I can’t be her. Frankly, I’m tired of living in her shadow. I’m tired of being jealous of her. I wanted to make you care for me like you care for her, but I’m so done trying. I will be myself; I will not be a second-rate her. I will not try to make you love me.
Am I enough? I’ve always been seeking to answer this question. From my earliest teenage years, I compared myself to other girls and consequently struggled with jealousy. While other girls warbled away sweetly to great acclaim, I just about managed to croak out the high notes of the hymns in church. While other girls were tanned and sleek and beautiful, I struggled with flyaway hair and no sense of style. While other girls played with and cooed over little children, I looked at the children with fear, loathing, and dread. Even after the worst of my awkward teenage years were over, I struggled with feeling that I wasn’t pretty enough, wasn’t good enough, wasn’t talkative enough, wasn’t deep and philosophical enough, simply wasn’t lovable enough as I was.
Painfully aware of my inadequacies, I put up a façade as close to perfection as I could manage. I didn’t like to do anything I wasn’t good at. I tried to earn love, whether it was from my parents, from a guy, or from God. Even if I wasn’t as beautiful, good, or talented as other girls I knew, I hoped that someone could be persuaded to say, “You are enough.” Somehow, I never felt like I succeeded.
Finally, I gave up.
I am slowly coming to the place where I accept that for some people, I will never be enough. Finally, I admit that I’m really not perfect. I will never be as musical, as gorgeous, as witty as some people I know.
And that’s OK. (How freeing it is to say it!)
I am slowly coming to the place where I accept myself for who I am. I am realizing that I cannot earn love. I am realizing that God doesn’t compare me with anyone else.
He will take delight in you with gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears. He will rejoice over you with joyful songs. (Zeph 3:17)
And it’s a funny thing: as I become more accepting of myself, I notice that I’m becoming more accepting of others, too.
Instead of wasting time on comparisons and jealousies, I remind myself that I have an irreplaceable role to play, that I can touch somebody in a way that nobody else can. And I hold an irreplaceable place in God’s heart.
So do you.