Once upon a time there was a little girl who was the centre of her mum and dad’s world. She was the first-born child and had confidence that was way beyond her years. When she started kindergarten before the age of three, she felt right at home. After all, school was where she wanted to be. However, at that young age, she learnt two lessons the hard way. One was that adults could let you down and the other, some people could not be trusted. Yet, she didn’t let this break her completely. She continued to be vocal and boss others around.
Her primary school years were filled with studies, competitions, play and friends. She stood first or second in most of her exams and almost always finished at the top of the class. She participated and won in most public speaking competitions. She danced. She sang. She tried to do it all.
When she was merely ten years old and about to finish grade 5, she learnt the family would be moving. She was devastated to be leaving her friends and her beloved school. She began grade six at a new school in a new country. That first year was tough.
She had to get used to new school hours, new people, a new syllabus, a new way of living. Unfortunately for her, she bombed in her first tests. ‘I expected better from you,’ said her teacher, shaking her head in disappointment. ‘You could have done better,’ said her parents. She was not even close to the top three. ‘You can do better next time,’ said her parents.
So she tried harder. But again and again, no matter what she did, she didn’t land in the top three. She participated in competitions and didn’t win a single prize. Her reports throughout the year said ‘Can do better.’ In grade seven and aged 11, she got good marks in English. But the misery continued in maths, science, history, geography and hindi. ‘Has the potential to do better.’ said every report. Soon she realised, that she just wasn’t good enough academically. She tried out for a competition and was humiliated in front of her peers by a teacher. Another teacher brought her to tears in the class by making fun of her hair. This same teacher later brought her to tears at a parent-teacher night by telling her mother how she would amount to nothing.
Not good enough.
The girl went into her shell. She stopped participating in competitions. She lost all confidence and doubted herself. She disliked how she was fat and wore glasses. She realised she was just not good enough. This belief followed her through school and later, through college and university. There were always comments of how she could do better, therefore justifying her belief that she just wasn’t good enough.
She worried about letting everyone down. Letting her parents down. She worried she’d never get a job. She’d never achieve her dreams. Because she wasn’t good enough.
But then, she surprised herself. She managed to achieve a lot of her dreams and when she met new people and new friends, they all called her brave. They seemed to think she was enough. It wasn’t her marks or her looks or how she spoke. It was for who she was. Good friends stuck by her. She found someone to love. Her pets never judged her. Her parents are proud of what she’s made of her life. Her sister looks up to her.
Yet, in stressful times and moments of doubt, a little voice continues to speak in her head ‘Not good enough.’
She hopes some day she can obliterate this voice once and for all. That one day she can stand tall and proclaim ‘I am enough‘. She hopes that regardless of her job, her income, her house, her lifestyle, her looks, her weight, her achievements, she can attest ‘I am enough‘. She hopes that soon she can accept her imperfections and truly believe ‘I am enough‘.
Have you got a ‘not good enough’ story? Or do you believe you are enough?
If you are new to Friday Reflections, here’s what it’s about. It’s the end of the week, you’re probably exhausted with work, and all you want to do is sit back, put your feet up, sip on some fancy cocktail or wine, and write away.
Write Tribe and yours truly give you writing prompts and all you have to do is choose any one of those prompts to blog about and link up between Friday and Monday. After you link up, be sure to spread the love by visiting other bloggers who have linked up too.
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Prompts for this week:
1. What’s your favourite season of the year? Write a post about that either in the form of an essay or a creative piece
2. Go people watching and write an ode to a stranger you see on the street
3. Are you a pushover? Do you find it hard to say no? Share your learnings and experiences.
4. “I am enough” – Brene Brown. Use this quote as an inspiration for your post or within your post
5. Picture Prompt (credit: Everyday Gyaan)
Our featured writer for last week was Parul for her reflective post on Friday evenings — a time most of us look forward to!