As women, we innately want to nurture and to help. We long to be viewed as strong, but soft. As warriors, but still a “lady”. We want to be needed, but not walked all over. Society, history, environment, family, partners, and friends all play into our balancing act of how to be and do it all. We put so much expectation on ourselves to achieve near-impossible goals and it can leave our mind, body, and spirit depleted.
I have been battling the “Not Enough” woman that lives inside of me for quite some time now. And to be honest, she has been winning. From the outside, one would never guess that most days I feel like I am failing. At everything: work, parenting, marriage, friendship. It can start with one thing that makes me feel that way and it inevitably rolls into everything I see and feel around me. “I am not enough”. Those words echo in my brain so many times a day that I have long since lost count. Not good enough. Not attentive enough. Not beautiful enough. Not patient enough. Not kind enough. Not mindful enough. Not grateful enough. Not thin enough. Not healthy enough. Not trying hard enough. Not motivated enough. The list can go on for pages and pages if I let it, and sometimes, in the pages of my mind, I do let it.
What is Enough? Well per the fine folks of Merriam Webster Dictionary the definition of enough is “occurring in such quantity, quality, or scope as to fully meet demands, needs or expectations.
I hate that definition. It speaks to the impossibility of one woman, ever being ever to meet the demands, needs, or expectations upon them. The sample sentence might as well read “She was set up for failure by trying to believe she could ever be enough”. I mean seriously….. can one woman be “enough” by that definition?? Maybe somedays it should say, “It was enough that she tried her best”,
I recently reconnected with a friend, after quite a few months of all but avoiding friends, and friendships. I have gone through the pain of some separations and losses of friendships within the past year that have definitely left me trigger shy on making new ones, and reclusive on others. She came back in slowly, but her energy was strong, powerful and so very needed that I found myself missing it and reaching out all the more. Why I chose this time to “rekindle” this friendship, I don’t know. Maybe the universe gifted her to me with intention. Maybe my own intuition told me it was time. I don’t know. But I recently told her how thankful I was that she was back in my life, because her “warrior”, her strength, her courage was inspiring me. She replied to me with: “Me too! You make me want to be a better person. You are a softer, kinder soul than I and it’s something that I have had to work hard for, and it has always seemed so natural for you. I admire you for it.” So here we were it seems, both seeking something from the other that we feel we need in order to be “enough”. And then it hit me. None of us will ever be “enough” by our own standards and on our own. It is about those around us, and about surrounding ourselves with people that see the “enough” in each other. It takes a village and a lifetime of women to raise a woman. And to all of you who battle that “never enough” woman inside of you, here is my promise.
Dearest Never Enough Woman,
You. Are. Enough.
I. Am. Enough.
Together our lessons shared strengthen us so that when we need it most, we can be all that we need to be when the time comes.
We are all warriors. We are an army. No battle was ever truly won alone. I will fight by your side every single time the war comes for you.
Share your strengths, And your weakness.
Be kind to yourself.
Do what you can every day, even if it’s only something you feel is “small”. The smallest steps are sometimes the biggest in the whole of the picture.
You are beautiful. You have a unique light that will be a beacon to those that deserve you. Don’t let anyone tell you that you are not. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. If they don’t see it, move on. They are not your people. Come sit next to me.
You cannot do it all. And that is ok. I promise to be here to help when you need me.
Lean on me and let me lean on you.
You will never be enough for the wrong people. Don’t let them dim your light.
You will always be “enough” for those that matter.
You. Are. ENOUGH.
You. Are. ENOUGH.
You. Are. ALWAYS ENOUGH
And should you ever, even for a moment, doubt this, I will always be there to remind you.
Will all my love,
Thank you to my beautifully strong, warrior friend for inspiring me. She knows who she is.
Joan Poirier is an Empath, a goddess, a woman, a wife, a mother, a sister, a friend. She is you, and she is me. Just a real woman, embracing her age and her wisdom, and not afraid of opening the dam and making some waves during her short time on the wild ride of life. She is on an ever-growing quest to live better, do better, be better and taking all the lumps that go with it.