Thursday, April 25, 2013

Vexed

 
  vexed
/vekst/
Annoyed, frustrated, or worried
 
The same grandmother that bequeathed unto me her ancient words gave me something else.  Doubt.  She was a very critical person.  She didn't like me much and took every opportunity she could to put me in my place. 
 
I remember making Raggedy Ann and Andy dolls when I was a teen.  The little outfits were so cute and I was quite proud of how they turned out.  I displayed them for her appraisal as she had a way with a needle.  Her response, "I will wait for the finished product."  Really?  She never saw the final product as I no longer cared for her opinion.  I brushed her dirt from my shoes and walked away.
 
Years later I realized that I hadn't truly walked away.  I doubted myself. I knew I wasn't good enough.  I would never be good enough.  I wrote but didn't share. I was frustrated because I wanted to grow as a writer and to do that you have to share. I couldn't.  I was frozen.
 
Last year I threw caution to the wind.  I took classes and started to feel less anxiety about sharing.  It was during one of these classes that I realized I had a 'Honey jar stuck on my nose'.  
 
It was from a song by Kenny Loggins.  Return to Pooh Corner.
One of the lyrics goes like this: 
Whinnie the Pooh doesn't know what to do.
Got a honey jar stuck on his nose.
 
The light went on for me.  For years I had been carrying around my grandmother Honey's gift of self doubt. 
 
When I found a little figurine of an 'unstuck' Pooh I put it on my desk to help remind me: "It is okay to doubt, that's normal. But if you are feeling stuck get the freaking pot of your nose and move forward. 


 
 

26 comments:

  1. Really good post. I think self doubt can be used to ask questions of ourselves, to check in and see if we really want something, etc. But, if we stay in that questioning stage too long, we freeze and then never do anything, never move forward.

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    1. Very true and forward momentum is always good.

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  2. Great advice. It does feel like we spend our entire adulthood getting over our childhood, doesn't it?

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    1. Yes it does and I actually had a good childhood. Can't imagine what it would be like for those who had a rough go.

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  3. Sorry to hear that your grandmother wasn't encouraging but it's great that you're now moving forward.

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    1. It makes me wonder who was mean to her to make her so critical. Guess we'll never know.

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  4. What a cute figurine! That's great that it reminds you to put aside your self-doubt and move forward.

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    1. It is good to have a reminder. There are times when it takes me a minute to realize I've got one stuck on my nose.

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  5. I love this post!!!
    It's sad when the people we look up to push their insecurities on us. I'm so proud of you for owning it and conquering it!

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  6. Brilliant! You always have the best sayings that just resonate with me. I don't think that you should doubt yourself as you always have this way of cheering me up and making me feel better with whatever you write on your blog, so you are an excellent story teller. You make everything interesting and entertaining. Thank you for that.

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    1. Awe, I am glad that I cheer you up.

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  7. What an inspiring post! Not only a well-told tale, but a reminder that self-doubt can be a silent and destructive adversary. We can't let others, even those we love, have that kind of control over us. Well done!

    VR Barkowski

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    1. Thank you. This means a lot to me.

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  8. A wonderful post. Love that analogy! I got my self doubt from my family too, but I've gotten better at getting myself unstuck.

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  9. Great post I agree with all the other comments, very honest.
    #atozchallenge
    maggie at expat brazil

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  10. This is a great, powerful post. I love the Pooh figurine and what it represents. So glad you are sharing now! And I just realized I never actually hit the follow button on your blog before (until now). Hard to keep track these days!

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    1. Thanks. It is hard to keep track but it sure has been a fun month.

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  11. Self doubt is my nemesis... well, one of them. :/
    Wonderful post!

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    1. It's the getting back up that counts. No matter how many nemesisisisis (what the heck would be the plural? ;)

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  12. Suffered the same stuff, from my mother! I realised at 14 that I would never be good enough for her, so stopped trying and did my own thing-I thought. But the child inside me is still waiting for mummy to be proud.... She won't. So getting good reviews for my book is having to substitute!

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    1. I think that in the end those people who withhold showing their pride are the ones who miss out in life. It is a hurtful thing to feel that loss but you haven't let it cripple you. I applauded your courage.

      I have your book and in May I'm going to start reading again. I do not even want to look and see what I've spent this month. Amazon is loving me.

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  13. Jai, This post shows just how hard it can be to disassociate ourselves from people who criticize our every effort. And how tenacious that nasty inner voice we've learned can be. And then, voila! That thread snaps, and we move on, hopefully sooner than later. How I would treasure that Pooh Bear with NO honey pot on his nose!

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    1. Awe, you are so sweet and ever the poet. Thank you.

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