From Time to Time

The feeling of inadequacy has been a reoccurring theme in my life.

It digs its nails into my skin until it draws blood. It haunts me at night, whispering mindless nonsense into my ears. It crawls into bed with me and makes itself comfortable within my bones. It buries its head in my bosom and asks for one more bedtime story. It wakes me in the middle of the night, shaking me awake, leaving me restless and worn out.

The constant feeling of never being enough taps on my window sills like rain in the middle of a storm. It becomes routine. I now live in a constant state of questioning whether I’m doing the right thing or not, a constant state of wondering if I’m a failure, if I’m even worth anyone’s time.

Every critique of my character becomes categorized in a library of passing comments I’ve created inside my mind.

Every mistake I’ve made neatly piles up in the corner of my room, filling up the walls and towering over me as I sleep. I am only awoken by the crumbling reminders that fell on top of me in the middle of the night.

I lay awake at night, staring at the ceiling, until my eyes adjust to the darkness and I see the shadows of my insecurities drifting about my room, dancing between the piles of my mistakes, swaying to the sound of the tapping on the windows, steadily moving to the beat of my weary heart.

It’s a heavy and draining life to live. It’s exhausting and after a while, I lose little bits of hope as it falls off of me like the deteriorating paint job on the walls of abandoned houses.

But from time to time, I will take up the paint brush and paint over the broken pieces. I’ll put on several coats until you can no longer see the concrete.

From time to time, I’ll wake up to the dancing of my mistakes and insecurities and I’ll learn to lead. I’ll take them all by the waist and create my own beat.

From time to time, I’ll clear my room, I’ll dust the corners and I’ll neatly categorize all of my faults into shelves of past tense.

From time to time, I refuse to tell them another bedtime story, I bandage my wounds, and I hold them close to my heart and soothe them to sleep.

From time to time, I become better than my own thoughts. I tell myself that I will not take anymore of this and I learn to smooth out the wrinkles of my own heart.

From time to time, I use these as reminders that I’m still worth living.

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You Could Do Better.

I am made up of failures,
Mistakes,
Faults,
and flaws.

I am built on disapproval,
judgement,
fear,
and inadequacies.

I have lived my life on cracked foundation,
made from melting ice sheets,
I have built my life on rotting wood,
on fragile china.

I have bled on pages and pages of
self-deprecating moments,
over exaggerated comments,
and silent disapprovals.

I remain bleeding,
as I slowly break my bones
Hoping that I am bent into the shapes
Everyone else approves of.

I have erased myself from mirrors,
Painted pictures of nonsensical images,
of things people approve of.

I can’t remember what I used to look like.
I trace the outlines of my being
and it feels foreign to me.

I sold myself to the lowest bidder.
I used people’s approval as currency
In hopes to buy myself back.
But nothing I do seems to amount to the cost
Of a real human soul.

So I exist,
In my own emptiness,
I hear the hollowness,
Echoing sounds of “you could do better.”