doubts, fears and insecurities. OH MY!

Lythem

I’ve been struggling lately. Self doubt, fears and layers of insecurities so deep and so varied they make my head spin.  Being a mother was not something I ever really thought about.  Wal and I had discussed it briefly, just to say I would like to stay home w/ the kid for the first couple of years.  The KID was a distant thing.  A future we were working toward.  When the future turned into now we did just as we ‘discussed’ and I quit work and became a stay at home mom.  To say that I struggled with this would be an understatement.  I’ve worked since I was 16. A part time job at a pharmacy during high school.  Shoe stores, donut shops, sewing factory.  I’ve waited tables, I’ve answered phones, I’ve worked w/  the elderly and the mentally ill.  My life did not lead me down a path where I could concentrate on my studies alone.  I have always worked.  My entire sense of self had been wrapped up in the type of employee I was.  Hard working, assertive, tactless (yes,tactLESS), reliable.  I have a degree in Psychology and I worked in my field.  I did not make a lot (any) money but it gave me a sense of accomplishment to help people.  People who are vulnerable and need someone to help them fight their corner.

I moved to the UK to be with Wal.  Good god in the morning I love that man and would move anywhere to be with him.  He’s my best friend, my worst critic and my biggest supporter.  He tells me like it is and doesn’t hold any punches, even when I ask him if an outfit makes me look fat!  So here I am with a child in a foreign country and no friends.  The first few months were tough.  I think I scared a couple of moms away by my eager neediness.  I finally found women I connected with and life was better.  Play dates, baby groups, mum chrimbo parties, babysitting circles so Wal and I could go out. I don’t think mothering has come naturally to me.  I was alone for too long.  Had only myself to think about.  I’m bossy- hooo lord jeebus, mary and jojoba am I BOSSY.  Poor Squidge has had to deal with my drill sargent ways followed by me careening into feelings of guilt. Guilt for being too tough, for shouting, for  not giving her enough attention, not allowing her to scream and be a kid.  Did I potty train to early- OMG she’s going to be psychologically damaged because of it.  Telling her to stop crying.  She’s only a kid they’re supposed to cry.  Lighten up woman!  I think she’s OK.  She appears to interact well with others. Loves nursery.  No complaints from them…yet.  Then I think, hell Ted Bundy fit in well. Did his mother potty train him too early too?

In the middle of all this I rediscovered my love for photography. I took a photography class in high school. I was the quiet mousy one that didn’t say much anything during the class.  Shy ooh,  god I was so shy in high school.  I would sign up for things then not turn up. they might actually want me to do something.  I didn’t take my photography any further- didn’t think I was good enough.  Who would want me to take their photograph.  Fast-forward a few yrs and I’m taking another photography course this time in college.  I loved it, always have.  I still didn’t think I could make a living at this but it was a fun thing to do.  Fast-forward again and I’m a SAHM w/ the cutest child EVER.  I pestered Wal until we get a DSLR so we could take photos of Squidge.  I remember how much I loved it.  How I’ve always, in my heart of hearts, wanted to be a photographer.  But being a photographer is like telling people you want to be a move star, nice dream kid now grow up.

I’m in a position where I can pursue my dream. Yet… I’m almost paralyzed with doubts and insecurities.  It’s like I’m 16 again in a classroom filled w/ the artsy kids and I’m the quiet preppy kid that doesn’t belong.  I want to run and hide.  Say oh never I’m in the wrong class.  I should be in room 302 and this is room 303.  Instead of being surrounded my the artsy kids I’m surrounded by other SAHM, all of whom think just because they take some cute pictures of their kids they too can be photographers.  Who’s to say that isn’t me.  Yah I know I take some nice pictures of Squidge, it would be hard not to! Worse than the SAHM’s are the ‘real’ photographers’. Can they tell I’m a fraud. A fake. AN INTERLOPER!!! I  need to RUN and HIDE.

Oh I don’t know this post is getting all muddled in my head.  I just wish I would tell these horrible doubting voicing in my head to SHUT THE F*%$ UP! Maybe I should take a page from Obama- YES WE I CAN!  Is that cheesy?  Maybe if I say that loud enough and long enough it will drown out the other voice.

me-3

11 Comments

  1. Insomniac Mummy
    October 1, 2009 /

    YES YOU CAN!

    You take brilliant pictures!

    🙂

  2. October 1, 2009 /

    Wow, I think you’re being really hard on yourself. Your photos are great, so much better than family snaps. Good luck with the photography. I know where to come when we need some decent pics x

  3. Mancais
    October 1, 2009 /

    Oi missus – YES YOU CAN!!
    You’re really very talented and I love your work. I wish I was even a fraction as talented.
    As for the parenting lark – I reckon you’ve done alright so far. I could tell you plenty of tales of poor parenting I’ve come across through work.
    Hang in there x

  4. October 2, 2009 /

    insecurities are the worst. I suffer so very much from them as well. we all need to believe in ourselves more.

    hugs!

  5. Rachel
    October 3, 2009 /

    Look kiddo…you got this far, the rest of the way can’t be much further! Keep your feet on the ground and keep reaching for the stars (to quote Kasey Kasem)

  6. Wendy
    October 5, 2009 /

    Dear Lindy,

    You are not a fake. You are not an interloper. You are a photographer. Don’t EVER let anyone tell you otherwise. I have known you for twenty-something years. You are an intelligent, vibrant, beautiful and talented woman. Don’t be afraid to show it! Don’t be afraid to “walk the walk.” So many times, we let our fears and insecurities hold us back and then we spend soooooo much time wondering if we could’ve, should’ve….. I will tell you the truth, you will always have a small place in your soul that will not be satisfied until you live your dream. Take it from someone who knows. At 39, I feel that only now am I living MY life to MY fullest. I’ve never been happier. Pursuing my dream of a law career and taking the jump into becoming a “runner” who actually competes in races (and now can kick some ass here and there) has been an amazing feeling. After spending so many years living in the shadows, afraid to take the leap and always making excuses……Jumping into that scary abyss of the unknown was one of the best things I’ve ever done. Keep on living your dreams and never look back and to all the naysayers of the world tell them this: “Kiss my Portagee ass!!!!!”

    You rock Lindy! Love you like a sis!

    Wendy

    • Lindy
      October 5, 2009 /

      *sniff* I think you rock too!!

  7. October 5, 2009 /

    You can SO do it! You take amazing photos!

  8. Rachel
    October 5, 2009 /

    I’m sorry you are struggling. Insecurities suck and they seem to come all at once. Fighting those stupid voices is a daily battle. Some days it’s easier but most days it seems easier to just give in.

    You have talent and with all your hard work and persistence you can do it!

    That beach photo is amazing.

  9. Liesl
    October 10, 2009 /

    We all have big-time doubts and insecurities. I don’t think you’d be human if you didn’t have them, and you’d definitely be boring if they weren’t there. So, yes, you can do it, and the only way to prove that is to go out and do it!

    (How’s that for cheesy rah-rah-g-get-’em speeches? lol Seriously, you do take beautiful pictures, and you have to work, so you might as well work doing something you love. Go on and go about the business of taking pictures. Have fun, and I’m wishing you lots of good luck and fun adventures 🙂

  10. Peggy
    October 13, 2009 /

    I have only discovered your website from the Great Toy Guide and I can’t believe I haven’t before!! You are very talented, your photos are far more than a good family photo. Go ahead, forget about the little reasons you might not make it and focus on why you WILL make it. We all have crashes of confidence and people who are not successful are either not trying or not learning from their errors. Do the opposite of both and you will be in the right direction!
    Your blog is fab, BTW, did you design it yourself? If so you are really creative!