The Curse of Superwoman by Cassie Hart

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{A note from Beth: from May through August 2015, I am featuring some delicious guest writers here on the blog as I recover from pregnancy and birth and adjust to our new family rhythms (find more details here).  Enjoy!}

I have struggled with many things in my life. I have struggled with depression, with suspected bi-polar, with self-harm, with recovering from a string of unwanted male attention in various horrible forms, with PTSD, with a lack of self-confidence, with motherhood, with balance, oh, so much with balance.

But more than anything else, I have struggled with being Superwoman.

It didn’t begin with being Superwoman of course. It began with being a Good Girl. With living up to expectations. With an uncanny awareness for the feelings of others and a desire to help. A crushing sense of responsibility. For everything. I don’t think it’s always a ‘girl’ thing, but I know more woman than not who feel this. Like they have so much to live up to. Like they must take care of things or the important stuff will fall through the cracks.

And so we do what needs to be done. And we put other peoples needs ahead of our own. And somewhere along the line, some of us get lost.

I got lost. I drowned in the needs of everyone else until it got to the point where I wasn’t sure what I was doing because it was expected of me, and what I was doing because it was the real me. Have you ever felt like that? Like you’re not even sure if you’re a real person anymore, that maybe you are only the sum of expectations placed upon you by others and yourself?

Well, that was how I felt. I was ‘kind’ and ‘creative’ and ‘generous’, I was ‘Superwoman’ and ‘amazing’ and ‘wonderful’. But inside, I felt like a doormat, like a slave, like there was nothing left of me, and I couldn’t even be sure if I was any of those things people thought of me because it was me, or just because that was what was expected. I was living from a place of imbalance, not from a place of love.

And not love from others. I am well loved by everyone around me. I am cherished. I am worried for. At some point all the expectations I felt placed on me were internalized. No longer driven by others, but driven by me, by this ridiculous image I felt I needed to live up to.

Superwoman.

But I’m not. I struggle. I breathe and bleed and cry. I laugh and smile and dream. I am human, and I AM amazing, and sometimes I do carry more than I have the strength for. And that is the wonderful thing about being human. We can overcome so much. But, it wasn’t until I realized that I wasn’t giving myself the same love that I gave to others, that I could really start to acknowledge that. I may not be Superwoman, but I am awesome, and I deserve love, deserve to be a priority, deserve to know myself and feel whole and like I belong in the world. Just like everyone else.

I’m not lost any more, at least, not entirely. I’m on a journey to rediscovering who I am. Creating my own labels, discarding the ones I had pinned on myself when they no longer apply. But more than anything, trying to make choices out of love – for others, yes, but for myself as well. Because when I make choices from a place of love, I am free.



Cassie Hart is a home-schooling mother to three beautiful girls, and wears far too many hats for her small wardrobe. She writes speculative fiction under the name J.C. Hart and her blog can be found here

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