You might be worrying about your:
- past mistakes
- awkward moments from yesterday
- adequacy in other people’s eyes
If you are, I empathize with your worries.
I am imperfect. Some days, my tag hangs out of my shirt, and my natural hairstyles don’t always live up to my imagination. While I am generally positive, I have moments when I’m irritable and impatient. As a self-critic, I am vulnerable to frustration and sadness whenever I encounter obstacles.
On the note of imperfection, I make mistakes, regularly. Although I strive to be brave, there are times when I allow fear to dominate my actions. Sometimes, I’ve sacrificed the freedom of being myself in order to be accepted. This mistake is just one example among many.
I can sometimes be an Awkward Black Girl. Shout out to Issa Rae! Just yesterday, I gave several unintended, awkward stares! College, alone, bursted with interactions that were weird, uncomfortable, and quirky. Unexpectedly, some of these awkward moments of discomfort helped me grow.
If you’ve been reading “Roots and Hope” since the beginning, then you know that I also care so much about what others think. This struggle has manifested through anxiety over likes and comments on social media. On April 2, I began an indefinite break from Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat. All of these sites can be fun platforms to “keep up” with others’ lives and thoughts. For me though, they led to envy, comparison, and a need to be validated. I had to take a break, and remind myself that my life is blessed. I had to choose joy by limiting my engagement on these sites. While at work, at church, with loved ones, and with strangers, I have to constantly tell myself, “I’m enough”. If I don’t, I’ll instead attempt to read people’s minds, assume they find fault with me, and let that determine my value.
Being imperfect, falling short, feeling awkward, and seeking approval are some of my experiences. These challenges can feel like barriers that stop me and possibly you from moving forward. If you woke up today, try to remember that it is a NEW day! You are not defined by your quirks or weaknesses. May you feel replenished by the gift of a fresh morning and opportunity to try again.