Woman with Folded Arms
Pablo Picasso, 1901-02.
I’ve decided to twist my writing style a bit for this post, and tell you little bit about myself. Not in the form of small talk though, because quite frankly, as obligatory as superficial conversation topics are, I’ve never been a huge fan of them. Too much of those drain me out.
My name is Miko. I’m twenty-five, but heading towards six in a few months.
Okay, I’m kidding. I’m not here to provide dating website information. I want to write about the bad, ugly, or taboo parts about me today – so basically, like almost every other day, except for the times when I write my vignettes of my beautiful yet occasionally bittersweet experiences and / or memories with some people in my life.
I’ve been thinking of a burning question for the past week, which is: do we use our individual perceived inadequacies and insecurities (that we are all too familiar with) as a crutch, or an excuse, to avoid failure or attempts to change ourselves, partially out of fear and how much we care about others’ perception on us?
Take some time to read the question carefully, since there’s some sort of depth and layer to it. You’d have to examine and peel through it like an onion, with some potential heartache and sore eyes on the way if you’re taking a hard, honest stab at the question.
Throughout most of my life (or as far as I could remember), I never think that I’m good enough. I’ve always had the belief that if I were to accomplish certain tasks or goals, I’d be able to become a “better person”. When I finally reach and exceed all of my achievements, when that day finally fucking comes (about time), I will be able to rightfully claim what I deserve from all of my hard work.
First of all: what does being better even mean? There is no specific standard to determine whether or not someone is “good” or “bad”, despite having laws. Legislation is an unified pact imposed within society to ensure some sort of protection and equality for every citizen. It certainly discourages some from acting out of line, for fear of consequences, yet doesn’t completely eradicate crime. That being said, we swim in the dreaded gray area in most parts of our lives, so even if we were to follow certain virtues, we could still be labeled as an asshole in certain situations. Accept this if you have not done so yet.
To add on, how does one gauge what he / she…deserves? This is quite subjective. Does anyone actually deserve anything? Obviously, when the fruits of labor come into fruition, there is a sense of personal pride, but it still doesn’t equate to claiming one’s merit on anything. This shouldn’t be confused with transactional ownership though, when objects are obtained through monetary means.
Reaching a target, so to say, will somehow alleviate or eliminate my internal struggle of consistently feeling like I am lacking as a person in a general sense. This self inadequacy spirals and exacerbates when I compare myself to my peers and how they present their lives on social media, too. Yes, I am aware that people usually show off the good parts online, but repeating this fact to myself is probably as effective as extinguishing a forest fire with a single bucket of water. The reasoning behind it is because I am only presented with what others want me to see instead of their whole story. After all, who wants to show vulnerability to just anyone? That would be similar to giving every single person you know a knife and hoping that no one attacks you with it. What are the odds? Are you willing to play?
I only display vulnerability to those who I feel like I can trust. The word feel implies a level of uncertainty, because despite all the love and gratitude I have towards the closest people in my life at the moment, I am aware that our dynamics are susceptible to change. All good things come to an end; we’re just unaware of when we turn our pages. In other cases, I’m completely and utterly proven wrong by some who showed me through their actions that they didn’t value my trust that much and I got hurt. That is okay, too. Indifferent to whether or not I sound pathetic here, but there were more times than I’d like to count that I adamantly refused to let go until the last moment for some people. To add on to extra agony, I choke myself with hypothetical “what if” thoughts at times, too.
After some introspection, I’ve come to the realization that most of my objectives that I’ve set up for myself when I was younger were solely based on the opinions of others. Look how well that worked out for me, as I am a trail mix of problems, ranging from eating disorder and depression for starters.
I started really chasing what drives and interests me during my college days simply because it was too painful to follow through with the plans and expectations that my parents set up for me. I leaped into foreign territory for once, not because of some bravery or some sort of grandiose epiphany. I’ve had enough. I started to respect and recognize my potential capabilities and aptitude, instead of sticking through what was wanted of me. It took some extra time for me to muster the courage to voice out my opinions, wants, and needs to them. I’m definitely still working on this department. After all, who wants to let their loved ones down?
I have been, and perhaps I still do at times, drifting most of my life. I didn’t have much to worry about, I’ve always lived comfortably, and I had no idea what I wanted to do. There are so many criteria out there that it is actually more than acceptable to follow blindly. Sometimes people are lauded for sticking to the conventional and familiar ways, too. No one ever gets questioned for being typical.
It’s more than adequate to follow the norms if those are what you identify with. However, it’s not okay to consistently cower within the personalized prison you’ve singlehandedly built yourself just because you are comfortably uncomfortable in your current situation.
Stop lying to yourself that you need to accomplish or complete prerequisite tasks that are expected of you in order to be a better person and to dissipate personal inadequacies. How long are you going to feed yourself the excuse that you only deserve or only can do something once you complete a grocery list of personal breakthroughs? Surprise, it doesn’t fucking work that way. I’ve learned it the hard way, and I’m certain you’re somewhat aware of it deep down, too. You are not stupid; you are just scared.
Stop compensating and feeling like nothing but an useless fuck up if you are incapable of matching and completing everything other people say that you are required to do. You may be fine with it at this moment, but you will eventually snap one day. I have.
If staying in the same place is still garnering the same results, why are you still here?
It’s time to leave.