Insecurity is something we all deal with. Through the good, the bad, and the ugly, it’s our little fear that we like to keep tucked away and hidden in that secret place in our mind while hoping like hell, no one uncovers it.
This topic came up last night in my church group and the question was asked “what was an insecurity you had and how did you over come it, thus bringing you closer to God”. Well, I raised my hand and told a story of one of my biggest insecurities and how I dealt with it, thus spurring some ladies in my group to tell me I should share the story here on my blog. That said (for my Flavour Ladies) it's the topic of today’s post and here it goes.
Several years ago, I worked at a place crawling with college graduates. It seemed like at the time, they all went to college, had been in sororities or fraternities, had degrees, etc…that is…except for little ol’ me. That was the hardest thing for me to swallow. I always tensed up when the topic of “what school did you graduate from”, came up and I would bow out and turn to go the other direction or shy away and never even enter the conversation. It was just my thing. I was embarrassed that I didn’t go to college and preferred everyone just assume I had. I was BIG TIME insecure. That is, until someone popped up in my work life and unbeknownst to him, he ended up helping me see things differently.
His name was Bill and he was a big wig consultant from New York. He had his MBA and who knows what else behind his name. Bill consulted for big companies like Carnival Cruise Lines to name one and came to our company to do the same. The thing was, since he needed to know all the in’s and out’s of our company, he went through each department and learned everything about how we worked. Since I helped train our Customer Service Department, I ended up having to train him in our department work flow. Want to talk about scared shitless…yep, that was the predicament I was in. But I put my big girl panties and did it. Needless to say we became fast friends although he was still intimidating as hell.
Bill knew I had a fear of public speaking and pressured me into joining Toastmasters which we held weekly meetings for at work. I reluctantly joined per his request and the first thing I had to do after just a few meetings was give my first Ice Breaker Speech. I had to talk about myself and opted to be honest and tell them about what made me the most insecure. For the first time in a long time, it actually worked out for me.
My speech was entitled “Sorority of Motherhood”. I don’t have a copy of it (it was that many years ago) but I can tell you that it was hard to get through when you put yourself out there for the world to hear, especially people you are intimidated by and talk about none other than your biggest insecurity. My saving grace was that Sammy(my husband) was there for moral support. In my speech I talked about how I never went to college but always wanted to go and that I had been insecure working amongst those who had gone. I spoke of wanting to join a sorority and I think that part hurt the most. So in my speech I told of how my life was it’s own sort of sorority. Not one from the college life but just life being a mom. I spoke of how instead of purchasing cases of beer like my friends were able to, I was purchasing cases of baby formula. Instead of joining study groups, I was in "Mommy and Me" groups. Instead of joining my beloved sorority even with all it’s drama, I had my “mommy’ friends and shared in all their marriage life drama’s. But after all was said and done, I looked at my life and saw that I did join my sorority after all. It wasn’t like I had envisioned, but I was in my own groups, doing the things that I was meant to do and in fact, pretty damn happy about the way my life turned out, college or not. So while my co- workers had their college degrees, well mine wasn’t a degree form school per se, but I sure as hell earned my degree in life and all that I'd endured with my girls and my husband. And that made me who I am and because of this, I am happy.
I remember seeing Bill in the audience with tears in his eyes. To say I was floored was understatement! I learned after the meeting that while I was giving my speech he took a look at his own life and realized how little he had. He was single with a dog and the thing I made him question the most was - “ What did he truly have?”. He had no family he’d created. and no kids of his own. AGAIN, this was a big wig and someone I looked up to and was intimidated by. I couldn’t even believe what I was hearing. Here I stood, a once young mom, uneducated, nothing to offer the world, afraid to speak in public, no titles after my name, had only ever traveled in Texas, and I had this New Yorker, Consultant extraordinaire questioning his life!?!?
It made me really look at myself and what I had and accomplished with my limited schooling, and though I didn’t realize at the time, it was the path God chose for me. He had me all figured out and I never had a reason to be insecure. The thought that comes to mind about the question asked last night on how it brought me closer to God, I think is simply this. It made me be honest with myself and LOVE who I am. I can’t change my past, but it’s what made me, ME! And instead of asking why, how come, what if…, embrace the the road you’re on because it is the one paved by Him. Besides, you never, ever know who is standing along the side of your road and watching you in awe! It may even be the person you least expected.