see as feeling less confident than we believe they should, we'd be okay. Perhaps - and this is one I'm trying to live by - if we thought of our daughters as feeling the same way later in life, and the knowledge that our own behaviours of self-doubt might have affected them in some way, we'd be willing to love ourselves more. When my daughters ask or comment, I TRY to tell them confidently that my squishy bits are a sign of all we have been through together; my girls will be tall and, even though I was self-conscious of it as a child (being in the school photograph in the back row centre of all the boys and towering above them was not much fun at the time), I want to teach them to love their height and love their looks: my blonde, green eyed four-year-old, my red-headed, hazel eyed two-year-old and my brand new brunette, blue-eyed boy. I know a mother's love might not be enough and I know that they can't go through life without going through pain... and I know I can't cushion them forever, but I can hope that the worst they have to deal with is anything the Brady kids had to face - anything that can be sorted out in a handy half hour episode (22 minutes with ads). I'm pretty sure I could handle anything Carol and Mike had to handle.

    But anyway, thanks for this post.

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    1. Hey you, I'm so appreciative of such a wonderfully supportive, insightful and loving reply. You are so right in all that you say and realising how much our little people pick up so quickly and so young, creating an environment for them that allows them to thrive and love themselves is indeed paramount. When I give thanks for Facebook, it is mostly for allowing me to reconnect with some of the wonderfully positive people I didn't have the courage or knowledge to know fully when I was younger. Though ancient history did stand me in good stead for the travel. Big love, Al x

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