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Am I enough? I’ve never thought so. I feel most of the time, I am perpetually failing at everything I do. As a woman in recovery and having had extensive ill mental health, eyes are on me at all times. Judging. I feel piercing stares seep into my skin as I sit among my family or walk down the street darted by the gossip mongers sideways glance. Am I really enough?

Am I enough for my family?

I’m the one who has made it her business to heal the family trauma. You know the one all the self-help books talk about. The child who finally refuses to accept the generational abuse, lies and game playing to keep all the sticky secrets hidden. My healing is viewed as an extension of my mental illness. I’m a rebellious, irreverent, jezebel who talks too loud, and laughs too much. I’m not accepted in the body that I inhabit nor the words that I write. I forget things. Sometimes there isn’t bread in the larder or milk in the fridge. I just forgot to pick it up after work. I forget to keep appointments sometimes. I’m expected to hold myself up along with my children and husband. Am I really enough if I am not enough for them?

Am I enough for society?

God no! I carry a little too much weight on my hips and tummy. I don’t play the “who can be most attractive to men” game. The decoration of my body, my clothing and wild hair are frowned upon. My bosoms are too large and offend some sensibilities. I don’t have a group of friends who holiday together or have dinner parties. I’m not interested in what you’re wearing and I don’t want your husband. Mostly drama-free over here. Would I be good enough if I was just like you?

Where do I fit in?

Nowhere, apparently. Not even as a child was I accepted by most people. I’ve never really known loyalty from others. I was always left out, pushed aside, discarded. All of that has taught me to be loyal to myself but it took awhile to get to that point. It was a hard lesson to learn that to be a good woman is to be good for others. Oh how I tried. Oh how I still do and oh what a lie.

To be a good woman…..

is to be true to yourself. To be a good woman is to teach by example how love and acceptance for self leads to victory over our daemons. We can continue to care for others of course but there must also be space for care of self. All that love we pour onto others can be wasted on those who don’t appreciate it – or want it. Keep some back for yourself.

Am I really good enough?

I am good enough for me. In all my imperfect mess, I am good enough for me. I don’t care if you approve or not. What freedom! Nothing will drive you crazy like abandoning yourself. I haven’t done that and how proud am I of that fact. It’s a gift afforded to me at birth – my inability to tolerate the intolerable. I will not conform to your good-enoughness.

You shouldn’t either!


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