I struggle with self worth.
I was in 4th grade the very first time I ever considered my worth; I was in 4th grade when I compared myself to someone else for the first time.
Someone will read the word “compare” and think I’m judgmental, thinking that I puff myself up in the faults of others, but to that person I say:
Don’t worry, you get the better end of the stick. No matter who it is, the person I compare myself to will always be better, more interesting , funnier, smarter, more unique and intriguing. They’ll always be enough for someone and I’ll always be barely mediocre.
I wasn’t enough.
Just like I wasn’t enough to be someone that a boy wanted to love purely and unconditionally, only physically.
I wasn’t enough for my friends to stand by my side when it came down to my word against someone else’s.
And I wasn’t enough to make someone care about me long enough or passionately enough. I wasn’t enough to cause someone to not let me leave in tears late at night when it was pouring. I wasn’t enough to keep someone’s interest, to keep someone talking to me or coming around. I wasn’t enough to make the boy want to make ME his girlfriend, but he’d turn around and make HER his girlfriend.
I thought it was me; I was convinced that somehow, if I just tried hard enough, I could create a new personality for myself that I considered enough—somehow, I would be able to MAKE myself worth loving.
And so I wrote. When I wrote, I could take the nitty, gritty parts of myself that I believed were lacking and make something admirable out of them; I could create the image that I had in my head of the ideal version of myself; I could create the girl that no one wanted to see brokenhearted, the girl that people didn’t understand and yet adored for that very reason, the girl who was enticing beyond belief, with the quick comebacks, the witty humor, the interesting thoughts and conversations; I could create the boy that was there for her, who hurt when she hurt, who looked at her like she might just be magic; I could create the friends who didn’t leave, the people who were there no matter the circumstances, loyal through and through. Because that’s the sort of personality I wanted, the sort of person I wanted to share life with, and the friends that I wish I had.
And in all of my feeble attempts, in all of my striving to be enough, I was missing out on the opportunity to enjoy being me; I was missing out on opportunities to grow as a human being because I was too busy trying to measure up to some image that I had created for myself and that was always just out of my reach no matter what I did.
My error: trying to derive acceptance and my own worth from other people who were running on the treadmill next to me towards some goal that they believed would finally secure their own worth.
I had to train myself to stop looking around at how wonderful everyone else was and to instead look ahead—rather, to look UP. In fact, I am still training myself to discover worth inside my own skin rather than through the actions and words of others, still just embracing the idea that:
I am enough.
-Written and Loved on by: Jenna