Imposter syndrome – my new arch nemesis

(Written as part of mental health awareness week!)

So it’s that time again- it’s mental health awareness week!

I’ve documented on this blog my previous, and some persisting, mental health issues on this blog.

But this year something new started.

It’s called “imposter syndrome”

And at first, it hid as being a humble person

“Yeah I know my mum is proud of me”

“No I’m really not that clever, honestly”

“Yeah uni is going alright”

In reality uni is going extremely well for me. I’m on track to start my PhD in September. But I still struggle to be proud of my achievements. I’m still shocked when I get a good grade. Every tiny mistake brings the fear of being “found out” by my peers or lecturers, that I’m not as great as everyone thinks I am.

It’s a common problem, I suppose, with the way our systems of social mobility are structured.

You started at the bottom, and you could quite easily end up back there with one ‘wrong move’

I’m having to teach myself to be proud, and actually talk about my achievements without passing them off as nothing.

University is hard- especially as a disabled person.

And it’s about time I acknowledged that.

I’m not an imposter. I’m a disabled, bisexual, passionate academic woman (who really likes cats and live music)

Becca 🙂

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Poem: priorities 

This morning when I got up

My main priority was to finish off those few tweaks to my assignment

Tonight, I have achieved  the following: showered, fed, and dressed myself

This morning when I got up

My main priority was what I would wear to go out with friends in the evening

Tonight, I sit with a hot water bottle, drugged up to cold undead eye sockets, on prescription medication

This morning when I got up 

My main priority was to make it to my lecture 

Tonight, I come in from a hospital dash- it was one of those days when my perscribed medication was doing nothing 

This morning when I got up

I watched the able students of the student body pass my window without a care

This evening I am wiping the dirt off of my walking aid, and hobbling to the kitchen 

That morning, just after my 21st birthday, my priority was to be treated for my pain 

This evening, 4 years later, I still wait

Life inside and out 

It’s weird how different I act outside the house, than I do inside the house. Inside the house I’m a pain-riddled person, who shuffles around the house, can just about manage to dress herself. The one who has to hold onto handrails in the shower. 

The one who, inside, gives herself the hardest time about that time this week when she knocked another drink, or ended up yelling at someone because she felt completely over-simulated by her surroundings, and is stressed up to her eyeballs because she forgot about that piece of reading that was due for her seminar tomorrow.

On the outside I try and hold everything together. Keeping my anxiety from making me publicallu having a breakdown because I’m well within time but still fear being late to university. On the outside, no one sees my  chronic pain or my dyspraxia- so I look like a really ignorant young woman (when is the phrase young woman no longer okay by the way?) when in reality, I’m pushing through pain to move myself enough to get on the train and the tram, so I can get an education- and there’s so much going on in the busy train station, I have to keep checking the board to make sure I get on the right service, and focus on making correct  the movements to walk.
But- thinking positively- I’m proud of how I handle myself, and juggle life inspite of all this.

I’m still managing to keep up with, and get good grades, at university- there have been days when I’ve felt I just can’t carry on, but I just do somehow

There are days when my dyspraxia frustrates the absolute hell out of me, especially with what should be simple things- but it’s this that makes me ‘weird’ and most of the time, I embrace that!
Becca  đź™‚