Well, I just did... did you miss it?
Did you miss how I almost apologetically admitted I am going to school? I am only a student I tell you, a little bit embarrassed that I have not accomplished anything more at my age. I don't have some beautiful love story to post about, or adorable children. I have a dog. He is more stubborn than I am, hates having his picture taken and pouts when I come home late... every night.
I am going to college. That wasn't so bad, right? I can say it with a little more confidence now, getting a feel for what I want to say. I have a job that is incredibly flexible so when I lose a six page paper a few hours before it is due, I can leave and stare a computer for three hours and try to throw something together. A few days later I will find out I got an A on my paper and my professor will encourage me to learn the rules of writing so that I can do something with my talents someday. My coworkers will be thrilled for me and feel better about me leaving in the middle of a Monday. They are proud of me; they celebrate my victories knowing they are making sacrifices for someone who wants to succeed.
But for some reason, that is not enough; I am not doing enough; I am not enough.
No children, no career, no place of my own. In fact, I have been living with my parents for the past two years after spending eight years out of the house. I have good friends though, and they all want me around when I can be the life of the party. I made the Dean's list last term. Women everywhere think I am amazing and smart and beautiful. When I get an honest compliment from a woman, the first response from another woman is "why can only women see that?" Because without validation from a man; compliments from women mean nothing.
Someday you will look back at this time in your life and it will seem like such a small moment you tell the computer screen, hoping the universe will somehow communicate it to me. But while I look at you, with your family and your children all I can think is, "what is wrong with me?" I want to be married, I want to have children. I want an eternal companion that will value me and will expect me to value him in return. We will work together to overcome the selfishness that comes with getting married at an older age than twenty one, and be frustrated together when people make comments about us not waiting to have children.
You will read my words and know not how to react. She is supposed to be funny, you think to yourself. I think those things too. I think about how I am not allowed to have real feelings, because my role in life is a supporting actress, I am only here for the comedic relief. Please hear me when I tell you, I appreciate the freedom my life offers. In an afternoon I can decide I am going to California for the weekend, just because I want to help one of my best friends with a street fair, and even if she decides not to participate in the street fair, we are going to have an amazing time together. The street fair was just an excuse to make plans. We will laugh and cry and make memories. It will be beautiful. I will not always have the freedom to be spontaneous. I look at the positive things and acknowledge them as positive and I keep trying to pretend the negative things are not negative. I will pretend that I am happily singing my way through this stage of my life and that I do not know what it feels like to have the fear of feeling like a failure hanging over my head every day. Because in the culture I live in, the culture I love despite it viewing me like I am not enough, if I never get married or have children, I am a failure.
Maybe I shouldn't talk about it, maybe I should just smile and keep saying that I'm fine. Because that isn't a lie, I am fine. I'm better than fine. I am working to make my life better. Someday I will look back at this time in my life and roll my eyes at myself. Even though I am trying, every day I try to appreciate that I am going to school and have lots of support from my family. Every day I try and appreciate that I can work on aligning my will with the will of The Lord, without having to explain my choices to anyone. Every day I can work on feeling like I am enough. One day I will know. One day I will see that even now, as I write these confessions to you, afraid I am unable to communicate what I truly feel, I have always been enough.