Comparisons will be the death of my self-worth.
"So, don't compare," you say.
"If you know how to do that, please teach me how," would be my response.
I have this strange binary that exists when I think about myself - especially my physical self.
On one hand, I can admit that I am not hideously unfortunate in my appearance. On the other, I have trouble acknowledging anything good and know full well I don't sit anywhere near the terribly attractive end of the scale. I can stand in front of a mirror and be sort of ok with what I see (if I don't look too closely or too long), but put me beside other people and the bile and vitriol I immediately douse my self-assessment in is astounding.
The same thing happens when I think about love. There is a part of me that refuses to give up hope that there is a chance someone out there could love me... whilst another voice is also constantly telling me that history has proven that no one ever could.
And yes, this is a very me-centric circle of torment as well. I am fully aware of that. I see the beauty or appeal in the people around me (who are not all model perfect or with the soulmate of their dreams, I promise). I firmly believe that they are attractive and wonderful... whether they have found their own inner acceptance of it or not. So, I do try to bite my tongue when someone tries to tell me that they see something in me that I don't.
The problem is, I can't get past what I have become in relation to what I always thought I would be. As easy as it is to compare myself with the people around me and come up lacking, it is the comparison with the self that I am never going to become that fuels and worries me more. The effortlessly successful woman with the amazing guy, career, and twenty-five inch waist is never going to be me. And yet, I compare myself to her constantly.
In those comparisons, I am easily hideous. I am disgusting and barely worthy of pity. My inability to make myself better, thinner, more successful... anything other than what I am... is frustrating and demoralising. It is only that small contradictory presence (it isn't really a voice, as it doesn't speak up or make itself known very often... but somehow, I feel it is there) that keeps me able to walk out of the door when I have to. Or allows me to hold my head up when I am in public. And I am terrified of the day that that presence is no longer there.