I was reflecting back on months of therapy work and one of my previous assignments from my therapist was to answer the question “who am I?”. This was not easy for me. I have always struggled with identifying myself. This was many months ago, but this is what I cam up with:
Who am I?
My first answer would probably be my name.
But, my name does not describe who I am on the inside.
I could tell you I am a mother, wife, a sister, friend and a daughter.
But those are my relationships.
I could describe myself as an introvert, quiet and very reserved.
But that is my personality.
I am organized and academically smart.
But those are my gifts and abilities.
I am a musician.
But that is my talent.
I could describe my appearance, the fact that I am fat and bulimic.
But that is who I am on the outside.
So many times I have believed what others say I am.
If I receive affirmation, then I feel worthwhile.
However, when I receive criticism, then I feel like a failure.
I have chosen to ride the roller coaster of emotions,
Leaving me feeling like nothing more than a burden.
I have tried to work harder to prove that I am worthwhile.
Yet every time I mess up or fail, I am reminded that I will never measure up.
I will never be pretty enough or talented enough.
I will never be skinny enough or do enough good things.
I will never be a good enough wife or mother or daughter.
I am nothing more than a fearful, broken heart hidden behind the mask of a skilled performer.
I am an undeserving, worthless fake who is used and dirty.
I am a liar and a cheater.
I am anything anyone wants me to be.
I bend and mould myself into whatever is needed.
If a friend is needed, then I am a friend.
If strength is needed, then I can be strong.
If happiness is needed, I can be the comic relief.
I can be whatever anyone needs me to be.
I am a person who lives to please others and make sure they are happy and taken care of while neglecting my own needs, because I don’t truly know who I am or what I really need.
I am unique and wonderfully made- a child of God.
Or so that’s what I’ve been told.
I am a survivor- for now.
I am in pain.
My mind is haunted with never ending thoughts.
I am not real.
I am “me”.
But “me” is an empty, hollow shell of a person.
I live and breathe; yet I am no one.
I am lonely and I am tired.
I am confused.
That is who I am.
This poem seems so dark and so sad. I am happy to say I have stepped out of that place, and into a place that I more free. Thanks to a wonderful therapist to guide me along the way and a family who has been patient and encouraging, I am starting to come out of this place and learn who I really am. It’s a wonderful, freeing and liberating feeling to finally know who I really am.~Lindsay