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On Being Enough
by Tayler Simon
How many times have you looked at yourself in the mirror and thought
you weren’t enough?
I’m not skinny enough.
I’m not smart enough.
I’m not successful enough.
I’m not worthy enough.
Our news feeds are flooded with beauty and glam. We see those who brag and flaunt, but we also see the inspiration that we, too, can be this fit, smart, successful, or worthy. We just need to do this and that; buy this product; read that book, repeat these affirmations. These are the things we can do in our lives to make us finally feel like we are enough.
As a survivor of violence, these feelings are compounded. Like something was taken from us. Like we are broken and scrambling trying to find all the pieces to put back together. We just need the right tools to do so.
It is easy to fall for the trap that the secret to finding those tools lie with adding so much to our lives, that spending money will allow us to find the solution. We have been tricked into thinking self-care is about products. In a capitalist society, we are praised for working and grinding and giving all of ourselves in pursuit of being our best selves.
This is not to say that sometimes we don’t need a little help from therapy or peer support. This isn’t to say we don’t deserve nice things for ourselves.
The point is, we are enough. Who we are, right this second, is enough. We can grieve for who we were and strive for who we want to be, but who we are is also enough.
I was speaking with a survivor a few weeks ago. She asked me how long before she will be “better”, before she is normal again. I told her (because she was younger) that it is like the TikTok sound: “‘Let’s just skip to the good part’ ‘It doesn’t work like that’”.
Life doesn’t have a rewind, and it doesn’t have a time-skip. We only have right now, and if we are constantly living in the past or the future, our right now will never be enough.
I am not naive enough to think any survivor reading this will automatically just be ok being, and that be enough. It took me a long time to get to this point, and I struggle with it every day. It is a conversation with myself that I have to have every single time. When I wish I was more this or that, recognizing I can wish and work for these things, but remind myself that I am still enough.
I am strong enough to deserve celebration. I am soft enough to deserve kindness. I am human enough to deserve rest. As long as I have breath in my body, I am enough.
Let this serve as your reminder that you have everything you need inside of you.
You are enough.
Tayler Simon is the Education and Outreach Manager for The Hive Community Circle. She has been working in the interpersonal violence prevention and advocacy field for the past 8 years. Over the years, much of her work has had a focus on the intersection of anti-oppression and ending all forms of violence. In her spare time she runs a book blog called Liberation is Lit that focuses on reading as a form of liberation. You can find her on liberationislit.com.