After a very stressful first and second week of school, I got my first test score back from my Biology class. Ninety-six percent! Not too shabby! I felt good that I did so well when I got the score, but found myself rationalizing away my good grade. It was only the first test, they're bound to get harder. I got lucky. Things like that. Then this morning in the accompanying lab class, I was chatting with this other mom who is in the class (she has a five year old) and she asked me how I did on the test. I modestly told her I did 'okay,' and asked how she had done. She failed. Got a fifty-six percent.. It was then that I realized - it wasn't an easy test. It wasn't luck. I'm smart, I worked hard, and I earned that A. I ended up offering to study with that girl if E could come :).
I don't know why I've doubted myself for so long. In high school, I was very academic. Not like, nerdy academic, but I liked getting good grades. And I did. I could have gotten scholarships, gotten into a really good school. But I didn't know to apply, I didn't know how much it mattered. And after I got married, I lost all that drive, somehow. It's not that M was emotionally abusive. I don't know. Maybe he was. He was certainly manipulative. But he never told me he didn't believe in me or that I couldn't do things... he just didn't expect anything out of me. He didn't demean me, but he didn't build me up either. Actually, though, his actions or lack thereof probably don't have anything to do with it. After the first time he cheated on me, my confidence was shot. And when I married him anyway.. that sealed the deal. Not only did I feel inadequate as a girlfriend/wife, but I lost respect for myself. My dad cheated on my mom on three separate occasions. I swore to myself as a teenager that I would never, ever be as dumb as my mom was. I would never ever put up with infidelity - no second chances. And I let myself down. I repeated my mom's mistakes.
We are still talking about school though! :) Now that I'm back, it's the greatest feeling knowing that I've still got it. I can still achieve things, I can still do what I set my mind to. I'm finally starting to respect myself again. And it's fabulous.