I could write an introduction. I could explain that I’m a wife, a mother, and I have a job and interests but that will never truly tell you who I am. Those are things you will learn about me along the way. They are things that come as relationships and trust are built. So I want to start with who I truly am. I want to start with something that allows you to know me on a deeper level and says take me or leave me.
These two words are probably the best description of myself that I could give a person. They are also the greatest warning I could give someone who is trying to get to know me. So, as I continue, you’ve been informed and you’ve been warned.
Let’s blame it on my parents. As long as I can remember, they’ve told people that I’m “strong-willed”. For those of you who don’t know what that means, the dictionary describes it as “having a powerful will; resolute”, which sound pretty amazing, right? What wonderful characteristics. Now, the dictionary also says, “stubborn; obstinate”. Yep, there it is, that one describes me a little better. Strong-willed really means “brat who thinks they should get their way at all times” and honestly, I’m okay with that.
My mother and father spent a lot of my childhood telling me that I’m beautiful, intelligent, and talented. And by golly, I believed them. I still do and it’s fueled my personality along the way. I’m truly blessed to have such supportive parents and they are pretty blessed themselves to have had someone as amazing as I am to raise.
Now because I was given such a large boost in confidence at such a young age, I constantly find myself responding to general statements in a way that probably makes me sound slightly insufferable and full of myself. I bump into someone at a grocery store and apologize, they answer with “You’re fine” and I place a hand on my hip and strike a bit of a pose coming back with, “I’m so glad you noticed”. There are times when I go above and beyond and someone says, “Thanks! You’re awesome.” without even thinking my immediate reply 9 times out of 10 is “You got that right! More people should realize it.”
Now, don’t get me wrong, I have my days where I’m feeling down and I think I suck. In fact, I feel this on most day lately and I know where the blame lies, I just haven’t made up my mind what to do about it yet. However, I have this metaphorical wiffle bat that I use to beat that negative voice back then I tell myself all of the amazing things I love about me.
Since having my youngest child, fifteen months ago, I have been struggling with what I’m still calling “baby weight” even though we all know it’s probably just straight up fat at this point. I’ve always been just a little thicker but never carried the weight in my gut like I have since giving birth to her. For a brief moment, I worried this would completely destroy my confidence. I worried I’d be just like all those other women who complained constantly about being fat. I will admit that I pay attention to that gut and I’ve tried a couple of “fad diets” to get rid of it. Has anyone ever tried those wrap things? Oh Lord, they smell divine! But I always tend to find a way to think along the lines of “Geez, I look good and I’ll be even hotter when I drop 30 pounds”.
Fortunately, the certainty I have in myself doesn’t end with what I see in the mirror or the extra weight could have caused a problem. I honestly believe I have the ability to succeed in anything and everything I try. There’s plenty of things I’ve failed at but there’s always something in the process that I feel I’ve done amazingly and I try to walk away with that.
I tried cooking one of those boxed meals that come with all of the ingredients and all you really have to do is follow the directions and WAHLAH! master chef in the house. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case for me and it looked/tasted nothing like I expected but I’m telling you right now, I don’t know a single person who can mince garlic the way I did. I also can’t draw to save my life but I do these funky, scribbled, little characters that would make an awesome comic strip in the Sunday paper. I sucked at soccer but I was the most entertaining goalie our little town had ever seen as I hung from the poles of the goals and did flips.
I see so many people in the world who seem to lack any confidence at all and it hinders their ability to strive in the world due to that uninterrupted voice of doubt that keeps whispering in their ear. I hate that little girls are constantly comparing themselves to models or actresses and thinking that’s perfect instead of looking at their freckled faces or not quite so perfect hair and realizing they are truly beautiful.
Now, this isn’t being written to tell you exactly how exceptional I think I am. You’ll figure that out on your own in time. This is more a desire to help you realize how amazing you are. This is a longing to give other women, and men if you’re interested, a few tools they need to be happier and to love themselves the way they deserve because true love starts with how you feel about yourself!