I’d like to tell you, my favorite audience, about Dawn. She’s made some terrible mistakes; but nothing can compare to what she has done to herself.
She refused to accept love.
It was a Friday evening and one of her close friends, Judy, set her on a date with a boy.
Dawn wasn’t expecting anything out of that date; she’d never felt that she was someone somebody would love. Sure, her friends liked her; but her loved ones didn’t _ why? Because they knew her flaws… Her friends didn’t. She’s always had to earn that love, care and affection; it was never free. In a household filled with academically inclined people, she always felt like a misfit. Why wasn’t she good enough? Every time she scored big on her tests, she would get rewarded with sweets, or maybe a fancy dinner or a present. And every time she failed, was treated harshly.
Petrified of failure, she started working harder than anyone, to the point she became a perfectionist. She was capable of working 16 hours a day for months followed by a week’s burnout and then a workaholic again. This toxic cycle went on for years without her realising, that it was slowly killing her.
Dawn didn’t realise that her mind had rewired to think that she would be loved only if she was successful in academics or perfect in something. But Dawn was never as good as the others in her family. She’s felt the pressure to be better than everyone _ because only then was she worthy of love.
During that time of her date, she was going through a tough time in her career. She’s never felt worse. After the first date, the boy let Judy know that he was really interested in Dawn. But when Dawn came to know about this, she was surprised; why did he like her so much? No one actually ever liked her for who she was. What did he see in her that the others didn’t?
On their second date, Dawn told the boy all her faults, just to get rejected. Because she knew that one day, he was going to find out that he likes a person who is completely different from who she was on the first date. Dawn told him everything; all her faults, all her insecurities, all the mistakes she’s made so far.
The boy didn’t turn up on their third date. Dawn wasn’t surprised at this; it was normal for her to be dismissed by people in her life. This felt normal.
She was burdened with expectations and now she walks with shame.