They say, “You’re not good enough.”
They say, “You’re not smart enough.”
They say, “Quit.”
They say, “What’s the point?”
They say, “If only you were…better. If only you were funnier. If only you were prettier.”
They say, “No one cares.”
They start off whispering little messages of doubt. They quiet for a bit and allow the negativity to marinate, to percolate on their acrimony. Then they start again, louder, full of malice and greed, seeking to pull out every ounce of self respect and esteem, pursuing to leave me buried in self-loathing and malevolence.
Then they scream, “Just run away. You will never be enough…”
I take a deep breath. I see myself in the mirror. The girl staring back at me is strong, smart, beautiful. She is fucking good enough.
I look around at my surroundings. I count my blessings. I reach out to my daughter and pull her into an embrace where she wraps her chubby arms around my neck and squeezes me until I can hardly breath. I listen to my son tell me joke after joke and relish in his sense of humor and the joy that he gets from making me laugh. I take the hand that my husband stretches out to me and wrap my fingers around his, holding on to the foundation that we’ve created. And I smile.
For a while, the voices will quiet.
They will return. They always do. But they won’t win. I won’t let them.
Because I am strong. I am smart. I am beautiful.