Britt van Schie
Being kind to yourself.
I'm glued to my phone. I'm refreshing my email for the one-hundredth time. The results should be in today. I haven't done anything that felt as good as this in a long time and I just hope that I can get the most out of this. In my head I already think about how I will organize the next round. What else can I do to challenge myself even further. I'm already opening the champagne in my head. Facebook reminds me that it's been exactly two years since I first posted a photo in a bikini. I remember how scary that was. Since that photo, I've decided to be a little kinder to myself and that has drastically changed my life. And of course, there is still a global pandemic and problems will always arise. But I have to say that being happy is a lot easier now that I no longer bully myself on a daily basis. Now that I tell myself that I am enough, that I do my best and that I can be proud of myself no matter what I achieve. So I share on Instagram that I've been kind to myself for two years now. While I'm posting it, I finally see the email arrive. It's short. Much shorter than the previous good news message. It feels like someone is punching me in the stomach. "Dear Britt. We would like to thank you very much for your participation. Unfortunately we have to inform you that you have not been admitted to the next round." This is the life I chose. I know I have to be resilient. Rejection is part of it. You get used to hearing "no" very often. You shake it off, tell yourself it's all right, and get on with your day. Because that's how it should be. After so much rejection, you teach yourself how to deal with it.
I get in the car to an appointment. Still with my head in the black letters from the email. "What if you never succeed? Will you ever really be happy?" I stare at the cappuccino I ordered but can't quite enjoy. "You have disappointed everyone. They expected so much from you and again you are not living up to it." I drive into the car wash, completely absorbed in my own rejection, a huge dent in a brand new BMW. After the panic and the settlement, I swallow my tears and get back in the car. "This was your only chance to get it. Now you'll have to accept that you'll never get it." I start up my laptop for a two-hour online workshop, which I want to convey with great enthusiasm and passion. "What will people think of you now? Haha, stupid Britt couldn't do it again." With a full head and the same cramp in my stomach I drop down on the couch at the end of the day. I want alcohol, but I have nothing left in my house. I want to hide under the covers and pretend I don't exist anymore. I want to completely turn back this day. I scroll past the photo I posted this morning. To my body, to the broad smile on my face. I decided two years ago to accept my body as it is. Not to make myself smaller than I am, just to fit into an unrealistic beauty standard.
But today my insecurity took over my mind and I believed every word it told me. On the second anniversary of my self-love, there was a lot of hate and reproach. And it completely ruined my day. Because some rejections hit harder than others. And feeling bad about it, not always being resilient and mourning a lost dream is also allowed. So I let myself cry out the insecurity. I take a moment to feel really shit about the situation. Then I look at myself in the mirror and decide to be kinder to myself again. Because some things are out of your control and you can't do everything perfectly. But all the pain hurts a little less if you at least dare to look at yourself and say: You are enough. I am super proud of you, of everything you do and I love you. So I wipe my tears and I'm a little kinder to myself. Because not everything will be easy, but I certainly won't make it harder for myself.