Daddy issues. Mommy issues. Color issues. Self-Image issues. Body image issues. Inferiority complexes. All of these things spew out of our hearts with disdain for others, when in reality we are jealous and envious of what they may have. I used to see people with their parents and hate the way they took them for granted. I would think, “If that was my mom, I would…” or “If that was my dad, I would…” I hated myself for not having those relationships, and I disliked others who did not understand how great they had it. There are many people who have Daddy Issues, a lot of people who have Mommy Issues, and then the smaller group of us who have both. The concept of being parentless is so painful and exclusionary at times. You feel that you do not have an anchor or a home base, because you are not connected to at least one of the people who brought you into this world.
I pitied myself and self-loathed for being a sort of orphan and wore my wounds externally. I constantly poured salt into my own wounds and made sure that my pain was visible. I carried myself as a victim of circumstance and clung to the concept of being different for all of the wrong reasons. All of this boiled down to being jealous and envious of people for reasons they could not control.
Rehashing this sounds so silly, but as a child that longed for connection, it was my reality. Although I did not battle long with my color issues because I went to a HBCU where I was surrounded by multicultural and multicolored beauty, I did look in the mirror and tear myself apart. I longed for a sense of perfection that made me say, “You are not pretty enough,” “You are not tall enough,” “You are not short enough,” “You are not skinny enough,” “You are not thick enough,” “Your hair is too short,” “Your face is too round,” and it played out in times of failure as if any of those things were connected to my outcomes. I look back now and long for my college physique, but at that time I felt that certain aspects of me kept me from achieving my goals.
I am not sure where my epiphany came, but I remember getting into a friend’s car my Sophomore year and she said that I looked different, prettier, happier even. My inner self had changed and I had accepted me for who I was and that allowed my inner beauty to enhance my outer beauty. Prior to this moment, I had failed to realize that my self-doubt and criticism of irrelevant things were the only thing keeping me from achieving my goals. I had nothing to lose, but my personal, self-imposed chains. The freedom that came with acceptance allowed me to change my energy and attract light with light. I no longer yearned for what I did not have, but I highlighted my strengths and let them overshadow my weaknesses.
Life is a learning process and it takes time to become the best us. There is always a better version of us waiting to be tapped into. The depth and complexity of who I longed to be was tied to many things, but released by the power of love. I had to love myself enough to know that I was more than enough today, and will be more than enough tomorrow. I appreciate my experiences more, because I am able to connect with those who may be going through a similar situation. I can now give hope to those who may feel that the lack of something is a stumbling block, when in reality it can be used as a stepping stone.
Jealousy and envy is more than just wanting someones lifestyle or material items, it can go deeper than that. The desire to have what someone else has or had will not bring those things to you, but accepting your circumstance will allow those voids to be filled with the things that you need.
You will not get what you want, but you will get what you give. Be you. Do you. Tell your own story. On your own terms.