I’m driving to work after dropping by daughter off at school, and I am sobbing uncontrollably. I am so overwhelmed, exhausted, sad, lonely and stressed. And I cannot think of a single person I can call.
I can’t call anyone because I am a people-pleasing, type A over-achiever who has spent her life trying to appear perfect, strong, independent and therefore rarely lets anyone in. I am also rarely honest about how I really feel unless I am at a point of complete distress. I don’t want anyone to know that I am not coping, that I am not in control, that I am weak in any way.
I’m already late, because I’m always running late. I live in the opposite direction of my daughters school, and I drive backwards to get her there, and then battle terrible traffic for an hour and a half to get to the office. To say it’s stressful is an understatement. Sometimes I just want to get out of the car and walk away, anywhere, just to get out of there and that situation.
I’m already exhausted, because I’ve gotten up at 5:15am to get to a personal training session before my daughter and partner wake up, because I’ve got to get my ass into a size 10 right?
I’m already stressed, because there are 25 emails in my inbox all requiring immediate action, most being menial tasks that are time-consuming, unrewarding, low-value and yet still fall to me because I am not truly valued in my role, and despite asking, no one is going to help.
So, I Quit.
I Quit putting everyone else but me first.
I Quit trying so hard all the time to make other people happy, often at the expense of my own happiness or well-being.
I Quit doing things that aren’t appreciated or noticed - fresh towels don’t magic themselves there, work doesn’t do itself, leaves don't sweep themselves, cobwebs don't evaporate.
I Quit striving to appear perfect, like I’ve got it all together. I don’t.
I Quit starting every day panicked and stressed.
I Quit being exhausted from all this attempting to be perfect. I am not perfect, no one is.
I Quit caring so much about what I look like - I don’t need to live up to anyone’s image of an ideal woman but my own.
I Quit stressing about my cellulite, tuck shop arms or the size of my butt.
I Quit caring about the grubby marks on the walls or the piles of leaves to rake on the front lawn.
I Quit feeling guilty about wanting to eat pizza or maltesers every now and then, I like kale, but I like pizza too.
I Quit staying silent - when did help become a dirty word?
I Quit the negative self talk - I am worthwhile, lovable, and valuable.
I Quit doubting my abilities and talents - I couldn’t have got where I am without some measure of skill, value and talent.
I Quit believing that I am a failure because I am a divorced single mother - I am a survivor, strong and determined and that should be celebrated.
I Quit feeling like I am not a good mother - my daughter is kind, empathetic, funny and loving. I know I’ve played a part in that.
I Quit worrying that I am not worthy of being loved in the way I truly deserve - I am worthy of a big love, a deep love and a honest love.
I Quit feeling like I am not good enough - I am.
I Quit all these things and more.
What comes after quitting? I'm sure of this yet. But I do know that Quitting is the first step.