my endless cycle

you know how every now and then, you’ll get this idea in your head and it seems like everything connects back to it?  almost like your life develops this theme that it decides to highlight everywhere for it.  it’s been that kind of week around here, and i’m still trying to wrap my head around it all.

in both my professional and parts of my personal life, i struggle with feeling like…a kid i guess is the best way to describe it. i have very little confidence in myself and my abilities, and i have a lot of difficulty giving myself credit when it’s due.  i see myself as a person who lets other people walk all over her and feel very uncomfortable speaking up for myself.  when i do, i often feel that my opinion/ideas/concerns are minimized or downplayed, and were never really valid at all.  it feels like i’m still just some whiny little kid trying to get the grownups to hear me.

along the same lines, there’s always this nagging fear in the back of my mind that i’m going to get found out.  that other people are going to start to notice that i’m this impostor, pretending to know what the hell is going on around me.  faking it at being an adult.  i feel like some kid fresh out of my teacher prep program stumbling through my lessons or meetings.  like someone is going to show up one day and say “ha! you thought you could raise a baby!  you’re no mother!” like my friends or ralph are going to wake up one day and realize it had all been a charade, and i’m really not worth the drama/work/effort to have a relationship with.

that i’m not worth loving.

that one day, my world will crumble into pieces around me, and everyone will finally see the real me.

i don’t know how to fix this distorted view of myself.  lord knows i’ve tried – there’s been a decade of therapists having this same exact discussion with me. over and over and over again.  logically, i know that i am a good mother/teacher/wife/friend.  i could write you a list of all the good things about me.  i know that my friends and family care about me and that i deserve their love.

but i can’t get that little voice to go away.  it’s this undercurrent in my life – in all aspects of it.  and it has reared it’s ugly head this week.

there was an issue at work.  i don’t want to go into to much detail about it on here, but the important parts are that: 1) i had a suspicion that a coworker was trying to take advantage of the fact that i missed out on some important discussion while i was on leave and get me to agree to something that i shouldn’t; 2) because these discussions happened before i returned/because some details were left out of emails, i was making assumptions that were incorrect and in general quite confused about what the hell was even going on; 3) my attempts to get clarification were not responded to.

it all came to a boiling point in a email cc’ed to supervisors and other administrators in which i think my involvement in these discussions was misconstrued, and not in a good way.  instantly, i felt like that little girl again, and i didn’t know how to defend myself.  well, let’s back up: instantly i got upset and defensive.  but i didn’t trust my response.  was i reading too much into this whole thing?  was it even an issue?

and maybe that’s the whole problem – i don’t trust myself and my own opinions.  that little voice chirps up and says i’m being a drama queen again.  so i need to seek reassurance from people who’s opinion’s i trust that i’m not over-reacting.  but then that just reinforces that i can’t take care of myself, and amps up the drama in the situation.  and i feel like that kid again, and i’m terrified that i am annoying  my friends, and it all spirals out until i feel like i handled it all wrong.  and then i just chicken out when it’s time to do something to protect myself and my reputation.

i feel like this has been a bit rambly and never really got anywhere, but there’s too much other important things on the to do list to keep going for now.  there will probably be some more soon at some point, but that post might end up being password protected so i can get this all out/think it through without putting everything all out there.

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4 thoughts on “my endless cycle

  1. The feeling like you’re pretending to know what your doing is pretty common, especially for women. I see it all the time in my friends with PhDs…. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Impostor_syndrome

    As far as missing communication, I guess I’m a pro in that area. People will always forget that not everyone knows everything they know. Sometimes you really have to jump up and down until someone fills you in. I feel like I tell people I’m deaf so often they must be sick of hearing it, but until I stop missing info I don’t have much choice unless I want to stress about what I missed.

  2. I don’t think any of us really ever feel like we know what we’re doing. And those people who look like they’ve got everything figured out are usually the worst. They just hide it really well. I know you already “know” this and it won’t change what you “feel,” but you are an amazing mommy, teacher, friend, wife and sister-in-law. And I’d be willing to repeat that whenever necessary!

  3. I agree that this is a really common feeling. No one really feels like they know what they’re doing, and yet, we all seem to manage just fine. Try to take it easy on yourself.

  4. I was thinking about this post yesterday and it made me think about how I never really feel the way I thought I would when I grew up. As a kid, you think that when you’re a grown-up, you’ll feel like a grown-up. But, you don’t….at least, I don’t anyway. I feel exactly the same as I did when I was younger, only now I’m expected to know how to raise 2 little boys and they think I have all the answers (well, except for the times when Jack thinks I’m an idiot, but that’s just part of him growing up too). Anyway, I think we all feel like we’re imposters sometimes. I’m not really a grown-up or a mommy with all the answers. I’m just a young kid playing house.

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