November is over, thank God.
It was a helluva month for me, and although I made it through, I still feel it. I feel the remnants of what November showed me, and what I learned about myself for the millionth time in my 27 years of life.
I am not superwoman.
Sometimes — most times — I choose to ignore this well-known fact and then act surprised when it hits me in the face. I am good at a whole bunch of stuff. My therapist (I LOVE her) reminded me of that when we went through the list of things I do at work.
“It’s not that bad,” I said, as I ran out of fingers to count on.
“Yeah, individually they’re all manageable. But when you put them all together, they’re more than your whole.”
So get me right together then. I glanced at her with the look she’s termed my “rebuttal” face. But this time, for the first time since I began seeing her, I did not have a rebuttal. It surprised me just as much as it surprised her.
Truth is, she’s right. I am the queen of taking on everything because I’m good at it, I truly believe nobody can do it like me, and at the bottom of it all, I am terrified of being bored. Boredom to me signifies that I am not doing enough, and after years of trying to prove my worth to family, friends, and men, not doing enough has gotten me the to the same place as doing too much has — in therapy. I would rather be super busy than have to talk to people, or make plans with people, or get to know people, because people scare me; planning and executing things does not.
That is, until I take on so much that opening my computer sends me into a panic attack.
So, what do you do then? What do you do when your whole way of living is one of the reasons you cannot sustain? What do you do when giving your all leaves nothing for you?
I have no idea. But I feel better being able to actually admit (because if you asked me 3 months ago I would’ve said my life was perfect) that I have some work to do.
I am relearning my body, my heart, my mind, the way my brain works. I am relearning how to say no, how to demand my worth, how to embrace my anger, and give my “I wish you would” face when folk say I am not doing enough.
I am learning myself all over again, and at 27 it seems like a daunting task, but hell, there are 75 year-olds who are still confused. Honestly, I change so much that learning myself is always going to be something that I have to do. I just have to not be afraid to actually do it.
Dear Black Girl, you don’t have to be superwoman to show how powerful you are.