You’re Not an Incompetent, Inadequate Failure

This is what I had to tell myself over and over yesterday.

Ever have one of those days where it feels like you can’t get anything right?  Mondays naturally feel like that.

I felt very forgetful, dropping balls left and right.

I am pretty good at rolling with the punches and just allowing myself to laugh things off.  The negative chatter had not started in my head.  I just laughed things off until…..

I lost my homework.  Jeremy and I are starting the 30 hours of classes to foster/adopt.  More on this dream later and how it is starting to come true.  So these classes have dozens and dozens of pages of questions for  the application process.  In the 90’s there was no homework, classes etc so I am very happy that they started this for the protection of these vulnerable children.  The homework has taken several hours.   I am thankful that I had turned in the first half.  My second half- I only had a couple pages left before finishing it.

My only guess is that I left it on the bathroom counter after the class.

My first response is to let it slide.  No biggie, just ask for a new one and do it again.  But then the negative chatter comes.

  • “how can you lose this?”
  • “you suck at managing papers”
  • “details are not your thing”
  • “you should be more organized”
  • “think they are going to allow you to adopt if you can’t even keep track of the application”
Since I have been purposefully pursuing emotional growth I recognize when I am broading the negative mental train a lot sooner than I used to.  Sometimes it would be half hour to hours later that I recognize these lies that I am believing.
As these negative thoughts play on repeat,  I have to tell myself a different set of statements.  These are statements of truth and of love.  Truths that I believe God says about me:
  • “it is ok”
  • “you can get a new packet”
  • “you are a human who makes mistakes”
  • “you can’t be perfect nor should you try to be”
  • “you juggle so many things- it is normal that you would drop some things”
  • “Give yourself grace” (I try to give lots of grace to others but rarely give myself that same grace)
  • “you are still loved by God and your family and friends”
  • “these kids need a forever family so they can know everything will be ok- filling out this form is ABSOLUTELY worth the time and effort)
I wish I can say this inner turmoil/battle of negative thoughts ended after 10 minutes.  It did not.  I had to repeatedly go to God in prayer several times, over and over for the rest of the evening.  The negative thoughts would creep in uninvited.  I would have to ask Jesus to help me.  
I share this because I know I am not alone.  We all deal with feeling incompetent and inadequate.   You are not those things.  You are loved and pursued by God.  Jesus wants to have a personal relationship with you.  He wants to teach you what He believes about you.  He wants to help you write a better story than the one of defeat and a discouragement that you are currently living.
My Monday could have started with allowing this negative tape (if you grew up in the 80’s you know what a cassette tape is) to keep playing but I am instead going to find joy today and find ways to lift up others.  
2 things that got me giggling this morning:
  1. I imagined joking with the foster care director, “Could I get another packet?  Don’t worry I take care of kids better than I manage papers.”  I opted not really sending this. 😉
  2. Buddy (5year old son)  crawled into bed last night.  Minutes later my 7 year old daughter came too due to a scary dream.  I knew the bed of 4 would be too full for me so I decided to go sleep in my son’s bed.  This morning I asked, “Buddy did you have a bad dream last night?”  My son replied, “No, I just peed my bed.”  Guess I did not notice the damp sheets.  Up until that point I really enjoyed his comfy bed and struggling with his Toy Story blanket.  
Life is too short to stay negative so choosing to laugh.