self doubt

The Woolly Mammoth at the Royal BC Museum, Vic...

The Woolly Mammoth at the Royal BC Museum, Victoria, British Columbia. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In 1992, I began my first teaching assignment with a seventh grade class at a junior high in Federal Way.  In third period, I taught identical twin sisters, Amy and Ashley.  One random morning, Ashley burst into tears.  I took her outside the classroom to find out what the matter was.

“My sister is prettier than me,” she sobbed.

I would like to remind you that the girls were IDENTICAL twins, but it obviously wasn’t about what Ashley looked like; it was about how she felt.

Perhaps self-doubt is an ancient strand of our DNA, instilled in us thousands upon thousands of years ago to keep us vigilant and wary, an instilled sense of uncertainty that forces us to second-guess ourselves less we become dinner for a saber-tooth tiger or woolly mammoth.  (Actually, I am pretty sure woolly mammoths were herbivores, so never mind about the mammoths.)

This caution makes us feel stupid when we are smart, weak when we are strong, alone when we are deeply loved, and sometimes self-doubt can force a pretty twelve-year-old girl to feel so ugly, it will bring her to tears.

Advertisements

One thought on “self doubt

  1. neighbor says:

    Kate, I think you are a great teacher. Really needed this one especially today. It is beautiful.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s