Self Doubt's Cold & Choking Claws

The profundity of this week’s self doubt was a searing sunshine or maybe an avuncular avalanche --something horrendous and exquisitely paralyzing while also being full of wisdom. Drowning in honey-milk. Like the approaching wave that you understand will pummel you, disorient and grind you up, but which you know you must embrace. Which you know you must face and say, smilingly: bring it on, Oh dear One! Choke and stifle the breath right out of my solar plexus! Be merciless, and I won’t resist! In fact, I will welcome you, Oh great wave, for I am told that through you, I shall find a new expanse of self, a new breadth of comprehension and confidence!

What the hell?

Resurface! Gasp! Uncle Avalanche was loving afterall afterall. He led me! And Auntie Sunshine did not burn me! I am still standing. I am still whole. What saved me? You’ll never guess. Or maybe you will, if you read last week’s blog. From deep in the proverbial depths (of anything, really --just somewhere deep and dark), I glimpsed my thoughts: you can’t deliver because you’re incapable of sticking to a plan, and Successful People are planners. On top of that, you can’t plan if you don’t actually know what you’re doing. You’re just a big FAKE. (What happened to last week’s Trust Your Inner CEO, you ask? Holy Cow! She was no match for this week’s Imposter Syndrome!)

This art work was made by a guy named Pablo Stanley

And so It was Mother Calendar who saved me. She cradled me and whispered springtime birdsong in my ear. She called me Child and sang to light my path.

What path did she light? The one that showed me I could have TWO toggling timeframes. To make it make sense, you have to know the following context:

Would you believe that - In this madness that is school in Covid-Time - there is not a SINGLE neighborhood child whose last name begins with a letter that comes earlier in the alphabet than “M”, who also has chosen to attend in-person school in the same building as my daughter? That means NO CARPOOL. And just in case that wasn't bad enough, the in-person schedule contains weeks that start with A-days and those that start with B-days. So some Mondays I bring her to school at 7:45am, and other Mondays I bring her at 9:35! Some Mondays I pick her up at 11:20, and other Mondays I pick her up at 12:30 (Just imagine Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays --the combinations are head-popping!)

But Mother Calendar reminded me that this, too, I could plan for.

You should see the grand schedule I created. It is pure art. Color coded and set up to anticipate every kind of mishap and accommodate every flavor of domestic and business task you can imagine. My new thought? This schedule is BOSS! It’s clear and simple and harnesses any shred of rhythm that might exist in my life right now. And so...I’m going to do this, damnit.

I’m going to run the household, rear the children, AND make $100K from my own creations. Car accidents, ER visits, COVID-barriers, social media anxiety, NO MATTER.

Here are the solutions I learned from the heinousness of self-doubt this week:

Whether or not I have imposter syndrome about either my ability to plan or to execute or my qualifications to even teach this stuff, the facts are…

  1. My clients have given me lots of unbidden positive feedback, which I can actually choose to believe (since there’s no upside, it turns out, to NOT believe).

  2. I can rely on my calendar to help me relax, and I can survive if I mess it up.

  3. No matter what my childhood was like or any other complicating factor, the life I have right now is pretty amazing: my mom has offered to plan and make the dinners while I finish my nutrition certification; my husband has a good job and affords us our home and sustenance; my kids are healthy and good people; my community is thoughtful and generous and reflective. Remembering that when I’m at the bottom of the sea, under searing sunrays AND soul-crushing snow is an antidote…(I really wanted to add “So help me God” at the end of that, but, seemed like either blasphemy or appropriation, so, better to leave it off).

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