“Get knocked down seven times, stand up eight.”
The statement rings in my ears as I hear the remarks and read what others write about me. How could this be true? How am I worthy of even this statement? How is my life a continuation of getting back up when being knocked down?
As you might be able to tell, I have been dealing with a bit of imposter syndrome. If you do not know what imposter syndrome is, it is a concept describing individuals who are marked by an inability to internalize their accomplishments and a persistent fear of being exposed as a “fraud”.
I stand before you in fear that somehow a grave mistake has been made about who I am. I’ve realized that I am a runner, but I have yet to realize that my story and my voice are worthy of being shared. Not only with my close community but with the masses. A lot of this came out after participating in the Runway Slam with Oiselle a few weeks ago.
An opportunity of a lifetime, yet struck with fear when I realized those who would be walking alongside me. Sally, the head bird and owner of Oiselle, made sure to tell us prior to the event that we were hand selected by the team. Our voice in our community and our willingness to share our stories have made us strong women. Our willingness to fight for what we believe in makes us change makers. And yet, this is when I started to question if I belonged in this group of amazing women.
I know that a lot of people look at me and see a confident young women, ready to take on the world head first and share the stories that go along with that. But what most of you do not notice is my fear of being elevated to a level that I do not deserve. You see, I am a average person. I have a full-time job, I live with roommates that I love, I volunteer with high school girls in my church, and I find joy in running. I’ve had a few unfortunate and crazy events happen in my life and they have shaped me into the person I am today. And 14 months ago a felt a pull on my heart to share those stories. So I started writing.
And through sharing I have found my voice and footing for what is going on in my life. From challenging training, handling someone leaving my life, a near death experience, and even struggling with my own identity. Keeping it real is just my thing. But then in August everything started to move very quickly. In the last four months I have gone from the average runner with a small blog to someone being recognized as a voice in the running community. And I am still trying to figure out how it happened.
Daily I am having to remind myself that I have been placed on this earth for a purpose. And currently that purpose is to share my story and do everything with great heart. If that means picking myself up after being knocked down, then so be it. God continues to grant me new days to sing His praise and live the life He has called me to, so I will keep walking this path. These last few months have been a whirlwind but I know that this is a good path to be on. Even if I am struggling with feeling like an imposter. I just have to remind myself each day that I belong, I am called, and I am right where I am supposed to be. I guess this just goes hand in hand with believing in who I am, right?
Until next time
-Be Fearless, Go Boldly