I have a problem. There is a core lie I have that nothing I ever do it good enough. I am an internal cringer. Everything I say and do is usually partnered with silent self-scrutiny. Like today, I finally received my third book in the mail and I barely looked at it. Seriously. I looked at the page in the back where I thank all the amazing people in my life, and then, I closed it and stopped looking.
It’s not a good book, I thought to myself. Nobody wants to read this. It’s too honest, too challenging, too preachy. I should have written another book, a better book. This is stupid. I’m going to take it offline as soon as I get home.
I thought all of these things as I am walking toward my house along the shore of the North China Sea with the box of books in my hand. As it happens, my wonderful new friend Tash was walking up the hill as I was walking down. She knew I wrote a book, and I told her she could read it. As she came toward me, it was as if I was playing hot potato. I almost threw the books at her.
“My books came!” She took them sweetly and, unknowingly, carried my shame object with her off up the hill. I felt better, maybe even a little giddy, until I thought through the fact that now she is going to read it. Tash is going to read my stupid, obnoxious, know-it-all book and hate it. I don’t want her to hate it because I want her to like me. Ugh!
Why do I do this to myself? (That’s a rhetorical question. No email answers/explanations, please. HA!)
It takes me time to get back around to the truth. My heart in writing is for good. I want to help people. When I wrote Mine, Yours & Ours I had connection in mind. I wanted to help others love well inside of adoption. I hoped that others can learn from my personal experience and professional knowledge. My heart was in the right place. I spent months writing and re-writing and editing and and and…
Why, then, do I need a pep talk to even look at it?
There are few things as powerful as shame. Love is one of those.
If love covers a multitude of sins, hopefully it covers the good tries as well. I’m sure it does. After just finishing Brene Brown’s The Gifts of Imperfection, I am choosing to let go of perfectionism and embrace who I am–just a girl trying her best to help others.
Do any of you ever feel this way? If you do, I strongly encourage you to pick up The Gifts of Imperfection and get cozy with your flawed, awesome self. It will be worth it!