Am I Good Enough?

458 days of loving more, 29 days of year two!

Here’s the thing.
There is no sugar coating ahead.
I don’t sugar coat, it just isn’t how I roll (except of course if we are talking about sugar cookies, that is an entirely different story.)

I want to write tonight.
I need to write.
I have wanted to write for the last 10 days actually.
I have needed to write for the last 10 days actually.
Based on the lack of a new post, I think you all know that despite my desire and desperate need to write, I haven’t.

This is the fifth document I have opened tonight.
This is the fifth time I have tried to write something.
Every time I start, I try to write something positive from the past ten days. I try to write something inspiring or on “topic.” And every time I come back to the same subject, one that I am so very afraid to share.

And there you go. It happened again. I write that I am afraid to write what is on my mind and I freeze and start to think “sh*t there you go again, writing about that boring downer of a topic that will turn everyone off.”

You know what, though, I need to write about what is on my mind because writing about it will set it free, it will set me free, it will allow me to start writing again which I so very much need. So here you go. No sugar coating. Just some honest to goodness raw emotions, hopefully with a positive spin at the end because that is why I like to write. Writing brings me clarity and oh my gosh do I need a little clarity right now in my life. Just a little. Anywho, I digress. I avoid. I need to just do it. Here goes.

The Orange Rhino is having a wicked hard time. There, I said it.

Last week’s knockdown knocked me down harder than I thought. It really rocked me to my core. I said that I let go and moved on – and I did, kind of. I did better letting go than I would have a year ago, but what I let go of was the singular punch, the action. I didn’t let go of the symbolism of the punch. The truth is, that punch made my one current struggle amplified one thousand times. Wait, one thousand times isn’t even enough. A google times.

My struggle right now, all a result of the major stressors going on, is that I just don’t feel good enough.

I don’t feel like a good enough wife; if I were, I wouldn’t be dealing with a marriage boulder, right?

I don’t feel like a good enough mom; if I were, my sons wouldn’t be struggling as much, right?

I don’t feel like a good enough me; if I were, I wouldn’t be as struggling as much, right?

And that is just top-line. I could easily delve into a zillion other examples of how inadequate I feel as in the worlds of me-hood, mommyhood, and marriagehood but they would all bring me back to the same point that right now, the big stressors in my life are making me feel not good enough across the board.

And let me tell you, it is a sucky feeling. A really sucky feeling. There hasn’t been a night in the last two weeks that I haven’t gone to bed crying because my mind wanders and starts poking at my big stressors and how I can make them better, and instead of getting a solution, just ends up back at the same conclusion: I am not good enough. And going to bed upset and crying? Well it has led to insomnia, big time. And that too, is a really sucky feeling because I am wiped and cranky all the time.

So there you have it. The Orange Rhino has been feeling really sucky. Do I feel sucky all the time? No. Do not fear! I still am having good moments, even great ones,

Like today when I got my almost two year old up from his nap and he just said “mommy, mommy, mommy” over and over again as he put his head on my shoulder and rubbed his fat little fingers on the collar of my shirt.

Like today when my three year old jumped out of his bed at six a.m. and screamed “mommy I slept commando, see?!”

Like today when my six year old said to me at our pizza date “Mommy this is best table because I have the best view. (Oh, of what I asked?) Of you of course.”

And like yesterday when my son brought home his mother’s day card and this is what it said:

 Do you know what that note did? What that thin, floppy, piece of pink paper did? It smacked me on the face so hard that I got knocked down again.


Yes. I got punched in the gut yesterday, but in a really good, way. That beautiful card made me realize that my son doesn’t see all the things I think I am doing wrong – he just sees all that I am doing right, he just sees that I don’t yell, that we do nosies at nighttime, that we have fun together. He just sees that I am more than good enough. He just sees that I love him and what more could I want?

This past year of my Orange Rhino Challenge has been about learning to yell less and love more. When I write love more I always talk about loving my kids more. But tonight, as I sit here and write, and think about how my five year old “Gets it” and focuses on the positives, I can’t help but to be knocked down by a thought,

I think it is time I start loving myself more too.

Yes, it is most definitely the time to start loving myself more.
Yes, it is most definitely the time to start thinking like my 5 year old more often and see all the good that does exist.
Yes, it is most definitely time to let of go of this not “good enough” thought.

While partially warranted under the circumstances, this not loving myself enough, this not thinking I am good enough, it just has got to go.  It is physically exhausting, emotionally draining, and simply stated, a real pain the tuckus. And furthermore, it puts a real cramp on my “not yelling” style. I know I will not press save on this post and instantly be filled with a sense of “I am good enough.” I know I might not feel good enough in a week, or a month. But I also know that now I am aware of how very much I want to change, of how very much I want to love myself more, and I do believe that that will push me forward.

Here are my other thoughts on just being Good Enough “An Ode to the Moms I Will Never Be.” 


When I started writing tonight, I felt overwhelmed and scared and as a result, didn’t want to write, couldn’t write. Now that I have finally gotten something written, no matter how good it is or isn’t, I feel such a huge sense of relief that I did it, that I tore the band-aid off and finally wrote something. These feelings? They totally apply to the challenge. I felt the same way when I just jumped in and started the Challenge to yell less. Just sayin’…just sayin’ just do it and just sayin’…you can do it!

Is there more I want to say in this post? Yes. But I will save it for another time. This post needs to be good enough as is! Ha! 

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11 thoughts on “Am I Good Enough?

