I hate the word failure. It makes me cringe. I despise the way it makes me feel & I have enormous wars within myself about what it "makes me" when do [fail] in some way. Society even tries to make light of it when people make a funny mistake or do something simply stupid by saying "major fail" or the like.
I still hate the word.
A few years ago, I started to read the book Failing Forward by John Maxwell and yes: I failed to finish reading it. :-( But what I do remember about it was that people can choose to take failures & label themselves by them ("I am a failure.") OR see them as isolated moments & incidences from which to learn from & grow in.
I find myself very stubbornly still in the first camp, unfortunately. I tell myself that I can do better & will to better in the future.... then I screw up again somehow & my brain does some math: 1 failure + 1 failure + 1 failure = complete failure.
At that point, all I want to do is cry & be held & told that I'm not a failure. :-(
For some reason, this time in my life it seems so easy to get stuck into a hole of catch-up, failing, & burn-out. I really thought I was an organized person. I really thought that I was a good student. But now I'm so scared of not doing 'my best' like I was in cc & Bible college. I've never known how or ever let myself only give "just enough" for a passing grade. It's seriously messing with my head when a subject that would normally excite, engage, & enthrall my attention is stressing me out so much that I want to pull my hair out & quit something for the first time in my life!
The most ridiculous part of it all is that according to my known scores: I am passing.
It was drilled so deep into my brain & heart that "just passing" was completely unacceptable & just as bad as "failing." I don't know how to get this unrealistic (at this specific point in my life) expectation out of my thinking.
Perhaps it's something that I've never thought about praying & releasing to God because it was suppose to be "my work", "my effort", "my achievement." I guess I look back at all my educational pursuits & take all the credit (with the exceptions of when my dad insisted on editing my papers or doing my research). :-/ That's stupid. For all that "knowledge" I really don't use much of it. Whatever I "learned" was simply for finding favor with people that I felt, saw, or was told was important -family, teachers, friends... and somewhere in there I was "honoring God." I will say that I know my quiet times during Bible college are sweet, tender, & emotional memories ...that I find hard to tap into now. they are almost bittersweet. but i didn't learn how to relate with people. i armed myself with knowledge & scripture so much that i became unapproachable, self-righteous, hyper-judgmental, & full of self-pity (or loathing). i feel like i pleased my parents by getting 'their' degrees but failed them as a daughter by forcing their-hands in my desire to get married. i'm afraid to talk to them about certain things because i'm afraid they won't accept me or will fear for my sanity or salvation. i'm afraid to talk to my in-laws because i'm realizing how ungrateful & bitter i probably came across to them in my years of living under their roof on their charity. i am so afraid of opening up to someone new because they will see how much i don't pray or read the Bible any more or trust God & witness to others. i'm afraid of getting close to someone & then letting them down... just like with my siblings. one of them is battling depression now. :-( what do i have to offer anyone? I use to sing & dance. I use to create & plan. I use to explore & serve. I use to praise, worship, & have joy.