Adding Up

Do you ever feel like you’re a disappointment to yourself? During the times where you can’t make things right, and the plans you’ve created for yourself are falling apart, do you feel like you just don’t make the cut? These are the times where nothing quite adds up. The times where no matter how hard you work, it doesn’t pay off. If you say you don’t feel disappointment during these times, or any times, then you probably don’t need to read any further.

But I feel like this all the time, and honestly, I think it’s normal. We’re not perfect, but we hold ourselves to standards of perfection that we will never be able to uphold. We believe we can be so much of one thing, we forget that there are other things we can be as well.

Right now, I’m falling victim to my own standards. I feel like I should be one place, but instead I’m here. I’m staring up at God, asking Him what I’m even doing anymore. What’s all of this? Shouldn’t I be better at this whole “human” thing by now? God why are you letting my heart be broken by my own insufficiencies? I’ve had my heart broken by other people, but nothing hurts more than breaking your own heart. Others can only hurt you so many times, but the biggest cause of heartache is often the person staring you back in the mirror. So many of us have let this happen. We can throw those who hurt us out of our lives, but can we ever get rid of ourselves?

Lately I’ve been killing myself over my plans… If you know me personally, you know that I’m a tad uptight. I like to know what is going on, when, where, why. I like details, and I like knowing them all. When I know whats going on, I’m a happy girl. And one thing I’m known for doing is planning and over-planning my future.

“I want to be at this school for this many years and get this degree and marry this person and have this many kids.”

For almost the entirety of high school, I thought I had my life under control. I thought that everything was going “according to plan.” But then God has made it abundantly clear to me that the only plan in action is His.

I went from knowing exactly where I was going to be, to barely knowing where I was.

God took my plans, my “perfect” plans, and poked holes in them. He took what I thought I knew and swirled it around until I knew nothing at all.

I’m going to be completely vulnerable and tell you that not knowing the plans makes me feel lost. I feel like I’ve gotten swallowed up by the world, forgotten. My internal compass is always spinning, never stopping, never telling me in what direction I’m headed. This scares me. I am terrified right now, terrified of life. Terrified that I’ll never figure out what I’m supposed to do. Where am I going? What dreams am I following? Will I be happy? Will I be enough?

I always thought that a plan would keep these questions at bay. I thought that boxing my life up would keep me from wondering what in the world am I doing. But it never worked out that way. Even when I had a plan, the questions still came. The questions were like the monsters I thought lived under my bed when I was little. They came at night, wiggled their way into my dreams, scared me awake. And to this day, it breaks me. It tears me apart. It keeps me up at night, it gives me headaches and stomach aches like you wouldn’t imagine. And I’m letting it.

God isn’t the one allowing us to break our hearts, we are. We give ourselves permission to be so disappointed in ourselves. God gives us grace, but for some reason, we can’t find it in our hearts to give it to ourselves. We withhold the grace that we literally can’t get rid of.

That’s so crazy to me, because aren’t we supposed to be our own biggest advocates? We’re supposed to cheer for ourselves, to believe in our hearts, and instead we’re letting the ideas of who we should be and what we should be doing drag us down.

Stop. It.

Just stop. No matter how messed up your life is, you’ve got to believe in yourself. Plans get messed up all the time. Things change almost constantly and I think we do ourselves a great dishonesty when we don’t allow ourselves to adjust to this change.

I don’t have all of the answers about how this whole thing works, but I do know that so many of us deal with it. College is a lot of knocking down and very little standing back up. I will be the first to tell you that college is not easy… but it’s a whole lot easier when you’re giving yourself the room to make mistakes and learn. We’re all going to screw up and we’re all going to have to change our ideas about what we think will happen. We can either let it tear us apart, or move on from it.

Please, move on. Cut the strings that are tying you down to all of your insecurities and worries. Let yourself be free of the weight, because you don’t need it on your shoulders. And if you can’t be your own biggest fan, no matter how hard you try, just know that there is a girl out there rooting for you and the rest of the world.

Always cheering you on,

ES

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