Don’t let anyone else define “you”


You know yourself better than anyone.

Don’t let anyone define you, your limitations or your self-worth. There are plenty of people that want to shove their own opinions about how you should be living down your throat. Don’t let them do that.

Reach for things you may even think are beyond your fingertips, you may find that they are closer than you ever dreamed once you stretch a little. I never thought I could run.

Until I did it.

I never thought I could lose over 50 pounds.

Until I did it.

I never thought I could  write, deliver babies, raise kids, own my own home, balance a hectic life and be married for over 22 years.

Until I looked up and it turns out I can.

When I was in my twenties I had a good friend, let’s call her Val…(that’s not her real name)

Val and I worked together, had fun together, had our hair piled high and sprayed like everyone else at the time, after all it was the 80’s, we partied hard, we had fun. When I was with Val, we were the limit, we laughed harder than anyone I knew and had more fun and treated every Friday and Saturday like it was the last one we would ever have. I enjoyed myself, I felt pretty special to have a friend like Val.

Then one day, she uttered these words and for some reason I let them stick with me for years and determine how I felt about myself and how I thought the world felt about me…

During one of our weekend festivals of fun, she looked around the room and then at me and said in her best Debbie Downer voice, “Well Margie, let’s face it, we’re not the prettiest gals in the world. hahahaa…”

I felt like someone had slapped me in the face. I laughed of course but inside I couldn’t help but wonder why she had said such an odd thing. Sure, I knew that I wasn’t a beauty queen, but I had moved past that, I was into my twenties and I didn’t need approval or even to be compared to those “other women” out there. And yet here Iwas right in the middle of feeling bad about how I looked in comparison to someone else, or someone else’s idea of what attractive was instead of believing in my own version.

My own visualization of what I could, should, would…be was lost. Buried under those stupid words by Val.  

I carried that with me for years. I would meet new people and those words rang out in my ears EVERY time.
How stupid.

I don’t think that way anymore. Thank goodness, but I remember how that felt. How that felt to put myself down before I even tried. Before I even ventured out of the gate.  What a pity I put so much emphasis on someone elses opinion of- me.

It’s true, those words she said. “I’m not the prettiest gal in the world,” by any means.

But I am pretty funny. I’m pretty honest, a  pretty good parent and I’m pretty good at self improvements. So I would consider the trade for pretty on the outside for self esteem on the inside any day of the week.

Val knew not what she said. So I forgive her. She was young and thought it was funny to belittle herself and her clone. Somehow it made being single sting a bit less I guess by making someone else feel as bad as you do. But believe in yourself. Don’t let someone tell you what you are or what you aren’t.

Be your own support system, say positive things to yourself. Make yourself believe you are capable of anything.

I decided this week I want to learn to play the guitar.

I don’t even own one.

But I will find a way to make it happen. I am either good at it, or not. But I won’t know…

.. until I do it.


About margie rigney

I'm a woman with too much to say to keep it to myself. Stop by for a virtual coffee break with me and refill your cup. Life is too short to worry too much and take it too seriously. Sometimes you just gotta laugh, even when it hurts.

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