Confession: I never thought I was smart.
I really didn't. I suppose I never worried about the opposite. I just simply accepted the fact that I was 'average'. I believed this because my grades in school were average.
My parents never confirmed this and it wasn't something I really voiced concern over but I will venture that maybe the problem could have been that my parents didn't do anything to negate it.
I have wonderful parents who excelled in many ways but encouraging me in academics was not one of them.
So, after high school, I went to a state college while living at home and then dropped out. Not because I was failing. Because I was busy drinking and messing my life up otherwise. And then I got married. And had babies.
And then I went back to school. A class here and there at various community colleges. And I got great grades and great comments from my teachers and then finally, I realized that I had been believing a lie for all those years. I had been accepting something for myself which wasn't true. I had become okay with something, taken it as fact, and lo and behold it was false.
How much of what we believe about ourselves may not be true?
Had someone sat me down when I was younger and really encouraged me, maybe things would be different.
I don't at all regret the way my life has turned out. I know that God has had a plan for it. I wouldn't have done it any other way.
But I make sure to tell my kids all the time that they're smart. They are and they need to know it. And if something doesn't seem to come naturally for them, I help them to get the hang of it. I struggled the most with math when I was young. As an adult, I got an A in statistics. I think I just needed someone to explain it to me better when I was a child or take more time with me or encourage me not to give up. I still have that personality which is tempted to give up if something doesn't come easy. But I have an easier time fighting that temptation now. I have an inner drive because I believe in myself.
I want my kids to believe in themselves.