This is actually really challenging to write. It’s not that I don’t know what to say, but rather how to say it. College is starting this fall…and the journey to get there has been one of facing fear and learning, ever so slowly, to be trusting God.
Another voice, another choice
To listen to words somebody said
One too many doubts inside my head
Am I strong
Am I good enough
Do I belong
That I’ve said and done
Is it real
When I feel
I don’t measure up
Am I loved?
“Who I Am,” Blanca
Especially during junior and senior year, when all that seemed to be on our minds was standardized testing scores and college applications, I was seriously questioning my self worth- even the right to just exist. Was I strong enough? Good enough? Did I belong? The pervading feeling was that I don’t measure up. That really ate into me, the feeling that I wasn’t good enough. I was constantly setting expectations for myself that would prove to me that I belonged, that I was someone worthy of love, affection, and admiration. A lot of the time, expectations weren’t met, or a situation would have me feeling like I was drowing in my own un-capableness. It seemed that try as I might, I couldn’t stop comparing myself to others. They were always better, somehow. It all culminated and collapsed when I was rejected from my top three universities (UPenn, Columbia, and Barnard if you wanted to know). I know that people have worse struggles (including the lack of access to an education), but to me, it felt like everything just sort of fell apart. I moped for two straight weeks. I felt like absolute trash. And it HURT. A LOT. Because according to some people, I wasn’t good enough and I definitely didn’t measure up. I felt weak and defeated.
The other thing that I have struggled with constantly is who I want to be. I think that we all have a certain idea of what “success” is, and what it means to be “happy.” I want to be both of these things, and until recently, I have been trying to plan my life accordingly. I’ve been planning and planning to do everything “right” to have the “perfect” idea of “success” and “happiness.” But about a month ago, I came to the answer to the question what do you want, really? A month ago, I started this blog as a summer consolidation project. But as I poured more and more time into it, I realized that I really love this. I love writing. I love exploring and going on adventures. I want to be free, I want to have fun, I want to live my Paris dream. I want to be creative, I want to always have a good book in hand, I want to love others. I want to be content and grateful for my life. And I want to trust God completely in all my fears.
Trusting God has not been easy for me. I used to be very resistant to the idea of God because I was mad at him for the way I saw the world running. I didn’t understand, and I still don’t understand everything, nor do I agree with everything that the Bible has to say. But as I have started to fill my heart and my head with a steady stream of KLove and God’s word, trusting God has become a little easier.
When I lose my way,
And I forget my name
Remind me who I am
In the mirror all I see
Is who I don’t wanna be
Remind me who I am
In the loneliest places
When I can’t remember what grace is
Tell me, once again who I am to You, who I am to You
Tell me, lest I forget Who I am to You, that I belong to You
“Remind Me Who I Am,” Jason Gray
After all of this, I have come to understand that I don’t need self validation, or that other people need to recognize me for something great. It’s okay if I find my passion in something that for me is unconventional, which in this case is traveling, blogging and photography. At first I planned for these things to take the backseat in my life to an actual job…but now I plan to weigh them with equal importance, and someday, God-willing, make a career out of them.
I didn’t come to these conclusions on my own. There have been two very important people in my life who have walked by me as I muddled through my pre-concieved notions about God and religion and gradually began to piece together my own beliefs and become stronger. Last Sunday, I finally accepted that I have a passion for writing. The pastor was talking about how God gives us all different abilities and because God gives us these things, all are valid vocations. Today on KLove, the encouraging word of the day was:
For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him.
As I face the fear of the uncertainty of the future, and trust that God has a good and perfect plan, I know that I can walk without fear because God is on my side. I’m excited and thrilled to be going to BU in the fall, writing this blog, and learning and growing. Through all of this, I hope that my life will reflect God’s grace, love, and mercy.
That was really hard to write. But I hope that if you take anything away from that, you know that you are good enough and that God is for you, not against you.