Somehow, I presumed the sending off of my memoirs would flush me of some of those pesky habits I carried from the convent so long ago. But it hasn’t. My sense of unworthiness prevails.
Not feeling okay.
Or good enough.
Like a sudden gathering of clouds, a darkening overshadows me when I least expect it.
I blame the convent, where I developed the habit of gazing inward each day, and examined my sinful self for every possible imperfection. It wasn’t enough to skim through the Ten Commandments in search of sins—impure thoughts or feelings of jealousy. I was also taught to look for slight infraction against the rules. Talking too much, running in the hallway, and gawking around during prayer were inadmissible faults, and needed to be publicly admitted on a daily basis. Like a monkey, diligently hunting for and picking at its body for fleas, I daily searched for—found—and developed a long list of—my daily failings. Had I not discovered at least a few faults, I would have been guilty of the more serious sin of pride.
Years later, my spirit has learned to expand and soften, but I still I work at accepting my imperfect and fault-ridden self.
It had not come easy. . .
this letting go,
Even today, I hesitate at being proud of,
or thinking myself good enough.
It has taken a lifetime.