Remember how I said I put down all the self-criticism and worry and fear during my race on Sunday? Well, the thing that I didn't tell you yesterday is that it's pretty easy to pick it all back up again. I went to the Up & Running forums and saw that everyone else had run their race faster than me. Sure, someone has to be last, but I didn't want it to be me. "Never Good Enough" is so much a part of me that I can't seem to let go of it for long. It's like a Velcro boomerang, always coming back and sticking to me again.
There are a lot of reasons this could be. I could blame my parents' high expectations for me. I could blame my husband, who has a tendency to be critical of himself and others and has said some unintentionally (I hope) cruel things to me over our many years together. I could blame the girl at the race yesterday who handed me a large men's t-shirt and looked doubtful when I said I wanted a women's sized shirt, which I could see right behind her. I really think that this feeling is part of the human condition, and I may be a little more prone to it than others, or I just don't know what other people are thinking all of the time and unfortunately, it's hard to escape my own thoughts. I also feel like other people expect it from me, that they are silently agreeing with me even as they say, "You shouldn't be so hard on yourself."
One thing, though, is that I am really tired of it. I am almost 41 years old and I don't feel like I've ever stopped wishing I could change almost everything about me. Every race I do is a letdown because I should have done better. Every time I weigh myself the number on the scale is too high. All my attempts to "fix" myself are wearing me out. But short of having a stroke, I'm not sure how to make that nagging voice in my head shut up.