If you hold your breath, count to ten and cross all your fingers and toes, you might just be as lucky as me. You might get a moment of clarity like the one I got tonight.
This week has not be gentle. It’s not been kind. I was told I was a failure. I was told I was not to be trusted. I was told that I wasn’t capable. All of this by my boss. By the person that put me in the role I’m in today.
The day I heard that message, I was crushed. Devastated. It was the worst thing. It was my biggest fear. It was the exact thing I feared ever hearing.
I’ve spent the last year digging in my heels. Trying to apply my smarts and working harder than I’ve ever worked. And yet, no matter what I did, it just felt like failure.
I thought it was me. I thought I was crazy. And when my boss delivered the worst blow possible, I had a moment. An honest-to-God-moment where I thought I had failed. Where I thought I was failure. Where it was true.
I cried. I raged. I shoveled it down and tried to pretend it was hidden.
And then I let it bubble up. I let it hit me. I processed it. And it’s not true. When faced with the scrutiny of the morning after, it doesn’t hold up.
I went home to the most amazing partner who listed off my list of accomplishments, my list of degrees and the long line of companies he thought would kill for someone with my talent and drive.
I went to work and was surrounded by folks who didn’t share the belief of failure.
I went to happy hour with a bad ass friend who reminded me that I was bad ass too.
I had a few glasses of wine…
And I celebrated. Because this is the greatest gift anyone has ever given me. I probably won’t be grateful for long but as long as I can hold onto it I want to share it.
The worst thing. The worst thing I could imagine. The most horrible thing that I thought anyone would ever say or do happened.
FAILURE. I was labeled a failure. I failed. Me! That doesn’t happen. That can’t happen. I can’t. I won’t allow it. FAILURE.
But…. I can survive that. When the bottom drops out and your perfectly orchestrated world falls apart you get a moment of clarity.
First of all, I’m not a failure. This statement was more about him than me. And after I took a deep breath, I could see that.
Secondly, I survived it. I can survive this. This is the worst thing and I’m still breathing. Still laughing. Still full of gratitude. Still amazing.
Lastly, I will be stronger on the other end of this. Because this is honestly, some #firstworldwhitegirlproblems.
So next time you think the sky is falling. Next time you think everything is over. Take a moment to enjoy the free fall. Take a minute to revel in the minutes of utter fear. Because those moments, they’ll fly by and then you’ll be back to being awesome. You’ll be back to being fierce. You’ll be back to being the person people WISH they could be.
Failure ain’t got nothing on me. I see your failure and I’ll raise you one of the strongest
people woman you’ll ever meet. And I feel sorry for you because if this is what you think failure looks like, you’ll never know success.