Not Good Enough. Ever feel that way? I know I do. Often. Too often. In fact, it is quite possibly the bane of my existence. Well, maybe not the bane of my existence but it is the thing that I have the hardest time shaking and always has been.
When that feeling hits me, I do a little internal search. Why? Why do I feel that way? Is there some deep, dark secret or a devastating buried memory that makes me feel that way? But then, logic never helps when it comes to things like that, does it? It seems the bad feelings, the feelings of inadequacy and non-deserving-ness (yes, I just made up a word) don’t come from a place of logic. They come from a place of feelings. Bad feelings.
But where do those come from? Other people? Did somebody give me a sour look when I was four and had just completed my master mud pie? And did that somehow crush a tiny piece of my soul, which I’ve been trying to get back ever since? Or has it just been a steady and continual erosion over the years. A look here, a word there?
Or worse, does it come from inside me? Just my own self-destructive alter ego, vying for time and attention? It seems I have lots of questions about this but very little in the way of answers.
I sometimes think that that is why I became a writer. To solve the feelings of ‘not good enough’ – as though I believed that if I could just write it out the feelings would evaporate. Never to be seen or heard from again. And in a way, I suppose it’s worked. When I was a kid and I got upset, the first thing I would do was write a poem or a story to work out the feelings or upset. Sometimes it would help and others it would drive me further into the sense of despair and hopelessness. No matter, I still write to some degree for that reason. Though mostly I write because I have something inside of me that needs to get out. It is constantly seeking new and silly ways to get out too. From stories to poems to haikus to jokes, to wise-ass remarks.
I sometimes marvel at this thing. What is it? Where did it come from? Does it belong inside of me or should we see if the zoo has a space for it? Then it ocurs to me that maybe it’s just me trying to get out. Just me, saying, ‘Pay attention to me. I am worthy. I matter.’
The truth is I will probably never know – no matter how much I try. No matter how much I want to know. I will never figure out why I sometimes feel I’m just not good enough. How about you?