Every now and then I have a niggle of self-doubt, asking myself “am I good enough?” Growing up in mainstream school I was the only disabled pupil with a power chair and communication device. Then at special school in my cohort I was the only one with a speech impairment. I was often seen as the quiet one in a group, viewed as having nothing to say. This perception was quite wrong I always had a lot to say. I just couldn’t get it out quickly enough. The result was the conversation had moved on to new topics by the time I programmed my thoughts, so I didn’t bother most of the time.
I can’t always believe my success
Looking back now I realise I often perceived I wasn’t good enough. …. to contribute. ….or to keep up. So even now when I’ve proven myself over and again I still question myself. In my studies, and as a communication aid user, and in sport. I can’t always believe what has happened, all that has come my way, and so I still wonder if my achievements are real. If I’m a fraud and it will all be whipped away, if success and selection have been given to me by mistake.
Hard work pays off
In reality, I know I have worked hard throughout my life. Every day! I’ve put in the hours, I’ve worked when others took holidays. I devoted myself in uni to my studies and my sport, so I know my achievements are real. Getting a first and being selected to represent my nation at boccia both within the same few months is an achievement for anyone. Very few people get the opportunity to go to the Paralympics, and for me this is a dream come true, something I have planned and prepared for during most of my life.
I am good enough
I know I should be proud, and believe me I am! But in a moment of insecurity and feeling uncertain, I jotted down some things that make me who I am. Now when the negative voice in my head chimes in I have some techniques to quieten my thoughts around am I really good enough. And, then I think about the things that make me who I am, and I know I am good enough.
In the words of Piglet in Winnie the Pooh
“The things that make me different are the things that make me”.
This is my list