  1. So brave. Thanks, it makes the rest of us, who also feel this way regularly, feel so much better.

    I’ve been trying something I read in a book about the power of the subconscious mind. I’ve been saying sort of affirmations every night, as I fall asleep (supposedly the best time for your subconscious mind to pick them up) about myself and my son and our life. Things like “Matthew and I are happy and healthy, physically, mentally, and emotionally. We’re well-rested and energetic, yet relaxed, calm and at peace. We’re both full of love and compassion for ourselves and each other, and this attracting people into our lives who are also compassionate and loving and just the right people we need in our lives, etc.” I really feel like my mood has improved tremendously since I started doing this and, so, of course, Matthew has been happier too…

  2. Your post echoes exactly my experience. This major knockdown happened for me over 6 weeks ago. It affects many aspects of mine and my children’s lives. It was an attack on me and my family from what we thought was a source if support. While trying to grow strength and looking for the bright side if things, often it has paralyzed me. It has torn open my own feelings if insecurity, which is so toxic to my efforts to improve my own reactions. I want simply to be good enough, but often I feel so inadequate. Each day is a new start, but that’s exactly what jeeps in happening. I can’t make it one day without yelling. It is so frustrating, because it does trickle into every facet of our lives.

  3. Hi, we are with you!!!
    Could there be an external cause for your feelings–hormonal changes, low iron, pain or illness? Or is there some unresolved situation that is in the back of your mind, dragging you down?? Sending you a big hug and hope that this stage passes soon.

  4. I think we all have those same “not good enough feelings” ( I had one of those moments today) but what continues to amaze me is your honesty, your strength and your ability to just put it out there for all of us to see. That is just so darn brave!! You have 4 beautiful boys that love you and an an incredible work of love ( this website and blog) that you started. I sure think that is not only ” good enough” but an inspiration to us all. Happy Mother’s Day Orange Rhino and to all the mommies out there:)

  5. Sometimes you freak me out orange rhino because it is so strange that you have feelings and go through things that seem identical to what I am going through at the exact same time. Something happened to me this week that made me feel like garbage. It made me feel like I cannot do anything right and all my hard work, late nights and ferocious deire to accomplish things is all for nought because I am too useless to do anything right. It is hard to keep trying when you feel like things are out of control. Thank you for reminding me I am human and it is ok to not be perfect. Thank you for reminding me to take care of me and mostly thank you for reminding me to keep trying.

  6. Yes. It is most certainly time to love yourself more. Forgive yourself more. Be more gentle with yourself. CELEBRATE yourself. You have accomplished some AMAZING things as a mom, as a person, and as a mentor. You have overcome large obstacles and you will overcome more! And you will continue to inspire others to do the same. You will. You already have. You just did. 🙂 Happy Mother’s Day!

  7. Sometimes it is so hard to feel good enough. But we all are!!! Just try for a moment to look at yourself through your kids eyes!! That undying love they have, pick up those small moments, remember the first moment you held them. We are most definently amazingly wonderfully good enough!!! <3 Happy Almost Mother's Day Orange Rhinos!!!!!

  8. Thank you so much for this unvarnished honesty of this post. I really, really feel for you because I’ve been doing this same dance with myself for ten years now, since my oldest was born (well, longer than that, if you count the non-mom failures). So, I don’t know if it brings you any kind of comfort knowing you’re not the only one struggling with this–but you are Not. The. Only. One. Struggling. With. This.

    And may I just say, since discovering you about two months ago, you have, just by sharing your struggle and your success, powerfully changed me and my family’s lives for the better. I have tried repeatedly since I first read your blog to stop yelling, just for 24 hours straight. Failing that, I finally broke down each day into 3-hour periods and colored (in orange) on my calendar the blocks when I successfully didn’t yell. My calendar gradually started to get more orange, and today, TODAY I haven’t yelled for almost a week (I’m counting down until the baby goes to bed!)

    I’ve never met you, but I love you so much for the hope you’ve given me that I can be a little better every day than I was yesterday. And that WILL be good enough. God bless, you, Mrs. Orange Rhino. I hope you can feel all that love, because I know I’m only one of the many, many whose lives you’ve touched. Keep being you, keep being real, keep on keeping on. 🙂

  9. I’ve been “hiding” the year long struggle my family went through starting last March by putting ALL KINDS OF THINGS on ,y blog, quotes, pictures, I’ve talked about running, decorating, the garden, everything BUT the horrible darkness and despair we went through. I’ve only known about your site for less than a week, I’ve only been trying to stop yelling for a few days. But tonight,. you inspired me to commit to sitting down and finally start writing out the post hell look back on what we all went, and to some degree still are going, through. My husband and I have been married 13 years and made it through 2 horrible downs in our marriage in the last 3 years. It sucks while you are in it, and so many days I had to force myself not to give up minute by minute. But it was worth it, DON’T STOP FIGHTING. You can do it!!!

  10. I had a totally sucky few months which I’ve just started coming out of. I kept reading the orange rhino and wondering why I was failing, why I wasn’t good enough, why couldn’t I change even when I wanted it so bad. I had the insomnia, I had the tears, the short fuse and the lethargy. Then you know what happened? My youngest boy stopped teething so no longer waking three times a night and grizzly all day which had gone on for 4 months! I started to get some sleep and with it some persective. All negative thoughts have gone, its just back to normal now, no jumping sky high and massive wins each day, just nice normal family. Im sure so many parents out there would be so much more positive about themselves and their wonderful children if we could just get 7 unbroken hours of sleep each night! Can you imagine?!

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