This article happily appeared in my Inbox this morning. As I began to read it, I started to recall my own memories that shook my core and took away that self-assuredness I think we’re all born with. That innocent fearlessness that kids seem to have. Growing up with a disability, I think that fearlessness was taken away pretty early in my life. I remember people staring at me for as long as I can remember. I remember people imitating my walk as if I couldn’t see them doing it. I remember someone yelling out at me as I walked by them in high school to “eat a sandwich” because I was so skinny as a result of my MD. I remember when another girl in high school who had my last name found out we had that in common and she turned around, looked at me, and went “eww” in class. One incident that really stands out that actually wasn’t even related to my disability was in middle school. I was walking with some friends down to the gym and one of the older girls got mad at something my friend had said and since I was in her direct line of vision, she just came up to me and shoved me over. I fell back and onto the ground. It was a moment where I was literally shaken. I remember my neighbor in college calling me anorexic behind my back and purposely parking in the handicap spot she knew I used in front of our apartments just to be cruel. I remember all of the times I fell in high school and people would just walk around me. No one would look down or even ask if I was ok. Isn’t it funny how easy it is to remember such awful memories? How things that happened so long ago can stay so fresh in our minds…and so can the feelings associated with them.
It’s amazing how we are born with this fearlessness. This ability to want to take the world head on and the thought of not being good enough hasn’t even entered our minds. I unfortunately don’t even remember that time. I suppose most of us don’t. I think I’ve generally felt not good enough since I was about 2. But through all the negativity, all of the teasing, all of the ignorance that tries to break us down, we have to try and rise above it. To try and get back to that place we were at at a very young age. Where we didn’t tell ourselves we weren’t good enough because we didn’t even think that was a possibility. We have to tune out the noise created by those who try to make us feel like we’re not enough. We have to remember that we are enough, no matter what anyone says or does. The only person who has the power and the right to decide that is us.
And I’m here to tell you too…you ARE enough! In fact, you are more than enough. You are you and that’s all you need to be.