Sunset over False Creek
This morning I went for a run along the False Creek Sea Wall. As I huffed and puffed along the way, one thought kept coming across my mind.
When will it ever be good enough?
I’ve been back home from school for a week now and that seems to be the question of the day. Not having a secure job for next year yet, or at least not having decided what I want to do yet, I get this question at least three times a day it seems.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining about not having an “amazing” job or the fact that I’m about to graduate from one of the world’s top universities. In fact, I still wake up every morning and can’t believe how lucky I am; it’s like winning the lottery each time I get out of bed.
That being said, this feeling of not being good enough has been following me for a while now.
When I first moved to Canada at age five, I wasn’t good enough because I didn’t have the brand name clothing and know all big words like my classmates did. And so I worked harder on my English.
As I grew older and began swimming competitively, I was not good enough because I didn’t have the provincial time standards that some of my peers already had in multiple events. And so I worked harder in practice.
In high school, I was not good enough because I didn’t have the straight A’s, or mostly A’s, that many of my friends did. So I worked harder in class.
And then, when by some miraculous event, I got into Cornell and started swimming there, I was again not good enough because I didn’t have the Wall Street internship or the prep school background that many of my peers did. And so again, I worked harder and am now about to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro to raise money for women with obstetric fistula.
And finally, here I am with one semester left, and again, I am not good enough. My mom and grandma think I’ll be good enough when I get that New York City job with a big firm and start cleaning my room on an hourly basis. Strangely, I don’t see either of those things happening anytime soon.
And that’s what it is. That’s what drives me to work harder, to push the limits of what I used to think was possible. The constant struggle to balance satisfaction and unfinished business. The balance between having the confidence to go out there and work your butt of versus the fear of failing over and over again. It’s the climb up that next mountain once we’ve reached the summit we never thought was possible in the first place.
I’m not saying that I’m any different than anyone else. In fact, I’m saying that this is what pushes most of us to strive to new heights, be it in school, sports or business. Not being good enough coupled with the knowledge that we can do something about it is the cold, hard, uncomfortable medicine we human’s need to get us out of bed in the morning and get things done.
The Fistula Free Climbers are eleven people who are about to do just that in order to make sure that women around the world can achieve that balance and no longer live in a world where they are not good enough.
Help support these women today.