28 Sep

Their house is nicer than ours.

She is skinnier than I am.

She has my dream job.

She gets to stay home with her kids.

She has a ton of followers on her blog and is friends with the people I wish I were friends with.

Why do they get to go on three vacations a year?

She has such nice clothes and always looks perfect.

Even though I try really hard not to, I am in a constant flux of comparing my life and everything in it to the lives of those around me, and then trying to convince myself that it doesn’t matter. I have a jealous bone a mile long and it is the thing I hate about myself the most. I can’t turn it off. Even when I’m not actively thinking “I’m jealous of that,” I’m still taking notes of all the ways everyone else is better at XYZ than I am.

I’ve never, ever been a self-confident person. I question everything I wear, do, say, buy, EVERYTHING. I’ve never felt good enough and I’ve always felt like other people are just plain better than me. I think the constant comparison is a symptom of that. It’s as though I have to constantly remind myself that I’m lacking, even when things are going good for me. 

I should make it clear that I don’t think anything or anyone but me is lacking. Hubs works his butt off and provides our lifestyle. It’s me with the crummy job and flailing freelance career who isn’t pulling my financial weight. My kids are phenomenal. It’s me who can’t spend enough time with them or plan the perfect birthday party. It’s me who doesn’t practice writing enough or spend enough time increasing my readership here. It’s me who doesn’t work out and eats popcorn at 9:30 at night.

I’m sure it doesn’t sound this way, but I do fully appreicate the wonderful parts of my life. But I’m not finding the joy in them and that sucks. And it is a kind of bratty and selfish way to look at life.

I don’t know why I am this way.  I could analyze it for years and the why doesn’t really matter. It’s the how-am-I-going-to-change-it that matters. Because while it’s not the kind of jealously that makes me unable to be happy for other people – I’m fully aware that I deserve those things no more than anyone else does – but it allows me to diminish everything I do have. And I have a lot.  And while I try not to ever outwardly say these things, I do not want this type of thinking to spill into my children’s psyche AT ALL. I want them to know that whatever choices they make, they are always good enough.

And the real truth, the truth that I understand in my head, but can’t seem to understand emotionally, is that I am good enough. There are probably things about me and my life that people are envious of. I just don’t know how to make myself understand it in a way that would allow me to accept myself and my life without constantly analyzing the ways in which I’m lacking.

I am enough. I am. I just have to learn how to believe it.


13 Responses to “Enough”

  1. Wanderlust September 28, 2011 at 1:47 pm #

    You eat popcorn at 9:30? I’m eating oreos. Impressed.

    One thing I learned a long time ago is that when you look inside the ‘perfect’ lives of other, or those who we perceive as having the perfect lives, they are far from it. We all carry our burdens. For me, it was a failed marriage and domestic violence. For others it is PND or depression or bipolar disorder or self-loathing or you name it.

    We’re all walking our paths, doing the best we know how to do. Often, we are afraid to expose our underbelly to the world for fear of being judged. But I’ve found that it was just that, exposing my vulnerability, that allowed me to gain strength and accept my situation, as well as receive a phenomenal amount of support.

    None of us is perfect. Perfect is boring. Imperfect is real. x

    • Kristina September 29, 2011 at 10:02 am #

      This is so true – and I certainly know that you never know what happens behind closed doors. Thank you for your kind words and wisdom.

  2. mrslltkings September 28, 2011 at 2:07 pm #

    WOW. You are totally good enough. Even better. You’re great enough 🙂

    One thing that I think always helps to remember is that the people that you look at and think are better are probably looking at you, thinking the same thing. When you see a mom who gets to stay home with her family, have dinner ready, and spend all day with her kids, she is probably looking at you, envious of the fact that you get to break from the daily life and go to work. When you look at the blogger who has a big following, they could be looking at yours, envious of your honesty and your amazing writing.

    The grass is always greener on the other side.

    • Kristina September 29, 2011 at 10:03 am #

      I totally agree – I tell my friends that who aren’t married yet and say they can’t wait to get married and have kids – that sometimes I wish for a weekend where I could sleep in and do nothing! 🙂 We always want what we can’t have. Thank you so much for your support.

  3. Kristen September 28, 2011 at 2:09 pm #

    Sometimes I do the same thing.

    And how DO all of those people get so many blog followers/readers? It’s a mystery to me.

    It’s easy to be overwhelmed and feel jealous or even guilty about what you could be, should be, etc. It’s not as easy to admit it so I think by admitting how you are feeling you are taking the first step to no longer feeling that way.

    • Kristina September 29, 2011 at 10:03 am #

      If I figure it out, I’ll let you know! 🙂

  4. ltotheizzo September 28, 2011 at 3:43 pm #

    I think you’ve just articulated how 95% of women feel the majority of the time. The other night one of our friends was over and she remarked on how my fiance and I never seem to fight and appear to be the “perfect couple.” We both thought that was absolutely absurd yet hilarious because we are anything but perfect. And I can’t tell you how many times I’ve looked at other couples and thought, “Gosh, they seem like the perfect couple.” The truth is that everyone is always comparing themselves to others and when we do this we are alway going to find ways that we come up short. One thing that has really helped me with this is to surround myself with girlfriends who are honest. I know that seems obvious and easy enough, but truly find people who tell it like it is and aren’t constantly sugar-coating their lives.

    • Kristina September 29, 2011 at 10:04 am #

      You’re so right – I never feel this way when I’m with people I know to be genuine and who don’t sugar-coat their lives.

  5. Life of a Doctor's Wife September 28, 2011 at 8:55 pm #

    I can so relate to this. So much.

    “I’ve never, ever been a self-confident person. I question everything I wear, do, say, buy, EVERYTHING. I’ve never felt good enough and I’ve always felt like other people are just plain better than me.” – YES. Yes.

    Why do we do this to ourselves?

    • Kristina September 29, 2011 at 10:05 am #

      Ugh. I don’t know. It’s another thing I add to the list of things I don’t like about myself, which of course does nothing but make it a Vicious circle.

  6. Angela Noelle September 30, 2011 at 11:20 am #

    For what it’s worth, I have a sneaking suspicion that most women (people?) feel this way–even the ones who claim that they don’t. I’ve often found that those who brag loudest about their perfect life are the ones who are hiding something that they don’t want the world to know about. I’m not saying that no one is happy with their lot in life, just that we can’t always take everything that we see about our friends and acquaintances at face value. That being said, I certainly struggle with jealousy, and what I have to work very hard at is not mentally criticizing others just to make myself feel better. It’s a jealousy coping mechanism, and it’s not one that I feel good about.

    • Kristina September 30, 2011 at 11:26 am #

      I do the same thing. And I hate it about myself! I’ve been trying to consciously replace each nasty thought I have with a nice one and it seems to help a little bit, but it’s definitely always something I have to work on.

  7. TheMHalf October 11, 2011 at 9:27 am #

    Mm, I agree with others. I think everyone does this. If not everyone, then every woman I know. Why *do* we do that? This may sound a bit cheesy, but hear me out. Pink has a song out. “You’re Perfect.” Did she write it? I don’t know. But it’s true. You’re perfect. I’m perfect. In our own skin, in our own lives, in our own ways. We are who we are (cliche much? I know.) and no one else can do “us” better.

    Easier said than done, yes? Well, it’s a start!

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