Saturday, November 10, 2012

A MOTHER'S ADVICE



If anyone else is like me, they tend to be self-deprecating. In many ways, I feel better about myself the older I get, but in other ways I’m much harder on myself. I often put myself down for not being stronger. I tend to be harsher on myself than I think someone else will…I guess as a form of self-protection? If something is challenging for me, I automatically think that I must be weak. I tell myself that I shouldn’t be feeling so bad, that I’m being too dramatic and thinking things are worse than they really are. Everyone telling me this is not the case doesn’t reassure me. Maybe it’s a type of body dysmorphic disorder but of the mind. I don’t view myself the way others view me; I have a distorted view of myself. I also have a problem with feelings of guilt. Every time I see someone who is worse off than I am I cry. When I see natural disasters or the results of war, poverty and genocide I think, “Why are you feeling bad for yourself when many are so much worse off than you?” I feel guilty thinking my life is hard because I know what blessings I have.

If anyone else’s mom is like mine, they give the BEST advice! Her response to my putting myself down is this, “Someone else’s broken leg doesn’t make your stubbed toe hurt any less. This is your reality and it is very difficult for you. Don’t minimize what it is for you. It doesn’t make you weak to have challenges. Life is full of challenges. You figure out how to handle them and they make you grow. The best thing to do is to get moving and start doing something so your challenges don’t paralyze you.”

I try to remember how important perspective is. Each of us has our own lives that shape who we are and how we view the world. What is challenging to one may not be challenging to another. We cannot gauge how someone else's difficulty feels to them because we cannot know how they think and feel. We only understand how our difficulty feels to us and hopefully that gives us the insight to know how to help someone else. Even if what I’m going through may not be as difficult for someone else, it’s okay that it is difficult for me and it is great to realize the lessons I am learning. I have learned I don’t need to feel bad about myself because I find my life difficult, and I have also learned that, in spite of a multitude of blessings, it is okay to still feel hurt because of the nature of some of my challenges. I have realized that I can feel gratitude for my blessings even in the midst of a difficulty…struggling and gratitude can coexist. It is ironic how allowing myself to admit something is difficult actually makes my burdens feel lighter.

I always know who to call when I’m having a bad day. Aren’t moms the best!?!


3 comments:

  1. Great insights, Anni. A good reminder for all of us. And yes, your mom is the best!

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  2. Your writing is beautiful! We do have the best mom. I love the picture. Mom and Nami are both gorgeous!

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  3. I'm so lucky to share that mama--wise woman! I know this is so true, but it is soooo hard to remember and implement and even believe sometimes. Thanks for sharing!

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